clean barrel...bad accuracy

magedon44

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Hey everyone..I'm new to the long range hunting
..I posted some pics of my tikka 300 wsm awhile back shooting very well. Recently its been shooting awesome for me anyways... at 400 yds I was usually within 3.25 Inch group. The only cleaning.of the barrel I do is with a bore snake...the other night I loaded.some virgin brass I didn't expect great groups because its not.fire formed......but anyways I was inspecting my gun and saw some copper in the barrel. .so I ran hopped #9 solvent and a copper brush...followed by 10 dry patches..but when I went to shoot my next few rounds the gun has started shooting the worst it ever has and I'm wondering if it's because the barrel is not as dirty as it once was or because the Virgin brass I just wanted to see if any of you guys have had a terrible accuracy with a clean Barrel...my groups at 400 yards were about 9 inches! What did I do wrong???
 

ICANHITHIMMAN

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Hey everyone..I'm new to the long range hunting
..I posted some pics of my tikka 300 wsm awhile back shooting very well. Recently its been shooting awesome for me anyways... at 400 yds I was usually within 3.25 Inch group. The only cleaning.of the barrel I do is with a bore snake...the other night I loaded.some virgin brass I didn't expect great groups because its not.fire formed......but anyways I was inspecting my gun and saw some copper in the barrel. .so I ran hopped #9 solvent and a copper brush...followed by 10 dry patches..but when I went to shoot my next few rounds the gun has started shooting the worst it ever has and I'm wondering if it's because the barrel is not as dirty as it once was or because the Virgin brass I just wanted to see if any of you guys have had a terrible accuracy with a clean Barrel...my groups at 400 yards were about 9 inches! What did I do wrong???
Why did you take the copper out? That is most likly the issue new brass may be a factor but as long as all case prep was done and you have been full length sizing your reloads it should not have been very significant.

As a general rule dont remove the copper untill accuracy starts to decline just powder. But you learned something be sure to make a not of how many rounds it takes to get your accuracy back. All this stuff is very important in knowing your rifle and preventing future issues.
 

magedon44

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I took it out cuz I thought it may damage barrel being in there.. I learned my.lesson!
 

ICANHITHIMMAN

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oh well no harm in that thinking this time, it tends to uniform our bores fill in tooling marks and such not. Very good for accuracy most of the time. The reason a lot of guys do a barrel brake in is to try to smooth out these little pits so the barrel fowles less.
 

magedon44

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I can still see some copper I didn't get...in general...how many shots do u think it will take to replace it
...I know each gun is different

.300 wsm...hornady sst 180s
 

ICANHITHIMMAN

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I can still see some copper I didn't get...in general...how many shots do u think it will take to replace it
...I know each gun is different

.300 wsm...hornady sst 180s
I could never awnser that you said it your self there all diffrent. You are just going to have to shoot it and see assuming you changed nothing else. Make sure to write it down in your data book.
 

BearDog

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If you dont mind sitting through the video, this guy starts talking about having copper in the barrel and how often, if ever, he cleans it. I typically strip my copper if I am not going to be shooting for awhile, like after hunting season.


 
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Wheatgerm

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Im also pretty new to shooting long range, but in my recent experience I had the exact opposite problem as you. I was working up a new load and having horrible luck with it, I had about 150 rounds threw the gun and as soon as I stripped the copper out it went from 4 inch groups to sub MOA groups. I clean my gun fully now every night after I've gone out shooting. And I have learned my cold bore shots are spot on with the following shots.

Just like has been said above. Every rifle is different just have to go with what your barrel likes
 

SBruce

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As you said, you didn't completely get all the copper out. IME, Hoppes #9 wont remove it. There are special copper solvents that will remove the copper fouling.

Even with the strong stuff, it takes time or alot of patching to get a barrel completely copper free. Your problem could still be copper fouling.

Guess if it were me; I'd clean it down to bare metal (copper solvent soaked patches no longer showing any blue/green color.........or very little at least), and then go shoot. Paying attention to how many rounds it takes to shoot in good again, and how many additional rounds it takes to start throwing fliers.

If it simply wont shoot good, even after 50 rounds, then you have another problem.
 

Dr. Vette

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As you said, you didn't completely get all the copper out. IME, Hoppes #9 wont remove it. There are special copper solvents that will remove the copper fouling.

Even with the strong stuff, it takes time or alot of patching to get a barrel completely copper free. Your problem could still be copper fouling.

Guess if it were me; I'd clean it down to bare metal (copper solvent soaked patches no longer showing any blue/green color.........or very little at least), and then go shoot. Paying attention to how many rounds it takes to shoot in good again, and how many additional rounds it takes to start throwing fliers.

If it simply wont shoot good, even after 50 rounds, then you have another problem.
What he said.

I've had to use 3 evenings and a lot of patches to clean a rifle that was really dirty. Once clean it shoots wonderfully now and is one of my most accurate rifles. Personally I use the products from BoreTech and they work very well. I don't think there is even a bottle of Hoppe's #9 in the house.
 

J E Custom

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Some will disagree with this but the best a barrel can shoot is when its clean.

A clean barrel is as good as it will ever be because fouling is not consistantly applied and
shot to shot consistency (SDs) will not be as good.

This is not to say that "your/A" load will not shoot better in a fouled barrel if you work up the
load under these conditions.

I believe in working up loads in a clean barrel (I Clean between test loads after break in is complete)
and find that the test loads provide better data. A fouled barrel skews the data and even though you
may find a decent load other loads may shoot terrible.

A clean barrel seems to be more forgiving as to what you put through it also.

As other posters have stated; Clean the barrel back to bright metal, shoot your test loads to see
what the barrel does as you shoot (When accuracy falls off) and you will know when to clean.

Most custom barrels start to degrade in the 4 to 9 shot range. factory barrels are a different
beast all together and need more break in and fouling is more of a problem, so you just have
to experiment with them.

Some people like to season a barrel ((Foul a barrel until it will group) and even though the
groups are good, you will never find out how good the barrel really is.

J E CUSTOM
 

SidecarFlip

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What he said.

I've had to use 3 evenings and a lot of patches to clean a rifle that was really dirty. Once clean it shoots wonderfully now and is one of my most accurate rifles. Personally I use the products from BoreTech and they work very well. I don't think there is even a bottle of Hoppe's #9 in the house.
...............But it smells so good.......:)

If you can afford one, a bore scope is the only way to fly (clean/check for deposits of copper, powder and carbon plus check the throat for erosion.

In reality, if you can't see in there, do you really know if it's clean or not, what condition the rifling is in or what the crown looks like? Not really. Cleaning becomes a crapshoot because you don't actually know if it's cleaned properly or not and you certainly have no idea what the bore looks like inside, if it's heat checked, if it has tooling marks (that degrade accuracy)....

I realize a good borescope isn't a cheap date but is costs no more than a medium priced LR optic and certainly less than a new rifle. I use mine for many things besides guns.

BTW, Hoppes will pull copper. It's just not as agressive as some others.

Lots of theories abound but you really don't know what the condition is because you can't see in there. Sort of like a blind man feeling his way along.....:rolleyes:
 

TannerGun

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Why would you clean the tube if you're shooting sub Minute groups at 400 yards?
 

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