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Old July 11, 2018, 06:37 AM   #1
Jack O'Conner
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Long vs Short Barrel

Although I occasionally hunt with the long barreled Marlin, I generally reach for my Mossberg when going on a wild hog hunt here in Florida. This is the model 464 featuring a 16 inch barrel and Marine-coat finish. Handling is superb for me! I know that there is a velocity loss factor but have not detected any difference in killing power or accuracy from the shorter barrel. However it is noticeably louder when a round is touched off.

30-30 is a keeper!

Jack



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Old July 11, 2018, 08:56 AM   #2
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Nice collection of lever 30-30s you got there Jack. One for the stand the other for the walk-a-bout "good plan"
As far as loss of velocity. That theroy depends on caliber. But~ in this case the loss is minimal. 50' per sec per inch of barrel cut at best. Nice thing about the 30-30 Jack. Those velocity & energy theory's can't take a whole lot when there's not that much speed & wallop in the first place. Hey. >Thanks for the thread and pix's.
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Old July 11, 2018, 02:20 PM   #3
T. O'Heir
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Long vs short barrel is all about velocity and increased muzzle blast. It has nothing whatever to do with accuracy or the fictitious 'killing power'.
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Old July 11, 2018, 02:41 PM   #4
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"It has nothing whatever to do with accuracy or the fictitious 'killing power'."

I beg to differ. Velocity = energy and energy relates to "killing power". How much is lost or it might not even be significant, the loss is still measurable. The surest way to emasculate a cartridge is to shorten the barrel.
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Old July 11, 2018, 03:22 PM   #5
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It is more about balance and aesthetics. With iron sights a longer sighting radius means better accuracy. My 16" barrel 30-30 is 30 fps slower than my 30-30's with 20" barrels. Going to 24" might add another 30 fps. No game animal will ever notice the difference.

Energy never killed anything. Bullet placement and expansion kill stuff. As long as a bullet impacts with enough speed to get expansion you're good to go. Too much speed results in over expansion and limits penetration, but that isn't an issue with 30-30.
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Old July 12, 2018, 07:45 AM   #6
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Energy never killed anything. Bullet placement and expansion kill stuff. As long as a bullet impacts with enough speed to get expansion you're good to go. Too much speed results in over expansion and limits penetration, but that isn't an issue with 30-30.
Please don't mistake me, I'm truly not intending to dicker - but doesn't expansion require a certain window of (kinetic) energy levels? Is energy not the function of velocity that causes matter disruption in the bullet, then by transference, the animal tissue? It would follow, to my logic, that without sufficient energy, the animal may be punctured, but not killed (and my logic is still evolving/being educated - this truly is a humbly intended question).

Or am I splitting hairs?
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Old July 12, 2018, 05:02 PM   #7
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The only time velocity doesn't play a part in "killing" is with large caliber solid bullets at short ranges and even then a "faster" solid bullet will cause more damage to bones as long as it travels straight.
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Old July 13, 2018, 04:15 AM   #8
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I have to agree with Mobuck.
While fasterr handling, there is a history of manufacturers combining too short of a barrel to get best performance, and cartridge and rifle have both suffered.
Think Rem 600, 660 in both 6.5 and 350 Rem Mag.
Also Winchester Model 100 in 284 Win.
All 3 are excellent cartridges, but the rifles held them back.

Couple of nice rifles there, Jack!
I've been eyeing up the Rossi 92 in 45 Colt. Would be a great woods gun for here in PA.
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Old July 13, 2018, 11:40 AM   #9
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Please don't mistake me, I'm truly not intending to dicker - but doesn't expansion require a certain window of (kinetic) energy levels? Is energy not the function of velocity that causes matter disruption in the bullet, then by transference, the animal tissue? It would follow, to my logic, that without sufficient energy, the animal may be punctured, but not killed (and my logic is still evolving/being educated - this truly is a humbly intended question).

Or am I splitting hairs?
Your logic seems basically sound, but there are things you need to realize to get a more precise understanding.

First, energy is just a calculated number. Meaning very little by itself, it is a useful standard for comparing dissimilar things.

Yes, there is a minimum amount of "energy" needed to get a bullet to (and better, through) a vital spot. There are a lot of factors involved, including bullet velocity at impact, the varying degrees of resistance in flesh and bone, the bullet construction, etc.

Primitive man killed animals by shoving pointy sticks into vital spots. When some genius figured out they could put sharp stones on the end of the sticks, it worked even better. Same energy though.

You can load a .22-250 and a .45-70 to the same energy level. Their effect on game is radically different despite identical energy.

Energy = force, but without considering how that force is applied, its just a number. Lets say an NFL linemen tackles you with 360ft/lbs of force. Hurts. Knocks you around. Now say a 9mm or .45 bullet hits you with that same 360ft/lbs of force. MUCH different effect!!

We use the term "energy" to cover a number of things, and since it is calculated from physical factors (mass & speed) it can be used in relationship to anything moving. But as a stand alone number it is only useful as a comparison, a way to show one thing being more or less than another.

Nothing gets more dead than dead, and a rifle with twice the energy of a pistol doesn't kill anything "deader" than the pistol does. Other factors make a difference in how efficient the performance is, and these can be expressed comparatively using energy numbers.

SO it can look like it is energy that is responsible (and it is, ultimately the energy that drives the bullet is what does all the work) but energy "numbers" don't DO the work, they are just our convenient way of describing ALL the things that work together to get the job done.
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Old July 13, 2018, 06:08 PM   #10
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I beg to differ. Velocity = energy and energy relates to "killing power".
Show me a formula. If velocity equaled killing power, then everyone would hunt with a 17 Remington. And before you go off telling everyone about "ft-lbs of energy", let me tell you that the lbs/ft of energy calculation gives a fictitious energy unit and only supports the argument for high velocity/low mass bullets. Lots of famous firearms inventors from Charles Newton (of 22 Savage High Power fame) to Roy Weatherby (claimed the 257 Weatherby would kill just by passing close to an animal) all believed in the benefits of light bullets at high speed. All have been debunked. Velocity by itself only flattens the trajectory of the projectile.

1/2 mass X velocity squared/acceleration of gravity
=lbs X ft squared/second squared/32 ft/sec squared= lbs/ft energy (?)

Contrast that with
M X V= momentum (argument for slow, heavy bullets)

Here it is: what kills animals is hypoxia caused by lack of oxygenated blood to the tissues in order to keep heart beating and brain working OR central nervous system damage. Just about nothing else kills an animal (as far as hunting is concerned). Wound channels accelerate blood loss. Energy does not kill. If so, arrows would never kill an animal.
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Energy never killed anything. Bullet placement and expansion kill stuff.
Bullet placement, yes. Some areas of the world do not allow expanding bullets, yet people there still manage to kill animals. Expansion only serves to assist in energy transfer by increasing frontal diameter to slow the bullet quickly as it penetrates the animal. Note that expansion can easily work against you when it happens too quickly or the bullet fails to penetrate to the vitals.
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It would follow, to my logic, that without sufficient energy, the animal may be punctured, but not killed (and my logic is still evolving/being educated - this truly is a humbly intended question).
Punctured will kill the animal, perhaps not immediately but collapsed lungs or loss of blood will kill it. Animals do not have access to trauma surgeons. Think spears and arrows. Think knives. Think about the first colonists who landed on the North American continent. Hunting bears, deer, elk, moose, and the occasional indian with 32 to 45 caliber smoothbores or rifles. Many black powder cap and ball firearms will not generate 200 ft-lbs of energy, so how did they kill? Shot placement from close range meant increased odds of hitting a vital spot.

Terminal ballistics is interesting stuff, worth reading. But a lot of the stuff you read in hunting magazines is written by untrained tyros who read something written by someone who read something about ballistics. Most writers are not engineers, they are English majors. Engineers write boring stuff. English majors take classes teaching them to be interesting writers, to captivate their audiences. Most are good at that. Just not good engineers.
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Old July 14, 2018, 12:10 AM   #11
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All other things being equal, a shorter barrel will give you better MOA accuracy than a longer barrel. It is true that you won't get as much velocity from the shorter barrel, but the shorter barrel will be "stiffer" than a longer barrel. That means that the vibration induced oscillations will be smaller for the shorter barrel rifle, and that will give you tighter groups.
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Old July 14, 2018, 01:13 AM   #12
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...energy is just a calculated number. Meaning very little by itself...
This is simply not true.

Kinetic energy is a physical quantity which has been experimentally proven to be the potential of a moving object to do work. In the context of ballistics, it relates to potential of a projectile to cause damage/penetrate.
Quote:
Energy = force, but without considering how that force is applied, its just a number.
Energy does not equal force, but force can be calculated from the change in energy and the distance over which the energy was changed.

Force = (Energy change) / (distance over which the energy change was accomplished)

In other words, if the energy of a projectile is reduced by 100ftlbs as it travels through a 1 foot thick target, the total amount of force applied to the target is 100lbs. It should be noted that not all of this force is applied in the direction that the projectile moves.

It is useful to understand energy, and it is certainly useful for more than just comparisons. However, it does not tell the entire story of terminal ballistics by itself. In fact, it is only a small part of the overall, very complicated, picture.
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Velocity = energy and energy relates to "killing power".
Velocity is not equal to energy although kinetic energy can be calculated from velocity (squared) and mass.

Neither velocity nor kinetic energy can be directly related to "killing power" in general, although both of them certainly have an impact (pun intended) on the potential of a projectile to cause damage.
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...let me tell you that the lbs/ft of energy calculation gives a fictitious energy unit and only supports the argument for high velocity/low mass bullets.
This is pure bunk and contradicts centuries of established science. Kinetic energy is not fictitious in the least and anyone who wants to know the truth doesn't have to work too hard to find it given the huge amount of information that is readily available to everyone with access to the internet.

Kinetic energy was not developed to sell anything, it was discovered (it already existed before scientists quantified it) long before anyone was arguing about velocity and mass of bullets. If you believe otherwise, then please provide some evidence of which ammunition company Gottfried Leibniz was working for when he discovered kinetic energy in the late 1600s? Also, which bullet was Emilie du Chatelet marketing when she did her experiments confirming the validity of Liebniz's energy theory in the early 1700s? What where the Bernoulli brothers and Gravesande selling?

It's one thing for someone to admit they don't understand what kinetic energy is, or how it affects the real world, or how it relates to terminal ballistics, it's another thing entirely to claim it is just a fictitious number, that it was developed for marketing ammunition or to support a pet theory about ballistics, etc.

For around 300 years, the scientific/technical community has accepted the equation as the correct quantification of kinetic energy and has not only experimentally verified it repeatedly, but also relied upon it to produce accurate and precise results in the real world.

Kinetic energy is not just the product of an equation or solely a mathematical construct, it really does exist in the real world. It really does affect the real world. It really does provide a measure of the potential of a moving object to do work. Understanding it really does allow a person to predict certain aspects of how a real-world moving object will interact with other real-world objects. It’s certainly not the entire story, when it comes to terminal ballistics, but it is definitely part of the story (a small part) and understanding it properly will provide insight that is obscured if one tries to ignore it.

There's a lot of readily available information out there for people who want to educate themselves on the topic.

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/ke.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinetic_energy

http://www.auburn.edu/academic/class...c%20Energy.php

https://www.khanacademy.org/science/...kinetic-energy

http://thesimonscenter.org/wp-conten...17-pg62-68.pdf

As far as the OP's question is concerned, the difference in velocity due to the barrel length difference is not likely to have any significant effect on the lethality of projectile. Not because velocity, or energy, or momentum decreases are meaningless or made up or fictitious, but because the velocity/energy/momentum decrease is not significant when going from a 20" barrel to a 16" barrel.
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Old July 14, 2018, 08:44 AM   #13
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While I concur that longer barrels mean higher velocity, I think the debate is academic. Most shots with guns such as these are under 300 yards where it won't make much of a difference. Harvesting meat is what is important.
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Old July 14, 2018, 09:18 AM   #14
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My 336, 30-30 is the long barreled one. 24", and it it were 26" I'd like it even batter. But it shoots extremely well and is a good tool for killing deer, antelope coyotes foxes skunks and most other things we find around here that we need to kill. I would not use it for elk, but that's only because I own other more powerful rifles. However with my 170 grain loads, if I ever found myself on an elk hunt and I had it with me I am sure I could do the job too. Having killed cattle and horses with a 30-30 I know I can kill an elk if I needed to.

I don't use a scope, and the longer sight radius helps my old eyes. Using a peep sight extend the sight radius a lot and the extra 4" of barrel helps too.

If you are using a scope the long barrel does nothing for you but add some speed as noted above, but for the game shot with a 30-30 at the ranges it's used, I seriously doubt the extra velocity is all that helpful. Bullet weight is the key with a 30-30 in my experience. For deer up to about 165 pounds it makes no difference, but big western Mule deer and ranch animals have shown me that the 150 grain bullets don't penetrate near as well as the 170. It would seem that 20 grains would not be that much, but I expect the jackets may be thicker on the 170 grain bullets. I don't actually know, but I have never once had a 150 grain 30-30 exit a mule deer and I have never failed to have an exit with a 170 in a mule deer. One I killed in Nevada dressed at 238 pounds and the 30-30 still exited him and broke a bone on it's way out. I like the 170s.
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Old July 15, 2018, 05:02 PM   #15
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wow,,, it's threads like this that I love reading... people WAY more knowledge than I spitting out information debating minutia, but minutia that makes a difference. Loving this.
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Old July 15, 2018, 08:53 PM   #16
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I won't get into the debate about longer or shorter barrels and energy. I believe what I have read from Finn Aagaard and African hunters who's prime requirement in a bullet was penetration in a straight line. Most preferred FMJ bullets or non expanding bullets. One hunter bragged that his rifle, a 6.5 of some sort had "never been polluted with a soft nosed bullet".

Many years ago Brian Pearce of Rifle magazine wrote an excellent article on the 30-30 and he stated the velocity loss he got per inch of barrel was between 17 and 20 fps. So go from a 24" barrel to a 16" barrel and you should at least in theory lose around 135 to 160fps.

If a 160fps loss means the difference between a killed or a wounded animal with a well placed shot you aren't using enough gun to begin with IMHO.

And I like the looks of that short barrel Mossberg. And I am with the Wyosmith about the 170gr bullets over the 150gr bullets. I like heavy when I can get it.
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Old July 15, 2018, 09:23 PM   #17
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One hunter bragged that his rifle, a 6.5 of some sort had "never been polluted with a soft nosed bullet".
I believe that quote was from W. D. M." Karamojo" Bell. If you want to know why he was called "Karamojo", perhaps it would be informative to understand that 'W. D. M.' stood for 'Walter Dalrymple Maitland'. Nickname aside, he was a truly extraordinary rifle shot, reported to have been skilled enough to consistently shoot birds out of the air using a rifle.
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Old July 25, 2018, 11:42 AM   #18
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Old July 25, 2018, 06:33 PM   #19
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Something to consider. The quintessential platform to shoot 30-30 rds for the last 125yrs has been a 20" barreled Winchester Model 94 lever action carbine. Every ammo maker on the planet makes ammo for the 30-30. What do you want to bet they produce their ammo to work well on medium sized game out to about 200yds in the 20" barreled Model 94?

BTW, I'm also a fan of the 464. Great carbine, however, do you really need a carry handle on it? I practice on bowling pins at 200yds with mine. Lose the scope and try it. You'll find that it really a light weigh, handy sized, nimble platform and that those Marbles sights work well.

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Old July 27, 2018, 12:20 AM   #20
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looks

What appeals to some, may not appeal to others. Just me, but that stainless appearing finish and the laminate stock just don't look right on a lever carbine/rifle.

Sure, I get the low maintenance and durability aspect. And I like the short and handy aspect. But that combo just doesn't do it for me appearance wise.

But hey, if Jack likes it, good for him.
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Old July 27, 2018, 07:46 PM   #21
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the question of a long or short barrel depends on where you are going to be using it. In the thick brush or enclosed tight spaces I would prefer a shorter barrel. In open I would prefer a longer barrel.
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