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New Barrel, help!

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Old 04-20-2013, 06:35 AM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Wyoming
Posts: 2,676
Re: New Barrel, help!

Looks like QC has went down the tubes there.
I will change my recommendations.
Originally Posted by Buttermilk View Post
I've had six MGM barrels.

Of those six MGM barrels, only one was made 100% correctly.

One needed the scope base modded just to get the scope on paper at 100 yards. Scope ran out of adjustment and was still 20+ inches off. MGM's fix was a 20 MOA base.

Second barrel was short chambered by 0.018".

Third barrel was cut shorter than requested and wrong scope base was supplied. MGM also failed to drill and tap for a 6 hole base. Barrel was returned.

Fourth barrel was a replacement for the above barrel. Scope base was correct but barrel was drilled and tappeEd offset to the right by a few degrees. Throat was also 0.060" longer than requested (dummy rds were sent in to set throat).

Fifth barrel was made on my blank. By this time I was really apprehensive about sending it in but I did... So far This barrel is the only barrel made 100% right.

I sent in the stub from the fifth barrel for MGM to make the sixth. After getting the fifth made absolutely right, I'd lost my apprehension. When I opened the package on the sixth, I was pretty hacked! First thing I noticed was the missing scope base and the scope base holes drilled and tapped grossly offset to the right, and crooked to boot! The throat on this one was so long I could drop a bullet into the barrel and then seat a case on top of it without the case touching the bullet. THIS on MY blank! I sent it back. MGM fixed the scope base by moving forward 0.100" and redrilling the holes. Unfortunately the throat couldn't be fixed. I gave this barrel away and informed the individual of the issues.

THAT is why I recommend SSK...

MGM will also use Green Mountain blanks unless you request otherwise. These blanks are not what I'd consider "top shelf" blanks.

I've done business with SSK and have never had an issue. Cost is more but it'll be done right.

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Old 04-20-2013, 09:44 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 51
Re: New Barrel, help!

Thanks for the real world experience. The key to me is that these kinds of issues on TC barrels cannot really be fixed, so any repair IMO, ought to come with a $200 check with the repaired barrel....I mean, what are you gonna do?? Weld up a throat and recut? Really, the same could be said for scope mount threads.

So SSK, Bulberry or eabco? Others?

What other fun easy to form 224 or 6mm calibers are there?

Isn't 6mm TCU a 3000 fps round out of a 15" barrel with lighter flat base bullets?
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Old 04-21-2013, 01:37 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 62
Re: New Barrel, help!

SSK uses Shilen barrels. Don't know what kind Fred @ Bullberry uses, but i can tell you the last three that showed up in this neck of the woods look and shoot outstanding. Other cartridges...hmmm...6mm Improved? Light 6mm bulletts and Wyoming Wind do not mix well. 150 yards for 60grainers and the odds become a lot better for prairie dogs. The 225 Win. based JDJ cartridges are the kings of performance in Contenders. My friend had a 257JDJ years ago that would put 87g Nosler BT in 1/2 in. doing nearly 2800fps. Great for small stuff, lacking on antelope @ 300. 6.5 JDJ is pleasant to shoot and kills well with the basket of 120g stuff on deer. To soup things up a bit, the 6.5 Mini-Dreadnaught looks tantalizing. Good barrels on TC frames will shoot 1/2MOA in the hands of a good operator. They are easy to shoot and do not bear the serious $$$$ burden of a custom bolt gun. The horsepower and accuracy required to work at 500yds will not be inexpensive.
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Old 04-21-2013, 04:20 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 51
Re: New Barrel, help!

Nothing wrong with the standard 243win or 260Rem either. I'd go 260rem between the two if it were my choice. Good bullet selection and BC.

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Old 04-21-2013, 07:09 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 51
Re: New Barrel, help!

I don't think a contender will handle 243 or 260 rem, will it??
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Old 04-21-2013, 10:16 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 51
Re: New Barrel, help!

Contender frames will not. Encore frames will. I apologize. Wasn't sure which frame you had..

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Old 04-23-2013, 08:42 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,036
Re: New Barrel, help!

I don't know who made the barrel that I got in an estate sale on a Contender frame with the dies and everything. It is 14" chrome molly in 6mm- 225 Winchester. It is the 225 Winchester case necked to 6mm with a shoulder that looks like the Ackley Improved. I know that SSK used to make what they called the 6mm JDJ. It was basically what I have. The 225 Win necked to 6mm. I can get 2800 fps with a 80 gr Sierra SSP bullet with a case full of Varget. I have killed a few WT deer with it. It shoots very accurately and does a pretty good job on deer.

I only have one MGM barrel and it is perfect. It is a 14" Shilen SS 30-30AI.
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