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Thread: 308.. 20 inch vs 24 inch

  1. #21
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    I have been running a 24 inch 308 in local club matches. When it comes time to re barrel, I will go with a 20 inch. My main reason is for match shooting I just built a 6.5x47, which shoots circles around my 30 cal. Just about 1.5 mils less drop at 1K. Still love good ol 308 though.

  2. #22
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    I would say the better question for 308 is: 18 inch or 22 inch.

    Opinions vary from AO to AO given the elevation, temp, and atmospherics and there variance across this great land. It drives me up the wall when some dude out west a mile above sea level can't comprehend why my 168gr down here in the plains isn't tracking to to 1000y when he can "ring steel all day long at 1200".

    Personally, I haven't seen much difference in 185 juggernauts coming out of a 22 compared to a 24" in terms of velocity/performance. If I want to get greedy, I'll switch calibers. IMHO, if you want longer than 24" for anything that's not competition driven...go magnum. Might as well have something to show for all that thing.

    I used to like 20...until I went with 18/18.5. I like having the end of my muzzle device be no longer than a 20" plain. I've tried 16 but I'm not so sure where I need to be with twist and a few other factors didn't really leave me wanting to go below 18 for a 308 given that it still worked with every bullet I would want to use.

    Living in a profession where I carry a bolt gun more than I shoot it at work, go as short as you can and stay within whatever ballistic parameters you feel you need.

  3. #23
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    24" will make a difference going out to 1000

    20" will not lose that much in terms of fps but should be very slightly more accurate due to a stiffer barrel

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by C-grunt View Post
    It looks like I'll be buying my AI AT by the end of the year. I'm sticking with 308 for now and will be buying another barrel (likely a 26 inch 6.5 CM) in the future. This rifle is strictly for target shooting and maybe non serious PRS type competition. Currently have access to 1360 yard range. Currently dont have a 308 suppressor and one is not in the near future plans.

    Should I go with the 20 inch or 24 inch 308 barrel? Am I going to see enough of an improvement in downrange performance with the longer barrel to justify the extra length? I plan on going for the 1360 gong.
    It helps that you added specifics about your planned uses, "1360 gong" and "target shooting."

    For that use (versus for a more GP 'handy' rifle that's useful for other things), I'd go with 24" so you can milk the max velocity out of your barrel. The gunsmith who did some work on mine does PRS and tactical comps himself and builds rifles for a lot of guys who do (H&H Precision), and strongly recommended 24" for this type of usage. If I were going for the 'one rifle' or GP rifle concept in .308, I'd get 20" or maybe even 18", for something that is more handy and especially if you decide to later run suppressed.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by C-grunt View Post
    It looks like I'll be buying my AI AT by the end of the year. I'm sticking with 308 for now and will be buying another barrel (likely a 26 inch 6.5 CM) in the future. This rifle is strictly for target shooting and maybe non serious PRS type competition. Currently have access to 1360 yard range. Currently dont have a 308 suppressor and one is not in the near future plans.

    Should I go with the 20 inch or 24 inch 308 barrel? Am I going to see enough of an improvement in downrange performance with the longer barrel to justify the extra length? I plan on going for the 1360 gong.
    Based on your intended use, you really should go with the longer barrel. There really is no disadvantage of going longer for what you plan on doing with it. I went with a 20” years ago and regretted it. It might not sound like very much of a velocity change but it feels like it when you are stretching things out.

    Now if we were talking about a brush gun or hog hunting AR, I would recommend a 16” barrel to make the gun more handy to carry around.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by KUSA View Post
    Based on your intended use, you really should go with the longer barrel. There really is no disadvantage of going longer for what you plan on doing with it. I went with a 20” years ago and regretted it. It might not sound like very much of a velocity change but it feels like it when you are stretching things out.

    Now if we were talking about a brush gun or hog hunting AR, I would recommend a 16” barrel to make the gun more handy to carry around.
    +1 on above

  7. #27
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    I just picked up a Rem 700 in .308 with a 20" barrel. I figured I'll never go past 1K yds. and it should be fine for that. My thinking was the shorter the barrel, the stiffer it would be. I plan on hanging a silencer on the end of it. Just a personal opinion.

  8. #28
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    20” is fine to 1k. Introduce a bit of wind and it all seems to fall apart if you get much further out. A buddy of mine and I were shooting at 1250 one windy day in the desert, me 19” 308, him 24” 6.5 Creed. Took him 3 shots to get on a 20x12 plate. Let’s just say I got into double digits before I hit.

  9. #29
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    Mark and I gave the steel a rest and shots groups and chrono for the most part this week. The 24 inch barrel gave 200fps more speed than the 20 inch in one load of 175SMK's, FYI.

    Also worth of note, we shot 2 each 300WM and one recoiled more and gave about 40fps faster performance in otherwise nearly identical guns. Some barrels will shoot faster than others.

    PB
    "Air Force / Policeman / Fireman / Man of God / Friend of mine / R.I.P. Steve Lamy"

  10. #30
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    I've got a couple Rem 700 308s. both started out as 26" varmint contour barrels. They have both been cut to 20.5" and 22".

    I shoot a fairly stiff handload designed for long range shooting to 1000+ yards. My load consists of the Hornady 208gr Amax bullet, loaded long, over 49.0gr of RL-17.

    This load made 2690 fps from the 26" barrel. It makes 2580 fps from the 20.5", and 2600 fos from the 22". A velocity loss of about 20 fps per inch with my handload.

    I've shot many of the lighter bullets in the 155-178gr range also. In my experience, the 24" will give you a bit of an advantage in MV, but the biggest gains for long range with the 308 come with selecting the bullet with a high enough BC to remain supersonic the furthest.

    I've found the 208 Amax, 210 Berger, and 215 Berger perform very well in the 308, for the really longest distances. For reference, I live and shoot around 4000ft ASL. Shooting the 20.5" and 22" 308 to 1200-1500 yards is very doable if the wind is mild. I'm talking steel and rock plinking.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by MontanaMarine; 10-29-19 at 13:58.

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