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Posted: 5/9/2004 1:18:24 PM EST
I am debating if the added expense of free floating a carbine is worth it. Please weigh in with your thoughts.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:18:24 PM EST
what kind of barrel do you have? HBAR or lightweight?

i have rasII and though I didn't really buy it because it was FF its a nice benifit... it helps with cooling for rapid fire and depending on a vertical grip it helps...

i'd say for general use there is no need... if its strickly a combat gun i'd do without unless your going to spend the cash... rasII is a good option... the m4 kac ras are cool... the DD 7.0(i think) are very light almost as much as the standard handguards...

if you have a stainless HBAR then yes i'd get it... expecially if use with bipod
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 2:29:23 PM EST
You know. I am on the same quest.

Between me and a few buddies we have a 20"" FF, 2 16" FF(One light barrel one SS1:8) and one 16" with regular handguard, and a 20" with regular handguard.


We are doing a study of those rifles at distances. So far the results for 16" isnt that good. At any distances beyond 100 yds, the 20" really out shines the 16".

I would say right now, 16" for CQB, 20" + for accuracy. So at 16" I would say the FF wont matter.

New ammos will be tried next week.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 3:19:37 PM EST
Thanks for that reply. Can you elaborate on your results between your FF 16 and sans FF 16?
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 3:25:11 PM EST
I have not chosen a barrel yet. My final setup will be of the Dissipator persuasion. Either BM's chrome lined HBar or one of their 16" M4 profiles for the weight savings is what I intend to go with.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 3:27:58 PM EST

Originally Posted By Timanator:
You know. I am on the same quest.

Between me and a few buddies we have a 20"" FF, 2 16" FF(One light barrel one SS1:8) and one 16" with regular handguard, and a 20" with regular handguard.


We are doing a study of those rifles at distances. So far the results for 16" isnt that good. At any distances beyond 100 yds, the 20" really out shines the 16".

I would say right now, 16" for CQB, 20" + for accuracy. So at 16" I would say the FF wont matter.

New ammos will be tried next week.



what are these tests that you and your friends are doing? Accuracy tests or fragmentation tests...

the same barrel that is 16" long and a 20" barrel are going to have equal accuracy... the only that will change is your velocity and trajectory... this is very well established... at 50m i am making my 16" chromelined barrel have 3 holes all touching each other... this is quite good enough... i use 68gr OTM which will even fragment out further... so
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 5:46:48 PM EST
Is your 16" barrel free floated or not
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 9:18:07 PM EST

Originally posted by Timanator: "You know. I am on the same quest.

Between me and a few buddies we have a 20"" FF, 2 16" FF(One light barrel one SS1:8) and one 16" with regular handguard, and a 20" with regular handguard.


We are doing a study of those rifles at distances. So far the results for 16" isnt that good. At any distances beyond 100 yds, the 20" really out shines the 16".

I would say right now, 16" for CQB, 20" + for accuracy. So at 16" I would say the FF wont matter.

New ammos will be tried next week.



I'm glad I know better.
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 10:17:00 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/9/2004 10:25:41 PM EST by CJan_NH]
My two dedicated 16" SHTF carbines are not freefloated, because minute-of-man accuracy is all that is required of them. I am in the middle of building a 16" midlength special purpose carbine however, and that will almost certainly be freefloated. It will be used primarily for pin shoots, punching paper, and scoring for beers against my shooting buddies-so I would like every possible edge in accuracy (either real or percieved ) that I can find.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, your choice to install depends primarily on how you intend to task the rifle. It certainly can't hurt, particularly with cooling-but is this weapon used in such a way that freefloating will give you a tangible benefit in other ways?

If that answer is yes, then go for it

And be sure to post pics when you do!
Link Posted: 5/9/2004 10:39:19 PM EST
Personally speaking, I wouldn't own a rifle which wasn't free floated unless it was one of the CMP M1 Garands. I just bought a 16" RRA carbine upper. I bought it with a free floated barrel.

Why not free float it?

Without a free flaoted barrel, any time you put any load on the handguard it will disturb the point of impact. As a cnsequence, bench shooting will have different zeroes than with a sling than standing, etc. etc.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 4:44:21 AM EST
BBl length doesn't always determind accuracy my friend...
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 4:54:35 AM EST
I have a Bushmaster 16" HBAR chrome-lined and I keep a log of my shooting to better grasp what my abilities with the rifle are. I started this log before I freefloated the barrel in September 2003 with a KAC FF-RAS.

Generally speaking, shooting from the bench or a very stable position, the best I could do with my non-FF barrel was 5-shot groups between 1.5" and 2" at 100yds shooting Santa Barbara SS109. I did have the occasional freak group (like the 4shots all on top of one another in a 1/4" square at 100 before the fifth opened it up to 1.5")...mostly though 1.5"-2" regularly.

Early September, I added a Magpul M93 stock. Shot once for groups with it. Groups with that stock and non FF barrel were about 1.5" average during that one session, so don't know if it helped or not.

Added the KAC FF-RAS later that month...5-shot groups from the bench or from a very stable position immediately went down to 1"-1.5" with the Santa Barbara SS109 and stayed there. I had not moved from the 1.5"-2" range for a long time before that, so I attribute the improvement mostly to equipment.

I like the FF-RAS... I think the combination of free-float and better cooling do make for a more accurate rifle. However, I can tell you that from a practical standpoint, I am not a good enough rifleman to notice the difference between a free-floated and non-free floated rifle in most practical positions (standing, kneeling, moving). The only time I can tell the difference is from a very stable, supported position like prone or benched.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 5:36:15 AM EST
I put a JP Enterprises FF tube on my 16" BM Dissy that I use for Limited class 3 gun matches.

Here's a pic:



Link Posted: 5/10/2004 2:55:38 PM EST
In terms of accuracy, you will gain a little. Maybe more important, if you plan on hanging a lot of heavy stuff on a lightweight carbine, your POI will not shift as much.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 3:59:15 PM EST
If you want to accessorize at all, you might as well free float while you're at it. My priority was a forward pistol grip, and I went with the RAS II. I love that damn thing.

For a defensive / SHTF rifle, I don't feel its necessary. As a lone actor, your shots will most likely be within 50 meters. But, a forward pistol grip, flashlight, etc., would be nice accesories that certainly won't hurt if you really gotta use the rifle. So, if you want these, go with a free float system.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 4:06:55 PM EST
I don't claim to be any sort of great shooter, but my free-floated (RAS MRE) 16" barrel - and I'm talking just the standard 1:7 chrome-lined type (DPMS), nothing fancy and match grade - consistently shoots 1 1/4 inch groups for me at 100 yards, and maintains that accuracy out to 200 yards, with 2.5 inch average extreme spread. This shooting has been from a bipod with Federal gold medal match ammo.

I know I couldn't pull off groups like that without a free-floated barrel - I can't pull of groups like that with my 20" non-free floated barrels!

I can't wait to test it out past 200 yards - I just need a range that can support those distances.


FWIW, another great thing about the RAS MRE is that it allows a well-forward bipod mounting position.
Link Posted: 5/10/2004 6:43:07 PM EST
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 3:27:21 AM EST
[Last Edit: 5/11/2004 3:34:48 AM EST by tonlocus]
If you get the M4 profile barrel you'll be sorry. I free floated mine with the GG&G forearm and after 5 shots it would heat up and vertical string up to 4" from POA. Replaced the barrel with a Wilson HBAR and it shoots great.

Here's a pic of the coyote gun with the old barrel. Under the handguard is only .65" in front of the chamber.

http://img18.photobucket.com/albums/v54/timonte/GUNS/AR15_002.jpg
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 3:54:00 AM EST
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 4:04:44 AM EST

Originally Posted By BookHound:

Originally Posted By tonlocus:
If you get the M4 profile barrel you'll be sorry. I free floated mine with the GG&G forearm and after 5 shots it would heat up and vertical string up to 4" from POA. Replaced the barrel with a Wilson HBAR and it shoots great.



That's interesting. I've never experienced vertical stringing with my Bushy M4-profile post-ban barrel, before or after adding a Daniel Defense free-float tube. This includes lots of shooting in a training class.


Nor have I.

Link Posted: 5/11/2004 4:28:56 AM EST
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 4:40:16 AM EST
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 5:28:43 AM EST
Just goes to show, if something bad is going to happen, it's going to happen to me. I guess I'm the only one to experience this. If it's not the barrel contour, then what? The GG&G just clamps on to the existing barrel nut. The Wilson barrel shoots like a champ. Under 3/4 MOA with no stringing at all.
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 5:33:47 AM EST

Originally Posted By tonlocus:
Just goes to show, if something bad is going to happen, it's going to happen to me. I guess I'm the only one to experience this. If it's not the barrel contour, then what? The GG&G just clamps on to the existing barrel nut. The Wilson barrel shoots like a champ. Under 3/4 MOA with no stringing at all.



My FF M4 profile barrel shoots just fine too. Maybe you just got bad barrel...
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 6:29:14 AM EST

Originally Posted By Yojimbo:

Originally Posted By tonlocus:
Just goes to show, if something bad is going to happen, it's going to happen to me. I guess I'm the only one to experience this. If it's not the barrel contour, then what? The GG&G just clamps on to the existing barrel nut. The Wilson barrel shoots like a champ. Under 3/4 MOA with no stringing at all.



My FF M4 profile barrel shoots just fine too. Maybe you just got bad barrel...



your barrel must have been jacked...
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 8:27:41 AM EST
Was the barrel stringing before you added the GG&G tube? Does it still string if you remove it?

Sounds like an odd problem, I haven't ever seen an M4 barrel that would string after only five rounds.
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 1:37:05 PM EST
FWIW, my 1 1/4 MOA (not benched) rifle mentioned above has an M4-profiled barrel. Definitely no "stringing" - and way more accurate then I am.
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 2:01:54 PM EST
I have 2 Colt M4s with RASIIs and M4 Colt with a M4RAS, none have "stringing" problems.
DOn't think its the M4 barrel...
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 4:50:33 PM EST
Well i don't want to hijack Gunzers thread andymore than I already have. Sorry Gunzer.

Suffice it to say that whether or not it was the barrel or not, the problem was fixed by replacing the barrel. I'll likely put it back together on another upper I have in it's original configuration and try it again, but for now the Wilson is doing very well in its place.
Link Posted: 5/11/2004 6:03:23 PM EST
I'm thinking of the same thing myself right now. Mainly is for plinking cans at 100yrd. Sometimes blasting stuff at 2 or 3 but I want it as a just in case type of gun.

Rough Decisions yano? And thinkign about fluted too
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