3 grove barrel??

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by yeahbuddyprostaff, Dec 11, 2009.

  1. yeahbuddyprostaff

    yeahbuddyprostaff Member

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    I have a 28” 1:10 #5 Lilja barrel going on a .300. I have agonized over all sorts of options an variables on this riffle and thought I had every thing set. Then the gun smith called and dropped this bomb on me. “Three or six grove barrel?” All of my guns are 6. What may I gain or not gain using a 3?

    I understand that it may be easier to clean…..I don’t care about that. I am wondering about performance. I typically shoot 210 berger bullets and have had some luck with 200 gr SGK. But this gun has not been fired yet, since it is still in a bunch of pieces..... It is a hunting rifle and I am comfortable shooting to 800 yards.


    Thanks
     
  2. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    3 grooves shoot as good as 6 grooves. The theory behing the thre groove is that the lands are twice as wide as the lands in a 6 groove and thoretically increases throat life. It wont offer twice the life butu can offer some percentage more usable life. Most guys shy away from them with smaller calibers due to the jacket displacement of smaller bullets.
     
  3. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    I had a 3 groove 11 twist Lilja in 300 RUM and it shot great. The most impressive thing was the barrel life which was better than I expected....Rich
     
  4. Chas1

    Chas1 Well-Known Member

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    You said all your guns are 6 grooves, are you happy with how they perform? if so then you could go 6. What's your smith think? 6 or 3-you'll hear pro and cons but I haven't seen any concrete evidence that 6 is better than 3 or vise versa. I go with 3 grooves.
     
  5. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    +1

    I have used 6 of the 3 grove barrels on small bores (17 CAL AND 224 CAL) And have been
    very pleased with them.

    I have not used them on larger cal but either 6 or 3 groves should work very well.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  6. azsugarbear

    azsugarbear Well-Known Member

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    Many of us shooting the 270AM and 277AM rifles ran into problems using the longer/heavier .277 wildcat bullets in Lilja 3-groove barrels. After about 350-400 rounds down the tube, these bullets began to break apart before reaching the target. The problem was primarily with the bullets. The 3-groove barrels have a lot of contact with the bullet jacket. The heavier/longer bullets have a lot more bearing surface. When you combine that with a slightly thinner jacket, you get a recipe for disaster. We needed a heavier jacketed bullet (not available yet), or a shorter bullet (lighter) to reduce the bearing surface to solve our problem. The other solution might have been to switch to more grooves in the barrel. A quick search will turn about several threads on this problem that began occuring approx. two years ago.

    I should emphasize that this situation with the .270 Allen Magnums was the exception rather than the rule with 3-groove barrels. Other calibers fair very well. It shouldn't be a problem in a 30 cal, unless you start shooting 240 gr. bullets with thin jackets. :)
     
  7. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Also wasn't there a problem with twist rates being to fast ?

    Some were trying to use fast twist like (1 in 7 or 8) and these are very hard on bullets even in
    6 groove barrels at the velocities some of the wildcats achieve.

    The best advice I can give is to talk to Dan Lilja and tell him what you are going to expect out
    of your rifle (Velocity) and let him recomend the proper twist and groove style that is best.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  8. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Very good advicelightbulb
     
  9. liltank

    liltank Well-Known Member

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    Here... try this out and see what it recommends. If it adds any comfort, I have decided on the Lilja 3 groove 1:11 for my 300WSM. I currently shoot the 208grn A-Max and I think this will help me to capitalize on velocity, pressure, and barrel life.

    Real Guns

    Tank
     
  10. yeahbuddyprostaff

    yeahbuddyprostaff Member

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    Thanks for the help....after a little more research I am going with the three grove. I will be sure to share my results.


    Thanks,

    Carter
     
  11. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    J E Custom's response is pretty much spot on.

    The problem isn't the 3 grooves, it's the fast twist rate. My email conversation with Mr. Lilja indicates that more robust jackets are necessary.

    Bullets that work well in my 270 AM, I believe one of the earliest ones made, include:
    Nosler Solid Base (NABs or Ballistic Tips)

    Hornady Interlocks (lead tipped).

    All others dust at AM velocities.

    The jackets on these three not only maintain integrity and shoot very well, they also have good terminal performance. Especially the 140 Hornady.

    The down side is that the BC of this selection is is dismal when compared to the original Wildcats.:)

    I'm working on modifications to the nosler and hornady to improve bc and maybe a touch of weight.

    I'm also working on a jacket design to get back performance that I came to expect from the original Wildcat 169.5s

    I'd be weeks ahead of where I am at the moment but had to take 2 weeks down time and am in the middle of 4 weeks of very light duty time.

    I now know what a deer or elk would feel like if after you shot the thing and didn't know that he needed a second shot until you had made fthe full cleaning incision. At which time it was decided to sew him shut with some ten twine, get him on his feet and send him to grow another year.:rolleyes:

    That's what was pretty much done to me though they threw away some, what I would have thought, were needed internal organs.:)
     
  12. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    I'm glad they didn't take your great sense of humor and that your doing better Roy !!!!

    And back to the subject, I like the 3 grove barrels so much I just ordered a .224 in a 1 in 8
    Per Dan Liljas recommendation for the intended use.

    I have a lot of faith in his opinion because he could just as easily have sold me one of the 6 grove barrels he makes if he though it was better.

    I highly recomend that anyone ordering a barrel from "Any" barrel maker ask them what
    they think would be the best twist rate for your preferred bullet weight and velocity, after all
    it would make sense for them to try and place you in the best performing barrel instead of
    having an unhappy customer and loosing future sales.

    Some times we are our own worst enemy and need to listen to the expert in that field and
    avoid more heartaches.

    Any way get well and keep on posting.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  13. Bart B

    Bart B Well-Known Member

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    Re: 3 groove barrel??

    For what it's worth, folks shooting 30 caliber 150 to 155 grain bullets in long range matches around the world learned years ago that 4-groove barrels shot them more accurate than 5 or 6 grooves do. Why may well be a mystery, but it's a fact.
     
  14. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Roy.....I hope your recovery is fast and complete! MERRY CHRISTMAS to you and your family. If you want to talk bullets, :Dgive me a call....Rich