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  #1  
Old 04-17-2017, 08:32 AM
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Odd cycling problem with Colt AR15.


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It was an unfired 1989 HBAR. Hand cycling the bolt it would sometimes drag while closing, sometimes dragging hard enough to stop it. With a loaded mag and releasing the bolt catch the bolt would stop between about 1/4" and 3/4" after contacting a round. Dropping it again or a couple times would eventually chamber, it would fire and eject fine, then stick on closing again. Nothing looked rough, damaged, abnormal, and I tried cleaning and lubing a few times and with different lubes.

Turned out to be the cam pin slot in the BCG wasn't machined right. Any force that pushed the bolt back would make the pin cam over hard and lock it up. I re-shaped the slot with a rotary tool and it seems to have cured it, haven't shot it yet but it chambers fine now.

Just FYI for the next guy, it's something I've never heard of and woulda never expected.
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  #2  
Old 04-18-2017, 05:54 AM
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Consider yourself lucky. In 1989 time frame I got a new HBAR and the bore was so crooked that at 100 yards were was only two clicks in windage left before it hit the carrying handle.
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Old 04-19-2017, 06:59 AM
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****, didn't realize Colt made junk and I just figured it was that one in a million screw-up. Now that it cycles it'll be interesting to see what it does for accuracy.
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  #4  
Old 04-20-2017, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Restricted Colt View Post
****, didn't realize Colt made junk and I just figured it was that one in a million screw-up. Now that it cycles it'll be interesting to see what it does for accuracy.
I wouldn't say they make junk. They make production firearms. About the same quality as modern day Remington, Ruger, S&W, etc...

Colt is still using better materials in certain places compared to some other manufacturers but build quality and finish is no different. They make a middle end production level firearm. Honestly their AR15 is no better or worse than a FNH or even some of the S&W models. Their 1911 is not much different from their competitors in the same price range.
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Old 04-25-2017, 12:10 AM
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I was at Colt for a couple days once and I walked the production floor and occasionally I would stop and watch a operation.

Roscoe had always told me something that has proved true which summarized is:

Everyone thinks that every employee in a manufacturing plant is a blood relative of John M. Browning, Sam Colt, etc and that they take great care in everything they are doing and that simply is not the case.

So to confirm this I asked this guy what he was making and the had NFC of what he was doing or what it did in the firearm.

I have seen M1911A1 barrels with no rifling. I saw a M1911A1 certified as proof fired but no firing pin hole in the slide.

I have seen finished fielded rifle that the barrel was bored but no rifling ever put in.

I was told by a vendor that they had not checked firing pin energy on their product in 15 years.

I understand there is a guy that has a famous make rifle marked and chambered 243 with a 25 caliber bore and that firm 100% test fires every rifle at 50 yards for accuracy acceptance.

Had a guy who worked for Remington 40 years say they knew bad stuff got out but to send it back and it would be fixed and they did.

Saw a new S&W Mod 10 with a Mod 36 hammer in it out of the box.

The folks that work in a gun plant are just folks that needed a job for the most part.

Bottom line you can have the best design ever thought up and the "floor will kill you" which means the folks making the parts.

Roscoe went back to Springfield to pick up stuff he had in storage there from when he worked at SA and he talked to guys who did not take the move and went to S&W. They had just come from the employees annual picnic and they told him that the main complaint was the quality of the guns that were being shipped and management's response was ,"So what we are still making 30% net." That was in 1979.

Bob Snodgrass worked at the Army Small Cal Lab and he came up with the best saying I have ever heard which went along these lines "when you buy a rifle you are buying a parts kit and to get the best performance you have to take it apart and refit everything and put it back together".

I saw that proved, gunsmith for US Border Patrol got in five Rem 700 308 varmints to be set up as sniper rifles. He mounted scopes on them and went out and targeted them with Fed Match. Came back and removed barrels, squared the action face, lapped the lugs, set the barrels back to tighten the headspace, recrowned the muzzles and shot them again with same lot of FED MATCH, four of the five had the groups cut in half and the fifth was much better but not as good as the other four.

I got a Remington 40X I could not call a shot with standing. Bore was so crooked and the chamber was so big. I set it back several times and rechambered it. I finally gave up on that barrel and put it on a hunting rifle after I cut off most of the off center section.

Had a buddy here go hunting in the rain, came home and put his 700 in cabinet loaded. He took it out several months later and he had trouble extracting cases. I told him to bring it down and I borescoped it and chamber was badly rusted and when that was cleaned out badly pitted.

It had a sporter barrel so I cut half the threads off, set the barrel back and rechambered it with a tight reamer but was not able to clean up all the pitting but there was no extraction problem. He shot it and said it shot better then than it ever had before.

Problem now is I really feel for the average new shooter now who was most likely raised by parents who were anti war protestors during Nam and have never been around guns and they are getting all kinds of bad info which is why I try to help them all I can.
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Last edited by Humpy; 04-25-2017 at 12:14 AM.
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  #6  
Old 04-25-2017, 12:57 PM
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Quote:
The folks that work in a gun plant are just folks that needed a job for the most part.
A significant statement to which I will attest.

I work in manufacturing, and some of the people that have been given jobs......
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  #7  
Old 04-25-2017, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by vic in va View Post
A significant statement to which I will attest.

I work in manufacturing, and some of the people that have been given jobs......


This is true for every industry. It may not be true for every company or business, but it is true of the bigger ones. You just can't find enough people who are passionate or care about the industry they are in to work for the money you can pay them to run an assembly line mass producing products.

If you want a product made by people who care about the product and know the industry, you will pay more money. Usually much more money. There is a reason for the assembly line. You can take almost anyone off the streets and teach them in days how to make cars or firearms on an assembly line. A hand fitted precision firearm requires a lot of patience, skill, a bunch of mess ups, and a lot of experience. It also takes much more time to produce. Even for very experienced individuals. And the market for such items is much smaller. How many Colt, Ruger, RIA, Springfield, etc.. 1911's do you see at a public range? Now how many Les Baer, Ed Brown, KnightHawk, Wislson Combat, STI, or even Dan Wesson 1911's do you see?

I see a lot of Ruger m77's, Ruger American rifles, Savage, and odd Remington rifles. I very rarely will see someone shooting a Sako or other high end hunting rifle.

Last edited by Trent12; 04-25-2017 at 01:23 PM.
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Old 04-25-2017, 01:43 PM
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Ode to Humpy

Humpy, you are exactly the kind of poster that I joined this forum to access. In joining, I expected to hear the opinions of a bunch of a mass of the "lesser informed", but was hoping that I could sift a few flakes of gold out of the tailings, thank you for making my hope a reality. I will watch for your posts avidly.
Also, having guided in two provinces, and one territory, I am in a unique position to offer advice on where best to find specific, QUALITY game animals; and some of the better outfitters in Western Canada. Please feel free to inquire.
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  #9  
Old 04-25-2017, 05:18 PM
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Trent, you are correct about "every industry", especially the bigger ones.

When you have a large workforce, you will encounter just about every possible type of personality.

Higher pay attracts more and better candidates, allowing more choice. Bean-counters are the bane to that....
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  #10  
Old 04-26-2017, 04:00 AM
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I am simply amazed,,,after hearing all these stories !!! After owning 40 plus rifles and pistols I have never had a bad shooter or a MFG screw up except for a CHEAP Iver Johnson 22/22mag revolver,,, shot and functioned just fine right up until the hammer flattened out and quit igniting the rimfire primers ! ,

Last edited by Tomanyguns; 04-26-2017 at 04:02 AM.
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  #11  
Old 04-28-2017, 05:11 AM
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Well it gets worse. I went to NRA Show in Charlotte about 8 years??? back and walked into a vendor's booth of a major manufacturer and asked, "Is there anyone here from engineering?" Several pointed to this one guy and said, "He is."

The guy steps up all with a superior haughty tone and said, "I'm from engineering."

Thus I asked him, "What's the copper indent requirement on the XXX XX?" Guy had NFC look and directed me to a "technician". He didn't know either but he got very interested in it when I explained to him what it meant in the big picture of launching bullets down range and getting uniform ignition.

He said eventually I never heard of this but as soon as I get back I am going to find out.

I was pulling pits with a guy at Perry once and I explained it all to him and he was interested and said, "My gunsmith is here, I'm going to run this by him." Next day he sides up to me and says, "My gunsmith never heard of that." I replied, "I'm not surprised." and he walked off like I was BSing him.



Whats more if you don't have the above you are not going to find out what you have and these are mine. Last one I bought on on the left and it was $155.00 about 2002. It is for 06 and like cartridges. The center is 308 and like cartridges and the right one is 5.56/223 only.

Next you need below and finally the copper pellets that to my knowledge now are only available from Olin at East Alton and they are pricey last time I checked. Note the center of the probe is contacting copper cylinder to the side of the indent and gage is adjusted to zero.


Now on this one the probe is in the indent and rotated to make sure the probe is at the lowest point of the indent and gage is showing .0187" indent which means it exceeds SAAMI recommendation but does not meet the standards of at least two vendors I am aware of nor the M16 rifle.


What does all this mean? If your striker won't indent the copper cylinder at least .020" you are not going to get uniform ignition which will eat you alive in vertical dispersion at 1000 yards. The latest SAAMI recommendation is only .016" indent and I would prefer in excess of .020.

As the indents back off your extreme velocity spread is going to increase and this happens WAY BEFORE YOU GET A MISFIRE. What does that mean? Well first you cover the entire 10 ring top to bottom, then entire 9 ring and maybe 8 ring if you velocity spread is 100 fps. LC match would cover entire 9 ring vertically on some lots.

Something else I forgot to add if the center of the firing pin impacts the center of the primer for more than .020" off center indent your velocity variation goes up and your chances of a misfire go up the further it is off center. All this is in a multi million primer test program conducted by Frankford Arsenal back in last century. I have a copy of the report.

How low can it go? Well primers are identified at the ALL FIRE DROP HEIGHT which will deliver a .012" indent on copper cylinder and the ALL NO FIRE DROP HEIGHT will mean no primer will fire and that is achieved at .009". That is the thickness of a sheet of notebook paper. Bottom line at .012 all your rounds will go bang but your vertical dispersion is going to make sure you never win anything.
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Last edited by Humpy; 04-29-2017 at 12:49 AM. Reason: My computer keeps posting typos ! ! ! !
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  #12  
Old 04-28-2017, 06:26 AM
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Humpy it appears the pellet holders have been Rockwell checked. Why?
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Old 04-28-2017, 07:52 AM
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I think you are seeing drops of water. If you referring to the copper cylinder that is striker indent.

That plastic stock it was laying on was wet with dew. Be assured they were wiped down with ER before putting them back in their bottle.

Offhand I only know one other person with a copper holder and that is for a magnum and he is in Wheatland, Wyoming.

That reminds me, I also have a holder for magnum as well I got after that pic was made. It fits most of the belted magnums.
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Old 04-28-2017, 04:01 PM
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Humpy i have never heard of this either ,,, no wonder he walked off ! I am going to assume among other things and this is a wild guess, it has to do with checking the firing pin for safety, as to not puncture through the primers ???
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Old 04-28-2017, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Tomanyguns View Post
I am simply amazed,,,after hearing all these stories !!! After owning 40 plus rifles and pistols I have never had a bad shooter or a MFG screw up except for a CHEAP Iver Johnson 22/22mag revolver,,, shot and functioned just fine right up until the hammer flattened out and quit igniting the rimfire primers ! ,
I've had very little problems with firearms. I'll list the ones I've had problems with from the factory. I can't even count how many different firearms I've owned. I used to do a lot of trading, buying, and selling.

Glock 23 Gen 4 (recent). Failures to feed last round in magazine. Fixed now. Sent back to Glock and they said they couldn't find anything. Got it back really clean I might add, and it works flawlessly.

Ruger .22/45 lite. More of an ammo problem but with Winchester black copper plated .22's it leads badly and the whole barrel plugs shut and it starts to key hole bad. Very difficult to clean that crud out.

LWRC m6IC SPR.... proprietary AR15 based carbine. Rifle works flawlessly but it had an early production out of spec bolt cath that didn't work with a lot of magpul mags. They fixed it quickly and on their dime. Top notch service. I love this rifle. Shoots sub MOA all day long, works without regular maintenance, and has never ever malfunctioned aside from that bolt catch.

Colt combat commander (new). I've got 600 rounds through it now. Flawless for the first 200! Then I started having the odd failure to feed the last round in the mag. Tried some chip McCormick mags and Wilson mags and it's problem free for another 300. Something with the factory Colt mags I'm assuming.

S&W 629-6. The cylinder was a little hard to get out. Sent back, came with a new barrel and ejector rod! Flawless now.

Probably another 50-60+ different firearms from various manufacturers problem free!

Edit: I did pick up a new S&W M29 classic in the store last weekend and it was utter crap. The trigger had reset problems and the cylinder didn't want to release. The finish was very nice though!

Last edited by Trent12; 04-28-2017 at 06:32 PM.
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Old 04-29-2017, 12:21 AM
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Tomanyguns,

If you have to light of a strike when the pressure inside the case rises it pushes on the inside of the primer towards the rear and wants to reverse the firing pin and push it back into the opening in the bolt face so you get a little crater around the edge of the primer indent.

When that happens you are right on the edge of the primer "blanking" and the entire indent section of the primer breaking away and going inside the firing pin opening in the bolt face.

That can cause several things. The little piece wedges inside the firing pin alley and retards it from going all the way forward. I have had this happen twice in last 45 years. Had it not have been for Roscoe's training I would not have thought of it. Both of mine resulted in a failure to fire.

On a semi auto rifle this little piece of primer can wedge the firing pin forward so when the bolt is closing the firing pin is in the forward position as the bolt closes and the rifle fires again with the bolt out of battery. This can really ruin your day.

I have never had that happen but Roscoe said it could. It makes it more of a problem when it fires without the bolt being locked into battery. The gun blows up and in all the (for lack of a better term) excitement the little piece of primer disappears(or is never looked for) which is why you need to see the primers of the previous shots fired in a blown rifle to see if any have been blanked (primer disc punched out backwards) in a rifle that sustained a catastrophic failure.

A blanked primer will generally be seen in a round that has cooked off due to high barrel temp as there is no firing pin protruding into primer to hold it in place.

That is why when my buddy had his Garand let go (below pic) I told him to send me all the cases fired that day and he did and there was no evidence of excessive headspace or excessive pressure, reverse primer flow and no blanked primers.



On the M16 early models the back of the firing pin had a big steel knob and when rounds were chambered the heavy floating firing pin continued forward and "ticked" the primer and tended to ignite the chambered round so they made the primer cups heavier and lightened the firing pin and that went away.

That one was easy as a case ignited from a "tick off" has evidence of reverse flow or a blanked primer and of course did not blow the rifle up but also tended to give birth to the little disk pieces of primer going into the firing pin opening and could cause the problem in the above paragraph.

I got a new Remington 7615 (the 5.56 model that uses AR mags) and with M193 I was getting evidence that the primer wanted to go into the bolt face. I had the copper holders and the coppers so I checked the striker energy and it confirmed there was not enough striker energy delivered to hold the primer in till the pressure dropped off.

On the M16A1E1 test we had five failures to fire in 244,000 rounds and that created all kinds of concern as the hammer energy in the tested guns was under the energy spec for the M16. In short we had copper indents of .019 when we were supposed to be getting .022" indents. Five misfires would have been acceptable in five million rounds but not in 244,000 rounds.



Also the inside of the 7615 barrel had a crooked bore which was so crooked I could not sight it in at 100 yards as there wasn't enough adjustment in the scope. I sent it back to Remington and they replaced the barrel but did not change the hammer spring or if they did it was no better than the original as I tested it again when it got "home".

I contacted Wolff Springs and got a new hammer spring, replaced it and no more cratered primers. Now had I not been using M193 ammo with the MILSPEC heavy cup primers the odds of getting a blanked primer would have really gone high.

I would never load 223 or 5.56 without MILSPEC primers for the reasons I am covering here.

The rule of thumb is primers like to be hit HARD and FAST. Remove one of them and you get into problems quick.

The Smith & Wesson L Frame had the same problem in mid 80s where the primer cup had a reverse flow into the firing pin hole and locked them up. The cylinder would not rotate as he primer extrusion locked it in place and cylinder would not turn. That was the reason for the nationwide recall of the L Frames where they installed a smaller diameter hammer nose (firing pin). It only happened on the L Frames, not the J, K or N frames.
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Last edited by Humpy; 05-01-2017 at 01:12 AM.
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Old 04-30-2017, 10:23 PM
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This is the first time I've heard that the firing pin is in charge of holding the primer in place and also the first I've heard that a light strike can lead to a primer blowing, seems backwards. I've had light strike issues on a couple guns and didn't see any signs of problems with the primers other than shallow dents.
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Old 05-01-2017, 12:32 AM
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Restricted Colt,

What was the copper indent depths of the rifles you identified as having a "light strike"?

I have seen it more in Smith & Wesson revolvers because guys did not like the heavy double action pulls so they took the supplied screwdriver and started backing off the screw on the bottom of the frame on the front side making the trigger pull lighter.

They will still fire but the primers exhibit light strikes and ammo still fires so they apply what I call the "lightbulb principle" which is if the light comes on the bulb is good which they translate to "it went off six times so we are good to go".

It shows up quickly in 357 magnum revolvers, when the strain screw gets loosened and magnum ammo is fired the indents become lighter followed by cratered primers followed by "I can't get the cylinder open." and they get weak in the knees when their favorite gunsmith whacks the cylinder with a lead hammer and beats the cylinder open and they see where the primer has pushed the hammer nose back and chased it up into the opening and the revolver can no longer be cocked or fired.

You can achieve the same thing in a bolt action rifle by taking the firing pin spring out and grinding off half a coil at a time and continuing to shoot and watch the primer indent get shallower as the spring is cut off which will eventually lead to a reverse flow into firing pin opening and continued shortening will cause the center of the primer to disappear. When that happens you may find the piece inside the firing pin galley or you may not as it might just fall away.

It gets worse, when that happens the hot gases will ruin the front of your firing pin nose and it is no longer nice and smooth and rounded but shows a crater. If it is damaged enough you will get sharp edges inside the primer indent and it will happen again and again and by the way replacing firing pins in bolt rifles is much more expensive than replacing a firing pin spring.

Lots of pin noses were ruined on Rem 700s and Mod 70s when 5.56 came on the scene and reloaders did not know about the heavy cup MILSPEC primers. I know a guy who ruined two 700 bolt faces by failed primers which were not heavy cupped.

If you look at a Wolff Spring catalog you will see they offer a "factory dupe spring" and then ones having more energy and then there is another one that will give even more energy. As I said, primers have to be hit hard and fast to be reliable. The only time I order a factory dupe spring is when they don't make a heavier one which is what I had to do with my Rem 7615. As I said, when I put the new hammer spring in the 7615 the reverse flows never occurred again. Had I been loading standard small rifle primers I would have ruined the firing pin nose and or the bolt face.

On a bolt gun if you don't have copper holders and coppers about the only thing you can do is get a new "stronger spring" and before installing it measure the "free length" which means before you put the spring in measure the length end to end with a caliper and record it. Then every six months or so pull it out and measure it again and see if it is getting shorter. If it does the spring did not get the right heat treat and has taken a "set". Spring engineers will tell you a "properly made springs will never take a set". I have a M1911 Swiss straight pull that gives .022 indent and had a La Corona 98 Mauser that gave .024" indent and it was made in the 50s. I have never had a US made rifle give me such indent energy.
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Last edited by Humpy; 05-01-2017 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 05-06-2017, 03:42 AM
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Check this out.

Page 2 third post down shows a head failure on 223 round. Look closely at the edge of the firing pin indent and you will see a cratering around the edge. You can expect this on a high pressure round but if you get it and there is no other signs of high pressure (primer flat at edge, case head wanting to crawl into ejector opening etc ) then the chances of your striker energy being low is quite good which a tad more to the rear the center of the primer will be ejected into the firing pin alley. I was having this happen on a 30-30 when I was in high school and did not realize what was happening. Then I learned that Mod 94 Winchesters have hammer springs on lots of them that were soft and I gave up on 94s for that reason. Also dry firing them will pooch out the bolt face around the firing pin opening ! ! ! ! !

https://www.shootersforum.com/handlo...ml#post1658041
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