OT: Question About Revolver Barrels

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The gun groups have ignored this question, probably because it's so stupid, but it's something that has always bugged me, so I ask you guys because of the wealth of knowledge here.
Most revolver barrels have bullet-shaped grooves in their outer surface. Do these have a function? To make the barrel lighter, perhaps? Or is it merely a traditional "decoration" that persists? Thanks
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The outer surface? The part you see, as opposed to the inside surface? I've never seen bullet-shaped grooves on either one. Are you referring to the rifling? The fine grooves machined on the inside in a slight spiral pattern?
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Example here:
http://www.fluency.paintedtarget.org/df/imgs/wpn_38revolver.jpg

He clearly said "outer surface."
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Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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He also said "barrels", but based on the picture you provided, which is typical of so many revolvers, he meant "cylinders".
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There are often grooves in the cylinder, yes, not the barrel. They are they mainly for aesthetics and to save a little bit of weight. It also makes it a bit easier to turn the cylinder by hand to check for loaded chambers (less useful on a swing-out cylinder, more useful on a gate loader).
I have seen a few smooth-walled cylinders, though they are rare.
There are also a couple of neat old revolvers that use a Z-channel in the cylinder that actually causes the cylinder to turn when a lug underneath moves forward and back as the trigger is pulled.
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On Wed, 04 Apr 2007 13:24:19 GMT, "JoeSpareBedroom"

The main advantage is loading in the dark. If you can't see you can manually position the cartridge by feel.
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I'd say "some" rather than "most" -- neither of the two revolvers I own has them, but I understand what you're talking about. As far as I know, it's purely decorative.
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Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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No, it is to lose weight. Its called fluting.
Searcher
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On Wed, 04 Apr 2007 13:25:45 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

Do you mean in the barrel, or in the cylinder?
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Think we've all figured out why the gun groups ignored him ;) Frank
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thats fluting,its supposed to make it stronger by giving it more surface area.
http://www.minibite.com/america/malone.htm
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net wrote in 3258.bay.webtv.net:

Gun BARRELS are fluted to give more rigidity with less weight,cylinders are fluted to reduce overall weight but not reduce strength. Handguns chambering the most powerful cartridges usually don't have fluting;they want maximum strength(some only chamber 5 rounds,too),older guns with poorer metallurgy used unfluted cylinders.
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Jim Yanik
jyanik
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So far, your reply best matches what I've been taught. However,...
My S&W Airweight is a five shot, .38., and my S&W .357 in stainless steel both have fluted cylinders. Of course, there are far more powerful handgun calibers.
I realize the fluting geometry differs between barrels and cylinders; but, if fluting makes a barrel more rigid, wouldn't it also make a cylinder stronger?
Fluted barrels dissipate heat better, by virtue of increased surface area. That's a great benefit, but I don't understand the logic of making a barrel lighter.
My AR-10T, .308, is very heavy, but I consider that a major plus.
________________________ A day without recoil is like a day without sunshine!
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Jack wrote:

Do you mean the revolver's CYLINDER? Barrels don't have grooves on their outer surfaces.
If you mean the FLUTING on a revolver CYLINDER, they serve two purposes: Reduces weight and strengthens the cylinder (yes, a fluted cylinder is stronger than a solid one, just like a hollow cylinder is stronger than a solid cylinder).
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wrote:

I was thinking the fluting on the cylinder helped disperse gases? Thinking gets me trouble, so I try to avoid it (G). -- Oren
"The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!"
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I just saw the picture. The cylinder is top dead center. The flute at the very top and looking from a top view you will see a flute on the other side.
Ever see lead fragments on the cylinder end, adjacent the barrel? Lead and gases can disperse; out and away from the shooter.
IMHO.
-- Oren
"The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!"
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Huh? Some barrels are grooved on the outer surfaces, whether or not you call it grooves or fluting. Hollow cylinder vs. solid cylinder? Isn't a solid cylinder a rod?
Steve
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This is the longest guessing game I've seen around here in a while. Maybe the OP would like to google for a photo of EXACTLY what he thinks he's seen.
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Where can you go from a post that includes such information as:

?
Steve
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wrote

I think he wanted to discuss paint brushes. :-)
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