Various shooters often have different preferences. While some enjoy shorter barrels because they never want to compromise speed and versatility, some opt for a longer barrel to have better accuracy. But aside from the typical barrel length, what other qualities of the best AR-10 barrel should you look for?
This article will show you the best barrel options and an essential buying guide that will provide you with a more informed decision in buying an AR-10 barrel. So let’s dig right in.
Table of Contents
- 1 Top 5 Barrels for AR-10
- 2 Your Guide to Buying
- 3 Our Team’s Selection Process
- 4 FAQs
- 5 And Our #1 AR-10 Barrel is...
Top 5 Barrels for AR-10
1. Faxon Firearms
Why We Picked It:
Our team’s first impression on the Faxon Firearms’ Big Gunner Barrel is it has a good length for an AR-10 rifle. Its barrel length provided us a superior performance in a hunting game where we tested it. We tried to hunt deer with it, and we did have a more effective kill shot every time we fired our rifles.
This button-rifled barrel also features a medium-taper design from the barrel extension behind the proprietary gas block that reduces weight while maintaining the rifle’s optimal ruggedness, providing higher rates of fire. It is also corrosion-resistant and highly durable.
We also compared this barrel to the old factory replacement barrel that we used to have. We were surprised to see such a big difference when it came to the accuracy of our shots fired compared to the old factory barrel that our rifles came with. Our team also liked how this barrel was too easy to install, and it even works with various guns.
Who Should Use It:
We recommend this barrel to hunters who aim to land an effective kill shot. This barrel would also help hunters knock down a small or large animal because it provides a better shot placement.
The .308 WIN Big Gunner barrel of the Faxon Firearms is ideal for hunting, on duty, or competition performances. It features a medium-taper design behind the gas port/gas block that intends to reduce weight while maintaining the rifle’s optimal ruggedness, providing higher rates of fire. This barrel is constructed from 4150 QPQ. It also contains a salt bath nitride finish inside and out, making it more durable and resistant to corrosion.
2. BSF Barrels
Why We Picked It:
Next on our list is the BSF Barrel which is cased with a 416R Stainless steel match, roll-wrapped in carbon fiber barrel sleeve, and loaded under tension. The BSF barrels use a unique jacketing method rather than just wrapping the barrel in carbon fiber.
According to our research, this unique method traps heat and causes delamination. They also use a specially designed carbon fiber barrel to move at the exact expansion rate as the 416R stainless steel. We were impressed to see that this method made the barrel extremely lightweight. It also allowed our barrel to maintain superior stiffness and strength.
Who Should Use It: This barrel is ideal for hunting. If you are a shooter who loves to hunt for long periods, keeping a lightweight barrel as an added component for your AR-10 build is an ideal choice. This is also compatible with the DPMS style gas tubes of the DPMS platform.
The BSF Barrels use a unique method in keeping their AR-10 barrels lightweight and maintaining their superior stiffness and strength. It is cased with a high-grade stainless steel match, roll-wrapped in a carbon fiber sleeve to move at the same expansion rate as the steel. The carbon fiber barrels allow air to move around the barrel, preventing any delamination issues.
3. Rosco Manufacturing
Why We Picked It:
We picked the Rosco Manufacturing barrel because of its compatibility with short-barreled rifles. It could also be used for a pistol build, which made it even a more diverse option. The 10.5-inch bloodline barrel is also chambered for an M4 5.56 NATO.
It has a cool design and a highly durable nitride finish that made us more confident to use it in the shooting range. It is also constructed from 4150 CMV material, commonly used in heavy-fire applications. In addition, it has high carbon content steel, making it resilient to high-heat scenarios.
Who Should Use It:
This barrel is best used for short-barreled rifles and pistols. Whether for hunting, patrol duties, or self-defense, this barrel is an ideal choice.
The Rosco Manufacturing Bloodline Barrel is chambered for M4 5.56 NATO. It is also an ideal barrel for short-barreled rifles and pistol builds. Furthermore, it is constructed from a highly durable 4150 CMV material. This barrel for AR-10 rifle features a carbine rifle length gas system length and a twist rate of 1 – 7.
4. Criterion Barrels
Why We Picked It:
The Criterion Barrel features the best barrel length of 18 to 22 inches. We especially liked this premium barrel because it can perfectly kick itself into the clutch, making it easier to knock down targets even from long-range target shooting. It is also button-rifled and hand-lapped, resulting in a uniform bore and better shot accuracy.
Since it is ideal for long-distance shooting, this hybrid barrel is reasonably compatible with longer-range rounds like Creedmoor 6.5 ammo. When we tried it at the shooting range, we were surprised that our shots could reach even further. This hybrid barrel also maintained a flatter trajectory and a greater ballistic coefficient.
Who Should Use It:
If you are an AR-10 rifle lover who loves to challenge how far your maneuverable rifle and ammo could go, this high-quality barrel is for you. It is capable of long-range target shooting/hitting that provides a flat trajectory and better accuracy. Of course, you can always hit a deer from 600 yards up to 1000 yards with tighter shooting groups if you opt to.
The Criterion Barrels match grade 6.5 Creedmoor AR barrels. It also offers extreme accuracy and a flat trajectory, making your almost every shot count. As a result, this AR-10 is ideal for long-range shooting escapades. It is highly durable, corrosion-resistant, and features a salt bath nitride finish. They are also button rifled, and hand lapped, ensuring a consistent bore uniformity.
5. Trybe Defense
Why We Picked It:
The 7.5 Trybe Defense barrel chambered in 9mm features a beautifully thin profile. It looked pleasing to the eyes. We also liked how durable it felt when used during the long-range shooting practice we did. Since it features a black nitride finish and is milled from 4150 Chrome Moly Vanadium Steel, it didn’t surprise us how long-lasting this good barrel is.
Trybe Defense boasts their rigorous quality checks providing the highest of standards for all of their products. We were also impressed at how the company checked every headspace of their AR-10 barrels to ensure 100% compliance with SAAMI Specification.
Who Should Use It:
This AR-10 barrel is ideal for home defense, plinking, and hunting rifle for small games. If you are after a durable barrel, the Trybe Barrels are ultimately for you.
The Trybe Defense barrel is a 7.5-inch barrel chambered in 9mm. It features a beautifully thin profile and a highly durable black nitride finish. It is also milled from 4150 Chrome Moly Vanadium Steel. It also features a 1:10” twist. Each AR-10 barrel headspace is also 100% inspected to ensure compliance with SAAMI Specification. Lastly, this AR-10 barrel is air gauged after rifling and is held to .0002” concentricity of the bore.
Your Guide to Buying
In most cases, the price doesn’t matter much to a shopper if he intentionally wants to buy an essential component to upgrade his AR-10 rifle bit by bit. However, budget shoppers have set a ceiling price point that they might want to stick to. This way, they get exactly what they expect.
Therefore, they search for the highest quality and best performance they could afford. Our team suggests that whatever budget you intend to spend for your AR-10 barrel, it is always best to choose one that fits your standard rifle quality. Also, find an AR-10 barrel with the best durability it could offer.
The process of installing these best AR-10 barrels is also an essential factor that you need to consider when buying the best AR-10 barrel. Looking for a barrel for an AR-10 rifle that doesn’t require special tools or a gunsmith to install should be on your list.
If you can find barrels that are easy to install, like a fluted barrel, why should you pay extra cash for it? We have searched for some easy-to-attach barrels, so you can just choose from the list we have provided in this article.
For any gun part or component, having extreme durability that could withstand pressure and any weather conditions is a must. Therefore, we suggest that you search for the best AR-10 barrels made from steel or any high-quality materials that will last you long enough until you finally decide to change for a newer one.
To ensure high-quality durability, you have to search for a new barrel made of really tough stainless steel or chrome-moly steel. These options are highly durable and both rust and corrosion resistant, making the new barrel long-lasting.
Some of the best AR-10 barrels feature a nitride finish inside and out, which makes them more durable. As the barrel technology advanced, some reliable barrels even come with an additional rust-resistant coating.
We always recommend buying the best AR-10 barrels with durable materials to ensure a better performance in the shooting range.
Weight & Length
Typically, AR-10 barrels feature at least 18 to 22 inches in length. And if you are still starting, it is most likely to be recommended to get an 18-inch barrel for your AR-10, as it should be enough for starters like you. While you have different rifle-length gas systems to choose from, like the mid-length gas system, choosing according to your needs, rifle configuration, and intention is always suggested.
The length of your barrel will determine the speed, trajectory, and accuracy of your rifle regardless of the bullet weight. It will also affect the weight of the barrel. The longer the barrel is, the heavier it will become. Longer barrels for an AR-10 rifle may also reduce mobility, making it more difficult to carry the AR-10 weapon. Therefore, if you want to hunt for a longer time, having a shorter barrel would be a better choice for you.
It is also important to know the legal compliance of the best AR-10 barrels you are about to purchase. There may not be many states that restrict the usage of barrels on AR-10 rifles, but it is always better to be sure. Some states restrict semi-automatic rifles based on appearance and would not classify AR-10 rifles as assault weapons. In some states, owning an AR-10 is perfectly legal, though.
Resistance to Rust
Being durable doesn’t always mean it is rust-resistant. Some steel materials may make your barrel sturdy enough to withstand harsh recoil impulse and impacts. However, you have to ensure that the barrel has a special coating made to resist rust to make its life last longer.
We suggest looking for a fluted barrel or a regular barrel that comes with additional coatings, such as Duracoat, chrome-lining, Cerakote, or a nitride-resistant coated finish. These special coatings will not only make the barrel rust-resistant but also corrosion-resistant. It may not mean that it would make the barrel last forever. However, it could help preserve the prime condition of the barrel for a longer period.
Contour & Design
Contour and design don’t only exist for aesthetic purposes. They also affect the performance of your barrel in every meaningful way. For example, a heavier contoured barrel takes longer to heat up and slower to cool all the way off. It could also reduce recoil when shot. The design may also affect the comfort and ease of use of each barrel and its cartridge chamber.
The barrel’s twist rate is also something to look out for, as it greatly affects the barrel’s performance. AR-10 barrels usually come with a twist rate of 1:12, or sometimes even lower, such as 1:7 twist rate bullet rotation. If you use ammo with a standard 168-grain bullet, choosing a barre with a 1:12 twist rate is ideal. However, if you opt to use heavier bullets, you can go for barrels with 1:10 twist rates.
Short barrels blast harder and louder since it is closer to the rifle and closer to the shooter.
Therefore, you’ll need a barrel to reduce the recoil.
Consequently, you also need to look for barrels with a supreme recoil reduction feature if you want to hunt more accurately and have a greater muzzle velocity.
The reduction of recoil may affect the accuracy of the barrel. Therefore, finding the best barrel will definitely improve your shot’s accuracy significantly. Additionally, some barrels offer better accuracy when used in your AR-10 rifles.
Thus, if you aim to focus on this category, you better look for barrels like Faxon Firearms and Criterion Barrels. You may also try to find other options through legitimate hunting or shooting forums that typically share their experiences regarding various barrels.
Our Team’s Selection Process
Our team stands by a selection process to determine the best options we could offer our readers. We always seek to determine the overall performance of the barrels, so we always try them in the shooting range. We schedule a target practice/game or even a hunting game to check the performances of these barrels.
While we also try to research some of the best features of these barrels, we always think that it is better to try them to have the first-hand experience. Therefore, we check their qualities one by one and compare them to the qualities of the other options, such as added features, performance in the shooting range, contour, and accuracy.
Our team also likes diversity, so having a wider array of options for these barrels is always better. We recommend barrels that are compatible with various guns, and not only for the AR-10 rifles. We installed these barrels on various guns to check their compatibility with AR-10 rifles, AR-15, pistols, and any other durable weapon.
The product quality typically lies in the construction of materials used for each barrel. We also considered their special coatings, their ability to resist rust and corrosion.
We also considered the experiences of other gun owners since some barrels’ quality may or may deteriorate when used over time. We researched and reached out to other gun owners through legit forums that openly discuss the quality of these barrels to back up our claims.
Based on our practical experience in the shooting range, the best AR-10 barrel length is 22 inches. Although for small rounds used in your rifle, you can go lower at 20 inches in length. However, if you opt to use magnums, 24 inches is relatively ideal to choose. You can use the same length of the barrel for some weapons.
The effective range of an AR-10 rifle is about 600 yards, just as arguably powerful as the AR-15 rifle. However, this range can shoot tighter groups up to 1000 yards if you use the best barrel for your AR-10 rifle. Thus, our group claims that AR-10 rifles are somewhat better options if you want to shoot targets at longer distances.
Yes, a longer gun barrel improves accuracy. The theoretical accuracy of handguns and rifles is driven by rifling, barrel length, and bullet mass. Thus one can make more accurate shots because the two aligning marks are further, and thus in order to seem aligned to the eye, they have to be “more aligned” than with a shorter barrel. 
And Our #1 AR-10 Barrel is...
The #1 AR-10 barrel is the Faxon Firearms’ Barrel based on the practice tests and our group selection process. This button-rifled barrel provided us with superior performance in a deer hunting game. This multi-purpose barrel also gave us an effective kill shot every time we fired our rifles.
It also provided us optimal ruggedness and higher rates of fire. Furthermore, it provided us with better accuracy amidst being a lightweight barrel option. It is also compatible with most weapons/guns. Lastly, this versatile barrel has a highly durable material and a special coating that makes it corrosion and rust-resistant.
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