January 4th, 2010

Monitor Barrel Heat with Pen-Sized IR Thermometer

You never want to run the barrel of a precision rifle too hot. Excessive barrel heat kills accuracy, increases copper fouling, and can cause rapid barrel throat wear. Over the years people have devised various means to cool their barrels — from electric fans to dunking in tubs of ice water.

But how do you know if your barrel is too hot? Consider a “non-contact” thermometer that reads your barrel’s “infrared signature”. The $20.00 Kintrex pocket-sized, non-contact IR thermometer is ideal for shooters at the range or in the prairie dog fields.

Just 3.2″ long, and weighing a mere 1.3 ounces, the waterproof Kintrex IRT0401 (IP67) is small enough to carry in your pocket, and will easily stow in any range bag/box. The unit measures from -67 to 428 °F (-55 to 220 °C). Given the low cost and compact size, we highly recommend you get one of these units.

KINTREX IRT0401 Compact Waterproof (IP67) Infrared Thermometer

Kintrex is a respected manufacturer that also makes larger hand-held IR thermometers for industrial and shop applications. Priced at just $19.95 on Amazon.com, the tiny Kintrex is one new gadget that every serious shooter should have. Given the cost of replacing barrels these days, can you afford NOT to have a good temp gauge for your match or varmint barrel?

If you have more room in your range kit, and want a larger unit with longer battery life for daily shop duty, we recommend the Kintrex IRT0421. A top-selling tool, this $47.08 unit has a full-sized pistol grip and features laser targeting for ultra-precise temp-gauging. It records temps from -76 °F all the way up to 932 °F (-60 to 500 °C). Black & Decker also offers the versatile TLD100 IR thermometer, which can be used for thermal leak detection in the home as well.

KINTREX IRT0421 Non-Contact IR Thermometer with Laser Targeting Black & Decker TLD100 IR Thermometer and Thermal Leak Detector

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