I have a 700 in 7RM stainless barrel. I received the rifle pre-owned, so I do not know the history prior to my ownership.
Since I have had it I have put in the vicinity of 400-500 rounds through it. I have always cared for it, regular cleaning etc, but I have always noticed that it fouls rather quickly. Two weeks ago I totally cleaned the barrel out with Shooter Choice extra strength copper remover. Had patches coming out completely clean and no sign of copper in the barrel after I was done from what I could see. This last weekend I went out to do some longer range workup's and after 15 rounds the barrel looks as seen below. Is this normal fouling for 15 rounds? I just do not remember any of my other rifles fouling this quickly.
I cleaned it again tonight and it took forever.. It was not easy to clean at all. The funny thing though is that it still shoots ok, although not the way it used to. Right now it is typically around 1 MOA. Sometimes it will shoot a really good group, just not consistently any more. Not astonishing by any means, but not 3" groups either.
When you look down the bore it does look rough, you can certainly see the machining marks perpendicular to the barrel. I have though about using the Tubb Final Finish Bore Lapping bullets to try and improve the finish inside the barrel, but I do not know if it would help after what is nearly certainly 500-700 rounds through it. I also do not know if it would be worth the money as I am looking at re-barreling it with a good custom barrel this winter/spring, having it blueprinted, and going with a different stock. Might also switch to 7STW while I am at it.
So is this normal fouling for 15 rounds, or am I worried about nothing? And should I even try to use the Tubb bullets to improve it? It sure seems like it coppered up quickly and it is a bear to clean the copper out...
Oh, by the way, the pics were taken after about 15 minutes of cleaning, was a bit worse then they show when I started.
To be perfectly honest it really does not get a lot worse after 15 rounds. I am a bit more concerned with pressure increases due to the fouling although I do not know at what point this would start to happen. I might put some of the Tubb rounds through it to see if they will polish the bore some, but what I really want to do is build it with a new barrel. I just cannot do it yet with Christmas coming up, kids take priority.
Thats not really the end that counts anyway, it's the OTHER end that counts. With 700 rounds down the tube, I'd be way more concerned about what the throat looks like.
You need a Hawkeye for that and I believe you'd be suprised if you looked.
You might want to take it to a smith or a big sporting goods outlet (like Cabelas). Most have a borescope, especially the ones who take firearms on trade in because it pays to look....at the other end.
'It's not about me, it's about we'..........