Stainless or CM?

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by herr1911, Sep 19, 2010.

  1. herr1911

    herr1911 Member

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    I've decided to leave my savage alone, and buy a new rifle to play with. looking at a rem 700 sps in .300 RUM with the intentions of turning it into an edge over the next year or so. Is a person better off with a stainless donor gun, or CM? If you have a preference, please explain.

    Is that the right gun to start with in the first place?

    Thanks-
     
  2. coyotezapper

    coyotezapper Well-Known Member

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    If you hunt in a wet climate then go with the SS. That being said though there are many good firearms finishes that would make a CM receiver weatherproof including cerakote, KG, Duracoat etc. etc. A 700 300 RUM is a perfect donor if the price is right. If you are buying the rifle for the action only for a few dollars more you could buy a Stiller or equivalent action. You can also sell barrel, stock on Gunbroker with a SPS and get a little money back.
     
  3. herr1911

    herr1911 Member

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    I guess I should have worded that a little differently. Are there any strength differences between Stainless and CM that would make one better than the other?
     
  4. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    strength wise chrome moly steel is much stronger than stainless steel untill you reach the 17 and 19 series. Stainless steel will take a little more heat than C/M, but not as much as most folks think. The ones that are designed to take serious heat at in the middle of the 300 series, and that's not a good barrel steel. The one real advantage that the stainless barrels have over the C/M is their resistence to currosion, but even that's not as much as most people think when your talking 416 stainless steel. Always remember in the world of steel (I don't care whatkind) that if it will harden it will rust. There is a form of stainless steel that is hardened to 28-32rc that will not rust. Is machinable, but tough. And is nearly as strong as C/M.
    gary
     
  5. highridge1

    highridge1 Well-Known Member

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    He's refering to action strength. Either will treat you fine.
     
  6. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    for 98% of the people Stainless is just fine. But if you happen to hunt in extreme cold; it's another ball game. The only real advantage stainless steel has over chrome moly steels is the ability to withstand a higher heat range. And that's not by as wide of a margin as most people think
    gary
     
  7. Loner

    Loner Well-Known Member

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    You will save some money over the years with a stainless gun as well as time. I just
    did an old mauser that had to be heat treated. After the heat treated it had to be blued.
    Not expensive but not free and it all requires time. When I burn the barrel out I am
    going stainless and will moly resin it black. Won't look great as far as a match but better
    than two tone.
    I love wood and bluing on a gun. I also love carbon fiber stocks and stainless on a gun.
    Ones for shootin and ones for fun.
     
  8. davewilson

    davewilson Well-Known Member

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    i'm going to respectfully disagree with this nstatement. there is a difference in strength. the heart of a gun is an action and the strength of that action has a direct bearing on how well it will shoot. if a bigger cartridge is going to be used and especially with a long 30" type barrel, a CM action has an advantage. this is why some gunsmith's will only build certain cartridges on a CM action and not on a SS.
     
  9. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    there's much more the the differences than even that. The SS steel used in the firearms industry is known as a "ferritic" steel. The other is classed as an "austenetic" steel, but there are also a few odd balls that fit neither. A barrel and an action are usually made from a 400 series, and most often 416. It's really a free machine stainless steel that is also known as a high martensetic steel (remember that word). Martensite is not a good thing in the world of granular structure and strength. The three words just don't mix. Many big bore rifles are actually made of chrome moly steel, and then electroless nickled (Weatherby used to do this on all their larger caliber rifles, and may still do). You get all the strength of 4350 as well as the durability of the nickel (a hard surface that will not rust). So what's wrong with a little retained martensite after heat treat? Cracks lead the list! Most are extremely small hairline cracks that are only visible under a microscope, and in the millionths when thinking of size. Guess what? They can grow because the granular structure of 416 is bad at best (just like 440 and 430). In hot weather this is not a serious problem, but leave the rifle out on the porch in -20 weather for a couple days and you get a different story. So why don't Remington or whoever else wants to build the actions out of something like 17PH4 rearc melt stainless steel? Money and most have no idea how to machine it (too cheap to hire somebody to show them how). The stuff is tuff, and when you get into 19 series it gets even harder to work with, and that cheapo Jap lathe or the Chinese clone won't last two weeks on the job. Still you can easilly do it with a wire and a sinker EDM with ease. They also could cut actions and barrels from MAR-10 sold by Baldwin Steel in PA. This is 110% better steel, but roughly six times the price. Will never rust. Shipped in a pretreat form that Rockwells at 30RC. Will take heat as well as 330 and 349 stainless steel (that's close to 50% better than 416). But alas the stuff is tough, but can be machined very well with the correct inserts (diamond or ceramic are prefered). This steel also has a very low retained martensite in it's structure.

    So Ok we'll just deep freeze the steel to get rid of the martensite (that's why you deep freeze the stuff). Nope it won't work with stainless steels that are of a 400 series. That's just the nature of the beast. On the otherhand a piece of chrome moly will cryo treat fairly well if it has a lack luster heat treat

    What we need is an action made of 52100 Timken steel that is induction hardened in the front third. Then use a 4130 bolt with a heat treat number of about 35RC. Or maybe an action made of Carpenter Air Shock with an RC of about 45 RC. After heat treat simply electroless nickel the reciever and bolt body
    gary