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30-06 barrel length

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Old 12-03-2013, 09:04 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 78
30-06 barrel length

I am going to have a rifle built on my old Mauser action. I believe I am going to go with the 30-06. Rifle is primarily for hunting. My question is about the length of the barrel. I typically use 24" barrels but I am wondering how much velocity gain would be with a 26" barrel or if it is even worth it?
Gun will be fitted with a laminate stock so I am thinking the weight of the stock would help with balance.
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Old 12-03-2013, 09:13 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,009
Re: 30-06 barrel length

I personally would go with a 24" barrel. A 26" will maybe give you around 50 fps more velocity but that long barrel just does not handle as well. If you are hunting out of a blind or shooting house the shorter barrel really shines when you have to move from one position to another. I have a 26" barrel on my 25-06 and a 27 3/4" on my 264 Win mag. When I have to move from one position to another in my shooting house it is like trying to carry a 12" ladder through a crowd of people. LOL my 21 1/2" barrel 308 handles much better.
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Old 12-03-2013, 09:21 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: New Bern, NC
Posts: 334
Re: 30-06 barrel length

How far do you plan on shooting? I just recently built a 30-06 on a Winchester Model 70 and was torn on barrel length. After a lot of research I decided to go with only a 22" #5 flutted barrel. I just got it and haven't shot it yet, but the gunsmith was able to put a few rounds of the 168gr berger hybrids @ 1/2 MOA during barrel break in without any real load development. I have a heavy 7WSM for long shots so this was more of an all around do anything rifle that I don't mind lugging around all day and could hopefully go out west after deer and elk one day. The whole goal of the rifle was under 400 yards max. The rifle handles awesome and can't wait to get home and shoot it. Just throwing out my 2 cents for what it's worth (which admittedly isn't much ).

Win Model 70
Work done by Jim See (Center Shot Rifles)

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Old 12-03-2013, 09:35 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 78
Re: 30-06 barrel length

Thanks for the replies. I think I will stay with a 24" barrel. Farthest I would probably shoot would be 500 yards but more often 200 yards and in.
So far my build will include
Shilen barrel
New bolt handle
Model 70 type safety
Boyd's laminate stock
Square up the action
Bead blast finish

Any other suggestions? This is my first rifle to have built. Pretty mild but I want to make sure I do it right.
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Old 12-04-2013, 06:52 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 78
Re: 30-06 barrel length

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Old 12-05-2013, 05:28 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 78
Re: 30-06 barrel length

Well, I'm guessing I have just about covered my bases then. Thanks for the replies. Hopefully get this started soon.
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Old 12-05-2013, 05:41 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Alabama
Posts: 5,368
Re: 30-06 barrel length

I am a firm believer that if you are going to sink money on a custom barrel and rifle, you should get the most out of it as far as barrel length and contour, unless you have a specific need for a shorter or lighter barrel, such as a pack-rifle or some odd circumstances like that.

As for long-action calibers, short mags, and magnum calibers, I think 26" is a minimum...And 24" is the aboslute VERY minimum, for a pack rifle. That's just my opinion. And it needs to be atleast a #3 contour.

As for short-actions, like tactical rifles in .308 Win, .260, etc... 20" bull barrel is the minimum, with 24-26" bull being optimum.

These are not guidelines, and I am not a professional...This is just how I look at things, based on the reasonings and experiences I've had with alot of different guns in my short life.
"I'm just a peckerwood who lives in the hills with too many guns..." - Bob Lee Swagger

"Give me a minute...I'm good. Give me an hour...I'm great. Give me 6 months...And I'm unbeatable." - Col. Hannibal Smith

Ignore everything I say, because I have a reading comprehension and memory problem...

Originally Posted by WildRose View Post
The 284 is to the STW what a tricycle is to a Ninja.
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