Right or Left Hand Rifling?

Discussion in 'XDTalk Chatter Box' started by Delija, Jul 15, 2005.

  1. Delija

    Delija XDTalk 4K Member

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    Last night I noticed that my XD has a right hand twist in it's rifling and my SA 1911 has a left hand twist.

    I can't remember when or where I heard or read (or dreamed) that one or the other (probably the 1911, since Browning seemed to have a reason for everything) had a purpose having to do with the torque of a gun as a bullet goes through the rifling. Most people are right handed, and IIRC, the rifling was designed to go (left? right?) to use the torque to help a shooter keep the gun straight.

    If this is so, then why wouldn't all handguns have the rifling going in the same direction? Or why not have barrels with right or left rifling as an option so right handed and left handed shooters can both take advantage of this torque factor (if it indeed really exists)?

    Anyone know anything about this?

    Could it be that in Croatia there are more left handed people? Or maybe Browning himself was left handed?

    Did I dream this? Or has anyone else ever heard anything like this?

    Peace,
    D.
     
  2. So Flo

    So Flo XDTalk 20K Member Founding Member

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    D, you are thinking WAY to hard on the details of your hobby! :lol:
    Actually, I had never noticed...or really even thought about that. Now I am curious as well.
    If anyone will have some info on this...it will be someone from this crazy clan.
     
  3. galway

    galway XDTalk 100 Member

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    ranks right up there with the question of why some cars have the gas cap on the drivers side and some on the passenger side.

    Some old cars have it in the middle, but I don't think any new cars are that way.
     
  4. one-eyed-fatman

    one-eyed-fatman XDTalk 10K Member

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    And on the 56 chevy you have to open the left tail light to fill er up. Did I answer anyones question?
     
  5. agalindo

    agalindo XDTalk 15K Member Founding Member

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    Found this on the web. Hey, sounds good.


    1. Newtons laws of physics hold within the firearms community. Thus, if a
    bullet is caused to spin either by a lefthand or righthand twist rifled
    barrel, it does so because there is an exact same force (less frictional
    losses) exerted on the rest of the rifle. Hence, as the bullet accelrates to
    (say) the right along a rifled barrel, the rifle itself is is accelerated to
    the left. The rifle wights more than the bullet, so the degree of
    acceleration is proportional to the bullet/rifle weight ratio as a function of
    the exit velocity of the projectile from the rifle muzzle.

    2. From the 1850's onwards the British tended to have an empire where
    rifled sporting firearms came into widespread use in India and Africa, and
    said empire was populated by large/dangerous animals, in turn requiring large
    bore / high energy projectiles to safely dispatch. Shooting large bore
    projectiles has the downside that said projectiles tend to pound the user.
    The larger the rifle bore, the larger the energy (in general terms) and hence
    the larger the energy able to be transmitted either left or right by the stock
    .... into the users cheek.

    3. Here is the crux of the topic. By choosing to rifle the bore either
    with right hand twist or left hand twist rifling, the designer can choose to
    have the rifle stock twist into the shooters face or twist away from their
    face. By convention, the British chose to have the rifling of their large
    bore rifles cause the stock (remember Mr Newtons laws here) to move away from
    the shooters face, rather than twist into their cheekbones. The recoil energy
    transmitted to the users shoulder remains the same in both cases.
    Interestingly, many American makers at the turn of the century made barrels
    with a twist opposite to the "standard" British pattern, thereby causing their
    customers to directly experiece a triumph of fashion over physics.

    4. For an interesting demonstration of the abovee, obtain two identical
    rilfes, preferably with high combs for scope mounts ... one with left hand
    rifling, one with left hand rifling. Obtain a very solid cheek weld and fire
    the same ammunition in both rifles. One rifle will twist into your cheek, one
    will twist away from your cheek. You will immediately be able to tell which
    rifling is which, as one of the rifles will smash into your cheek while the
    other will not disturb you at all. The author had the opportunity to observe
    this at first hand some 25 years ago, a lesson not easily forgotton in heavy
    recoilng rifles.
     
  6. Delija

    Delija XDTalk 4K Member

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    Right on all counts. Thinking way too hard about something that seems to be too small a detail to even consider, and yup, someone in this "crazy clan" was able to dig up information about this torque deal. Thanks "agalindo"!!!

    Yeah, they were very cool. I thought it was the '57, but I'll defer to you on that. Maybe it was both? (and no..didn't answer any questions, but always interesting to get your input whether on topic or off).

    :D

    Peace,
    D.
     
  7. Joseph Humphrey

    Joseph Humphrey XDTalk Newbie

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    So now what would i be able to judge with 2 rifles of the same caliber, and the SAME RIFLING? wouldn't they react IDENTICALLY?
     

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