What is a Billet and Why an airgun doesn’t use it

DAQ
Joined: June 20th, 2003, 4:39 am

August 23rd, 2005, 6:20 pm #1

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal and they’re not used in an airgun.

Airguns are made of finished metals; bar stock (round, square or rectangular) and tubing. All of which has been cold finished, or cold drawn, so as to have a good surface finish.

When molten metal is poured into an ingot mold, the metal is allowed to cool until it solidifies. While it is still hot and “plastic” it is rolled to shape. The rolling is just like using a rolling pin on biscuit dough. The roller presses down and smoothes the surface. On the hot ingot it is done from all sides to make a square or rectangular, in cross section, piece of metal with rounded corners, called a billet.

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal that has been roughly worked to shape and will go on to other finishing processes. The billet will be re-rolled while hot to further bring it to the desired finished size. This hot rolling has “scale”. The scale is the decarborized metal that the carbon has been burned out of. While the metal is red hot, its surface is in contact with the atmosphere, which burns the surface. To get a good surface on the metal the final processes are done cold. When done cold, there is no scale produced and the surface finish is better. But cold rolling takes more time to do because you have to use more passes, through the rolls, to size the metal. The rolls, used for cold rolling, have to be run at a much higher pressure to form the metal in the cold state and the rolls have to be maintained with a high polish, so as to leave a good finish on the metal. The cold finishing of the metal is the expensive part to do, but the bar stock produced has a good surface, is dimensionally accurate and, on square and rectangular stock, has square corners.

Billets, the unfinished metal bars, are used where the manufacturers don’t want to pay the extra money for the finishing of the metal because it would not add value to the finished product. For example: forgers use billets because every surface of the metal is reshaped in the forging process. A race car crankshaft can be machined out of a billet because the surface finish of the billet has nothing to do with the finished product, so why pay the extra money for a good surface finish? Custom aluminum wheels are made of billet because the finished product in no way benefits from starting with good surface finish metal. So why increase the cost of the finished product by wrongly specifying that a cold finished metal would be your working stock?

A breech maker tried to impress people by saying that the breech was made from a billet. The breech was made from bar stock and it’s a mistake to believe that making a breech from a roughly formed piece of metal would make a better breech. But that’s what people claiming to make things out of billets are telling you. When I have students in the shop, one of the things I insist on is that they learn “the language”, to know the names of things and their use. If one doesn’t, they’re going to use the wrong terms and “impress” people with how much they don’t know.

Other terms: Bloom, slab, sheet bar are similar to a billet in that they are semi-finished mill products of square or rectangular cross section, hot rolled from ingots, but not finished rolled so they have rounded corners. The difference between them is their cross section area and their intended use.
Quote
Share

Joined: June 15th, 2005, 10:31 am

August 23rd, 2005, 6:33 pm #2

and wondered. Guess it's just sales hype. Thanks!!
Quote
Share

TLU
Joined: January 8th, 2002, 3:15 pm

August 23rd, 2005, 6:35 pm #3

Thanks for the information/education. Dennis, I am really looking forward to hearing you announce (maybe a year from now?) that you will be taking orders for your big bore Browning Over/Under look-alike D.A.Q. Air rifle (between $1200.-$1500.) I missed your last list (I wanted a .50) and I absolutely don't want to miss this one. Thank you for your fine products and your good prices. I've enjoyed my .308 Exile very much.
Quote
Share

Joined: August 27th, 2004, 6:24 pm

August 23rd, 2005, 7:18 pm #4

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal and they’re not used in an airgun.

Airguns are made of finished metals; bar stock (round, square or rectangular) and tubing. All of which has been cold finished, or cold drawn, so as to have a good surface finish.

When molten metal is poured into an ingot mold, the metal is allowed to cool until it solidifies. While it is still hot and “plastic” it is rolled to shape. The rolling is just like using a rolling pin on biscuit dough. The roller presses down and smoothes the surface. On the hot ingot it is done from all sides to make a square or rectangular, in cross section, piece of metal with rounded corners, called a billet.

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal that has been roughly worked to shape and will go on to other finishing processes. The billet will be re-rolled while hot to further bring it to the desired finished size. This hot rolling has “scale”. The scale is the decarborized metal that the carbon has been burned out of. While the metal is red hot, its surface is in contact with the atmosphere, which burns the surface. To get a good surface on the metal the final processes are done cold. When done cold, there is no scale produced and the surface finish is better. But cold rolling takes more time to do because you have to use more passes, through the rolls, to size the metal. The rolls, used for cold rolling, have to be run at a much higher pressure to form the metal in the cold state and the rolls have to be maintained with a high polish, so as to leave a good finish on the metal. The cold finishing of the metal is the expensive part to do, but the bar stock produced has a good surface, is dimensionally accurate and, on square and rectangular stock, has square corners.

Billets, the unfinished metal bars, are used where the manufacturers don’t want to pay the extra money for the finishing of the metal because it would not add value to the finished product. For example: forgers use billets because every surface of the metal is reshaped in the forging process. A race car crankshaft can be machined out of a billet because the surface finish of the billet has nothing to do with the finished product, so why pay the extra money for a good surface finish? Custom aluminum wheels are made of billet because the finished product in no way benefits from starting with good surface finish metal. So why increase the cost of the finished product by wrongly specifying that a cold finished metal would be your working stock?

A breech maker tried to impress people by saying that the breech was made from a billet. The breech was made from bar stock and it’s a mistake to believe that making a breech from a roughly formed piece of metal would make a better breech. But that’s what people claiming to make things out of billets are telling you. When I have students in the shop, one of the things I insist on is that they learn “the language”, to know the names of things and their use. If one doesn’t, they’re going to use the wrong terms and “impress” people with how much they don’t know.

Other terms: Bloom, slab, sheet bar are similar to a billet in that they are semi-finished mill products of square or rectangular cross section, hot rolled from ingots, but not finished rolled so they have rounded corners. The difference between them is their cross section area and their intended use.
From what I can tell, all the manufactures machine the receiver out of one piece of steel, so I never cared if it was a billet or cold rolled bar stock.

No matter I'm get a CZ anyway. Here is their line:

The CZ 452 rifles are manufactured from steel billets not tubing or plastic, the barrels are hammer forged for accuracy and long life.
Quote
Share

Joined: July 2nd, 2005, 7:25 am

August 23rd, 2005, 8:16 pm #5

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal and they’re not used in an airgun.

Airguns are made of finished metals; bar stock (round, square or rectangular) and tubing. All of which has been cold finished, or cold drawn, so as to have a good surface finish.

When molten metal is poured into an ingot mold, the metal is allowed to cool until it solidifies. While it is still hot and “plastic” it is rolled to shape. The rolling is just like using a rolling pin on biscuit dough. The roller presses down and smoothes the surface. On the hot ingot it is done from all sides to make a square or rectangular, in cross section, piece of metal with rounded corners, called a billet.

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal that has been roughly worked to shape and will go on to other finishing processes. The billet will be re-rolled while hot to further bring it to the desired finished size. This hot rolling has “scale”. The scale is the decarborized metal that the carbon has been burned out of. While the metal is red hot, its surface is in contact with the atmosphere, which burns the surface. To get a good surface on the metal the final processes are done cold. When done cold, there is no scale produced and the surface finish is better. But cold rolling takes more time to do because you have to use more passes, through the rolls, to size the metal. The rolls, used for cold rolling, have to be run at a much higher pressure to form the metal in the cold state and the rolls have to be maintained with a high polish, so as to leave a good finish on the metal. The cold finishing of the metal is the expensive part to do, but the bar stock produced has a good surface, is dimensionally accurate and, on square and rectangular stock, has square corners.

Billets, the unfinished metal bars, are used where the manufacturers don’t want to pay the extra money for the finishing of the metal because it would not add value to the finished product. For example: forgers use billets because every surface of the metal is reshaped in the forging process. A race car crankshaft can be machined out of a billet because the surface finish of the billet has nothing to do with the finished product, so why pay the extra money for a good surface finish? Custom aluminum wheels are made of billet because the finished product in no way benefits from starting with good surface finish metal. So why increase the cost of the finished product by wrongly specifying that a cold finished metal would be your working stock?

A breech maker tried to impress people by saying that the breech was made from a billet. The breech was made from bar stock and it’s a mistake to believe that making a breech from a roughly formed piece of metal would make a better breech. But that’s what people claiming to make things out of billets are telling you. When I have students in the shop, one of the things I insist on is that they learn “the language”, to know the names of things and their use. If one doesn’t, they’re going to use the wrong terms and “impress” people with how much they don’t know.

Other terms: Bloom, slab, sheet bar are similar to a billet in that they are semi-finished mill products of square or rectangular cross section, hot rolled from ingots, but not finished rolled so they have rounded corners. The difference between them is their cross section area and their intended use.
These days for common folks,'billet' is generalized to mean forge billet. Made of stronger metal that has gone through some kind of hammer forging process into billet blanks close to the final form of the finish part.
Quote
Share

Joined: June 6th, 2002, 12:03 am

August 23rd, 2005, 8:38 pm #6

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal and they’re not used in an airgun.

Airguns are made of finished metals; bar stock (round, square or rectangular) and tubing. All of which has been cold finished, or cold drawn, so as to have a good surface finish.

When molten metal is poured into an ingot mold, the metal is allowed to cool until it solidifies. While it is still hot and “plastic” it is rolled to shape. The rolling is just like using a rolling pin on biscuit dough. The roller presses down and smoothes the surface. On the hot ingot it is done from all sides to make a square or rectangular, in cross section, piece of metal with rounded corners, called a billet.

A billet is a semi-finished piece of metal that has been roughly worked to shape and will go on to other finishing processes. The billet will be re-rolled while hot to further bring it to the desired finished size. This hot rolling has “scale”. The scale is the decarborized metal that the carbon has been burned out of. While the metal is red hot, its surface is in contact with the atmosphere, which burns the surface. To get a good surface on the metal the final processes are done cold. When done cold, there is no scale produced and the surface finish is better. But cold rolling takes more time to do because you have to use more passes, through the rolls, to size the metal. The rolls, used for cold rolling, have to be run at a much higher pressure to form the metal in the cold state and the rolls have to be maintained with a high polish, so as to leave a good finish on the metal. The cold finishing of the metal is the expensive part to do, but the bar stock produced has a good surface, is dimensionally accurate and, on square and rectangular stock, has square corners.

Billets, the unfinished metal bars, are used where the manufacturers don’t want to pay the extra money for the finishing of the metal because it would not add value to the finished product. For example: forgers use billets because every surface of the metal is reshaped in the forging process. A race car crankshaft can be machined out of a billet because the surface finish of the billet has nothing to do with the finished product, so why pay the extra money for a good surface finish? Custom aluminum wheels are made of billet because the finished product in no way benefits from starting with good surface finish metal. So why increase the cost of the finished product by wrongly specifying that a cold finished metal would be your working stock?

A breech maker tried to impress people by saying that the breech was made from a billet. The breech was made from bar stock and it’s a mistake to believe that making a breech from a roughly formed piece of metal would make a better breech. But that’s what people claiming to make things out of billets are telling you. When I have students in the shop, one of the things I insist on is that they learn “the language”, to know the names of things and their use. If one doesn’t, they’re going to use the wrong terms and “impress” people with how much they don’t know.

Other terms: Bloom, slab, sheet bar are similar to a billet in that they are semi-finished mill products of square or rectangular cross section, hot rolled from ingots, but not finished rolled so they have rounded corners. The difference between them is their cross section area and their intended use.
sometimes airgunning gets in the back burner for a little while due to other things (work, other hobbies, life, etc.).

Love the post!

Keep them coming Dennis.

Patrick

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Quote
Share

Joined: August 3rd, 2003, 3:55 pm

August 23rd, 2005, 8:39 pm #7

These days for common folks,'billet' is generalized to mean forge billet. Made of stronger metal that has gone through some kind of hammer forging process into billet blanks close to the final form of the finish part.
Rough forgings are the traditional way of making guns. It makes the strongest parts since all the molecules are arranged in the shape of the part.

Billet is as far as know as slab of metal that is cut from bar stock. But English is not my first language...?

CNC machinery have changed the way of manufacuring alot since we dont need so many fixtures and jigs anymore. We now can use "billets" (as in slabs of metal) more economically.
Quote
Share

Joined: August 3rd, 2003, 3:55 pm

August 23rd, 2005, 8:58 pm #8

sometimes airgunning gets in the back burner for a little while due to other things (work, other hobbies, life, etc.).

Love the post!

Keep them coming Dennis.

Patrick

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
http://www.metal-mart.com/Dictionary/dictletb.htm#I25
Quote
Share

DAQ
Joined: June 20th, 2003, 4:39 am

August 23rd, 2005, 9:01 pm #9

From what I can tell, all the manufactures machine the receiver out of one piece of steel, so I never cared if it was a billet or cold rolled bar stock.

No matter I'm get a CZ anyway. Here is their line:

The CZ 452 rifles are manufactured from steel billets not tubing or plastic, the barrels are hammer forged for accuracy and long life.
If they're going to hot work (forge) the receiver to its shape, there's no reason for them to use steel with a good surface finish, and pay the extra for that work to be done to the steel, when the forging process creates an entirely new surface on the steel.
Many rimfire bolt action rifles' receivers are machined out of steel tubing. Some semi-auto .22RF receivers are are plastic. As in Remington semi-auto .22RF the bolt actually works in the plastic stock and they have a stamped sheet metal cover to make it look like a receiver.
Quote
Share

Joined: October 25th, 2002, 3:46 pm

August 23rd, 2005, 10:01 pm #10

Rough forgings are the traditional way of making guns. It makes the strongest parts since all the molecules are arranged in the shape of the part.

Billet is as far as know as slab of metal that is cut from bar stock. But English is not my first language...?

CNC machinery have changed the way of manufacuring alot since we dont need so many fixtures and jigs anymore. We now can use "billets" (as in slabs of metal) more economically.
Who and when were forgeings used for firearms manufacture?
How about Ruger and the use of investment casting.
Dennis I think you are in a competitive mode regarding the use of the word billet. Tim calls his Benj/Sheridan levers 'Billet Levers' and they sell and have a reputaion as being solid which was the intention I bet.
Would you not consider your manufacturing from the billet? cut from raw steel rather than finishing only?
Walter...
Quote
Share