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Review Of: Quicker Barrel Cooler Downer Faster Thingy...
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 Posted: Sun Nov 21st, 2010 01:01 AM
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Guncrank
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I dislike waiting the 20 or so minutes for the barrel of the firearm to cool after firing each test group of my latest hand-loads. For a rifle that use to mean nearly an hour and a half simply to touch off 20 rounds in 5 batches of 4! OK, so the alternative is to take several guns to the range so that one could maximize the shooting time and minimize the time spent watching the grass grow, smoking cigarettes or thinking about how nice a good Bourbon would taste just about now. All well and good, however, the amount of eye fatigue and shootist fatigue went up commensurate with the numbers of rounds put down range. Worse yet was that nagging question of whether those last couple of test groups were a poor combination of components for the gun in use or was I the cause of that pattern all over the target?

So, here's a fix for gently returning a hot barrel to ambient temperature in short order... This is the 4 "D-Cell" alkaline battery operated air mattress pump made by Coleman. Works quite well and will cool a barrel down in a well under half the time of just letting it sit in the shade.

Available at your favorite Wally-World for $15 in the camping section next to the air-mattress. The yellow hose taped to the business end of the blower is a piece of 1/2" rubber air hose about 2 feet long. Fits snugly in a guns action with just a little twist and or squeeze, on every bolt action I've tried and some of the semi-autos as well. Works like a champ in my AR-15 heavy barreled varmint gun.
   

Should you care to have something with a little more horsepower there's this version fired by a 12 volt battery. It easily produces twice the volume of air of the above 6 volt pump. The down side is you have to provide your own 12 volt battery and drag it to and from the range. This may be a little less of a problem for those that can have their vehicle parked near by as the it comes with a 10 foot long cord.

 For those that are willing to put up with the extra hassle the item below is the quicker way to go! Also Wally-World, budget priced at $15 as well.

 



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 Posted: Sun Nov 21st, 2010 12:28 PM
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ghrit
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I think I might be inclined to stuff the muzzle into the tube rather than fuss with poking the tube into the receiver and hoping it fits like a ______ in a ______.



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 Posted: Sun Nov 21st, 2010 01:15 PM
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woodsman777
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Charley posted this a little while back ,thats two of you with the same good Idea ,I like it :thumbs:

http://www.handloadersbench.com/forum99/13749.html



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 Posted: Sun Nov 21st, 2010 09:20 PM
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Guncrank
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ghrit,

I can't see why cooling from the muzzle wouldn't work well enough pushing the air against the grain, so to speak.

 
 woodsman777,

Obviously just more proof positive that great minds think alike! :rolleyes:



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 Posted: Sun Nov 21st, 2010 09:59 PM
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Charley
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Didn't say I came up with it, said I stole/borrowed it from the old shooters.com site. Guncrank, it works really well, doesn't it!



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 Posted: Sun Nov 21st, 2010 11:25 PM
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ghrit
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GC, not only drawkcab flow, but there would be minor cooling of the receiver as well. And less tubing to hide in the range box.



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 Posted: Mon Nov 22nd, 2010 04:42 PM
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Offfhand
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  Needless to say, the cooler the air, the faster the cooling action.  Attached is a photo of an ingenious barrel cooling system called Winter Breeze."  The tanks hold compressed CO2, and tube attachment fits into barrel chamber with sealing rings.  Open the tank valve for a few seconds and a sizzling barrel is cool again. I bough this several years ago and may no longer be available, but would be easy to rig something similar at low cost.  The smaller tank is the handy "bench" model and the larger tank in background is good for several days of intense prairie dog shooting.  Refillable at gas supply places.  When I first used it I was concerned about the rapid barrel cooling possibly causing accuracy (internal stresses) problems but this hasn't occurred with any of the barrels I've use it with.

Attachment: BarrelCool.JPG (Downloaded 195 times)



 Posted: Wed Nov 24th, 2010 12:23 AM
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Guncrank
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Offfhand,

Thought about the use of CO2 or Nitrogen but got scared of causing micro cracks in the surface of the metal in the interior of the barrel.

My thoughts on the matter were that, steel as with every type material, when heat is applied the material will expand and when cooled it will contract. If this expansion and contraction takes place over too wide a range in to short a period of time the natural elasticity of the product will not be able to follow the movement and a breakdown/failure of the product will occur. With barrel steel at normal operating temperatures several things may be happening with very rapid cooling...
1. You may be causing the sort of hardening that will occur when hot steel is quenched in water, making, in this case the surface of the steel brittle.
2. Frequent repetitions of the rapid heating and cooling would then lead to micro failures in the surface of the steel which would be observed as accelerated barrel ware. 

At least that was my thinking on cooling with any type of cold liquid.



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 Posted: Wed Nov 24th, 2010 04:55 AM
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stevekoozer
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 Wow neat ideas and here I was thinking that soaking a rag in 100% isopropyl alcohol and wiping down my barrel whilst gopher shooting in the summer was pretty slick but I see now that I am not quite as smart as I thought I was. Works faster than letting the rifle sit but not like that CO2 set up hmmmm gets me thinking I may have to look into one of those.    



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 Posted: Wed Nov 24th, 2010 11:27 AM
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Offfhand
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Abe, as mentioned in my above post on using CO2 for barrel cooling, I was concerned about the effect of rapid cooling. But as it turns out,no problems with any of my rifles. Come to think of it, the rapid cooling may even be beneficial. "Freezing" barrels in liquid nitrogen is now a common treatment for improving rifle barrels as well increasing the life of machine tools, gears, etc. And it's hard to imagine a more rapic cooling than that.



 Posted: Wed Nov 24th, 2010 01:31 PM
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ghrit
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I think guncrank might be right about microcracks being a possibility, getting the bore to shrink faster than the outside might exceed the elasticity of the barrel metal.  Cryo treatment of barrels isn't new, but cooling down to liquid nitrogen (I think) temperatures is done in stages, not just dunked.  Knowing a bit of the effects of uneven circumferential cooling, I think I might put a "jacket" on the outside of the barrel and put the CO2 on the outside rather than down the bore.  (I still like the air mover, way less costly, and gives you time to sit back and enjoy the day.) 



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 Posted: Wed Nov 24th, 2010 02:02 PM
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swampshooter
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I don't think that the temperatures involved here are high enough to make steel expand and contract fast enough to make any difference.



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 Posted: Wed Nov 24th, 2010 08:54 PM
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muley guy
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I kinda agree that rapid and radical changes in temperature would cause some metal fatigue but as I am not a metallurgist I could be convinced otherwise. I like the cooling air pump idea though.  I use a small model that plugs into the cigarette lighter and is used for inflating my pontoon boat and comes with adapters for different sized orifices. When winter is over here in Montana (late July) I will give that a try. I am too chicken to use that rapid cooling idea unless someone from McMillan or Hart barrels is a member of the forum and speaks to that as a good idea.

muley guy



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 Posted: Sat Nov 27th, 2010 02:47 PM
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Bigdog57
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Now this is some great brainworking!  Y'all have invented the "Air-cooled Bolt-action Rifle".......   :lol:

 

I have those same Coleman air pumps.....  hmmm......   :wink:



 Posted: Sat Nov 27th, 2010 04:26 PM
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Paul B
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I've been using one of those pumps for several years now. They work quite fast this time of year when due to time constraints I might have to do a load series in a bit of a hurry. However, In Tucson's summer they don't really speed thing up all that much, at least not when it is 110 in the shade. I have been thinking about using a small ice chest with two holes drilled near the bottom, run the hose from the pump through the holes and seal with silicone. usually the air during our summers is dry enough that condensation inside the barrel should not be a problem but a cleaning rod and plenty of dry patches should alleviate that problem.

Paul B.



 Posted: Sat Nov 27th, 2010 05:08 PM
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Bigdog57
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And now combining a Swamp Cooler with rifles.....  I love it!  And I know my local Tractor Supply carries a variety of clear tubing sizes...... 

Oh gosh - you guys are gonna cost me a little more money......    but it's getting cooler, and it sounds like a good winter :thumbs:project. 



 Posted: Sun Nov 28th, 2010 07:26 PM
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ghrit
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Paul B wrote: I've been using one of those pumps for several years now. They work quite fast this time of year when due to time constraints I might have to do a load series in a bit of a hurry. However, In Tucson's summer they don't really speed thing up all that much, at least not when it is 110 in the shade. I have been thinking about using a small ice chest with two holes drilled near the bottom, run the hose from the pump through the holes and seal with silicone. usually the air during our summers is dry enough that condensation inside the barrel should not be a problem but a cleaning rod and plenty of dry patches should alleviate that problem.

Paul B.
Why would you not coil the tubing in the ice and take it directly to the barrel?  No water pickup along the way, so thinks me, and no need for holes in the cooler so you can put the beer in it for later.



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 Posted: Mon Nov 29th, 2010 12:28 AM
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JOKER
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we used this to cool gas in race cars with dry ice   LOOOONG  TIMEAGO coffe can copper tubing dry ice   WHAT now add alcohol     lots of good thoughts and ideas



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