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Bolt and Barrel Pairs


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I’ve been offline for a while now.

Once my first .308 build was done I began reloading and striving for accuracy.  I never have quite figured out what shoots best, yet.  But building and working on these guns sure is satisfying even if the best result is clean cycling and a 2 moa group.  

We have all most likely learned a lesson or trick or two and gather more experience with this Platform....

I just learned a few days ago to not so quickly blame a Bolt Carrier company for failed headspace, based on just one barrel alone. Even if that same barrel passed the Go No-go tests with another bolt.  

I learned this lesson with two Faxon barrels and two bolts from Daytona Tactical and Sharps.

My first Faxon 18” Match series barrel fit perfectly with the Daytona bolt. 

A clymer go/No-go rental set was used to check the headspace.

My Sharps backup bolt failed on this barrel and I cried foul to their company.  Their gunsmith talked me out of an exchange, but I wasn’t convinced with his field gauge argument. So I thought I’d just end up with over stretched reloading brass if I ever used that bolt.


I then got the build bug again, so I bought a Faxon Pencil 16” Duty Series and checked the headspace with both of those same bolts, and this time the Sharps passed the tests perfectly but the Daytona failed the Go Test!  

It was my lucky day I got this other Tighter chambered Pencil barrel which has its perfect match with the Sharps Bolt. 

I’ve read about different sized bolts and different sized “spec” chambers, but I have not seen the tolerance stacking or variables until just now.

I sent an email apologizing to Sharps and I’m excited to have my lighter hunting LR-308 for the days to come.

I got a Titanium Muzzle break for the light barrel for 35 bucks from 2a- armament and although it may not work as good as some others, it only weighs 1.7 oz.  

I partially broke in the pencil barrel today using just open sights at 35 yards, and am pleased with the results.  First shot 1/2 inch under the Bullseye, second shot 1/2 under the bullseye, the next break in five shot group was bigger but probably fair for using open sights... about a radius of 3.5 inches at 35 yards... using bipod and laying prone. I do need to work on shooting open sights better than this but I’ll probably move on to a 4x scope    When my rings show up in the mail.

Moral of this story:  Don’t jump the gun if a bolt or barrel fails the headspace tests, just pray that you get lucky and get another barrel/or bolt that does pass the tests.

Adios Amigos

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That is a light muzzle brake. By my scales, an A2 birdcage weighed 1.75 oz and a Precision Armament M4-72 (which went into by hunting build) weighed 3.20 oz.  Curious what the total weight of your hunting build came 2.  Mine ended up just under 9#, including Alumina lens caps for the Leupold 50mm scope and an empty 10 round Pmag. Photos attached are of a couple of not quite final configurations.

WW308 on the scales 2.jpg

WW308 on the scales.jpg

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14 hours ago, MtnMike said:

That is a light muzzle brake. By my scales, an A2 birdcage weighed 1.75 oz and a Precision Armament M4-72 (which went into by hunting build) weighed 3.20 oz.  Curious what the total weight of your hunting build came 2.  Mine ended up just under 9#..........



I’ll let you know MtnMike... I’ve got some scope rings showing up tomorrow, Medium height Warne Mntn tech rings which are also pretty light...just high enough for my old Weaver 4x scope.  So my weight will be with that scope, which is much smaller, but I’ll add some bullets into the 10 round mag to compensate to match your scope weight.  My bolt is not light weight, nor is my heavy 5.2oz buffer, but ohh well.  I’ll send a picture maybe tomorrow,Friday or early next week.  I’m just going to be glad the gun isn’t as front heavy as my other upper acted like last year.  Of course I had the longer barrel on it, a magpul bipod, and metal unused backup sights on it.  This new upper will be bare bones.  I was lucky with my other setup as it was to hit a pizza pan off hand shooting at a hundred yards. Just couldn’t hold er steady.


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@DustBuster  I confess, after reading your post yesterday, I ordered one of those $35 a2 titanium brakes. I remember thinking the gun felt a tad front heavy when I first added the PA-M4-72 on it.  Though I quickly got used to it.  But, I'm not going to mess with it until after deer season.  Everything is dialed in, and season is right around the corner in SC where I'll be primarily hunting this year. Getting 1" groups @ 100yds with plain vanilla 150g Fed Powershok. 

I do plan to try to reduce the weight by 6 to 8 oz. for next season.  Just to do it.  Figure the brake is 1.5 oz.  Can probably cut the rest of the weight by switching mounts and backing from 50mm to 40 mm scope. I like Leupold scopes because they are made in the US and pretty light.  According to Leupold's website, the 50mm VX-Freedom 3-9 I have on there now is 14.6 oz. Might swap with a 40mm VX-Freedom 4-12x40;  it's listed at 13.1 oz. My current mount is 6oz as I recall. Should be room for some improvement there as well.

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Glad you got a T brake too.  Probably won’t work as good as your M4-72, but will be way quieter to you and your hunting spotter 🙂  The price was right for our new lightweight Muzzle Ornaments.  I need to figure out a way I can push a button and my Mlok style bipod drops off in case of a standing shot.  Others buy the picatinny bipod and put a mlok attached pic rail for quick release purposes.  Good luck this hunting season for you.  I’ll weigh my scope and add some bullet weight to match yours, will be weighing a similar outfitted gun tonight.  


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“According to Leupold's website, the 50mm VX-Freedom 3-9 I have on there now is 14.6 oz. “. 

My weaver scope/w covers is 10.7 oz.

Difference is 3.9 oz, equivalent to 4 of my live rounds plus an empty brass.

So I added that into my magazine and The weight is 9 lb 0.3oz

weight without bullets (Jockey handicap weight) is 8 lb 12.4 oz.

So essentially my gun with the shorter barrel is the same as yours, but my Titaneum brake nocks me down roughly the 3oz.  

When I was throwing the gun up checking out my scope focal distance and stuff, the barrel with my 16 inch barrel almost wanted to tip upward it is so light.  The center of gravity is now farther back than it used to be and is going to be much easier to hold on my target while standing.  No way I’m going to spend 35 bucks on Titaneum receiver parts like takedown pins, so this will be as light as this LR is ever gonna get.  I will have to shoot some more to see how it’s accuracy is like.  



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