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Old 02-12-2013, 08:42 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Commonly sold from brush research in their older catalogs was 'The Airsmith's Kit'.
This included the cocker back bore hones, mag tube hone and the 600AO and 800AO barrel hones.
This was owned by airsmiths coast to coast.
Manufacturers too.
I know from a conversation years ago that Glenn Palmer flexhoned his barrels using the 800AO. Whether Craig continues to do so I'm not sure.
Whether they're used on barrels he produces now or not, Bob Long and I had a conversation about flexhones and he was a veteran in their use and had owned the airsmiths kit, it would have done his earliest barrels.
Tom Kaye was also familiar with them and had used them, though I was not clear whether it was his personal barrels or AGD ones.

So that tells us that if flexhoning isn't used commercially now, it was to some extent and up to fairly recently. With the 800AO as the finishing hone.


The only commercial finish in a barrel that is capable of anything like the .05 micron deliverable by hone is the stiffi carbon fiber barrels. I was lucky enough to get to chat with one of their engineers when Site Mfg was planning a barrel for the TPX and they could literally go below even the level they do if there were any point.
They have a +/- .0005 tolerance in bore size according to their specs.

I hope that helps.
Rob
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Old 02-12-2013, 09:49 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I know that CCI roller burnishes their barrels.
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Old 02-13-2013, 12:28 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by alpha434 View Post
If you just want 'palmers good', then just use their process.

Their finish is just an industrial grade finish and isn't at all notable. But there also isn't any science indicating that you need a good finish at all.
Again, at this point, I'm not looking to replicate anyone's factory finish. Just to learn the extent to which common barrels are finished. I also concur there is scant if any science indicating the necessity of a highly refined bore. Moreover, and related to that, I'm deeply skeptical about performance claims pertaining thereunto (case in point, I own and shoot through some of those yucky, wavy barrels Spider and I lamented earlier ). But owing both to that very lack of evidence, and that very skepticism, and owing further to some question marks that have arisen on the matter of late, I'd like to steer into those waters, just to satisfy my curiosity on a couple of points.

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No doubt, but there is tons of stuff in there on roller burnishing. The technical conversation went pretty deep late in the thread.
Yes, I know. I perused that thread a while back, before posting here. Again, thank you for bringing it to attention.

AgentSmith,

Thank you for posting here, as some of your past and current posts on the subject have proven intriguing. Indeed, I was hoping to enlist you as a conversation partner in the area of the second question. For that I will start a second thread, so as to keep things more distinct. But one thing that has concerned me about the flex hone business is the grit listing. If indeed (as it seems to be the case that) some places hone, and have honed, then I'd love to find out the finish refinement. You note the Brush Research hones at 600AO and 800AO respectively (aluminum oxide?), but this raises a flag. On every common scale with which I'm familiar, be it ANSI/CAMI, FEPA (P or F), JIS, mesh, etc., 800 is a cobblestone road. It may as well be crushed gravel. I'd never let anything remotely that rough anywhere near the inside of a barrel that I cared about.

In loose averages, on the ANSI scale, 800 is around 12 microns. FEPA P is around 23. FEPA F is around 6. JIS is around 18. None of these are refined by any means. Yet you then speak of 0.05 micron, seemingly in reference to these hones. That is an astronomical leap in refinement over any 800 I'm familiar with.

Can you say a bit more about this? Any idea what scale they are using, or what they mean by those numbers?

B_i_s_c_u_i_t,

That is helpful to know. Thank you.
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:04 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I was just as confused for a long time, so what I said on it wasn't clear, nor was BRs literature always a help.

Their chart lists the 800AO and the LA together, when all other hones are listed seperately. It says 800 LA .05-.2 micron. This led me to believe that the LA I ordered was 800 grit. When I talked to a salesman at more length in 07, he told me the LA was 1200 grit. This led me to believe the chart was giving the range from 800, rougher, to the LA, finer. If the LA can't produce a finish with an Ra of .05 microns, then brush research has some explaining to do.
The grit ratings can be deceiving. Remember this is a berry hone with each berry touching at a single point, not a solid stone and they are self tensioning, oversized according to purpose. The actual diameter of a 600AO 68cal hone is greater than the .715 of the 68cal LA. I know when levigated alumina is made as a handheld stone, it has it's grit listed over 1,000.
There's some clearer info on this site that carries them also: General Application and Selection of the Flex-Hone Tool

A lot of the same info in this article, but put very well.

Diverse Applications for Ball-Style Honing : Production Machining

I only speak a limited amount of engineer and almost no machinist. As I've said before, I first discovered there was a finer hone than what I had been using by chance. After that it was a long time figuring even a guess as to the explanation for what I was seeing with my own eyes.

I didn't say anything for many years and am still completely unsure saying anything about it was the right thing to do. Being correct doesn't get one as many friends as being quiet. If some company had come bragging or pulled a smartparts and tried to patent using it on barrels I would not have been happy with myself at all though.

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Old 02-13-2013, 03:07 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Now, to start with, virtually no manufacturer drills from solid bar stock these days.
Exception to the rule right here

PS our bores are 5 micro-finish, prior to being even smoother after anodize. I could probably do better but it wouldn't make any real difference... bore size is controlled within a few tenths (and is consistent end to end and concentric... not difficult when working with such short stock bores).

as for flex honing: it's an excellent method for getting good finish out of a not so good finish, assuming the right grade is used. currently we're achieving those finishes without this step and I like to avoid it, but it comes in really handy for refinishing and such (we had some barrels which had racking marks from a prior anodizer inside the bore which were salvaged by means of flex honing out the marks).
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Old 02-13-2013, 03:46 AM   #26 (permalink)
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I have been asked into the conversation, so I will relate the information I have regarding the brass tube I use for barrel stock.

I *do not* have the tools to gauge the finish, so I can not tell you anything more than this.

I order the custom tube drawn over a mandrel, with the emphasis on bore quality from the manufacturer. I have measured all the tubes I received, before signing off on the run, and all were consistently .678" ID.

As to the finish, it could be described as "mirror". If i use 2000 grit with oil, there is a noticeable increase in the haziness of the reflection. If I use toothpaste, there is no major change in reflective quality. I *believe* that toothpaste uses something like 6000 grit.

I am sure this is useless information, but it is information.

Ty
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Brass Freak compatible and Equation inserts in .665, .670, .675, .678, .680 and .685

Current Freak compatible inserts in stock:
.665 = 0, .670 = 16, .675 = 3, .678 = 4, .680 = 4, .682 = 4, .685 = 11

Still selling brass tubing, with .678 barrel stock now available!

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Old 02-13-2013, 05:29 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Ty, I'll pop one of your inserts on a digital surface guage sometime if I get a chance, I think it would score quite well. It also helps that the surface finish is parallel with the length of the bore (due to being drawn this way), as opposed to bored/honed finishes which, as fine as they may be, have the surface finish perpendicular to the bore (may not make a huge difference, but it can be measured when guaging surface finish by measuring with and against the pattern of the finish).
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:26 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Just for grins and giggles, I'd like to know... Of course the number won't actually mean anything to me without a reference.

Ty
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Brass Monkey Customs

Brass Freak compatible and Equation inserts in .665, .670, .675, .678, .680 and .685

Current Freak compatible inserts in stock:
.665 = 0, .670 = 16, .675 = 3, .678 = 4, .680 = 4, .682 = 4, .685 = 11

Still selling brass tubing, with .678 barrel stock now available!

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Old 02-13-2013, 08:55 AM   #29 (permalink)
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That brings up one point I want to clarify about my background and experience.
I've played just pistol for 27 years now.
What that means in terms of this dicussion is that until the last few years, no barrelmaker worth the name would bother with me.
Barrels of the quality you guys take for granted are made for pistols by one group and one group only. You.
I agree that the barrels you guys are making have surface equal or better than what I can do with a hone. The flip side of that is that I can get a finish nearly as good as you can produce from scratch with a hone instead. In ANY barrel with a hand drill at the tailgate of my truck. Even a barrel that can't be removed from the pistol, like the zeus types.
Apoc,
I'm still saving for a retro, so I'll get to check out one of your barrels soon enough.

As this thread noted originally, I'm not saying a barrel as good can't be or isn't being made. Common? No. Eclipse barrels, dye barrels, tippmann barrels, freak barrels, none of these approach the level of finish you guys are making, IMO.

Rob
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:45 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Ty, Apoc, and agentSmith,

Thank you all immensely. This is most helpful, especially coupled with the info already on the table (and no, Ty, your information was not 'useless' by any stretch. ).


AgentSmith, I suspect it is worth a look into the claimed numbers listed by Brush Research. Your description of the finish produced, and that of others, indicates something much higher than what should be produced with 800, 1000, or even 2000, at least with standard grading.

Apoc, if it isn't a dark trade secret, would you care to share what sort of flex hone you use, and what sort of finish it produces?

But in any event, I think we have a pretty good sense here of the ballpark with respect to factory finishes.

Thanks to everyone who contributed!

Now on to the next question.
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