Cut rifling vs button rifling

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by locotrician, Sep 22, 2007.

  1. locotrician

    locotrician Banned

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    I know how each rifling process is done, what im asking is what are the advantages of one over the other and the drawbacks. thanks
     
  2. lazylabs

    lazylabs Well-Known Member

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    Before anyone gets angry lets start by saying both methods can produce barrels that are beyond human capacity to shoot.

    Button barrels are made by swaging the grooves, either pulling or pushing a carbide or other very hard material through the barrel and displacing the metal and not cutting it. This induces a lot of stress in the barrel. This also must be done while the barrel is in full blank size to prevent a tapered hole. The barrels are stress relieved to get them back to "normal". I think most of the time they are contoured at this stage. They are then lapped to get a consistant bore diameter.

    Cut barrels are rifled after they are contoured then the grooves are cut at about .0001 per pass to desired depth, then lapped.

    The differences in my OPINION... The twist is probably more consistant across the cut rifled barrel. In a cut barrel the twist rate is conrolled by turning the cutter as it passes down the barrel. Button barrels the twist is mostly controlled by the shape of the button and the twist rate can vary depending on many variables. The proof to me that cut rifling is more consistant than button rifling is the fact that quite a few button barrel makers offer different grades of barrels. I have never seen this from the cut barrel makers. The cut barrels can also be ordered with more custom twist rates, groove profiles and diameters. It is much easier to change the gear ration that creates the twist rate on a cut machine than get a button made specifically for one barrel. The down side to cut rifling... it takes much longer to rifle the barrel, several hours vs seconds...for the rifling.

    It's really about personal preference since both can make a barrel that shoots better than we do. I see advantages to the cut process and that makes me a little happier when I pull the trigger so that's what I shoot....mostly....LOL
     

  3. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

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    Button rifleing builds stresses in into the barrel and cut rifleing does not...I prefer cut rifleing
     
  4. mikebob

    mikebob Well-Known Member

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    I have one of each, and I cant tell the diff in accuracy or cleaning. One is a hart and one is a lilja. I think if you get a good bbl they both will be more accurate than you can be.
     
  5. lazylabs

    lazylabs Well-Known Member

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    Hart and Lilja are both button barrels.
     
  6. locotrician

    locotrician Banned

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    if anyone "get angry" about a post made on the internet they need to get a life, and if they anger that easily over nothing should probably have their guns taken away.
     
  7. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

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    WTF are you refering too???
     
  8. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

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    Deleted
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2007
  9. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    The basics of how the two barrels are made have already been mentioned so I will not add much to that.

    I will however say that the issue with a button pulled barrel having more issues with stresses is only with lower priced barrels.

    I use Lilja barrels nearly 10 to 1 for my customers, why, because I get what I order, I get what I order in a timely and consistant manner and I have yet to have even one barrel not easily meet my 1/2 moa or better accuracy guarantee for my customers.

    That said, while I have used mainly Lilja barrels, I have also used many barrels from most of the top barrel makers in the country and will tell you that seeing a real difference between a cut rifled barrel and a button rifled barrel is really extremely difficult to do.

    In fact the actual machining of the barrel and receiver has more effect on final performance then the difference between these two barrels if there is in fact any accuracy potential difference.

    Now lets get down to why I prefer Lilja barrels. I can place and order and the barrel will be in my shop in 8 to 9 weeks almost to the money, try that with any of the top end cut rifled barrels and it will either take twice that long or it will be one of those god knows when it will show up. Those that have delt with some of the upper end cut rifled barrels know what I am referring to.

    Krieger is very consistant, it taked them around 16 to 18 weeks to get in a barrel.

    One HUGE benefit to cut rifled barrels is the option to get different twist rates and also get land width cut to your specs in many cases. That is not possible with button pulled barrels unless you pay for the custom buttons to be made, that can get spendy.

    In my experience, a button pulled barrel will break in quicker on average then a cut rifled barrel. I can not say it is because the way the barrel was rifled but it may. It may also be that cut rifled barrels on average are much harder then button pulled barrels. The button pulled barrels have to be softer or the button simply can not be pulled through the bore with good results.

    Some say the harder barrels will have longer barrel life, I have not found this to really be the case. I have found that land width and throat dimensions have much more effect on this then the steel used in the barrels.

    Back to stresses, it was mentioned that some feel cut rifled barrels put out more consistant barrels and this is proven because button pulled barrel makers often have different grades of barrels.

    I personally do not agree with this comment. The reason is because if a button pulled barrel is out of spec to some degree, at least the entire bore or cross section of the bore will be consistant and still usible depending on what you want to do with the barrel.

    In a cut rifled barrel, you screw up, the barrel is basically spoiled. The groove depth would be inconsistant and there would be no use in the barrel. That is why you only see one grade of cut rifled barrels, because if they screw it up it goes in the scrap pile for recycle steel as there is no use for it as a rifle barrel as is.

    As far as the different grades of cut rifled barrels, just because one maker offers several grades does not mean they all do. Lilja offers one and only one quality of barrel, true BR match grade and nothing less. If you get a Lilja barrel, you know its as good of a barrel as you can get today.

    The fact that Lilja does not offer sub qualitybarrels to leave their shop is only a testiment to the commitment they have toward their customers and offering only top end barrels. Other companies simply are trying to recover money by selling lower quality barrels at lower prices which is not a problem because they tell you what your getting and you make up your mind.

    If cut rifled barrels could be used you would see alot of those companies doing it as well but they can not be, again as far as I understand the process of making a cut rifled barrel.

    Also, there are no more stesses in a Lilja barrel then there are in any cut rifled barrel. Lilja barrels are double stress relieved in shop so that is not even a concern as some mention it is a problem. That simply is not true.

    If you compare top end cut rifled barrels to top end button pulled barrels, there will be no difference in accuracy or consistancy.

    If you compare low end button pulled barrels to upper end cut rifled barrels, of course there is a difference but to lump all button pulled barrels into one class is fool hardy at best.

    As mentioned, I use Lilja barrels 10 to 1 for my customers. That said, if a customer comes to me and asked for a Hart, Krieger, Broughton, Rock or any other well establised barrel maker, I will have no problem because I know that any barrel from any of these makers will result in a fine shooting rifle if I do my part for my customers.

    Simply put, if there is a difference, and if we set asside personal opinions and preferences, the difference is so small you could not say one is really better then another.

    That is my opinion, take it for what its worth.

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  10. lazylabs

    lazylabs Well-Known Member

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    Fifty.. I was just pointing out that button rifling does induce more stress in a barrel than cut rifling, if that wasn't true Lilja wouldn't waste the time or money double stress relieving them.

    You may get good service from Lilja but I have never recieved a barrel from them in less than 3 months. I am not a volume customer so that is probably why. They are certainly cheaper if you are going over 1.250 dia than most other places. I haven't had a bunch of barrels from them but the ones I did seem to be tighter than most... have you experienced the same?

    Just for argument sake... You said it wasn't fair to compare the lower end button barrel makers to higher end cut makers. Who are the lower end cut makers? That was the point I was trying to make with getting a more consistant barrel from a cut maker.

    Sort of off topic but.... have you heard anything on the .375 WC's?
     
  11. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

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    Lab, button rifling does indeed induce stress in to a barrel,anytime material is removed by force such as with button rifling there is stress induced...No one has said that a button barrel was not accurate...Double stress relieving may remove these stress,but a cut rifled barrel doesn't have them to begin with....
     
  12. HOGGHEAD

    HOGGHEAD Well-Known Member

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    Heat

    Great read. does one heat up faster than the other during volume shooting?? Tom.
     
  13. locotrician

    locotrician Banned

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    hey JWP45 , as for your WTF comment i was reffering to the post made by Lazylabs on the first page of this thread. thanks
     
  14. jwp475

    jwp475 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks.......[​IMG]