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Are there Benifits of a fluted barrel? Myth or tructh?

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by glockguy, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. glockguy

    glockguy Albany Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Just as the title says, is it worth the $200+ to buy one for an ar15? l don't know a lot about them, only what iv read.
     
  2. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    Yes, Truth. Weight reduction. That is the purpose of fluting.
     
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  3. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    What is the cost of a similar non-fluted? What is the weight savings?
     
  4. rick benjamin

    rick benjamin USA, Or, Damascus Secure the drama Silver Supporter 2016 Volunteer

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  5. Cougfan2

    Cougfan2 Hillsboro, OR Well-Known Member

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    Besides the weight reduction, fluted barrels also offer more surface area and aid in heat dissipation aiding in more barrel stability from shot to shot particularly in prolonged shooting sessions. It should be noted that even with fluted barrels, once the barrel gets really hot your groups will start to spread. When I am sighting in a rifle or testing new loads, I will fire not more than 5 shot groups before letting the barrel cool for 5-10 minutes.
     
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  6. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Weight reduction

    Aids heat dissipation

    Adds structural rigidity to the barrel

    Adds 10 to the cool factor
     
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  7. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    How?

    Weight reduction, I buy. Heat dissipation, maybe, but it will be marginal as the surface area increase can be pretty marginal depending on the amount and depth of the flute. Also, since it's the same material, it's going to take the same amount of time for the heat to move to the surface of the barrel, again, depth of flute may aid this marginally.

    I am an average rifle shooter on the best day, are flutes going to turn me into an above average shooter? No, are they going to make my rifle lighter and easier to carry in the field? Yes, but before I start taking chucks out of my barrel to lose gun weight, I should work first on myself to lose "self weight." :D
     
  8. DoubleTapDrew

    DoubleTapDrew Oregon Well-Known Member

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    It ads to the cost of the barrel. IMO not worth the $200. Not $200 worth of weight savings or heat dissipation.
    It's not like AR-15 barrels are heavy to begin with and you are probably saving less than the weight of a cheapo plastic vertical foregrip or magpul afg. I have one on a bull barrel 10/22 but it was about $15 more than a non-fluted one and looks kinda cool to me.
     
  9. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Anytime you change the radius of a bend in the same piece of material it makes it harder to bend the material in that the material has to bend at many different rates all at the same time. Basic engineering.

    case in point an I beam compared to a simple rod of the same mass.
     
  10. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    Alright make sense. I am not a engineer, my science is all on the organics side.
     
  11. Velzey

    Velzey Estacada, Oregon Gunsmith Gunsmith Bronze Vendor Bronze Supporter

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    I have found that my fluted barrel comes in handy. Makes for nice finger grooves when I use my rifle as a walking stick.

    Only takes 20 min to jog down a 5000' canyon chasing elk, and three hours to hike back out...
     
  12. AMProducts

    AMProducts Maple Valley, WA Jerk, Ammo Manufacturer Silver Supporter

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    I think this is very much a personal question, for AR's I typically stay with the M4 profile for my shorties, and the HBAR profile for longer barrels.

    When it comes to varmint rifles, a fluted barrel (especially one with bigger flutes) really does help with heat dissipation and weight savings. How much is that worth? probably not $200. OTOH, if I was getting a custom barrel cut, $200 should get the whole barrel profiled and cut, even if I wanted fluting.
     
  13. orygun

    orygun West Linn Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I see the weight reduction issue a bit differently. "Usually" the fluting is done on a larger than standard diameter barrel and can reduce the weight to a point that's similar to the smaller diameter barrel.
    That allows some of the other factors to come into play.
    Generalizations...
    Larger diameter = stiffer, for the same length. With flutes makes barrel even more rigid.
    Larger diameter = more shots fired before barrel heats up.
    Larger diameter with flutes = more surface area to help cool down faster. Although this may be a wash, because a thinner barrel will cool faster than a thick barrel because of less material.
    On something like an AR-15 it may be more useful than on a bolt action rifle.

    Mostly I think people want it because they like the looks. $200 extra? Probably not on my rifle.
     
  14. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    I personally do think it's worth the extra 200. If I can have a rifle with the performance of a bull barrel and the weight of a m4 barrel (or close), I'm good with it. I mean really...(?).. 200 bucks, Who doesn't piss that away on other stuff on the regular.

    I do like the high end stuff as well as a do the old tried and true side of hunting and guns. I am thinking about having a Proof Research carbon barrel put on a rifle just for the heck of it.
     
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  15. cookie

    cookie THE SOCIALIST STATE OF KALI - FORNIA Well-Known Member

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    Even if there were no benefits fluted barrels look cool. It is like buying pretty wheels for you vehicle .
     
  16. Sstrand

    Sstrand La Grande OR Well-Known Member

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    Or a trophy wife . . .

    Sheldon
     
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  17. glockguy

    glockguy Albany Oregon Well-Known Member

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  18. Gaucho Gringo

    Gaucho Gringo Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    Swamped barrels also reduce weight and aid in balance. Been around for the last 250 years so I guess it is a time tested technique.
     
  19. mattdomes

    mattdomes Newberg Active Member

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