260 Rem barrel length?

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by Dooner, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. Dooner

    Dooner Member

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    I'm starting my first build, and I've decided on the Rem 260. What barrel length is best for getting the most speed out of this cartridge? My smith is recommending 26", but I've noticed several guys here go 28". I guess my question is, at what point do you reach diminishing returns? I plan on using this gun mostly for target, varmits, and predators.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Sully2

    Sully2 Well-Known Member

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    I went 26" on mine...same taper as the Rem Varmint barrel...and dropped it all into a Rem Varmint stock I bought from Remington
     

  3. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

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    27" 1/2 on both mine no regrets. 2950 FPS from 140 AMAX and H4350
     
  4. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    If you need the extra velocity that the longer barrel can generate then go that route, otherwise trust your gunsmith's recommendation.
     
  5. Dooner

    Dooner Member

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    Thanks guys. What my smith said was that the powder would be done burning at 26" and, that with anymore length, the bullet would be "dragging" in the barrel, thus slowing it down.

    I'm new to this and just trying to understand what advantage shooters have, in this caliber, with a 28" or 30" barrel. I'm wondering if slower burning powders help take advantage of the longer barrels.
     
  6. thales

    thales New Member

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    I think that you will continue to get benefit in terms of velocity as you increase barrel length, even beyond 26". The question is, "At what cost?" You see, you get diminishing returns all along the way, from the legal minimum barrel length all the way to ridiculously long lengths.

    With a 140 gr spitzer bullet seated at normal depth, the .260 will have an expansion ratio of about 8.1 in a 26" barrel. Regarding expansion ratios, a reasonable rule of thumb is that you can get solid gains in ballistic performance as you increase the expansion ratio up to about 8.0, and you should try to do so if you don't have some significant restraint on barrel length.

    This is about where you are with a 26" barrel in .260 Rem. You can still get somewhat smaller additional ballistic benefit as you increase the ratio, by increasing barrel length, up to a ratio of about 11.0, if you are not bothered by a rather long barrel. That barrel length in a .260 Rem would be 36". That's pretty darn long. It's about the maximum that you can buy from a barrel maker without an awful lot of fuss. Then you have considerations like, "Who makes a gun case that will fit this?"

    Increasing barrel lengths beyond an expansion ratio of 11.0 yield progressively smaller ballistic benefits at the cost of increasing impracticality.

    So I would say that if you hunt in wide open country and are not bothered by packing a longer barrel, fine, go for it, all the way up to 30" barrel length. You can benefit from the extra velocity there. If you hunt country that is the least bit forested or brushy, keep to a maximum of 26". If you hunt country that is very forested or brushy, a barrel of 18" to 22" may suit you better, and you might consider changing caliber upward to .308 or .358 in order to maximize bullet energy and ballistic performance from the shorter barrel.

    Check this site and play with the numbers;

    Powley Computer

    Best regards and good hunting.
     
  7. Sully2

    Sully2 Well-Known Member

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    HUH???
     
  8. thales

    thales New Member

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    Wellll, if you can't figure it out, and you don't want to do your homework, just get an '06 and factory ammo and live with the results you get.

    If you do want to figure it out, the NRA book, "Handloading" by William Davis is an excellent starting reference.

    [ame="http://www.amazon.com/Handloading-William-C-Davis/dp/0935998349/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1330837887&sr=1-"]Amazon.com: Handloading (9780935998344): William C. Davis: Books@@AMEPARAM@@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51pkl1VHtXL.@@AMEPARAM@@51pkl1VHtXL[/ame]

    At less than 10 bucks, this is a lot cheaper than one box of factory rifle loads. The time you invest may be more costly, depending on your intelligence and thirst for knowledge.
     
  9. johnnyk

    johnnyk Well-Known Member

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    Good info Thales. Thanks. JohnnyK.
     
  10. Sully2

    Sully2 Well-Known Member

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    A LOT depends on what bullet and powder you plan on using! Some light bullet and fast powders burn up before you would get to 26".....other S.L.O.W. powders take more barrel.

    For a multi usage rifle as you describe...Id follow the smith's recommendations for the 26"
     
  11. ken snyder

    ken snyder Well-Known Member

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    Around my area for hunting it would be a 24 inch #5 contour with twist rate dependent on which bullet it is actually going to be used.