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Thread: .257 Roberts and shorter barrels

  1. #1
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    Question .257 Roberts and shorter barrels

    Greetings,
    I have a T/C Encore that I plan to use as a take-down rifle for carry on a snow machine for predator hunting, and I'll probably take it with me as a back-up rifle for black tail in the late fall. I have a .257 Roberts barrel (24") on the way, and I would like to shorten it for compactability. I have searched the archives, and found excellent information from past posts about shortening a barrel and accuracy potential, increased muzzle blast, use of faster burning powders in the shorter barrel, etc...really great stuff from fellow handloaders! At this point I'm interested in hearing if anyone has used the Roberts in shorter barrels (16"-20"), and how well did it perform. I know this is a very specific question, but thoughts or conjecture are also welcomed. Thanks in advance.
    Doc

  2. #2
    Member BigHorn Hunter's Avatar
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    My Dad has a 20" mauser in 257. He gets 2700 with a 115 nosler w/ H4350. It will do over 3000 easy with 75's.

  3. #3

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    I have two customs- 22" and 26", and until recently had a Ruger M77 Ultralight. Can't remember if the Ruger barrel was 18" or 20". In any of them I don't remember muzzleblast being all that different or bothersome.

    Comparing velocities between the Ruger and customs is problematic, because both customs have long throats for seating bullets out to 3" overall, while the Ruger had a standard throat. There's a 3-4 grain increase in max loads for the customs compared to the Ruger. The 26" custom can nudge a 115 grian Nosler to just over 3000 fps and the 22 would top 2900, while I never tried to push the Ruger much above 2700 fps with the same bullet. Favorite powder in all three is H-4831 with both 100 and 115 grain bullets. As I recall the Ruger would top 2900 with the 100 grainers and not work up a sweat.

    It wouldn't be my impulse to go as short as 16", but my uses may have no bearing on yours.

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    Thanks guys for taking the time to share some useful information and experiences with me. Because of the specific application that I intend for this rifle, I know that I will cut the barrel down...probably to 20"...maybe 18" or 19". I've never owned a rifle with a 16" barrel, and it's kind of hard for me to imagine, but who knows...thanks again.
    Doc

  5. #5
    Member alaska bush man's Avatar
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    Thumbs up 20"

    I would not go past 20". I have a custom M96 with a 22" great little rifle with the Barnes TSX bullets.......

    Fine you a good Rem 600 or Rem 788 Carbine in 243 Win if you need a short rifle for Blacktails.
    Alaska

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    Member Big Al's Avatar
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    I sure would not shorten a 24" barrel until I had thought this out, If you are going to AI the barrel then I would say go for it. But not as a standard chambering. You would get the velocity back by the AI'ing the chamber.

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    Arrow Epilogue...another learning experience

    Well...I offer the following experience because I think I owe it to you good folks...

    ...I received my 24" barrel in the mail the other day, took it directly to my garage work-bench, mounted it to the Encore frame (in rifle stock configuration) and installed the forend. As I picked it up, held it and shouldered it, I was immediately hit with a surprising reality...I was holding a short little rifle...already. I even double checked the barrel length with a tape measure to make sure that I wasn't sold a shorter barrel by mistake...measuring it (twice) confirmed that it was a 24 incher.

    I then embarrassingly realized that in all of my preliminary thinking about this project I had forgotten a very basic fact, which I share with you "hat in hand". I had forgotten that I was already losing quite a few inches in overall rifle length becasue of the short action of the Encore (as compared to my other rifles with 24" barrels). So, as I held this really handy little rifle wearing a full sized barrel several thoughts came to my mind...I like the feel of this rifle just as it is...I sure can't imagine going too much shorter with this little guy without it feeling very strange in my hands (like 22", maybe 20")...and I sure can be kind of a dufus sometimes.

    In my defense (meager as it it) I have only used my Encore over the years in scoped pistol configuration...a .223 with a 12". Working with it as a pistol I have learned alot about handloading for it Vs. handloading for a rifle in the same caliber...but my stick time at the range with the Encore pistol has also affirmed for me (repeatedly and quite often)...I am not a pistol marksman...I do admire those who are, but I am not...even though I can sometimes pull off a good string. Rifles are a different story all together for me, as I have always been and probably always will be a rifleman. Hence, my current interest in the Encore as a rifle...

    Anyway, sorry for the lengthy post. I offer it as information for others and another lesson in humility for myself. Not sure yet what I will do, but we'll see. Thanks again for your responses and thoughts. Now to the range to get to know this new little Bob in my shooting community.

    Doc

  8. #8
    Member Big Al's Avatar
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    The two ctgs that P.O.ACKLEY wildcatted that showed the biggest improvement in are the .250/3000 and .257 Roberts. If you have a barrel that shoots well, I still recommend this conversion to you. I think if NED ROBERTS had been alive when ACKLEY Wildcatted the case, he would have loved the Cartridge. Just as you would today. I don't think there is a better caribou round! Good luck with your new barrel.

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