What is used in a gun barrel

Gun barrel steel

Hello friends,

I got the two pictures in the appendix from Mr. Bilgeri, Development Manager, Steyr-Mannlicher. Most “gun experts” don't know what these longitudinal grooves are for. Here it is clearly shown what they are bad for! If these pictures are from a disaster analysis, they could be good pictures! If these are from a reloader from the shooting range, the pictures are bad. It's good if you don't stand by it. We should keep checking the strength values ​​across the fiber. For hammered barrels AFTER hammering. If the degree of deformation is high, the best steels can be kneaded until they are “brittle”.

Regards, H. P. Sigg, Tuesday, March 1st, 2005 10:07 am

Hmm, AWO, "stainless steel" is about as meaningful as "plastic". There are certainly rust-resistant materials that can keep up with a 42CrMo4 in terms of strength and abrasion resistance, for example, but they cost ... and who processes them into barrels? There is no stainless steel. Stain “less” barrels do not optically suffer from sandblasting to enlarge the surface (= improved heat dissipation), with burnished barrels someone has to be a pragmatist (it's me). Black runs give off heat faster than light ones with the same surface, heat is transferred better (if someone is not shooting in the sauna, the outside temperature of the run is times higher than the ambient temperature, even in the Sahara) : Large series of shots without a break, lifespan? Which materials are available?

Just for orientation: 1 kg of 42CrMo4 standard-coated currently cost me 1.50 € (one point five), which consists of a lot of "normal" and flawless runs. Usable “stainless” steels with not quite the same hardenability (wear resistance and toughness) cost ~ 60% more. The rest of the running price is processing. In this price range, stainless barrels are subject to somewhat greater wear. Whether or not you max it out depends on your plans.

Confused enough?

Greeting + sniper +

Lothar Walther uses 34CrNiMo6 normal steel, which is annealed in a stress-relieved manner in the brazing temperature range for silver solder. Its expansion coefficient is comparable to that of the 42CrMo4. Therefore the barrels can be soldered without further ado.

Heym uses the materials 51CrV4 and X39CrMo17 for his barrels.

Barrel puller

Mr. Klaus Weißenberger, Wutöschingen, call 07746.5769

Mr. Eichelberger, Switzerland, call +41.629.652.2208, fax 3061

Asepaja Erkki Mäkinen
Vammala, Stormi
Post address: 38220
Tel + 358-3-5151025


Erkki Mäkinen is able to make a barrel with a 185 mm twist, but not sharper than that. And he is not able to make the twist progressive, at least with current machines.

with regards, Tom

Hello Mr. Möller,

my hair stands on end when I read everything about and around weapons on your mail romping ground! Already someone (+ sniper +) writes about drive materials and shows that he doesn't know anything! This is someone who also thinks that barrels have to be cooled for a single shot. This + sniper + also thinks that a sand-blasted surface is larger, so cooler is better. Many also believe that barrels are fluted to increase the surface area for better cooling. All mistake!

1. First to the Sandblasting: There are technical universities in Switzerland that have researched sandblasting as surface processing and, in a broader sense, as machining. It was found that compression / solidification and thus surface tension is also generated, similar to machining with a blunt cutting tool. That is undesirable at gun barrels and one certainly cannot want this too! If you sandblast a straight wave on one side over its entire length, you will see from the curvature how great the influence of surface tension can be.

2. To Run cool: In a world-famous arms factory, assault rifles were fired continuously and the conditions for barrel life were exceeded by far. 5 magazines of 20 rounds (100 rounds) were fired at a rate of ~ 2 to 3 rounds per second. After 100 rounds, the barrel was allowed to cool. This game was repeated 100 times and the run wasn't over! (10,000 shots). This assault rifle was broken by riflemen in a single shot with 3,000 to 4,000 rounds! Why? Because the barrel could cool down too much in a single shot! The temperature shock on the drive material is greater, the colder the drive material is! Single-shot gun barrels should therefore be thermally insulated! Not the other way around! However, if a barrel in continuous fire on the inner surface is shot above the heat resistance limit, the service life decreases rapidly! When loaded in this way, a run can end after 150 to 200 shots. (Depending on the type of cartridge, cadence, number of shots).

At Oerlikon-Bührle in Zurich, the barrel wear and tear mechanics in barrel weapons were researched in particular. (Dr. Beisken). A weapon barrel in cal. 35 mm (KDA, Gepard) was created, in which several material samples from the bullet bearing to the gas nozzle could be inserted in a twisted position. These material samples were photographed in the scanning electron microscope after each shot. It was found that

  1. The gun barrel receives its crack structure with the first shot and maintains this until the end of its service life.

  2. The bullet friction plays a subordinate role, unless the fields have transverse grooves, especially in the storey bearing, transition cone area, generated by reamers (transverse processing grooves). In the case of polished or hammered bullet bearings, the frictional heat then (there) no longer has any influence on the service life.

  3. The choice of material for the pipe wear in the tensile field area (not the pipe strength) plays a subordinate role. The plaster wear is not meant here.

  4. Various types of nitriding processes (e.g. teniferating, gas nitriding, nitrocarborating) play a greater role in pipe wear than e.g. B. the material alloy.

  5. The pipe wear is a thermal issue.

At SIG Neuhausen Switzerland, the metallurgist, Klaus Rothleb, found nothing different with regard to barrel wear on handguns. In the handguns, precision weapon barrel area, however, weapon barrel materials are of greater importance with regard to projectile casing deposits, which are precision-reducing. Chrome, it is written, cannot be wetted! Benchresters have found this too! If a rusting barrel made of quenched and tempered steel were to shoot more accurately than a stainless steel barrel (which is also known as stainless steel), then benchresters would only shoot with rusting barrels! Benchresters, however, shoot barrels with the maximum chromium contentbecause chrome cannot be wetted, not even with tombac! Here the rabbit is in the pepper! Not with rusting or non-rusting pipe material or pipe wear.

Dear Mr. Möller,

You should express yourself about these difficulties, not ask others to do so and then make your own mind up about them! Your long range copper alloy bullet and WHAT you post about it shows you believe more than you know! My principle is: Belief means: Not knowing! Nevertheless: keep being very curious and ask people who believe less and know more. These still exist and they are still alive! But this knowledge is declined by our state, our legislation. You could also say why the Americans want to replace the .223 "Rem. Cartridge with a 6.9 mm cartridge! I am very curious about your opinion! Please answer me.

Sincerely, H. P. Sigg, March 1, 2005

Hello Mr. Möller,

I am a sergeant in my 6th year. During my search on the internet I came across your site, which, by the way, deserves great praise. I'm supposed to hold a gun cleaning class in my unit. I have already made the didactic consideration, but I am missing some pictures for a remarkable methodical presentation. I'm looking for pictures of pipe bulges or burst pipes. Maybe you could give me a link or help out with your own picture inventory. I thank you in advance and would be happy to hear from you.

With best regards, Schmidt, Oberfeldwebel, October 30, 2005 11:28 am

Day Mr. Schmidt,

you are welcome to use the pictures. Just teach your people how to clean well.

Waidmannsheil, Lutz Möller

Krupp three-ring steel

Hello Mr. Möller,

At Suhler Waffen, the term Krupp "three-ring steel" is always used. There is also the logo with the three rings that is or has been stamped into the barrels. Connoisseurs like that shotguns, for example, have this designation with the three rings. According to information, this should be good steel from the west of Krupp. In between (in the GDR period) Suhl is said to have used bad steels and the reputation of the Suhl armory has apparently suffered as a result.

My question to you now is: I saw a Schön cross-shotgun from Simson with the inscription “Special Rifle Barrel” and a logo with four rings on sale (egun). What does this logo mean? (Just like the symbol with the 5 Olympic rings, only with four rings). Is this a brand fraud or does it have a serious meaning? I have now come to you with this question, a gunsmith and also an employee at Merkel were not really able to help me. You would help me a lot with a quick answer, as the relevant auction will expire soon. I would appreciate an answer very much.
PS .: Your accumulation of knowledge about weapons and ammunition has already become a standard work for me - if there are any questions, I'll take a quick look. I congratulate you on this and wish you a lot of energy and time to keep this work alive.

MfG, Manfred S. / Carinthia / Austria, Wednesday, February 22, 2006 10:53

Day Mr. S.,

An elderly gunsmith from an old company who knows his way around shotguns and break-open rifles can probably tell you that best. The best thing to do is ask Mr Arendt! He knows!

Waidmanns Heil to Carinthia, Lutz Möller

Hello Mr. Möller,

but that was quick!

I've already had a long, very instructive phone call with Mr. Arendt. The rings provide information about the steel quality. With the one offered, I will probably grab it quickly.

Thank you for your quick help!

Weidmannsheil and good sight for the coming hunting year. Manfred S., Wednesday, February 22, 2006 12:23 p.m.

Free cutting steel

Hello, Lutz

(Information for bars with a diameter of less than 10 mm)

1.0710 410 - 600 N / mm² tensile strength
1.0715 380 - 570 N / mm² tensile strength
1.0736 390 - 590 N / mm² tensile strength

All three steels belong to the group of free-cutting steels and are therefore easy to machine, with short-breaking chips (S content). The steel with the lowest tensile strength from the group is 1.0721, 1.0722 360 - 530 N / mm²

Alternatively, the steels in the “case-hardening steels” group have low tensile strengths, but in the soft state they can tend to smear and long chip formation during machining. Example: 1.0301 C10 strength in the soft state around 300 N / mm²

Less additives = less tensile strength? As a first approximation: yes and no. Every alloy element works and interacts differently with the other alloy elements - unfortunately, or thank God, otherwise nobody would need me ...

By the way: Norddeutsche Affinerie produces copper wire rod in dimensions from 8 to 15 mm, also alloyed. That could be a form of delivery for you - little chip work. Have a look at www.na-ag.com You are not really interested in the surface because it is produced by machining. Then it can also be a reduced-price scrap coil.

Kind regards, André, May 5, 2006

Something else

Read run life!

It doesn't always have to be steel, says the NDIA, look here!

Lutz Möller August 22, 2007,

Sauer 202 channel + HDP brake

Hello Mr. Möller,

Thank you for your call yesterday. The muzzle actually seems to offer enough space for the brake

Unfortunately, I cannot measure at the moment because the bushing for ZF assembly is still at the BüMa. A problem with the sight shifting due to the channel on top of the barrel?

Next Friday I will now shoot the rifle with the BüMa and feel how hard it hits. By the way, I will shoot you in with your Lutz Möller bullet ;-) Anything other than a Cu bullet is out of the question for me. One more question about the brake: If you deliver it, is there a cover like the one in the picture from your side?

Kind regards, Martin Wyler, September 18, 2007 9:40 am

Day mr wyler,

According to the picture, the fluted barrel at the muzzle seems 12 mm long to offer space for the recoil brake fine thread M 15x1.

I would not reset the grain caliper, but mill it out at the bottom, similar to the following picture with a somewhat older, different brake:

Brake under the grain caliper

If you give the connection dimensions and the picture to your BüMa, it will cope with it. No, there is no cap. Every run is different. I recommend adding the brake and leaving it there. Should you nevertheless want a cap, your BüMa will be able to make a suitable one for your barrel.

Waidmannsheil in Switzerland, Lutz Möller

Run cooler

Running cold accelerator - or the suction blower in miniature

Good evening Mr. Möller!

As so often before, clearly noticeable by the roll of my fiancé's eyes, I spent a lot of time with your pages again today. In particular for the reason: I recently had a reloader around here in 20 RWS cases put 4 loads for my 98he in 6.5x57 plug. I will check this at the booth on Saturday morning. The load master warned me several times to take an enormous amount of time to fire these 20 cartridges. I would like to shorten this time and came across the suction blower on your network place, which seemed to me to be suitable for cooling the barrel, or rather the whole thing itself, quickly.

Huge size, I thought, and without further ado, without paper and without a plan, made a piece of polyacetal (POM) and a slaughtered CPU cooler of the 486he-Time to put a barrel cooler on my milling machine (Hermle - Swabian thing, very precisely). Plug-in power supply on: it sucks the air through from bottom to top when the shutter is open and the canister is turned off. Attached picture (which you can of course insert into your pages if necessary!)

Favorite running cooler

Now I don't know whether it affects you, or whether you have already made experiments in this regard, but measuring the running cooling speed with and without a fan would be advisable. In any case, I will take a commercially available outdoor thermometer for the automotive sector, break open the outside sensor, and attach the temperature sensor to itself with a lump of hot glue near the chamber, shoot and measure. Let's see what can be measured there.

If necessary, I can provide you with reports or a temperature-time curve.


Hunters shoot cold.

Yes please and a network shop so that the things can then be bought, because the thing is missing, I mean!

I love the inventiveness and creativity of my readers!

Many greetings from the Bavarian Forest! H. Liebl, Wednesday, October 31, 2007 9:30 p.m.

Blow vacuum cleaner or what?

Hello Lutz,

i would be very surprised if this run cooler would work. I had tried the same way, but this small fan does not generate any suction power for the relatively small barrel diameter! A vacuum cleaner fan z. E.g. is effective, with this small fan I had no change in the flame of a lighter on the back of the lock! Useless, tested three different fans! Such a small fan only whirls around in front of the barrel without creating suction! Vacuum cleaner or Extractor hood from the kitchen is good for something, even for several weapons! I'm impatient myself and had to think of something not to wait so long ... J

Greetings Ronny, Wednesday, October 31, 2007 10:36 p.m.

Moin Lutz,

in advance: Have not yet found the time to push our cause forward. This one with the running cooling fan is not suitable in this form, I can simply explain why. The barrel cooling is important for combined weapons with permanently soldered barrels, i.e. DB, BBF, Drilling. Here (if it is to be cooled quickly and evenly) the entire barrel bundle inside and outside must be circulated with air, everything else is banana. Isn't it also logical! Everything has to be the same temperature. That's what happens when you don't understand the purpose. Even a single run can be cooled better and faster in this way. I'm waiting for your answer!

MfG Walter, Thursday, November 1st 2007 13:26 (LM: The inventor of the first suction blower))

Small vacuum cleaner

Hello Lutz,

I read the report Laufkühler read and can also confirm that these little things can't really suck. They are not made for that either. Since I occasionally fire more than two or three shots with the same device in a row, I discovered the ice spray for my purposes, i.e. quick cooling. It works reliably and quickly. You should follow the instructions for use "For external use only"! Have fun with it.

WaiHei and Gut Schuß, D. (please without name), Tuesday, November 6, 2007 9:13 am

stainless steel

Hello Mr. Möller,

What are the advantages and disadvantages of stainless steel rifle and pistol barrels compared to conventional ones?

And which stainless steels and, above all, which rifles with stainless steel barrels are particularly recommended for hunting? Are there also recommended long-range guns made of stainless steel for hunting?

Sincerely, Dr. A. Giessmann, Monday, November 12, 2007 9:17 pm

Day Mr. Giessmann,

Stainless steel is rust resistant, stores less heat, conducts heat less well, is much more difficult to work with and is more noticeable.

The rust inertia can also be produced differently today.

With best regards, Lutz Möller

Thermal behavior

Hello Mr. Möller,

a question: I read that rifle barrels made of stainless steel showed a greater spread (would hit less accurately) when heated after several shots than barrels made of conventional steel, which has to be burnished for rust protection. It is said that stainless steel expands significantly more than rusting steel when heated.

LM: Yeah.

Is that true and how strong is the effect?

LM: I can't get exact numbers out of my head. The heat storage capacity of stainless chrome or chrome-nickel steels is clear lower than the rusting carbon steels. The expansion per heat also plays a role. But we hunters only shoot game once from the cold barrel. So why do you want to know?

With best regards, Stefan Meier, Saturday, February 2nd, 2008 10:18 pm

Mr. Möller,

can it be that a stainless barrel heats up much faster than a burnished one?

Kind regards, Saskia W., Saturday, May 17th, 2008 6:33 pm

Day Mrs. W.

Many a stainless barrel is made of 1.4021 martensitic chrome steel, normally 880 N / mm², can be tempered to 1,150 - 1,200 N / mm², low temperature resistance must be ensured that it does not become brittle. Its heat storage capacity is significantly lower than that of carbon steels. So it heats up faster. In addition, bare barrels do not radiate as much heat as black ones. So they get hotter. So your observation is correct.

Waidmannsheil, Lutz Möller

Rifle barrels barrels manufactures (hammers and pulls)

Ferlacher Waffen Präzisionstechnik Produktions GmbH
Maschinenhausgasse 5
A-9170 Ferlach
Tel. +43 (4227) 2251
Fax +43 (4227) 3714


Mr. Möller,

Thank you again very much for your effort. I've just written to Mr Sprack. If he can do something with my run, I'll be happy to send it to him, carriage paid. I don't like the imperial caliber for hunting and I have understanding and compassion for people who have got into personal distress due to the forces of nature. That is the benefit of the commonality, thanks for your part!

To the shame of Austria, I have to admit that it took Ferlach a year (!) To deliver a rusty 6.5x68 barrel, allegedly in selected match quality. After I raved a bit, the 6.5x68 and the 8x68 came with nice shot pictures. My valued gunsmith is now working on the DWM 1908 systems. I already have an excellent 9.3x62 Mauser from him, which I will switch to the Lutz Möller bullet after using up the remaining 11 Impala bullets. I feel obliged to report, I will write as soon as the first test with the Lutz Möller bullet has run.

LM: Thank you!

The first thing to do is the 6.5x68. I'm looking forward to it! I will document the hits with the few Impala bullets that I still have as well as I can.

I mainly hunt sows, roe deer and fallow deer. Should you ever be in the Vienna area, I would like to invite you to come along. My 3 fellow hunters all shoot their bullets (mostly in .30-06, too bad) and would appreciate your visit.

For the search I use a Glock 20 in a 10 mm car. Do you have a charging recommendation for this?

LM: No.

Or should I swap one of my 9mm Luger for a .357 Sig?

LM: That would be better with 10.2 g TMF!

I am team European champion in Bigbore silhouette shooting with two shooting friends, up to 500 meters standing free with the 6.5x55 Swedish. Now we shoot the Lapua B 343 in front of ~ 46 grs. N 160. Would switching to the Lutz Möller floor make sense? Does the light projectile throw the steel ram with a weight of 25 kg at this range? Every Ram counts, so I can imagine myself affording the Lutz Möller bullet.

LM: No, in the case of an inelastic collision, the momentum m * v counts. you have already been given the right advice.

Lots of questions, I know ... I don't expect a detailed answer, but I would appreciate it.

Greetings from Austria, Erhages, Monday, February 4, 2008 11:50 pm

PS: The joy of reading your page comes not least from your language. It's nice if there is still German to read!


Dear Mr. Möller,

The basic components of the material LW19 are 1.6582, which, however, is specially adapted for us in terms of the range of alloys and the manufacturing process. It can be browned without any problems.

With best regards, LOTHAR WALTHER, Feinwerkzeugbau GmbH

Dr. Frank Walther, Thursday, July 10, 2008 7:50 am


Hello Mr. Möller,

I still have a technical question regarding barrel cleaning: You recommend shots from a used barrel (Schmauch) and cleaning after the appropriate number of shots, depending on the caliber.

LM: Yes!

What about the corrosion of the barrel steel?

LM: With dry storage you have nothing to worry about.

In general, one reads about cleaning after each shot.

LM: Generally one is wrong.

I am concerned that my barrel will rust once a year if cleaned.

LM: It's just a question of humidity. You can clean more often, but after each cleaning you put an “oil shot” in the sand!
Sincerely, H.-D. Wowries, Wednesday June 8, 2011 12:05 pm

Rust and oil shot

Read rust beforehand!

Hello Lutz,

So for me, 1 shot of oil is not enough, even if I dry it out a few times beforehand. Only the 4th shot sits where it belongs, all other 4 cm deep and 3 cm to the right. When I shoot the 4th with a cold gun, it is 4 cm high and at 12 o'clock as it should be.

LG Marcus Höger, Friday, June 10, 2011 3:28 pm


This is also observed by others who shoot very well, at least 100 m on the thumbnail, 200 m on the matchbox and 300 m on the beer mat. See shooting in Africa 2011 and Baboon 2011. In normal hunting, an oil shot is generally sufficient after cleaning to reduce the point of impact caused by cleaning to such an extent that a clean shot can be fired again. In the case of special requirements for a very good meeting, this must be precisely determined in detail. Depending on the barrel of the rifle, several shots may be necessary after cleaning in order to restore a stable shot-to-shot balance that alone guarantees accurate hits.

My MJG (brass) helps to maintain the accuracy of the hit for a long time compared to the Lutz Möller KJG (copper), because brass smears less on steel than copper, so it has to be decoppered less often.

Greetings Lutz

to rust and oil shots

Moin Mr. Möller,

A fellow hunter's 98-nozzle cal. .308, for whom I prescribed KJG last year, also only hit the 5th shot again after the thorough cleaning, as it should. After this experience I will never be satisfied with just one "oil shot" and then take the weapon back to the station. After cleaning my weapons on the firing range must first show that the hit position is correct again. However, so far with my own weapons (7x64; 8x75RS, .222rem; 30-06; all with KJG) it was always the case that the 3rd shot was back in the usual place at the latest.

Regards, H. Dittmer, Saturday, June 11, 2011 4:42 pm