View Full Version : Gun Barrel

01-20-2010, 11:24 AM
What steel should I use to make a gun barrel? This is for .25 caliber pistol.

01-20-2010, 12:12 PM
Depends on the pressure generated by the cartridge. Black powder pressure levels can get away with mild steel or some of the leaded steels that cut nice. Higher pressure rifle and pistol cartridges need a stronger alloy. 4140 is popular or 416 stainless.

01-21-2010, 11:40 AM
Thank You. It is a cartridge pistol. Do you have any suggestions for a newbie?


01-21-2010, 05:03 PM
Avoid 1018-1090, stressproof/1144. 4140 prehard can be drilled and rifled and will be nearly as strong as most factory chrome moly barrels. Might be a little more than is needed for 25ACP but would be needed for 256 Win.

loose nut
01-21-2010, 06:25 PM
I read in a gunsmithing book some time ago, that listed the appropriate steels for barrels, that for a .22 cal barrel any steel was usable, a .25 cal isn't going to be that much more powerful if any.

Jim Shaper
01-21-2010, 09:07 PM
Why wouldn't you buy a pre-rifled blank from a reputable company?

I can't see where the home machinist is going to produce better rifling than a specialist.

01-22-2010, 01:02 PM
How do you plan to rifle it?

Doc Hoy
01-28-2010, 04:15 PM
This is a good conversation. (A good conversation is one in which I think I might learn something)

I am a black powder shooter and have done only a little gunsmithing. Repairs, rebuilds and upgrades. I am no machinist by any stretch.

I am learning on a Grizzly 3358 Milling machine and a 10 x 22 lathe.

I am not a dummy but I can not look into the future to a day when I would be confident doing my own rifling.

With regard to rifling, where does a guy like me (and for that matter perhaps the OP) start?

All of the research I have done, tells me it is prohibitively expensive for the weekender.

01-28-2010, 05:10 PM
I have a .25 barrel I'll never use. It's a round tube about 3-1/4 long, made to press fit into a hole. It was originally made to go in a small .25 auto pistol, but never used. The OD is .431 with a larger and smaller dia. on the chamber end. There is a plug in the chamber end that can be tapped out after installation. Then it needs the chamber reamed. The rifling is already there. If it will suit your purpose, I will trade it in exchange for your address. Hopefully the price is within your budget.;) Best Regards- Warren

Jim Shaper
01-28-2010, 10:16 PM
Buy a barrel blank from any number of barrel makers for around or well under 100 bucks (they will be more for bigger barrels, but all the .22 stuff I've seen is under 100 in the white).

I'm not a gunsmith, and don't claim to have done anything but make some parts fit better over the years. I can tell you, that making a rifled barrel from bar stock is going to be horribly expensive for a one-off. Just getting the hole down the middle isn't exactly a trivial task.

01-28-2010, 10:55 PM
.25 caliber rifle barrels use a groove diameter of about .257", while .25 acp (automatic Colt pistol) uses a nominal groove of .251". The twist rate for most centerfire rifle barrels in .25 caliber is 1 turn in 10 to 12 inches, the .25 acp is normally 1-16".


01-29-2010, 03:39 PM
Make your barrel out of anything you want and install a barrel liner. They are a pretty decent. Defintely not match-grade stuff, but a liner will open up a lot of options for you.


Cheap, too.