Cooling a barrel 🤔

esorensen

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Apr 29, 2005
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149
Location
colorado
I’ll shoot 5 in a row of .223, maybe four in a row of “standard” type chamberings, then only two or three of magnums. I use a baterry powered “chamber chiller”. A guy in Austin makes them. Small, robust and effective. I don't need to worry about too much heat in the winters here in Colorado, the summers however…
 

RWE

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Oct 12, 2009
Messages
154
Location
Kentucky
I use a cordless portable air mattress inflator (from Amazon) and a surgical hose. It works MUCH better than just waiting around for a barrel to cool down. It's cheap, simple and fairly effective.
Did this after reading about the chamber coolers... had an inflatable mattress pump in the closet, tubing in shop from some kids thing. Works great
 

spin-one

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Jul 14, 2020
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78
Location
spring valley WI
Number one rule in my book is keep you barrel from heating up no matter what. Plenty of documentation on barrel life being maximized. I use cheap bait bucket battery powered aerator running tubing into chamber every three shots to bring back to ambient temps. Shooting P-dogs entirely different situation though!

Len has good break in discussion worth reading.
I agree, I never let my barrels heat up. I have a simple method but it works. I wet 3 small towels fold them 3 inches wide and freeze them. when i shoot I put the towels on a ice pack in a cooer. As the barrel heats up I lay these on top and rotate the towels as needed. Cools the barrel nicely
 

Betarider

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Oct 20, 2019
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102
Location
Morgantown,WV
Live in Az also, Wally World battery air mattress pump, hose and an old bore guide. Cools a barrel safely and quickly. Once at the range saw a guy rapidly shoot 20+ rounds from a 30-06, reached in his ice chest and throw a wet icy towel over the barrel. Ouch
Ever watch the show forged in fire 🔥 funny how the guy that cooled his knife in the water tank was the same guy that was with the broken knife when the testing part of the show came around 🙈 I say don't ever drop that gun you quencher it will shatter like glass!!
 

sbruni

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Nov 4, 2010
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439
Location
Texas... It's a whole other country
I used to do the painful 50 round shoot/clean break-in process until I talked to a former gunsmith for the Army marksmanship unit... they did extensive testing on pretty much all the methods recommended by the barrel manufacturers... their conclusion was that total round count varied by chambering but a barrel will break in in 100-150 rounds regardless of whether you use one of those approaches or just shoot and do your normal cleaning
 

Betarider

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Joined
Oct 20, 2019
Messages
102
Location
Morgantown,WV
I used to do the painful 50 round shoot/clean break-in process until I talked to a former gunsmith for the Army marksmanship unit... they did extensive testing on pretty much all the methods recommended by the barrel manufacturers... their conclusion was that total round count varied by chambering but a barrel will break in in 100-150 rounds regardless of whether you use one of those approaches or just shoot and do your normal cleaning
Do you suppose the army was going for a accurate gun or trying to prolong the life of their barrel? My guess is the former but if you want a longer barrel life paying attention to the break-in would be important. You can file something with a big course horse hoof raft or a fine fingernail file the choice is yours🤠
 

cabelasken

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Feb 22, 2021
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103
Location
Nevada
My custom rifle maker gave me this procedure for his newly installed barrels. Clean, shoot - repeat 10 to 12 times. then clean, shoot 3 shot groups - repeat 3 to 4 times. then your good to go. I did this for the three custom lightweight hunting rifles he made for me and they all can produce 1/2 MOA 5 shot 100 yd groups. That said, the custom 300 WSM took 100 rounds before it got under 1 MOA and nearly 200 rounds to get to under 1/2 MOA with identical loads. That barrel apparently had a manufacturing flaw that my rifle maker and I didn't see, but it is no longer there. I've seen this break in procedure or a similar version of it from many different sources, so I've been doing this for the past 25 years.

At the range on a hot day, I've draped a moist towel over the length of the barrel and let it sit for several minutes to cool a barrel. I've also used a computer cleaner aerosol spray to blow out the hot gasses from the receiver thru the barrel. I would not put anything too cold thru a hot barrel as I know when we stress relieve welds on pipelines, it is under a slow and controlled procedure, like under 200 degrees per hour.
 

MLN1963

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May 5, 2013
Messages
146
Ever watch the show forged in fire 🔥 funny how the guy that cooled his knife in the water tank was the same guy that was with the broken knife when the testing part of the show came around 🙈 I say don't ever drop that gun you quencher it will shatter like glass!!
I never have used water, I use air, but I don’t see how it is a such a terrible thing. Shooting a barrel we aren’t taking the temps that high. Wouldn’t taking a ice cold barrel and subjecting it to the instantaneous pressure and heat of firing a round be just as bad then?

Has there ever been any scientific testing to show it is harmful or not?
 

Mike Matteson

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Joined
Jun 26, 2017
Messages
1,144
After chambering a barrel I used the bore scope to view the results. There was a tiny "feather edge" on the lands of the throat. I shot one shot and looked again, it was gone. It is just an observation. As to how to break it in, do what the manufacturer says to do.

In 2007 I made a CO2 cooling system. Since then I have refined it. The picture shows a regulator. It is not necessary. Just a fitting with a ball valve is all that is needed. a 20 lb tank is minimum. The hose should be tapered at the chamber end for ease of sliding it into position. The CO2 is released with low flow. It only takes 20-30 seconds to reach ambient temp unless the barrel is quite hot. When I feel the barrel is approaching close to the same temp at the scope, the CO2 is turned off. It will continue to cool from inside out. Many at the range have adopted this system. In fact Dave Miller the gunsmith made one too.

I generally use the system if I am working up a load, only brought one rifle or it is during the hotter months.

Thanks for the info. I will have to build one. I have the tank. Just need to build or set the other parts. Would it be possible to get a better picture of the end going into the chamber? The other is using a ball value it would need to be high pressure. CO2 tanks start off at about 3000psi if I recall correctly.
 

RD57

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Joined
Oct 10, 2017
Messages
103
Location
East TN
An effective portable option is using a multi purpose duster sold in a compressed can for cleaning laptops, keyboards, computers, etc. Turn it upside down and hit the outside of the barrel. Use it right side up for hitting the chamber before using your battery operated blower. Long periods at the range or PD town are best suited to the CO2 tank. Run your tubing from the CO2 tank into a un-ported delrin bore guide for ease of application.
 

RockyMtnMT

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Mar 25, 2007
Messages
6,060
Location
Montana
I don't know about anyone else, but I have never shot a barrel to the point of glowing red so that contact with water would change the molecular structure of the steel. I never shoot to the point that I can't hold on to the barrel with a bare hand. I have had my rifle get hotter sitting in the sun than I have ever made a rifle hot from shooting.

I'm not too worried about "quenching" my barrel.
 

Cwray5

Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2013
Messages
21
Recently saw a barrel cooler $55 Amazon also read articles on ice water with a plastic syringe and a small hose followed by dry patches. Also Utah long range shooters tells me there's no such thing as barrel break in simply shoot it and don't look back gun work says the opposite Weatherby says the opposite. Serious push me pull me affect ie: who's right and who's wrong?? I've got all the right equipment no knowledge of the subject. Any advice?? Simply going to be test driving a new barrel for several rounds in the summer heat.
I have used the MagnitoSpeed Barrel cooler. They are about $55, the downside is they use 123 batteries and a couple of hours.

As far as barrel break in from my understanding is that you need to follow factory recommendations. Some barrels are hand lapped and do not need break in some are not and need barrel break in.
 
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