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Posted: 10/2/2014 5:24:35 PM EST
So I have been on a spending binge fixing up a mint condition pre ban rifle. When I lived in a free state while I was in the Army, I owned several ARs, some had free floating barrels. Now all of these rifles did the job just fine, but they really didn't seem any more or less accurate than the non free floating m4s I shot at work (and Ive shot plenty of .556 being an 11B), although nicer triggers DID make a big difference. I do remember being told that since the M4 rail wasn't free floating, you should re zero the rifle after you put an M203 on it, which makes sense. But I do not think mounting an M203 is a concern I will encounter anytime soon.

So the question is, now that I am a poor college student who sold all his guns and is trying to start again:

Does a free floating barrel (I.E a more expensive hand-guard/ rail system) really make a perceivable difference to a rifle meant for intermediate combat distance (450 meters or closer)? It seems to me that most people cant out shoot their guns, and I am definitely not an exception.

What is the hive mind's opinion?
Link Posted: 10/2/2014 5:52:51 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/2/2014 5:53:36 PM EST by MS556]
Accuracy is primarily a function of your barrel's ability. If you can shoot MOA or close to it with consistent pressure on your present handguard, and good ammo, then a free float will allow you to have that degree of precision regardless of whether shooting prone, with a sling, from sandbags, from a bipod or at benchrest. That's if you do your part. This will become especially noticeable at longer distances. There will be no pressure on the barrel to affect POI. But if you have a 3-4 MOA barrel, then no free float rail is going to improve that.
Link Posted: 10/2/2014 6:09:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/2/2014 6:09:12 PM EST by Lancelot]
Topic Moved
Link Posted: 10/2/2014 7:00:07 PM EST
If I'm replacing a HG I figure I might as well go the extra step and FF it. A high quality second hand FF rail can can be had for 100 to 140 in the EE.

Pressure on your barrel from your HG can and will cause POI shifts. So it depends on wether or not that makes a difference to you and the type of shooting you do.

Link Posted: 10/3/2014 9:45:55 AM EST
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Originally Posted By MS556:
Accuracy is primarily a function of your barrel's ability. If you can shoot MOA or close to it with consistent pressure on your present handguard, and good ammo, then a free float will allow you to have that degree of precision regardless of whether shooting prone, with a sling, from sandbags, from a bipod or at benchrest. That's if you do your part. This will become especially noticeable at longer distances. There will be no pressure on the barrel to affect POI. But if you have a 3-4 MOA barrel, then no free float rail is going to improve that.
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Agreed
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