PDA

View Full Version : Help me pick a barrel


1911Luvr
12-17-2011, 11:34 AM
I need a new 5.56 barrel for an AR build and looking for your suggestions. I plan on mainly plinking 55gr and 62gr surplus ammo at 100-200 yards. I am torn between 14.5", 16" and even 18" as an SPR build, but the likelyhood of me buying expensive 75-77gr ammo makes the SPR build seem a waste. I have looked at Adams melonite coated barrels, DD cold hammer forged barrels (have one on another build), and non-chrome lined barrels. I am leaning on the experts here for your opinion on what to get. Thanks!

chicoredneck
12-17-2011, 11:40 AM
Ar performance has some very nice barrels. They are melonite treated so they have good corrosion restistance and stand up to heat and pressure better than standrad barrels. Plus, they don't have the draw backs of traditional chrome lining. I do not have personal experience with their barrels, but I know people who do and they have had very good accuracy.

http://www.ar15performance.com/barrels_and_bolt_barrel_combos

r3dn3ck
12-17-2011, 11:46 AM
black hole weaponry. All 3 of my barrels from them turn in <.5MOA groups with good ammo. Blackened stainless seems to be their thing but they have stainless as well. E.R. Shaw is good too.

Now that I got the inexpensive side out of the way:

Dan Lilja. Nothing better. I have had several Lilja barrels and every single one has been a dream barrel. Pricing isn't cheap but quality is second to none.

chicoredneck
12-17-2011, 11:56 AM
If you want a stainless this guys barrels shoot incredibly well:
http://www.dtechsuperstore.com/

He has a bit of a lead time due to very high demand, but well worth the wait.

freonr22
12-17-2011, 12:07 PM
I have had a 20" 1/12, a 16" 1/9, a 14.5 1/7,

Depends on what you want to do. In the future I am going to do a 18" 1/8. I have been gathering the best of both worlds... Any thoughts?

r3dn3ck
12-17-2011, 12:49 PM
18" 1:9 twist would be my pick for a general purpose gun but remember, something that does acceptably at everything does awesomely at nothing.

1911Luvr
12-18-2011, 10:40 AM
How much accuracy difference is there at 200 yards between a 14.5" and16" barrel?

FatalKitty
12-18-2011, 11:02 AM
How much accuracy difference is there at 200 yards between a 14.5" and16" barrel?

nothing you would notice

dieselpower
12-18-2011, 11:09 AM
How much accuracy difference is there at 200 yards between a 14.5" and16" barrel?

Not much, nothing noticeable from off hand and barely noticeable from a bench rest. The dwell from the gas port to the release of pressure is a slight advantage for heat and carbon control as well as chamber pressure for cleaner extraction since the case isn't pressed against the chamber wall when the extractor starts to pull it out.

The biggest difference will be BATFE compliance and working on the barrel yourself. If you want to do things down the road like add FF rails or change the FSB, the 14.5" is a PITA since the MD is pinned and welded on.

I have a 14.5" and the bennys from the shorter dwell don't really make up for the hassle I have to go through to work on it. YMMV, I still like my 14.5, but sometimes I wish I had a 16".

I'd buy a 16" melonite QPQ, 1:9 4140CM in a freaking heartbeat if I needed a new barrel. There is a link to them in another thread.

EvolutionGSR
12-18-2011, 12:05 PM
I was looking for this info once too. The only thing i came up in my search was from arf or the high road, i dont remember which. Someone said (yes im sorry this is a "i read on another forum post, so, grain of salt) you will generally lose 30-50 fps per inch shorter. Can anyone confirm this?

dieselpower
12-18-2011, 12:10 PM
I was looking for this info once too. The only thing i came up in my search was from arf or the high road, i dont remember which. Someone said (yes im sorry this is a "i read on another forum post, so, grain of salt) you will generally lose 30-50 fps per inch shorter. Can anyone confirm this?

I think I have read that too. all things being equal like type of powder and heat index among other things.

Richard Erichsen
12-18-2011, 1:12 PM
I need a new 5.56 barrel for an AR build and looking for your suggestions. I plan on mainly plinking 55gr and 62gr surplus ammo at 100-200 yards. I am torn between 14.5", 16" and even 18" as an SPR build, but the likelyhood of me buying expensive 75-77gr ammo makes the SPR build seem a waste. I have looked at Adams melonite coated barrels, DD cold hammer forged barrels (have one on another build), and non-chrome lined barrels. I am leaning on the experts here for your opinion on what to get. Thanks!

By plinking I usually interpret that to mean personal amusement for the pleasure of shooting, an undemanding requirement. The most basic of barrels will do just fine for your intended use. For the sake of simplicity, a 16" standard profile plain or chrome lined barrel with a twist of 1:9" will do just fine, though the cost difference for 1:7" is insignificant. People get way overboard on components and spend more than they really need to for things that won't improve practical accuracy much, if at all.

"Plinking" to me also means firing off hand from standing, kneeling and prone positions, not just firing from under a shaded rifle range with a bipod or sandbags, which for me at least gets very boring, very fast. A lighter, more practical rifle will get used more and should be more fun and a whole lot cheaper. There are plenty of vendors trying to up-sell you into an expensive barrel and while you're at it more costly stocks, sights, optics and the likes which will turn what you originally defined as a "plinking rifle" into a dedicated range gun. If there is a challenge to be dealt with, it will be putting up sales resistance with so much encouragement to emphasize on .5" MOA that will do you little good in a rifle you might like to throw in the truck and shoot at make shift targets off-hand.

R

Hoop
12-18-2011, 3:05 PM
I have one of the rainier 16" match 225$ barrels. They guarantee sub moa with match ammo and I have gotten that although I usually expect about an inch. If you are looking for a plinker barrel you could do a lot worse.