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Posted: 6/9/2009 10:48:18 AM EST
So, since we're all pretty much aware that chrome lined barrels are the way to go, what do you guys think about use of the early variants in a SHTF or even TEOTWAWKI scenarios? The SEALs and early advisors did pretty well with them, despite the humidity in VN, although they had chrome BCGs. Very little humidity here in AZ, but I'd prefer a chrome-lined barrel. It just got me thinking - would you guys trust your lives to an early variant in such a situation?
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 11:00:03 AM EST
Well given a choice it is "only chrome lined" all the way. WIth that said I am a make do kind of guy, so I would make it work if that is what I had.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 11:01:15 AM EST
assuming modern ammo with the proper powder, sure. I even have a cleaning kit, unlike some of the earliest users.

heck, my AR and AK are the only firearms I have with chrome-lined barrels. it didn't seem to be a problem in WWII to not have a chrome-lined barrel, and I don't have anything full-auto or anything.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 12:08:48 PM EST
All you need is the lower!

Buy a 'new' chrome lined' or super steel barrel of your choice. SBR it (you don't even need a form 1 as it's an SMG anyway).

Keep the stock barrel as backup and use the lower with a 10.5 LWRC upper or something of the same quality.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 12:14:00 PM EST
Originally Posted By ftldrben:
All you need is the lower!

Buy a 'new' chrome lined' or super steel barrel of your choice. SBR it (you don't even need a form 1 as it's an SMG anyway).

Keep the stock barrel as backup and use the lower with a 10.5 LWRC upper or something of the same quality.


I have other AR builds going on that are chrome-lined. I was just wondering how people felt about the reliability of the early uppers/barrels in a SHTF situation.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 12:58:03 PM EST
If the SHTF I doubt I'd be able to get enough rounds to shoot out a non-chrome-lined barrel. I'd still pick up my carbine with the CL barrel first, but I don't think I'd have a probably going with my early 604 clone without chrome lining.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 1:33:35 PM EST
I was taught by Uncle Sam to keep my weapons clean so, I wouldn't have a problem using a un-lined barrel in a SHTF situation.

It could always be worse.



Doc
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 3:40:33 PM EST
Originally Posted By Beretta92F:
assuming modern ammo with the proper powder, sure. I even have a cleaning kit, unlike some of the earliest users.

heck, my AR and AK are the only firearms I have with chrome-lined barrels. it didn't seem to be a problem in WWII to not have a chrome-lined barrel, and I don't have anything full-auto or anything.


Great point with WWII weapons. I don't think I have ever heard of any M1918A2 BAR's having issues with their barrels in the Pacific theatre.........and they were using corrosive primed ammunition.

Link Posted: 6/9/2009 3:55:30 PM EST
IMO, until the advent of the M4 MWS the M16A1 was probably one of the finest rifles ever fielded by the US military.
Lightweight, accurate, controllable, and effective.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 4:27:19 PM EST
I had to buy a non-CL barrel last year. It was all they had and didn't want to gamble on finding one later. I haven't used it yet, but am wondering if polishing the chamber might be a good idea ?


That said; If an old chrome moly barrel was all I had. I'd be OK with it. I'd just be Johnny on the spot with the cleaning kit.
My carbines and Garand are still working fine.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 4:42:19 PM EST
I polish the chamber on all of my AR platform rifles. Not to go against the grain but if we ever had a SHTF situation I would grab one of my AK's.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 4:44:36 PM EST
Originally Posted By thedoctors308:
IMO, until the advent of the M4 MWS the M16A1 was probably one of the finest rifles ever fielded by the US military.
Lightweight, accurate, controllable, and effective.


The M16A1 had a chrome lined chamber, then chrome lined barrel. Thus my question about early variants.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 4:50:22 PM EST
My goto gun is not chrome lined.
I don't worry about it not having chrome.
If necessary I'd grab any of my retro rifles, even my 601 with edgewater buffer, large head firing pin and non-chrome lined barrel if I had to and wouldn't worry a bit.
The reason I would choose a different rifle would have more to do with size and optics.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 4:52:37 PM EST
Just my own personal view, but Remington and Winchester (to name just two) have been making lots of fine rifles for 100+ years without the need for chrome lined barrels or chambers...bolt action, lever action, and gas operated...

If you really feel the need, there are several barrel makers who make stainless steel barrels for the AR-15...
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 4:56:38 PM EST
Chrome lined is only helpful for a higher round count. Unless you're planning to shoot 12K+ rounds a non chrome lined barrel (which are more accurate to boot) suits perfectly fine.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 5:49:00 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/9/2009 5:50:41 PM EST by EagleArmsHBAR]
Yes, as long as the chamber was not one of Colt's fuck up from when they ramped up production in 1966-67 and had poor quality control.

Remember that it was Colt's poor quality control that gave the M16 a bad rep in VN.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 6:39:30 PM EST
But but but, the Kool-Aid? It's cherry!
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 7:01:38 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/9/2009 7:07:04 PM EST by MarkRSims]
My go to gun? One of the Garands until the .458 gets here. The rounds are a bit heavier, but then again... The rounds are a bit heavier. And I don't care about chrome. Not even on my bumper.

(Yeah, I just got finished watching Gran Torino again, about 1/2 hour ago)

ETA: but I also like 3.1415926535897932384626433832795…
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 7:17:06 PM EST
Were good enough in 68 and 69 so they should be good enough for 09.
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 8:10:01 PM EST
Originally Posted By EagleArmsHBAR:
Yes, as long as the chamber was not one of Colt's fuck up from when they ramped up production in 1966-67 and had poor quality control.

Remember that it was Colt's poor quality control that gave the M16 a bad rep in VN.



My XM16E1 upper is indeed 1966 vintage from what I can tell, thus my question. The quality seems fine - but the early Xm16E1s were the ones that had issues, I guess without checking the chamber (which I can't) it will be hard to tell if it meets spec, and I won't go into the whole ball powder debate as it's flogging a dead horse. Let's not go there and rediscuss all that - however, the AR does have one main difference from all the other rifles mentioned and that is that it's direct gas impingement.

I am not running an Edgewater buffer either, but I thought it was an interesting topic for debate, since if you ask about barrels, everyone says chrome-lined is the one to buy. I agree with that actually, and we all know that chroming the chamber makes a difference in humid climates. I'm not EVEN going to go into the shoulder angle of various calibers or the difference between tapered cases and basically straight wall cases and the potential effects on case obturation between them - I think we've all read those articles and have seen the threads. What I find interesting is that the overwhelming response seems to be 'I'm fine with it'. I am curious what the response would have been had I posted the same poll in AR Discussions for example. Sorry guys, this just occurred to me as I was looking at some pics of early SEALs in Vietnam, and it made me think about this.

Link Posted: 6/9/2009 8:20:00 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/9/2009 8:25:30 PM EST by Morg308]
Originally Posted By F4ENUT:
Were good enough in 68 and 69 so they should be good enough for 09.


I was under the impression by that time that most M16s had been upgraded to at least a chrome chamber. From what I've read there was a clear effort to do that, although I'm sure some non-chrome weapons were still in the field. Am I wrong about that? Were there far more of the early weapons still around? I mean, I know some were kicking around until the end of the war, but I was under the impression that their numbers were fairly small. I am referring to 601s, 602s, early 604s and of course early 603s (XM16E1s)

I just wanted to know - if you were handed an early 603 clone with no chrome like mine, would you bet your life on it?

ETA: MarkRSims - I just got done watching Gran Torino tonight - awesome movie. Made me want a Garand all over again, but the Garand doesn't shovel carbon into it's chamber either. Oh, and Doc Mike - is that a tactical slingshot?
Link Posted: 6/9/2009 9:15:37 PM EST
Hey Morg,

I think you just have to look at your avitar and that should answer your question. Those guys have used their vintage M16 for daily SHTF for the last 30 or so years. I'm sure that any cleaning supplies that were issued to them are now LONG gone. So, I would say....yea it should be ok.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 4:13:03 AM EST
Originally Posted By Morg308:
Were there far more of the early weapons still around? I mean, I know some were kicking around until the end of the war, but I was under the impression that their numbers were fairly small. I am referring to 601s, 602s, early 604s and of course early 603s (XM16E1s)


The DOD guard unit at my local Air Reserve Base uses the same M16 rifles that were part of our (I was in the flying squadron) initial issue back in the '60's, when we changed over from M1 carbines...that's M16, not A1 or A2...No chrome barrels, no chrome chambers, no forward assist...they shoot theirs pretty much every month...there has been upgrading, but no across-the-board upgrades...just individual parts replaced...they're still in use today...LONG after the end of the war...

Supply won't survey anything that is still functional...So until they wear out or are superseded, they'll still be there...
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 6:16:06 AM EST
Originally Posted By MrMONEYman:
Hey Morg,

I think you just have to look at your avitar and that should answer your question. Those guys have used their vintage M16 for daily SHTF for the last 30 or so years. I'm sure that any cleaning supplies that were issued to them are now LONG gone. So, I would say....yea it should be ok.


Actually, my avatar should give you a clue as to how I feel about this issue - but I guess I felt like stirring the pot a little (or throwing a rock into it ) I thought I'd play Devil's Advocate for awhile - I guess the point I was trying to make is taking the idea of KISS a little further, because of the idea that you must have chrome-lined, latest and greatest to have an effective weapon. Personally I think the chrome chamber was a good improvement, as was the heavier extractor and o-ring, but other than that the only improvement I could see that I'd like would be the ability to use military M855. (Twist rate.)

As I said, I was looking at early pics the other day, and it occurred to me that my Xm16E1 build would do me just fine in SHTF. Thanks for all the responses guys - sorry if I got anyone's blood pressure up.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 9:28:35 AM EST
The problem in VietNam wasn't that the barrel wasn't chrome plated. The problem was that the CHAMBER wasn't chrome plated.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 9:31:00 AM EST
Originally Posted By F4ENUT:
Were good enough in 68 and 69 so they should be good enough for 09.


Go to the magazine forum.. If you don't have the newest fad magazine they will tell you you have one foot in the grave even if you are only going to the range to plink.

Link Posted: 6/10/2009 11:13:47 AM EST
I have a 604 upper and while I haven't put it thru it's paces yet, I would have no problem using it for Defensive purposes provided I had sighted it in and it functioned properly
As KurtVf pointed out, the CHROME CHAMBER is probably more important which my 604 has
In some early models ( EKIE posted pics) the CHROME in the Chamber runs all the way past the locking lugs


My 604


Oh BTW I voted for Pie !
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 1:42:39 PM EST
Originally Posted By KurtVF:
The problem in VietNam wasn't that the barrel wasn't chrome plated. The problem was that the CHAMBER wasn't chrome plated.


Well, I know that. I guess I still consider the chamber part of the barrel, and that is what I was referring to, in referring to EARLY weapons like mine that had neither. I guess I should have said chrome plated chambers specifically but I didn't think I needed to be that specific, when I was talking about 601s, 602s and early 603s and 604s. If a weapon has a chrome lined barrel, then the chamber is obviously plated also, as opposed to a C MP C barrel, which is just the chamber. In referring to early models that did not have C MP C marked barrels, I thought I was being pretty clear.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 1:44:44 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/10/2009 1:46:32 PM EST by Morg308]
Originally Posted By Morg308:
Originally Posted By thedoctors308:
IMO, until the advent of the M4 MWS the M16A1 was probably one of the finest rifles ever fielded by the US military.
Lightweight, accurate, controllable, and effective.


The M16A1 had a chrome lined chamber, then chrome lined barrel. Thus my question about early variants.


Again, I thought I was being clear. Guess I should have rephrased it in the first post.
You guys are absolutely correct - a chrome chamber is a more important distinction, and what I had in mind when I started this thread.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 1:59:50 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/10/2009 2:04:04 PM EST by EagleArmsHBAR]
Since you asked:

OK, so I talked to my dad again about the rifle in Vietnam.

Here is what he told me today:

He arrives in Vietnam in June 1967 and immediately goes north to the DMZ area. He is with Kilo Co 3/9 Marines. He is issued a NIB XM16E1. He says it has the forward assist, 3 prong flash hider, and parkerized BCG. I have a pic of it and it also has a partial fence lower.

He is in a rifle platoon and sees his share of combat but has no trouble with his XM16E1.

About 1/2 way through his tour (I am guessing Dec 67 or Jan 68), Kilo Company is told to report to an area where there is a truck with two armorer in it that are inspecting rifles. They wait in line to get the rifles looked at and everyone in line was excited to possibly get issued a brand new rifle. They observe a pile of old rifle in the truck and another pile of boxes that contain new M16A1s with birdcage flash hiders.

When it is his turn, they inspect the barrel of his rifle and say that it is OK and hand it back to him. He really wanted a new rifle because he thought that would be cool, so he bent the cleaning rod and started scraztching the chamber and bore all to hell so that they will give him a new one.

He goes through the line three times and each time they say his rifle is still OK. At that point he thinks to himself, "Oh shit I hope I did not fuck up the barrel with my cleaning rod."

Several in his company got the new rifles with the birdcage, but not him. He goes on to say that he did "go through" 5 or 6 rifles during his tour but it was not the function that was an issue. I guess he broke some in combat or whatever.

He ruturns from Vietnam in July 1968. He spent the entire time in country near the DMZ at places like The Rockpile, Ca Lu, OP Texas, Con Thien, Cam Lo, the hills surrounding Khe Sahn, and Camp Carrol.
This thread is a great read about the malfunctioning in Vietnam...

Link Posted: 6/10/2009 2:06:40 PM EST
Originally Posted By KurtVF:
Originally Posted By F4ENUT:
Were good enough in 68 and 69 so they should be good enough for 09.


Go to the magazine forum.. If you don't have the newest fad magazine they will tell you you have one foot in the grave even if you are only going to the range to plink.



lol.. this is so true. I don't think anything compares to the fruityness of the modern tactical AR fad nonsense. Its almost comparable to high school girls and their clothing brands. VLTOR this PMAG that... meanwhile half the stuff hasn't even been around long enough to be truly proven in combat. I'm willing to bet a lot more people have been taken out by M16A1s with aluminum magazines than by a 25lb bushmaster m4gery that has all of circuit city and best buy hanging off of its handguards and a 6 position stock with batteries in it and a remote control but try to tell that to these armchair tactical internet commandos... going to the range with my retro AR is like showing up at middle school wearing non-name brand clothing.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 2:53:49 PM EST
Originally Posted By EagleArmsHBAR:
Since you asked:

OK, so I talked to my dad again about the rifle in Vietnam.

Here is what he told me today:

He arrives in Vietnam in June 1967 and immediately goes north to the DMZ area. He is with Kilo Co 3/9 Marines. He is issued a NIB XM16E1. He says it has the forward assist, 3 prong flash hider, and parkerized BCG. I have a pic of it and it also has a partial fence lower.

He is in a rifle platoon and sees his share of combat but has no trouble with his XM16E1.

About 1/2 way through his tour (I am guessing Dec 67 or Jan 68), Kilo Company is told to report to an area where there is a truck with two armorer in it that are inspecting rifles. They wait in line to get the rifles looked at and everyone in line was excited to possibly get issued a brand new rifle. They observe a pile of old rifle in the truck and another pile of boxes that contain new M16A1s with birdcage flash hiders.

When it is his turn, they inspect the barrel of his rifle and say that it is OK and hand it back to him. He really wanted a new rifle because he thought that would be cool, so he bent the cleaning rod and started scraztching the chamber and bore all to hell so that they will give him a new one.

He goes through the line three times and each time they say his rifle is still OK. At that point he thinks to himself, "Oh shit I hope I did not fuck up the barrel with my cleaning rod."

Several in his company got the new rifles with the birdcage, but not him. He goes on to say that he did "go through" 5 or 6 rifles during his tour but it was not the function that was an issue. I guess he broke some in combat or whatever.

He ruturns from Vietnam in July 1968. He spent the entire time in country near the DMZ at places like The Rockpile, Ca Lu, OP Texas, Con Thien, Cam Lo, the hills surrounding Khe Sahn, and Camp Carrol.
This thread is a great read about the malfunctioning in Vietnam...
Thank your Dad for his service from me...And tell him I said "welcome home"



Link Posted: 6/10/2009 3:14:51 PM EST
I'd rather have a chrome lined barrel if I had a choice as I'd rather have something that could last longer. That being said if SHTF I'll take whatever weapon I can get my hands on.
Link Posted: 6/10/2009 5:11:07 PM EST
I was in the Marine Corps from 68-72 , when I went to Staging Bn before going to Viet Nam in erly 70 we recived well used M 16s that had been to Viet Nam and returned , mine was a E1 i remember that it would never fully chamber the first round from a magazine I had to use the Frd Asst every time no matter how well I cleaned it it would then work with no problems after helping the first round into the chamber, this did not endear me to the M 16 as I had never had any problems with My M 14, s , when I got to Viet Nam I was issued a H&R M 16 and never had any problems with it , I could not now say for sure what the problem was with the E1 , but that was My experance
Link Posted: 6/11/2009 7:08:52 PM EST
Golly! How ever did all those GIs ever fight WWII in the Pacific Theatre without chrome-lined barrels?

Originally Posted By LonghunterCO:
Well given a choice it is "only chrome lined" all the way. WIth that said I am a make do kind of guy, so I would make it work if that is what I had.


Link Posted: 6/11/2009 7:27:02 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/11/2009 7:28:00 PM EST by Morg308]
Originally Posted By Model_One:
Golly! How ever did all those GIs ever fight WWII in the Pacific Theatre without chrome-lined barrels?

Originally Posted By LonghunterCO:
Well given a choice it is "only chrome lined" all the way. WIth that said I am a make do kind of guy, so I would make it work if that is what I had.




Well, the answer is, they DID have trouble with unlined chambers in WWII from what I understand. When the AR-15 was adopted, the Army wanted a chrome-lined chamber because of experiencing the very same problems in the Pacific on various weapons. Someone came up with chroming the chamber, and the fix stuck. Of course, I live in Arizona, so humidity is not much of an issue. I would still prefer that my chamber at least was chrome-lined, but hey, I'll deal. I just got thinking the other day that a guy could do far worse in a pinch than an early M16 clone and a medium ALICE pack (no frame).
Link Posted: 6/12/2009 11:26:56 AM EST
The biggest advantage to having a chrome lined barrel is that it will effectively double your barrel life. That is one of the big reasons uncle sam has chrome lined barrels for military weapons.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 7:02:17 PM EST
While I would use whatever is closest if SHTF or Red Dawn or whatever, what would be my biggest concern is twist rate. If I was in an environment where 55 grain was all that was available - 1:12 (or 14) would be fine, chrome lined or not.

If you're talking for real SHTF/TEOTWAWKI - with all the available ammo in the US today, your chances of 55 grain 100% of the time are what I would consider to be low. Unless you know my system for keeping ammo separated, you could pick up one of my mags and be firing 55, 62, or 75 grains!

I'd prefer a 1:9" twist for SHTF, chrome lined or not, only for the ability to to fire whatever I can find. I'd hate to have to engage at 200m with 1:12 twist with 75 grain ammo.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 3:02:04 PM EST
Originally Posted By Model_One:
Golly! How ever did all those GIs ever fight WWII in the Pacific Theatre without chrome-lined barrels?

Originally Posted By LonghunterCO:
Well given a choice it is "only chrome lined" all the way. WIth that said I am a make do kind of guy, so I would make it work if that is what I had.




Not only that, but remember they used corrosive ammo. After using corrosive ammo you had to clean the barrel daily for a few days after each use. Good question, how the hell did they do it? easy, it was the "Greatest Generation"

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 5:29:44 PM EST
Originally Posted By madmanblake:
While I would use whatever is closest if SHTF or Red Dawn or whatever, what would be my biggest concern is twist rate. If I was in an environment where 55 grain was all that was available - 1:12 (or 14) would be fine, chrome lined or not.

If you're talking for real SHTF/TEOTWAWKI - with all the available ammo in the US today, your chances of 55 grain 100% of the time are what I would consider to be low. Unless you know my system for keeping ammo separated, you could pick up one of my mags and be firing 55, 62, or 75 grains!

I'd prefer a 1:9" twist for SHTF, chrome lined or not, only for the ability to to fire whatever I can find. I'd hate to have to engage at 200m with 1:12 twist with 75 grain ammo.


I totally agree - however, at this time all my barrels are 1:12 - I would like a 1:9 Bushy M4 barrel for my SHTF build, but unfortunately I'm unemplyed again, so I have to use what I have available. 727 Carbine build isn't done yet, but when it is, that'll be my primary - still hoping to make enough soon to finish the 727 build with that M4 barrel. Looks like I'll just finish a 652 for now, (still a 1:12 barrel) and finish the 9mm build as a pistol until I can afford a tax stamp. This up and down working then not working is really screwing with my carbine plans.

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 5:58:54 PM EST
Yeah, that'll do it. sorry to hear it man.

My response is based on best case scenario - if 1:12 is what you got, it'll do.

I lucked into a BM superlight barrel, but other than that all my retro is 1:12. My XM16E1 isn't chrome lined either, and I haven't shot it yet...once I get it sighted in and all, we'll see. damned weekends are too short and far between.
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