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Posted: 5/2/2005 1:46:28 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/2/2005 3:52:10 PM EDT by Firefoxammo]
Would appreciate some info on this.
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 1:59:30 PM EDT
Most telltale sign is that cast will have raised lettering and often a kind of grainy structure.
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 2:31:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Not_A_Llama:
Most telltale sign is that cast will have raised lettering and often a kind of grainy structure.



Or, just buy a new lower from any of the major manufacturers. Nobody, with the possible exception of Olympic, is making cast lowers any more. DPMS has even stopped selling them.

Rock River, Bushmaster, Stag, Century, DPMS, and scads of the smaller outfits are all selling forged pieces these days.
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 3:11:49 PM EDT
As a fellow CTer, I understand the fear of cast lowers as we throw ourselves at the first pre-ban we run into. I myself just bought one on Saturday (impulse gun show buy, awesome deal!).


Anyhoo, raised lettering is a MAJOR sign... just plain avoid it.

Second, and I have NEVER seen this online but learned it on Saturday, is forging marks as opposed to cast marks. Someone correct me if I'm wrong but it looks pretty foolproof.


OK, so you know the thin line you see on anything cast? Plastic toys, etc? That thin, raised line exists on forged lowers but is about 1/4 inch wide and was caused by the forging dies. This is ground down on easily accessible parts of the lower but look on the top part of the trigger area... like if you put your finger on the trigger and slid it upwards to the top and are now touching the lower itself. There will be a ridge from when it was forged or cast... thin ridge = cast, 1/4 inch ridge = forged.


If anyone disagrees or can provide support pics, have at it. I can't access my toys at the moment.


- BG
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 3:16:42 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/2/2005 3:22:39 PM EDT by VLODPG]
That sounded about right but! Even I would buy a cast reciever If the price was right.

The one Im selling is forged!
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 3:36:19 PM EDT
So let me ask this, What is the fuss over a Cast? Why are they not worthy? Or are they and most just prefer the Forged? Clue me in thanks.
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 4:30:45 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 6:06:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/2/2005 6:18:45 PM EDT by RBPRECISION]
Link Posted: 5/2/2005 6:56:11 PM EDT
The best of the castings would have to be Essential Arms. Their prean cast lowers were made by Ruger. They are making cast receivers again, but I am not sure if Ruger is still doing it for them. However, if you are looking for a preban, the EA\s are very good.

Link Posted: 5/2/2005 8:01:17 PM EDT
If you're looking at a DPMS then teh easiest way is to look at the serial number. Forged lowers have an 'f' on the front of the SN.
Link Posted: 5/3/2005 4:16:02 PM EDT
I heard (not positive) that cast lowers break easily because they are brittle.
Link Posted: 5/3/2005 8:46:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Grumple:
I heard (not positive) that cast lowers break easily because they are brittle.


There's a world of difference between "break easy" and "break easier than a forged part". Unless you're jumping out of airplanes you probably will not have to worry about cracking a cast lower.
Link Posted: 5/3/2005 9:07:18 PM EDT
I have a couple of rifles I built in the late 1980s on cast lowers-- including an Oly and an EA-- and I have beaten the snot out of them, and they're still running strong.

Oly hasn't made cast lowers in some time now.
Link Posted: 5/4/2005 10:31:19 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/4/2005 10:32:36 AM EDT by blackrazor]

Cast aluminum has a much lower tensile strength, and is brittle, so it shatters easily from impact. Castings are made from pouring molten metal into a mold.

Forged aluminum is much stronger, and MUCH more resistant to impacts. Forgings are made by placing raw metal into dies and pounding the dies together with a huge hydrolic ram until it is in the shape of the die. This forces the molecules closer together and locks them together, giving much more strength.



Castings aren't that bad. If they are done well, these days a casting can be just as good as forging. Most people prefer forgings just because they feel better about it. The receiver of an AR is not a heavily stressed part, cast or forged it shouldn't matter. Oh, and the molecules are not closer or further apart in a forging or casting, they are exactly the same. The choice of alloy/heat treatment affects the crystal structure of the metal, which in turn affects the density/packing of the atoms... not the forging/casting process. The choice of the alloy and heat treatment is far more important than forged vs. cast.
Link Posted: 5/4/2005 1:03:50 PM EDT
A couple years ago edpmedic and I took the Blackwater/Bushmaster armorer class. As we were assembling the lowers, I heard a woeful "Oh shit". Sure enough, a guy that was using a DPMS cast lower had been tapping the trigger guard pin into the lower. He snapped the little leg that accepts the pin right off the lower.
No cast lowers for me, thanks.
Link Posted: 5/4/2005 5:01:49 PM EDT
Well I have to say this thread took an interesting twist and has helped me understand the differences between cast and forged. I happen to have a DPMS cast preban but didn't know until this thread and I also have a forged Bushmaster post ban---didn't know it until this thread. Anyway, I have to say there is a difference in the overall appearence between the two , cast is a little grainy and not as "slick" . Whether or not the cast is less durable can only be determined by time and overall use. If anything happens to it I will let everyone know.
Link Posted: 5/4/2005 8:13:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/4/2005 8:14:43 PM EDT by Kisara]
Here's a photo of a Hesse, I captured this a year or two ago on ARFcom for my huge photo file of "broken" AR stuff. I have a similar photo of another Hesse that also cracked in about the same place, might be on another hard drive. I'm pretty sure Hesse's were cast.
Link Posted: 5/5/2005 3:33:07 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/5/2005 3:33:41 AM EDT by user426]

Originally Posted By knightone:
The best of the castings would have to be Essential Arms. Their prean cast lowers were made by Ruger. They are making cast receivers again, but I am not sure if Ruger is still doing it for them. However, if you are looking for a preban, the EA\s are very good.





+1 I've had my EA for about 5 years and I've been putting about 300-500 rounds thru it every weekend.....never a problem......for those of us in AWB states they are probably the best deal around.....if you can still find one.....
Link Posted: 5/5/2005 8:39:11 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/5/2005 8:41:49 AM EDT by blackrazor]
Kisara,

Yeah, I've seen that busted of the Hesse receiver before. While it certainly looks damning with regards to the quality of Hesse products, I'm not sure if it proves that castings are insufficient. There are many different ways to produce a casting, some being much better than others (such as Ruger's). While a good forging is still probably better than a good casting, a well cast AR receiver should last forever. The fracture of the Hesse receiver is more likely due to a manufacturing fault, like an impurity or improper heat treatment. BTW, does anyone know what exactly led to this failure?

on further inspection, if you look at the top of the broken piece, you notice it looks like it's been struck by something. Perhaps this person used a carbine length buffer in a rifle length stock, the BC traveled too far back, impacted the lower receiver and sheared it off... this is the kind of failure I would expect in such a situation.
Link Posted: 5/5/2005 8:42:37 AM EDT
Is it safe to say that forgings are slightly more uniform in metal structure that cast, since the metal isnt subject to thermal and tensile change as it cools and changes phase?
Link Posted: 5/5/2005 9:25:55 AM EDT
Another photo someone previously posted on ARFcom:

Maybe the members who took those photos can tell the story.

Link Posted: 5/5/2005 9:47:33 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Kisara:
Another photo someone previously posted on ARFcom:

Maybe the members who took those photos can tell the story.










Link Posted: 5/5/2005 9:55:08 AM EDT
ouch.
Link Posted: 5/5/2005 10:35:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/5/2005 12:38:28 PM EDT by VLODPG]
Thats why all my 10 11 12+ AR's are forged!
Link Posted: 5/6/2005 4:05:37 AM EDT
As was pointed out before cast is not always bad. Ruger investment casts almost all of their firearms, even the big boys, so if done right, they can be strong. On the other hand, forged is I think almost always better ... at least in steel.

For the little price difference, I would go with forged. I do have what was suppose to be a preban DPMS (found out later it was not) and it is cast. However, I have not had any troubles with it at all. When it breaks, I will replace it with a forged piece.
Link Posted: 5/13/2005 10:18:04 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Kisara:
Here's a photo of a Hesse, I captured this a year or two ago on ARFcom for my huge photo file of "broken" AR stuff. I have a similar photo of another Hesse that also cracked in about the same place, might be on another hard drive. I'm pretty sure Hesse's were cast.
tinyurl.com/5wu6q



I did that to a Colt lower. On a bayonet assault course
Link Posted: 5/15/2005 9:39:45 AM EDT
anybody here know anything about elisco frame which is made in the Philippines under licence from colt i think in the 80's. are these frames forged or cast?
Link Posted: 5/17/2005 1:42:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mtho:
anybody here know anything about elisco frame which is made in the Philippines under licence from colt i think in the 80's. are these frames forged or cast?



Check out the tell tale signs that have been posted
1- Grainy texture to the lower
2- Raised Lettering as opposed to inlay

These are two common way to tell them apart.
Link Posted: 5/17/2005 2:20:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mtho:
anybody here know anything about elisco frame which is made in the Philippines under licence from colt i think in the 80's. are these frames forged or cast?



To my knowledge, all Colt licensed M16 varients are made the same way Colt makes them; forged. The onlt variations I've ever heard of were in barrel rifling methods.
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 3:40:35 PM EDT
I own multiple BM lowers, a Colt and an Eagle, but one of my favorite to shoot is my cast preban Essential Arms, the fit and finish are flawless... I probably wouldn't put a RDIAS in it, but for semi and if the price is right who cares!

Link Posted: 5/18/2005 3:48:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Kisara:
Here's a photo of a Hesse, I captured this a year or two ago on ARFcom for my huge photo file of "broken" AR stuff. I have a similar photo of another Hesse that also cracked in about the same place, might be on another hard drive. I'm pretty sure Hesse's were cast.
tinyurl.com/5wu6q



Bad example. If Hesse made a forged lower it would break the same way!
Link Posted: 5/19/2005 8:10:01 PM EDT
"Essential Arms, the fit and finish are flawless"

Maybe for a essentail Arms!

Link Posted: 5/21/2005 10:38:59 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/21/2005 10:41:43 PM EDT by Firefoxammo]

Originally Posted By VLODPG:
"Essential Arms, the fit and finish are flawless"

Maybe for a essentail Arms!




Seems like everyone has an answer .
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:07:21 PM EDT
I meant it was a "good casting job", no dings, nicks or gouges, the finish was consistent, no gaps between the upper and lower.

Maybe not as strong as a Bushy, but it isn't purple like my preban Bushy is!

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