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Old May 24, 2013, 12:52 PM   #51
Jerry45
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So whats the word on your rifle?
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Old May 24, 2013, 01:45 PM   #52
Dixie Gunsmithing
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One question is, I am wondering if the gun was used in some greatly different humidity settings? Maybe stored where it is very low humidity, and was really humid weather at the range? I'm wondering is the wood isn't moving around over it, or is just starting to for some reason or another. Something doesn't sit well with me on this, as if it is bedded correctly, the action shouldn't budge, and since the barrel is floated, it shouldn't be tipping the stock at any time.
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Old May 24, 2013, 06:39 PM   #53
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The latest. . . one of the guys working in the shop had a HS precision stock set up for the Rem 700 short action varmint barrel.

We dropped the gun into that stock and it still shot like crap.

The gunsmith suffered a stroke and died without ordering a new barrel.

I picked up the rifle and took it to another gunsmith and we started looking at the barrel closer. The barrel accepts a .220 in. - tolerance pin ( .2198 in. actual ) freely from muzzle to bolt face. The nominal bore for the barrel as well as I have been able to determine should be .218 in..

We are going to put a new barrel on the gun and probably not another stainless one.

I am expecting the rifle back in a week or so and we will see how that shoots.

I did not shoot hot loads through that gun at any point. I was shooting 52 gr. SMK and 38 gr. H380. They worked fine up until they did not work worth a crap.

When I get the rifle back, I have the action in a better stock, I have new glass and mounts so it should shoot fine. I am just bummed the barrel would go away at a thousand rounds.
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Old May 24, 2013, 11:38 PM   #54
Jerry45
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Not only is it odd that the barrel would go away at a thousand rounds but also that it just went. I would have expected decreeing accuracy not just bang gone. Sounds like you're going to end up with whole new setup. Hope it's a shooter for you. Post after you put a few rounds down range.
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Old May 27, 2013, 12:29 PM   #55
Dixie Gunsmithing
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I'm with Jerry45 on this, as if it shot well beforehand, and went to pitts after putting it up for a while, it shouldn't have changed, but shot the same afterwards too. The only thing that could cause this, that I could think of, is a dirty barrel, and the time allowed the carbon/copper to settle in and dry. Also, that action shouldn't move around, at all, so you need that looked at.

Try plugging the muzzle with a patch, then fill the barrel with a good cleaner, and let it sit for a couple or three of days, then, after draining it, clean it as normal, using a brush, then a patch with a jag. I'd try this before purchasing a new barrel just yet.
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Old June 7, 2013, 07:04 AM   #56
geetarman
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So. . .here we are again.

Heading out to the range in a few with the rifle.

It has been glass bedded in an HS precision stock. It has a new factory chrome moly barrel. It has a new Leupold VXIII 6.5-20 in Warne rings.

I have two different factory loads and two different hand loads.

I have the rifle boresighted and will probably put no more than 15 rounds down it today. I will let you know how it does.
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Old June 7, 2013, 08:52 AM   #57
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I would have slugged the barrel (like a milsurp) to get a true measurement on the groove diameter. The groove dia. could have been to spec, with "thinner" lands. I don't see how the rifling could have been worn far outta spec suddenly for such a change in performance.

Good luck with the new barrel.
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Old June 7, 2013, 11:48 AM   #58
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The gunsmith got it right. After sighters, the rifle put 5 into a quarter at 100 yards.

It will shoot better with handloads.
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Old June 7, 2013, 03:53 PM   #59
Jerry45
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Glad to hear you got it shooting again. Enjoy!
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Old June 8, 2013, 09:30 AM   #60
geetarman
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This is what I shot yesterday with Winchester premium factory ammo.

Handloads should do much better. 5 shots at 100 yards.
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Old June 8, 2013, 12:48 PM   #61
Dixie Gunsmithing
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I've got to say, that I have never heard of any gun doing this, and what caused it has me totally bamboozled. I understand the new barrel shooting okay, but what could cause a barrel to shoot like crap over being stored for a bit, when before, it was perfect? I guess I'll stay stumped on it, as I can't see rifling changing over being stored, unless for rust, or dirt, and you didn't have that.
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Old June 8, 2013, 01:31 PM   #62
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I talked to the gunsmith yesterday that did the original barrel change. I told him that we were able to drop a -2 .220 pin ( .2198 ) freely through the barrel.

What he said to me was very interesting. He said regardless of nominal barrel dimensions, some barrel makers deviate from the design because experience has taught them what works best for their application.

He said you can look at a Shilen microgroove barrel and compare that to a Douglas and the depth of rifling is like night and day. Each manufacturer tries to produce what works best for them.

I don't know exactly what to believe now.

What I DO know:
1) The rifle was rebarreled with a Douglas Premium barrel in 2009 and shot pretty good for a while. 926 rounds.

2) The rifle was bedded at the time the barrel was installed and the action was trued.

3) The rifle shot pretty good up until a little over a year ago. It was cleaned and stored in a safe for a year.

4) The rifle did not shoot worth a crap after bringing it out of the safe.

5) The rifle was checked for anything wrong with the bedding and nothing was found. The action screws were re torqued and the accuracy did not improve.

6) The stock was relieved to ensure their was no contact from the barrel and accuracy did not improve.

7) The action was installed in a HS Precision stock that was made for a Remington 700 Varmint barrel. The accuracy did not improve.

8) The Nightforce scope was swapped out for a new Leupold VXIII 6.5-20 and the accuracy did not improve.

9) My handloads were withdrawn and factory rounds were shot through the gun and accuracy did not improve.

10) My handloads are loads that I have shot for over 40 years. Almost all are Sierra Match Kings and IMR4064. I now shoot a lot of H380. Nothing made the accuracy improve.

Last resort was a factory barrel that came off a Remington 700 22-250. The guy who bought the rifle wanted to rechamber the gun for something else. The barrel is a chrome-moly blue varmint weight barrel that had only been proof fired at the factory.

The picture that I posted was the result of shooting Winchester Premium 55 gr. ballistic tip bullets in nickel plated cases. I also had some Winchester 55 gr psp factory ammo that I used to get the scope sighted in.

I tried to take one logical step at a time to get to the bottom of this. I am not sure of what I could have done differently.

The proof is the rifle is shooting an ok group with factory ammo and I will bet my handloads will improve the performance.

I think the Douglas barrel was the problem and could probably have saved a bunch of money by swapping the barrel out first.

It has been a learning experience for me, however, I am happy with the way the rifle shoots now. I am bummed the old barrel went away after less than a thousand rounds. I don't know why. My handloads are not as stiff as factory rounds and should not have caused unusual wear. I had no bulged cases or blown primers. The gun just went bad and now it seems to be fixed.
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