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Any major pluses or minuses to either? Seems the melonited sells more. I have always favored ss barrels in other calibers so any reason to not get one in 6.8?
My testing has shown a melonited barrel to be 25 to 50 feet per second faster than a SS barrel. ARP make s both. I've found comparable accuracy with either melonited or SS.
 

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Is there any difference in barrel life?
 

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Personally, I'd expect the melonite barrel to pretty much live forever. Eventually, you should expect to "shoot out" your SS barrel. Typically, I'd expect to see a bit more accuracy out of a SS barrel, but the ARP melonite barrels I have provide fantastic accuracy. As such, for ARP, I'm biased towards the melonite choices. That's not universal across all makers, though. My Rainier Stainless ultra-match barrels are among the most accurate i own, whereas I'm also amazed at the accuracy LMT can produce out of chrome lined barrels. IMO, what matters more than the material is that the maker has mastered whatever material and process they are using. But, all things equal, melonite is relatively low cost (compared to CL) and extremely durable which makes for a great value.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So the general consensus seems to be no downside to melonite then. Other than the obvious edge in corrosion resistance going to the melonite and possible barrel life enhancement no "gain" of accuracy no other benefits of melonite.
I doubt Id shoot enough of the 6.8 to shoot out the bore and I generally baby "most" of my guns si I dont feel Id be loosing any tremendous benefit by not getting a melonited barrel.
On an ARP SS barrel like the 16" Scout is the bore and chamber still melonited but just not the outside or am I just way wrong and the chromemoly barrels are only treated inside with the melonite and when the listings say melonited it mean only the bore and chamber. SS barrels are just that, ss inside and out no treatment anywhere.
I generally see better accuracy with ss barrels myself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thats what I figured but thanks for clearing that up fella.
Since its you taking and filling the orders H whats the margin of treated vs untreated barrels going out the door?
 

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I have a 20”ss whoever makes barrels for stag and a 18” 3r melonite ARP that matches anything I can do with the 20” so shorter and less weight is definitely an advantage thanks H for the great barrel and bolt combination.
 

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Have seen melonite barrels tested against stainless and chrome lined in 5.56 for 20,000 rounds. Six rifles with two of each type both stainless were removed from test at 12,000 rounds or soon after, chrome lined just past at 15,000 then melonite treated 4140 and 41V50 CHF went full 20,000 rounds. Took group of men firing till rifles got so hot rounds would cook off and allowed to cool. Only cleaned and oiled when began having feed/fire/extraction issues. All were slugged and had chamber casts made before test once at 10,000 rounds then as each barrel was removed from test.

When entire test was finished they not only did the chamber casts and slugged bores a final time they sectioned all barrels. The stainless barrels were toast but had held up to fair amount of abuse before accuracy went from great to bad to keyholing. The chrome lined showed double plating was gone at 10,000 round cleaning but continued to shoot adequately another few thousand rounds. The two melonite barrels were still grouping well and still passed all tests from chamber wear, throat wear, muzzle wear and rifling at 20,000 rounds it was surmised they may have gone another 10,000 rounds if test not stopped.

Most of my precision rifles are single point cut rifled stainless usually cryo treated but have had a couple barrels for recent bolt rifle builds sent off for melonite to see if get more than the usual 800 to 1,200 rounds my 22-250 AI and 22 CHeetah sometimes lose throats and thus their tack driving accuracy. When built my first 22 Nosler John at White Oak told me to expect 1,000 rounds of tack driving, another 1,000 as range plinker then replace. Some have held true especially single point cut rifled stainless. Have two 5R 4130 melonite barrels that are still sub MOA at 2,000 rounds so it's how much accuracy do you demand and how much abuse to you plan to expose it to. Whenever decide to run a 6.8 spc II upper on full auto lower it's usually one of the many 14.7" FN CHF melonite they were selling and would add a couple every time they went on sale. The two uppers with most select fire rounds and overall abuse are still fine. Have some ARP 3R and 5R melonite tubes with higher round counts that still shoot as well as when new. My precision 6.8 barrels are White Oak Armament 20" 0.996" profile to gad block and 0.875 to 11% target crown and use them for mid/large varmints and paper punching. It's all in what your wanting and for most who may never shoot 1,000 rounds from single rifle it probably doesn't matter.
 

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Around 2009-10 I went out to test a piston system, stuck a new mid grade stainless barrel someone had sent me in an upper. I fired 820rounds(a tin) as fast as I could pull the trigger and reload the 4 or 5 mags I had with me. The first time I had ever seen a stainless barrel turn blue, the melonite gas block turned a chalky blue. It smoked for a good 10 minutes. When i got back to the shop I looked at the bore with a borescope. The throat and maybe the first 2" of rifling was fire checked bad with chunks missing. I guess I should have used a melonite treated barrel.
 
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