Optimum Lightweight Barrel for Suppressor

jrock

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I'm looking for some input on ultralight rifles with suppressors. Since this is a LR forum, lets begin the discussion by saying we are using a magnum cartridge for LR hunting on elk sized game to 1000 yards. I'd like the weight to be <6.5 lbs without suppressor.

For magnums, I like 26" barrels. I think they are the best bang for the buck. Weight wise, a light contour is only 1 oz/inch at the muzzle. A few more extra inches doesn't add much weight but adds a lot of speed. CF barrels are 2x the price but do they really add that much in-field value with a suppressor? If one zeros the gun with the suppressor on, then the POI shift between suppressed and unsuppressed really doesn't matter right?
 

jpd676

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You are getting pretty specific with what you want. Suppressors can change the POI a ton but some don't. I have a Thunderbeast Ultra 9 and my 300 rum and 300 prc don't change at all with the suppressor. I have other suppressors that change the POI an MOA or more when they are put on. I don't see you getting a sub 6.5 pound rifle without a carbon barrel. My light weight magnum is a Seekins Havak (7.5 lbs ish) with my Thunderbeast. If you get too light, it is hard to stay accurate at long range (at least for me).
 

codyadams

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The problem with long skinny barrels in a magnum caliber running supressed is you simply may not have enough meat to have proper thread diameter for the bore as well as a proper shoulder for a supressor. This is from J E Custom, on MINIMUM muzzle diameter by caliber for threading. Keep in mind, this is not including a shoulder at all, this is literally the minimum diameter that you could safely thread if you say, seated a brake on the muzzle -

.224 bore = .563 muzzle diameter
.244 bore = .584 muzzle diameter
.257 bore = .597 muzzle diameter
.264 bore = .604 muzzle diameter
.277 bore = .617 muzzle diameter
.284 bore = .624 muzzle diameter
.308 bore = .648 muzzle diameter
.323 bore = .663 muzzle diameter
.338 bore = .678 muzzle diameter

Now, find the largest thread you can do on that diameter, add in whatever the supressor manufacturers recommendation is for minimum shoulder, and you now have your minimum muzzle diameter. If your going with anything much over 6.5, your not going to have a skinny barrel, or a long barrel. Now you can order a custom contour, that has the last 2" of muzzle expand to proper diameter, but if you want a traditional contour barrel, it is a case of "you can't have your cake and eat it too". You have to compromise somewhere, whether it is barrel length (to get a larger diameter muzzle with the lighter contours), barrel contour, whether you go bigger or have a custom contour made, or go carbon fiber, which is a good way of getting your minimum diameter and still staying light.

We ran the numbers on a minimum barrel contour for a .270 Sherman, and we came up with a McGowen #3 contour @25", couldn't go much smaller than that.

So your options are, short barrel for proper diameter @ light contour, long barrel with heavy contour and deal with weight, custom contour with flared muzzle, or carbon fiber.

Now, there is one more option you may want to look into. LRI (Long Rifles Inc) offers a fluting service/pattern (pattern x) that takes off significant weight, I'll post a picture of what they did. If you wanted to look into that, here is what I would do. Figure out the weight of all the rest of your components, and see how much room you have left for the barrel. Then call LRI and see what is the largest contour barrel @26" that they could get into your requirements.

Hope this is helpful, and good luck.
Screenshot_20201124-100256_Samsung Internet.jpg
 

jrock

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I'm getting specific because most other forums opt for short barrels when the word 'suppressor' is mentioned. Short barrel and magnum don't seem to go together in my mind. I'd like to see if there is a more balanced opinion here.

I've run some numbers on part weights and a CF barrel might be tough to get below 6.5 lbs. A steel barrel might be closer to 6 lbs but the contour may have to be flared at the muzzle or fluted (which adds cost). I left shootablity off the list to try and prevent rabbit trails.

As I mentioned, is POI shift really an "issue" if one does not plan to remove it while hunting? Just seeing what other people think is a good balance without sacrificing terminal performance.
 

codyadams

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Not exactly the same situation, but you can see what I mean here about the custom flared muzzle contour to keep weight down but also run a brake/supressor. Photo credit to Bravo 4, this is his rifle.
CF9C003A-6DF6-47EE-AD71-82D2303B9BD1.jpeg.jpg
 

codyadams

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I'm getting specific because most other forums opt for short barrels when the word 'suppressor' is mentioned. Short barrel and magnum don't seem to go together in my mind. I'd like to see if there is a more balanced opinion here.

I've run some numbers on part weights and a CF barrel might be tough to get below 6.5 lbs. A steel barrel might be closer to 6 lbs but the contour may have to be flared at the muzzle or fluted (which adds cost). I left shootablity off the list to try and prevent rabbit trails.

As I mentioned, is POI shift really an "issue" if one does not plan to remove it while hunting? Just seeing what other people think is a good balance without sacrificing terminal performance.
Your asking a lot, which is fine, but it does make cost go up, no way around it. If you don't want carbon fiber, you do want a 26", and you want under 6.5 lbs, and you do want to run supressed, the only way I see it possible is by doing a custom contour like the rifle above with a flared muzzle, and possibly flutting as well. Barrel makers will charge a fee to custom contour as well as flute, it is easily done with a phone call to the barrel manufacturer of your choice, however price would be approaching or exceeding that of a carbon barrel, however you would very likely be much lighter than a cf barrel and get exactly what you want.

With such a contour, you would likely have a POI change supressed vs not, but as you said, if you keep the can on for hunting, it is a non issue. My cousin does the same for his rifle, it has a nearly 3" shift with the YHM resinator, but it is of little concern as it wears the can while hunting.
 

Kimber7man

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When you consider that a sub 6.5 lb LR rifle will most likely require a 28-32 ounce stock and a lightweight scope that dials and tracks perfectly, you most likely will have to concede on other things like action type and barrel length/weight. Or spend big 🦌

Then again, it’s just money....
 

jrock

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The stock shapes I'm interested in are <24 oz. Action would be a Defiance AnTi or skeletonized rem 700. Its doable and I think I can do it cheaper than a Proof MTR...even than Redhawk's killer sale a while ago. Barrel is what is really holding me up. I want to keep the build light to compensate a bit for the suppressor. I have a Zeiss V4 and they are pretty good on the weight:features ratio.
 

codyadams

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The stock shapes I'm interested in are <24 oz. Action would be a Defiance AnTi or skeletonized rem 700. Its doable and I think I can do it cheaper than a Proof MTR...even than Redhawk's killer sale a while ago. Barrel is what is really holding me up. I want to keep the build light to compensate a bit for the suppressor. I have a Zeiss V4 and they are pretty good on the weight:features ratio.
With those components your on the right track. I have the exact action you speak of, an anTI long action magnum bolt face, very nice. It's for my wife's 7 max. It will have a 20" spiral fluted steel sendero contour, after comparing a proof sendero lite to a spiral fluted 20" steel barrel of the same contour, the savings is only about 5 ounces, less if I went with a bartlien carbon barrel as they tend to be heavier. The steel barrel will be 2 lb 15ish oz, a proof carbon about 2 lb 10 oz. With the 12.5" LOP Manners EH-1 coming in at 30 oz, aluminum pinned rail, light weight rings, and a 25 oz Leupold Mark 5 HD 3.6-18x44, aluminum PTG BDL floorplate and a 10" arca plate on bottom, it will come out just at or under 9 lbs ready to hunt, and really compact.
 
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