View Full Version : Barrel length question for you guys....

Phat Daddy
08-03-2010, 9:51 AM
I'm in the process of building a .308 semi auto rifle on a DPMS platform. My question to you guys is barrel length. I was set on a 20" fluted barrel (custom made for around $450-$500)for improved accuracy. After reading a lot and asking questions, it seems that for around $300 I could just get the SASS 18" barrel, which seems to be pretty nice and fairly accurate.

Would a 20" compared to an 18" make that much of a difference? Should I spend the extra coin and have one made?

Thanks in advance for your input. And please don't say, "get a bolt gun.":D

Wicked Pete
08-03-2010, 5:47 PM
I remember reading about this, I am not sure. I think you might want to move your question to the Centerfire Rifles Forum. Just suggesting.

Sounds like a good "build". I see the guys at the range with the GPMS format, nice! I am into the older bolt action stuff, I love .308!

Red Devil
08-04-2010, 9:40 AM
When you go to an 18" bbl., ...you:

- lose 50-100 fps MV.
- add muzzle blast.

The 20" bbl. seen to be a std. for tactical bolt-actions, ...and ballistically, even that is a little short for long range work. (600 + yds.)

Assault weapon...?

Form follows Function...

08-04-2010, 10:49 AM
The SASS is also lighter and thinner profile isn't it? None of which seems like a great idea on a bench gun. I'd stick to 20"+ if you want long range accuracy.

Granted, the .308 is an accurate cartridge and even a 16" barrel would net you some pretty good range. But it will work a lot better with a 20"+ barrel so all the powder can burn off and minimize muzzle flash.

08-04-2010, 2:51 PM
IMO 20 inch barrel will be more advantageous. But 20 inch barrels get heavy especially when they are bull barrels.

08-04-2010, 3:31 PM
In .308, I've shot with barrels from 16" to 26".

With each inch taken off, a little velocity is lost, but accuracy isn't. the difference between the 20" and the 18" will be as another poster mentioned, some MV, and some blast. If you shoot at night, you'll notice more muzzle flash due to ignition of powder.

As far as accuracy is concerned, don't worry about it. I had my bolt action rifle cut down from 26" to 18", and am maintaining the same accuracy. My dope hasn't changed too much, and I can still accurately hit well beyond 600yds. I've seen a 16" .308 hit beyond 1,000yds, so don't sweat it. You'll notice a drop in the weight, and easier handling with it.

08-04-2010, 3:55 PM
Go 18 inch. The thing is probably a boat anchor, do what ever you can to save a little weight.