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Author Topic: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.  (Read 2151 times)

Steve80

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Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
« on: August 30, 2016, 03:46:54 am »
I'm new to AR's and when mine comes in, is there advice you have that a newbie should know?  Do any parts break in (I read somewhere some parts might), need special care/cleaning out of the box...etc?
I've been getting a bit worried with some posts I've read at other sites where people had problems.  Is it normal for an AR to have issues early and now and then or should it be good for a long time?  I was reading that one person had numerous parts loose and screws coming out.  Another few had to do with gas leak issues.  Any tips on what I should expect will help.  Thanks with all the help.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2016, 04:00:50 am by Steve80 »
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    Kaso

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #1 on: August 30, 2016, 08:14:56 am »
    Is it normal for an AR to have issues early and now and then or should it be good for a long time?  I was reading that one person had numerous parts loose and screws coming out.  Another few had to do with gas leak issues.  Any tips on what I should expect will help.  Thanks with all the help.
    No, it is not normal to have a quality AR break down without serious use.  Every company will always have exceptions to that rule, but in general it is not to be expected.  The key word there was a quality AR. 

    I don't know how new you are to firearms in general, so I will repeat wisdom that I and many other gun owners have learned the hard way:  Don't buy a cheap AR-15.  Many of us do it, including most first time AR owners...  It never pays.  Put in the dollars, buy a good product from a respected company.  Who should you avoid?  Any company selling at a price point 'too good to be true.'  To name a few, (though there are others) DPMS, Delton, Model1, Doublestar, Interarms, and some would include PSA.  Also a safe bet, any off brand that the price doesn't make you wince.

    I know this is not what you want to hear.  The $500 ARs really are tempting for those on a tight budget, and who wouldn't rather to get the gun and ammo?  Just don't.  Seriously, if you trust me on this you will be happy.  Well, no actually you probably won't, as your AR will just plain work, and you will have no reason to be upset.  If you choose to ignore the advice, like I did when others gave it to me...  Only then will you truly appreciate the value of it.  :shrug

    To answer your question though, a spare bolt carrier group of a quality manufacture is going to be the most proactive 'spare parts kit' for any AR.

    GeorgeHill

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #2 on: August 30, 2016, 08:15:35 am »
    Keep it oiled.  Always.
    When you clean it, examine all your parts for problems.
    Keep it oiled.
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    sqlbullet

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #3 on: August 30, 2016, 10:14:53 am »
    Kaso, did you really mean the entire bolt carrier group, or just a replacement bolt?

    In general the carrier is pretty bullet proof assuming the gas key is staked properly.  The bolt has most of the small parts in the wear zone, and so a spare bolt can be a worthwhile thing to have.

    I would expect zero issues, but there are exceptions.  Buy once cry once always applies.  I tend to enjoy a puzzle, so budget guns that I have to tinker with often follow me home.  IIRC you are considering a Ruger AR556.  That gun should provide you lots of good service with nothing but some oil.

    I built my last budget AR for cheap.  Anderson lower I got for $33, PSA cheap-o parts kit.  PSA blemished upper without M4 cuts. I don't even remember where I got the barrel, but it was under $100.  PSA blemished premium BCG.  Amazon.com budget charging handle, gas tube and low profile gas block.  UTG 4/15 super slim hand guard.  Pretty sure I came in under $500 on that gun.

    And yet, it is the energizer bunny.  I have about 800 rounds through it so far and it hasn't hiccuped yet.  To be honest, all my AR builds are that way.  Feed them in spec ammo, and they just run.
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    Steve80

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #4 on: August 30, 2016, 01:12:11 pm »
    Ok, so I should avoid Ruger's 556 AR too?  I can understand Delton (never heard of it before), but surprised to avoid Ruger, even if they have a cheaper model.  I really started looking into these because California is going to ban them and needed something within a budget before the new law kicks into effect.  Otherwise I can't own any AR later.  I was going to order a Ruger 556 today but now I'm not sure what to do.   :banghead
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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #5 on: August 30, 2016, 01:31:54 pm »
    Ok, so I should avoid Ruger's 556 AR too?  I can understand Delton (never heard of it before), but surprised to avoid Ruger, even if they have a cheaper model.  I really started looking into these because California is going to ban them and needed something within a budget before the new law kicks into effect.  Otherwise I can't own any AR later.  I was going to order a Ruger 556 today but now I'm not sure what to do.   :banghead
    The Ruger AR is solid, like everything else Ruger turns out.  Personally I would pick them ahead of S&W and Colt, but that is just me.  My reasons are mostly preferring a solid brand, and Ruger is that.  George mentions S&W having a better barrel...  While it may be true, this is your first AR.  The rifle is going to outshoot you for a looong time.  If at some point you find the barrel is an impediment to you, ARs are modular to the extreme, and replacing the barrel with a better one will be easily done.  Or just go with S&W, if that is important to you.  I would go Ruger.

    GeorgeHill

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #6 on: August 30, 2016, 08:14:39 pm »
    S&W's better barrel is only better by small margins.  Both are fine guns, and you probably wont notice any difference.
    But you'll probably find the S&W Sport 2's on sales events for a few bucks less. 
    I was in a gun shop yesterday, and they had an Arm Pit High stack of Sport 2's in Boxes on the sales floor for customer to grab and go (to the 4473 Processing) for fast sales.   I asked about that, because it's rather unusual.  And the response was that they just sell so many of them, it's just easier for everyone.

    Most of the dealers I know - sell more M&P Sports than all other AR's combined.  Even more so now that S&W rolled out the Sport 2's, which is a huge improvement over the older Sport model.
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    Mississippi556

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #7 on: September 01, 2016, 08:52:37 am »
    For a reliable basic carbine on a budget, its hard to beat the M&P 15 Sport 2.  Everything you need and nothing more from a company that will stand by what they make and be here when needed.

    To new owners of ARs, run it wet, lots of oil on the BCG.  I like full synthetic motor oil.  Cheap.  Detergent additives very effective on carbon deposits.  Keep it clean, but don't feel compelled to clean the bore all the time.  Use a good coated or carbon fiber cleaning rod with proper jags when you do.  CLP for basic cleaning, Hoppes #9 for the bore.

    Get a sling and weapon light and use them.

    Mississippi"When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are safe"  Words of Jesus, Luke 11:21 (ESV).

    StevenTing

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #8 on: September 01, 2016, 11:22:07 am »
    For a reliable basic carbine on a budget, its hard to beat the M&P 15 Sport 2.  Everything you need and nothing more from a company that will stand by what they make and be here when needed.

    To new owners of ARs, run it wet, lots of oil on the BCG.  I like full synthetic motor oil.  Cheap.  Detergent additives very effective on carbon deposits.  Keep it clean, but don't feel compelled to clean the bore all the time.  Use a good coated or carbon fiber cleaning rod with proper jags when you do.  CLP for basic cleaning, Hoppes #9 for the bore.

    Get a sling and weapon light and use them.

    Good to know on the running it wet.  I have a new rifle that I haven't shot that is currently dry.  I was just going to put a little on but then again, based on how I'm going to use it next week, I better run it super wet.
    Utah

    GeorgeHill

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #9 on: September 01, 2016, 02:09:41 pm »

    The only way you can Over-Lube an AR is that if there is so much fluid in the area between the hammer and the firing pin, that the hammer can not push the fluid mass out of the way fast enough to allow for a reliable hammer strike on the firing pin.

    AR's do run best when Wet. 
    I've seen many a Jam because of a dry gun that gets hot and dirty.  They can be Hot.  They can be Dirty.  But if it's hot and dirty when dry - That's where the problems come up. 
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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #10 on: September 01, 2016, 02:16:40 pm »
    As amusing as the video is...
    Soaking your gun like that once in awhile - Not a bad idea.  Let it soak for a good long while. 20 minutes to an hour.  To let that oil penetrate into areas that can't normally be reached.  Not for Lubrication purposes, but for protection purposes. 
    Then once it's soaked - wipe everything off and blow the excess out, and pull a snake through the bore to clear it.   Especially on firearms that are all steal... Such as an M1A.  Just take the wood stocks off to prevent any problems with the wood.
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    tokugawa

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #11 on: September 01, 2016, 04:42:57 pm »
      Especially on firearms that are all steal... Such as an M1A.


     George, some of us BUY our M-1's...... ;)

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #12 on: September 01, 2016, 06:10:49 pm »
    George, some of us BUY our M-1's...... ;)

    You knew what he meant  :facepalm.

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #13 on: September 01, 2016, 06:58:50 pm »
     :facepalm :rotfl :thumbup1
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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #14 on: September 02, 2016, 11:38:48 am »
    I want to see what happens if he drops his gun in the dirt or when he's shooting in very windy conditions.  It will probably still run the same.  I also want to see more than 10 rounds.  I want to see 500 rounds down range to check functionality.
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    Mississippi556

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    Re: Tips/care with AR, what to expect, etc.
    « Reply #15 on: September 02, 2016, 02:54:49 pm »
    The video reminds me that motor oil, especially full synthetic, is an excellent lubricant for ARs.  Not advocating a full soak, but it works quite well as a "run wet" product, and is far less expensive that gun store lubes.

    Second observation is that in a dry, sandy, windswept environment, perhaps a dry lubricant might be a good choice.  I have a WMD Guns NiB-X BCG in one of my rifles.  Other than being easy to clean, I see no real benefit under normal circumstances.  But, if you need to run when being dry might be an advantage (high dust and dirt) having a BCG that does not attract and hold that stuff and has a dry lubricant coating like nickel-boron might be an advantage.
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