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Jim_B
Reply with quote  #1 
I've got a Remington 700 in .223 Remington that's completely "stock" (26" heavy barrel). I'll start off with a clean barrel and after firing about 50-60 rounds of factory ammo (Hornady, Remington or Winchester) I'm getting streaks of copper fouling. I don't have a borescope, but I can see it's at least in the inch or so before the muzzle. I'd guess it's in the rest of the barrel, as well.

Despite the fouling, it shoots about as well as I'd expect from factory equipment - about .75 MOA.

I'm using Sweet's and my Outer's Foul-Out (electronic bore cleaner) to remove the copper.

Any idea why this is happening and what to do about it? I'm pretty sure it isn't normal...
gunamonth
Reply with quote  #2 
I'm not sure you should assume that the entire bore is fouled. If you're lucky it's mostly near the muzzle.

There are at least two possible reasons, and two of them are actually good things.

The bullet is traveling at it's highest velocity at the muzzle. If you're going to get copper laid on the lands, this is where it really should happen. Different than copper at the throat which is more likely from the surface being rough or the plasma effect (temperature and pressure).

The other "good" reason is your barrel may be a little smaller in diameter at the muzzle. This is , again, a good thing. If the tightest diameter was in the middle or breech end, it's pretty much impossible for the rifle to shoot well. All of my "good" rifles foul near the muzzle.

Sweet's works but it's really harsh. There are others (WipeOut, Butches, etc) that will get the job done but are less hazardous to the health of your barrel. I'm not a fan of Foul-Out but that's just me.

You didn't mention how many rounds you have through the barrel. If it's pretty new it's going to foul for a while then should get better. You should be able to go significantly more than 50-60 rounds with a .223 before fouling is a problem. A little J-B bore paste as part of your cleaning process a time or two will help the "lapping with factory ammo" process along.

If you have a buddy with a Hawkeye or belong to a club that has one it's worth taking a look. Most Remington barrels I've looked at have a lot of axial machine marks through the length of the barrel plus "chatter" marks in the grooves. A couple of newer ones, in the last year or so, were much better. Not like a hand lapped custom job, but really not bad. The new ones didn't shoot any better than the old ones but they didn't foul nearly as quickly.

If you get tempted to "fire lap" the barrel my experience has been that the barrels comes out a lot smoother. They have also have had the lands moved forward about 0.100" or more.
Jim_B
Reply with quote  #3 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gunamonth
I'm not sure you should assume that the entire bore is fouled.

Good point. If I push a brush through the bore, I can feel more resistance as it nears the muzzle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gunamonth
The bullet is traveling at it's highest velocity at the muzzle. If you're going to get copper laid on the lands, this is where it really should happen.

Maybe the 26" barrel contributes to this? (More velocity than a shorter barrel).

Quote:
Originally Posted by gunamonth
You didn't mention how many rounds you have through the barrel. If it's pretty new it's going to foul for a while then should get better. You should be able to go significantly more than 50-60 rounds with a .223 before fouling is a problem.

Not quite sure on the round count; I bought the gun used (but in excellent condition). I wouldn't say the fouling is a problem (the gun shoots well), but I haven't really seen it before in any of my other guns.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gunamonth
A little J-B bore paste as part of your cleaning process a time or two will help the "lapping with factory ammo" process along.

I'll give it a try!


Quote:
Originally Posted by gunamonth
Most Remington barrels I've looked at have a lot of axial machine marks through the length of the barrel plus "chatter" marks in the grooves. A couple of newer ones, in the last year or so, were much better. Not like a hand lapped custom job, but really not bad. The new ones didn't shoot any better than the old ones but they didn't foul nearly as quickly.

I'd say the gun's at least a few years old and, like most factory barrels, the machining leaves a bit to be desired.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gunamonth
If you get tempted to "fire lap" the barrel my experience has been that the barrels comes out a lot smoother. They have also have had the lands moved forward about 0.100" or more.

I might look into this.

Thanks for the reply!
M700
Reply with quote  #4 
Jim B - I've had factory barrels that never did quit fouling. Ever. I'd clean 'em and get 'em all squared away - then the next time I shot them, the copper fouling was back. Rough factory bores I'd guess. Just something that comes with a factory barrel.

A couple of those barrels shot really well fouled like that though.

FWIW, Guy
walkertexasranger
Reply with quote  #5 
I had a factory Rem 700 LTR in .223 (20" barrel not a 26") that was having a copper issue also. I tried the final finish, just ten shots of the finest grain, and the copper fouling almost quit.

Rifle shot about the same as yours. Didn't shoot better afterwards, but sure could go further in between, and was easier to clean as well.

I would recommend the FF in a fouling/poor shooting factory barrel as you really have nothing to lose. However, I would NEVER recommend the stuff in a hand-lapped barrel. No way...

Just my $.02

Mark
jdavis62
Reply with quote  #6 
l had the same thing,l meet a retired engineer from Remington
and he told me that all hammer forged barrels should have three
inchs removed from each end,it is removed by the chamber on one
end but you should cut the front three inchs also.l done this
and my two 700-223's now shoot 3/4 inch at 200yds.lt works give
it a try you will love it.
Jon D.
ReedG
Reply with quote  #7 
If you want to see what the inside of a new Remington factory barrel looks like, go to this site:

Lilja Barrels

I personally have never seen a factory barrel that did not copper foul. After 200 or so rounds they will smooth out some, but unless you're into Coopers or Sakos you are left with some pretty undesirable factory barrels. Even the Savages which seem to shoot real well have fouling problems. Final Finish seems to help, though I've never used it.

As far as what the engineer said about cutting off the end of hammer-forged barrels, that might be correct, but he sure was referring to a Remington barrel because they are not hammer forged. That would cost too much money but would make a much smoother bore.

Some expensive custom barrels also copper foul. I know several guys with Krieger and Lilja barrels and some never foul and others foul badly, using the same loads and cleaning regimen.

I leave Sweet's 7.62 in my bores overnight all the time. All my barrels, custom and factory, are stainless and I have not had problems. It must be followed by a thorough cleaning to make sure it is neutralized and then a light oiling. Butch's is the best all-around cleaner I've used and can be left in the bore for days. JB's seems to me to work better on hard carbon fouling than on copper but it is excellent.

Clean often. Use a good bronze brush. Enjoy your rifle.
jdavis62
Reply with quote  #8 
Reed Thats funny Remington say;s they are Hammer Forged.
so tell me what you know l don't.Thank you..
Jon D.
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