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How to fire lap a rifle

Notes by Donald K. Burleson

January 2011

Disclaimer:  I am a student, not an expert, and these are my  notes.  If you need an expert, consult any gun forum, they all claim to be rifle experts.

These are parts of our class notes for conventional high powered rifle competition training.

All brand new conventional competition high powered rifles should be fire-lapped to ensure that the barrel is super smooth and clear.  A failure to fire lap does not always mean a barrel with flaws, but 25 shots with fire lapping ensures that the barrel is properly broken-in.

This describes fire-lapping of a 308 Remington 600 rifle used in 1,000 yard competitions.

ALWAYS use a “shot log” to record each and every shot that is fired.  A 308 will have a 1,100 round lifetime for the barrel.  A .223 will have a much longer lifetime.

Our coach says that any conventional high-powered competition rifle barrel needs to be re-chambered after each 1,100 rounds.  The breech end is cut-off and a new chamber cut, making the barrel a few inches shorter.

How to fire lap a rifle

Fire lapping should be done first, before you mount any sights or a telescopic sight.  For our 308 Remington 600 rifle, our coach recommended using 24 rounds of Federal Gold Medal Match Cartridges.

At 50 yards, individual shots are made into a berm:

After each of the first 10 shots:

  1.  Remove the bolt.
  2.  STARTING from the breech end, run a brush wet with bore cleaner one-way out toward the muzzle end of the rifle.
  3.  After the brush exits at the muzzle end, remove it and withdraw the rod.
  4.  Run a clean patch, one way from the breech to the muzzle end of the barrel.  The third patch should look clean.

For shots 11-24, the fire-lapping is done every two shots, repeat steps 1-4.

After 24 rounds, the rifle is ready to accept sights.

 

 

Note: The opinions expressed on these pages are the sole opinion of Donald K. Burleson and do not reflect the opinions of Burleson Enterprises Inc. or any of its subsidiaries.

Suggestions?  We are always seeking new tips for the professional at leisure, and any suggestions would be most welcome.  If you find an error or have a suggestion for improving our content, we would appreciate your feedback. 

Copyright ? 1996 -  2010 by Donald K Burleson. All rights reserved.