Shooters Forum banner

1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
It seems like I could find a discussion on this, but I haven't. I understand why a piston driven rifle is more reliable, but not in ways most of us who clean our guns will appreciate. And there's also the benefit of not having gas dumped near your face, especially if you're running a suppressor.

I'd call piston drive a slight advantage. But isn't it strange how unavailable piston rifles are? Everything i find is direct impingement. This includes parts for snapping one together.

I want to build a KM18 style rifle with a suppressor, but I thought it would be cool to do it with piston drive. I've found two outfits making piston system, but it seems like they're a seriously small minority. The only piston AR's I find are .308 chambered.

Why? Piston system seem so much cooler. What's up with this?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Because that's what the original AR15 used; that design was adopted by the military. Military adoption creates civilian popularity and military surplus that can be sold for cheap. That's the short of it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,216 Posts
The AR was designed to be cheaply built, mostly stamped parts. But today the AR rifles are not cheap. The AR crowd really doesn't understand firearms, so direct impingement is fine with them.

The Ruger Mini is a piston operated, clean design, much better made. It has a fixed-piston gas system and self-cleaning moving gas cylinder . But it isn't cool with the under 40 group.

The AR is sold on 'tactical looks' not quality. Hence the nic-name 'Made by Mattel'.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
There's a lot of piston guns out there, just not so many in the AR category. The AR was designed around a DI system. It's kinda like going to Glock and asking why there aren't any revolvers.

Most of the manufacturers focus on mil spec parts, so they are interchangeable. This is one of the big attractions to the AR. Going to piston operated means speciality parts. It not bad to go the piston route, but you can't use generic mil-spec parts to do it.

If you really want a piston driven AR, check out Patriot Ordnance Factory, LWRC, or Lewis Machine Tool. Adcor Defense has one I really like, with a charging system similar to an HK design, but I no nothing about their quality.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
The AR was designed to be cheaply built, mostly stamped parts. But today the AR rifles are not cheap. The AR crowd really doesn't understand firearms, so direct impingement is fine with them.
I think a fair share of AR owners are fad purchases. Everyone has one but me, so to speak, and it goes in a closet after a session on the indoor range, never to be seen again.

But there are also a lot of AR fans that know exactly what they are doing, and they stay with a DI system for their collection. It's simple, easy to maintain, and can be exceptional for accuracy, durability, and reliability. Options and modifications are infinite.
 
  • Like
Reactions: MZ5

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,484 Posts
I think a fair share of AR owners are fad purchases. Everyone has one but me, so to speak, and it goes in a closet after a session on the indoor range, never to be seen again.

But there are also a lot of AR fans that know exactly what they are doing, and they stay with a DI system for their collection. It's simple, easy to maintain, and can be exceptional for accuracy, durability, and reliability. Options and modifications are infinite.
IF Properly Maintained.
Viet Nam provided a long list of examples of how NOT to maintain one in proper firing order.

Many have died depending on o poorly maintained one.

Chev. William
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
119 Posts
Made by Mattel was one of the nicer things they were called when first issued. Those weapons were the reason I still can’t abide a black gun or weapon. Fine caliber for shooting groundhogs not so good for battle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
410 Posts
My main concern for a piston powered AR is replacement parts. Each piston system is different, nothing interchangeable about them. If the company you bought your parts from stops making them you are in a bad way.
DI is dirty but as long as you maintain it they work. You can get small parts to replace worn parts and it is back in action. I keep a "wear parts" supply in stock which is a good idea for all your guns.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,514 Posts
To Harry SS
I didn't realize there were any stamped parts on an AR-15, which ones?
You can buy several well made AR's like the MP-15 for less than a mini-14
I understand firearms pretty well.
I'm way over 40 and after having a couple of mini's would not describe them as "cool" whatever that means.
I'm not crazy about the looks of the AR but I've never seen a mini that could best one in accuracy which is my prerequisite in a rifle, looks are secondary.
Those pre-A2 guns did feel like they were made by a toy company, they haven't made those in 30 years, todays guns are like a completely different rifle.
To shooterPaul, you nailed it.
It's hard to believe people are still talking about the AR/M-16 vietnam era guns and it's problems, that was 50 years ago.
Modern Ar's are an accurate versatile rifle chambered in a plethora of cartridges the semi-auto's of yesteryear never were, are they perfect, no, there is no such thing as a perfect rifle. They are different from most other rifles though in that they continue to evolve, my first one was a 1989 Colt H-bar, it was was far and away a better gun than my fathers 1969 gun. The three sporters I have now are much more accurate out of the box than my 1989 match gun and so the improvements continue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
IF Properly Maintained.
I have all sorts of firearms. Some might sustain poor maintenance longer than others, but they will all stop working eventually with lack of, or improper maintenance. Within my collection, the AR's are by far the easiest to maintain, and repair. The snag with the AR's is that it's easy to consume so much ammunition relative to other formats and designs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
410 Posts
TMan,
I grew up shooting bolt rifles. When I started using ARs I fired them the same way I fire a bolt, SLOW.
I aim at a 1" bull and move the trigger. I don't go through ammo fast. I did have an incident once while trying the advice to just release the trigger to the reset point - to make the pull easier. My gun bump fired twice after pulling the trigger once. I didn't like that because; 1. it shocked and surprised me and 2. my group was more like a pattern.
If I need a lighter pull I will buy a new trigger group.
I like tiny groups.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
I never owned anything but a bolt rifle for about 50 years. I was sure I'd never bother with an auto handgun or rifle except for .22's. Never say never. Now I have all sorts of auto's in the basement.

Actually, I don't get any thrills out of the "magdump" thing myself, but it's easy to go through 50 rounds shooting offhand or sitting at 100/200yds at clay birds on the backstop. I rarely take more along these days as I don't see any replacement supplies on the horizon.
I develop handgun and rifle loads from a rest, but when the load is tuned, I rarely do that again except for periodic checks, and "pre-hunt insurance".
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,514 Posts
I got a triple on called in coyotes once and have gotten doubles quite a few times with an AR, pretty hard to do that with a bolt gun. It's easy to loose track of the second one if you have to work the bolt. Nothing beats a suppressed AR if I'm shooting where I can use one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,132 Posts
Nothing beats a suppressed AR if I'm shooting where I can use one.
K, assuming you're using a 5.56/.223, do you use "regular" coyote ammo, or do you have a subsonic load that works well?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,514 Posts
T man, I've never been able to get a subsonic load to cycle the action on an AR excepting a 22lr, I use a Silencerco Harvester that has a brake on the end.
This isn't a thread about suppressors so I won't go to far off track but here's what I've found and I'll say ahead of time this is purely anecdotal, for the average person like myself I believe that when firing a rifle the concussion overloads your senses for fractions of a second. You wouldn't notice it unless your shooting quickly with a scope mounted semi-auto.
There are people that seem to be immune to this like Jerry Miculek and the late Tom Knapp but most would consider them to be way out of the ordinary.
Follow up shots and the chance at multiple targets when varmint hunting make an AR a good rifle for that application, it's a great rifle with a suppressor on the end with a integral brake because your body doesn't have to deal with the concussion or muzzle rise.
I don't know if it's because of the ball powder I use or what but it takes less than 100 rounds before there's enough carbon blown back into the action to cause stoppages, a piston gun would solve that problem but there's no standard design an I rarely shoot more than 50 rounds before cleaning anyway.
I've made a few changes to this gun since taking this picture but it's basically the same.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
My main concern for a piston powered AR is replacement parts. Each piston system is different, nothing interchangeable about them.
This is a good point. You talked me out of building a piston driven AR.

I have a Springfield Saint, 16" barrel. It's really nice, and although I'm a right-handed shooter, I end up breathing a lot of gas, especially indoors at the shooting range.

I want to build a MK18 stile AR, with a suppressor. I'll get an adjustable gas block for that one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
It seems like I could find a discussion on this, but I haven't. I understand why a piston driven rifle is more reliable, but not in ways most of us who clean our guns will appreciate. And there's also the benefit of not having gas dumped near your face, especially if you're running a suppressor.

I'd call piston drive a slight advantage. But isn't it strange how unavailable piston rifles are? Everything i find is direct impingement. This includes parts for snapping one together.

I want to build a KM18 style rifle with a suppressor, but I thought it would be cool to do it with piston drive. I've found two outfits making piston system, but it seems like they're a seriously small minority. The only piston AR's I find are .308 chambered.

Why? Piston system seem so much cooler. What's up with this?
Because there is absolutely nothing wrong with DI driven AR's if they are properly cleaned and maintained. Not knocking piston actions, but one doesn't need to denigrate one action to favor another. It's called choices.
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Top