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July 9th, 2014

Problems with “Do-It-Yourself” AR-15s

Commentary by Robert Whitley
In recent years several major firearms component suppliers have promoted the idea of the “do-it-yourself” AR-15 build up. In one sense this is a good thing because it promotes peoples’ education and understanding of firearms, but the down side of this is some folks are assembling and modifying AR-15s without an understanding of the rifle and without the necessary skills and tools to do things properly. The net result of this “do-it-yourself” work can be an AR-15 that is non-functional, problematic or dangerous. Here are two examples of common issues with “do-it-yourself” modifications.

Opening Up the Ejection Port
One common modification for AR-15’s is the opening up of the ejection port. This is typically done to permit more room for ejection or loading of the rifle, and it is also typically done in conjunction with a side charging handle modification.

AR-15 Buffer installation

A common issue I have seen with this modification is that the person opening up the port removes the upper right hand carrier support and riding surface. The net result of this is that the carrier sits loose in the upper receiver when the bolt is in lock-up and this can have very detrimental effects on the function and accuracy of the AR-15. Below are more pictures of one that I saw recently.

Click Arrows to See all FOUR Pictures

Upper Receiver Harmed by Modification
Caption
Upper Receiver Harmed by Modification
Carrier Crooked Wear
Caption
Carrier Crooked Wear
Receiver Showing Gas Key Hits
Caption
Receiver Showing Gas Key Hits
Gas Key Hitting Receiver
Caption
Gas Key Hitting Receiver

Wrong Buffer Installed
Another common mistake is the use of an improper buffer with the rifle (i.e. like using a carbine buffer in a standard rifle length buffer tube). There are many after market buffers being sold out there, but if the wrong buffer is used with the rifle, it can allow the bolt carrier to cycle too far back so that the rear of the carrier gas key becomes the stop for the carrier (i.e. when it smashes into the upper part of the lower receiver – OUCH!).

AR-15 Buffer installation

We have even seen situations where the gas key is snapped right off the carrier from this, and it completely disables the rifle and can also cause extensive damage to the firearm as well. Unfortunately we have seen this situation far too often and it is clear that a person needs to fully understand how the buffer assembly works if “do-it-yourself” work is going to be done to the buffer assembly, since everything done to the buffer assembly has an effect on the rifle, its function and accuracy.

While I applaud the person who is self-reliant and has a “can do” attitude, the other side of this is when it comes to a firearm, “do-it-yourself” work should only be done when and if one fully understands the rifle and how it functions and how the work will affect the rifle.

Robert Whitley
AR-X Enterprises, LLC
199 North Broad Street
Doylestown, PA 18901
(215) 348-8789
www.6mmAR.com

Permalink Gunsmithing, Tech Tip 5 Comments »
March 19th, 2012

New AR Buttstock Adapter for Eliseo Tubegun Chassis Kits

Eliseo CSS Tubegun AR AdapterHere’s good news for AR fans who want to add an ultra-accurate Tubegun to their rifle collection. Now you can use many popular AR-specific buttstocks with Eliseo CSS Tubegun Chassis Kits. Gary Elesio has crafted a new adapter that fits between the Tubegun’s action sleeve and the buttstock, allowing the use of the many AR buttstocks which fit an AR buffer tube. The new adapter, priced at $60.00, is a simple, no-gunsmithing installation.

The buffer tube (with buffer removed) simply screws into the female-threaded CSS adapter unit, and then the AR buttstock is secured to the buffer tube (either by set-screws or locking collars, depending on the design). Finally, the whole assembly (AR buttstock plus adapter) slides into the rear of the Tubegun’s action sleeve, where it is secured by a tensioning screw.

Eliseo CSS Tubegun AR Adapter

Gary Eliseo of CompetitionShootingStuff.com (CSS) explains: “I’ve had lots of demand to support AR buttstocks on my chassis systems. The Lightweight Hunter Chassis will now be supplied with an adapter for mounting an AR buffer tube. This adapter, with an anodized finish, will also be available as an option for other CSS Chassis Kits. The whole system is reasonably light with an AR buttstock installed. With an ACE skeleton-style AR stock (shown in photos) the whole Tubegun weighs right at eight (8) pounds. That was with action in place and a 24″ sporter-weight barrel, but without optics. Some heavy-barrel ARs weigh more than that.” NOTE: The Chassis in the photos is right off Gary’s machines, so it is bare metal. As delivered, CSS Chassis Kits come with an Anodized, Cerakote, or Powder-coat finish, according to buyer preference.

Eliseo CSS Tubegun AR Adapter

Eliseo’s Light Weight Hunter (photo below) will now be delivered with the AR adapter, rather than a CSS-made buttstock. This gives the chassis purchaser the ability to choose from a variety of third-party buttstock designs, including collapsible stocks. The good news is the price of the CSS Light Hunter Chassis with Cerakote finish will be reduced $90.00 to $685.00. That’s a great deal when you consider most guys can use a buttstock they already acquired for their AR(s). If you have any questions about Gary’s new buttstock adapter, you can post in this Forum Thread, and Gary can give you an answer. Alternatively, email your questions to: order.info [at] competitionshootingstuff.com.

Eliseo CSS Tubegun Light Weight Hunter

Shown above is Gary Eliseo’s Light Weight Hunter with original CSS-made tubular buttstock. From now on, Light Weight Hunter Chassis Kits will be supplied with an AR buttstock adapter (and no buttstock), so the purchaser can select his preferred buttstock design from a variety of third-party options. This change allowed CSS to reduce the Light Weight Hunter Chassis price to $685.00 (including adapter).
Permalink Gunsmithing, Hunting/Varminting, New Product 2 Comments »
April 22nd, 2010

New Hydraulic Buffer for .308-Win AR-10 Style Rifles

With a standard AR-15 we’ve never had problems with the standard coil-spring-equipped buffer system (other than the annoying spring noise). But with the AR-15’s big brother, the heavier-recoiling AR-10, an enhanced buffer system is welcome. A upgraded buffer won’t reduce recoil force, but it can soften the perceived recoil pulse, allowing the shooter to get back on target more quickly while reducing shooter fatigue over an extended string of fire.

Buffer Technologies of Jefferson City, MO, has introduced a new hydraulic buffer for AR-10-type rifles. Priced at $99.95, the hydraulic buffer weighs 0.38 pounds, has a 5.8-inch compression length, and fits AR-10s with full-length buttstocks. The buffer, crafted from black-oxided steel and black-anodized aluminum, is optimized for use with the .308 Winchester cartridge.

Buffer Technologies Hydraulic Buffer

Buffer Technologies claims that its hydraulic buffer can help prevent failures of internal parts and optics by reducing shock and taming recoil. According to Rob Parham, Buffer Tech’s Military/LEO Sales Director: “Our new buffer makes a great gun even better, while protecting the valuable accessories on the firearm. This product is great in assisting target acquisition and allows for quicker follow-up shots.”

Permalink New Product No Comments »