AR-15 barrel question

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Thread: AR-15 barrel question

  1. #1
    Member Array defensive007's Avatar
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    AR-15 barrel question

    Hi guys just wanted to know about barrel life on an AR rifle if you shoot the same amount of shots will the temperature a barrel gets wear it out quicker? what i mean about this is the heat a barrel generates will it wear it out quicker even shooting the same amount of rounds just letting it cool instead of constant shooting? I say this because i read online an article that mentioned letting a barrel cool between shots will extend the life of the barrel instead of shooting constant and getting hotter. We are talking about the same amount of shots fired but with cooling between shots?
    I have yet to be attacked by a block of ballistic gelatin but.........

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    If you're shooting full auto then there is definitely an acceleration of wear with sustained fire. Semi auto, not so much. Unless you are consistently doing rapid fire mag dumps. and By consistently I mean day after day for several hours a day. Your average recreational shooter/plinker will probably never shoot out a quality AR barrel. Now someone who makes a living with their AR and trains hard and regular will go through some barrels. I'm lucky if I get to shoot 2k rounds a year with mine. Some folks will do that in a day 3 times a week.
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    Ex Member Array Yankeejib's Avatar
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    My well used AR barrel has seen another 5K rounds on my watch and seems to be the same it was when I bought it. It's a chromed 1/9 5.56 Colt barrel, and does everything I expect it to do. I'm good.

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    Senior Member Array DaveJay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by luvmy40 View Post
    If you're shooting full auto then there is definitely an acceleration of wear with sustained fire. Semi auto, not so much. Unless you are consistently doing rapid fire mag dumps. and By consistently I mean day after day for several hours a day. Your average recreational shooter/plinker will probably never shoot out a quality AR barrel. Now someone who makes a living with their AR and trains hard and regular will go through some barrels. I'm lucky if I get to shoot 2k rounds a year with mine. Some folks will do that in a day 3 times a week.
    Where do I get a job like that???
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    Array HotGuns's Avatar
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    The barrels will start showing some wear around the 15-20 thousand round count. Working at a Nuclear Plant, I have seen lots of barrels need to be changed out due to wear. The security detail there trains about once a month and they'll shoot several hundred rounds at a time. The rifles get rotated out, so they do see a lot of wear and tear.

    Luvmy40 pretty well nailed it.Not much to add to that.
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    Senior Member Array jem102's Avatar
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    Yes, the hotter you get the barrel the faster the throat erodes. This may or may not be a factor depending on what the AR is set up for. Most X course shooters will change a button rifled barrel at 3,500 and a cut rifled at 5,000. For rattle battle and work under 200 yd. you will get 10,000-15,000 rounds before they won't stay on paper at 200. I saw a report from one of the DOD armorers where they sectioned a barrel with 14,000 on it and there was only 1.5" of rifling left. However they had shot an Expert score at 100 yd. with the rifle the day before. That would translate to 80 rounds all torso hits at that range, more than adequate for home defense. So shoot it with reasonable rapid fire strings and enjoy!
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    The cost of a replacement barrel will be small in comparison to the cost of the ammo required to wear it out. Think about 20,000 rounds at 30 cents a round... at that point you may be looking for a whole new gun, depending on your usage.

    I throw that one into the "don't worry about it" bucket.
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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    My buddy has an M16 with an 8" upper,he got a beta mag awhile back 100 round drums,the gun has never seen the selector on semi,everything thru the gun is full auto,about 6 months ago after probably 30-40 thousand rounds the bullets started keyholing,I have witnessed the barrel get cherry red on several occassions.
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    Member Array roadsiderob's Avatar
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    Don't worry about it. If you can afford enough ammunition to wear out a barrel, you can afford a new barrel.

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