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i have a m1a ss loaded i would prefer to have an 18" version instead. i would keep everything else the same except maybe add the smith coast guard muzzle brake at a later time. so which barrel would you guys recommend? i would like to be able to shoot 7.62 nato & still have the option of shooting .308. also is getting my barrel cut down, recrowned, & threaded an option?
 

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I'd save the barrel and get either a Kreiger or Criterion. Krieger is single point rifled and Criterion is button rifled. Rate of twist I went with was 1in 10". I'm very pleased.
 

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i have a m1a ss loaded i would prefer to have an 18" version instead. i would keep everything else the same except maybe add the smith coast guard muzzle brake at a later time. so which barrel would you guys recommend? i would like to be able to shoot 7.62 nato & still have the option of shooting .308. also is getting my barrel cut down, recrowned, & threaded an option?
Not really an option unless you go with a non m14 style muzzel attachment. A criterion barrel is your best option.
 

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Krieger 18.5 is not really an option they don't have any left overs from the last group buy. Criterion and SEi are the only options I know of. LRB has a criterion medium weight 18.5 inch made to there specs and I am not 100% sure but you may give Ted Brown a call he may have some in his shop.
 

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I have an LRB with an 18.5" Criterion, chrome lined. It is meant more as a "social" rifle, which is why I preferred the chrome lining. With my handloads using 150 gr Nosler BT's and IMR4895 it groups between .75" and 1.25" for 5 shots at 100 yards depending on how well I'm doing that day. Ball ammo, specifically Brit Radway Green, shoots into 3" at the same distance.

Personally, I like the way the 18.5" tube handles, especially when hunting. The Criterion is more than accurate enough for my purposes, and I would recommend it for any purpose other than match shooting where sub MOA accuracy is needed.
 

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I have a 2 part question...

What do you mean by...

1) "i would like to be able to shoot 7.62 nato & still have the option of shooting .308"....?

2) Why does changing to a 18.5 inch barrel matter in regards to question 1....?
 

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If it was me I'd keep intact the rifle I already owned, knowing it functions and shoots, and keep an eye out for another one with a shorter barrel. Scouts and SOCOMs, etc., pop up all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
im new to these rifles even though i have always liked them, so please bear with me as i am still learning. i didn't know if all m1a/m14 barrels were chambered the same and both 7.62 nato and .308 could be used interchangeably. as far as keeping this one and buying another im still kicking that around. i would like to thank you guys for your help.
 

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Jeepguy there is an awful lot of debate on the subject of 7.62 and .308. Almost to the point that the horse seems to have nine lives. There are a couple of variables that go into how you achive your final headspace. It depends on what type of barrel you use, be it a chrome lined as opposed to a chrome molly or stainless steel barrel. Without going into detail if yo uhave your rifle set up with a 1.632 headspace you will be good to go using milsurp 7.62 or .308.
 

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I did something similar with mine going from a medium weight 22" to a medium weight 18.5". Absolutely no regrets here. I'd say go with the Criterion medium 18.5" LRB offers. Same twist, better barrel and same contour (just shorter). Ask LRB if they have any that are not chrome lined and short chambered.
 

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I have the criterion 18.5" and I like it balances and handles well. One thing is: I had the smith ent. coastguard break on it and it was loud. It really annoyed the people around when I shot it. I since changed it to a direct connect smith vortex (sp) FS and GLFS and I like this set up better so do the "neighbors" at the range! standing to the sides of the coast guard break is brutal on the ears even with ear plugs in. However, it does work very well to reduce recoil and muzzle jump. just my $ 00.02!
 
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