The .224 Valkyrie is an extraordinary and exciting new cartridge designed that can compete directly with larger, longer-range calibers like the 6.5 Creedmoor. The .224 may be a great round but it’s going to need a great barrel to really stand up to its name.
Luckily, we compiled the best .224 Valkyrie barrels in the market so you can save time from choosing from a plethora of products available. Are you ready to upgrade the performance of your .224 Valkyrie chambered AR? Then, let’s start.
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The .224 Valkyrie
The .224 Valkyrie is a solid choice for long-range shooting. This 5.6x41mm round is a relatively new alternative to .223 ammunition and has a shorter case that holds more powder and accommodates longer, heavier bullets than a typical .223.
The .224 Valkyrie has a special place amongst the multitube of AR-15 Cartridges that have come out over the years. Remington claims the .224 Valkyrie can remain supersonic at over 1,300 yards all while producing hardly any recoil. So you can hit the target and take rapid follow-up shots at extreme distances.
Advantages of the .224 Valkyrie
The .224 Valkyrie was introduced by the Federal Ammunition in 2017 and quickly caught the attention of long-range target rifle shooters. It was the first MSR 15 cartridge that remained supersonic well over 1300 yards. It had 50% less recoil than the 6.5 Creedmoor and outperformed the .223 Remington and .22 Nolster in ballistics and accuracy by large margins.
All this power and performance are packed in a cartridge with similar dimensions to the 5.56 NATO and 6.8 SPC making the .224 Valkyrie the perfect cartridge for maximizing performance and range on smaller AR platforms.
If you want to know more about the .224 Valkyrie, we wrote an in-depth article about this new, highly capable AR-15 Round.
How Long Should My Barrel Last?
Once you fire a round through your new barrel, it starts to erode the barrel from the inside and will continue to do so until the entire barrel is wrung out. A wrung our barrel won’t be able to stabilize bullets anymore translating to keyholing on your target as well as terrible accuracy and performance.
On normal barrels, you should begin to expect a slide in barrel performance after 2,000 – 5,000 rounds when using high powered. Of course, if you use heavier barrels, you can expect them to last a little longer. This is because they’re able to dissipate heat better than normal rifle barrels. You can also use high-speed stainless steel barrels if you want to get the most lifespan out of your barrel.
A chrome or nitrided inner barrel will also net you around 10,000-20,000 rounds before needing replacement. The reason why this is usually the military’s barrel of choice for their weapons. However, the best way to prolong the lifespan of any barrel is by simply conducting proper maintenance. For instance, cleaning out the brass, lead spall, and any corrosive fouling after using your rifle.
So, if you want a barrel that will last a long time, search for stainless, nitrided, or chrome-lined options. If you decide to go with a lower-cost barrel, be sure to replace it after 5K rounds if you want to keep your accuracy. Keep your barrel clean and well-protected to ensure that you get the most out of your investment.
Consider the length of the barrel before making a final decision. They typically measure between 18 and 20 inches in length. A rifle’s bullet velocity tends to increase linearly with barrel length. If you want to use your .224 Valkyrie rifle for precision shooting and long-distance hunting, you should opt for a barrel length of at least 20 inches. But if you’re going to be hunting in dense bush or forests with your rifle, an 18-inch barrel will suffice.
When it comes to increasing both accuracy and velocity, a 24-inch barrel is the way to go. Also, that’s a really common length to go with. When purchasing without doing any study, you may wind up with a shorter barrel.
Barrel weight is often one of the more overlooked factors when choosing a rifle barrel. A heavy barrel will be difficult to maneuver with, especially in close quarters. Also, it can easily fatigue you. However, the heavier weight will give you a more stable rifle. It can also help you handle recoil better, dissipate heat faster. Plus, it lasts longer than a lighter barrel.
When looking for the best .224 Valkyrie barrels, try to find ones that are built out of any of these four types of steel; 4140 hardened steel, 4150 steel, 416 Stainless Steel, and 416R Stainless steel.
The 4140/4150 steel types are chromium-molybdenum-vanadium alloys that have amazing strength and durability compared to their weight making them great options for barrel constructions. If you’re looking for a tougher barrel, 4150 steel is harder than 4140. It is the barrel of choice for most law enforcement and military personnel in the US.
When it comes to stainless steel options, the 416 and 416R are great options especially if you live in more humid types of weather like Florida for instance. 416/R stainless steel offers great resistance against rust and corrosion and is harder than both 4140 and 4150 steel. The only difference between the 416 and the 416R is its temperature resistance with the 416R fairing a lot better in snow and below-freezing temperatures than the 416.
The shape and profile of the barrel have a significant impact on both performance and weight. The increased size on heavy contour barrels provides quicker heat dispersion and dissipation and also improves accuracy and reduces barrel see-sawing.
Without going into too much detail, there are three barrel contour profiles you need to be aware of when shopping around for AR-15 rifles. There are the thinner pencil barrels. They are cheap but less durable and typically underperform when it comes to bursts or extended shooting. Then there are SOCOM barrels which provide a medium contour and good shooting durability without becoming too cumbersome to maneuver with. There are also the Government barrels. These have a lot of meat and durability and possess heavy contouring but are incredibly heavy.
Twist is measured by how many inches it takes the bullet to complete one full revolution as it leaves the barrel. For example, a 1:10 twist indicates that it takes a bullet 10 inches to spin entirely at that pace. A lower number indicates a tighter twist, while a larger number indicates a looser or longer twist.
If you’re planning to mostly load 180-230 grain cartridges then a 1:8 twist rate will work well for your build. However, if you intend to use high-powered rounds above 230 grains or longer bullets, then I suggest getting a 1:7 twist rate barrel instead. 1:7 twist ratio barrels will work better at stabilizing these heavier rounds for better accuracy at longer ranges. Both these twist ratios are fairly common for .224 Valkyrie barrels.
If you don’t intend on shooting these heavy grain rounds (80-130 grain), then you should go for a 1:10 or 1:12 twist ratio instead. Both these barrel types will typically come cheaper than the 1:7 and 1:8 variations. However, they won’t work too well should you decide to use a heavier bullet.
Best .224 Valkyrie Barrels for 2022
Brownells AR-15 Barrels .224 Valkyrie Stainless Steel
If you’re shopping around for an affordable yet solid barrel option for your AR build, then consider getting the Brownells AR-15 Barrels .224 Valkyrie Stainless Steel. The Brownells AR-15 Stainless Steel Barre is available in both 18 and 24-inch configurations.
If you’re building out your AR for deer hunting or home defense, the 18″ will give you better maneuverability. However, if you’re looking to maximize the distance on your AR-15 and .224 Valkyrie round, the longer 24″ barrel is the way to go.
The 1:7 inner twist ratio of this barrel makes it ideal for the .224 Valkyrie round, particularly when utilizing bullets weighing at least fifty-five grains. Keep in mind that the lower the twist ratio, the more suitable it is for heavy bullets. The Brownell AR-15 .224 Valkyrie barrel is built out of heavy-duty, high-quality stainless steel, giving you superior resistance to rust and corrosion to other metal barrels.
It’s worth mentioning that the gas block on this barrel does not have a dimple. While a dimple isn’t absolutely essential for the rifle to work (it may work just fine without one), a dimple can assist better in aligning the gas block with the gas hole in the barrel. While screws will ensure that everything is kept properly in place, dimples can work to keep everything aligned if the screws become loose at all.
- Accepts Heavy .224 Valkyrie Rounds
- Durable stainless steel construction
- Incredibly precise even at long distances
- Minimal shuddering and muzzle elevation while firing
- 1:7 Twist ratio perfect for large rounds
- Gas block index has no dimple
If you’re looking to drop some money on a premium high-quality barrel, then consider getting yourself a BSF 20″ .224 Valkyrie Carbon Fiber Jacketed Barrel. The BSF 20″ .224 Valkyrie Carbon Fiber Jacketed Barrel. Is a rigid, lightweight, smooth, and extremely durable barrel made from premium quality items with a price tag to match.
This multi-purpose barrel is designed to be exceptionally tough without adding a lot of weight to your rifle. It’s built out of 416R stainless steel with a carbon fiber outer wrapping instead of the usually anodized hard coats that you’ll find on other barrels. This mesh of stainless steel and carbon fiber gives you a virtually indestructible barrel that is lightweight and incredibly durable, with superior surface wear and corrosion resistance.
The 20″ barrel design is the perfect length to show off the .224 Valkyries firepower and range without being excessively long, giving you excellent maneuverability without sacrificing on performance. The barrel is also rifled with a 1:7 Twist Ratio, perfect for shooting larger bullets like the .224 Valkyrie.
- Extremely durable, lightweight and corrosion-resistant construction
- Built out of premium quality materials.
- Beginner friendly installation
- Dissipates heat quickly
- Optimum barrel length for multi-purpose use
- Very expensive
The Ballistic Advantage Premium Series .224 Valkyrie 20″ Fluted Rifle Barrel is a high-quality barrel with durable stainless steel construction and an array of impressive features that gives you the best value of your money. As the name implies, this is a fluted barrel, which in theory should improve the overall durability of the barrel. It’s also bead blasted instead of the typical smooth finish you can find on other barrels which. Although will be more susceptible to rust, will also remove any light reflection you’d get from a shiny barrel.
Fortunately, the barrel itself is built out of durable and rust-resistant 416R stainless steel which should help with any rust built up. It also has a nickel boron coated, extended feed ramp extension for superior reliability and aesthetically pleasing lines, and rifled with an optimum .224 Valkyrie twist ratio of 1:7.
- Fluted barrel design decreases weight and increases rigidity
- Comes with ââNickel coated M4 feed ramp extension
- Bead blasted finish removes reflective surface qualities
- High quality 416R stainless steel construction
- Bead blasting makes the barrel more vulnerable to moisture
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If you’re a precision shooter looking for a great barrel to compliment you on your next competition, then consider trying out the Faxon Firearms .224 Valkyrie Heavy Fluted Profile Barrel. Thanks in part to its unique 1:6.5 twist ratio, you should expect to get slightly better performance when shooting large caliber bullets at longer distances with extreme accuracy.
This barrel has a heavy-duty profile and has been designed to perform in any weather condition. It’s built from 416R stainless steel with a salt bath nitride finish and designed with heavy flutes for a lightweight, durable, and extremely weather-resistant barrel.
To make maintenance easier, the barrel is manufactured with 5R rifling, which reduces sharp angles and jacket deformation while increasing bullet velocity as it exits the barrel. You should be able to find the Faxon Firearms .224 Valkyrie Heavy Fluted Profile Barrel in 20″, 22″, and 24″ barrel lengths.
- Easy installation
- Tight fitting barrel design
- Heavy flutes for a lightweight and durable barrel
- Built out of 416R stainless steel with a salt bath nitride finish for great corrosion resistance
- Expect slightly better accuracy, range, and performance than other 1:7 barrels
- Some users report the 24″ Barrel as under gassed/ refusing to cycle the rifle properly.
Faxon Firearms has crafted a solid barrel for the .224 Valkyrie that is also much more affordable than many other competing .224 Valkyrie barrels out there. The Faxon Firearms .224 Valkyrie Heavy Fluted Profile Barrel is a very accurate barrel that is capable of shooting sub MOA groups in the right hands.
The barrel also comes in a 5R hybrid rifling, ideal for getting the maximum performance out of your .224 Valkyrie Cartridge. With proper maintenance, you should expect to get around 10,000+ rounds through this barrel without issues, thanks in part to its durable stainless steel construction.
The .224 Valkyrie has a special place amongst the multitube of AR-15 Cartridges that have come out over the years. It’s the perfect choice if you’re the type of person who’s looking to get the most range out of your AR-15 without having to spend a lot of money on an entirely new build. Even though there are many things to consider when purchasing a .224 Valkyrie barrel, it’s always best to go with your gut and choose one that will work for what your vision and use is for the rifle build.
Any of the options above are great choices. Our selection of .224 Valkyrie barrels offered today will be a decent improvement whether you’re constructing a rifle from start or just replacing a worn-out .224 barrel. If you decide to take a different path, you can always go back to our buyer’s guide section from earlier to locate a good .224 Valkyrie barrel that suits your needs.
If you have a sub 16″ rifle barrel, be sure to verify with your local state and federal regulations. It’s possible that you’ll have to rethink your rifle construction to comply with varied state legislation for AR variants, such as the AR-15. Otherwise, consider purchasing a Carbine-length barrel instead if you’re not sure.