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Barrel life consideration

 
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  #1  
Old 12-12-2012, 01:32 PM
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Barrel life consideration

How much consideration do you experience shooters put into barrel life when choosing a caliber.

I don't do any competitive shooting, only hunting. I have a Sendero 7mm Rem Mag that I am finally have all the stuff I need for, just working on a load right now.

I am looking for a gun that I can shoot that I can put some rounds through for good ole fashioned practice, but that I can also use for some coyotes.

My first choice would be a 22-250. I love everything about it except I have heard that barrel life could be a problem if I am going to want to use this gun as a "practicing" gun also, as I would be putting a descent amount of rounds through it, at least a descent amount of rounds for me anyways. I am thinking about a 52-55gr bullet for this

Second choice, 243. I am wondering if the barrel life for these calibers are similar or if one of them outlasts the other easily. I would probably shoot something like the 87gr Berger hunting bullet to take advantage of the little bit bigger caliber and not have any problems extending my range a little.

The third choice is a 223 rem. Seems like the barrel life would be great and it would be a good gun for "practicing" but I just don't know if it is quite quick enough to be using on a lot of coyotes. I don't really want to limit my coyote range to 250yds if I don't have to. I am thinking something like a 52-55gr bullet for this caliber.

So if anybody can give me any comparisons to barrel life in these calibers as far as a slight guesstimate of number of rounds that would be great. Also, is the 223 a good coyote gun or not? I know they have a lot of popularity for varmints, but I just don't know if it would be enough I guess. Thanks for any input anybody can give me.
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  #2  
Old 12-12-2012, 01:56 PM
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Location: The cold part of Montana
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Re: Barrel life consideration

There's no reason a barrel can't go 2-3000 rounds on a 22-250 or more if you take care of the barrel, keep it clean, don't get it hot, don't push it for max velocity.

A friend of mine used to get about 3000 rounds out of his AR chambered in 223, but he was shooting High power for the NG shooting team. Used for more conventional purposes, varminting, pinking, a barrel on a 223 taken care of will last a long long time. Depending on your specific load, barrel combination I don't see why a 223 wouldn't be fine out 500yrds on a yote.

243 I'm still on the original barrel on my 243, Dad gave it to me for my 1st hunting rifle 30years ago, I couldn't begin to guess how many rounds down range it has. I used it for everything from gophers to deer.
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Keep in mind the animals we shoot for food and display are not bullet proof. Contrary to popular belief, they bleed and die just like they did a hundred years ago. Being competent with a given rifle is far more important than impressive ballistics and poor shootability. High velocity misses never put a steak in the freezer.

Joe
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  #3  
Old 12-12-2012, 02:19 PM
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Re: Barrel life consideration

As far as a rifle goes, my plan at this point is to go with a Remington VLS.

As far as the 223 goes, I think as long as you know how your gun shoots, it would probably be fine. Probably the main reason why I am thinking about the 223 is I have a bunch of shells for it already, and a bunch of brass for it already, so it would be easy and cost efficient to get some rounds going through it. Plus, it would be a cheap practice gun.

The 243 is always one that catches my eye. Down the road, I could get a different stock for it for a shorter length of pull and it would be a good rifle to get my girls learning to shoot a little bit on as they get older. The nice part with the 243's is there is generally some fired brass out there a guy can get fairly cheap so that tends to help with some shooting cost a little I guess.

Someone told me a 223 will go 8-10,000 rounds with your average load. Anybody got a guesstimate on what a 243 will go?
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Old 12-12-2012, 03:42 PM
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Location: Texas
Posts: 5,199
Re: Barrel life consideration

Barrel life is variable depending on many things, velocity,barrel care, rate of twist, Material,
powder type and charge, ETC.

if you keep the velocity at or below 3000 ft/sec, keep it cool, keep it clean and well maintained
it should last for a long time if primarily used for hunting.

Most dont worry about barrel life, they are aware that hot loads,high pressures and temperature
may cut barrel life.

There is no free ride. If you want to shoot into the next zip code, barrel life will not be great, and most are willing to except 1000 to 1200+ for what they want.

The calibers you mentioned are not bad. The 22-250 being the worst, on average with good
practices they have been known to do 4000 to 6000 rounds before any accuracy was lost.

Go with what you want and dont worry about barrel life. You will know when it is time to change
barrels.

J E CUSTOM
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  #5  
Old 12-12-2012, 08:46 PM
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Re: Barrel life consideration

Most answers you get on this subject(anywhere) are flat out wrong -without first defining 'barrel life'.
Obviously for some, barrel life holds until bullet jackets separate. For others it's the point where sustained performance passes a peak.

Even a 223Rem would not likely see 4000 rounds of 'peak' performance(without having melonite treated the barrel).
Competitors who actually shoot precisely(well under 1/2moa) would provide completely different numbers than tactical shooters chasing steel, or hunters who think 1moa is as good as anyone can expect from a hunting gun.
Hell, 1moa ain't never gonna be about barrel life... You'd shoot forever before barrel life itself degrades performance that badly.

But if your cartridge has truly held 1/4moa, and did so for ~3000 rounds, you'd be real unhappy about 3/8moa at 3500 rounds. Don't matter what others think the barrel life should be for it. You know what it is to you at that point.

You know 22-250 and 243 are barrel burners, so they're not ideal for target shooting, which is why you don't see them in competition(as actually competitive).
If you want your cake & icing too, you might seek a 6BR or 6.5x47L or 7WSM. Something mild & middle of the road for cal.

As mentioned, nothing is free
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  #6  
Old 12-12-2012, 09:51 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 326
Re: Barrel life consideration

That's probably a good explanation. Kinda what I was thinking in the back of my mind. It is always hard to tell what someone expectations are I guess. Thanks for the explanation.

Just out of curiousity, people talk about these Savages that you can just drop barrels in and out of. Is it as simple as unbolting and bolting one in? Can you do it yourself? Kinda curious I guess. I have been more of an archer than a firearm guy for the last few years so I have kinda lost touch with this stuff.

As you explain, everything has a trade off. Kinda the same for archery, so it all makes sense. Thanks everybody for the explanation.

Basically what I am concluding after all this is buy what you want, worry about the rest later.
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  #7  
Old 12-12-2012, 10:26 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: The cold part of Montana
Posts: 1,390
Re: Barrel life consideration

lol yep that about sums it up

As mike said depends on what you call acceptable. And like i said it depends on how you treat it. You can cook a barrel pretty quick or maxmize its life, and as Mike pointed out theres also melonite treatment, its interesting, but it also seems to have its draw backs.

Myself I'm not at all disapointed with the barrel life on my 22-250, many many rounds and 10 years it still shoots better than me.
__________________
Keep in mind the animals we shoot for food and display are not bullet proof. Contrary to popular belief, they bleed and die just like they did a hundred years ago. Being competent with a given rifle is far more important than impressive ballistics and poor shootability. High velocity misses never put a steak in the freezer.

Joe
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