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Old July 08, 2013, 01:12   #1
Aeroscout
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14.5 inch Barrel M4..Shot groups not Impressive

I put together an RGUNS 14.5 inch barreled M4 (with pinned and welded BCM extended birdcage to bring to 16.1 OAL).

I took it to the range and I must say the groups were not so impressive. 3 shot groups were 3 inches or so at 50 yards with open sights. Would have been a little better but it always seemed to throw at least one way out there.

Do these things take a little time to settle in and start shooting decent or should they bang right out of the box so to speak?

I shot both wolf 55gr HP's and some 55gr prvi FMJ with the same results. Next time I will take some Federal...but still...I would have expected better.

Please tell me these things take a few rounds to settle in.
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Old July 08, 2013, 03:23   #2
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Wolf and privi? Not exactly match ammo
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Old July 08, 2013, 04:54   #3
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Wolf and privi? Not exactly match ammo
No I don't suppose it is...however I have fired that ammo out of other AR's with more than adequate results....much better than what I am seeing here.
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Old July 08, 2013, 06:08   #4
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They should shoot well out of the box at that range. If my otherwise-correctly-assembled14.5s were shooting like that at 50 benched I'd wonder how I got to the range so drunk. Or at least check my sight/optic integrity or mount.
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Old July 08, 2013, 06:11   #5
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Originally Posted by Fn/form View Post
They should shoot well out of the box at that range. If my otherwise-correctly-assembled14.5s were shooting like that at 50 benched I'd wonder how I got to the range so drunk. Or at least check my sight/optic integrity or mount.
Open sights...securely attached.....same result with strikefire RD.
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Old July 08, 2013, 06:18   #6
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What's the twist? If it's 1in7 you'll need some 62gr ammo. Most
of the 14.5 M4's IIRC are all set up for M855.
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Old July 08, 2013, 06:19   #7
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What's the twist? If it's 1in7 you'll need some 62gr ammo. Most
of the 14.5 M4's IIRC are all set up for M855.
I am not at home right now but I will double check...I believe they are 1:9
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Old July 08, 2013, 06:31   #8
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What's the twist? If it's 1in7 you'll need some 62gr ammo. Most
of the 14.5 M4's IIRC are all set up for M855.
I would be very, very surprised if this affected 50yd performance. One of my 14.5s shot .33" at 100 w/55gr, and generally both rifles shoot under .5" at that distance with good ammo.

Both shoot tight at 50yds with any 55-75gr I've used.
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Old July 08, 2013, 06:52   #9
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possibaly messed up the crown when attaching the flash hider
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Old July 08, 2013, 07:05   #10
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possibaly messed up the crown when attaching the flash hider
I seriously doubt it...Sledgehammer installed them....(I have two but have only shot one)
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Old July 08, 2013, 07:13   #11
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I did screw the barrels on myself but I don't see how that should matter...It is really as simple as putting on the barrel so the pin lines up in the uppers groove...tighten till its just snug then keep going till the next groove in the ring thingamjiggy lines up for the gas tube right? Don't see how it could be any different. I saw the torque specs but don't really see how they are relevant....once snug you have to keep going or its too loose so you can only do one thing once its snug...keep going till the next gas tube hole lines up.

Or am I on crack?
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Old July 08, 2013, 08:08   #12
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Yeah, that's how the install usually goes, torque wrench or not. I still use a torque wrench.

30ft lbs was the minimum given during my Colt Armorer's course. The going consensus is the least amount of torque above 30ft lbs for best accuracy and least stress on upper during install. No more than 80 ft lbs.

Any access to chamber gauges or OAL gauges/tool? If I had a personal set I'd let you borrow it.
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Old July 08, 2013, 08:12   #13
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Torque value of the barrel nut is relevant. If it's too loose, point of impact will wander. The proper way to torque the barrel nut is to apply thread lube then torque the nut 30-80 ft/lbs three times. On the final torque, torque to 30 ft/lbs and see if the nut lines up to allow the gas tube to pass through. If not, keep torquing until it does but not exceeding 80 ft/lbs.

Make sure you do the math to get the torque setting right for the overall length of wrench plus tool, or keep the tool 90 degrees to the torque wrench.

Also, do not over torque the muzzle device. Over torquing the muzzle device will distort the bore
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Old July 08, 2013, 08:13   #14
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Originally Posted by Fn/form View Post
Yeah, that's how the install usually goes, torque wrench or not. I still use a torque wrench.

30ft lbs was the minimum given during my Colt Armorer's course. The going consensus is the least amount of torque above 30ft lbs for best accuracy and least stress on upper during install. No more than 80 ft lbs.

Any access to chamber gauges or OAL gauges/tool? If I had a personal set I'd let you borrow it.
How can they say no more than 80?....you are either lined up with the hole beyond snug...or you are not....you have no choice after just snug but to tighten it till the holes line up regardless of torque....unless you are going to start shaving some metal.

I asked about having them timed and headspaced while they were in getting the FH's pinned and welded....I was told there is nothing to headspace...screw them on and shoot them....considering the source I find it difficult to believe otherwise.

ETA: I did do the tighten loosen 3 times with lube on the threads thing.

PS....I confirmed the twist...5.56 1:9 RGUNS 14.5 inch barrel
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Old July 08, 2013, 15:44   #15
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Could just be a shitty barrel mate, I am sure every maker has made a lemon at some point.
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Old July 08, 2013, 16:26   #16
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how do you over torque the FH with a crush washer?
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Old July 08, 2013, 18:03   #17
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I never got good groups from my 10.5 AR upper.
Usually about four inches for a 5-shot group at 100 yards with Leupold 3x9 scope off a bench.

Meantime, my 20-inch gun was shooting easily half that size group with TWENTY SHOTS, and iron sights at 100 yards from prone, and using just a service-rifle sling for support.

Don't expect that shorty AR to be much of a tack driver.
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Old July 08, 2013, 18:12   #18
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Appreciate the responses...I think first thing first I need to try some Federal 5.56 and .223 and see what happens. I think I have some Winchester 45gr varmint rounds I can try as well. Right now this thing is competing with my mini-14 for king of the pie plate.
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Old July 08, 2013, 20:37   #19
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Hell every AR I have shoots way better than that..
You sure you didn't use a MINI-14 Barrel??
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Old July 09, 2013, 04:15   #20
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How can they say no more than 80?....you are either lined up with the hole beyond snug...or you are not....you have no choice after just snug but to tighten it till the holes line up regardless of torque....unless you are going to start shaving some metal.

I asked about having them timed and headspaced while they were in getting the FH's pinned and welded....I was told there is nothing to headspace...screw them on and shoot them....considering the source I find it difficult to believe otherwise.

ETA: I did do the tighten loosen 3 times with lube on the threads thing.

PS....I confirmed the twist...5.56 1:9 RGUNS 14.5 inch barrel
"Headspace" is the interface between the bolt, chamber and the barrel extension. The extension is the threaded collar with the alignment pin on the end of the barrel. It assumes an in-spec bolt is used. Most barrels come with the extension, and it's headspaced when installed. Hence the comment about not needing headspace checks. An out-of spec barrel/extension combo or bolt can affect accuracy and possibly safety.

As far as the barrel nut torque goes... there are some oddball alignments out there. Like anything commercial, anything goes when combining a mechanical system of different components--receiver, barrel nut, etc. They all have tolerances and possible problems from the "factory".

There are a bunch of ways of dealing with alignment problems. Re-torquing X times, lapping, trying different barrel nuts, etc.
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Old July 09, 2013, 04:25   #21
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I never got good groups from my 10.5 AR upper.
Usually about four inches for a 5-shot group at 100 yards with Leupold 3x9 scope off a bench.

Meantime, my 20-inch gun was shooting easily half that size group with TWENTY SHOTS, and iron sights at 100 yards from prone, and using just a service-rifle sling for support.

Don't expect that shorty AR to be much of a tack driver.

Scoped, the barrel length shouldn't matter. Especially at 100yds. Mike Heath @ Colt will tell you all day long about qualifying at 500m with a 10.5".
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Old July 09, 2013, 12:17   #22
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Old July 09, 2013, 12:23   #23
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I have an M4 barrel similiar (1/9 twist but I did not get it from RGUNS)to what you described and it will not shoot any 55gr ammo well, period. In fact an Army standard 25m zero is impossible to achieve with it using 55gr fodder.

The heavier bullets shoot ok (not great but acceptable accuracy, you can zero it). I ended up purchasing a new barrel, problem solved. I figured it had to be a manufacturing defect but everything upon visual check looked good (crown, chamber, rifling).

If you have a detachable rear sight, check it first or swap it out with another if you have one just to see if there is a difference. In my case, it was just a sorry barrel. There is a lot of junk out there these days.
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Old July 09, 2013, 13:40   #24
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(two targets)
55gr training ammo, scoped. Nice. You know better than that.
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Old July 09, 2013, 14:47   #25
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55gr training ammo, scoped. Nice. You know better than that.
That upper came from J&T.
OEM handguards replaced with free-float cheese-grater rail.
I played with it for about three years, and then returned it to its original owner.

It didn't shoot measurably better with 77 grain Black Hills (with or w/o the suppressor).
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Old July 09, 2013, 14:53   #26
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I'm sure somebody has a shorty AR that shoots real tight groups at reasonable distances.

I just haven't encountered one personally yet.
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Old July 09, 2013, 19:39   #27
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I'm sure somebody has a shorty AR that shoots real tight groups at reasonable distances.

I just haven't encountered one personally yet.
I'm not familiar with J&T, what's their forte?

With the exception of an early Bushmaster, all my AR barrels have been procured by LMT, FN, Colt and WOA. I haven't had a bad experience yet. Guess I'm due.
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Old July 09, 2013, 20:50   #28
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I'm not familiar with J&T, what's their forte?
They've been selling a bunches of built of uppers for years.

Long-time banner advertiser on ARFCOM.

May now be one-and-the-same as Doublestar.
The Doublestar dragon logo is all over the J&T webpages these days.
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Old July 09, 2013, 21:54   #29
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I never got good groups from my 10.5 AR upper.
Usually about four inches for a 5-shot group at 100 yards with Leupold 3x9 scope off a bench.

Meantime, my 20-inch gun was shooting easily half that size group with TWENTY SHOTS, and iron sights at 100 yards from prone, and using just a service-rifle sling for support.

Don't expect that shorty AR to be much of a tack driver.
Dude ... I agree most of the time with you, but he said it was 14.5 and I get excellent results out of 14.5 barrels. That is the shortest I agree with and thus I agree with you but it is a 10.5 barrel he is talking about.

If Sledgehammer did the work, call him. He will make it right.. The man is beyond reproach for his work.
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Old July 10, 2013, 14:50   #30
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If Sledgehammer did the work, call him. He will make it right.. The man is beyond reproach for his work.
I'm not sure how Randy (Sledgehammer) is supposed to be part of this.

To my knowledge, Randy had no involvement whatsoever with the assembly of the J&T upper of which I have spoken, or with the "RGuns" kit-build mentioned by the OP.
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Old July 10, 2013, 15:11   #31
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I'm not sure how Randy (Sledgehammer) is supposed to be part of this.

To my knowledge, Randy had no involvement whatsoever with the assembly of the J&T upper of which I have spoken, or with the "RGuns" kit-build mentioned by the OP.
Reference posts #1(mention of pinned FH to achieve 16"), #9(crown ding theory concerning #1), & #10(mention of sledgehammer doing #1, ergo #9 not likely,) post #30 responding to your shorty, but also referring back to #1/#9/#10 with assurance that if #9 did happen to be the case(however unlikely) then #10 would make good on it.
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Old July 15, 2013, 08:53   #32
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For some reason on some of my threads I don't get the notifications that there has been replies to my post....this thread is one of them...???

So I missed some of the last posts here. First and foremost I have absolutely no reservations about the work Randy has done for me and do not even remotely consider it to be a factor in any way shape or form to the issue I am having...period.

Second...I shot the thing again this weekend and the first few groups it was doing the same thing with the prvi ammo...crappy groups at 25 yards this time. I shot probably 4-5 three shot groups and they were about 2 inches or so. Usually with two pretty close and one that was out there.

Switched to Federal M193 5.56 and presto clover leafs. I zeroed my irons and my red dot and all of my groups from that point on were what I would have expected from the get go. Strange thing is that after I had finished zeroing with the M193 I shot a couple more groups with the prvi and both of those were in the zone as well.

I don't know what is to be made of that but like my Dad advised me...maybe it just needed a few rounds down the pipe to settle in even though I have received advise that this is not usually the case. I have plenty of each type of ammo left, so we'll see how it does again next time. But for the time being I am confident that my 14.5 inch RGUNS carbine will drive nails with decent ammo.

Thanks for ya'lls input and I'll post up again with the next outings results.
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Old July 21, 2013, 16:51   #33
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Ran across a photo of shots from my 14.5" AR. BCM-built upper and BCG; forged barrel, DD Lite 12.0 rail, BCE 1.5.

Ammo was Mk318 Mod0, 2890fps avg, 200yd target, 6.5x magnification benched, April 2013. One shot is pooched out because it was on the fiberboard backer.

I was sighting a new scope. Rough zero at 50yds, about 10min later shot these at 200yds. Couldn't find the three shots with my 20x binocs. Drove out to the 200yd line and found this.

It's a freak group for Mk318.


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Old July 21, 2013, 17:12   #34
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For some reason on some of my threads I don't get the notifications that there has been replies to my post....this thread is one of them...???

So I missed some of the last posts here. First and foremost I have absolutely no reservations about the work Randy has done for me and do not even remotely consider it to be a factor in any way shape or form to the issue I am having...period.

Second...I shot the thing again this weekend and the first few groups it was doing the same thing with the prvi ammo...crappy groups at 25 yards this time. I shot probably 4-5 three shot groups and they were about 2 inches or so. Usually with two pretty close and one that was out there.

Switched to Federal M193 5.56 and presto clover leafs. I zeroed my irons and my red dot and all of my groups from that point on were what I would have expected from the get go. Strange thing is that after I had finished zeroing with the M193 I shot a couple more groups with the prvi and both of those were in the zone as well.

I don't know what is to be made of that but like my Dad advised me...maybe it just needed a few rounds down the pipe to settle in even though I have received advise that this is not usually the case. I have plenty of each type of ammo left, so we'll see how it does again next time. But for the time being I am confident that my 14.5 inch RGUNS carbine will drive nails with decent ammo.

Thanks for ya'lls input and I'll post up again with the next outings results.
You have no doubt heard this before, but here I go anyway. If you have a real 5.56 chamber .223 will be a disaster mostly. Got a DPMS oracle for my son, He couldn't hit a barn with it. got him on 855 ammo and hes dropping yotes at 250 yds.
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Old July 22, 2013, 10:01   #35
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Well... there's as significant a difference in individual barrel/extension/bolt interface as there is in chamber dimension.

My 5.56 chambers do well with .223/55 inside of 100 for sure, every bit as good as the heavier bullets. And it works well well with any >69gr .223 SMK/ TAP as well.

There are many trusims in ballistics, but sometimes it can simply depend on the particular combo at hand.
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Old July 22, 2013, 16:21   #36
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My ARs

I have a Colt AR with 1/7 twist 20 inch Gov profile barrel that won't shoot Wolf or any of the cheap steel case well. Very accurate with 5.56 Fed. 55 grain.
My Wylde chamber RockRiver 1/9 barrel shoots everything well.
My Sabre 5.56 labeled 1/8 barrel shoots everything well, I don't know what the chamber is..
I have an 11.5 5.56 barrel on a pistol but haven't grouped it yet..
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Old July 24, 2013, 01:18   #37
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Assuming the crown is GTG my 1:9 barreled guns prefer 55gr, my 1:7 guns group better with 62gr ammo.
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Old July 24, 2013, 01:27   #38
gates
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FN - nice shooting.
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Old July 24, 2013, 07:13   #39
Aeroscout
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Originally Posted by Bladewurk View Post
My Wylde chamber RockRiver 1/9 barrel shoots everything well.
..
My Wylde chamber 16 stainless (Wilson from what I understand) lead lapped PSA is throwing shit all over the place worse than the 14.5 was. I have tried wolf, prvi, Federal .223 and Federal M193 5.56 and none of them are any better than the other.
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Old July 24, 2013, 11:50   #40
biyf
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I have some Federal M855 we can try through it next time out.
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Old July 24, 2013, 19:20   #41
Aeroscout
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I have some Federal M855 we can try through it next time out.
It's a 1:8 barrel...you'd think 55gr would do just fine....appreciate the offer....when are we going?
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Old July 24, 2013, 19:40   #42
Fn/form
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FN - nice shooting.
Thanks. That was bench shooting, and good 2-stage triggers are a huge help.

Wish I had time right now to tune up my prone skillz...
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