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View Full Version : Breaking in Technique for Upper


benny13603
01-08-2007, 9:19 PM
Hi Friends,
Is there any good Technique for Breaking In the new upper. Your advices are greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Prc329
01-08-2007, 9:45 PM
I have been trying to get the same info. I keep hearing two different things.

1. A very specific break in involving cleaning after every shot for the first few shots
2. Shoot it and have fun.

Who is correct?

JOEKILLA
01-08-2007, 9:50 PM
Shoot the hell out of it :D

Aluisious
01-08-2007, 9:55 PM
Hi Friends,
Is there any good Technique for Breaking In the new upper. Your advices are greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Here was my technique, applied last week to a new upper:

Spray it with Break Free CLP.

BoreSnake it three times.

Fire eighty shots.

More CLP and five passes with the BoreSnake at home.

Still shoots fine...IMHO the people cleaning between shots don't have much better to do with their time. Barrels are supposed to be shot dirty, unless you never plan on shooting more than a handful of rounds at once.

shinigami
01-08-2007, 9:55 PM
I just went and shot 150 rounds after UPS delivered it. :D

blastphemind
01-08-2007, 9:59 PM
To me, I say the only thing I found worth breaking in on my upper is the rear take down pin, I sure had a b*tch of a time try to pull it in and out when I first went to the range with it - it was so snug.

But as far as everything else could be done at the range, like mentioned above shoot the hell out of it :D

Aluisious
01-08-2007, 10:00 PM
To me, I say the only thing I found worth breaking in on my upper is the rear take down pin, I sure had a b*tch of a time try to pull it in and out when I first went to the range with it - it was so snug.

But as far as everything else could be done at the range, like mentioned above shoot the hell out of it :D
My takedown pin is also tough, I have to push a little on the opposite side to start it going.

bobfried
01-08-2007, 10:44 PM
To this day youll never get a satisfactory answer on breaking any machine parts.

There is still a firce debate in the car world as to the point of a break-in period, some major race teams do one thing and others do the opposite.

As far as rifles are concerned, there are some break in methods that people have said work. Unfortunately the same methods have also been shown as pure voodoo by others. Some smiths swear by one, other's swear by the exact opposite.

The only thing I have ever known to be somewhat repeatable is the 5 shot bore patch method for precision bolt actions. Well an AR isn't that, most AR's have chrome lined barrels to boot, and chromed barrels aren't exactly condusive to breaking in or accuracy. So basically, when it comes to an AR, take it to the range and shoot the piss out of it the first time and your ok. Anything else have usually been shown to be a waste of time or even detrimental to a semi-auto chrome lined rifle.

fairfaxjim
01-08-2007, 10:47 PM
The only thing that I watch for with a new barrel is fouling. There are machine marks and some inherent roughness in a new barrel, so it may, and I say MAY, foul quicker when new. Fouling is not desirable, so a new barrel should be checked every few rounds at first, and less frequently as the marks get smoothed out by the bullets. Once the barrel is fouled, the bullets are not contacting the full length and diameter of the bore, and thus the fouled spots are theoretically not getting broken in. The cleaning after each round is simply to remove any possible fouling between rounds, to let each subsequent bullet "hone" the barrel to its max. Some even go to the "fire lap" process that uses increasingly finer lapping compounds on bullets, sometimes with much lighter powder loads to slow them down in the barrel. This is supposed to get you a mirror finish with no machining marks and increased accuracy with less tendency to foul.

I tend to check the new barrels often, clean at the first sign of any fouling, and shoot them LOTS!

BTW - my DPMS upper recommended the clean between rounds for some ridiculous amount. It was a stainless barrel. As stated above, the chromed lined barrels are a bit different.

Aluisious
01-08-2007, 10:51 PM
I'd like to see a scientific study on whether such break in proceedures for rifles result in anything.

The unarguable truth is unless your rifle is intended to be a miracle of accuracy and you are an extremely accomplished marksman, there's no way you're going to notice the difference, if any exists.

I don't see Marine Corps snipers going bang patch patch patch bang bang patch patch patch patch patch...ugh.

blastphemind
01-08-2007, 11:00 PM
My takedown pin is also tough, I have to push a little on the opposite side to start it going.

Yeah tell me about it, I ended up installing a plastic rear takedown pin that had a hole in the end in which i installed one of those key rings. Since it's a bit more flexible i think it squeezed in alot smoother into my upper compared to the metal ones I had.

ocabj
01-08-2007, 11:08 PM
Augh! Just say no to 'CLP' in bores.

Seriously, use the method outlined by your upper/barrel manufacturer. White Oak will give you a break in procedure to follow even though they say it's not necessary. Pretty much clean the bore completely. One shot. Clean. One shot. Clean. Two shots clean. Two shots clean. At least that's what I used for my WOA service rifle upper. And when I say 'clean', I mean use a good bore solvent like Butch's Bore Shine or Montana Xtreme that cuts carbon and copper fouling.

Northern Competition has a different recommendation for their match grade chrome-moly barrels that they highly stress in order to increase the hardness of the bore.

I have mixed feelings about breaking in a barrel. Funny thing is, I won't do it on a factory mass produced barrel, even though it will have more tool marks than any barrel out there. I don't care about trying to break-in a factory barrel to 'smooth' out the machining marks. I figure the barrel will settle in at around the 500 round mark. But I'll do a break-in on a match grade custom barrel even though it will have the least amount of tooling/machining marks because I want to smooth out what little tooling/machining marks that do exist. Plus, I want maximum accuracy from the barrel as soon as possible out of a custom barrel, and it should be achievable with as little as 10 rounds of break-in. There's no way you will break-in the average mass produced factory barrel using a 10 or even a 20 shot, one round and clean, one round and clean, repeat procedure. You may think you are, but those tooling marks aren't going to go away. You're better off handlapping the barrel with JB Bore Paste. But if you ever buy a gun with a factory barrel that you end up trying to hand lap for accuracy, you may as well have bought a custom barrel.

I've got a Savage 10FP with over 2000 rounds through the factory .308 bore. It still copper fouls like a mofo. But it still shoots at or below 1MOA. I did the one shot and clean for 10 rounds. Didn't make a difference as far as copper fouling. I even handlapped the bore with JB Bore Paste. Still didn't make a difference.

Summary? Just use the break-in method recommended by the manufacturer/gunsmith of the barrel. Otherwise, just shoot it.

ocabj
01-08-2007, 11:15 PM
I don't see Marine Corps snipers going bang patch patch patch bang bang patch patch patch patch patch...ugh.

True, but they have Schneider barrels.

Plus, the USMC armorers prep the gun for the snipers. Those rifles are ready to go when they leave the armory.

kap
01-09-2007, 12:35 AM
I prefer to "season" my rifles with the sweet smokiness that only many rounds worth of burnt gunpowder can provide and allow the fumes to permeate into all the rifles crevices.

m1371
01-09-2007, 5:16 AM
I don't see Marine Corps snipers going bang patch patch patch bang bang patch patch patch patch patch...ugh.

And you've spent HOW much time around Marine Corps snipers????? :rolleyes:

Do tell.....

Comstock Lode
01-09-2007, 7:29 AM
Pretty straight forward answer: Chrome barrel, shoot the piss out of it. Stainless National Match barrel, break it in. Sure, most likely the Stainless barrel will shoot just fine if you simply shoot the piss out of it, but the consensus opinion for a competition rifle is to go through the break in, carefully, with a bore guide, minimal brass brushing (I generally use a nylon brush and even a nylon jag), one direction, etc etc. Takes some extra time that first trip to the range... whatever. If you are not planning competive shooting, then who cares, shoot the piss outta it!

Bore Tech "Eliminator" is the miracle bore cleaner, finished off with a dry patch then a patch with some Break Free.. don't want to shoot a totally dry barrel.

Again, over cleaning, or careless cleaning probably does more damage than good, but if there is a chance that a careful break in to slick out the NM stainless barrel results in a more accurate competitive rifle, then why not?

Aluisious
01-09-2007, 7:36 AM
Augh! Just say no to 'CLP' in bores.

Seriously, use the method outlined by your upper/barrel manufacturer. White Oak will give you a break in procedure to follow even though they say it's not necessary. Pretty much clean the bore completely. One shot. Clean. One shot. Clean. Two shots clean. Two shots clean. At least that's what I used for my WOA service rifle upper. And when I say 'clean', I mean use a good bore solvent like Butch's Bore Shine or Montana Xtreme that cuts carbon and copper fouling.

Northern Competition has a different recommendation for their match grade chrome-moly barrels that they highly stress in order to increase the hardness of the bore.

I have mixed feelings about breaking in a barrel. Funny thing is, I won't do it on a factory mass produced barrel, even though it will have more tool marks than any barrel out there. I don't care about trying to break-in a factory barrel to 'smooth' out the machining marks. I figure the barrel will settle in at around the 500 round mark. But I'll do a break-in on a match grade custom barrel even though it will have the least amount of tooling/machining marks because I want to smooth out what little tooling/machining marks that do exist. Plus, I want maximum accuracy from the barrel as soon as possible out of a custom barrel, and it should be achievable with as little as 10 rounds of break-in. There's no way you will break-in the average mass produced factory barrel using a 10 or even a 20 shot, one round and clean, one round and clean, repeat procedure. You may think you are, but those tooling marks aren't going to go away. You're better off handlapping the barrel with JB Bore Paste. But if you ever buy a gun with a factory barrel that you end up trying to hand lap for accuracy, you may as well have bought a custom barrel.

I've got a Savage 10FP with over 2000 rounds through the factory .308 bore. It still copper fouls like a mofo. But it still shoots at or below 1MOA. I did the one shot and clean for 10 rounds. Didn't make a difference as far as copper fouling. I even handlapped the bore with JB Bore Paste. Still didn't make a difference.

Summary? Just use the break-in method recommended by the manufacturer/gunsmith of the barrel. Otherwise, just shoot it.
What's wrong with CLP in bores? It cuts out the carbon funk and leaves it looking shiny, and it won't rust in there.

Aluisious
01-09-2007, 7:36 AM
And you've spent HOW much time around Marine Corps snipers????? :rolleyes:

Do tell.....
About as much time as you have.

ocabj
01-09-2007, 8:01 AM
What's wrong with CLP in bores? It cuts out the carbon funk and leaves it looking shiny, and it won't rust in there.

I come from the religion that believes PTFE/teflon in the bore is bad for accuracy. This belief has it's roots in the benchrest community and has been accepted by many precision rifle shooters. I don't know of any one with a precision rifle, tactical, benchrest, match, etc., that uses CLP in their bores.

I stick to regular solvent for my barrels followed by a good, non-teflon gun oil (ie: Butch's Gun Oil or Montana Xtreme gun oil).

Plus, if you're just using CLP, you're not getting any of that copper out.

I do own cans of CLP. I have no problems spraying down my handguns with them. I even clean my 'tactical' ARs with them. But for a competition gun or anything where precision and accuracy is paramount, not a drop of CLP will touch the bore, or even the gun itself.

I have no scientific proof that backs up the whole "teflon in bores" is bad belief. Just as I have no scientific proof that God exists. But I still believe in both.

xrMike
01-09-2007, 9:05 AM
Some barrel break-in links I've bookmarked over time:

http://www.benchrest.com/FAQ/6.1.shtml
http://www.montanarifleman.com/New%20Barrel%20Break%20In.pdf
http://www.remingtonmilitary.com/downloads/m24_maintenance.pdf
(the most rigorous routine of all is recommended for this military "sniper" rifle :eek: )
http://www.kriegerbarrels.com/RapidCat/catalog/pagetemplate.cfm?template=/RapidCat/common/viewPage.cfm&PageId=2558&CompanyId=1246
http://www.riflebarrels.com/support/centerfire_maintenance.htm
http://www.pac-nor.com/care/
http://www.shilen.com/faq.html#question10

As you can see, the details may vary a little but the overall gist is the same. The high-end makers all recommend some kind of break-in procedure. Personally, I'd take the time to break in a rifle that was intended for competition, benchrest, or varmint shooting. Probably not for a carbine, or something that was only going to see plinking duty.

m1371
01-09-2007, 6:44 PM
About as much time as you have.

Well, since you seem to have opened the door for this by trying for a smart@$$ comeback.....

In a previous thread about barrel break-in you made this comment:

I bet you military snipers don't bother with that crap, they just shoot and build their skills in the field.

Which REALLY sounds like you don't know squat about military snipers, much less Marine snipers.

Now you're trying to up your credibility by making direct claims as to what Marine snipers do or do not do:

I don't see Marine Corps snipers going bang patch patch patch bang bang patch patch patch patch patch...ugh.

So how about you come clean with your knowledge about military precision shooting? No snarky little arguments or anything, just the straight facts. You've made a claim in another thread about being a "combat MOS veteran". So why don't you share your background so we can see just who is saying what?

I spent 13yrs in the Corps, all of it in Division. So yeah, I can lay claim to having spent quite a bit of time around Marine snipers.

Let's see what you've got. Either put up or shut up.

swift
01-09-2007, 8:59 PM
I have been trying to get the same info. I keep hearing two different things.

1. A very specific break in involving cleaning after every shot for the first few shots
2. Shoot it and have fun.

Who is correct?


For a target upper, I clean after every shot for the first 25 and then every 5 or ten for the next 50. Now I clean after every 12 - 20 shots, but I'm just punching paper.

For a plinker upper, I cleaned it once after each of the first 10 shots, then shot the heck out of it.

Aluisious
01-09-2007, 9:08 PM
Well, since you seem to have opened the door for this by trying for a smart@$$ comeback.....

In a previous thread about barrel break-in you made this comment:



Which REALLY sounds like you don't know squat about military snipers, much less Marine snipers.

Now you're trying to up your credibility by making direct claims as to what Marine snipers do or do not do:



So how about you come clean with your knowledge about military precision shooting? No snarky little arguments or anything, just the straight facts. You've made a claim in another thread about being a "combat MOS veteran". So why don't you share your background so we can see just who is saying what?

I spent 13yrs in the Corps, all of it in Division. So yeah, I can lay claim to having spent quite a bit of time around Marine snipers.

Let's see what you've got. Either put up or shut up.
You got me beat, I was hoping for a good game of who could make a bigger *** of themselves by casting out assumptions.

I like to keep my details to myself, but suffice it to say you spent much more time in the military than I did. And I was Army, not Marines.

6mmAI
01-09-2007, 9:15 PM
Step 1)Load first round
Step 2)Shoot remaining ammo

Read any military manual -there is no break in period.

Centurion_D
01-09-2007, 9:32 PM
Step 1)Load first round
Step 2)Shoot remaining ammo

Read any military manual -there is no break in period.

agreed..no break in period required. Just shoot the heck outta the thing and have fun :D

xenophobe
01-09-2007, 9:40 PM
True, but they have Schneider barrels.

Plus, the USMC armorers prep the gun for the snipers. Those rifles are ready to go when they leave the armory.

There is absolutely a specified break-in routine for a M40 or M24. Both of their field manuals describe it. Yes, a break-in is required on new barrels.

On an AR? Just shoot it unless you got some super fancy SS match barrel. Then it may actually be worth properly breaking in.

And a proper break-in for a match grade rifle will make cleaning easier and will copper foul much less...