Weaponizing the AR15

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Weapon
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Re: Weaponizing the AR15

Post by Weapon » Thu Aug 06, 2020 10:33 pm

Added some new upgrades to my 18” AR today - they are very likely comp use only but if you are a comp shooter...the gun feels amazing.

I will be fully testing them this weekend.
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Re: Weaponizing the AR15

Post by Weapon » Thu Aug 13, 2020 2:08 am

A quick check (combat vs. competition):

Take your bolt carrier group out of the AR, grab the bolt and pull it as far forward as it will go (while still in the carrier) and then set it upright on a table with the bolt on bottom...

If you have a SD/SHTF AR, you are running a full weight M16 bolt carrier, a milspec bolt with milspec gas rings and the carrier drops towards the table when you balance it on the bolt side...your gas rings likely need to be replaced. Remember the rule: reliability is your first priority with a SD/SHTF AR. Worn gas rings can be pretty damn worn before causing a single mis-feed...unless you add some dirty ammo, some grit and grime, extreme temps and maybe a slightly dry gun. If the bolt carrier drops, replace the rings just to be safe.

If you take a competition bolt carrier, with competition gas ring(s), a competition bolt, etc. and do the same test...if the bolt carrier falls down around the bolt under its own weight, it likely doesn’t mean squat other than your AR is very well tuned for competition (unless you are having reliability issues). Yeah - it’s a totally lax standard for gas leaks until you notice a problem as an ever-so-slightly loose fit can amount to smooth and fast.

I will post a pic or video if the above didn’t make any sense.

Side note: the above isn’t a test for a brand new BCG - that’s for after some break in...unless you are talking about a competition AR. If you are talking about a competition AR, it should be where you want within forty or so rounds. Yeah - I said 40 rounds (if am being lazy and using 55gr xm193)...splatter with lube, 12 rounds to spread the lube around inside the gun and settle things in, 8 more rounds to dial in the gas system to last round lock back (with a safety margin) and then 20 almost-zero-recoil giggle...I mean “verification” rounds.

Sneaky maneuvers:
On a competition AR, ditch the three gas rings. If you know how a key ring works, you can figure out how to get them off. Replace them with a single piece JP gas ring (which also works just like a key ring). When new, add a drop of lube to the gas ring(s) before testing and tuning...

If you are running a brand new competition AR and trying to dial everything in, run it wet at first. The bolt, BCG, buffer, etc. should all have a nice sheen of gun oil on them...or maybe a mixture of 3 oz of Royal Purple synthetic 5w-30 with an ounce of Marvel Mystery Oil (shake well before applying)...it isn’t the slickest goop I have come up with but it works great for break in. :)

ARs run better wet under almost all situations but break-in with a new AR is certainly the time to slather them up to run wet.

Almost forgot to mention this: on a defensive/SHTF use AR, run the above gas ring test fairly often. Every now and then you will get a carrier that has a slightly rough spot on the inside and it will eat gas rings until it wears in. I usually just replace the gas rings until the rough patch smooths out on it own for a couple of reasons:
1. Gas rings are cheap and very easy to replace
2. The inside diameter of the carrier has to be spot on - if you try to smooth out the inside of it and go overboard, you will end up having to buy a new carrier. If you have access to a machine shop and tools that can manage that level of accuracy, feel free to clean up the ID of the carrier...
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Re: Weaponizing the AR15

Post by Weapon » Thu Aug 13, 2020 11:47 pm

SHTF or competition build focus?

I probably should have broken this up into two threads but highlighting the differences is some times very valuable info as you can cover what to do on one while also hitting “never do this” on the other...

Split em up or leave both in the same thread?
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Re: Weaponizing the AR15

Post by LT USN (Ret.) » Fri Aug 14, 2020 6:32 am

Weapon wrote:
Thu Aug 13, 2020 11:47 pm
Split em up or leave both in the same thread?
I vote same thread
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Re: Weaponizing the AR15

Post by Lgaam » Fri Aug 14, 2020 2:18 pm

LT USN (Ret.) wrote:
Fri Aug 14, 2020 6:32 am
Weapon wrote:
Thu Aug 13, 2020 11:47 pm
Split em up or leave both in the same thread?
I vote same thread
I was going to vote break them up, but I'm capable of following along, and some of the comp stuff may be useful if I ever get days off when the local clubs have matches.
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Re: Weaponizing the AR15

Post by Weapon » Mon Sep 14, 2020 6:56 pm

The ammo shortage has brought testing to a crawl until I can reload some 5.56.

To a crawl? Yes...but not to an absolute halt. ;)

My current goal for a run and gun competition AR is to get one entirely dialed in for USPSA minor power factor ammo. Minor? For those new to USPSA multigun, it is worth pointing a few things out with regards to rifles and power factor....

The minimum caliber for rifle is 5.45 x 39.
The minimum caliber to make major with a rifle is...there is no minimum...but that doesn’t mean it is possible to make major with a 5.56NATO AR. The power factor required to make major with a rifle is 320. If you do the math on that, it means you would have to get a 55gr bullet up to about about 5820fps...your AR wouldn’t survive one round of it. What about 77gr? Yeah - if you have a top secret load recipe that lets you get one to 4156fps, you will just make major. That ain’t happening either.

As such, everyone shooting a 5.56/.223 in USPSA is shooting minor and you only have to get to 150pf for that. While lots of shooters are running 50gr bullets, the basic, off-the-shelf ammo is M193 55gr. Does it make minor? Even if you add in +5pf over the minimum 150 for 155pf, the 55gr bullet only has to hit 2819fps. M193 should do that easily out of a 16” barrel and most certainly faster out of an 18” barrel.

While you are likely very safe in assuming any Milspec ammo marked M193 will make minor power factor with a solid safety margin, it is still a good idea to zip a few of them over a chronograph just to make sure. Even if they are like 80 cents to a buck a round at the moment. :evil:

I will add some load data to this later - I just changed out my comp changed my load slightly so I will verify it before adding the info. There is nothing worse than shaky load data...so mine will not be shaky.
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