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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Over the past year I’ve been working on reloading/shooting. I bought a Savage 10-110 Varmitter 22-250 with a 1:12 twist and a 26” barrel. It has a Vortex 4-16 optic and I mostly shoot bench rest with a bipod and rear bag. The reason I got into reloading was this gun could shoot little groups with factory (Hornady 50 gr VMax) out of the box. I thought I could do better. Hmmmm
I went from load development of .375 at 100 yards to complete crap. I checked my lands yesterday and discovered that from the first time I checked until yesterday it had moved .048 ( I verified this with 3 different bullets). I hadn’t noticed the change because I had changed materials as they came available. I went from Hornady to Lapua brass, I went from VMax to Berger match grade and on to Hodgdon H380. Since I started using the Berger and was developing a load for it my lands has moved out .012. They are 52 grain and I’m finding they are tumbling where they used to make nice round holes.
My questions are:
1. Can my barrel be done with just over 1600 rounds thru it?
2. how often should a person check the lands and adjust seating for the change?
3. Now that I know my lands is different do I adjust my seating depth to compensate or start load development all over again.
4. My SD/ES goes from 7.9/15 to 39.1/82 although I‘m usually in the teens with my SD. I’m very careful with my reloading process. Anneal, full length size, trim, chamfer and de-burr each time I reload. I also dump light and trickle to weight with each load.
5.

Thanks for this forum and thanks in advance for any help,

Mike
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Chambering? .223, no I wouldn't expect a 1600 round barrel life, unless all 1600 rounds were fired in one day. .22-250; maybe could be worn out in that short of a time.

Either way, you are probably going to be in the market for a new barrel. Good thing Savage makes them easy to change ;)

About the only thing that would make bullets start to tumble (that used to work) is a badly dented crown, or major damage to the rifling at the muzzle.
 

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Having never "shot out" a barrel in my shooting lifetime, what I'll tell you here is from what I've read and heard from sources that I considered authoritative.
1.) I get the impression that bench-resters and long range riflemen consider a barrel to be "shot out" when its group size increases by 10%. For your rifle, going from 0.375" or MOA to 0.4125" would, for them, mean the barrel has reached the end of its useful barrel life. Since I don't compete in those spheres, and enjoy varmint hunting and similar activities, I'D still consider that barrel well in the "usable" category.
2.) You don't mention that cartridge or velocities at which you launch the 50 gr./52 gr. projectiles, but higher velocities DO tend to mean shorter barrel life. Barrel life tends to vary inversely with projectile velocity.
Imagine two rifles of the same bore diameter, same steel, launching the same projectile, but one launches it at 2000 f/s and the other launches it at 2820 f/s (2000 f/s times the square root of 2). Whatever barrel life the 2000 f/s rifle has (let's say 4000 rounds) before accuracy decreases to "unusable", the higher velocity rifle will tend to reach this point in half as many rounds. A rifle with the same characteristics but with a muzzle velocity of 3000 f/s will be "shot out" at 4/9 x 4000, or 1700-1800 rounds. A rifle with a muzzle velocity twice that of the 2000 f/s rifle will tend to be "shot out" somewhere around 1000 rounds, or 1/4 the barrel life of the 2000 f/s rifle.

Now, I have NO way of predicting the barrel life of any particular rifle/caliber combination, but the above examples should give you a "rule of thumb" guideline. Speaking in the most general terms, I'D bet that 1600 rounds is the most you could expect from a .220 Swift or .22-250. From a rifle chambered for .223 or .222 Remington, I'd EXPECT a bit more barrel life, but I've been wrong about MANY things shooting-related, in my time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Chambering? .223, no I wouldn't expect a 1600 round barrel life, unless all 1600 rounds were fired in one day. .22-250; maybe could be worn out in that short of a time.

Either way, you are probably going to be in the market for a new barrel. Good thing Savage makes them easy to change ;)

About the only thing that would make bullets start to tumble (that used to work) is a badly dented crown, or major damage to the rifling at the muzzle.
Sorry I omitted the caliber. 22-250
Having never "shot out" a barrel in my shooting lifetime, what I'll tell you here is from what I've read and heard from sources that I considered authoritative.
1.) I get the impression that bench-resters and long range riflemen consider a barrel to be "shot out" when its group size increases by 10%. For your rifle, going from 0.375" or MOA to 0.4125" would, for them, mean the barrel has reached the end of its useful barrel life. Since I don't compete in those spheres, and enjoy varmint hunting and similar activities, I'D still consider that barrel well in the "usable" category.
2.) You don't mention that cartridge or velocities at which you launch the 50 gr./52 gr. projectiles, but higher velocities DO tend to mean shorter barrel life. Barrel life tends to vary inversely with projectile velocity.
Imagine two rifles of the same bore diameter, same steel, launching the same projectile, but one launches it at 2000 f/s and the other launches it at 2820 f/s (2000 f/s times the square root of 2). Whatever barrel life the 2000 f/s rifle has (let's say 4000 rounds) before accuracy decreases to "unusable", the higher velocity rifle will tend to reach this point in half as many rounds. A rifle with the same characteristics but with a muzzle velocity of 3000 f/s will be "shot out" at 4/9 x 4000, or 1700-1800 rounds. A rifle with a muzzle velocity twice that of the 2000 f/s rifle will tend to be "shot out" somewhere around 1000 rounds, or 1/4 the barrel life of the 2000 f/s rifle.

Now, I have NO way of predicting the barrel life of any particular rifle/caliber combination, but the above examples should give you a "rule of thumb" guideline. Speaking in the most general terms, I'D bet that 1600 rounds is the most you could expect from a .220 Swift or .22-250. From a rifle chambered for .223 or .222 Remington, I'd EXPECT a bit more barrel life, but I've been wrong about MANY things shooting-related, in my time.
around 3700 FPS with the Bergers. 22-250
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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So here's some more food for thought.
If I was chasing 1-hole groups for money, my definition of shot-out would be much different that a guy shooting random coyotes.

1) Point being from what it sounds like you are doing, yes it could be "shot out". Rate of fire and heat destroy barrels, and 3700fps is smoking right along.
2) Depends on what you are doing and how often. For me personally, I take stock once per year or when a known load opens up. Otherwise an eroding throat simply lowers pressure and doesn't cause issues.

3) I'm an extreme distance guy, and don't worry about much of anything at 100. However, I don't see that seating depth is as important as 98% of any source claims it to be. I think it's something else fighting you, will ages this later.
4) If that makes you happy, and achieves what you want; then cool.
As an alternative view for you:
I don't weigh charges, haven't in well more than a decade. I don't anneal much at all, I don't clean my brass almost ever, I have never uniformed my primer pockets, and I'm still using tinfoil as a way to cant the base on one of my rifles, and my load for my 308 at a mile, I'm pretty sure has a larger double digit SD. I've also shared a fun load with a 204 which is stupid accurate to minute or pigeon eyelash, but that load has an ES of more than 100fps. So don't lose your mind, over things not worth it. 🙂

What I'll bet is as Mike suggested, a crown issue; or a notably different lot of powder.

Cheers
 
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Seems to me these days that the newbie experts over think the majority of our reloading and shooting problems..first of all change your your bullets, then perhaps your powder then be happy with any group under an inch..Its all fun and games too start with..work it out, when all else fails, stick a new barrel in it...keep the barrell cool always, hot barrels will effect accuracy in some cases, but not all..there is no given...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Seems to me these days that the newbie experts over think the majority of our reloading and shooting problems..first of all change your your bullets, then perhaps your powder then be happy with any group under an inch..Its all fun and games too start with..work it out, when all else fails, stick a new barrel in it...keep the barrell cool always, hot barrels will effect accuracy in some cases, but not all..there is no given...
I’m retiring in just under 2 years and I’d like to try my hand at competitive shooting. Trying to pay my dues now.
 

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Go back to your old seating depth. The 'standard' throat in a 22-250 is WAY longer than factory ammo. Go back to what works with a clean barrel, then change one thing at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Go back to your old seating depth. The 'standard' throat in a 22-250 is WAY longer than factory ammo. Go back to what works with a clean barrel, then change one thing at a time.
I did that today. Started at my old seating depth and worked my way out by .003 to what I figured the seating depth would equal with my new lands measurement. Looks like I’m shooting paper with a shotgun.
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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Sorry I got distracted a bit ago, and didn't get to finish my thought.

You never said what powders you've used to that point, or how you cleaned it; so this may seem a bit like fishing, but hang on a moment and we'll see.

Many powders, especially those that fall into the "extreme" lineup; have coatings. Those coatings, especially in small bored, tend to rapidly accumulate a row of fouling known as "Hard Carbon". Many cleaners don't adequately address it with normal cleaning. Old time Hoppes in particular, seems quite inadequate at addressing it. If any of this fits your usage patterns, then you may need to truly and aggressively clean your barrel. Get some aggressive or modern cleaners, and scrub the heck out of the barrel. Then switch to JB Bore paste, and REALLY go to town on it. If it is a hard carbon issue, you'll see tiny black bits show up in the paste. Then you'll really have your answer.

Cheers
 

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Look at the crown REALLY close. Button rifled barrels fail quickly when the crown starts flaking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Sorry I got distracted a bit ago, and didn't get to finish my thought.

You never said what powders you've used to that point, or how you cleaned it; so this may seem a bit like fishing, but hang on a moment and we'll see.

Many powders, especially those that fall into the "extreme" lineup; have coatings. Those coatings, especially in small bored, tend to rapidly accumulate a row of fouling known as "Hard Carbon". Many cleaners don't adequately address it with normal cleaning. Old time Hoppes in particular, seems quite inadequate at addressing it. If any of this fits your usage patterns, then you may need to truly and aggressively clean your barrel. Get some aggressive or modern cleaners, and scrub the heck out of the barrel. Then switch to JB Bore paste, and REALLY go to town on it. If it is a hard carbon issue, you'll see tiny black bits show up in the paste. Then you'll really have your answer.

Cheers
I have been lax at cleaning especially aggressively. I will jump all over this.
Thanks
Mike
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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The end of the barrel, where the bullet comes out.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Getting in some practice learning how to really get a barrel clean, is not bad thing. But I think it's a little past that, if the bullet holes are no longer round, as in your first post.

I like the Bore-Tech products. However, suspect you are past the end of useful service life. In any event.... 1,600 rounds in a .22-250 is a lot closer to the barrel being scrap, then brand-new.

Would suggest if you really want to take up the target shooting game, start with something that doesn't wear out barrels quite as fast.
 

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The Shadow (Moderator)
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Need to focus, where the bore (hole the bullet comes out) and the face of the barrel meet. That transition edge. Like this

102053
 
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Any time I run across a barrel that is 'shot out', my first instinct is to clean it - clean the living daylights out of it. I have found a number of barrels that weren't shot out at all, just fouled.
And of course, others that WERE shot out.
 

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"The crown" is the last part of the gun that touches the bullet. It takes 20X to see what you need to see.
 

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