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Thread: New Israeli Made (IWI?) Barrel Quality?

  1. #11


    Update Post:

    Today 1-24-2018 I received a response to my follow up email sent yesterday.

    It was professional enough...

    ****begin paste****
    Thank you for your email. I apologize for the late response as I just received your email from one of my colleagues. I took a look at your forum post and I am not sure what went wrong with the barrel and why it's in such a poor condition. I would be disappointed as well to receive that! We'd be happy to let you return that barrel. If you would like an exchange or a refund we can definitely do both at this point, whichever you'd prefer. I would have to inspect our other barrels for their condition if you would like an exchange. As of yet we haven't had anyone who had such an issue with the condition and poor fitment with these Israeli barrels. I'll also email you with a return shipping label so you can mail back the barrel. Please let me know which option you'd like to go for in terms of a refund or exchange. Again I apologize for this situation, but we're happy to get this straightened out for you. I look forward to your response.
    ****end paste****

    I am going to try an exchange and see if this was isolated.

    My concern really isn't the cosmetics, but the fact that it drags severely on my bolt... sometimes enough to lock up the slide requiring removal of the barrel from the frame to get the bolt out of the barrel breech.

    It is obvious that there is pretty radical change in the locking end of these new Israeli barrels... I am wondering if my OLD Mk XIX .357 bolts are at fault... maybe this new design works fine with modern .357 bolts. Surely they wouldn't test/design these new barrels with 20 year old Mk XIX Bolts... maybe something changed just a tiny bit. It leaves extreme scrape marks on my bolts, as pictured below...

    These photo's don't show the "3D-ness of these gouges in the bolt... but I circled the gouges in red. This seems to be the source of the extreme bolt drag.

    I sure hope this isn't something to do with older Mk XIX Bolts... Maybe I can get a new barrel and find out.

    I'll keep you posted.


  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Near the Gila Mountains in SW AZ.


    Thank you for the update.
    [<a href= target=_blank></a>

  3. #13



    Well, today (Monday, 2-12-2018) I received the replacement barrel from Magnum Research. Cosmetically it looks fine... no issues like the other barrel. Functionally, it is the same however... non.

    Most of the time, if you drop the slide, the bolt gets a couple hundred thousandths into the barrel and jams/seizes/locks up etc. I am usually able to force the slide backward hard enough to get the bolt free of the barrel, but sometimes you must pull the barrel from the frame to free it.

    It will not load a round from a magazine... at all. It isn't the round hanging either, because after the bolt hangs up in the front of the barrel, you can hear the round slide in and out of the chamber.

    For the curious, here is how I quick checked the issue.
    First, I pulled the barrel and slide off, and I can easily, cleanly push the barrel into battery, with no frame involved.
    Second, I reassembled the gun without the gas piston and recoil springs and the bolt still binds up completely.
    Third, I pulled the bolt and there is no slide to barrel contact, so that isn't it.
    Fourth, I pulled the extractor and replaced the bolt, and it still binds exactly the same.

    I can see where a couple of the barrel lugs are gouging my bolt, so I know there is a LOT of contact...

    I could send it back for a refund... but then I wouldn't be me. I am going to attempt to fix it... here is why.
    1. Mk XIX .357 Magnum 10" barrels are hard to find at most any price.
    2. Quality in other areas... like the gas cylinder diameter (as with all two part barrels I have, it is perfect and exactly the same diameter as my 1993 Israeli made .50AE, so no custom gas piston needed for this barrel.), the barrel fits both of my frames to perfection, and last near perfect chamber... the polish is far better than my US made current production barrels in all three calibers. Nothing to improve there.
    3. I believe the problem is simply fit, and nothing fundamentally wrong with the barrel.

    I still don't get why the design is SO different from all my other barrels, US or Israeli, ancient or modern... why is this one barrel different? WHY change from what works... the irony that the very area that is changed seems to be the problem area.

    Just look at this!

    (Left to right, top row... 10" .44 Mag, 10" .357 Mag (new), 6" .357 Mag, bottom row... 10" .41 Mag[MkVII], 10" .50AE)

    The point of this picture is the lug depth variation on this one barrel... especially compared to the 6" .357 to the immediate right of the problem barrel.

    The first step to repair/fitting will be to clean a bolt and the barrel thoroughly, get some DyKem on them both and see where they are hitting/binding, and see where to go from there.

    As this seems to be a non-isolated issue, I will post what I learn here just in case someone with the same issue has a desire to fit the barrel themselves, it might help.

    The good part is that I have other working .357 Magnum barrels to compare dimensions to.


  4. #14


    Update: Resolution...

    As I had suspected a little, and hoped a little, the issue required only simple fitting.

    I cleaned the barrel and bolt, applied DyKem and re-assembled the gun... I cycled the slide and let it jam up good a couple of times. I then removed the bolt from the slide and was presented with only two contact points, but they were substantial. A close look with a magnifier showed tiny metal shavings on the bolt. These shavings were left there by the barrel lug tips, and there is almost no gouging or damage to the bolt. The barrel material is a good bit softer than the bolt, so all is ok.

    An important note... this post is referencing the replacement barrel. In the pictures above, of the bolt, you can see two places where the FIRST barrel gouged/scraped the barrel lugs... the new barrel hit EXACTLY the same. This could mean that other barrels from this batch might only need this tiny bit of fitting to work perfectly. This entire process took about an hour... except for pouring ammo through it for testing after the first and only adjustment... that took another hour.

    In the image above, you can deduct which lugs were trimmed and re-polished... but here is an image marking where I removed a small amount of material.

    Basically I rounded these sharp corners with a diamond bit, then polished them smooth. I didn't remove much material really... for reference I maybe made roughly a .020 radius on the marked corners. This made 100% clearance to the bolt.

    One thing I did that I do on all my barrels that this barrel did need... I used a round brush in a Dremel tool to reach behind the barrels locking lugs and polished the inside of them. They needed it. This would probably correct after a good number of rounds is run through the gun, but why not just polish them? I do this to almost all my new barrels, but the used barrels (with the exception of one) don't seem to need it.

    So I took it outside, did a 9+1 and slowly fired the rounds (Winchester Super-X)... then I put 100 rounds of Aguilla through it. Flawless... and you can not limp-wrist this barrel... and I have not custom fit a gas piston for this barrel, as it didn't need it. The gas cylinder is absolutely perfect in dimension to my other Israeli made barrels.
    While 110 rounds isn't a thorough test by any means, I am confident all is well with this barrel.

    In with the Devils Advocate...
    I am happy right now that my barrel was easy to repair. I am NOT happy about paying $500 for a barrel that first was cosmetically unacceptable, and not functional as well. Magnum Research DID apologize and took full responsibility for the barrel and offered a refund or replacement at my discretion. They even tested the replacement barrel for fit on a gun... and it didn't work... but I asked for the barrel anyway, as I was confident I could fix it.

    Now I have what is probably the final barrel for my collection and it seems to work better than the American, current production barrels also.

    So if you get one of these 10" .357 barrels and have bolt jamming issues, and don't want to sent your gun back, it might be as easy to fix as mine was... did I mention I couldn't limp wrist this barrel at all? Excellent. I will be putting some rounds through this barrel in the next few weeks, and will report back if any issues come up with function.


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