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Old 09-10-2017, 04:35 PM
goodoboy goodoboy is offline
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Default Things to do after purchase

Hello,

Well, I just purchased the MP-15 Sport (Rebates | Smith & Wesson) I also purchase cleaning tools ,oils, cleaning liquid, and 100 rounds. See attached.

First time shooter and owner. I have shot once before friend ar-15. The folks at Academy spent about 1 hour going over operations of the rifle.

Currently reading the manual.

Do you have any recommendations for me before going out shooting at the outdoor range?

Thank you
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:00 PM
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More ammo. It's a lot of fun. I didn't want to stop and wanted to go back the next day.
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:04 PM
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You're on the right track with reading the manual! Amazing to me how many folks don't do that first thing with an unfamiliar gun.

Do a field-strip and reassembly as part of your familiarization, along with a light, pro-forma cleaning. Then -- yeah, get more ammo! ;-)
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:04 PM
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More ammo. It's a lot of fun. I didn't want to stop and wanted to go back the next day.
Thanks TurkTide,

Do you purchase the cheapest (.223 and 5.56) you can find?

Thanks
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Pisgah View Post

Do a field-strip and reassembly as part of your familiarization, along with a light, pro-forma cleaning.
Thanks Pisgah

What is field-strip and reassembly mean?

Thanks
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by goodoboy View Post
Thanks TurkTide,

Do you purchase the cheapest (.223 and 5.56) you can find?

Thanks
I'm new to AR and on the advice of these fine folks, I ordered in bulk from Palmetto on sale.

I ordered this: Independence 5.56 NATO 55gr FMJ Ammunition 20rds - XM193I

With the rebate and after shipping, it brought the cost down to about a quarter a round.
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by goodoboy View Post
Thanks Pisgah

What is field-strip and reassembly mean?

Thanks
You're going to partially disassemble the rifle and check, clean, and re-lube the parts that need it. Then you'll put everything back together and work the charging handle a few times. It's in the manual on how to do all of this.
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Old 09-10-2017, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurkTide View Post
I'm new to AR and on the advice of these fine folks, I ordered in bulk from Palmetto on sale.

I ordered this: Independence 5.56 NATO 55gr FMJ Ammunition 20rds - XM193I

With the rebate and after shipping, it brought the cost down to about a quarter a round.
Thank you TurkTide,

Do you practice with shooting at range with 5.56 or .223?

Thanks
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Old 09-10-2017, 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted by goodoboy View Post
Thank you TurkTide,

Do you practice with shooting at range with 5.56 or .223?

Thanks
Practice with whatever is cheapest. I mostly use .223. because you can always find the Wolf Gold .223 at great prices.
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Old 09-10-2017, 09:19 PM
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Be sure that your range does not have specific limits of what ammo you can use. Buying online / in bulk is fine, but if your range does not allow it, your money is tied up.
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Old 09-10-2017, 09:32 PM
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Practice with whatever is cheapest. I mostly use .223. because you can always find the Wolf Gold .223 at great prices.
Thanks Kadonny
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Old 09-10-2017, 09:32 PM
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Be sure that your range does not have specific limits of what ammo you can use. Buying online / in bulk is fine, but if your range does not allow it, your money is tied up.
Good point, I will call and ask them which ammo they allow before buying.
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Old 09-10-2017, 10:12 PM
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Welcome to the club of S&W rifle owners.
After reading all of the above I hope someone at your range can answer more of your questions about field stripping, cleaning, lubing and safe operation. In addition to studying the manual and getting hands on support you will know your rifle much better.
Be sure to let us know how it shoot!
Jim
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Old 09-11-2017, 02:00 AM
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There are videos online that show how to break your rifle down and clean it. You should do that and look for any part that doesn't look right. Anything malformed or with a piece on it that looks out of place. That's the first thing you should do with any new gun especially. If you have a friend that's familiar with guns you might have them help you. Or if you know a gunsmith that would treat you well you could have him check the gun. You don't want something going wrong when you fire the gun. That's how people get hurt. It's very unlikely you would have a serious problem but it's a good idea to check anyway. Learn to clean the rifle while you're at this. AR's need lots of care.

After that shoot as much as you want and have fun with it.
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Old 09-11-2017, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westie1 View Post
You're going to partially disassemble the rifle and check, clean, and re-lube the parts that need it. Then you'll put everything back together and work the charging handle a few times. It's in the manual on how to do all of this.
One thing that is usually mentioned only as an after thought is do not pull the trigger while the upper receiver is separated from the lower. The hammer impacting the thin web behind the magazine well may crack it. It can not be repaired.

The amount of cleaning and lubrication has always been a point of contention. You will learn what works well for you. I find that heavy lube when an AR is new helps the rifle "break in" without the usual malfunctions caused by running it dry.

I'm a big believer in dry firing any firearms that can be safely dry fired without damage. Not only will it help your accuracy at the range but you will get needed experience handling your rifle. First remove any ammunition from the room and check that the gun is empty. Pull the charging handle to the rear and release. Check again to make certain there is no ammunition in the room. Pick a small spot on the wall and pull the trigger while concentrating on keeping your sights aligned. Repeat. Dry firing will also point out most problems that may occur with a new gun.

Did I mention that no ammunition should be in the same room as the gun when dry firing and that you need to check that the chamber is empty?
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Old 09-11-2017, 03:16 PM
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Quote:
goodoboy wrote:
What is field-strip and reassembly mean?
Follow pages 21 and 22 of the manual to begin a "field strip" the rifle. Follow pages 27 and 28 paying attention to the photographs and the order of steps.

To reassemble the rifle, follow page 29 of the manual.

Pages 23 through 26 pertain the the handguard with Picatiny rails which are not part of your Sport II and should be ignored.
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Old 09-11-2017, 03:23 PM
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Quote:
goodoboy wrote:
Do you practice with shooting at range with 5.56 or .223?
It doesn't matter. Either will work fine in the rifle. I will pay a little extra to get ammunition made in the United States because I'd rather employ our people.

Check with the range you are going to and see what their requirements are.

If you don't reload, steel case ammunition is generally cheaper and will not harm your gun.

If you (or a friend) do reload (or are thinking of getting into it), then you want to pay the little bit extra to get boxer primed bass cases that can be reloaded.
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Old 09-11-2017, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
goodoboy wrote:
...any recommendations for me?
Yes.

After a range trip or two, people are going to start telling you that you have to replace or upgrade your:
Handguards,
Front sight base,
Grip,
Buttstock,
Bolt carrier group,
Buffer spring,
Recoil buffer, and/or
Rear sight.
In fact people who didn't know which end of the rifle to point downrange will turn out to be "experts" on what you need to change with your "entry level rifle" and they will be surprising generous spending YOUR money.

Ignore them.

Or tell them that if whatever they're recommending is so essential, they can buy it and you'll be happy to install it.

Spend a few months with the rifle and put a few hundred rounds downrange. By that time YOU will know what you like and don't like about it and what you want to spend your money to change.

I asked my sons to do that. One added a bolt-on carrying handle with A2 rear sight while my other son has not made any changes to his.
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Old 09-11-2017, 07:52 PM
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Get yourself a one piece cleaning rod, flexible pull through flexible rod (ex. Otis Kit), or a Boresnake. Those segmented cleaning rods that screw together to make one long rod can be problematic when they break. Buy yourself a CAT M4 Tool. It makes cleaning the bolt and carrier easy peasy. A couple extra mags. Ammo. A basic simple 2 point sling. A case.

Go shoot your rifle for a while as is. Once you get a feel for it, then you'll know where to spend money on furniture and parts to make the rifle fit you better.
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Old 09-11-2017, 09:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbo728 View Post
Welcome to the club of S&W rifle owners.
After reading all of the above I hope someone at your range can answer more of your questions about field stripping, cleaning, lubing and safe operation. In addition to studying the manual and getting hands on support you will know your rifle much better.
Be sure to let us know how it shoot!
Jim
Thank you jimbo,

I am reading manual, i had to work late today. Safety is always first around me. I will be sure to watch plenty youtube videos
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Old 09-11-2017, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C J View Post
There are videos online that show how to break your rifle down and clean it. You should do that and look for any part that doesn't look right. Anything malformed or with a piece on it that looks out of place. That's the first thing you should do with any new gun especially. If you have a friend that's familiar with guns you might have them help you. Or if you know a gunsmith that would treat you well you could have him check the gun. You don't want something going wrong when you fire the gun. That's how people get hurt. It's very unlikely you would have a serious problem but it's a good idea to check anyway. Learn to clean the rifle while you're at this. AR's need lots of care.

After that shoot as much as you want and have fun with it.
Thank you C J,

I will watch many videos for dis-assembly, clean , inspection, and oiling of the rifle.

But, I like the idea of having a gunsmith recheck the rifle for me as a conservative safety measure. I don't mind paying the extra cost for safety. Any recommendations of gunsmith Houston Texas area.
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Old 09-11-2017, 11:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hdwhit View Post
Yes.

After a range trip or two, people are going to start telling you that you have to replace or upgrade your:
Handguards,
Front sight base,
Grip,
Buttstock,
Bolt carrier group,
Buffer spring,
Recoil buffer, and/or
Rear sight.
In fact people who didn't know which end of the rifle to point downrange will turn out to be "experts" on what you need to change with your "entry level rifle" and they will be surprising generous spending YOUR money.

Ignore them.

Or tell them that if whatever they're recommending is so essential, they can buy it and you'll be happy to install it.

Spend a few months with the rifle and put a few hundred rounds downrange. By that time YOU will know what you like and don't like about it and what you want to spend your money to change.

I asked my sons to do that. One added a bolt-on carrying handle with A2 rear sight while my other son has not made any changes to his.
Thank you, I like and will follow this suggestion. I don't plan on spending no more money for now, just shooting.
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Old 09-12-2017, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichiganScott View Post
One thing that is usually mentioned only as an after thought is do not pull the trigger while the upper receiver is separated from the lower. The hammer impacting the thin web behind the magazine well may crack it. It can not be repaired.

The amount of cleaning and lubrication has always been a point of contention. You will learn what works well for you. I find that heavy lube when an AR is new helps the rifle "break in" without the usual malfunctions caused by running it dry.

I'm a big believer in dry firing any firearms that can be safely dry fired without damage. Not only will it help your accuracy at the range but you will get needed experience handling your rifle. First remove any ammunition from the room and check that the gun is empty. Pull the charging handle to the rear and release. Check again to make certain there is no ammunition in the room. Pick a small spot on the wall and pull the trigger while concentrating on keeping your sights aligned. Repeat. Dry firing will also point out most problems that may occur with a new gun.

Did I mention that no ammunition should be in the same room as the gun when dry firing and that you need to check that the chamber is empty?
Thank you for the warning MichiganScott of " do not pull the trigger while the upper receiver is separated from the lower."

Yes, I agree, no dry firing with ammo in the room. I will leave ammo and magazine completely out the room while dry firing practicing in the room.

I assume do not dry fire without checking , cleaning and oiling the rifles internals first?

Thanks
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Old 09-12-2017, 01:13 AM
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This is a pretty good video for new AR owners:
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Old 09-12-2017, 07:30 PM
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That is a very informative video. I'll be stripping and cleaning mine for the first time, and this really takes some of the mystery out of the process.

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Old 09-12-2017, 09:57 PM
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There are more "do-hickeys" you can bolt on an AR-15 than I can count.
Only thing I haven't seen are wheels and a bumper hitch connector.
For ammo, I really like the rounds with the "green tip" on them.
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Old 09-13-2017, 02:41 AM
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Remove the trigger, clean and lube with grease before reinstalling. Apply grease to all sear surfaces, pin holes and the bottom curve of the hammer. Any clean grease will do.

Keep a couple of spare extractor springs on hand. In my experience, Colt extractor springs have the longest life and are the most reliable.

Keep a complete spare bolt carrier group on hand. It will save you a lot of headaches.

S&W muzzle devices are longer and heavier than they need to be. Spending ten bucks or so for an A2 birdcage replacement is worth it.

Carbine weight buffers are too light. If your AR has a carbine weight, I suggest replacing it with an H or H2 buffer. H buffers have an "H" stamped I the face. The H2 has an "H2" stamp. Carbine buffers have no stamp.

The rest of it is shooting
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Old 09-13-2017, 05:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goodoboy View Post
Thank you C J,

I will watch many videos for dis-assembly, clean , inspection, and oiling of the rifle.

But, I like the idea of having a gunsmith recheck the rifle for me as a conservative safety measure. I don't mind paying the extra cost for safety. Any recommendations of gunsmith Houston Texas area.
Good for you in being very careful and reading the manual, but no need to
take a new rifle to a gunsmith and pay for him to
Check it. If it passes the function check in the manual, it's good to go. Just enjoy it.
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Old 09-13-2017, 06:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
Carbine weight buffers are too light. If your AR has a carbine weight, I suggest replacing it with an H or H2 buffer. H buffers have an "H" stamped I the face. The H2 has an "H2" stamp. Carbine buffers have no stamp.
Would you go into more detail on the above? Before I buy a different buffer, I'd like to know what it will do better than the original in my M&P Sport 2.
Thanks.
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Old 09-13-2017, 06:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kbm6893 View Post
Good for you in being very careful and reading the manual, but no need to
take a new rifle to a gunsmith and pay for him to
Check it. If it passes the function check in the manual, it's good to go. Just enjoy it.
^^^^^^^^^
What he says. It's a new gun. If you are lucky, a gunsmith would simply hand it back to you and tell you to enjoy. Or he could take it into the back room, move the charging handle back and forth a couple of times, and come back out and say that it will be $40 please.

As far as rifles go, combat style arms are built so your average soldier can do basic maintenance in the field. They are really simple machines. Although a lot of shooters like to pull the trigger and hammer out on a regular basis for cleaning, I really can't recommend it unless replacement is needed. The pins and the holes that they are in are built to tight tolerances. Remove them too often and you will destroy those tolerances and the pins will be loose in their holes.
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Old 09-13-2017, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
Remove the trigger, clean and lube with grease before reinstalling. Apply grease to all sear surfaces, pin holes and the bottom curve of the hammer. Any clean grease will do.

Keep a couple of spare extractor springs on hand. In my experience, Colt extractor springs have the longest life and are the most reliable.

Keep a complete spare bolt carrier group on hand. It will save you a lot of headaches.

S&W muzzle devices are longer and heavier than they need to be. Spending ten bucks or so for an A2 birdcage replacement is worth it.

Carbine weight buffers are too light. If your AR has a carbine weight, I suggest replacing it with an H or H2 buffer. H buffers have an "H" stamped I the face. The H2 has an "H2" stamp. Carbine buffers have no stamp.

The rest of it is shooting
Is this being serious or are you just messing around?
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Old 09-13-2017, 08:44 AM
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My man, no need to start removing triggers, pins, and whatnot. Just take out the bolt, oil it, put some lubricant on contact surfaces and go shoot it. These things are not as delicate as some make them out to be

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Old 09-13-2017, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by agksimon View Post
Would you go into more detail on the above? Before I buy a different buffer, I'd like to know what it will do better than the original in my M&P Sport 2.
Thanks.
The action of an AR requires the right amount of mass and the right amount of speed for reliable function. Changing the mass or the speed of the reciprocating parts changes the momentum of the reciprocating mass. In an AR, that mass is the bolt carrier group and the buffer.

Too much momentum and the rifle starts battering itself, resulting in harsher recoil, carrier bounce and accelerated wear. Too little momentum and the action becomes ammo sensitive and more susceptible to malfunctions due to fouling.

If you lighten the reciprocating mass by using a lighter buffer, carrier speed increases. The action will also open sooner which means the case is being extracted while bore pressures are a little higher. A stiffer spring can be used to slow the opening, but will result in faster carrier speeds as the carrier returns to battery which increases the chance of carrier bounce. Gas flow can be decreased until carrier speeds are returned to normal, but there will be less momentum.

The M4 Colt delivers to the military works. It has been refined until it delivers top notch reliability and durability under the harshest conditions. The M4 uses an H2 buffer, which, if memory serves, is slightly lighter than the rifle buffer. The H2 buffer is used because it slightly increases reliability during auto fire.

The Colt 6920 differs from the M4 only slightly. The only differences that matters to this discussion is barrel length and buffer weight. The 6920 has a barrel that's 1.5" longer than the M4 and uses an H buffer, which is lighter than the H2. Carrier bounce in a semi-auto isn't the problem it is during full auto fire because the rate of fire is much slower.

Research by Colt showed there is a difference in reliability between the various buffer weights. They originally used the carbine buffer which uses three steel weights. It proved to not be enough. The H buffer was created by substituting one steel weight for one of tungsten. This increased reliability and is perfectly fine for semi-auto use. When problems arose with bolt bounce bounce during full auto fire, they increased buffer weight further by using one steel and two tungsten weights to create the H2 buffer. It worked.

Experienced shooters have found over the years that using an H or sometimes an H2 buffer improves reliability and reduces the harshness of felt recoil. As most makers of ARs use larger than spec gas ports to ensure reliable function with ammo loaded to lower pressures, going with a heavier buffer is almost a given.

If the right gas port diameter is used, then gas flow is optimized for using either an H or H2 buffer.

An AR can be tuned to run with a lighter reciprocating mass to reduce the harshness of recoil, but the result is the AR has a much narrower span of operation and will only run reliably with the ammo it was tune for.

Bottom line, is the H or H2 buffer is the correct weight for an AR using a carbine RE and spring.

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Originally Posted by hdrolling View Post
Is this being serious or are you just messing around?
Are you suggesting that having replacement parts on hand for items that will down an AR when they fail is a joke?

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Old 09-13-2017, 01:52 PM
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Or he could take it into the back room, move the charging handle back and forth a couple of times, and come back out and say that it will be $40 please.
I guess I've always been lucky enough to have a gunsmith that would never do something like that. My reason for suggesting that the OP have a gunsmith look at the gun is that he is a completely new shooter and what we would catch right off he may not. If he is mechanically inclined he should be able to spot any problems but he may not be. I just wouldn't shoot any new gun without checking some basic stuff.
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Old 09-13-2017, 02:05 PM
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Are you suggesting that having replacement parts on hand for items that will down an AR when they fail is a joke?
Yes, I do.

The best advice I read for new owners that have little to no experience is to not change anything and go shoot.

Advising a new owner (with their first rifle) to start disassembling the trigger assembly and to run out and grab a second bcg , muzzle device and buffer setup is not good advice and totally unnecessary.
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Old 09-13-2017, 02:31 PM
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Yes, I do.

The best advice I read for new owners that have little to no experience is to not change anything and go shoot.

Advising a new owner (with their first rifle) to start disassembling the trigger assembly and to run out and grab a second bcg , muzzle device and buffer setup is not good advice and totally unnecessary.
Agree... brand new shooter, brand new gun, factory warranty... no reason at all to start changing stuff at this point in the game. If the rifle fails, S&W takes care of it for him, no charge.

Read the manual, inspect, clean, and lube. Buy ammo and shoot.
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Old 09-13-2017, 02:45 PM
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What's the first thing that should be done go a new firearm before shooting it? Cleaning and lubing. Indeed of the most common complaints from owners with new ARs is a gritty trigger. Cleaning and lubing the trigger goes a long way to eliminating that gritty feeling. It also properly lubes the trigger. Lubing the trigger is just basic maintenance. Installing an AR trigger group isn't difficult.

Not having a replacement BCG on hand is like driving around without a spare tire and no road side service. Extractor springs eventually fail. Bolts sometimes crack. Gas rings wear. When an AR starts to malfunction, the easiest, most universal solution is to install a replacement BCG. Some people have far to travel and pay range fees just to shoot. A spare BCG will let the shooter keep shooting.

A carbine weight buffer is too light. The correct buffer is an H or H2 buffer, depending. An AR can be shot until the proper buffer can be purchased, but it's best to start with parts made to the correct specs.

S&W muzzle devices are heavier than they need to be. It's also out at the end of the barrel where it's increased arm will require more muscle from the shooter when tracking a moving target or transitioning from target to target. An A2 birdcage is lighter, cheap, ready to install and performs just as well.

I figure Goodoboy has common sense and will realize he can shoot his AR without doing anything I suggested. As he shoots his AR, he'll understand better why I made those suggestions. Yes, shoot the AR before making changes. As always, Ammo Before Accessories. Shoot Before Modifying. Shoot enough and the things I'm talking about will become apparent
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post

Not having a replacement BCG on hand is like driving around without a spare tire and no road side service. Extractor springs eventually fail. Bolts sometimes crack. Gas rings wear. When an AR starts to malfunction, the easiest, most universal solution is to install a replacement BCG. Some people have far to travel and pay range fees just to shoot. A spare BCG will let the shooter keep shooting.
The BCG is considered the heart of the rifle, more like an engine in a car than it would be a spare tire.

A bent barrel would down the rifle, a cracked gas tube would down the rifle. Many things would "down"the rifle, carrying a second rifle is the only way to have all the parts on hand in case the rifle goes down.

With the warranty none of this needs to be messed with.
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:33 PM
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Installing an AR trigger group isn't difficult.

Perhaps a newbie should learn basic maintenance and function prior to stripping an AR down to tiny parts.

A spare BCG will let the shooter keep shooting.

What part of a bolt carrier will fail? They are little more than properly machined chunks of steel. Bolt failure, maybe. Bolt carrier failure, not likely. Just more weight to carry around.

S&W muzzle devices are heavier than they need to be. It's also out at the end of the barrel where it's increased arm will require more muscle from the shooter when tracking a moving target or transitioning from target to target. An A2 birdcage is lighter, cheap, ready to install and performs just as well.

Two things here-if a couple of ounces difference in weight is noticeable, you need to eat more Wheaties. All three of my S&W AR's came with a A2 muzzle device anyway. I find it a unlikely that a new shooter/AR owner will be tracking moving targets or transitioning from target to target. Most will have enough difficulty hitting a single stationary target from the bench at 50 yards.
Note that the OP has shot a friends AR once. He states that he is a first time shooter and owner.

As far as tuning an AR by using different buffers is concerned, it is usually accepted that the AR's sold are over-gassed as sold to be able to handle all ammunition on the market. I could care less if mine pile brass at 1:30 instead of 4:30. They work as they are and have lifetime warranties. The amount of gas is only one of several considerations when trying to figure out why an AR piles brass where it does.
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
What's the first thing that should be done go a new firearm before shooting it? Cleaning and lubing. Indeed of the most common complaints from owners with new ARs is a gritty trigger. Cleaning and lubing the trigger goes a long way to eliminating that gritty feeling. It also properly lubes the trigger. Lubing the trigger is just basic maintenance. Installing an AR trigger group isn't difficult.
The trigger needs nothing more than a drop of CLP on the pins. No need to remove, and since we are speaking about "proper" ways to do things, Uncle Sam never had me apply grease to the trigger... a single drop of oil on each pin.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
Not having a replacement BCG on hand is like driving around without a spare tire and no road side service. Extractor springs eventually fail. Bolts sometimes crack. Gas rings wear. When an AR starts to malfunction, the easiest, most universal solution is to install a replacement BCG. Some people have far to travel and pay range fees just to shoot. A spare BCG will let the shooter keep shooting.
This is more like driving around with a spare engine... Sure, having some spare parts like gas rings or firing pins can come in handy... but not really necessary when you just purchased the rifle and haven't been to the range at all! Give him a few trips to the range under his belt. If that rifle fails out of the gate, it needs to be addressed by S&W, not by swapping parts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
A carbine weight buffer is too light. The correct buffer is an H or H2 buffer, depending. An AR can be shot until the proper buffer can be purchased, but it's best to start with parts made to the correct specs.
And whose specs would those be? Are you saying that S&W doesn't know how to build their rifle to their specs? Sure, you can change little things and make the rifle run better FOR YOU... but it comes from the factory overgassed so that it is reliable with almost any off the shelf ammo, to include Tula and other cheap stuff. The military can spec a certain buffer because Uncle Sam knows exactly what ammo he will give the troops. Colt specs a different buffer because Colt never cared about selling to the civilian market and focused on gov and LE contracts. LE will typically provide the ammo to the officers as well, so they can spec the heavier buffer.

Since you made the car analogy, think of it like this. Ford builds the Mustang and puts it on the market tuned for efficiency for most drivers. Makes it run on mid grade gas. You do a little software tuning and change timing, shift points, etc... Now the car requires 92 octane... You hot rodded it and made it better for your use, however now you limited to the type of fuel you can use. Same with a buffer. If you are going to run quality, 5.56 NATO only, change it. If you are going to shoot whatever you can find cheapest, you might want to just leave it alone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
S&W muzzle devices are heavier than they need to be. It's also out at the end of the barrel where it's increased arm will require more muscle from the shooter when tracking a moving target or transitioning from target to target. An A2 birdcage is lighter, cheap, ready to install and performs just as well.
Unless something has changed, the Sport comes with a standard A2 flash hider. The one on my Sport I is no longer than the one on my CMMG rifle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
I figure Goodoboy has common sense and will realize he can shoot his AR without doing anything I suggested.
Well, he is new and asked for advice... let's let him shoot it before overwhelming him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
As he shoots his AR, he'll understand better why I made those suggestions. Yes, shoot the AR before making changes. As always, Ammo Before Accessories. Shoot Before Modifying. Shoot enough and the things I'm talking about will become apparent
Agree...
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:48 PM
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When do modifications become 'necessary'? Maybe never... maybe soon after purchase.

There's no substitute for trigger time with your rifle, but the learning curve dramatically improves with getting your hands on differently configured rifles. Strike up a conversation with guys at our club and they'll usually hand ya their firearm if expressing the least bit of interest. You may find that a longer handguard to extend your support hand is what you want. Or that Geissele trigger is the way to go. Or the guy's rifle with an adjustable gas block and muzzle brake that stayed still in your hands shot after shot was so nice to shoot... or or or. Or you may find that you like your rifle just the way it is.

You've made the first step entering the world of ARs... after that there's no telling what direction or destination you'll find yourself.

Enjoy that new rifle.
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:59 PM
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In reading this thread, I have to agree with the "less is better" opinion.

For a simple reason. If something goes wrong, you will most likely be sending the gun back to S&W CS. Every part that you changed out is subject to being put back to factory spec. And you may or may not get those parts you installed back.

If this is your first AR, just do a field strip, lube, and go shoot it. Over time I've identified parts that I've bought because they were hard to find (I have one that is very odd to begin with), or there was a need (upgraded buttstock pad, because I have arthritis).

Also, what sort of shooting do you plan? I take mine to the range. If it fails, I will get out a pistol for the rest of the day, and give it to my gunsmith to sort out. Some of the comments sound like they are coming from competitive shooters. Yes, they know and will have plans for all the extras that they need to get through a day or a weekend. But it doesn't sound like you are there yet.

Just grab some decent ammo and go shoot it.
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Old 09-13-2017, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
What's the first thing that should be done go a new firearm before shooting it? Cleaning and lubing. Indeed of the most common complaints from owners with new ARs is a gritty trigger. Cleaning and lubing the trigger goes a long way to eliminating that gritty feeling. It also properly lubes the trigger. Lubing the trigger is just basic maintenance. Installing an AR trigger group isn't difficult.

Not having a replacement BCG on hand is like driving around without a spare tire and no road side service. Extractor springs eventually fail. Bolts sometimes crack. Gas rings wear. When an AR starts to malfunction, the easiest, most universal solution is to install a replacement BCG. Some people have far to travel and pay range fees just to shoot. A spare BCG will let the shooter keep shooting.

A carbine weight buffer is too light. The correct buffer is an H or H2 buffer, depending. An AR can be shot until the proper buffer can be purchased, but it's best to start with parts made to the correct specs.

S&W muzzle devices are heavier than they need to be. It's also out at the end of the barrel where it's increased arm will require more muscle from the shooter when tracking a moving target or transitioning from target to target. An A2 birdcage is lighter, cheap, ready to install and performs just as well.

I figure Goodoboy has common sense and will realize he can shoot his AR without doing anything I suggested. As he shoots his AR, he'll understand better why I made those suggestions. Yes, shoot the AR before making changes. As always, Ammo Before Accessories. Shoot Before Modifying. Shoot enough and the things I'm talking about will become apparent
While most of that is right there is such a thing as information overload.

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Old 09-13-2017, 04:13 PM
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Originally Posted by ChattanoogaPhil View Post
There's no substitute for trigger time with your rifle, but the learning curve dramatically improves with getting your hands on differently configured rifles. Strike up a conversation with guys at our club and they'll usually hand ya their firearm if expressing the least bit of interest. You may find that a longer handguard to extend your support hand is what you want. Or that Geissele trigger is the way to go. Or the guy's rifle with an adjustable gas block and muzzle brake that stayed still in your hands shot after shot was so nice to shoot... or or or.
Or just shoot your rifle only, and remain blissfully ignorant of all the ways the AR can drain your wallet!
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Old 09-13-2017, 05:41 PM
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Strip it, clean it, lube it, then shoot it.

Repeat.

No need for anything else.

I have two cheapo ARs. Both are bone stock. One has around 10,000 rounds through it. Nothing has ever broken or been replaced on it. NOTHING. That one probably needs a new barrel, gas tube, and BCG because most barrels wear out at somewhere around that round count, but so far so good.

The newer of the two is a Sport II. It also is bone stock. It shoots reliably with all ammo.

Just shoot it. If you want to tinker with it later, then go ahead, but realize that for most of us doing so is a WANT rather than a NEED.
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Old 09-13-2017, 05:49 PM
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Or just shoot your rifle only, and remain blissfully ignorant of all the ways the AR can drain your wallet!
Probably works well for most AR owners.
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Old 09-13-2017, 06:08 PM
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Keep a couple of spare extractor springs on hand.
...
Keep a complete spare bolt carrier group on hand.
...
S&W muzzle devices are longer and heavier than they need to be.
...
Carbine weight buffers are too light.
As I said earlier, people will be surprising generous when they are spending YOUR money.

I suggest you follow the owner's manual written by the people you trusted enough to build the rifle in the first place. Do what they suggest starting out. In time you'll learn what of their advice you want to accept and what you want to modify or reject.
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Old 09-13-2017, 06:13 PM
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JaPes wrote:
...couple extra mags.
Yeah. You can never be too rich, too thin or have too many AR mags.

A lot of people like Generation 2 P-Mags. I have some and have no complaints about them, but I'm old school enough to prefer metal, so I like blackened stainless steel ones made by C-Products.
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Old 09-13-2017, 10:10 PM
goodoboy goodoboy is offline
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Originally Posted by cyphertext View Post
Agree... brand new shooter, brand new gun, factory warranty... no reason at all to start changing stuff at this point in the game. If the rifle fails, S&W takes care of it for him, no charge.

Read the manual, inspect, clean, and lube. Buy ammo and shoot.
Thanks cyphertext, I agree. This is the process I am doing now. I will post a new thread on my first shooting experience. Job keeping me busy lately.
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Old 09-14-2017, 09:04 AM
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Ignore them.
.....
Spend a few months with the rifle and put a few hundred rounds downrange. By that time YOU will know what you like and don't like about it and what you want to spend your money to change.

I asked my sons to do that. One added a bolt-on carrying handle with A2 rear sight while my other son has not made any changes to his.


So much this. Don't let others tell you how to run your gun. You may end up buying things you don't like, you may end up with 4 or 5 different sights but that's ok. Ask your buddies if they have extra stuff you can swap out to try. A lot of stuff you won't know if you like till you run it.

I love my sight on my AR, but my wife and other friend can't even use it at all. So don't let others dictate what they "think" may work for you.


Let your hands be the judge.


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