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Thread: Dedicated barrel for cast? .308

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Dedicated barrel for cast? .308

    I recently bought a .308 rifle primarily because I want to cast rifle bullets and give my hand at shooting 400+ yards with cast.

    Then I stumbled across a "quick change" barrel system for my Tikka that looks pretty slick.

    Finally, I spoke to a gent at one of the barrel manufacturers about shooting cast and he recommended a barrel with particular rifling for cast. 4R something...... I have it in my notes.

    When all of that came together I started thinking about keeping two (or more?) barrels for that rifle, one for cast and one for J words and switching back and forth as needed.

    Is a dedicated barrel for cast worth the trouble and expense? Has anyone tried one of the "quick change" systems? Do they perform as advertised?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Just my thinking, but- Where is the scope mounted? How many rounds to get you back where you were with THAT barrel? Is there a specific reason I cannot go get or build a cool Boolit rifle? Just thinking why I don't want another rifle.

  3. #3
    Boolit Grand Master popper's Avatar
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    If the tikka has a good barrel, stick with it. 4 r (rachet) works but no better.
    Whatever!

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    I shoot cast and jacketed in my .308. If I am shooting both the same day I shoot jacketed first, then a few cast 'fouling shots'. Then shoot cast for score. I usually shoot powder coated bullets with gas checks but I have shot lubed bullets with gas checks as well.

    Jacketed bullets (usually 155gn match bullets) will go into 1/2MOA if I do my part. My cast bullets hover around 1MOA and sometimes a little less.

    FWIW, I have less copper fouling in the barrel after I shoot the gas checked bullets.

  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master popper's Avatar
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    I shoot jacketed and cast from same barrel, sometimes same day - no difference. I don't even clean the barrel often.
    Whatever!

  6. #6
    Boolit Master


    GregLaROCHE's Avatar
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    A lot of people used to advocate getting all the copper out of a barrel and keeping it out. I personally used to interchange, but now I rarely have anything that is jacked to shoot.

  7. #7
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by popper View Post
    I shoot jacketed and cast from same barrel, sometimes same day - no difference. I don't even clean the barrel often.
    Same here. If I'm cleaning a barrel, it means that I messed up somehow.
    And that Tikka barrel is probably going to work fine.
    Sent from my SM-A716U using Tapatalk

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    I say just do it.

    But will also say,given some time you're gonna get tired of the(changing) process. But don't take that as any reason not to try. Good luck with your project.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    Only thing I would add.

    If I were to do a switch barrel, I would use a 6BR or similar for my jacketed barrel and get a .308 or .30-06 barrel for cast. Possibly a wildcat, eg a .308 with a longer neck. The cast barrel would also get a slower twist rate, maybe 1-14.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    The quick change setup claims to return to original POI of the barrel you are installing. They also claim and easy and quick change.

    But...... If having a dedicated cast barrel isn't advantageous then the quick change doesn't make much sense.

    Thank you all for the input.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by charlie b View Post
    Only thing I would add.

    If I were to do a switch barrel, I would use a 6BR or similar for my jacketed barrel and get a .308 or .30-06 barrel for cast. Possibly a wildcat, eg a .308 with a longer neck. The cast barrel would also get a slower twist rate, maybe 1-14.
    I was considering just that.

    For another thread.... I shoot .224 and .243 with Grendel based cartridges. I wonder what kind of performance I could pull out of a "308 Grendel" ?

    Too much fun!

  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master
    Mk42gunner's Avatar
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    308 Grendel. Wouldn't that be awful close to a 7.62x39 Improved?

    My take on switch barreled rifles or extra cylinders for a revolver is that while they sound good in theory, they aren't all that practical. And yes, I do have some of both. They usually stay in whatever caliber or gauge I bought the gun in and only see very occasional use in the other.

    Robert

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    I have had the same experience. Mine was a .45Colt/ACP Ruger Blackhawk. I think I fired 12 rounds with the acp cylinder. Then changed back to the long Colt and never went back. I kinda felt that if I wanted to shoot .45ACP I would use one of my 1911's. The Ruger was set up with heavy long Colt loads.

    The Grendel capacity is right, just not long enough case neck. That's one of the issues I have with the .308 and cast. Many of the cast bullets I have used are seated deeper into the case.

  14. #14
    Boolit Grand Master


    Larry Gibson's Avatar
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    I've seen several switch barrel rifles with receiver mounted scopes that don't hold absolute zero when changing barrels (different cartridges) they are close enough to stay "on paper". One in particular stays on paper at 800 meters!

    I regularly interchange the 45 ACP cylinder with the 45 Colt cylinder in my "Evil Roy" Uberti SAA. The ACP with my standard practice load [5 gr BE under a 200 - 230 gr cast at 850 +/- fps] hits POA at 25 yards. My standard 45 Colt load [230 gr cast over 700X or BE at 950 fps] hits 1 1/2 - 2" high at 25 yards and POA at 50 yards. It is a very useful combination to me.
    Larry Gibson

    “Deficient observation is merely a form of ignorance and responsible for the many morbid notions and foolish ideas prevailing.”
    ― Nikola Tesla

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    isn't this what the TC contender was invented for, switching barrels? ive never owned one but I've seen ones where scope is on barrel so it stays right on the bulls eye when you switch barrels.

  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master

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    The swap barrel rifle has worked for years it is a interesting platform. While each barrel may not shoot to the same scope setting a scope with target turrets allows each barrels zero to be dialed into the scope when the barrel is installed. Here good notes need to be kept so the settings are remembered. The savage barrel nut system has been adapted to remingtons and some others. here a head space gauge is used to change barrels. The old way was a shoulder chambered barrel with witness marks that are aligned.

    If you want a dedicated barrel or 3 for your rifle thats more than enough reason in itself. Same case heads makes things easier also.

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    easier and possibly less costly just to buy another gun, unless you live in a restrictive country that limits how many firearms you can own.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check