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Old August 18, 2007, 01:49 PM   #1
BBush
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Browning A-Bolt....Boss system or not?

I am looking at buying a Browning A-Bolt stainless in the very near future. I think that I have narrowed it down to either a 30-06 or 7mm Rem. mag. My main question would be, should I get the Boss system or not? I am tending to lean toward not getting it because I don't know how much of an improvement it will make in the accuracy of the gun. I also don't know if I like the "lines" of the Boss system as well as the plain barreled rifle. Does anyone know how much of an improvement in accuracy most people get with the Boss system? If your rifle will shoot a 1 1/2 inch group at a 100 yards without the system, can I expect to tighten the group up to 1 inch if I play around with the Boss system or is that expecting too much?
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Old August 18, 2007, 03:24 PM   #2
MTMilitiaman
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I would expect the Abolt to do MOA or better without the BOSS, esp if you tinker with load selection. My only experience with the BOSS is an uncle's BAR .338 Win Mag. It shoots the el cheap Winchester Power Points into an inch with the BOSS tuned, and with very little recoil, but is loud. In fact, it defined "loud" for me until my brother got his .50 BMG.

I've been interested in the Abolts for a while. I almost bought a Stainless Stalker in 7mm Rem Mag but opted for the Rem BDL at the last moment, just because my family has been using Remingtons for a long time, and trusts them. Every Abolt I have ever handled has been slick. One advantage of the Browning, at least in the case of the 7 Mag, is barrel length. My Rem has a 24 inch barrel, the Abolt has a 26 inch. Sometimes I think the extra two inches would come in handy. The 7 Mag for an 8.5 to 9.5 pound scoped sporter isn't going to beat you up, so you don't really need the recoil reduction, IMO. I would get the Abolt in 7mm Rem Mag, without the BOSS and expect it to be more than accurate enough than anything I needed it for in the field.
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Old August 18, 2007, 04:59 PM   #3
Brad Clodfelter
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The BOSS works. Although I must say, they made the actual weight too light for it to fully work as good as it could have. A tuner needs to be at least 8oz or more in my honest opinion to make a barrel shoot its best with some exceptions of course. I would guess the Boss to weigh about 4oz, but that is a guess on my part. I don't believe it weighs 8oz. But getting back to your question, I have personal experience of shooting a Browning Bar MarkII Safari grade with the Boss which was my personal rifle at the time against a Bar same model without the BOSS. Both of these rifles were chambered for the 270Win. I consistantly shot group after group tighter with my gun than my buddy who shoots about as good as me. We were shooting 3 shot groups at 100yds. I believe every group was better with the Boss vs his gun. And I was shooting loads the gun didn't shoot as well as the Win Super-X loads which my buddy was shooting and his gun loved them. We ended up shooting about 2 boxes of ammo to test. My Bar would shoot 5 shot groups around .750 or maybe less with good ammo. The cheap ammo like the Win Super-X shot super out of my gun. I knew the gun was a shooter when I first shot it at 100yds after sighting it in at 50yds. My first 3 shots at 100yds with the cheap Win Super-X loads went into less than .600ctc group. The Win Fail safe loads shoot great too. I got 4 of these as a bonus in a box of the Win Super-X. I shot all 4 into a less than .700ctc group. Wished I would have had another to shoot 5 shots for that is what I now like to shoot mostly when group shooting. But I can tell you this much, the Bar I had would out shoot most standard barrel factory bolt action rifles group after group. The Sendero I had may beat it for 3 shot groups, but it would be tough to beat the Bar group after group. And I only had a 9 power scope on the bar. The sendero had a 24X scope on it. The thing I have found about the Bar and the BOSS is that a good factory bolt action may beat it on some groups, but it won't once the barrel starts getting hot. The Bar with the BOSS will just keep on stacking them group after group regardless if the barrel was hot.

But getting back to the tuner weight I have found that more weight will usually cause a gun to shoot better at least is my experience on rimfires. My Suhl 150 22lr has a Hoehn 8oz tuner on it. I just had Gene Davis put a new Benchmark barrel on it and had Gene thread the tuner to accept the additional screw on weights. The main body of the tuner is 8oz like I said earlier. The screw on weights come in 3, 5, and 8oz sizes. I have the 8oz weight screwed on to the 8oz main tuner with the 5oz weight screwed into the 8oz weight. So in other words, I have 21oz of total tuner weight at the end of the barrel. It's shooting holes with the $4 a box SK Pistol Match ammo right now. It still shoots great witht the 16oz total tuner weight.

But tuners will work on any barrel regardless of who tells you differently. If you don't have a tuner on the end of a barrel, it can still shoot good. And if the barrel is a custom precision made barrel, it can still shoot real well. But a tuner will make a barrel shoot even better. According to Bill Calfee, a bigger fat barrel is the way to go if not shooting with a tuner.

Here's a picture of the Suhl with the Hoehn tuner on it and I believe I have the 5oz weight installed in that picture.



Here's a group I shot with the 21oz total tuner weight last week shooting the gun. That was my smallest of the day. But I get a lot of groups just a little bigger than this. Anyway this is just showing you an example of what a tuner can do, but of course you must have an accurate, precision made barrel in order to get any gun to shoot its best. I had the tuner set at the number 22 setting. The group measured .125ctc.


Last edited by Brad Clodfelter; August 18, 2007 at 06:34 PM.
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Old August 18, 2007, 10:42 PM   #4
BBush
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The Boss system is starting to peek my interest into it...

I was just wondering if Browning sells more rifles with or without the Boss system? I know my local Bass Pro Shops seems to mostly have Browning A-Bolts without the Boss system.
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Old August 18, 2007, 11:23 PM   #5
Brad Clodfelter
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Well I believe that most are sold without because most shooters don't know anything about tuners. I can tell you for certain here and now after playing with them they do in fact work. But like I said the BOSS should have been made a little heavier to really work its best. But then you get into the fact that they might be a little muzzle heavy to attract most hunters to buy them to see the difference they in fact make vs a regular barrel Browning with no BOSS.

I can tell you through experience speaking here that I know what I am saying, or I wouldn't be saying it. That's the way I am. If I didn't know that tuners worked, I would have kept my mouth shut. I have played with tuners enough to know like on my Suhl because I shoot a lot of rimfire now-a-days that I can turn the tuner to make the groups get bigger or smaller. You may have several sweet spots on every tuner according to how heavy it is. But there will be one setting that seems to shoot probably the best. It is up to you to find it.

I'll show you another 5 shot group at 50yds with 16oz total tuner weight and on setting 360. This group is almost twice as small as the other one I showed you. But that is $9 a box Eley ammo too. The ammo makes a big difference. A tuner can't make bad ammo shoot good, but it can make good ammo shoot better. And when you get great ammo, well you get the drift.

Here's the group.


Last edited by Brad Clodfelter; August 19, 2007 at 02:09 AM.
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Old August 19, 2007, 02:24 AM   #6
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All a tuner does is allow the barrel to vibrate at the same spot each time a bullet from a specific load leaves the barrel. It let's the shooter control the barrel oscillations by adjusting the tuner in or out until you find the desired sweet spot. A regular barrel can't do this unless of course you got a big fat barrel, bigger than the bull barrels you will get from a factory type gun. When you control the barrel harmonics,(the vibration of the barrel) you can control accuracy. Centerfire shooters can reload to do this to a point, but a tuner will only make the best centerfire barrels more times than not, shoot the best even though some of the centerfire guys don't know it with some of the groups they are shooting without tuners currently. Rimfire shooters are at the mercy of the rimfire ammo manufacturers. That is why all the serious rimfire benchrest shooters have tuners on the end of their barrels. They all know that they in fact will make their barrels shoot better than without a tuner.

The settings the book has on the Boss if you buy a Browning are deadnut to be the same from gun to gun and by that I mean from type(A-Bolt to A-Bolt or Bar to Bar). The sweet spot on the Bar for one particular load will be different than the sweet spot on the A-Bolt in the same caliber, I believe is what I seen in the book. I know on my Bar 270 that the book said to leave the BOSS on setting 2 for 130gr loads. I played with it to see going up and down from this setting. The groups in fact did get bigger when I did so. So I just left it on setting 2.

I hope this helps to better clarify what a tuner does for a barrel. Actually the right weight on a tuner at the end of a barrel is probably more important than being at the right sweet spot on too light of a tuner. Remember this fact that some may not know. I spoke to one of the best rimfire smiths in the nation, and he told me that all barrels will shoot better with the barrel being pulled downward although you can't see it with the human eye, thus explaining what I said about the heavier weighted tuners seems to be what makes a barrel shoot its best. But every barrel won't necessarily shoot its best with the heavier weight tuner. Some may shoot better with a 8oz tuner vs say a 16oz tuner. But if I had to pick a set weight at least on rimfires, I would guess the 16oz tuner to be about the right weight tuner for a barrel to shoot its best.

Brad

Last edited by Brad Clodfelter; August 20, 2007 at 07:28 PM.
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Old August 19, 2007, 08:14 AM   #7
jeo556
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BOSS = Accuracy

From what my buddy says about the Boss it's definetly worth it. I think that the best attribute is that you do not have to find a load that your rifle loves, with the boss you can pretty much make your gun love, or at least like a lot, any load. If you handload and you don't need your gun to shoot different loads than it' propbably not worth it. Otherwise it can help accuracy a ton. I've seen groups by his .300 win mag, .270 Win, and .204 ruger that were all less than 1" at 100 yards with average off the shelf ammo. Not to mention that his .300 feels like a .270, the .270 like a .223 and someone has to let you know if you shot the .204! lol. I'm thinkinh about putting one on my .25-06 just because I'm a stickler for guns that don't move. Hope this helps.
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Old August 19, 2007, 11:09 AM   #8
Brad Clodfelter
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jeo,

You are exactly right sir.

A BOSS will help all ammo to shoot even better. That's what a tuner does. It's good to see others are starting to see this and spread the word.

I will tell you this. If anyone reading this on here does decides to buy a Browning A-Bolt or Bar rifle with the BOSS system, I would encourage all to buy the optional BOSS-CR(conventional recoil) weight and take the ported one off. The one that comes with the rifle(ported version) is way too loud for your ears. It does help to reduce recoil. But for hunting purposes unless you are wearing muffs to protect your ears, your gonna damage them.

Brad

Last edited by Brad Clodfelter; August 19, 2007 at 02:16 PM.
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Old August 19, 2007, 08:50 PM   #9
BBush
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Thanks to everyone for clearing things up....
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Old August 19, 2007, 09:34 PM   #10
Brad Clodfelter
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Glad to help.

Let us know what you end up getting.

Brad
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Old August 20, 2007, 11:00 PM   #11
defence18
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Quote:
I will tell you this. If anyone reading this on here does decides to buy a Browning A-Bolt or Bar rifle with the BOSS system, I would encourage all to buy the optional BOSS-CR(conventional recoil) weight and take the ported one off. The one that comes with the rifle(ported version) is way too loud for your ears. It does help to reduce recoil. But for hunting purposes unless you are wearing muffs to protect your ears, your gonna damage them.
I too encourage this. I shot my first buck with my father's A-Bolt .30-06 with the standard ported boss. My right ear literally rang for 2 weeks. I actually went to the doctor to check for possible damage. After that, my father bought the Boss-CR.
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Old August 20, 2007, 11:24 PM   #12
taylorce1
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I don't like the boss ported or non-ported. I suppose if you wanted to get the best possible groups out of factory ammunition this might be a good thing. I hand load for accuracy and all the boss does is screw up the good looks of most hunting rifles.

If I had a dedicated target rig like the one pictured then I might be tempted to get a non ported boss, or a barrel tuner like the one pictured. I will not hunt near anyone using a muzzle brake or ported barrel of any kind. I refuse to shoot next to someone using the same at the local range, regardless of how much hearing protection I'm using.

While hunting in Alaska my friend used a T/C Contender in .358 JDJ with a ported barrel. While shooting to confirm zero and to shoot his bear I stayed a good 20-25 feet behind him with ear plugs in place. That is as close as I wanted to get next to that hand cannon.
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Old August 20, 2007, 11:50 PM   #13
Brad Clodfelter
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taylorforce1,

I understand how you feel. But actually the BOSS would only make your handloads shoot better. How much, I can't say. But a tuner on any barrel will make it shoot even better. Now for hunting purposes you may not need the BOSS, but I never once complained about any gun being too accurate.



Brad
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Old August 21, 2007, 04:58 AM   #14
SeanB
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Have had an extensive play with the BOSS on a 270 Medallion. Well worth a try but please buy the BOSS-CR ( conventional recoil) for the sake of your hearing as the standard BOSS is so bloody noisy you will want to sharpen the muzzle on concrete and use it as a bloody spear.
Yours in not being deaf
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Old August 21, 2007, 07:06 AM   #15
taylorce1
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Brad, I still couldn't have one on my hunting rifles. My loads generally give me 1-1.5" accuracy and that is good enough for the hunting I do. My .270 produces groups like the second one you posted on a regular basis with my reloads and no barrel tuner. I do like sub MOA rifles but they are not necessary for the kind of shooting I love to do.
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Old August 21, 2007, 03:40 PM   #16
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I have 2 stainless stalkers both with comped BOSS systems... I love both...

one is in 338 Win Mag, the other in 375 H&H Mag... a standard ear plug loosely in your ears will tame enough noise to "keep your hearing" & the compensator is definately appreciated on those big boomers...

I've been wanting a 7mm - 08 with a boss system... on that one, I'd like the standard no comp BOSS though...
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Old August 21, 2007, 07:18 PM   #17
Brad Clodfelter
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taylorforce1,

If you have a hunting rifle that will shoot 5 shots at 50yds even close to the last group I posted, you got a real barn burner. I have yet to see a factory barrel rifle shoot anywhere close to being consistant as the original factory Suhl barrel or the now Benchmark barrel I have on it with maybe the exception of some Rem 40X's or Win 52D's. But what do I know. That Suhl would smoke my Browning Bar(BOSS) or Rem 700 Sendero for 5 shot groups at 50yds. And on calm days at 100yds, it will still turn in some 5 shot groups that a dime will cover all 5 shots. I know because I have done it. And that's just a 22lr.

Brad
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Old August 21, 2007, 07:36 PM   #18
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I just had my new A-Bolt to the range for the first time today. Mine's a .223 without the BOSS, naturally. The trigger adjusted to it's lightest setting breaks at exactly 4 lb. Two different factory loads both went into an average of 1 1/2" at 100m. It's the sporter weight barrel and seems to hold group size even when the barrel is hot. I expect it will get better with some tweaked handloads. I've only fired 80 rounds but I like it so far.

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Old August 21, 2007, 07:44 PM   #19
Brad Clodfelter
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We will make this simple as can be. Go shoot your high powered rifle with handloads at just 25yds. That way there won't be any excuses. Here's one I shot with my original Suhl factory barrel that is a little out of round. No reloads, just good ole Eley ammo. That group was .021 from being perfect. I need more practice.



And here's one of them 5 shot dime size groups. Shooting a 22lr at 100yds is tough, but on calm days a good one will give a lot of centerfires all they want for accuracy. .375ctc



Here's one more to prove the above group wasn't luck. A dime will cover all 5 shots on this one as well. This one was with only $3 a box ammo, too. I have a few more lying around here as well. I have only shot the Suhl twice at 100yds. I will try and do it again on another calm day. Not too many hunting rifles I have seen with reloads or not, have been able to do this. But for a 22lr gun to do groups this small ain't too shabby.

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Old August 21, 2007, 09:26 PM   #20
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Brad,

Not quite that good I generally have 1 flier at 100 yards best group to date is just under .5" with four rounds touching. But the rifle is pretty consistent at less than 1" groups if I take my time and do the job right on the sandbags. It will take me 15-20 min to shoot a sub MOA group with my .270. Since I never hunt with a hot barrel, I never let it get that way at the range.

Like I said we measure our rifles accuracy differently you like little bitty groups. I like to measure mine by these:

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Old August 21, 2007, 10:24 PM   #21
Brad Clodfelter
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Nice pictures.

Do you have anymore?
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Old August 21, 2007, 10:39 PM   #22
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I'll show you one more souvenier. I did have one flier that went low.

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