Rimfire accuracy: long barrel vs shorter barrel | Carolina Shooters Club

Rimfire accuracy: long barrel vs shorter barrel

Discussion in 'Rimfire Forum' started by Robin Fowler, Apr 7, 2021.

  1. Robin Fowler

    Robin Fowler Registered Member

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    So I had a conversation with a guy at the gun shop about rimfire rifles. He said the longer 24” barrel is/can be less accurate than a 20” barrel (I was talking about CZ-USA models). His reason is that a .22LR powder is already burned and the extra barrel length is unnecessary in a .22. Also, a longer barrel can affect accuracy if you wander off the target just bf your shot. That is, the longer barrel accentuates the “wander” by the extra length. And the added length adds to friction on the bullet. Of course, we are talking about four inches; is this really a “thing?” Discuss.
     
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  2. rhodney

    rhodney Registered Member

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    Actually yes a longer barrel doesn't mean more accuracy it really depends on caliber twist rate harmonics but I'm sure there is a formula
     
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  3. Bailey Boat

    Bailey Boat Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    20" seems to be the ideal, 24" begs to be cut.....
     
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  4. Robin Fowler

    Robin Fowler Registered Member

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    ok, thanks guys!
     
  5. 42dcnf

    42dcnf Registered Member

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    Theoretically, a shorter barrel will be stiffer, resulting in better accuracy.

    But there are no guarantees; each rifle has its own behavior.
     
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  6. 5.6x15R

    5.6x15R Registered Member

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  7. joelpend

    joelpend Registered Member

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    I do not agree. Every rifle is different but longer rimfire barrels are NOT inherently less accurate. The lower pressure as the bullet exists the muzzle can be a good thing. I tell folks if their rimfire is shooting really good to never shorten the barrel because you do not know what that might do to accuracy. Harmonics are alway effected when you change the length and weight of a barrel.
     
  8. DaBoogsterNC

    DaBoogsterNC Registered Member

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    I agree with Joel, a good long barrel can be as accurate or better or worse than a short barrel. Many say it is critical the barrel bore is tighter at the muzzle for best accuracy.
    Many things make for a good 22 rimfire barrel. In my humble opinion, barrel length (within reason) is not one of them.
     
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  9. Robin Fowler

    Robin Fowler Registered Member

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    ah! the plot thickens!
    maybe i will go to the horse’s mouth and ask CZ. or Anschutz.
     
  10. SkydivnShooter

    SkydivnShooter Staff Member Staff Member Lifetime Member Club Subscribed

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    Yes please. And tell us what they say.
     
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  11. Robin Fowler

    Robin Fowler Registered Member

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    def will. Monday!
     
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  12. Robin Fowler

    Robin Fowler Registered Member

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    I spoke with both CZ and Anschutz.
    CZ said “yes, there is a lot of opinions about barrel length.” But not much else.
    Anschutz spox, Danny, had a lot to say! Basically, under 100 yds, not much diff between a 20” and 24-27” barrel. At 200 yds, longer barrel is def more accurate.
    He said in Europe, iron sights in competition is typical, and longer barrel/longer sight alignment improves accuracy.
    But: depends if you are bench rest or offhand. Then he said it is more about what feels more “balanced” for a shooter, esp shooting offhand. A smaller person may find a shorter barrel less tiring to hold, for example.
    As far as “burn rate” for .22lr, he said they found 18” barrel to be optimal, but at 16” powder is completely burned.
    I said I plan to shoot “competitively” against myself with a scope at 100 yds. He recommended, for one of their rifles, a 21.5” barrel.
    THEN there is the ammunition! But that is another topic, i think.
    -Robin
     
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  13. odessastraight

    odessastraight Lifetime Member Lifetime Member Club Subscribed

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    If you were going to use iron sights then a longer sight radius is more precise than a shorter sight radius. You will be shooting with optics so get a barrel length that feels right to you. A lot of people shooting standing(offhand) with iron sights like a bit more weight out front so a bit longer barrel.
     

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