are carbon fiber barrels the wave of the future?

Joefrazell

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I think the cool factor may be over in a few more years as more companies are beginning to use them. It is nice to have a barrel that is sendero contour without all that weight
 

tooth doc

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Until recently, carbon fiber barrels have been reserved for the expensive custom rifle market. We are now starting to see more and more barrel makers making these carbon fiber barrels and recently Savage has even released a production rifle with a CF barrel at a bargain if you ask me. Will we see CF barrels hit mainstream rifles? Will they become common place and basically end regular rifle barrels as we have today? Just curious. Partially because will this hurt the value of modern rifles. For example, a rifle from the 90s can still fetch a decent price since there aren't too many differences from them compared to rifles from a few years ago but if CF barrels become common practice, future generations may not want regular barrels making the common rifles now much less value. Thoughts?
I have, and shoot a couple of cf barrels. Like tbem, but personally doubt that they will replace steel. After all is said and done tge cf is wrapped with a resin material that has got to be affected by heat. To what extent, and how fast it will cause the resin to degrade i dont know. Maybe the barrel will be shot out before that happens. I cant believe that the 10 shot strings we shoot in lr comp arent hard on these resins. I dont have definitive answers, just a few thoughts. On a hunting rifle, with many fewr rounds down range they should never be a problem and if you like the lighter weight, go for it!
 

Bill Cauley Jr

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They won’t ever be the norm for me until prices come down. I have ordered my first rifle with a carbon barrel to say I did it. I don’t foresee buying another for an up charge unless I’m blown away by weight and accuracy.
Mine is at the Smith being re-barreled with my third proof carbon fiber barrel I love the look the weight savings and they are very accurate
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C0E63C5E-EAC2-4F96-99BB-0883E374A525.jpeg
 

Bill Cauley Jr

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Good looking stick! I love those T2As. I’ve heard nothing but good things about the proofs so hopefully my 30 Nos lives up to it haha
I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised all three of mine were $729 which is expensive but I buy them like I stated for the looks of the weight savings and they are accurate but a little bling always cost a little more
 

A/C Guy

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I think they will become more popular in hunting rifles but not in competition type rifles. The light weight is harder to shoot tiny groups with. But steel will always be around and more popular, but by smaller margin.
The carbon fiber adds stiffness and rigidity to the barrel as well as consistent damping of the harmonics which results in a more consistent, thus more accurate barrel compared to a standard weight all steel barrel.
A carbon fiber wrapped barrel is an easy upgrade that vastly improves accuracy.
Guys are reporting 1/4 MOA 3 shot groups after careful load development. 1/2 MOA groups with factory target ammo.

The carbon fiber barrel dissipates heat 3 or 4 times faster than all steel, it has less thermal mass, both of which also contribute to improved consistency and accuracy.
A carbon fiber barrel can not rust, so it it the ultimate barrel for hunting. Coupled with a carbon fiber stock with appropriate bedding, it will last 10 times longer than a wood stocked standard hunting rifle.
I just made the switch, I bought a Christensen Ridgeline.

Christensen also makes a MSR with Al folding stock, carbon fiber barrel. I think we will see high end MSRs with all composite parts soon. The ultimate infantry rifle will have no metal parts to rust and weigh 3 lbs; give or take a few ounces.
 

26Reload

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A carbon fiber barrel can not rust, so it it the ultimate barrel for hunting.
Well...the carbon fiber won't rust..the metal can still rust..
I bought a 26" proof thru stockys..sendero lite..guess I was hoping for not only smaller diameter but less weight also...
My question on these c.f. barrels...if there is no "stretch" to the carbon fiber..being stronger than steel.why can't they make an even lighter barrel tapered even more to get down to a #3 or my noodle barrels..that would be my next purchase...thinner and lighter...
 

Rhovee

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They are not stiffer for weight when compared to steel. Trust me on this, if they had any accuracy, stiffness, barrel dampening effects, cooling effects, longer barrel life, people would be using them and winning in matches. I have not seen any top contenders in short range BR, long range BR, PRS, or any shooting competitions winning with CF barrels. A #4 fluted barrel weights the same as a proof sendero and has very close stiffness when Alex tested them for deflection. Biggest benefit is using larger breaks
 

A/C Guy

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They are not stiffer for weight when compared to steel. Trust me on this
I'll trust the engineers that design the stuff.
Carbon fiber is a material that offers stiffness and strength at low density – which is lighter than aluminium and steel, that provides many practical benefits. Weight for weight, carbon fiber offers 2 to 5 times more rigidity (depending on the fiber used) than aluminium and steel.
Multiple sources of REAL facts re: Carbon Fiber vs Steel
 

A/C Guy

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Well...the carbon fiber won't rust..the metal can still rust..
I was referring to the outside of the barrel which is where rust is a problem. I never heard of a barrel being so severely rusted in the bore that it was a problem. I know it is possible, but a hunter isn't going to leave his bore exposed whereas the barrel is constantly exposed. Keep it in context.
 

A/C Guy

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Extremely Informative Regarding Heat Conductivity

So...Is Carbon Fiber a good heat conductor?
As usual the answer is "it depends." The short answer is NO not when regular carbon fiber is made up in regular epoxy and expected to conduct heat across the thickness. IF a highly carbonized pan fiber with graphite or diamond added, is measured for heat transmission in the length of the fiber it is very good and can rival and exceed copper. Graphite is a common material for heat exchangers.
I find it interesting that they chose copper for the comparison. It turns out that copper is twice as conductive as aluminum (I never knew that) which is more than seven times as conductive as steel. So, the proper choice of carbon fiber can be as much as 14 to 1400 times (based upon the data in the chart in the linked article) a better conductor of heat than steel; depending on choice of CF.
Since Christensen started his career in the aerospace industry working with carbon fiber and his goal is to maximize stiffness and heat transfer, I bet that he has a "secret blend" of materials carefully selected for their specific physical properties.

Which Metals Conduct Heat The Best?
Common metals ranked by thermal conductivity
RankMetalThermal Conductivity [BTU/(hr·ft⋅°F)]
1Copper223
2Aluminum118
3Brass64
4Steel17
5Bronze15
 

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