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#2938510 - 04/05/09 Barrel life expectancy per cartridge
Spotshooter Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 05/10/03
Posts: 11676
There should be some type of spreadsheet out there but all I've found so far

22 LR's - 5-10k

223 size = 3-4k rounds

243-308 Mediums = 2-3000 rounds

30-06 size = guessing - 1700-2500 ?

300 Mags - 1000
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#2938656 - 04/05/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
Malm Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 10/03/08
Posts: 1628
Loc: SLC, Ut
Too many variable involved to make predictions. First you have to define "barrel life" and then you have to consider the number one enemy to the barrel, heat and pressure.

Everyone has a different take on what they consider acceptable accuracy which will increase or decrease the numbers. For instance, 22 LR's can go much further than 5-10K, while 223 types can burn out in less than 1K. A lot of it depends on how well you treat the barrel.
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#2938824 - 04/05/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Malm]
gwindrider1 Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 10/19/04
Posts: 974
Loc: Colorado Mtns.
Sharpshooter,

I believe the numbers you posted are seriously under real life expectations!

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#2938883 - 04/05/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: gwindrider1]
Spotshooter Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 05/10/03
Posts: 11676

Don't know, that's why I posted them... Saw them on a barrel maker website.
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#2940845 - 04/06/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
TryMe Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 02/25/09
Posts: 1189
I think correlations can be drawn in extrapolating pounds of powder burned down a bore.

I should keep better round count records.

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#2940965 - 04/06/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: TryMe]
Bob338 Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 06/14/11
Posts: 2437
Loc: Redding, CA
You can contact Sierra. They ran some tests a few years ago to gage between SS and chromoly barrels. Best I recall they considered both barrels "gone" in the area of 4-5000 rounds.

It may be they were considering erosion to the throat rather than wear in the bore, don't recall. I've seen barrels where they were re-chambered after cutting off about 1" of shank that returned to "life" after erosion was eliminated.
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#2941058 - 04/06/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: TryMe]
Jordan Smith Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 03/30/06
Posts: 7864
Loc: Calgary, AB, Canada
 Originally Posted By: TryMe
I think correlations can be drawn in extrapolating pounds of powder burned down a bore.


And the amount of time over which that powder is burned (quick, successive shots until the barrel is too hot to touch will decrease barrel life significantly)...
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#2941768 - 04/06/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Jordan Smith]
MichiganScott Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 03/17/06
Posts: 2451
Loc: God's Country
The military figured 5000 max for .30-06 prior to the rifle going overseas, 10,000 for training in the US. Of course, this is based on combat accuracy.

A chrome plated AR barrel will last several times the figure given. I don't think you can wear out a .22 rimfire.
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#2941809 - 04/06/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
whelennut Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 09/15/06
Posts: 4720
Loc: Minnesota
Spotshooter,
Hang around with highpower rifle shooters and you will hear that the .223 shooters expect about 10,000 rds from a barrel.

The .308 Winchester crowd expects 6,000 rds.

I have heard that the .243 Winchester and 7mm Magnums might be around 1500-2000 rds.

I purchased a used barrel from a state champion which had 6,000 rds through it. It got rechambered to a 300 Winchester Magnum
and now is an elk hunting rifle. The owner is very satisfied with it!

The target shooter did not want to go to the National Match at Camp Perry and chance that the barrel would go bad at a national championship. It still shot fine when he took it off at 6,000 rds.
This was a high quality match barrel to begin with (Kreiger)which probably is a big factor?
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#2942842 - 04/07/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: ]
TryMe Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 02/25/09
Posts: 1189
I could not fathom a reason to slum CM on an aftermarket tube.

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#2958162 - 04/13/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: TryMe]
chris112 Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 02/01/05
Posts: 1724
Loc: South Dakota
It has been a long time since I read it BUT the first figures that I heard went 8,000 to 10,000 as the expected life of a barrel. It does vary with the cartridge used however. My .222 Remington was used by a previous owner to the point that the barrel had to be shortened and rechambered. Don't know how many rounds he put down it but I have put at least 2,000 rounds through it.

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#2958254 - 04/13/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: chris112]
TryMe Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 02/25/09
Posts: 1189
Barrels live far longer than them that don't shoot,would try to make you believe.

I find than an interesting extrapolation.

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#2968262 - 04/16/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: TryMe]
BISYN Offline
Member

Registered: 07/03/05
Posts: 193
Loc: Nowhere, NM
I remember being told that on a hot day it was possible to burn out the barrel on a .30 caliber machine gun in less than one can of ammo by simply firing one continuous burst, but I never had the guts to try it.
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#2974983 - 04/19/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
Tonk Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 03/29/09
Posts: 3090
Loc: Chicago, Ill.
Sharpshooter I'll tell you what I think, here goes: This is on the average hunting rifle with various bullet weights being shot during that time. If someone goes out and just shoots the holy grail out of a rifle and never lets it cool or doesn't clean it properly etc. This is all going to affect barrel life down the road ok.

1. 22lr = 9000

2. 223 = 4000 to 6500

3. 243 = 4000 to 6500

4. 30-06 = 4000 to 6500, .308 = 4000 to 6500

5. 300-mag = 3500 to 5000


Edited by Tonk (04/19/09)
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#2975082 - 04/19/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Tonk]
whelennut Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 09/15/06
Posts: 4720
Loc: Minnesota
Years ago I found a prairie dog town that offered my friend and I a chance to shoot for 12 hrs straight. I was alternating between two different rifles.
My friend had a new .222 Remington and hundreds of rounds of ammo
which he proceeded to shoot up over the weekend.
He claimed the barrel was never the same after that.
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I like to do my hunting BEFORE I pull the trigger!
There is only one kind of dead, but there are many different kinds of wounded.

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#2975132 - 04/19/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: whelennut]
bea175 Online   content
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 02/15/02
Posts: 27823
Loc: Kpt.,TN , Montgomery, Co, VA
It isn't how many rounds but how fast between shots that will get the barrel sooner than later
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#2976993 - 04/20/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: bea175]
Jason280 Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 12/24/06
Posts: 1206
Depending on the upkeep, I would guess a .22LR would go in the neighborhood north of 10-15k rounds and still give "minute of squirrel" accuracy.

Of course, on centerfire rifles, there are a lot of variables to keep in mind, with the most important being heat. This is even more true for high velocity centerfire cartridges, specifically those with muzzle velocities over 2800-3000fps. Let the barrels heat up too much on these rifles, especially a small caliber such as a .22-250 and .243, and you can ruin a throat in less than 1k rounds (if not 5-750 rounds). Keep the barrel cool, and you can expect a barrel to give sufficient accuracy out to 4k+ rounds.

Now, "acceptable accuracy" is subjective. A deer hunter, quite frankly, is likely to never shoot out a barrel. In fact, its more likely the barrel would rust out before it was shot too much. A bench shooter, on the other hand, may consider a barrel ruined after groups begin opening up .2-.3". Actually, I have talked to a few shooters who were rebarreling after groups "opened up" to .5" at 100 yards.

Reality is, very few of us will ever shoot enough to truly ruin a barrel. I have heard it told from several 'smiths that more barrels were ruined from improper cleaning than any other method, shooting included.

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#2980088 - 04/21/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Jason280]
rgrx1276 Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 04/23/06
Posts: 1676
Loc: Israel, Florida
I shot high power rifle for 9 years. In that time I managed to win state championships, regional matches,and some national matches.I went distinguished in 1996, and have a high master classification in over the course and long range.

In my experience with the 223 I saw about 3500-4000 accurate rounds in over the course competition. At close range,(inside 500 yards), the caliber seemed to last much longer. But I shot the 600 yard line a lot on sunday with the 3-600 matches. Douglas,Hart,Shilen ect all died around the same time. Talking to the USAMU guys, that's what they found out as well.

In my 300 win mag LR rifle, 2000 rounds was where I started to see fliers at the 600-1000 Yard Line.

When I went to the 6.5x284,my barrels died around 800 rounds. It's a great cartridge, but a real barrel burner in the LR game.

I read an article years back by Kevin Thomas in Precision Shooting Magazine when he was employed by Sierra, and I "believe" he said the 308 barrels started throwing fliers at the 200 yard line at 3200-3400 round count. This was after firing 10 round strings with the totals fired in one minute.

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#2986093 - 04/23/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: rgrx1276]
Dave_Skinner Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 05/27/03
Posts: 6101
Loc: The Treasure State
I can't imagine a 300 Win Mag lasting to 5000 rounds, not with that short neck and all that powder. I think I maybe got 1500 rounds out of my 25-06 before the throat washed away.
I think my first CRMO 223 barrel off my Savage lasted 3000 or so shots. Actually, the last group it shot was a .415 but the throat was out too far to use the magazine any more. It's in the stash to be set back and put on something, someday.
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#2992067 - 04/26/09 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Dave_Skinner]
jimmyp Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 11/28/03
Posts: 12168
Loc: Georgia
if I don't get some bullets pretty soon my barrels are going to last forever...
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#5688144 - 10/07/11 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
RAPTOR Offline
New Member

Registered: 10/07/11
Posts: 2
It seems to me that should the .308 figures be even near accurate that seems to translate to:

6000 rounds through the barrel........

@ 20 rounds per box we have 300 boxes of ammunition........

Each season IF and I say IF you fire 5 boxes (100 rounds) in practice and actual hunting per season........

The rifle, with care, will last 70 seasons !!

The grand children will fight over "Dad's" old rifle.

LOL

I am 67 and just entering my "mid-life" crisis. and I can't find a place near Houston to hunt hogs without maxing a credit card.

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#5688404 - 10/07/11 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
pal Online   content
Campfire Guide

Registered: 07/06/11
Posts: 4285
Loc: so cal
Have never shot a barrel out, but understand that the worst thing for barrel life is ultra high velocity. If you must have close to 4,000 ft/sec at the muzzle, your barrel won't last long...maybe as little as 1,000 rounds, or less, before accuracy suffers. So your small-bore wildcats and magnums are likely to require re-barreling far sooner than slower chamberings.
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#5688618 - 10/07/11 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
1minute Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 01/28/01
Posts: 16707
Loc: Burns/Hines, Oregon, USA
Geeezzz! Last year between late Feb and early June, I put 12,000+ rds through my 22LR in the squirrel fields. That is in single shot mode, and I hope it can endure that for many more seasons. Not sure the camming surface on my Ruger 77/22 bolt is going to survive though.
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#5697986 - 10/10/11 Re: Barrel life expectancy per cartridge [Re: Spotshooter]
BarryC Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 03/06/04
Posts: 8876
There are a lot of variables to this, so it is difficult to come up with numbers. But here are some variables:

Bullet weight - Heavier bullets wear barrel faster than light bullets.

Barrel material/fabrication method - It's generally agreed that cut rifled barrels last longer than button rifled, and hammer forged lasts longer than cut. Walther claims their stainless material lasts longer than 416, and chrome lined lasts longer than plain. HK & Noveske claim their polygonal rifling lasts longer than conventional rifling.

Velocity - High velocity wears faster than the same bullet moving slow.

Bullet style - It's been noticed that many barrels that won't shoot boat tails will still shoot flat base.

Cleaning method - Using poor cleaning methods can damage a barrel, especially the crown.

Fire lapping - It is claimed that fire lapping extends the life of a barrel.

Then last, but certainly not least, Your accuracy standards - A barrel that is too worn for benchrest use might be just fine for whacking P-dogs or for 3-gun competition.
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