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View Full Version : Advice: reliability upgrades for a carbine


reidnez
10-08-2009, 12:20 AM
Granted, I should probably take the new upper to the range for a test-fire before I start swapping out parts, but I like to tinker...

Thinking of getting an "H" buffer, a BCM bolt/carrier and an O-ring for the extractor spring, if it doesn't come with one.

Any other suggestions? I've read a couple of things about the "enhanced" carrier for carbines (LMT I think). Any experience with these and would it be worthwhile?

Anything I haven't thought of yet?

SCMA-1
10-08-2009, 7:02 AM
M16 carrier adds a bit more weight and smooths/slows the cyclic rate just a tad.

Tragic Image
10-08-2009, 9:52 AM
KNS Anti Walk Pins...


or we talking just about the upper?

missiontrails
10-08-2009, 10:00 AM
Good lube, 5.2oz 9mm buffer, good extractor spring and insert. M16 carrier not necessary for reliability. In fact, the slightly lighter SA carrier hitting a heavier buffer adds smoothness. This is all assuming you have a carbine that is over-gased like most.

SMGLee
10-08-2009, 10:07 AM
Granted, I should probably take the new upper to the range for a test-fire before I start swapping out parts, but I like to tinker...

Thinking of getting an "H" buffer, a BCM bolt/carrier and an O-ring for the extractor spring, if it doesn't come with one.

Any other suggestions? I've read a couple of things about the "enhanced" carrier for carbines (LMT I think). Any experience with these and would it be worthwhile?

Anything I haven't thought of yet?

LMT enhanced bolt carrier is not really worth the money, it has no real added function and the dual spring set up are harder to find replacement parts for. I have run them since the day they were released, it was fine, but it really does not do anything more than a standard mil-spec correct extractor spring carrier group with a o-ring.

Few upgrades I would suggest..

make sure you have a good bolt, make sure it is MP tested. if not, get your self a BCM bolt, they are equipped with the o-ring as it is.

you could go for a buffer upgrade... the H-Buffer is not a bad idea, it will help slow down the cyclic rate even in semi auto.

Buy good magazines...use good ammo..I always see guys complain about how unreliable the Ar15 is and see the 5.00 gun show junk mag shooting Wolf ammo..

anything other than those two.. its just gravy on top....


Chen

SuperSet
10-08-2009, 10:15 AM
I've always liked this article by Michael Pannone as it outlines known issues with the M4 and how to best mitigate them.
http://www.defensereview.com/m4m4a1-carbine-reliability-issues-why-they-occur-and-why-theyre-our-fault/

reidnez
10-08-2009, 10:16 AM
LMT enhanced bolt carrier is not really worth the money, it has no real added function and the dual spring set up are harder to find replacement parts for. I have run them since the day they were released, it was fine, but it really does not do anything more than a standard mil-spec correct extractor spring carrier group with a o-ring.

Few upgrades I would suggest..

make sure you have a good bolt, make sure it is MP tested. if not, get your self a BCM bolt, they are equipped with the o-ring as it is.

you could go for a buffer upgrade... the H-Buffer is not a bad idea, it will help slow down the cyclic rate even in semi auto.

Buy good magazines...use good ammo..I always see guys complain about how unreliable the Ar15 is and see the 5.00 gun show junk mag shooting Wolf ammo..

anything other than those two.. its just gravy on top....


Chen


OK thanks, that seems to be the ticket. I was leaning towards the BCI carrier because it checks all the boxes (MPI, shot-peened, well-staked) and it's not crazy expensive. Nice to know it has the O-ring also.

I only ever use USGI magazines, for $10-15 apiece I don't see why anybody would use something cheaper :rolleyes:. But, there are those people out there who will handicap a $1,000 gun with a $5 magazine.

reidnez
10-08-2009, 10:20 AM
I've always liked this article by Michael Pannone as it outlines known issues with the M4 and how to best mitigate them.
http://www.defensereview.com/m4m4a1-carbine-reliability-issues-why-they-occur-and-why-theyre-our-fault/

Awesome, detailed info! I love finding stuff like this. Going in the bookmarks. Thanks!!

He makes some really good points about military units neglecting maintenance. I can definitely vouch for that after being sent to Ramadi with a brand-new (still in packing grease!) M16AA4, a brand-new ACOG, and a random handful of old magazines from some box in the depths of the armory (some even had the dreaded black followers). I had no idea which were good and which were bad and no opportunity to test them. When we finally went to the range to sight in our fancy new boomsticks--already in country, mind you--I found that two of those magazines would reliably doublefeed, like clockwork. It's a good thing I didn't discover that on a two-way range, as I'm sure countless others have. :(

missiontrails
10-08-2009, 1:04 PM
LMT enhanced bolt carrier is not really worth the money, it has no real added function and the dual spring set up are harder to find replacement parts for. I have run them since the day they were released, it was fine, but it really does not do anything more than a standard mil-spec correct extractor spring carrier group with a o-ring.

Few upgrades I would suggest..

make sure you have a good bolt, make sure it is MP tested. if not, get your self a BCM bolt, they are equipped with the o-ring as it is.

you could go for a buffer upgrade... the H-Buffer is not a bad idea, it will help slow down the cyclic rate even in semi auto.

Buy good magazines...use good ammo..I always see guys complain about how unreliable the Ar15 is and see the 5.00 gun show junk mag shooting Wolf ammo..

anything other than those two.. its just gravy on top....


Chen

Got news for you, using an H over the standard buffer makes little to NO noticable difference.