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How to Break-In a Rifle Barrel with Steve Wild


I’m Steve Wild and this morning we’re going to change the barrel on my Blaser R8 Professional Success from .308 to .223 and run the barrel in. The first thing I’ve got to do because it’s in its .308 format is strip it down, so we’re just going to take the scope off, like so. Trigger mech out. Take the bolt slide off. And then remove the barrel. The barrels secured with just two allen screws. The reason we’re changing it from .308 to .223 is because it’s early March now and lambing seasons coming and I want to use it for more foxing then I am doing for deer stalking. So, that’s the barrel removed just by undoing the screws there, hopefully we should have all the bits and pieces we need in here on barrel. Calibers correct .223, perfect. So, just drop it into the locating holes there, turn him over. There we go, that’s the barrel in. Now we’ve got to change the bolt face, which is quite simple to do. There is a little retaining clip in there and put your fingernail in, lift him up and release and that’s the .308 bolt face released. We should have the .223 bolt face. Put the .308 one in there so it doesn’t get dirty. .223 perfect and it is as simple as taking it out and just push it up the firing pin and the spring, Push it back so it locates and close the clip and then replace the slide. Slides back on There we go, that’s that. Now, because the magazine is incorporated into the trigger mechanism, we’ve got to remove that as well, which is simple enough. It’s just a plastic clip in that’s a .308 magazine out and then we’ve got the .223 one two go back in. Just check it. Yeah, .223 rim perfect. There you go, clips in. Clips back in there. Just re-fit the scope. Okay, there we go. Now, we’re good for bore sighting and start the process of running the barrel in. So, there we are, that’s the rifle rebuilt up in its .223 format. What I’m going to do now, I’m just going to close a bolt into the breech just dry fire it basically, just make sure everything’s meshed together how it should do just my own peace of mind. It’s a Blaser, so it will have done, but just my own peace of mind. take the safety off, absolutely nothing in it. That worked perfectly, do it again. Perfect, I’m just going to remove the scope again now before we start because I want to clean the barrel. The reason I’m going to clean the barrel is it’s been in that bag, in the box, in the factory before it went in the box. It could be any manner of little bits of dirt, grime, the oil that they used at the factory with it. I’m just going to give it a wire brush through first. On the old cleaning rod. I’m going to change that and put a swab through it. Like I said it’s just to get rid of anything in there. Give it a little squirt of the old G Night Gun Treatment. It’s cleaning lubricant, if there’s any little bits in there it’ll just help him move them, it’s oiling, cleaning and just basic maintenance. I use that on all my guns Ithink it’s a wonderful product and you just push it through and as you can see on the end of my swab so all that was in the barrel. so now I’ll keep passing the patches through the barrel until they come out clean this is to get rid of all the residue that’s left down the barrel. Now, we’re ready to go for the breaking it in properly getting a few rounds
downrange and as we’re doing it we’re going to zero that scope on the top as well. Now, we’re going to use the wheeler laser bore sight. This gives me a rough zero on to the target, so I can put the laser on to the target and dial the crosshairs into the laser dot this helps me not waste ammo and gives me the rough zero onto the target. This is a Hawke Endurance at 30 WA SF 4×16 scope and now the clever people at Hawke put a ballistic reticle in here, which has been specifically designed for two to three caliber and .308, so when you’ve zeroed it a hundred yards the aim off points automatically fall in line for two hundred to the three hundred going right the way out to six hundred yards. So, what we’re going to do now we’re going to have fire a couple of shots and then I’m going to clean the barrel, as we did do before we started and then come back take another five shots, clean the barrel again and then another five shots and clean the barrel again and we’re going to do that until I fired twenty rounds. So, for the longevity of the barrel and the accuracy I find this works for me. The reason that we break the barrel it is because when it’s come out of the factory there is slight imperfections in the barrel where they’ve cut the thread in, which grips the bullet and spins it makes it come out of the barrel. These are a little bit pronounced in some areas or not so in other areas, it’s all to do with the tooling and the manufacture. The reason that we break the barrel in and clean it every time is to even the barrel out which will help it last longer. Okay, so that’s the first two shots done, I’m gonna remove the mod drop the mag take the bolt slide off, clean the barrel. Let’s see all the dirt that’s come out of that. Remove the swob, I’ll keep putting fresh patches through the barrel until there’s no further residue. Put the slide back in and because we’re taking five shots this time I’m going to load the mag. I’ll keep putting fresh patches through the barrel until there’s no further residue now we can refit the moderator. I will now take five more shots to further embed the bullets into the barrel. I’ll keep putting fresh patches through the barrel now until they come out there’s no oil or residue and then we can take another five shots. The barrel is now broken in, the shoot groups have significantly tightened up throughout the process. Okay, so here we are. There’s various groups on this board from different rifles, but this here is the last ten shots that I’ve taken. First of the tenth, if you like was there and there. The last five is that little block there, so basically it has just dropped everyone on top of one another and that way you can see by my size my finger it’s really impressive in anybody’s standard of shooting, but you can see the difference the way that it’s got tighter and tighter and tighter and this is where we started and we’ve been spraying it about and it’s just brought everything back in. So, I’m really really happy with that. Just to summarize, before you start make sure your barrels clean. Get rid of all that grit and packing oil. So, I start with two shots clean it thoroughly again and then banks of five til I’ve done twenty. I find twenty is quite sufficient, but make sure that you clean that barrel well at least every fifth shot. You can see the way their groups have come in and it’s dropped at a hundred yards one on top of another so I’m really, really happy with that.

12 thoughts on “How to Break-In a Rifle Barrel with Steve Wild

  1. Love this show! It’s given me the inspiration to create my own YouTube channel would love the support!

  2. Thanks Wildman and TeamWildTV for the tutorial. There are many minor variations on this, but the goal is the same; best accuracy and barrel life. Have a splendid day.

  3. Interesting, I spoke to the tech representatives at Browning/Winchester, Remington, Ruger, Savage, Bushmaster, Weatherby and Colt. They all told me that barrel break in is not necessary.

  4. Sry tu burst your bubble fanbois but breakig in a barrell is waste of time and only increaces chances of damaging it

    if you have some logic and brain you wont ask why but hey we are in US so maybe i am asking for too much

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