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Barrel Break-In

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I have heard both sides of the story here, yes and no. I have had several new rifless in my lifetime and have never broken in a barrel, they have always been accurate too. What do you guys think this? I have shot 5 whole rds through mine as of this writing, so don't really think it matters at this point, but then again, it can be all "rocket scientry".......

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I have always done it. There is a reason most bench rest shooters swear by it. As I understand it, ( and anyone feel free to correct me ) , unless the the barrel manufacture hand laps the barrel and then uses a bore scope to ensure its totally concentric. That's why you fire lap or season the barrel. By doing so, the copper fills in, and  smooths out the imperfections in the rifling and allowing it  to get a good smooth grip on the bullet thus obtaining  the proper spin or twist and stabilize the bullet. But then again I war a helmet when I ride my Harley but I hate wearing a seat belt lol.  

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I don't do it.  Certain premium barrel makers demand it, other premium barrel makers call it hooey.


A couple of years ago I'd found an article online by a benchrest shooter, who set out to demonstrate what happens when you don't break in a barrel properly...just to shut-up all the naysayers.


He ended up converting himself to the "no break-in required" camp.


If you choose to purchase a rifle or a barrel with a warranty conditional upon proper break-in, then do it.


For the experience, you should try hand lapping once also.


And for what it's worth, if you've fired five whole rounds at this point without following the procedure of a break-in, you've already voided someone's warranty.


Shoot it.



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Looks like I over-broke mine in then Rene.   :auto:




I'm with you there. I probably did the same thing with last AR-10 carbine that I put together. Couldn't even begin to tell you how many rounds that my son and I have probably put thru that thing. I sorta count it as, my AR-10 beater. It's turned into the kinda rifle that goes to the range with me if I plan on shooting it or not. ..........................................just because.

Edited by Rsquared
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Well I shot 2 rds through it like 2 minutes apart, then stopped, looked for the brass, couldn't find it, went to the house and got my son and came back and looked and then found it, this was like 10 min later, then let him fire the next 3 rds loaded into the magazine 1 rd at a time and this after getting up and checking our can, so it wasn't anything like rapid fire that's for sure. So would everyone recommend so more slow fire to break it in after cleaning from the first time or what??? Also, I shoot like say 5 rds and clean the bore and then do it again, would that be proper???

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ArmaLite® has spoken with several barrel manufacturers. NONE of them recommend 
breaking in barrels using abrasives. For optimum accuracy and barrel life, ArmaLite® 
recommends the following break-in procedure: 
1. Fire 9 single shots. After each shot, push a cotton patch wet with solvent through the bore. 
Then wet a bronze brush with solvent and stroke the barrel five to ten round trips. Follow with 
another wet patch and then a dry patch or two. (We do NOT recommend nylon or stainless 
steel brushes.) After you finish, wash the solvent off your brush so that the brush won’t 
2. From 10 to 30 shots, clean as above after each five shots. Initial break-in should now be 
For subsequent, normal cleaning, it is suggested that you clean after each range session. It is 
often suggested that the barrel be brushed one stroke for each shot fired. 



 I copied this from Armalites owners manual for my SASS

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I've never done it(broke one in per manufacturers specs)  on anything I have ever owned and can't really tell a difference. ??? Maybe it will make a difference on this one, soon as my glass comes in, we're going to find out......

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