Time for a new barrel

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Tim Behle, Jan 27, 2003.

  1. Tim Behle

    Tim Behle Well-Known Member

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    I came home from work tonight a very happy hunter. I received an unexpected incentive check. Enough to pay off a couple of bills, plus buy a new barrel. [​IMG]

    A couple of months ago, I picked up a Savage 110 in .338 Winchester Magnum, with the intention of making a donor of the action.

    I'm thinking of going with a 300 Ultra Mag Improved, with a 32" Lilja barrel. But I am open to suggestions.

    I picked the caliber, due to bullet choices, and I felt it was about the best LR caliber I can build on this action. Any thoughts, good or bad?

    I've had good luck with Lilja barrels, and keep reading more good things about them every day. From what I've read, 32" is about as long as I can go with out having to go to a barrel block, and I don't want to go there with this action.

    My goal is to build a Long range coyote rifle. The range will be limited to the distance I can reach out to and still shoot 4"-5" groups.

    Any thoughts or suggestions?
     
  2. Brent

    Brent Well-Known Member

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    Hey Tim,

    I just bought a 30 cal Lilja barrel for my wifes new gun. I'm 95% sure I'm going to use the 338 Lapua case case improved and necked down. The 700 won't handle the 1.35" straight tube well without a block so...

    I like the Lapua case. My remington brass for my 300 Ultra must be pretty soft stuff because the primer pockets are not real tight after just two firings at pretty normal pressures, 60-63K psi is what they've been running on the Oehler. I have ran a few up to 70k psi but they've been set aside. I don't imagine these will go 6-7 loads and I'll be after new ones unless I wan't to tape the primers in. I might be wrong but it doesn't look good at this point.

    The brass was very consistant stuff, that was good. [​IMG]
     

  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Tim

    I do not know if you can get the .590" diameter bolt face for the savage. If you can, I would highly recommend the Lapua case as your starting point. We modify bolt faces to work all the time, and the Lapua brass is so superior to the others, we are getting 10 to 15 firings from a case at 68,000 psi. and the neck shoulder area needs to be annealed before the primer pockets get loose. The Savage has a much finer thread than the remington, and picks up strength for dealing with pressure in this way.

    The Lilja barrels shoot better than anything else we have tested, however there are many quality barrel makers like Kreiger, Rock, Hart, K & P, HS Precision, Obermeier, and Schneider, that have proven over many years the fine quality of their products.

    Conventional "wisdom" says you should not go over 32" without a block, with the right barrel profile and some fluting, it is not hard to reach the same load values with a 36" barrel. Keep in mind most people giving this 'boxed in' advice heard it from a gunsmith somewhere, and have not done any real world calculations to determine cantilevered loads. [​IMG]
     
  4. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Writers Guild

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    Tim

    go to dan lilja's website and look at what he recommends. If you have any questions, emial him. You will have a response normally that day or next at latest. Personal opinion is that you are going to be pushing it with 32". Second think you will find a tapered barrel is way to go. Better balance, lighter weight and tapered barrels seem easier to tune that straight barrels.

    Good luck

    BH
     
  5. Tim Behle

    Tim Behle Well-Known Member

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    I thought about going with the 338 Lapua and necking it down, but didn't think I'd see more than 50-100 FPS for a lot of extra expense and work.

    Unless I'm not understanding things right, Lapua also makes brass in the 300 RUM. I was planning on using it. I switched from Remington to Norma in my 7 Mag a while back, and won't hardly touch the Remington any more, it made such a difference.

    32" is all I'm willing to go at the moment, if I add a break to it, I'm going to have a hell of a time getting it into and out of the Jeep. If it won't fit into the hunting rig, it's not going to be much use.

    If you can see a better way to reach my goals, with what I have to work with, don't be shy. I'm sure I'll find a better idea a week before it comes back from the 'smith. But if possible, I'd like to find it now [​IMG]
     
  6. bgordon

    bgordon Well-Known Member

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    "My goal is to build a Long range coyote rifle. The range will be limited to the distance I can reach out to and still shoot 4"-5" groups."

    Tim, just a thought. You are going to get outside that accuracy somewhere between 400 yards and maybe 800 yards, depending on how well you and the rifle shoot. From that distance you have a lot of excellent choices without having any need to go with the expensive stuff that you have mentioned. Just about anything from a .257" dia. on up will get you to where you want to go.

    If you are truly wanting to shoot at coyotes out to 800 yards a 6.5-284 would be a superb choice. Because of the high bullet BC, you would have to use the really really heavy 30 cal. bullets to even come close to the drop and wind drift that the good 6.5mm bullets have.
     
  7. Tim Behle

    Tim Behle Well-Known Member

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    Bruce,

    I already have a rifle capable of making one shot kills on coyotes out to 800 yards in 7 MM Remington Mag.

    It is my hopes, that with the better available bullets in 30 cal. plus the extra expense and work, I'll be able to extend that range, at least another 4-500 yards.
     
  8. bgordon

    bgordon Well-Known Member

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    I see, so what you are really interested in is a 1500+ yard round.
     
  9. Tim Behle

    Tim Behle Well-Known Member

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    If the rifle was capable of that, I'd be tickled. That's beyond my abilities at this point. But I am willing to practice and learn.

    I am confident, and comfortable out to 800 now. But I want to learn to extend my reach.
     
  10. Brent

    Brent Well-Known Member

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    Tim,

    As far as I know neither Lapua or Norma make brass for the Ultras yet, one or both of them do however make brass for the 300wsm.

    My dad has a 300wsm and is getting 3250-70 fps with a 180 Ballistic Silvertip and 178 A-Max and just barely over max load at 65-67k psi on the Oehler. It's only a 27.8" tube as well.

    My 300 Ultra is getting the same velocity at the same pressure with a 26" tube, you be the judge, I'm using 95gr and he's using 72gr to do it too. I could gain 50-100 fps if it was at his length, maybe, maybe more if it 32 or better. Something to consider being as you can get good cases for it.

    He is at max powder capacity in this case and it appears to be burning most of it so how much can be gained by the extra length at 32 or more might remain to be seen, the 300 Ultra will make use of the extra length for sure.
     
  11. Tim Behle

    Tim Behle Well-Known Member

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    Brent,

    You were the first of three people in just a few hours to try to break my heart. Just before I started this thread, I was looking at Sinclair's website. I would have sworn I saw 300 UM brass made by Lapua for $89/100 It must have been a dream, I spent the last couple of hours searching for it, but all I can find is the Remington Brass.

    Now I'm rethinking the entire project. Half MOA out to 1000 yards isn't going to cut it for what I want to do. I need tighter than that, or there isn't any reason to build the rifle.
     
  12. Mysticplayer

    Mysticplayer Writers Guild

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    Tim, Don't mean to throw cold water on your idea but I don't think you are going to achieve the results you want.

    First off, I think that your accuracy requirements are going to be pretty tough. If you look at 1000yd BR results in any calibre, most groups are in the 1/2 MOA range. That is under controlled conditions and wind flags. Backstops tend not to move either.

    In the field, that will not be the case. Making a rifle capable of under 1/2MOA mechanical accuracy is a no brainer. Being able to shoot that is the problem. At the extended ranges you are looking for, one shot hits on such a small target are going to be more a question of statistical luck. Sort of like shooting a PD at 2 miles. Lob enough lead at the thing and you are going to hit it. Repeatable, predictable - no way.

    Look at the smaller calibres like the 6, and 6.5 (maybe even the 7mm). There are now excellent VLD bullets that have BC very close to the 30 cals. The big difference is that with the smaller calibres, you can go much faster.

    Wind drift is probably your biggest problem. Getting the bullet there faster will make a difference. Coyotes tend to not stand in one spot for very long.

    Consider muzzle vel over 3300fps and see how much that reduces wind drift. If the bullets will stay together, going 3500fps is possible. Barrel life will suck but I don't think that is the point of this excercise.

    Wildcats like the 6.5STW or 6WSM may be the answer.

    The interest in the heavy big cal bullets is the performance on big game at extreme ranges. If going after smaller game, they give very little advantage.

    Maybe looking at your goals from a different angle will give you a solution.

    Jerry
     
  13. Brent

    Brent Well-Known Member

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    Tim,

    Sorry, I was actually hoping you found they had the stuff, damn...

    I think Jerry has a pretty good view of things there.
    If Lapua had brass for the Ultra yet I'd hope we'd find out real quick.
    I never heard anyone mention you could get Norma brass for the 300wsm, but not many people around here use one though.

    It sounds like we're looking for about the same thing in a LR rifle. [​IMG]
     
  14. Tim Behle

    Tim Behle Well-Known Member

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    One thing we can sure definitely agree on, the coyotes don't hold still for very long. I'm lucky to get one shot over 300 yards every third time I go out. I'm not to worried about wind however. One of the great things about the valley I live in, is that for 10 months a year, there is virtually no wind the first couple of hours of daylight each day. Which fortunately coincides with the time of day my range finder works the best.

    Once I spot one and get him ranged and the elevation added to the scope, I can usually get him to stop for a few seconds with a bark or howl. But if I miss, he's off and running. The only time I ever get a second shot is if I hit a little far back and put one into the "spin cycle"

    I think I'm still going to have the rifle built. Just lower my expectations a little. Maybe if I tinker with it long enough, I'll end up with a nice surprise.

    How much can sleeving the bolt help?

    Any preferences for a muzzle brake?

    Tim