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May 9th, 2012

Composite Barrel Technology from Teludyne Tech Industries

straightjacket teludyne composite barrelTeludyne Tech Industries manufactures a unique sleeved barrel system which, Teludyne claims, offers significant advantages over conventional steel barrels. Teludyne’s StraightJacket® Barrel System features a three-part composite construction. In the center is a conventional, relatively thin-contour steel barrel. Around that is fitted a 1.25″-diameter metal sleeve (shroud) running from action to muzzle. In the “gap” between the inner steel barrel and the outer sleeve, Teludyne pumps in a proprietary media. This lightweight fill material provides rigidity with reduced weight, and it also helps to transfer heat away from the inner barrel tube. The outer sleeve can be aluminum, carbon steel, stainless steel, or titanium — as the customer specifies. (Titanium offers an impressive combination of strength, light weight, and corrosion resistance).

straightjacket teludyne composite barrel

Teludyne claims that a composite StraightJacket barrel is as stiff as an equivalent-diameter large-contour steel barrel, but much lighter in weight. Teludyne declares: “By pressure-fitting our thin-walled machine tubing onto your barrel and then filling the void with our proprietary media creating a new monolithic structure, we retain the necessary flexibility but add the accuracy-enhancing rigidity.”

straightjacket teludyne composite barrel

The StraightJacket system has been around for a few years, and the U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) has been testing Teludyne barrel prototypes on a variety of platforms. There have been some promising tests that show improved accuracy over long strings of fire. This has been attributed to enhanced barrel cooling. Teludyne also claims StraightJacket barrels are more accurate than conventional barrels — at least conventional factory-grade barrels. That may be a stretch. However there is some hard evidence that a composite barrel can maintain good accuracy for more shots because the composite design sheds heat better.

straightjacket teludyne composite barrelYou can read more about StraightJacket barrels in the GunsAmerica Blog. Testers for GunsAmerica saw improved accuracy in Savage and Sako .30-06 rifles which were retro-fitted with composite barrels. With StraightJacket barrels installed, Both rifles fired impressive 5-shot groups at 500 yards: “Target after target … came back on both rifles with both guns shooting into an inch to an inch and a half at 500 yards, and it didn’t seem to matter how many rounds of standard Hornady [ammo] we put through the guns. In total, [the tester] shot 160 rounds through two guns … most at 500 yards in light to no wind on a 90° Florida day.” If those results can be believed, Teludyne may be on to something. Groups in the 1.5″ range at 500 yards are competitive with quality benchrest rigs, yet the test rifles were “box-stock” except for the composite barrels.

Fitting a StraightJacket Barrel to your Rifle
Teludyne StraightJacket barrels can be fitted to most common bolt-action rifles along with AK series rifles. Also dedicated complete uppers are offered for AR platform rifles. Send your gun to Teludyne in South Carolina and Teludyne will install the composite barrel and ship your rifle back to you about four weeks later. Centerfire bolt-action prices start at $649.00 for steel or aluminum outer sleeves. Rimfire installations cost $699.00. Titanium-shrouded barrel systems are $799.00 installed. These prices include a removable, threaded muzzle brake.

StraightJacket Barrels for Biathletes
Our friends Lanny and Tracy Barnes, Team USA Biathletes, have used Teludyne composite barrels successfully in international competition. The ‘Twin Biathletes’ have endorsed the product: “We have had outstanding groups [with the StraightJacket Barrel System] and it didn’t seem like the cold had an effect on them at all. Our first races were in Canada where it was -15 to -25 degrees Fahrenheit. While everyone else’s groups seem to spread open off of the paper, we were laying the shots down right on top of each other. After the races Tracy flew right over to Italy and the race officials were really impressed with how it shot. Your Straightjackets are really turning heads. We are excited to make history this winter and in the next Olympics in 2014. Thanks — Tracy and Lanny Barnes.” This Editor talked with Lanny at SHOT Show and she confirmed that the barrel really seems to work for her discipline. She called it her “secret weapon”. The composite barrel saves weight (over a similar-diameter all-steel barrel), and it seems to be less affected by hot/cold cycles encountered during biathlon events.

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April 26th, 2012

With Open Class Win, Butler Secures First Multigun “Triple Crown”

Our friend Taran Butler recorded a major accomplishment at the 2012 USPSA MultiGun Nationals held April 11-15 in Las Vegas, NV. By winning the 2012 Open Class title, Taran became the first person in history to have won all three USPSA MultiGun divisions: Open, Tactical, and Limited. You can only shoot one division per year at the Nationals, so it’s impossible to hold all three class titles simultaneously. But no other USPSA shooters have won all three class titles over the course of their shooting careers. Not even “immotals” Jerry Miculek or Mike Voight, both multi-time Open-Class winners, have captured all three class championships. Before his Open Class win this year, Butler had previously captured the Tactical Division title four times, and he won the Limited Division back in 2003.

Taran Butler USPSA

Taran observed: “This has now become the biggest achievement in my shooting career, to finally be the first person in history to win all three divisions of the USPSA MultiGun Championships. I owe thanks to God, my sponsors, and awesome friends.”

Taran Butler USPSA

Watch Taran Butler in Action
The video below shows Taran accepting a trophy for his 2012 USPSA Open Class victory. Then, starting at the 0:46 mark, you can watch Taran run stages at the recent Nationals. You can see Taran used all three guns: pistol, semi-auto carbine, and shotgun.

In Las Vegas, Taran used the same .223 Rem AR Carbine he shoots in Tactical Division — however he added a second optic (for close targets) when running the gun in Open class. This way he can just tilt the rifle to switch magnification levels to suit the target distance. Taran explains: “Here’s the rifle I used to win the 2012 Open Class Nationals. It’s a custom AR that TTI built with parts from Vltor, LaRue, PRI, Surefire, Noveske, Trijicon, and JP. Its called the Taran Tactical Innovations 17″ Signature Series Rifle aka TTI-17SS. The optics I use are the Trijicon TR24R 1-4 power and the RMR. This is by far the fastest optic setup on the planet.”

Taran Butler AR Multi-gun

The pistol Taran used was an Infinity IMM with comp, shooting the standard 9mm Parabellum round. In the shotgun stages in Las Vegas, Taran used a mag-fed shotgun. The shotgun’s huge external magazines (two are sandwiched together) allow long strings with fewer reloads. However, Taran did suffer a major shotgun jam in one stage that cost him 18 seconds (watch video at 4:12 – 4:30). Amazingly, Taran shot a near perfect match after that to win the Open Title.

Overcoming Mistakes — And Staying Calm — Was Key to Victory
According to Taran, the shotgun jam marked a turning point in his match: “To win at this level, you can’t give up when disaster strikes — as it did with my shotgun in Stage 5. But I kept my cool and stayed focused. After that I really shot the match about the best I could and I didn’t try to rush, which can cause more problem. A lot of shooters, when they encounter a big problem, they get discouraged and just give up. Or, they try to shoot really fast to make up time, and then they usually make even bigger mistakes.”

USPSA MultiGun Class Basics:

  • Open Class: “Anything goes” in the Open Class. Rifles may have multiple sighting systems including any kind of optics. Pistols may be fitted with comps, optical sights, and very large extended magazines.
  • Tactical Class: This is the most popular USPSA MultiGun class currently. Rifles may have ONE (1) optic, plus back-up irons. Pistols are usually tweaked factory guns with upgraded iron sights and triggers. However muzzle brakes, comps, and Red dot or other optics are not allowed on the pistols. Taran says: “The Tactical Division is #1 in attendance. The hardware is similar to what actual operators would use — ARs with a single optic, and normal-looking pistols with conventional sights.”
  • Limited Class: The Limited Class restricts rifles and pistols to iron sights (or a non-magnified red dot on the rifle only). This class has seen declining participation in recent years.
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