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Posted: 7/8/2004 10:37:37 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/8/2004 10:38:11 AM EDT by Forest]
First off I want to express my thanks to the those who posted here and in the Rifles/Uppers forum their tips on removing the front sight base - they were ALL very helpful (as was the search function to find those older threads).

In this thread I want to outline the process I went through to install the DD foreend as there are no written instructions (as far as I can tell) and hopefull this thread will help others (and people can post some tips on installing the variouse free float systems).

Ok first you'll need to gather the right tools to do the job, using the right tools definately helps.

What are the right tools?
- Moly Disulfide greast (w/o graphite)
- AR Barrel wrench
- Torque wrench (I do it by the book - you seat of the pants types don't need it)
- 1/8" punch
- Concave tip punch (also known as a taper pin punch - either get the real tool from Brownells or Stanley make a 3 pack of nail punches - the red one has a large concave tip and works pretty good).
- Heavy Hammer (2-3lbs )
- Vice (hopefully it also has an anvil or is built like one)
- Duct Tape (seriously this is a VERY important tool - especially if you don't want to mar the barrel and/or sight)
- Action block
- Strap Wrench
- square or long optic mount.

Sometimes you'll need a rubber mallet/hammer to help with the removal of stubborn front sights once the pins are removed.

For tough taper pins you'll also need Liquid Wrench or Kroil (penetrating oils).

Hopefully you don't have a pinned on muzzle device (if you do that will have to be removed first - and this can be a real bear). After that the hardest part is getting the taper pins removed. My lightweight Bushmaster turned out to be fairly easy - the HBAR Bushy I did last week was a Bitch! -(I needed to soak it in penetrating oil (not WD40))

First I removed the upper from the rifle then the handguards/lights/optics from the upper.

Then I coverd the front sight, barrel foward of the front sight, and handguard cap with duct tape. The areas over the taper pins were left uncovered. The front sight actually had 2 layers. The Duct Tape prevents the metal from getting dinged up.

I used the concave tip punch with a 3 lbs hammer and gave a whack on the end of the pin. The Front sight was resting on my Vice/Anvil so there was no 'give' - all the force went into the pin.

The pins can only be driven one way. Hit them on the left side of the front sight (the side that has the bolt release on it not the side with the ejection port). A couple of good wacks loosened the first pin - then I went on to loosen the second pin (I consider it 'loose' when the head of the pin is flush with the front sight or slighly below). Then I used a 1/8" pin punch to tap out the taper pins the rest of the way. With the pins free I removed the Duct Tape and used ArmaLube (a lubricant) on the barrel under the front sight and from the front sight to the muzzle (some people use grease). With a bit of effort (and a little twisting) I was able to pull the front sight foward (gas tube and all).

At this point I noticed some light rust under where the front sight's rings had gone around the barrel. I used some rust remover to clean up the barrel and front sight. I then used some Cold Blue (2 times) on the bare barrel areas and on the front sight (to help protect the areas from rust in the future - military barrels are parkerized in these areas).

But the upper in the receiver block and the block into the vice. The barrel nut is pretty easy to remove after that using the barrel wrench. I first slid over the slip ring, put some moly grease on the upper receiver threads, then installed the aluminum barrel nut to the prescribed torque (30 ft-lbs), I then removed the barrel nut and restalled 2 more times - on the third installation I torqued to 30ft-lbs then kept turning till a hole lined up (at 32-35 ft-lbs) with the one in the receiver (yes I followed the barrel installation instructions as outlined in the -23&P on page 3-41).

I found one of my stainless pins in the barrel nut to be scored and difficult to remove/insert - a couple minutes with a small file cleaned it up enough to fit smoothly. These pins are installed at 3:00 and 9:00 in the barrel nut (to prevent the float tube from twisting)> I then put a little grease on the outer threads of the Railed section of the free float tube and started turning the locking ring. I was able to get the edge of the locking ring to almost touch the rails (near the end I had to use a strap wrench to tighten it). For this I also used the torque/loosen/Torque/loosen/torque/loosen methodology to insure a good mating of the bearing surfaces. I should point out after the first tightening you might want to check that the upper rail of the handguard is aligned with the rail on the receiver (with a square or a long optic mount - half mounted on the upper/half on the handguard). Once tightened you are almost there.

Now you have to reinstall the front sight - again the front of the barrel should have a light coat of oil or grease (I used ArmaLube due to its bonding properties when heated). The sight will slide into place and the gas tube should slide right back into the upper receiver. Put the pins back in (you might have to twist the front sight back and forth a bit to get it line up 'just right'). Remember there is a large side and a small side to the pins. Small side goes in first. It enters from the right (ejection port) side. Cover the front sight (and barrel) with duct tape again. I used the vice to press the pins back into place (put the lower part of the front sight into the vice and close it. Then I pulled out the 3lbs hammer and concave punch and hit both pins a couple of times to insure they were well seated.

Remove duct tape and you're good to go.
Link Posted: 7/8/2004 11:40:57 AM EDT

I should point out after the first tightening you might want to check that the upper rail of the handguard is aligned with the rail on the receiver

This is the only part of a DD install that is touchy. The barrel nut has to be in the exact correct rotational position in order for the DD forend's top rail surface to be perfectly level with the receiver's flattop rail.

Be sure to check this before you reinstall the front sight tower.

Good write-up Forest.

Link Posted: 7/8/2004 1:09:21 PM EDT
Thanks for the kind words CMOS.

BTW here are some pics of what it looks like:

Side view of the carbine:

Close up showing the locking ring:

The front of the Daniels Defense:
Link Posted: 7/8/2004 1:27:16 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/8/2004 1:28:34 PM EDT by CMOS]

Right now I'm building a new M4 upper with a DD 9.5 FSP - the model that surrounds the front sight assembly. This is going to be sweet.

Just finished building a 20" with a DD 12.0 forend.


Link Posted: 7/8/2004 1:45:17 PM EDT
Ohh I like that! My 20" is going to have a Troy MRF-R. I'm not as concerned about weight with that one and as I don't shoot it as often I can't justify the extra $100.

I'd be interesting in seeing pics of your M4.

Link Posted: 7/8/2004 6:27:28 PM EDT

I should be done assembling everything in a few days. I'll post some pics when I'm done.

Link Posted: 7/22/2004 11:41:53 AM EDT
Got Pics?
Link Posted: 7/22/2004 3:17:42 PM EDT
Damn, almost forgot! Here's my new M4 with the DD 9.5FSP!


Link Posted: 7/22/2004 3:56:41 PM EDT
CMOS, thanks for that M4 pic. That's pretty much exactly what I'm looking for in my first build!

Of course, now that you've gone and done it, I'll have to come up with another idea. Maybe a tricked 870?
Link Posted: 7/22/2004 6:19:56 PM EDT

If you trick your 870 I want some pics. Seriously. I have an 870 Marine Magnum that I might want to do some more work on. I'm just not sure if a stock with a pistol grip will really enhance the shooting performance of the shotgun or not. I hear conflicting reports. Please shoot me some pics if you do any work to yours.

Oh, the Scattergun Technologies Ghost Ring Sights are awesome on the 870.

Link Posted: 7/24/2004 11:19:26 AM EDT
Thanks for posting - she looks really good!
Link Posted: 9/23/2004 8:52:41 AM EDT
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