14.5 pinned and welded 308 AR...Any reason not to? And what barrel would you guys suggest?

KCode

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Well I'm looking at getting into a 308 AR and want it as short as possible while being a rifle. So that lands us around 14.5" pinned and welded. I don't know crap about ARs in 308 other than there are two versions which are greatly different and parts for one don't work on the other. I do plan to run a suppressor on it, either a Sandman or Nomad.

But I guess where I'm stumped is what would be the best barrel for it around the $350 or less range? I don't plan to ever shoot it past 300 yards.

The only looking into it so far that I've done is Criterion barrels, not sure how you guys feel about them. But they offer some 308 options in 16 and 18 inch, so I would have to cut it down. The guy at Criterion did tell me to NOT go with chrome lined or nitride barrel if I plan to cut it down because it could ruin it, stick with Stainless he said.

I'm open to all suggestions!!!!!
 

celltech

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X-Caliber, McGowen, and others will custom make a barrel around that price range. Criterion is great, but I would not bother cutting an existing barrel down...
 
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KCode

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X-Caliber, McGowen, and others will custom make a barrel around that price range. Criterion is great, but I would not bother cutting an existing barrel down...

How good is X-Caliber vs McGowen? I've never entertained a custom barrel but if it's around my price point it seems to make the most sense.
 

celltech

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How good is X-Caliber vs McGowen? I've never entertained a custom barrel but if it's around my price point it seems to make the most sense.
I would consider them equals to each other. I have several X-Cal bolt action barrels and every one of them shoot 1/2" or better. They are not Bartleins, but they don't have the price tag either. They are both button rifled and hand lapped, but McGowen does offer cut rifling for more $$$. Looking at McGowen's site they do offer quite a few options for custom length and gas port size, but are more limited on profiles.
 

TonyTheTiger

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I've got two X-Calibers and three McGowens currently. The McGowens on average shoot slightly tighter, but I'm neither a BR level handloader nor a dedicated group shooter. X-Cal has more off the shelf contour options but McGowen will do anything you draw up at no charge. X-Cal will not do custom anything beyond what's in their drop down menus, McGowen is happy to do custom gas lengths and such.
Mos-Tek is another custom barrel company I've used that is happy to do the most bizarre stuff you can come up with.
 

just browsing

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    You should invest in good hearing protection and some fireproof gloves.
    Unless you want a pistol then stick with a 16" barrel and a minimum of midlength gas

    Was just gonna say this. Double up your ear pro and invest in a suppressor ASAP. That shit is going to rattle your brain.
     
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    TurboTrout

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    At 14.5 wouldn’t that make tons more sense for a 300bo or 458s, or even a 223 before a 308?
     

    msgriff

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    .358 Win is well suited for shorter barrels, especially if your max range is 300 yds. Other than the the barrel/MD, it's the same build as a .308. Fewer suppressor options and factory ammo can be expensive if you don't reload.
     

    KCode

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    Guys I really appreciate all of the suggestions. 308 will be the caliber though, don't want to go crazy into a wild cat for this. Want to keep it apple pie.

    Also I already have the receivers for the build. Will be probably running the PRI Delta handguard.
     
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    Jsp556

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    A quick google search shows V7, Spikes Tactical, Ballistic Advantage, X-caliber, and a couple others. I didn’t check prices. Armalite shows a 14” option if you wanted to use an armalite bcg & gas tube.

    ETA: Again, check with ADM
    595106B4-F2FC-4944-9F5E-BA6D7BFD432C.jpeg
     

    Constructor

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    Guys I really appreciate all of the suggestions. 308 will be the caliber though, don't want to go crazy into a wild cat for this. Want to keep it apple pie.

    Also I already have the receivers for the build. Will be probably running the PRI Delta handguard.
    Not suggesting changing calibers but a cartridge the size of a 308 needs barrel length to burn the powder. The shorter the barrel the less efficient it is. A 16" 308 has a lot of recoil and you don't get much velocity for it.
     

    BCP

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    Muzzle device will be the big thing. Some of the brakes out there are absolutely painful to shoot on shorter barrels.

    My PWS 308 Mk214 was a good rifle. Nothing wrong with that barrel length and 308.
     

    Bluedog82

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    What’s your intended use OP? Might help people here give suggestions.
     

    RUTGERS95

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    I built one, comes right to 16" with the brake and it's a blast. I used a KAK barrel on this build and love it. Sits with a 1-8x now
     

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    CaptArab

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    14" intermediate pinned solgw 5/8x24 nox with a sandman k would be fun. Still super loud but fun.

    I love pin and welds.
    I have a rifle length 16" but would like a intermediate 14" too.
     
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    msgriff

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    If you're going to P&W a 14.5" suppressed .308, you either need to figure out your gas drive first or use a .750" OD muzzle device if going with a .750 gas journal. A quality adjustable gas block would be a good idea.
     
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    GUNNER10

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    Not suggesting changing calibers but a cartridge the size of a 308 needs barrel length to burn the powder. The shorter the barrel the less efficient it is. A 16" 308 has a lot of recoil and you don't get much velocity for it.

    It really all depends, while its true a longer barrel is more efficient, from a practical standpoint, Barrel lengths have been trending down for quite some time. 13.5 inch 308's have been used down range in various applications for at least the last decade so i think an argument can be made that they have carved out a roll.

    I think the newer bullet designs are really good and allow some interesting rifles to be put together. I shoot a 24 inch 300WM, as well as inch 20 6.5CM gas gun, as well as a 308 gas guns in 13.5 and 16 inches and they are all great for their own reasons.

    I think short 308's are great in the 400 to 600 yard window.
     
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    JimmyT

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    Would like to see this short boi when you finish it! I could see this rifle being used with 135 grain Sierra Varmitres to hunt small bodied deer in tight terrain. Would make a great suppressor host to keep the OAL shorter than a jousting lance. Good luck with the build!
     

    RUTGERS95

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    It really all depends, while its true a longer barrel is more efficient, from a practical standpoint, Barrel lengths have been trending down for quite some time. 13.5 inch 308's have been used down range in various applications for at least the last decade so i think an argument can be made that they have carved out a roll.

    I think the newer bullet designs are really good and allow some interesting rifles to be put together. I shoot a 24 inch 300WM, as well as inch 20 6.5CM gas gun, as well as a 308 gas guns in 13.5 and 16 inches and they are all great for their own reasons.

    I think short 308's are great in the 400 to 600 yard window.
    agree
     

    hlee

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    So, what kind of velocities are you getting with these really short 308 ARs?

    Wilson combat claims 2520 from a 125 gr Seirra boat tail for their 300 Ham’r, and 2290 fps from the 150 gr Hornady sst- from a 16.25” barrel. Those numbers are better than the supersonic 300 BO and 7.62x39.

    How does that fire breathing 308 compare? I think a pretty salient argument can be made for the smaller cartridge in a much smaller package makes for a “better” all around gun, but I’m open to counter argument.

    That said, if Ruger’s SFAR gains traction, a small frame 308 is really interesting. I’d really like to see them put out a 16” rifle gas SFAR…
     

    RUTGERS95

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    With 1-8x

    Not sure about velocities as I've not measured but with DAG, I'm right at moa
     

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    RUTGERS95

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    Do you have a “naked” weight on that rifle? Unloaded, no optic.
    I can get you one this weekend. Of course I chose a heavier stock due to shorter barrel and recoil so it'd be lighter with a magpul or something but it balances nicely. Will get you a weight
     
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    GUNNER10

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    So, what kind of velocities are you getting with these really short 308 ARs?

    Wilson combat claims 2520 from a 125 gr Seirra boat tail for their 300 Ham’r, and 2290 fps from the 150 gr Hornady sst- from a 16.25” barrel. Those numbers are better than the supersonic 300 BO and 7.62x39.

    How does that fire breathing 308 compare? I think a pretty salient argument can be made for the smaller cartridge in a much smaller package makes for a “better” all around gun, but I’m open to counter argument.

    That said, if Ruger’s SFAR gains traction, a small frame 308 is really interesting. I’d really like to see them put out a 16” rifle gas SFAR…

    I think I've seen around 2400 for 175's out of a 13.5 inch 308 and around 2500 from 140gr 6.5's out of a 14.5 6.5CM.

    very rough generic data
    180 EL[email protected] is going about 1100fps at 1000 yards. @500 yards has around 1000lbs of energy left
    125 SMK @2300 is going about 750fps at 1000 yards @ 500 yards has around 325lbs of energy left

    I think 300blk has its place, especially if you are only taking shots out to a couple hundred yards. There is really no need for the weight take the extra weight of the 308 if not needed.

    The small frame 308's are interesting but I really wonder how shootable they are, as its not hard to shoot a 9lb AR all day.
     
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    Constructor

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    So, what kind of velocities are you getting with these really short 308 ARs?

    Wilson combat claims 2520 from a 125 gr Seirra boat tail for their 300 Ham’r, and 2290 fps from the 150 gr Hornady sst- from a 16.25” barrel. Those numbers are better than the supersonic 300 BO and 7.62x39.

    How does that fire breathing 308 compare? I think a pretty salient argument can be made for the smaller cartridge in a much smaller package makes for a “better” all around gun, but I’m open to counter argument.

    That said, if Ruger’s SFAR gains traction, a small frame 308 is really interesting. I’d really like to see them put out a 16” rifle gas SFAR…
    Factory 130gr MK319 ammo runs 2750 out of a 16" barrel (my 5R barrels). My 30 Herrett (6.8 wildcat) pushes the same 130gr bullet to 2600 out of a 16", some are getting close to 2800 out of an 18" barrel so more velocity than a 308 from a cartridge that use 30% less powder. A 16" 6.8 shoots a Factory Hornady 120gr at 2550(again 5R barrel).
    I just see a 14.5 or 16" 308 as a CQB-300yd rifle, if I plan of shooting 600 I'm not going to chop the barrel off. Out of the 3-16"308s I had I kept one to be a barrier defeating rifle, the other 2 will get 20" barrels.
     
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    Forward543

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    If dead set on .308, Black Hole barrels work well.
    It would also be wise to listen to what constructor has to say on the matter. He has seen an AR or 2, and has volumes of data on the application of the platform.
     

    hlee

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    I think I've seen around 2400 for 175's out of a 13.5 inch 308 and around 2500 from 140gr 6.5's out of a 14.5 6.5CM.

    very rough generic data
    180 [email protected] is going about 1100fps at 1000 yards. @500 yards has around 1000lbs of energy left
    125 SMK @2300 is going about 750fps at 1000 yards @ 500 yards has around 325lbs of energy left

    I think 300blk has its place, especially if you are only taking shots out to a couple hundred yards. There is really no need for the weight take the extra weight of the 308 if not needed.

    The small frame 308's are interesting but I really wonder how shootable they are, as its not hard to shoot a 9lb AR all day.
    I already have a 14 lb and 24" LR308 that is both pleasant and easy to shoot- but I hate carrying the pig further than from the truck to the bench. A small frame 308 that comes in at sub 7 lbs (naked) with a meaningful increase in velocity over a small frame cartridge (150 fps faster than the above mentioned 30 herret) is very interesting for a 'walk around' gun. I dove into the 6.5 grendel because it "mimics the ballistics of a 308 in a small frame package." And, it is stupid easy to shoot. And, and, Hornady Black in this cartridge is as close to match quality as I have come across without hand loading (at least since Hornady discontinued their Match line of 6.5 Grendel). But, there is no denying that "there is no replacement for displacement." A 7 lb 308 with a LPVO would make a dandy hunting rifle- even with a can hanging off the end.

    I can get ~2000 fps with a 125 gr bullet from my 8.5" 300 BO, but the primers are pretty flat. 1800-1900 is more comfortable. Where it really shines is putting a can on the end and still being more compact than a 16" AR.
     

    cas6969

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    The trimming is what I wouldn't want to do. lol I always avoided the Herett's back when I was big into TC's.

    What bolt face works with the 30-30 rim?
     

    cas6969

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    I see. More silly naming for no good reason that just muddies that water. lmao
    Firearms folks have a history of doing that and I don't recall it EVER helping the success of a cartridge, only confusing people and hurting it.
     

    KCode

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    What’s your intended use OP? Might help people here give suggestions.

    Just a fun rifle I can shoot steel one day, paper @ 300 yards the next, HD if I choose, or end of the world type gun.

    Just a fun gun at the end that would be more accurate than me @ 300 yards. I don't have a range anywhere that is longer than that.
     

    KCode

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    Well, I said 30 Herrett and you didn't know what I was talking about. It's a 30 Herret with a rimless case.

    End of the world you won't be finding 30 Herrett in the abandoned Cabelas! :rolleyes:

    Seriously though, I want a 308 so I can just reload for several rifles.
     

    GUNNER10

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    I already have a 14 lb and 24" LR308 that is both pleasant and easy to shoot- but I hate carrying the pig further than from the truck to the bench. A small frame 308 that comes in at sub 7 lbs (naked) with a meaningful increase in velocity over a small frame cartridge (150 fps faster than the above mentioned 30 herret) is very interesting for a 'walk around' gun. I dove into the 6.5 grendel because it "mimics the ballistics of a 308 in a small frame package." And, it is stupid easy to shoot. And, and, Hornady Black in this cartridge is as close to match quality as I have come across without hand loading (at least since Hornady discontinued their Match line of 6.5 Grendel). But, there is no denying that "there is no replacement for displacement." A 7 lb 308 with a LPVO would make a dandy hunting rifle- even with a can hanging off the end.

    I can get ~2000 fps with a 125 gr bullet from my 8.5" 300 BO, but the primers are pretty flat. 1800-1900 is more comfortable. Where it really shines is putting a can on the end and still being more compact than a 16" AR.

    Nice,

    I think that alot of this stuff really depends on what you want to do with a particular rifle and thinking about what makes sense. I have an 8lb SR25 set up with just an EoTech and honestly, it handles pretty nice, I could see swapping the Eotech for a TA33 and calling it done for a walk-about rifle on the east cost. a 7lb SF 308 with a lpvo could be pretty neat for a similar role.