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Barrel for light 3 gun rifle build?


Dwikkles
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OK guys, noob question. Sorry

1st part, what is a good yet not TOO expensive barrel that can be bought for a 3gun rifle build that will also double as a tactical SPR? Thus far i've ben looking at the Stainless Steel Noveske's but they are hard to find these days. I dont know much about match grade barrels.

Part 2 to that, I have heard that an 18" barrel is the shortest you can go if you want to use a rifle length gas system, which to my understanding is prefered for 3 gun. Does anyone use 16" barrels for matches? And does that force you to use a mid-length gas system? I ask this part because this build will be for a female of small stature so the lighter the barrel the better.

Any tips for getting started would be much appreciated. Thanks

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You can actually go as short as a 17" rifle gas (16" rifle gas barrels do exist but are pushing the edge of reliability for use at all altitudes and temperature ranges in North America). I had the same goal as you of building a 3-gun rifle that could pull double-duty as a SHTF carry rifle and did all the research, finally settling on an MSTN 17" JLT stainless steel match barrel (made by Noveske at the time) with rifle-length gas. IIRC, the barrel weighs 33oz stripped and is a medium contour tack driver.

I still run it on my main competition gun and would probably buy another one when it eventually wears out. It's almost as light as a 16" but has the very soft impulse of a rifle-length system.

The only other barrel I would consider buying would be an MSTN 16" intermediate gas system, but the weight is roughly the same as the 17" (IIRC 32oz stripped) and roughly 50fps slower from the shorter length.

That said, I am running my defensive carbine in 3-gun matches just fine--it is a PSA CHF 16" midlength lightweight barrel made for them by FNH. Weight was 28oz stripped, which does make for a notable improvement in pointability, but the barrel is not a sub-MOA barrel by any means. To tame the harsher recoil impulse of the 16" middy, I put a JP adjustable gas block on it, and it shoots almost as flat as my 17" MSTN.

I have seen fellow shooters run 14.7" carbine-gas barrels successfully making one-shot hits on 10" plates out to 500yds, so you really don't have to get a fancy-schmancy barrel for this game. You could try out a PSA CHF 14.7" lightweight midlength build (26oz stripped), also made by FNH for PSA.

Edited by dchang0
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I think any MSR barrel or part for that matter is hard to find right now. When I built mine about 4 months ago I went with a Rainier Arms barrel. It was affordable and within the specs I was looking at.

I have heard of people who have 16 barrels with a rifle length system but I have never seen one so who knows if they really exist I know plenty of people who use the 18" for reduced recoil among other reasons. I went with a 16" mid length gas system. It might have a little more recoil but I like the reduced weight for my skinny little arms!

Edited by Zmego
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DPMS is the only company I know of currently making a 16" rifle-length gas barrel. But, I do not believe it is chrome-lined (I did all this research a while ago, so I could be wrong), and it was 1/9 twist, which is just not quite enough to firmly stabilize the 75 and 77gr match bullets many of us use in this game.

The barrel I mention can be bought in this complete rifle:

http://dpmsinc.com/T...6_ep_107-1.html

I am not sure they offer it as a stripped barrel any more.

Edited by dchang0
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In my opinion, JP makes exactly the barrel that you are wanting. Their 18" light contour. It meets the requirements all except the inexpensive part. The second best would be the Nordic/Wilson barrel from nordic components. That one is 38 oz iirc. It would require a diet of some kind to get down to the 32oz of the jp barrel. Realistically, you are not going to feel the additional 4oz nearly as much as you will feel the difference between rifle and mid length gas.

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Criterion Barrels makes a barrel that fits your needs. I back ordered one through Brownells a few weeks ago and it is shipping now. If a small shooter is also going to be using this, you can help the balance for them by putting a heavier(Magpul UBR) stock on the rifle. This helps the rifle balance closer to the body and won't require as much upper body strength for them.

ETA: The 18" Hybrid contour weighs 2.3lbs, the 16" Heavy w/medium gas weighs 2.15

Edited by carbon9
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I have a 16" midlength Nordic/Lija barrel that I have been very happy with. It is turned down under the handguard, so it is light weight. Shoots smooth with a adjustable gas block and Titan brake. I prefer it over my WOA spr 18" rifle length

Agreed. Another good choice, totally forgot about it. I had the Nordic/Wilson which was similar profile wise, with the same comp, it made for a very nimble and maneuverable rifle. To the OP, the Titan is about as heavy as comps come (5oz) or so, if you find something effective for you but lighter in weight it may help your situation even more.

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Great thread. My step-son and I got in on a run of Stripped Lowers that will be shipping in February. I am gathering parts, and had similar barrel questions. So this has been great info.

Oh, in case anyone was wondering, the Lowers are from Shadow Ops, They just got a new machine delivered so they are ramping up production.

http://www.shadowopsweaponry.com/products/230-ar-15-stripped-lower-receiver-shdw-15.aspx

Edited by Niceash
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I think a mid-length 16" will serve most people well in a variety of multigun competitions. I have run my BCM gov't profile middy in several local competitions and it drives very well and is 1 MOA accurate when I do my part. Weighs 6.5 pounds too!

The flip side is I am building an 18" rifle length for dedicated 3-gun. Weight is going to be significantly higher but I am willing to trade it out. Having both types of rifles will allow me to choose which I want to shoot in various comps.

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.223 = .223

5.56 = .223 and 5.56

Wylde = .223 and 5.56

Some say that the Wylde chamber has a higher potential for accuracy than 5.56, but I've had sub MOA barrels with both. I suspect the developement for Wylde probably had more to do with Brady Bill legislation than with performance, but that is just a guess. If you find a quality barrel to the specs you desire, you shouldn't hessitate to run either chamber.

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I have 4 of the bbls mentioned above.

The 17" JLT, 18" WOA, 16 Nordic/lilja, and the 16" MSTN intermediate.

I find them all very accurate. After chasing every last little bit of performance and weight difference I have come to one conclusion.

It's the shooter, not the arrow.

That being said I think I need to practice a lot more and I seem to like a shorter bbl much better for most 3 gun(90% of shots being <100 yds)

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