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Catch-22

HbN users: what's your cleaning regime?

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You know what works best for reducing wear on metal to metal friction in bearings and other such high stress applications? Cleanliness. Magic coatings are snake oil.

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3 hours ago, Catch-22 said:

It's a fair question. Tubb uses and sells the stuff and believes it helps barrel life. As do a number of top State side Benchrest shooters.

Having shot benchrest many times with a 'number of top State-side benchest shooters' I don't know of a single one who uses barrel or bullet coatings.  Read MIke Ratigan's book or Tony Boyer's book (two of the world's greatest benchrest shooters) they don't even mention barrel or bullet coatings.

No top American benchrest shooter would be concerned about barrel-life anyway - only winning!  Tony Boyer doesn't take a barrel to a big match if it's had more than 100 rounds down it - but when it's had 700 down it, it's on it's way out. The competitive life of a 6PPC barrel is generally regarded to be c.1200 rounds. If any of these 'snake oils' worked in extending barrel-life, don't you think we'd be using 'em?

I well remember going to my first World Benchrest Championship in Italy in 1999 with a bag full of moly bullets - and being shocked to find I was the only shooter using moly!

Yes, Norma did conduct tests 20-odd years ago where they fired a large number of bullets into a group - the moly-coated ones held the group better as barrel-fouling built up and, if you do this kind of shooting - where there's no opportunity to clean - then there my be some advantage.

 

 

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4 hours ago, The Gun Pimp said:

Having shot benchrest many times with a 'number of top State-side benchest shooters' I don't know of a single one who uses barrel or bullet coatings.  Read MIke Ratigan's book or Tony Boyer's book (two of the world's greatest benchrest shooters) they don't even mention barrel or bullet coatings.

No top American benchrest shooter would be concerned about barrel-life anyway - only winning!  Tony Boyer doesn't take a barrel to a big match if it's had more than 100 rounds down it - but when it's had 700 down it, it's on it's way out. The competitive life of a 6PPC barrel is generally regarded to be c.1200 rounds. If any of these 'snake oils' worked in extending barrel-life, don't you think we'd be using 'em?

I well remember going to my first World Benchrest Championship in Italy in 1999 with a bag full of moly bullets - and being shocked to find I was the only shooter using moly!

Yes, Norma did conduct tests 20-odd years ago where they fired a large number of bullets into a group - the moly-coated ones held the group better as barrel-fouling built up and, if you do this kind of shooting - where there's no opportunity to clean - then there my be some advantage.

 

 

Ok some of the shooters I was referring to are perhaps classed as cross the course, high power and score shooters. Perhaps 'Benchrest' wasn't the right term to use.

So people like Joe Entrikin, Butch Lambert, Tubb, Glen Zeidiker, Paul Becigneul, German Salazar (who used Moly but I believe switched to HbN) and others have said HbN has helped to prolongue barrel life...in their opinion/experience.

Take it or leave it. Snake oil or not. Personally, I don't care what others think. But for the price of a box of bullets, if it does help to extend the life of the throat of any of my barrels, even if it's just another 100 rounds, let alone a 1000 as hoped, then it's been worth it for me.

And a thank you to those who've provided contstructive experience and insight to this discussion. 👍

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I think it's all been constructive.  😉

It's one of those products, as you say, that you'd risk buying if only because it may extend barrel life....but then again how would anyone know unless they ran two of the same barrels side by side and shot the same loads...which obviously no-one would.  It's a "take it or leave it" panacea product with marketing panache.  That can be viewed positively as well as negatively.

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VarmintLR said: " Manufacturers would have picked up on it by now. "

Call me cynical, but I can't see any yank barrel manufacturer promoting anything that might prolong barrel life..............

Pete

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Maybe not barrel manufacturers but I bet Remington, Tikka, Sako, etc would jump on the chance to say their rifles lasted longer than the competition if there was any merit to it.

Also, wouldn't it be part of various countries' milspec especially for machine guns if it could prolong life?

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In military applications, barrel life isn't as important as minimising the cleaning regime requirements and keeping things clean and oiled after training or between firefights.  Your arse is kicked if you're caught with a filthy barrel and likely kicked harder if you used anything that could attract grit and grime in a barrel.  I can't ever see the military adopting any barrel rifling coating product...they just change barrels when needed.

In civvy street, the gun scene is very much like the hifi scene.  After-market wonder aids making claims, however well substantiated usually result in controversy and circular arguments.  In hifi it's pixie dust and interconnect cables sprinkled with the stuff, or magic potion to treat connections.  In the rifle world, moly coated bullets and barrel life extender aids.  There may or may not be merit to these things.  To those who've spent the money and read the accolades, and who, perhaps have found their own merits using the stuff, then that's justification enough.  To many of us there's just too many other variables to concern ourselves with already and adding to cost and cleaning regime isn't something I'd opt for.  If I want to shoot better and preserve barrel life, I lower charge weight, avoid rapid shot strings and practice to get better.

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I just put the powder on the bullets (or else it gets the hose aga... no, stop that). It's not that time consuming to tumble them and apply a coating, as it can be done while you're up to something else :)

Cleaning regime is to wet a patch with KG1 carbon remover and push out as much of the dirt as possible (interestingly the 1st patch tends to come out copper-blue, but it's definitely labelled "carbon remover" on the bottle?), then a quick scrub with a nylon brush covered in KG1 and dry patches pushed through until they stop coming out marked. I don't bother recoating the barrel with hBN.

Introduction of extra variables: maybe, I can't really say for sure. I guess a double blind test would be a bit tricky to be set up? I can however say that my girlfriend, on only her 3rd time ever shooting, scored 50.6 from 10 shots on a 200yd F-Class target and beat me by a V-bull - so there was nothing intrinsically wrong with the setup that day. :D

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...but respectfully, it could be submitted that in all probability had b*gger all to do with what the barrel was coated in and more to do with your girlfriends competency and the consistency of your loads.

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30 minutes ago, VarmLR said:

...but respectfully, it could be submitted that in all probability had b*gger all to do with what the barrel was coated in and more to do with your girlfriends competency and the consistency of your loads.

First time my wife shot a group in probably 5 years , with my 204.

MAGIC FAIRY DUST😋😂

IMG_20190412_114229.jpg

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You need to take up knitting and hand your wife your rifle collection  Lol! 🤣

Impressive stuff.

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1 minute ago, VarmLR said:

You need to take up knitting and hand your wife your rifle collection  Lol! 🤣

Impressive stuff.

Lol, you should have seen her with her .44 magnum 😃

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On 4/12/2019 at 8:55 PM, VarmLR said:

...but respectfully, it could be submitted that in all probability had b*gger all to do with what the barrel was coated in and more to do with your girlfriends competency and the consistency of your loads.

Yup, that's what I was saying in a round-about fashion with the rest of the paragraph. ;)

I'll summarise: I don't know if it's any good. But I don't mind wasting a little more time on the process, and as it doesn't appear to make things appreciably worse I'm happy to continue. I'll try and remember to come back with barrel lifespan details when the time comes...

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