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Thread: Rifle Building

  1. #1
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    Rifle Building

    Who builds their own rifles? Or at least thread and chambers barrels?

    Just tore apart two of my custom rifles. One just to repair a small mistake I made in the initial build. Didn't break the edge at the back end of the chamber enough and rounds always hang up on that sharp edge .... which is SUPER ANNOYING. So just need to put the barrel back in the lathe and chamfer that edge so it will feed reliably. Only complication is I'd like to not ruin the pain on the barrel so gonna make a threaded collar to screw over top of the bbl shank and run the steady rest on that, rather than on the barrel.

    The other rifle that came apart was a custom varmint rifle I wasn't totally happy with. I chose a slow twist rate to try to gain accuracy with lightweight varmint bullets but the slower spin rate reduced the explosive terminal performance of the bullets. I've got a bee in my bonnet about reaching 1400 yds with a 308 this summer and my current 20" barrelled 308 just doesn't produce the velocity that kind of range requires.

    Turns out I have a 26" 1:10 twist blank lying on the bench waiting for a home, so it is gonna go on the old varmint rifle receiver and get mated to a chassis stock I decided didn't go with another rifle. Its kinda nice that none of this is gonna cost me any money because all the pieces are lying on my bench already. Just requires swapping a few components around a bit.

    I haven't actually built any rifles in quite a while but it sure is nice to have the equipment and components to be able to build whatever I want. The next thing on the list will be a 30BR, for which I also have the barrel blank ready to go. Just need to step up to the lathe and cut some metal.

  2. The Following 4 Users Like This Post By Suputin

    FALover (02-14-2020), lone-wolf (02-15-2020), R&R Rancher (02-15-2020), Rory McCanuck (02-15-2020)

  3. #2
    Go Canucks Go! lone-wolf's Avatar
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    I read the title, and looked at the poster, and figured this would be more than putting a prefit on a savage action lol, no disappointment
    the wild still lingered in him and the wolf in him merely slept

    Aptet aut mori

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    "...need to put the barrel back in the lathe..." You not able to get at it with a round file?
    Lightweight varmint bullets usually want a fast twist. The rifling twist doesn't affect the performance of the bullet. Varmint bullets tend to have "explosive" results anyway.
    1400 yards with a 308 is heavy bullets and a longer barrel for sure. I'm thinking the 26" barrel and 190 grain match bullets might be the thing to use.

  6. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by lone-wolf View Post
    I read the title, and looked at the poster, and figured this would be more than putting a prefit on a savage action lol, no disappointment
    And I didn't even mention the rifle that needs the chamber fixed is a short barrelled 300 Blackout with .......... one of my special attachments.

  7. #5
    Super Moderator Rory McCanuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justice View Post
    "...need to put the barrel back in the lathe..." You not able to get at it with a round file?
    If a person has the right tool for the job, why wouldn't they use it?
    Don't blame me, I didn't vote for that clown. Oct 20, '15

  8. The Following 2 Users Like This Post By Rory McCanuck

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  9. #6
    Resident Combine Pilot JustBen's Avatar
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    Someday I hope to get to this stage...

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  11. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justice View Post
    "...need to put the barrel back in the lathe..." You not able to get at it with a round file?
    Tha chances of dinging the chamber with the tip of the file is way too high. The chances of making the edge of the chamber nicely and consistently rounded via a hand file is very low. Regardless the bbl would have to come out of the action anyway. At that point it is just as easy to make up a collar to protect the threads and then stick the whole thing back in the lathe and do the job properly.



    Lightweight varmint bullets usually want a fast twist. The rifling twist doesn't affect the performance of the bullet. Varmint bullets tend to have "explosive" results anyway.
    Dude, really?

    ALL benchrest barrels use slow twist to maximize accuracy with the light bullets they use. So YEAH, twist rate does affect the accuracy of the bullet.

    Frangible varmint bullets rely on the rotational speed (RPM) of the bullet to explosively deconstruct themselves. So YEAH, twist rate affects the terminal performance of that kind of bullet.

    The mistake I made was to use a slow twist rate when I really wanted explosive terminal performance. The case was 221 Fireball which does not produce the velocity of bigger 224 cases and thus does not result in as fast a rotational rate, which in turn reduces the explosive terminal performance.



    1400 yards with a 308 is heavy bullets and a longer barrel for sure. I'm thinking the 26" barrel and 190 grain match bullets might be the thing to use.
    I have a 26" blank which will make a 25" finished barrel. Bullets will be 208gr AMAX and 208gr ELD.

  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustBen View Post
    Someday I hope to get to this stage...
    All it takes is a few thousand bucks for a lathe, another couple of grand in tooling and a few years of experience and you too can cut your own barrels.



    One of the more interesting projects I did was my own wildcat cartridge. It is a short PDW round for AR carbines. Basically a lengthened 6mm Whisper. The most difficult part so far has been developing load data for a bespoke cartridge. What powder and how much do you use for which bullet weight?

  13. #9
    Senior Member Grimlock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suputin View Post
    All it takes is a few thousand bucks for a lathe, another couple of grand in tooling and a few years of experience and you too can cut your own barrels.
    Get me a job in a province that doesn't have a swamp every 300 yards and coyotes that eat all the large rodents, a license to make those fancy mufflers and I'll be right there with you.

  14. #10
    Resident Combine Pilot JustBen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suputin View Post
    All it takes is a few thousand bucks for a lathe, another couple of grand in tooling and a few years of experience and you too can cut your own barrels.
    I already have access to the lathe and tooling... but automotive and agricultural interests have higher priorities whenever I'm at the family shop.

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