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Basic
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Posted: 9/21/2009 2:49:38 PM EST
I read somewhere saying that the buffer retainer pin was only a convenience feature for when you remove the Upper from the Lower. When removing the upper the buffer and spring actually get stopped by the trigger so the retainer pin is actually not needed at all. It was also stated that the pin/spring can be a point of failure. I have built two AR15s now and have fired hundreds of rounds through them w/o the pin. I guess I am wondering if anyone else has done this and if there is any danger in doing this? I would also like someone to point me to a article or something that talks about this. Thanks in advance.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 2:53:06 PM EST
I dont think it would hurt anything in a sense its less parts to worry about that part failing wich could jam things up.Its probably more of a feature to not loose the buffer and spring or retaining it in a controlled posistion until it needs to be removed.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 2:54:39 PM EST
Im not an operator fighting insurgents.. So i'd rather have a buffer retainer pin that "might" be a point of failure (but still have to see it over thousands of rounds) but have a simplier way to go when I take the upper apart for cleaning..

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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:00:11 PM EST
I still use buffer retainers as ive never experienced a failure of one and my Bushmaster#1 that I bought in 92 has been modded and rebuilt a few times over 17 years and im still using the same buffer retainer as I dont replace any part until it breaks or malfunctins.Its completely shiny buts got many thousands of bolt carrier cycles on it to never be able to be counted at the very least over 3k rounds a year when ammo was cheap nad thats on 1 rifle..ive got 3 others.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:02:09 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 3:04:01 PM EST by TripleTapper]
Shung,

I see what you are saying about not being an operator LOL, but people would argue about just having an AR if you are not fighting insurgents. The whole reason we all look for the best and strive for the best is just in case the SHTF we want to be prepared.....that's one of the reasons why I got the black gun disease in the first place.

When I take the upper off of the lower, the buffer comes forward and is stopped by the trigger assembly. It really is a nice deal. I never have to worry about a spring shooting the pin and getting lost. A friend of mine is questioning me on this, so I was hoping some of the more experienced members on this site could shed some light on this. Also I want to just be absolutely sure that removing the pin doesn't pose a danger.

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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:02:38 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
I read somewhere saying that the buffer retainer pin was only a convenience feature for when you remove the Upper from the Lower. When removing the upper the buffer and spring actually get stopped by the trigger so the retainer pin is actually not needed at all. It was also stated that the pin/spring can be a point of failure. I have built two AR15s now and have fired hundreds of rounds through them w/o the pin. I guess I am wondering if anyone else has done this and if there is any danger in doing this? I would also like someone to point me to a article or something that talks about this. Thanks in advance.


so when you separate the upper from the lower the buffer slams into the hammer? I prefer the pin, thanks.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:06:10 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 3:07:54 PM EST by TripleTapper]
No slamming at all, I just pull the rear take down pin and pivot the upper towards the front while catching the buffer with my thumb and placing it against the trigger.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:07:50 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
No slamming at all, I just remove the rear take down pin and pivot the upper towards the front while catching the buffer with my thumb and placing it against the trigger.


But if you forgot to catch it it would slam into the hammer, correct?
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:09:47 PM EST
I don't have any ARs that do not have a buffer detent, but apparently people using the Cav Arms polymer lowers frequently forego a buffer detent and don't seem to miss it.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:11:05 PM EST
Originally Posted By Captains1911:
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
No slamming at all, I just remove the rear take down pin and pivot the upper towards the front while catching the buffer with my thumb and placing it against the trigger.


But if you forgot to catch it it would slam into the hammer, correct?


I guess I don't see your point, if while I am removing the upper and accidentally drop it....does that mean I shouldn't remove the upper? Catching the buffer is something that I think about when taking apart my gun because I know there is no pin there....its not something I would forget.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:12:45 PM EST
I'll keep the detent thanks.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:18:44 PM EST
Originally Posted By timb3:
I'll keep the detent thanks.


I appreciate you and others stating your preferences, but I am looking for if this is safe and if anyone else does this. Also I have searched Google and can not find the article that originally gave me this information. Any help on information regarding this would be greatly appreciated. Also if there are any "Operators" out there, do you use the retainer pin? After not using the pin, the only reason I would ever switch back is if there was any danger.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:21:07 PM EST
People get too hyped up about "points of failure". Has anyone experienced this?
Been around ARs for close to 30 years and haven't seen this.


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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 3:31:17 PM EST
Originally Posted By timb3:

I'll keep the detent thanks.


This.

I suspect it's there ... by design.


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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:03:44 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 4:09:21 PM EST by TripleTapper]
Originally Posted By Winn:
Originally Posted By timb3:

I'll keep the detent thanks.


This.

I suspect it's there ... by design.



Yeah....and a design can never be improved upon.

By the way, I found a pic of this. I have also read that people have had the pin break off and jam their bolt. But since a bunch of guys have never seen it happen in 175 years of owning a gun....I guess that could never happen and this is all made up.

If your gun works then leave it alone? I guess i should not have added the PMAG, SOPMOD, Quad Rail, Ergo Grip.....my gun was working great before, and works even better now.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:16:34 PM EST
All my AR's have them,If it's properly assembled you shouldn't have any problems.
My Colt SP1 still has it's original.Been shooting it since 84.
Did you expect people to start taking them out because you did?
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:18:44 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 4:27:56 PM EST by TripleTapper]
Originally Posted By demusn1979:
All my AR's have them,If it's properly assembled you shouldn't have any problems.
My Colt SP1 still has it's original.Been shooting it since 84.
Did you expect people to start taking them out because you did?


Maybe you should re-read my original post. I am looking to see if anyone else does this and if it is safe and not harmful to my gun. For some reason many of you think that its unnecessary and you need to spam my thread about it. For those of you that think that, please exit out of this thread and start your own. I am looking for specific information on if its a safe practice. Thank you to those who have at least read my posts and responded back on topic.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:18:45 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
I read somewhere saying that the buffer retainer pin was only a convenience feature for when you remove the Upper from the Lower. When removing the upper the buffer and spring actually get stopped by the trigger so the retainer pin is actually not needed at all. It was also stated that the pin/spring can be a point of failure. I have built two AR15s now and have fired hundreds of rounds through them w/o the pin. I guess I am wondering if anyone else has done this and if there is any danger in doing this? I would also like someone to point me to a article or something that talks about this. Thanks in advance.


Most of the failures that have been seen with the buffer retaining pin is it getting stuck down in the recess, therefor acting like there was no pin at all.
Did the weapon still function? Yes..
If you actually half the lowers and upper the buffer gets caught by the hammer not the trigger.
Is there any danger to firing the weapon, no.

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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:24:36 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 4:25:49 PM EST by TripleTapper]
WOW W157.....THANK YOU!!! This is the information that I am looking for. Thank you for your correction as well....the buffer does get caught by the hammer.....not the trigger. Funny how people get SO defensive when someone comes out with a idea like this. I don't care what Joe Schmo does with their gun, I was just curious if anyone has heard of this and if its safe.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:29:00 PM EST
Wow, never thought it would function without the detent pin. I would never go without it as it's there for a reason, but it's good to know that the rifle will function without it.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:36:23 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
Originally Posted By demusn1979:
All my AR's have them,If it's properly assembled you shouldn't have any problems.
My Colt SP1 still has it's original.Been shooting it since 84.
Did you expect people to start taking them out because you did?


Maybe you should re-read my original post. I am looking to see if anyone else does this and if it is safe and not harmful to my gun. For some reason many of you think that its unnecessary. For those of you that think so, please exit out of this thread. I am looking for specific information on if its a safe practice. Thank you to those who have at least read my posts and responded back on topic.


lol. I've said this before and I'll say it again, Post count and the year joined doesn't mean dick TO ME.

BUT, with a question like this, and the responses you are getting, what more do you want?
If you have "googled" it and found nothing, if you have asked it here and havent "got the response you were looking for", what do you want?
Guys that have been around longer ON HERE than you, (not saying they have more experience than you because I don't believe post counts makes the man), are saying that either way it shouldn't matter, what more do you want?
There might be one instance or two or half a dozen where a buffer detent broke and made a rifle not function, but there are also instances where triggers broke, gas keys broke, hell there are pictures on the net somewhere of one thing or another breaking at one time or another, is that going to make me take it out? or replace everything with super-duper high quality milspec out the ass aircraft grade space shuttle worthy parts? nah, all my stuff works great the way it is, until it breaks, i won't worry about it.

Maybe thats ignorant to you shtf people, but every weapon platform has weaknesses. you have to be mentally prepared to fix them when the time comes and have confidence in your rifle. Shooting a weapon with no confidence, worrying it will break with every squeeze of the trigger, is ineffective and will cause you to shoot less acccurate because your focus will be on the weapon, not the threat/target.

Sorry if this isn't the answer you were looking for but this is my opinion, if you can't take opinions without getting you're feelings hurt, maybe you should just read and not post.

:i am not LEO/"operator"/contractor/military/triple-blackwater-delta-tau-delta. I am just a regular civie trying to learn as much as I can without getting sidetracked on buffer detent springs
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:38:58 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 4:47:34 PM EST by TerryC]
Before posting this, I went to check a couple of things to make sure I was correct.

1) The only time the buffer is held back by the tip of the detent is when the upper is either tilted forward on the pivot pin, or removed from the lower. When you set the rear of the upper back into position to insert the takedown pin, you can see and feel the buffer being pushed back off the detent. This is even more obvious if you have both pins out, and place the upper flat against the lower and push it back against the spring until the pins will go in. It has to push the buffer back about 1/16". Not much, but enough.

The buffer is not beating against the detent during fire. Unless something is noticeably worn or out-of-spec, it isn't making contact at all.

2) There is a groove in the bottom of the carrier, that rides over the detent. The detent never touches the BCG during cycling.

The detent basically performs no function and does not interact with any moving parts during fire.


For these reasons I don't buy the "point of failure" argument. Sure, anything can fail, but it's highly unlikely a failure of the detent would be caused by cycling of the BCG or buffer during firing. In my opinion a failure would be most likely to occur when the gun is broke open for cleaning. That is the only time there is pressure on the tip of the detent.

Of course, this is all based on my own observations and YMMV...

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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:43:37 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 4:45:54 PM EST by TripleTapper]
WormyDog

If you would read my post, I thanked the people that responded back on topic. Your rant really has nothing to do with anything, but I hope you feel better now that you got it off your chest. My feelings are in no way hurt. Finally, the reason I keep coming back to AR15 is because there are a LOT of great people on here that have helped me out a ton! There is advice I have gotten on here that I have not found anywhere else. This question has been answered and I hope others will still post on this thread if they have anything useful to contribute to it. Also notice how another member of AR15 didn't know his gun could even function w/o the detent. I guess it was a good thing I posted after all.

TerryC - Thank you...thats very useful information. I am glad you and a few others can shed light on this very forbidden subject.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:46:59 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
WormyDog

If you would read my post, I thanked the people that responded back on topic. Your rant really has nothing to do with anything, but I hope you feel better now that you got it off your chest. My feelings are in no way hurt. Finally, the reason I keep coming back to AR15 is because there are a LOT of great people on here that have helped me out a ton! There is advice I have gotten on here that I have not found anywhere else. This question has been answered and I hope others will still post on this thread if they have anything useful to contribute to it. Also notice how another member of AR15 didn't know his gun could even function w/o the detent. I guess it was a good thing I posted after all.


Ya I kinda felt bad for a second after reading what you posted before me. O well. Wasn't really taking it out on you alone but kinda the people who think with 23523 posts they are selfproclaimed arfcom gods.
im not even to 1000, i know nothing right? probably true.

Sorry this isn't technical convo but my apology to TT. No harm no foul.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:52:02 PM EST
So what is your exact reasoning for removing a part that was designed to be there?
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:52:32 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
Originally Posted By demusn1979:
All my AR's have them,If it's properly assembled you shouldn't have any problems.
My Colt SP1 still has it's original.Been shooting it since 84.
Did you expect people to start taking them out because you did?


Maybe you should re-read my original post. I am looking to see if anyone else does this and if it is safe and not harmful to my gun. For some reason many of you think that its unnecessary. For those of you that think so, please exit out of this thread. I am looking for specific information on if its a safe practice. Thank you to those who have at least read my posts and responded back on topic.


It is safe IMHO to omit the buffer retainer and spring. No moving parts should touch a buffer retainer in a properly assembled AR when the upper and lower are closed together. There are other quirky people who have added extra steps to opening and closing the receivers (Catching the buffer, resting it on the hammer, ensuring the buffer doesn'tget jarred off the hammer and go flying, and pushing the buffer rearward to close the receivers together). Do you remove the buffer and spring when you inspect or lubricate the wear surfaces on the FCG?

All cases I have seen of damaged buffer retainers have been due to out of spec. buffer retainer holes and/or improper installation of the receiver extension.

If the only people who post in this self validation thread are people who agree with you 100%, how are you supposed to find out that your practice is silly (though not wrong)?

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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 4:56:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 5:02:31 PM EST by TripleTapper]
Karl,

I am not saying if you don't agree with me, don't post. W157 & TerryC are great examples of people that don't agree with me, yet answered my question.

WormyDog,

No apology needed. Like you said, there was no harm and no foul
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 5:14:32 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 5:16:22 PM EST by Winn]
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:

Originally Posted By Winn:
Originally Posted By timb3:

I'll keep the detent thanks.


This.

I suspect it's there ... by design.



Yeah....and a design can never be improved upon.

By the way, I found a pic of this. I have also read that people have had the pin break off and jam their bolt. But since a bunch of guys have never seen it happen in 175 years of owning a gun....I guess that could never happen and this is all made up.

If your gun works then leave it alone? I guess i should not have added the PMAG, SOPMOD, Quad Rail, Ergo Grip.....my gun was working great before, and works even better now.



Your references are all to design *improvements* ... NOT ... design omissions.



Get a clue.



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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 5:28:37 PM EST
Winn,

I had a long drawn out response, but its not even worth it.



Thanks to all who answered my question. I may be putting the detent back. If it never even makes contact in normal operation, I sure can't see how it can fail.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 5:41:15 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:

I had a long drawn out response, but its not even worth it ...



You're right ...





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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 5:46:11 PM EST
Is this a serious post?

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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 5:50:46 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:

I may be putting the detent back. If it never even makes contact in normal operation, I sure can't see how it can fail.



Good idea. Eugene Stoner thought out the design pretty good and Colt spent the better half of a century fine tuning it. If there was such an issue with that part don't you think it would have been addressed?
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 6:19:03 PM EST
Has any manufactor ever deleated it? Thinking about it I don't think it would cause malfunction not being there, but what a strange thing it would be. Sort of like a jack in the box. You open up countless AR's and one all of a sudden the buffer flies out. That would catch me off guard.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 6:29:32 PM EST
Originally Posted By CTbuilder1:
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:

I may be putting the detent back. If it never even makes contact in normal operation, I sure can't see how it can fail.



Good idea. Eugene Stoner thought out the design pretty good and Colt spent the better half of a century fine tuning it. If there was such an issue with that part don't you think it would have been addressed?


$1.50 well spent. It was designed as a system so all users would know its operation.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 6:46:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/21/2009 6:52:08 PM EST by Gamma762]
The fail is strong with this one The "point of failure" is in the incorrect analysis of the function of the buffer retainer and its' potential for causing problems.

The only "point of failure" in the buffer retainer is if the buffer tube is not installed correctly, so that the buffer retainer is not retained in the lower receiver. Otherwise it's inert to the operation of the firearm. Get someone competent to build your lower and it's a complete non-issue.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 6:53:04 PM EST
Originally Posted By TripleTapper:
Originally Posted By timb3:
I'll keep the detent thanks.


I appreciate you and others stating your preferences, but I am looking for if this is safe and if anyone else does this. Also I have searched Google and can not find the article that originally gave me this information. Any help on information regarding this would be greatly appreciated. Also if there are any "Operators" out there, do you use the retainer pin? After not using the pin, the only reason I would ever switch back is if there was any danger.


I've never seen a lower without the buffer detent, nor have I ever seen or heard of a detent breaking.
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 7:16:54 PM EST
I use the buffer retainer pin. Nothing unsafe about not using one.

I had a small problem this past weekend in a 3 day class. End of day 2 I broke open my "top tier" carbine and my buffer retainer pin ejected. I found it on the carpet and re-installed it. That's right, popped it right back in but of course it wouldn't stay.

"Top tier" buffer retaining pin hole is out of spec and it elongated a few thousandths forward enough to allow the pin to eject. There is VERY little material on the front side of the retainer pin hole on this particular weapon now.

I could have run it the rest of the class sans the retainer pin but I opted to back off the castle nut, which is a real bitch on a properly staked castle nut in a hotel, turn the receiver extension in 1 turn and then file the top of the receiver extension so the upper would clear. I ran it all day on day 3 with no problems.

I called the top tier manufacturer and they said "normally taking a rifle apart would void the warranty but take some pictures and send them to us" as if I didn't know what the hell I'm talking about. I don't think the hole will open up any further forward as the carrier is obviously now loading up the buffer more than normal so it shouldn't beat it at all. If it does I'll bore the hole and install a steel sleeve which will fix it for good.

So, can the retainer pin or even the hole fail on an out of spec lower? yes. If you do have a failure you can run the rifle without it no problem. After 20 yrs wrenching on the AR15 I can't see any reason to proactively remove it to eliminate a point of failure. There isn't any risks involved with that particular part being in the weapon.
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LWT
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 7:21:29 PM EST
It's a "non stressed" part on a Rifle that is properly built and in spec. There is absolutely nowhere for it to go and nothing there to "fail".

Now I have seen some junk guns that were so out of spec that when assembled the bolt carrier did not fully contact the buffer releiving it of being captured by the buffer retainer which in turn allowed the buffer face to "slam" into the buffer retaining pin during counter recoil every time the weapon was fired. Even then, the buffer face got chewed up but the buffer retainer did not fail or even deform.

To not have a buffer retaining pin installed in a known good Rifle makes absolutely no fucking sense. I would honestly pay to see someone have their stick go down in a stressfull situation. Click...immediate action...tap rack bang...nothing.....remedial action....pull the pin to break the weapon open and the fucking buffer goes SPROOOIIIIING!!!!!!! and your fumble fucking around trying to get that shit put back together with your ham hands
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Link Posted: 9/21/2009 7:35:28 PM EST
Originally Posted By MMcfpd:
I don't have any ARs that do not have a buffer detent, but apparently people using the Cav Arms polymer lowers frequently forego a buffer detent and don't seem to miss it.


Yep, I took it out of one of my CAV-15s and didn't install it in the other... they work fine and its no big deal to catch the buffer when I open them up.
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Link Posted: 9/22/2009 5:14:02 AM EST
I use my AR for work and dont feel the need or have any desire to delete my buffer retaining pin. I have done tons of crazy things to improve my AR and spent thousnads of dollars. It is not a mod Id reccoemnd to anyone. It wont gain you anything.
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Link Posted: 9/22/2009 6:01:22 AM EST
Originally Posted By LWT:
To not have a buffer retaining pin installed in a known good Rifle makes absolutely no fucking sense. I would honestly pay to see someone have their stick go down in a stressfull situation. Click...immediate action...tap rack bang...nothing.....remedial action....pull the pin to break the weapon open and the fucking buffer goes SPROOOIIIIING!!!!!!! and your fumble fucking around trying to get that shit put back together with your ham hands


This sums it up perfectly. The retainer pin is there to keep your shit together when you are trying to get your rifle back online in a hurry. If you're pulling your upper apart to fix an issue, the LAST thing you need is to have to go chasing your buff/spring when you forget you have nothing holding it in.

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Link Posted: 9/22/2009 9:25:59 AM EST
Originally Posted By LWT:


To not have a buffer retaining pin installed in a known good Rifle makes absolutely no fucking sense. I would honestly pay to see someone have their stick go down in a stressfull situation. Click...immediate action...tap rack bang...nothing.....remedial action....pull the pin to break the weapon open and the fucking buffer goes SPROOOIIIIING!!!!!!! and your fumble fucking around trying to get that shit put back together with your ham hands


That's amazing! "Ham Hands"....... I love it. That's funny stuff.
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Link Posted: 9/22/2009 10:42:54 AM EST
Not needed, but I have them installed.

Only ever saw 2 ar's go down from the pin. Both were on collapsible stocks that got loose (guessing homebuilts).
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Link Posted: 9/23/2009 12:58:55 PM EST
Apparently there is enough insecurities out there to exploit by making money in the buffer-tube retaining pin business!


Coming soon: The Advanced Combat Retaining Pin By Operator Dynamics. Only $130. $175 for the upgraded version with integral picatinny rail.




Sometimes this website is informative. Sometimes it is just plain awesome

This thread is an instance of the latter.

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Link Posted: 9/23/2009 1:28:01 PM EST
Too much of a bitch to open and close it––-don't ya think??
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