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Gas Piston, Direct Impingement, or what? (Extreme Vanity)
Vanity | 10/29/08 | Mad Dawg

Posted on 10/29/2008 7:59:42 PM PDT by Mad Dawg

I'm thinking of an AR. I'm thinking of a Bushie. I'm thinking lighter, smaller, suitable for when the compost hits the air-conditioner, able to reach out and touch someone at 100 meters, but not too fancy to use on a groundhog.

I'm thinking gas-piston for reliability. I'm also thinking I could be being stupid.

Any thoughtful advice and recommendations would be gratefully accepted. I just have a feeling things could get crazy enough that a vang-comp shottie and my sigs might not be enough.


TOPICS: Hobbies; Military/Veterans; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: ar15; banglist; firearms; rifles

1 posted on 10/29/2008 7:59:42 PM PDT by Mad Dawg
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To: Mad Dawg

Over-debated topic.

Just get a Bushy or some other reputable AR.


2 posted on 10/29/2008 8:00:40 PM PDT by nerdwithamachinegun (All generalizations are wrong.)
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To: Mad Dawg

Bolt action 308. You won’t have to fire twice.


3 posted on 10/29/2008 8:01:37 PM PDT by ikka
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To: Mad Dawg

Insist on a 1-8 twist medium heavy 22 - 24 inch barrel, and able to use 80-gr bullets.


4 posted on 10/29/2008 8:03:14 PM PDT by wendy1946
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To: ikka

I’ll second that.(See tagline)


5 posted on 10/29/2008 8:03:40 PM PDT by Farmer Dean (168 grains of instant conflict resolution)
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To: Mad Dawg
For nearly any purpose any civilian could conceivably require the services of an AR style rifle, up to and including widespread civil unrest lasting for months on end, all you'll ever need is the standard issue gas system AR.

Buy yourself a Rock River and you'll never regret it.

L

6 posted on 10/29/2008 8:05:41 PM PDT by Lurker (She's not a lesbian, she doesn't whine, she doesn't hate her country, and she's not afraid of guns.)
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To: Mad Dawg

LWRC.


7 posted on 10/29/2008 8:07:26 PM PDT by DocH (Osama Obama: Leader of an America-Hating Socialist /Black Nationalist Sleeper Cell)
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To: Mad Dawg

Standard gas system works just fine unless you plan to live with the rifle outdoors in rainy jungle conditions for weeks at a time without cleaning the rifle.


8 posted on 10/29/2008 8:07:50 PM PDT by wrench
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To: Mad Dawg

I’ve been thinking the same way lately...


9 posted on 10/29/2008 8:11:21 PM PDT by BreezyDog
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To: Mad Dawg

There are literally a dozen decent brands and 3-4 excellent top tier brands. What those brands are is also an almost entirely subjective discussion.

Don’t get caught up in all the mall ninja/couch commando debates on the nit noid details.

Get as close to milspec as you can afford with milspec mags and ammo.

What’s your life worth?


10 posted on 10/29/2008 8:12:36 PM PDT by nerdwithamachinegun (All generalizations are wrong.)
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To: Mad Dawg

While the gas piston system does tend to fix the major problem with the AR, I must admit that the AR’s impingement issue is irrelevant unless you intend to use the rifle in either jungle or desert type terrains. The rest of the time the rifle seems to work fine.

The problem with the gas uppers is that there is no “standard pattern” for the gas system as all of them are different and no parts interchange. When and if a standard emerges is unknown, but that would be when you would feel free to buy only a gas rifle and be happy with it.

What you can do is buy a standard AR rifle and then get the gas piston upper of your choice for it - the cost won’t be so bad.


11 posted on 10/29/2008 8:16:13 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: Mad Dawg

Unless your building / buying a NFA Class 3 rig I’d ignore the hype and buy a good M4gery from Bushmaster and go with that. The Hk 416 is a great design for full auto yet after carrying and using assorted M16, M4, XM-177, GAU 5A/AA rigs for 26 plus years I can say the key is keeping the weapon clean and properly serviced. In civilian / retired status these days I keep a M4gery with ACOG and redimag in my vehicle and have taken many coyotes with it and used it at the range and 3 gun matches as well , rapid fire lots of rounds without cleaning..... never a failure to feed or fire thus far.

I’d buy the flattop bushmaster, add a redimag, a surefire forend light and a good assortment of 30 round magazines NOW as well as ammo !

A few key spares like pins and small springs that get lost more than they do broke during cleaning.

If you still want a piston rig this is one I have seen for civilian buy and personally fired trying to get it to fail .....good gas piston version.

As well a buy now and you can get a piston upper later if time allows and ya still want one !

Link to a good piston gun.

http://www.pof-usa.com/p415/p415.htm

....just my opinion and what I do and have experienced.

Stay safe and Good Luck !!


12 posted on 10/29/2008 8:16:14 PM PDT by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But have a plan to kill everyone you meet)
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To: wrench; All
live with the rifle outdoors in rainy jungle conditions for weeks at a time

When were YOU in my house?

Thanks all for your thoughts. Keep 'em coming, please.

13 posted on 10/29/2008 8:17:16 PM PDT by Mad Dawg (Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.)
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To: Farmer Dean

I am not sure that level of accuracy and power is the most important thing for that type of situation when you have civil unrest. I have a Bushmaster, and it is as accurate as somebody would need in such a situation. If somebody wants a little more power an AK-47 would be a good balance between power, accuracy, and ease of use. They are quite accurate within 200 yards.


14 posted on 10/29/2008 8:18:21 PM PDT by John Robie
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To: Mad Dawg
so you want to buy an AR-15?

least expensive rifle you're going to find with piston is probably going to be the AR-180B

15 posted on 10/29/2008 8:37:32 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( God doesn't wear a wristwatch.)
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To: Mad Dawg; All

Thanks to all for the thread and replies.


16 posted on 10/29/2008 8:43:09 PM PDT by Gondring (Paul Revere would have been flamed as a naysayer troll and told to go back to Boston.)
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To: Squantos; Mad Dawg
If you still want a piston rig this is one I have seen for civilian buy and personally fired trying to get it to fail .....good gas piston version.

Piston big bump, the M16's extractor retaining pin broke on me in the field at dusk. It wouldn't extract. It wasn't a good night. I haven't liked gas impingement since. JMHO

17 posted on 10/29/2008 8:48:05 PM PDT by neverdem (I'm praying for a Divine Intervention.)
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To: nerdwithamachinegun
"Just get a Bushy or some other reputable AR".

Or, if you can't afford the Bushmaster, buy the mini-14. Same ammo.

Still, ANY assualt rifle with detachable magazines and 1000 rounds of ammo IS YOUR PATRIOTIC DUTY.

18 posted on 10/29/2008 8:56:06 PM PDT by Mariner
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To: neverdem

I too expected Murphy at every corner and carried a spare upper that was scoped and halo’d in 3 gun match style for long 800 plus yard shots if they need to be taken at all. Most of us carried an entire spare bolt assembly as well as a lower rebuild kit of pins, parts and springs, c clips etc . We had that liberty to do such as does civilians these days .

Were I to have to return to service and get my choice of service rifle. It would be a Hk 416 in 6.8SPC with a M203 attached. IMHO hand down current best available service rifle combination to have for EVERY troop.

Everything man made is fallible .......:o)


19 posted on 10/29/2008 9:03:12 PM PDT by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But have a plan to kill everyone you meet)
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To: smokingfrog
Thanks for that wonderful link:

so you want to buy an AR-15?

20 posted on 10/29/2008 9:09:16 PM PDT by Mad Dawg (Oh Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.)
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To: Mad Dawg

just state publicly that you are not planning on targetting anybody running for President just to be sure that the DUmmies don’t try to spin this.


21 posted on 10/29/2008 9:21:16 PM PDT by bpjam (I don't see my country on TV. Which America are they showing?)
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To: Mariner

Me, I’m shopping for a FAL and another AR-15 lower at the show this weekend. :P


22 posted on 10/29/2008 9:54:25 PM PDT by Spktyr (Overwhelmingly superior firepower and the willingness to use it is the only proven peace solution.)
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To: Mad Dawg

There’s also the SIG 556. It’s gas piston and uses standard AR magazines. I noticed one at Sportsman’s Warehouse but didn’t actually examine it. I think it was around $1400 which was quite a bit more than I was looking to spend. Ended up buying a Bushmaster M4gery somewhere else.


23 posted on 10/30/2008 2:14:07 AM PDT by FreedomForce (A conservative 2012---maybe Palin)
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To: Mariner

The Mini-14 is a lot of fun to shoot but it’s inaccuracy is built into the design. I tried off and on for years to try to correct the problems but failed because buying a decent barrel was out of the question.

Mini’s are good, reliable rifles as truck guns for varmints that don’t shoot back.


24 posted on 10/30/2008 5:06:54 AM PDT by Shooter 2.5 (NRA - Vote against the dem party)
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To: Mad Dawg

I was all set on gas piston operation until I talked to John Paul of JP Enterprises, the maker of highly accurized rifles, and an actual real world shooting competitor.

He says that the piston operation is jarring enough that long distance accuracy is compromised, so if you are thinking about precision work, you should probably just go with gas operation.


25 posted on 10/30/2008 7:12:23 AM PDT by Atlas Sneezed (Guns don't kill people, criminals and the governments that create them do.)
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To: Mad Dawg

You’re only expecting to use it within 100m under fairly comfortable conditions; you’re thinking plinking & practice, with maybe home/neighborhood defense on extremely rare & limited circumstances. You’re NOT looking at frequent 600m shots in prolonged extremely dirty/wet conditions.

Piston is a toss-up. Really isn’t going to buy you anything unless you’re seriously expecting hard jungle/desert SpecOps use conditions. For all the badmouthing over the years, Stoner’s classic gas-impingement system works fine, just clean the thing once in a while.

Long barrel is unnecessary. If you’re planning for precision long-range shots (groundhogs at 600m), then yes get a long/heavy barrel. ...but you’re not, you expect larger targets under 100m. Being nothing special, I easily & reliably hit 100m targets with a 11.5” barrel.

A 16.1” barrel will do you just fine. Tighter twist rates, ideally 1:7”, are preferred so you’ll get better performance out of heavier rounds.

Scope is unnecessary for the same reasons. 100m with iron sights is easy for most people (your vision may differ). If SHTF, application will likely be a lot closer than the length of a football field. You’re trying to hit a 12” target, not a 1” one.

Non- or low-magnification optics may be desirable. IF you can find a reliable red-dot, target acquisition may be faster. Look at only those military-level versions that have an on-time exceeding one year. I’ve had a moderately cheap red-dot go blank while firing - a sinking feeling indeed. You’re looking at >$400 for a decent one. Put it on, turn it on, leave it on - if you worry about it turning off, take it off.

Iron sights are fine. Learn to use them.

The standard “M4gery” configuration will suit you just fine. I have a personal preference for the Colt M4LE line.

Get a suppressor if your jurisdiction allows and you can afford it. An AAC is worth the extra bucks. It will significantly (but not totally) reduce noise, and actually improve accuracy.

What you DO want is a solid reliable base platform. DPMS, Bushmaster, Armalite, Colt, maybe 1-2 others. Whatever model you get, and whatever doodads you attach, IT MUST GO BANG EVERY TIME. The piston/gas controversy is really largely irrelevant so long as you occasionally clean it. Don’t skimp on quality; when you really need it, you’ll be willing to pay the difference in price. Don’t screw around with replacing core components; while third-party manufacturers and zealots will assure you X is needed for superior performance, the basic rifle is built RIGHT by the manufacturer (that’s why you want a good manufacturer), and screwing around unbalances a system designed to work right.

Equal to the basic platform is ammo. Get good ammo designed to work in your configuration. The AR platform is tempermental, with lots of room for modifications that can work very well - or very badly. Poor ammo choices lead to poor performance - which (alongside cleaning) is the basis for most complaints. Shorter barrels prefer heavier rounds (my 11.5” requries >75gr ball) for optimal performance. With a 16.1” barrel you’ll want M855 ammo or some other 65gr round. Using ammo too light for the configuration will lead to inadequate terminal ballistics at applicable distances.

Ignore the posts about “get something else!” - you asked about AR15s, that’s a fine choice, focus on that. .308 is nice, but has a different application. 6.x may be superior, but is hard & expensive to deal with at this point. .223 / 5.56 will serve you well if you care for it well.

So...
Get a 16.1” gas-impingement iron-sights AR15 from a major respected manufacturer. Feed it 65gr M855 ball ammo. Attach a suppressor if you can. Clean it thoroughly and often. It will serve you well.


26 posted on 10/30/2008 7:29:14 AM PDT by ctdonath2 (I AM JOE THE PLUMBER!)
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To: neverdem

Isn’t that complaint akin to “the brakes are shot, so I made your horn louder”? How does a broken extractor demean gas impingement?


27 posted on 10/30/2008 7:32:00 AM PDT by ctdonath2 (I AM JOE THE PLUMBER!)
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To: Vor Lady

Book mark for later edification.


28 posted on 10/30/2008 8:11:03 AM PDT by Vor Lady (Proud to support Sarah Palin for Vice President!)
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To: John Robie

My plan would be to start’working the crowd” at 800 plus yards and switch over to a lighter caliber faster firing weapon at about 200 yards.


29 posted on 10/30/2008 9:17:28 AM PDT by Farmer Dean (168 grains of instant conflict resolution)
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To: John Robie

My plan would be to start’working the crowd” at 800 plus yards and switch over to a lighter caliber faster firing weapon at about 200 yards.


30 posted on 10/30/2008 9:17:28 AM PDT by Farmer Dean (168 grains of instant conflict resolution)
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To: nerdwithamachinegun; Mad Dawg
Get as close to milspec as you can afford with milspec mags and ammo.

Also consider springs and roll pins, firing pin, hammer...that's the beauty of mil-spec...this stuff is everywhere and universally compatible. I've got a friend that has a dare-to-be-different attitude towards firearms. As a consequence, he pays dearly for ammo and nobody has any parts to help him out with.

31 posted on 10/30/2008 10:03:36 AM PDT by gundog (Not guilty...by reason of inanity.)
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To: Farmer Dean

That makes sense. I have a big property by east coast standards, but my house is about 100 feet from the street.


32 posted on 10/30/2008 10:38:09 AM PDT by John Robie
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To: Mad Dawg

Get the direct impingement upper.
Use the money you save for ammo, magazines, etc.

If you decide sometime down the road that you really want a gas piston setup, all you should need to buy is the upper half.

Or, the default ar15.com answer - get both.


33 posted on 10/30/2008 1:55:20 PM PDT by javachip
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To: ctdonath2
Isn’t that complaint akin to “the brakes are shot, so I made your horn louder”?

No.

How does a broken extractor demean gas impingement?

I believe gas fouled the reciever, increasing friction to the point that the extractor retaining pin cracked in half across its diameter.

34 posted on 10/30/2008 3:34:55 PM PDT by neverdem (I'm praying for a Divine Intervention.)
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To: TapTap

Ping for your edification.


35 posted on 11/02/2008 4:44:49 AM PST by Vor Lady (Proud to support Sarah Palin for Vice President!)
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