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icallshotgun88 06-12-2014 11:10 PM

Barrel life...Remington 700 .308
I have a Remington 700 SPS tactical AAC-SD in .308 (20" barrel 1:10" twist)

Now I already know there are many factors that go into barrel life and I know I may never live to see the day where I blow out my barrel, but I'm curious!

I'm not shooting any "hot" loads.
Just standard .308 hunting stuff.

I clean my barrel every couple hundred rounds.

I use a plastic cleaning rod so I don't damage the barrel.

I just want a ball park estimate of how many rounds she can take before I start seeing a drop in accuracy..?

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Sniper03 06-12-2014 11:58 PM


As you stated you will probably never see the wear to the point of needing to rebarrel your rifle. At best is is a "SWAG" when it comes to putting an exact amount of rounds that constitutes replacing the barrel. To many factors to figure in. What would occur is the accuracy of the rifle slowly goes away a little bit at a time. The poor boy method of keeping track of it is to break the rifle in first. Then shoot two good 5 shot groups at 100 yards with it and keep the targets filed away. Keep enough of the ammunition you zero and shoot the groups with and the same LOT NUMBER for future testing. It will very quickly show you when the throat starts wearing considerably on the rifle. Of course there is Throat Erosion Gauges. I would clean it a little more often than you have been. That will aslo contibute to some wear with after every hundred or so rounds putting a bullet down through a dirty bore which makes sense. Anyway I personaly do not think you would be able to tell any difference if the rifle is cleaned reguraly until around 5000 to 8000 rounds. Remember Heat is the enemy of throat erosion on the rifle barrel besides proper maintenance. A bolt gun, I would say a guy should be able to get 10000-12000 rounds out of it before accuracy starts going to the dogs. But the Test Group shot in the begining will open up considerably! Obviously as stated accuracy will slowly diminish as the rifle gets more use. Also when throat erosin starts it will accelerate quicker than normal as the wear continues to expand the chamber. But the bolt gun has time to cool down normally after each 3 or four rounds at the most. Everyone will have thier own thoughts on this because as I said it is SWAG! with all the possible factors involved even the metallurgy of the same brand rifle compared to the other one. SWAG = (Scientific Wild A** Guess!)


jpattersonnh 06-13-2014 01:06 AM

What he said^^^^^^^

Start looking at 8000 rounds. You should get 10000 rounds before an issue, or series of issues arise. I am not familiar with the rifle. What is the barrel contour??
Crown type??

Mule659 06-13-2014 08:25 AM

Another thing, personally, I would clean my rifle a lot more than every couple hundred rounds. I punch the bore out on mine after every range trip. Especially if it is going to sit a while between sessions.

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John_Deer 06-13-2014 10:39 AM

Copper fouling will make you think a barrel is shot out. Use a barrel light to examine your barrel now. You will notice the tooling is sharp and square. If the barrel is fouled with copper the lands will look like they were cut on a 45 degree angle.

Copper fouling is something you need to watch. I have bought some nice rifles over the years the owner virtually gave to me due to copper fouling.

sandog 06-13-2014 11:33 AM

1 Attachment(s)
A friend came out to visit recently and brought his Savage in .243. He cleans it on occasion but wasn't aware of copper fouling. He hasn't been happy with the groups he's been getting. I put some Sweet's 7.62 solvent on a nylon brush, ran the brush through the bore and let it sit for 15-20 minutes, then ran a patch through with more Sweet's on it. I did this about 8 times before the patch came out clean and not all blue/green from copper fouling. We then went out and tested some loads with the Sierra 85 grain Varminter bullet and he got several 100 yard groups of 1/2", with one load grouping at 3/8". That restored my faith in his shooting ability and that even a cheap $300 Savage Axis can be very accurate with the right loads. My .17 HMR's groups would double in size if I didn't clean out the copper fouling after 50-60 rounds or so.
Quality of the barrel can affect how fast copper is deposited in the barrel. My Remington AR in .243 has almost no copper fouling come out after firing 80 rounds, while my Remington 700 in .308 has quite a bit. The .243 barrel would seem to be smoother than the M700 .308 barrel, but the heavy barrel .308 still turns in one hole groups, while the .243 will not. My 700 .308 came with the cheap plastic SPS stock, but I replaced that with a H-S Precision stock and Timney trigger. icallshotgun, get a bore guide if you don't already have one, to prevent throat wear from cleaning.

JonM 06-13-2014 03:28 PM

Your doing more harm with excessive cleaning than shooting.

I dont use anything but clp on a patch and jag to clean powder residue. Once accuracy starts to degrade i clean the copper. Over cleaning with brushes isnt good for the lands and long life of the barrel.

The throat is what wears out. Thats where the pressure and heat is the highest. Longer barrels wear out very slightly faster in the throat than shorter barrels because the high pressure and heat has longer time to act on the metal.

Most barrels shoot better dirty with some copper fouling. If your storing for a long time between shoots then its better to clean and oil the bore between sessions. If your shooting frequently its better to only remove residue and leave the copper until accuracy degrades.

tenchi 06-13-2014 03:36 PM

i've read somewhere in the neighborhood between 5000-10000. Depends on your load, bullet, cleaning habits, and dwell time between shots.

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