Wilson barrel accuracy

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by ba19500, Aug 19, 2015.

  1. ba19500

    ba19500 Well-Known Member

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    Our local gunsmith thinks $200 Wilson barrels are the best buy and can sometimes match Kreigers for accuracy. What has been your experience?
     
  2. shortgrass

    shortgrass Well-Known Member

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    $200 barrels are NOT hand lapped,,, they're not machine lapped, either.. Barrels that aren't lapped foul quickly. I'd wonder about anyone who calls themselves a "gunsmith" that thinks any barrel that's not been lapped can/will equal a barrel that has been hand lapped. Those $200 barrels are just slightly better than what most factory rifles wear. In this case, Ya' pay for what ya' get!
     
  3. Garycrow

    Garycrow Well-Known Member

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    Find another gunsmith.
     
  4. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    Wilson Arms and Cooper Were both bought by the same owner about 6-7 years ago. The barrel on my Cooper is a Wilson match grade barrel and is top quality, exceptionally accurate, and shoots /cleans as well as Kreigers I have owned. I understand they make different grade barrels. I have heard the low end barrels are factory grade, and can be hit or miss...... Like a factory barrel.
    This is a typical 5 shot, 100 yard example out of my 6.5x284 Cooper/Wilson barrel. My buddies 6.5x284 Cooper performs similarly.
     

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  5. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    lightbulbIf they shoot like that for $200, buy plenty of it.lightbulb
     
  6. shortgrass

    shortgrass Well-Known Member

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    22+ yrs. ago, while I was in gunsmithing school, Wilson sold us barrels for 50% of 'dealer' price. I used a lot of 'um. They shot well, as long as they've got a few 'fouling' shots through them and you don't expect 1/2" to 1" accuracy for more than 5-6 shots. Bore scoping shows why...... I expect more than 5-6 shots accurate shots from a custom shambered 'custom' barrel. Maybe they've changed. But common sense tells me that you can't buy two identical custom rifle barrels where one costs $140 less than the other. Actually, if Wilson is still located in Branford, CT. , the cost of 'labor' would be higher, there. The only way you can expect that kind of price difference is if they're imported from China or India...... I'd expect that Cooper has their 'pick' of the barrels they use and they're not the same as your 'gunsmith' is peddeling.
     
  7. just country

    just country Well-Known Member

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    morning, i have wilson barrel on my 300wm and my 6.5 rem. mag. they both

    drive tacks.. both the barrel r chrome molly #5.5 contour. all my gunsmith did was machine,

    chamber, and fit to receiver. I fitted both stocks very very good accuracy. both r 27,5in. long.

    u will not b disappointed. the 300 shoots 168,180, and 200 to the same point of aim.

    just country Life NRA-TSRAgun)
     
  8. adam32

    adam32 Well-Known Member

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    Coopers seem to do pretty good with Wilsons. As do a couple other companies.

    But last I checked you needed an order of 100+, so just buying 1 for a build is pretty tough to do...
     
  9. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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  10. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    I understand that Wison was( and still is) a bulk OEM supplier in the forearm industry. They build to spec which doesn't necessarily reflect on in their ability to produce an excellent barrel when specified. Also, I doubt +90 of the market coulnt tell the difference between a $200 and $600 barrel.
     
  11. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    I agree with everything you say, BUT from a gunsmiths point of view, any good Smith with an accuracy guarantee can/should be able to tell the difference, and should tell the rifles owner what the benefit of a premium barrel was. If you are using run of the mill barrels the risk of guaranteeing a I/2 moa or less is two much. and the chance of building a 1/4 MOA rifle consistently would be very slim and not worth the risk.

    I personally, would never re barrel a rifle intended for accuracy with a low end barrel because with the inconsistency of these barrel the outcome would be a simple guess and not worth the risk.

    Fortunately, gun smiths are judged by the performance of a rifle and one that choses to take these kinds of risk are living dangerously and will some day have to answer for his decision.

    Buying good components won't make a poor smith good, but it can make a good smith look great.

    The best comparison I know is like the term used in the computer world "Trash In - Trash Out"

    PS: I have nothing against Wilson or any other barrel maker that makes low end barrels, I just choose not to use them because of there inconsistencies.

    Fortunately, I can count the number of barrels I wont use on 1 hand so there are lots of good barrels to chose from.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  12. Greyfox

    Greyfox Well-Known Member

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    I do agree with you and was not justifying the OP's gunsmith one way or the other. I was more interested in describing Wilsons business and the quality of their match grade barrels. Even the OP's gunsmith eluded to the fact that the $ 200 barrels were hit or miss which I find strange, and would never consider him if that was his recommendation.
     
  13. ba19500

    ba19500 Well-Known Member

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    The fact that 100 barrels have to be ordered kills a sale anyhow. He must not be up on this.

    He did talk about breaking in a barrel the shoot/clean/shoot method.

    I remember when Wilson's turned out a bunch of bad barrels for Ruger a long time ago but they must have gotten better.
     
  14. Garycrow

    Garycrow Well-Known Member

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    I had an old tang safety Ruger M77 7mm rem mag that was built during the time period they were using Wilson barrels. I remember the rifle cost me $199 new and I know I spent at least three times that amount in reloading components trying to find a load that would shoot through it. It was good for about 3" groups at 100 yds, 2 1/2" groups if it was a real good day. I tried every manner of bullet, seating depth, powder, primer combination you could think of and that what she would do. Finally I had it rebarreled and all of a sudden it shot! I couldn't believe it, up until that time I was of the mind that I just had to find a load it liked. That started my foray into custom barrels.

    Depending upon what work you're having done and what type of rifle it's being done to, a rebarrel job is going to cost at least $250 in gunsmith charges. You can spend $200 on a Wilson and take your chances, or you could spend $325 (butch's reloading price) on a Bartlein. In the end you're looking at $450 vs. $575. With one you get a questionable unlapped barrel that may or may not shoot, the other you get a top of the line barrel that may or may not shoot BUT I know where my bet would be placed as to which one will perform. You pay your money and take your chances but going with a cheap azz barrel just to save 20% on a barreling job is penny wise and pound foolish in my opinion.

    I was dead serious when I said find another gunsmith. If one tried to talk me into a Wilson instead of a Kreiger I'd thank him for his time, gather my rifle and go find a gunsmith with more of an eye for quality. If he thinks that's "good enough" for my rifle then what kind of work is he going to do on it? If his standard is that low in components then I doubt his standard for his own work is any better. I have rifles built because I want better than I can get from the factory, not the same. I want a gunsmith that's a perfectionist, not one with a "that's good enough" attitude.