Carbon barrels

338 dude

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If Bartlein doesn’t have one ready to ship bugholes.com may. A 7 twist isn’t really standard but the 8 is likely in stock. Greg and Russ are good folks and get large shipments of barrels monthly.
bugholesw.com is a great place to shop Greg has re-barreled my 338 twice now
 

JMGamesniper19

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Let me add another thought. One of the comments was around heat and POI shift under high rates of fire.
Gonna take PRS style shooting out of the equation for a moment and insert some rationale thinking around a hunting rifle.

Before you shoot make sure every single bolt and ring is torqued to exact specs and make sure the rifle is working correctly mechanically. Cannot tell you how many times I have had calls from guys saying the rifle doesn't shoot; turns out a bolt or two improperly torqued has been the issue and all of a sudden the rifle shoots.
In a hunting rifle the most important shot is the first cold bore and perhaps then a follow up where the barrel is warm but rarely anywhere near max heat tolerance. Then, are you shooting hand loads or factory. If you are shooting factory, your tolerances and your POI shift may be more prominent. Factory ammo has come along way in the past few years but if you measure it, there are always 1 or 2 in a box that are out of spec.

At the range: Shoot groups of 2 instead of groups of 3 or 5 or 9 etc... Why? How many times do you shoot at an animal 3 times in 20 seconds, or 15 times in 90 seconds???
  • First shot is going to be cold bore and should be perfect, or as close as you can get.
  • If you need a follow up it will likely come within 10 seconds or perhaps faster. Shoot #2 ten seconds after #1 and see where it hits. Rarely will your barrel heat up to its maximum capability and POI shift should not be an issue, handloads should land within the tightest tolerance your rifle and YOU are capable of.
Mimic this sequence a few times and see where your 2 shot group lands. Then, let your barrel completely cool and do it again, then again etc...until you are 100% confident in the barrel. Then, do some jumping jacks, maybe some push ups, or maybe run around for 90 seconds and get your heart rate up and do it all again. This will tell you how you need to operate in the field. If you want to challenge yourself even more, then move to 300 yards, then 500, then 700 etc...until you reach your maximum shot distance where you can keep sub MOA and confidently kill that critter. Then in the field, subtract 20% and that is your max field hunting tolerance. It will always be shorter in the field
 

jgs8163

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My proofs all shoot excellent. IMO the only significant gain is some weight reduction in a larger profile barrel. I also have a couple of all steel Kriegers and Rock Creek barrels that are as good if not better but they weigh more even though they’re a lighter profile barrel than the proofs.
 

JMGamesniper19

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If he likes them, I like them. Had 1 Proof and it shot well, but the Bartlein Carbon barrel is an absolute tack driver as are all the Bartleins usually
Love George and he has not been a proponent of carbon at any point in his career until now. Why, cause they all shoot now and they are all good barrels. Why can I say that, cause other than the 1 outlier bad barrel everyone talks about from whoever, if a rifle shoots under 1/2 MOA, the rifle, the barrel, the ammo and the shooter are all high quality.
 

seattleman1969

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  • POI shift is a variable action that can only be controlled in a jig, unless you are seeing something wild. Most people who think they see POI shift find out its not the rifle barrel in most cases, unless you are shooting a #2 contour in high rates of fire and then yeah, you are going to see significant POI shift. Lots of variable. Can carbon barrels POI shift yes and in the early days of building, say anything before about 2014, they did. Now, its pretty rare unless you are shooting ALOT and at a high rate of speed
I can personally vouch for this shooting a 300WSM in a #2... painful. Worst POI shift ever. So bad that I sold the rifle. I tried everything to control it except changing the barrel, nothing worked. Action bedding, full length bedding, different stock, proper action and scope ring torque... I was blaming the scopes for a while but it turned out it was not the scopes at all. I would not call it high rates of fire either, just normal 3-5 shot strings from the bench on moderately cool days (mid 30-40s). The only way I could ever get consistency was full cool down between shots.

@JMGamesniper19 Your second post above, #30, expounded right into this... I'll shut up now!
 

HTJ

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Lets set some baseline constants before we delve into the question specifically. In order to explain it fully I would have to write a 6 page response so not gonna happen, know I am speaking from personal carbon barrel building experience gained in working with one of the most prominent carbon barrel makers in the U.S.
  • Carbon fiber is 5x lighter and 2x stronger than steel
  • Carbon barrels are a wrap around the outside of a steel liner. Wraps can vary, process can vary, the thickness of the steel barrel liner can vary, type of carbon used can vary - there are about 50 different types of carbon that can be used in a barrel.
  • Carbon barrels create a stiffer and more repeatable barrel signature through the firing process, carbon doesn't wear out like steel and with the right build process, will move heat away from the center of the barrel faster than a steel barrel of the same contour - less "barrel whip" over time - a sendero carbon barrel is going to be stiffer than a #4 steel barrel and have less barrel whip
  • All Carbon barrels are glued together and also to the steel barrel liner. The "glue" or resin can come from 30 different places and can have varying stiffness and heat resistant properties - hence varied barrel processes and build types - ability to contorl and move heat
  • Carbon barrels theoretically have less POI shift than a steel barrel under higher heat conditions, due to many of the properties I laid out above
  • POI shift is a variable action that can only be controlled in a jig, unless you are seeing something wild. Most people who think they see POI shift find out its not the rifle barrel in most cases, unless you are shooting a #2 contour in high rates of fire and then yeah, you are going to see significant POI shift. Lots of variable. Can carbon barrels POI shift yes and in the early days of building, say anything before about 2014, they did. Now, its pretty rare unless you are shooting ALOT and at a high rate of speed.
  • PRS shooters use both carbon and steel barrels. There is no rhyme or reason who shoots what frankly, its about what is accurate and repeatable (its also about if they are sponsored or buying the barrel yourself) so if they arent worried too much about day to day POI, should you be?
So, to talk about any barrel having more or less POI shift is inherent to the barrel manufacturing process and how it moves heat compared to the stiffness of the barrel; also how the resin or overall stiffness of the barrel remains constant due to heat. We are talking about constant heat above 200 degrees or so . The more heat, the more POI Shift in basic terms, up to a point that the barrel begins to melt. The carbon doesnt melt, the resin holding it together begins to melt. Every single barrel manufacturer is chasing the holy grail of making a carbon barrel that will survive the heat from a crew served automatic weapon for the military. No one is there yet.

To say that barrel from maker A shifts more or less than a barrel from maker B is a one time personal experience that has too many variables to say that every single barrel from either maker is susceptible to POI shift more or less. Just like steel, it is an individual barrel issue.
I personally have carbon barrels from multiple makers and all of them shoot. That said, I have also had a bad barrel from one of them, it was too tight and created too much pressure and I had to return it.

IMO and IME, any barrel will shoot accurately in the right conditions, with the right load, and with the right shooter behind it. Steel, carbon, whatever. That same barrel might not shoot in the wrong conditions with the wrong load and the wrong person behind it. So if you have the money and need to save the weight, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to expect less POI shift under high rates of continual fire at high heat, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to go to the range and shoot 25 rounds in an hour and then take that rifle hunting, and shoot maybe 2 times more, you may not need a carbon barrel.
Thank
Lets set some baseline constants before we delve into the question specifically. In order to explain it fully I would have to write a 6 page response so not gonna happen, know I am speaking from personal carbon barrel building experience gained in working with one of the most prominent carbon barrel makers in the U.S.
  • Carbon fiber is 5x lighter and 2x stronger than steel
  • Carbon barrels are a wrap around the outside of a steel liner. Wraps can vary, process can vary, the thickness of the steel barrel liner can vary, type of carbon used can vary - there are about 50 different types of carbon that can be used in a barrel.
  • Carbon barrels create a stiffer and more repeatable barrel signature through the firing process, carbon doesn't wear out like steel and with the right build process, will move heat away from the center of the barrel faster than a steel barrel of the same contour - less "barrel whip" over time - a sendero carbon barrel is going to be stiffer than a #4 steel barrel and have less barrel whip
  • All Carbon barrels are glued together and also to the steel barrel liner. The "glue" or resin can come from 30 different places and can have varying stiffness and heat resistant properties - hence varied barrel processes and build types - ability to contorl and move heat
  • Carbon barrels theoretically have less POI shift than a steel barrel under higher heat conditions, due to many of the properties I laid out above
  • POI shift is a variable action that can only be controlled in a jig, unless you are seeing something wild. Most people who think they see POI shift find out its not the rifle barrel in most cases, unless you are shooting a #2 contour in high rates of fire and then yeah, you are going to see significant POI shift. Lots of variable. Can carbon barrels POI shift yes and in the early days of building, say anything before about 2014, they did. Now, its pretty rare unless you are shooting ALOT and at a high rate of speed.
  • PRS shooters use both carbon and steel barrels. There is no rhyme or reason who shoots what frankly, its about what is accurate and repeatable (its also about if they are sponsored or buying the barrel yourself) so if they arent worried too much about day to day POI, should you be?
So, to talk about any barrel having more or less POI shift is inherent to the barrel manufacturing process and how it moves heat compared to the stiffness of the barrel; also how the resin or overall stiffness of the barrel remains constant due to heat. We are talking about constant heat above 200 degrees or so . The more heat, the more POI Shift in basic terms, up to a point that the barrel begins to melt. The carbon doesnt melt, the resin holding it together begins to melt. Every single barrel manufacturer is chasing the holy grail of making a carbon barrel that will survive the heat from a crew served automatic weapon for the military. No one is there yet.

To say that barrel from maker A shifts more or less than a barrel from maker B is a one time personal experience that has too many variables to say that every single barrel from either maker is susceptible to POI shift more or less. Just like steel, it is an individual barrel issue.
I personally have carbon barrels from multiple makers and all of them shoot. That said, I have also had a bad barrel from one of them, it was too tight and created too much pressure and I had to return it.

IMO and IME, any barrel will shoot accurately in the right conditions, with the right load, and with the right shooter behind it. Steel, carbon, whatever. That same barrel might not shoot in the wrong conditions with the wrong load and the wrong person behind it. So if you have the money and need to save the weight, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to expect less POI shift under high rates of continual fire at high heat, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to go to the range and shoot 25 rounds in an hour and then take that rifle hunting, and shoot maybe 2 times more, you may not need a carbon barrel.
Thank you for that information. Wry helpful. I am doing a build currently and debated
Lets set some baseline constants before we delve into the question specifically. In order to explain it fully I would have to write a 6 page response so not gonna happen, know I am speaking from personal carbon barrel building experience gained in working with one of the most prominent carbon barrel makers in the U.S.
  • Carbon fiber is 5x lighter and 2x stronger than steel
  • Carbon barrels are a wrap around the outside of a steel liner. Wraps can vary, process can vary, the thickness of the steel barrel liner can vary, type of carbon used can vary - there are about 50 different types of carbon that can be used in a barrel.
  • Carbon barrels create a stiffer and more repeatable barrel signature through the firing process, carbon doesn't wear out like steel and with the right build process, will move heat away from the center of the barrel faster than a steel barrel of the same contour - less "barrel whip" over time - a sendero carbon barrel is going to be stiffer than a #4 steel barrel and have less barrel whip
  • All Carbon barrels are glued together and also to the steel barrel liner. The "glue" or resin can come from 30 different places and can have varying stiffness and heat resistant properties - hence varied barrel processes and build types - ability to contorl and move heat
  • Carbon barrels theoretically have less POI shift than a steel barrel under higher heat conditions, due to many of the properties I laid out above
  • POI shift is a variable action that can only be controlled in a jig, unless you are seeing something wild. Most people who think they see POI shift find out its not the rifle barrel in most cases, unless you are shooting a #2 contour in high rates of fire and then yeah, you are going to see significant POI shift. Lots of variable. Can carbon barrels POI shift yes and in the early days of building, say anything before about 2014, they did. Now, its pretty rare unless you are shooting ALOT and at a high rate of speed.
  • PRS shooters use both carbon and steel barrels. There is no rhyme or reason who shoots what frankly, its about what is accurate and repeatable (its also about if they are sponsored or buying the barrel yourself) so if they arent worried too much about day to day POI, should you be?
So, to talk about any barrel having more or less POI shift is inherent to the barrel manufacturing process and how it moves heat compared to the stiffness of the barrel; also how the resin or overall stiffness of the barrel remains constant due to heat. We are talking about constant heat above 200 degrees or so . The more heat, the more POI Shift in basic terms, up to a point that the barrel begins to melt. The carbon doesnt melt, the resin holding it together begins to melt. Every single barrel manufacturer is chasing the holy grail of making a carbon barrel that will survive the heat from a crew served automatic weapon for the military. No one is there yet.

To say that barrel from maker A shifts more or less than a barrel from maker B is a one time personal experience that has too many variables to say that every single barrel from either maker is susceptible to POI shift more or less. Just like steel, it is an individual barrel issue.
I personally have carbon barrels from multiple makers and all of them shoot. That said, I have also had a bad barrel from one of them, it was too tight and created too much pressure and I had to return it.

IMO and IME, any barrel will shoot accurately in the right conditions, with the right load, and with the right shooter behind it. Steel, carbon, whatever. That same barrel might not shoot in the wrong conditions with the wrong load and the wrong person behind it. So if you have the money and need to save the weight, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to expect less POI shift under high rates of continual fire at high heat, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to go to the range and shoot 25 rounds in an hour and then take that rifle hunting, and shoot maybe 2 times more, you may not need a carbon barrel.
Thanks for the info very helpful. I am currently doing a build and debated on carbon vs steel. I stayed with steel. It seemed that the weight of the carbon was no different than a #4 contour flutted steel bbl?? I’ve always used match grade bbls and never have had issues with POI. I don’t heat up my bbls yo that point at least try not to here in south tx. Thanks
 

parshal

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Apr 29, 2002
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Colorado
I’ve had about 5 Proof carbons and a couple steel. I’ve had a lot of Bartlein steel and one carbon. All have shot about the same. None appreciably sped up. The Bartlein carbon cleans crazy easy but is the only one where I did a break-in procedure.

I ran a proof in 65SS at an NRL Hunter match a month or so ago and it was fine. I then ran it at an ELR match and it was not. Once it warmed up it was all over the place. Other shooters there had experienced that with carbon barrels before. Mind you, at these matches you’re shooting a max of 8 rounds at a stage with significant time to cool between stages.

Even with the above experience I’ll continue to use carbon on my hunting guns where weight is a factor and I want to run a suppressor.
 

JMGamesniper19

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I can personally vouch for this shooting a 300WSM in a #2... painful. Worst POI shift ever. So bad that I sold the rifle. I tried everything to control it except changing the barrel, nothing worked. Action bedding, full length bedding, different stock, proper action and scope ring torque... I was blaming the scopes for a while but it turned out it was not the scopes at all. I would not call it high rates of fire either, just normal 3-5 shot strings from the bench on moderately cool days (mid 30-40s). The only way I could ever get consistency was full cool down between shots.
I hear you, weight matters. A #2 contour was never going to stay true under high rates of fire cause it is not supposed to. A #2 is a pure lightweight hunt set up. A shot or two here and there and thats it. IME anything thinner than a #4 should not have the expectation of being highly accurate under high rates of fire.
My recommendation is that if you are planning on buying a high end rifle and have expectations of using it for both hunting and PRS style strings of fire, a shorter #4 fluted or thicker longer barrel, say a #6 fluted should be the way to go. PRS Shooters don't really care if their rifle weighs 2 lbs more than it could, they care about ultimate accuracy and usually shoot heavier contours. The only way to get both weight savings and PRS rates of fire reliably is to shoot carbon. Only then can you have any expectation that the barrel will support what you are trying to do.
 

Bullwhacker

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Feb 9, 2014
Messages
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SE Idaho
The only carbon barrels I’ve owned have been 3 Proofs. All 3 took a ridiculous number of rounds to quit creeping on velocity, 150-200 rounds. They were extremely frustrating doing load work for and watching pressure spike every other trip to the range with loads that were fine the trip before. They shoot well but I’ll be trying Bartlein next then Carbonsix.
 

seattleman1969

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Oct 3, 2014
Messages
321
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Missoula, Mt
Overall this thread is very interesting to me, I have been considering a rebarrel for a 30-06 to 280AI Carbonsix for a while. I am glad to see some good reviews here. I love my 30-06, but I want something a little speedier/lighter
 

esshup

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Mar 23, 2008
Messages
768
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N. Central Indiana
"Carbon barrels create a stiffer and more repeatable barrel signature through the firing process, carbon doesn't wear out like steel and with the right build process, will move heat away from the center of the barrel faster than a steel barrel of the same contour - less "barrel whip" over time - a sendero carbon barrel is going to be stiffer than a #4 steel barrel and have less barrel whip"

The only issue that I have with this is the comment "Carbon doesn't wear out like steel". In my way of thinking, since Carbon isn't coming in contact with the bullet, there is no "wearing out" process that we have to be concerned about. We still have to be concerned about carbon steel barrels "wearing out" because the steel liner is in contact with the bullet, just like in a steel/stainless steel barrel.

Or is my thinking flawed?

I really like Carbon Steel barrels for the light weight and stiffness that they have. I am not doing any long strings of shooting, I am either target shooting or hunting, with the emphasis on hunting.
 

Muledeerhuntingfreak

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Sep 26, 2019
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Washington
I live a few miles from benchmark here in Washington State everybody I know has had really good luck with their barrels being good for long range and accurate just follow their instructions on breaking and develop your ammo and you have a very nice rifle that is the barrel I am going after for my 7:00 a.m. remag
 

SSG Graybush

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Winchester VA
Lets set some baseline constants before we delve into the question specifically. In order to explain it fully I would have to write a 6 page response so not gonna happen, know I am speaking from personal carbon barrel building experience gained in working with one of the most prominent carbon barrel makers in the U.S.
  • Carbon fiber is 5x lighter and 2x stronger than steel
  • Carbon barrels are a wrap around the outside of a steel liner. Wraps can vary, process can vary, the thickness of the steel barrel liner can vary, type of carbon used can vary - there are about 50 different types of carbon that can be used in a barrel.
  • Carbon barrels create a stiffer and more repeatable barrel signature through the firing process, carbon doesn't wear out like steel and with the right build process, will move heat away from the center of the barrel faster than a steel barrel of the same contour - less "barrel whip" over time - a sendero carbon barrel is going to be stiffer than a #4 steel barrel and have less barrel whip
  • All Carbon barrels are glued together and also to the steel barrel liner. The "glue" or resin can come from 30 different places and can have varying stiffness and heat resistant properties - hence varied barrel processes and build types - ability to contorl and move heat
  • Carbon barrels theoretically have less POI shift than a steel barrel under higher heat conditions, due to many of the properties I laid out above
  • POI shift is a variable action that can only be controlled in a jig, unless you are seeing something wild. Most people who think they see POI shift find out its not the rifle barrel in most cases, unless you are shooting a #2 contour in high rates of fire and then yeah, you are going to see significant POI shift. Lots of variable. Can carbon barrels POI shift yes and in the early days of building, say anything before about 2014, they did. Now, its pretty rare unless you are shooting ALOT and at a high rate of speed.
  • PRS shooters use both carbon and steel barrels. There is no rhyme or reason who shoots what frankly, its about what is accurate and repeatable (its also about if they are sponsored or buying the barrel yourself) so if they arent worried too much about day to day POI, should you be?
So, to talk about any barrel having more or less POI shift is inherent to the barrel manufacturing process and how it moves heat compared to the stiffness of the barrel; also how the resin or overall stiffness of the barrel remains constant due to heat. We are talking about constant heat above 200 degrees or so . The more heat, the more POI Shift in basic terms, up to a point that the barrel begins to melt. The carbon doesnt melt, the resin holding it together begins to melt. Every single barrel manufacturer is chasing the holy grail of making a carbon barrel that will survive the heat from a crew served automatic weapon for the military. No one is there yet.

To say that barrel from maker A shifts more or less than a barrel from maker B is a one time personal experience that has too many variables to say that every single barrel from either maker is susceptible to POI shift more or less. Just like steel, it is an individual barrel issue.
I personally have carbon barrels from multiple makers and all of them shoot. That said, I have also had a bad barrel from one of them, it was too tight and created too much pressure and I had to return it.

IMO and IME, any barrel will shoot accurately in the right conditions, with the right load, and with the right shooter behind it. Steel, carbon, whatever. That same barrel might not shoot in the wrong conditions with the wrong load and the wrong person behind it. So if you have the money and need to save the weight, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to expect less POI shift under high rates of continual fire at high heat, get a carbon barrel. If you are going to go to the range and shoot 25 rounds in an hour and then take that rifle hunting, and shoot maybe 2 times more, you may not need a carbon barrel.
I think a CF barrel is good cutting weight. Thats all. For PRS I wanted a heavy rifle so I got a Criterion MTU profile SS barrel. For a lightweight elk rifle I used a OMR CF prefit. Both are .3 at 100 and sub moa at 1000. But the SS barrel has zero poi shift from a clean cold bore, zero. Best barrel Ive ever seen in that aspect. I wouldnt run a CF in PRS, the mirage gets bad fast coming off the barrel. But in fairness my CF is a 7mag compared to the SS is a 6XC. I agree that thickness creates stiffness, and stiffness probably creates better/wider harmonic nodes but imo CF isnt the be all end all barrel. And I wouldnt put a CF on a target rifle where weight is a plus.
 
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SilentHero

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Sep 12, 2020
Messages
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Phoenix, AZ
I’ve got two Carbon6’s in order as we speak. First is a 300wm and the second a 280ai. The customization they offered was awesome. Considering I’m a noob, I hope I do my part to do then justice. I’ll be shooting factory for now since we are full time RVers traveling the country. Once I land and get a house built, then I can start with reloading. Love the discussion gentlemen!
 
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