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Well not everybody will be surprised, e.g. one that won't be surprised is Glockman10mm he called it right all along.

This is picture results of the 750 round minimal lube test I ran on a suppressed, 12-1/2" SBR a few weeks back.

As you move through the pics, understand these are quite difficult to take due to the details, lighting, shadows, etc. In some cases I created cutouts and blew them up so we could see them better. Nevertheless, pics will never be like seeing in person.

Here we go - the dirty stuff first:











And now for the clean-ups and damage done.

As for the damage done - I really didn't see any damage. You can't see the non-damage as well from the pics as in person, but there's enough in the pics to indicate the condition.

Here's a shot of the cleaned up bolt from the top with a cut out:



and another view:



And another view, although I really did not expect to see any damage on the BCG (and there isn't) because it's steel riding in an aluminum receiver.



Here's an inside the upper receiver shot. These are the hardest to shoot and understand, soooo...what you want to look at is the thin, long shiny part just about in the center of the picture. That's one of the receiver rails the BCG runs on. It's hard to tell from the pic, but you can still clearly see the machining marks where the rail(s) were originally machined.

It's not that upper shiny strip, that's the top of the receiver, not a rail. I guess you can see why I had such a hard time getting decent pics :( In fact in the following pic, I could get a focus on the rail near the rear or near the front, but not both. But to the eye, the machining marks are quite prevalent. If there had been much wear, they would be gone or almost gone.



To recap, I applied lube to the BCG rails with a q-tip; put one drop in the bolt cavity, and one drop on the bolt cam pin. I then proceeded to slow fire 750 rounds with absolutely no cleaning and no more lube of any kind. I really don't see any damage to the bolt or the upper receiver. There may be some wear, but it appears to be minimal.

Clean up wasn't that bad either. I didn't get it spotless and you can see a few stains, etc. in the pics, but there are no scratches, scars, scuffs, etc.
 

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Great stuff Tangle, thanks for the follow up and pics.
 

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Nice Tangle. Good job.
 
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Nice…..

I think the mostly made mistakes that AR owners make are; they run um dry, while running um hard, and then leave um dirty while doing it. Then they wounder why is my AR fouling up on me?

Most over I feel that running um dry causes most of the issues an owner will ever expereance. That and running steel cased ammo through um.
 

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Nice…..

I think the mostly made mistakes that AR owners make are; they run um dry, while running um hard, and then leave um dirty while doing it. Then they wounder why is my AR fouling up on me?

Most over I feel that running um dry causes most of the issues an owner will ever expereance. That and running steel cased ammo through um.
But I pretty much did all of that and didn't have a single malfunction in 750 rounds. I put 3 drops of oil on a q-tip and rubbed it across the BCG rails. I dropped a single drop in the bolt cavity and a single drop on the bolt cam pin. I then shot shot 750 rounds without cleaning or lubing, and it took about a week to get it all done.

I guess it could be debated whether I was running dry or not, but if you look at the "dirty" pics, there's not a trace of lube anywhere.
 

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But I pretty much did all of that and didn't have a single malfunction in 750 rounds. I put 3 drops of oil on a q-tip and rubbed it across the BCG rails. I dropped a single drop in the bolt cavity and a single drop on the bolt cam pin. I then shot shot 750 rounds without cleaning or lubing, and it took about a week to get it all done.

I guess it could be debated whether I was running dry or not, but if you look at the "dirty" pics, there's not a trace of lube anywhere.
I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that the need for the M16 to be highly lubed to function was actually grossly overstated because of the problematic magazines that were used at one time, and not a lube issue at all.

You see, when you checked in to a Marine infantry unit, you were issued your magazines with all of your other gear.

These magazines were produced by a variety variety of venders; Sanchez, Cooper, Adventure Line, and Colt.
It was a well known fact later on that some of these mags were problematic. Very rarely, unless you were checking in to a unit like Force Recon, STA, or FAST Company, were you issued mags that were in the package in new condition.

So, between the faulty made mags, and those that were just worn out, at that time (my time), the answer to a malfunction on the range was to dump copious amounts of CLP in to the chamber and rock on.

I soon learned to mark my mags and isolate the bad ones, and make good friends with the armory guys to get the replacements.
Soon thereafter, I learned how little lube the gun really needed.

As far as running them hard, three round burst was seldom, if ever used. It was there for one tactical reason; to gain fire superiority because you were in a position you shouldn't been in to begin with.

But you could dump an entire combat load out in short order on semi auto fire with no problems with a light lubed bolt.
 

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I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that the need for the M16 to be highly lubed to function was actually grossly overstated because of the problematic magazines that were used at one time, and not a lube issue at all.

You see, when you checked in to a Marine infantry unit, you were issued your magazines with all of your other gear.

These magazines were produced by a variety variety of venders; Sanchez, Cooper, Adventure Line, and Colt.
It was a well known fact later on that some of these mags were problematic. Very rarely, unless you were checking in to a unit like Force Recon, STA, or FAST Company, were you issued mags that were in the package in new condition.

So, between the faulty made mags, and those that were just worn out, at that time (my time), the answer to a malfunction on the range was to dump copious amounts of CLP in to the chamber and rock on.

I soon learned to mark my mags and isolate the bad ones, and make good friends with the armory guys to get the replacements.
Soon thereafter, I learned how little lube the gun really needed.

As far as running them hard, three round burst was seldom, if ever used. It was there for one tactical reason; to gain fire superiority because you were in a position you shouldn't been in to begin with.

But you could dump an entire combat load out in short order on semi auto fire with no problems with a light lubed bolt.
I was issued dented metal magazines from the armory before.

First combat deployment, I bought my own PMAGS (2008-2009).

Second deployment (2009-2010), company commander found some funds to give each grunt 8 window PMAGS.

I still use all those mags regularly, not issues.

Tangle, I'm not all that surprised by your results. Did you get any malfunctions before 750?
 

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I was issued dented metal magazines from the armory before.

First combat deployment, I bought my own PMAGS (2008-2009).

Second deployment (2009-2010), company commander found some funds to give each grunt 8 window PMAGS.

I still use all those mags regularly, not issues.

Tangle, I'm not all that surprised by your results. Did you get any malfunctions before 750?
Sounds like some things never change.....
Wish P-Mags were an option back then.
 

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But I pretty much did all of that and didn't have a single malfunction in 750 rounds. I put 3 drops of oil on a q-tip and rubbed it across the BCG rails. I dropped a single drop in the bolt cavity and a single drop on the bolt cam pin. I then shot shot 750 rounds without cleaning or lubing, and it took about a week to get it all done.

I guess it could be debated whether I was running dry or not, but if you look at the "dirty" pics, there's not a trace of lube anywhere.
Im going to show this thread to all the people who seem to think they need some piston gun because they think a DI gun will never last in their fantasy SHTF scenario because they will get dirty and jam up.
 

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Im going to show this thread to all the people who seem to think they need some piston gun because they think a DI gun will never last in their fantasy SHTF scenario because they will get dirty and jam up.
Wait until part of the piston system breaks.....An AR is not an AK.
 

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Being new to the AR, I certainly don't have the experience you guys do. But I'm not that surprised at the pictures. If these or any guns couldn't handle "FNG"-type use (re: not enough lube, banging around, etc.), they wouldn't be worth having. These are combat-type long guns, if they pitch a fit and refuse to work through a few hundred rounds without taking them apart and lovingly bathing them, then they aren't combat worthy. Where trouble starts with most guns is running them completely dry out of the box for 1000 rounds, sitting them aside for a month in a corner to let everything harden inside, and then taking them out for another 1000+ run.

Any quality gun is going to be able to take some hard use, it's the intentional neglect that gets them in trouble. I wasn't in country, so I really have no business talking about malfunctions over there. But I would bet the environment those guys fought in would matter a decent bit in how their rifles held out.
 

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Wait until part of the piston system breaks.....An AR is not an AK.
One reason I wouldnt buy a piston AR(aside from maybe an H&K if I could afford it) is because there is no standard for it. I have seen torture tests that have shown AR's outlasting AK's though.
 

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Tangle - You need to edit your original post to;
This is picture results of the suppressed 750 round minimal lube test I ran a few weeks back.
- or something to that effect.

Those of us that know you, know all your shots are suppressed. Newby's or from other forums that get pointed in this direction don't. The fact that it was suppressed shooting makes this more of a point.
 

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Is it just me or are those rails on the bolt carrier discolored blue by heat?
 

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Im going to show this thread to all the people who seem to think they need some piston gun because they think a DI gun will never last in their fantasy SHTF scenario because they will get dirty and jam up.
Hmmm, I hate to say this then, but I'm converting all my AR's to Adams Arms piston systems. The AA piston system has been around a long time now and been in a lot of competitions and I haven't heard of any failures. Furthermore a well known gun writer, Patrick Sweeny did an extensive torture test of both piston and DI guns. It included running over them with a truck, freezing them in ice, throwing them off a roof top, burying them in sand, and numerous other tests. Both the DI and piston guns passed without a problem.

Then, and I realize this is an H&K, but it still represents a valid comparison of a well established DI system versus a piston system.


Now, having presented all that, the DI is well established as a reliable system and there's no reliability issue supporting a change to a piston system. I'm changing because the piston runs cleaner and produces more of a smoke like "dirty". It allows me to easily adjust the gas flow WITHOUT USING A TOOL OF ANY KIND from 0, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% depending on what the configuration I'm running and the ammo I'm shooting.

For some time now I've been running accuracy tests by first shooting a pencil barrel AR with a DI system and then changing DI out for a AA piston system and I can see no differences in accuracy. If anything the piston seems to have a very slight edge.

As soon as I finish this, I will be posting accuracy results from a 16" AR with an AA piston system. I've already posted an accuracy test for a 18" heavy barrel DI system. The results are comparable and show no advantage of either that couldn't be explained by variables other than the gas system.

Having said all that, I see no justification for most people to fret over either gas system. Nothing wrong with DI if that's what one has.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
...Did you get any malfunctions before 750?
I got 3 mals as I recall. But they were due to changing to a weaker ammo, the gas port wasn't set for. When I went back to the original ammo I started with, I had no more malfunctions.

I actually did a video to confirm this was an ammo problem, not a lube problem.


Just to be clear, other than the ammo problems, even at 750 rounds I had zero failures with the ammo the gun was set up for. I terminated the test not because of failures, there weren't any, but because it was simply time to stop the test. I felt nothing more would be gained by continuing.
 

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Tangle - You need to edit your original post to;
- or something to that effect.

Those of us that know you, know all your shots are suppressed. Newby's or from other forums that get pointed in this direction don't. The fact that it was suppressed shooting makes this more of a point.
Done! Check out the OP.
 

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Is it just me or are those rails on the bolt carrier discolored blue by heat?
It's not from heat, there's no way I shot fast enough to produce enough heat to discolor the metal. Actually, I think that's color distortion due to the photography. I'll try to confirm this when I get home, but I believe the "blue" is actually the finish on the BCG - it didn't even wear through the finish.
 

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Wait until part of the piston system breaks.....An AR is not an AK.
There's really not much to break. The piston rod is probably the most susceptible due to the long slender profile, but that thing is HARD! I tried machining a small shoulder on it using a ceramic tool in my lath - I couldn't do it. Patrick Sweeny did extensive, extreme torture tests with both DI and various piston models - neither broke or failed.

It may be that the piston configuration is actually stronger than the DI. For example, I am aware of several gas key failures. I had a gas key failure myself. The gun is done when that happens. In my case, the bolts failed, in other cases the gas key got loose. I know, I know, properly staked - but that won't stop bolt failures like I had.

The piston systems don't have a gas key or bolts that can break. The piston "key" is machined into the BCG - it won't break.

Another problem I've seen with DIs are the gas rings. Before I go on, let me insert this: the belief that the gas rings need to be spaced with the gaps 120° apart is pure BS! Pure BS! I've run DI ARs for I don't know how many rounds and when I pull the BCG to clean or lube it, I notice the bolt is moving a little too freely. In one case a small piece of the gas ring is broken and missing but the gun still runs. In other cases I've discovered a gas ring has broken and is completely gone - and the gun never misses a beat! Hmmm, wonder where that little piece of metal got to?

Piston guns don't have gas rings.

I sometimes intentionally align my gas ring gaps just to make the point it doesn't matter. If the gun runs with a gas ring completely missing, gap alignment is insignificant.

But, the focal point here is that things break in DI guns too. And the things that break in DI guns aren't even in piston guns to start with.

However, it is my opinion that all this is academic in nature anyway. Both systems are reliable; both systems will probably fail from time to time. although, I have to say, I don't see any small parts in pistons to fail - maybe a spring or something but that's about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Is it just me or are those rails on the bolt carrier discolored blue by heat?
You have an eye for details! I did check this and it does not have heat discoloration although the pic suggests that perhaps. It's actually a combination of light FP-10 on top of a NiB finish.
 
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