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carbon wrapped barrels??????

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Unread 01-17-2008, 12:30 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Fort Shaw, Montana
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I built 8 rifles last year using the ABS barrels and have another 6 ABS barrels sitting on the bench to be fitted and shipped yet this year, but that does not mean they were shipped in a timely manor or that I did not have to bother the hell out of them to get the barrels I personally ordered from them.

Hell, on two of them, I told them I wanted to cancel the orders and get a refund, barrels showed up in a week or two, funny how that happens.

Only problem, not on the Rock blanks we ordered and barrels were about 1.5 lbs heavier they they were advertised to be with the different barrel blank used. The 338 cal barrel blank I have in shop right now for a customers 338 Allen Magnum is only 6 oz lighter then my Lilja "Allen32" contour I use for my Xtreme Heavy Sporter rifles in that chambering which finish out at around 15.5 lbs bare weight. For nearly twice the money where is the advantage to these barrels, they are no where near as stiff as the all steel barrels, not even close when comparing same or even larger contour carbon barrels to an all steel, fluted barrel.

I am sure you are a fan of these barrels, pretty much have to be to get your rifles down to the weights you advertise them to be. As far as accuracy and consistancy, I have no problems with the barrels, I have fitted and chambered a couple dozen ABS barrels that either I ordered or had sent to me by customers orders over the last couple years and every one has shot very well, easily breaking my 1/2 moa accuracy requirements but getting the barrels in a timely manor has been a serious frustration. And the fact that you do not get the barrel blank you ordered is troubling.

The barrel Magicofmt is referring to was ordered Jan of 07. Well, that is when my Credit Card was charged for the deposit anyway.

I believe you have mentioned that your close to their shop and have been there several times, maybe you being that close is why you get better service. Squeaky wheel thing.

Anyway, your comments about getting 4 barrels from them last year means very little, as mentioned, I sent 8 rifles out last year with those barrels on them and I have 6 more in the shop to fit and send. That does not mean everyone I have ordered has not been a serious pain in the rear to get to my shop door and this comment has been echoed by MANY others.

I know with your rifles, you are pretty dependant on these barrels so I would not expect any bad press from you. Not good for your business but your experience with them is not the norm in any way, in fact it is very rare from what I am hearing and experiencing.

How long did it take you to get those 4 barrels from ABS, from order time to coming through your door?

Kirby Allen(50)
Kirby Allen(50)

Allen Precision Shooting
Home of the Allen Magnum, Allen Xpress and Allen Tactical Wildcats and the Painkiller Muzzle brakes.

Farther, Faster and Flatter then ever before.

Web Page: www.apsrifles.com

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Unread 01-18-2008, 10:57 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: polson MT.
Posts: 747
ABS barrels- NO way

I would never buy a barrel ever again from ABS as kirby said "i sent e-mails never got any response." I finally called rock barrel; kirby called ABS again and i called; finally got the barrel and guess what? the barrel was not a rock 5 it was a barrel i or kirby never heard of. great now i got a $1,000 barrel that might not shoot worth a dam, not to mention its way to heavy, can't make weight in Idaho. Save your money! Do not buy from ABS. They told my smith that the barrel would be much lighter than it came in at. So if you can't trust them don't deal with them, unless you want to get a barrel from some company that you never heard of.
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Unread 01-20-2008, 12:57 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 810
I am one not to give bad press to any company over the internet, if that was the case i would allready said some nasty words about another barrel company, they cost me 700.00 for a piece of **** barrel that i got no satisfaction on, least to say i will never buy or install one of his barrels.

Yes ABS can take a long time to get, my longest wait has been 8 months. I tell my customers up front, if this is what you want then be preparded to wait. I dont push ABS or any other carbon barrel, i only use them for special builds. When your trying to build the lightest rifle in these big chambers, every ounce here and there adds up. Some want the carbon barrel cuse it looks neat. I dont own one my self, like to but they are too expensive for my taste and i dont hunt. I build them, let everyone else have the fun.

The overal weight of the carbon barrel depends on the liner under the carbon. I had mine made to my specs for wrapping, there is only 8-10 ounces of carbon on the blanks i get (thats a lot of carbon). My bbl liners weighed 4.5# before any contouring was done. I also make the barrel nuts out of Ti for Mike to install when he builds them, that cuts more weight.

I ordered a carbon in a large straight taper, 1.400 to 1.250 muzzle. That barrel had a larger liner in it from Mike Rock, it was right at 7# . I dont use Rock liners to much, they have a tendency to be a bit droopy. They all have shot in the .2's but can be a pain to chamber and index. Making the liners is no easy task, more end up in the scrap bin that go out. Most barrel makers wont do one to Mikes specs, they will only do a #1 contour type barrel and then they are wrapped, this ends up with a heavier end product.

It can be the same with other aspects in this industry, when someone tells me its going to be 4-6 weeks delivery, i figure on 4-6 months. They all stretch the truth. Seems all barrel makers have the tendency to give you a shorter time than actully will happen. It can be frustrating, but there is only a hand full of quality barrel makers out there supplying the entire industry, world wide.

I try to get all my customs out in 4-6 months, standard builds...carbon barrel builds will be longer. The only carbon barrels ive used are on the large 338 snipe-tac chamber.


"Let the good times roll"
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Unread 01-21-2008, 12:56 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Fort Shaw, Montana
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There are alot of rifle componant companies out there that will tell you one thing about shipping time and then give you another. In many cases depending on the manufacturer, that is understood.

I use Lilja barrels for 95% of my rifle builds, I do not know how many I have ordered from them to date, would have to check on that but I know its pushing up to well over 200 barrels in just the last few years. Every barrel I have ordered from then has arrived in 8-9 weeks from time of order except for a couple orders that were placed when they moved their shop.

In all those barrels I have had two that arrived that were not as I ordered as far as taper or twist rate. ALso, of all those ordered, I have only had two that would not EASILY shoot well under 1/2 moa with the first loads put through the barrels. Of those two, one was my fault, the other was just a barrel that needed to be relapped by Lilja. The one that was my fault was a 30" #5 contour barrel in 25 cal that I asked Dan to flute with large 5/16" flutes. THe barrel was just to flimsy with my 257 Allen Magnum chambering in the 1-7 twist with the 156 gr ULD RBBT loaded to 3400 fps.

Still, it was plenty accurate to shoot some big game out to over 500 yards with perfect performance, just not 1/2 moa.

Krieger barrels are also world class and I use them probably the most second to the Lilja barrels. THey take a long time but they always show up within 16 to 18 weeks in most cases. Occasionally 20 weeks but thats the longest I have had to wait.

As far as stocks, Manner stocks are about the best I have used for getting stocks to me on time and fast for that matter.

For receivers, The very best I have used are Nesika, they get there within 8-10 weeks of order, all the time.

If I HAVE to have a rifle out in a certain amount of time, I turn to these manufacturers.

I bring this up because there are great companies out there that have their ducks in a row. There are also other companies out there that offer GREAT products but working with them is just a pain. So much so that its often more work then worth the products they sell.

I am not in the business of giving bad press to a company either but when someone asks my opinion specifically about a company, I simply refuse to blow smoke up their pant leg and say that more them likely they will get their barrels in the time they are told by ABS, because that is simply untrue. Its a long wait, at times its a big fight and the end result just is really not worth it in my opinion.

When a company takes your deposit payment and you wait a year for the product and then call them back to see what the hell is going on and their comment is, let me know what you ordered and we will get going on it for you, it really take the air out of your sales and the frustration goes through the roof.

So then I have to call my customers who have been asking why their rifle is already several months overdue and I have still not even got the barrel yet and tell them I had to send in the barrel specs for the barrel we ordered over a year ago because they had no idea what we had ordered.......

Customers get pissed at me and I simply get tired of that because its not in my hands but I have to explain the situation to my customers, they get frustrated and I get the brunt of it.

To be honest, if a customers wants an ABS barrel, I will not say no, I simply tell them to call up ABS and order it themselves and send it to me. I offer all the specs then need to order the barrel and they do it themselves.

The reason I do this is so that the customer can see that its them and not me that is holding their project up twice as long as I said it would take to make.

So while they make great barrels, never had one not easily make my 1/2 moa accuracy requirement, in my opinion, they are not worth the fight and extreme wait to get a barrel. I have yet to get an ABS barrel that I personally ordered in less then 10 months and many are WELL past that amount of time.

Just my opinion and one echoed by many times more then those that say ABS has good customer service. The best way to get a company to get their business in order is to get the customers to demand that they do.

Kirby Allen(50)
Kirby Allen(50)

Allen Precision Shooting
Home of the Allen Magnum, Allen Xpress and Allen Tactical Wildcats and the Painkiller Muzzle brakes.

Farther, Faster and Flatter then ever before.

Web Page: www.apsrifles.com

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Unread 01-21-2008, 05:46 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: NY
Posts: 168
Great info here, I was considering one, but for the price and the hassle I won't bother.

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Unread 01-21-2008, 09:33 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: on the rifle range in Utah
Posts: 2,704
I don't want to get into this too much but as the first guy to do some serious research on ABS products and consequently the biggest promoter of them, I feel a little post is probably in order.

I don't want to bash ABS for bad customer service because I'm not 100% sure whether it was all ABS problems, Mike Rock problems, or a mix of the two but I have to agree with Kirby on this one. I think the fact that it is too hard to get an ABS barrel in a timely and reliable manner borders on tragedy. These barrels work and I have proven that. But dealings with clients and gunsmiths that are pulling their hair out with frustration is causing me to do the same. I truly wish that conditions improve for ABS so we can rely on getting barrels again. When I ordered mine back in 2005, ABS was a dream to deal with and no problems were encountered of any kind. But after my postings on the products, Mike D's orders skyrocketed and he simply could not keep up. Then something happened with Rock barrel supplies and things got even worse.

I just wish we could go back to the old days when Mike would answer the phone before the third ring and the order came in the quoted time.
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Unread 01-22-2008, 11:27 AM
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Montana
Posts: 441
Whoa! this wasn't meant to be a post to bash ABS, I just ask BD 408 why it takes so long. Since, I have cancelled my order, I was looking forward to a great carbon barrel but my paitence ran out. I did lots of research and ABS had the best barrel out but I'm a little impatient. Sorry for the bad post
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