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Thread: barrel length for brennekes

  1. #1

    Default barrel length for brennekes

    I have a cheap shotgun with a 28" barrel that I'm going to modify a bit for bear defense...
    I'm trying to decide how short to cut the barrel. Some sources state that all powder in modern shells is burned in the first 14", so a 30" barrel has no velocity advantage over an 18" barrel. Other sources state that there's a velocity advantage up to 22"
    Specifically, I plan to use Brenneke Heavy Field Short Magnums... if that comes to "bear" on this :-)

  2. #2
    Member Big Al's Avatar
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    I would make it 18 1/2". That is with the action closed measued from the inside of the barrel to the bolt face or breech face to the end of the barrel (s).

  3. #3

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    Another vote for 18 1/2. I have a Mossberg Mariner, which has that length.

    Think about the possibility of getting into some thick stuff (foolishly, perhaps, or deliberately as I was required to do frequently.) Then go swing a few lengths at the gunshop. Then think again about getting into some thick stuff.

    18 1/2 was the answer I came up with.

    p.s. I love shooting Brennekes with it. Well, maybe not the 3" magnums. But my shotgun does love Brennekes.

    p.p.s. I would give some thought to whether that heavy field short would get the job done, even in the magnum version. Personally, I practice with the 2 3/4" loads, but I carry the 3" magnum for this purpose in the field. I do shoot a very few 3" in practice to make sure it hits the same place, but it is no fun shooting several with that light gun. Brenneke also recommends the 3" magnum loads for dangerous game.

  4. #4

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    So... does anybody know specifically how many more fps I'd get out of a 22" barrel than out of an 18" barrel? Specifically with the HFSM slug?

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Nope, but I just have to say that with a Rem R3 (Limbsaver) pad the Brenneke 3" mags (original or Black Magic Magnums) are soft as kittens.
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Member stevelyn's Avatar
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    Last couple of bears I whacked with Brennekes were out of an 18" barrel. Had a complete broadside pass through on both.

    I used the Brenneke Original 1 1/8 oz. 2 3/4". Punched through like a hard cast bullet.

    I never chronographed them.
    Now what ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by go_north View Post
    I have a cheap shotgun with a 28" barrel that I'm going to modify a bit for bear defense...
    I'm trying to decide how short to cut the barrel. Some sources state that all powder in modern shells is burned in the first 14", so a 30" barrel has no velocity advantage over an 18" barrel. Other sources state that there's a velocity advantage up to 22"
    Specifically, I plan to use Brenneke Heavy Field Short Magnums... if that comes to "bear" on this :-)

    I think all the powder is "all-burned" in less than 14" but the pressure is still accelerating the slug down the barrel, an important point. That said, there is a legal limit and that is 18" The shortest you can buy is 18.5" and (1/2" of ATF safety). I don't think there is more than 20-25 fps difference between 18.5" vs 20" with a slug. the choke makes more difference than barrel length. The 3" magnum guns generally have 20" barrels and the 2 3/4" chambered guns have 18.5". I think I like it that way. The magnums are loud enough, I wouldn't want them shorter. If you are using magnum ammo, 2 3/4" or 3", I'd suggest 20" for the best compromise of noise management, handling and ballistic efficiency.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    The 3" magnum guns generally have 20" barrels and the 2 3/4" chambered guns have 18.5".
    Two of the most common short-barreled shotgun series, the Mossberg 500 (18.5") and the Remington 870 (18"), will shoot 3" shells in addition to the 2 3/4".

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