View Full Version : Water in barrel

August 17, 2012, 04:49 PM
This morning I sat up in the stand for 3 hours in the rain.
When I got back to my truck I unloaded my rifle and noticed water in the action. I checked the bore and there was water in the bore. Not a lot but dozens of small tiny droplets which I think entered from muzzle during rain. How dangerous is it to shoot the rifle with some water in the bore? Not a lot of water but some droplets. The rifle is a Remington 700 in 30-06. Thanks

math teacher
August 17, 2012, 06:16 PM
Put a single strip of electrical tape over the end of the barrel and it will keep out water, mud, snow and other such obstructions. It absolutely will not interfere with the bullet. An entire column of air and other gasses must exit the barrel before the bullet can, and they will blast the tape away. I have tested this at 300 yards with no effect. The guides I have hunted with in northern British Columbia all tape their barrels as they hunt a lot in snow. Here in the Northwest we get a lot of rain and all tape our barrels, With an open top rifle such as a model 94, you could get a few drops of water in from the action, though it isn't easy. As stated above it won't hurt. Before I learned to tape the barrel on my 7mm mag, I used to get some small dents in the sholder of the case from water in the barrel. You should still run a dry patch through the barrel after hunting as well as the proper care of the exterior of the gun. Do not oil the interior of the barrel if you won't have the opportunity to shoot a fouling shot before the next time you hunt as it can significantly affect the accuracy of the first shot.

August 17, 2012, 06:34 PM
Well, you are either hog hunting or in South Carolina ; ) PS See any deer??

Brian Pfleuger
August 17, 2012, 06:51 PM
A balloon on the barrel works great too.

August 17, 2012, 06:56 PM
A balloon on the barrel works great too.
Ha ha ha... and a condom too. :o

August 17, 2012, 10:04 PM
Tape the barrel as mentioned above.

There was a segment on a Long Range Pursuit episode where they proved there was no change with POI with a taped barrel.

I'm sure the air in the barrel displaced ahead of the bullet blows it completely out of the way long before the bullet gets to the muzzle as math teacher said.

August 18, 2012, 07:03 AM
Once hunting season starts all of my hunting rifles have the muzzle taped, not just in the rain. It keeps out other debris that could find it's way in there while walking through the woods or if you were to drop your rifle. It also helps protect the crown from damage.

I also keep about an extra foot or so of tape wrapped around the barrel as spare tape. A lot of other hunters have asked me about this. I tell them I'm shooting really hot handloads and the extra tape helps keep the barrel from splitting from the hot loads.;)


Major Dave (retired)
August 18, 2012, 09:53 AM
the balloon route. A small green one, as a matter of fact. I keep a package of them in my hunting kit.

August 18, 2012, 12:42 PM
Keep the barrel pointed down. I have never seen water run uphill.

August 18, 2012, 12:43 PM
I've hunted in the rain many times, and never considered covering the muzzle with anything. The tape is probably a good way to keep it dry, but... As far as getting things wet, just pull the bolt out and let it dry, and use oil sparingly as usual.

August 18, 2012, 02:03 PM
Keep the barrel pointed down. I have never seen water run uphill.

But it can enter from the action and run down the barrel, or if you stumble and fall the muzzle is the first thing in the mud.

Tape over the muzzle, muzzle up and you eliminate most problems. Nothing is perfect. If your rifle gets fully submerged in a fall, then you have to remove the tape to completely drain the barrel. I've had to retrieve a couple from the bottom of a swamp or stream before I could continue a hunt.

It is such a simple thing to do, and there are almost no downsides. Pressure in the barrel blows the tape, balloon, condom, or whatever you use off before the bullet gets there. I had to try it at the range to convince myself it wouldn't effect POI.

I highly recommend it at all times, water is not the only obstruction that could find its way into your barrel.

August 18, 2012, 02:54 PM
I'll go with the tape idea. I wouldn't want to have to explain to my wife why I had condoms in my hunting bag.:)

August 18, 2012, 03:01 PM
I wouldn't want to have to explain to my wife why I had condoms in my hunting bag.

Ahhhh... drinking water bladders? For the dog? Maybe? :rolleyes:

math teacher
August 18, 2012, 05:44 PM
It is also OK to wrap a muzzle brake with tape or cover it with a baloon to keep out water and debris. It will simply blow away.

August 18, 2012, 06:43 PM
If the gun is a pistol in a holster, and it rains so hard that the holster fills up with water, and the pistol gets completely submerged, the downward pointing barrel will still get mighty wet.
If that ever happens to you, remember to shake the gun out real good before firing a round.

August 18, 2012, 07:41 PM
There is such a thing as a "rain shot". I have a book written by a competition bench shooter "Glenn Newick" that states a drop of rain in the bore can deflect a bullet significantly. When trying to beat the record 5 shot under 1/32 MOA at 100 yrds, rain can ruin a match. For hunting medium to large game water is not as significant, but could be a limiting factor at long ranges.

August 18, 2012, 08:01 PM
Rain affects shooters more then rifles.

I don't worry about it, and I've shot a heck of a lot of high power matches in the rain.

As too "does it hurt to shoot with water in the barrel" :

I was in SE Asia on a patrol, I was carrying a M-60 at the time and was covering a river crossing. As most no, point men keep their gun on fire, not safe. Our point man cross the river at a deep spot requiring him the swim, over hand or free style. He and his rifle in his right and as he swam, about the third time the rifle hit the water he had his finger on the trigger and let loose a burst. Didn't hurt him or the rifle.

Not something I'd recommend.

August 18, 2012, 08:24 PM
As long as the water drains out the barrel should be ok. If there is significant water in the barrel you can ring the barrel or worse.

August 18, 2012, 08:24 PM
Finger cots. http://www.fingercots.net/

Check the ones at the top left---look like
condoms for the --well---size challenged?:D

Heck of a conversation starter out in the woods.

August 18, 2012, 09:45 PM
That was one of the reasons the Military issued condoms.
The reason Peace Officers went to open toed holsters, or at least a plug with a hole in it, was to let the water drain out in case you submerged the holster or you had to work in a hard rain.

August 19, 2012, 04:59 PM
A balloon (or condom) works great on then end of the barrel when hunting in the rain.

August 28, 2012, 04:11 PM
So much for being Sneeky huh captain....:mad:

August 28, 2012, 05:00 PM
I've used tape on my shotguns,muzzle loaders
and rifles for years.No problems