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Posted: 8/10/2011 8:03:32 PM EDT
I have a Del-Ton mid-length upper assembly with a regular 2-piece handguard. It has a standard A2 front sight base and flash hider. I would like to replace the current handguard with a free float tube, but keep the rest of the configuration as-is. What parts can not be reused? I am assuming that the flash hider crush washer will be toast, but will FSB or gas tube pins, or any other  pieces  need replacement?
Link Posted: 8/10/2011 8:13:41 PM EDT
Not unless you fuck up real bad
Link Posted: 8/11/2011 2:50:21 AM EDT
depends on which FF rail you use.  Some like the DD can be install by simply taking your old handguards off and bolting the DD rail onto the stock barrel nut and collar.

Which are you going be using.
Link Posted: 8/11/2011 6:31:52 AM EDT
If you are getting a free float tube that uses the existing Barrel nut and have to take the FSB off. These are the parts that will get removed or need to be replaced.

Crush washer
Delta ring will have to be removed (cut with dremel or other tool)

This process is also dependent on your skill set to remove these items and the tools at your disposal.

If you have the tools to separate your barrel from your upper receiver your options are only limited to what you want to spend.

I assumed you want to keep the FSB so a 9 inch MID rail is what you are looking for.  


If you remove your flash hider the next step would be to knock the pins out of the fsb.   They are usually tapered so they go only one way.  Those pins should be used again and shouldn't be destroyed unless you do something extremely wrong.  You can then slide the FSB off with the gas tube intact so you don't have to mess with that pin anyway.

good luck

Striker071
Link Posted: 8/11/2011 8:25:52 AM EDT
The gas tube roll pin is small.  If you don't smash it, you might lose it.  I'd order a spare, along with a gas tube pin punch.
Link Posted: 8/11/2011 7:13:54 PM EDT
That's about what I thought. I'll most likely be going with a vented tube, nothing fancy. Does the delta ring require cutting, or does the whole assembly come apart?
Link Posted: 8/11/2011 8:56:19 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Gingerbreadman:
That's about what I thought. I'll most likely be going with a vented tube, nothing fancy. Does the delta ring require cutting, or does the whole assembly come apart?


Mine came apart with a pair of snap ring pliers.

Once I had the barrel nut / delta ring off it was easy to take apart.
Link Posted: 8/11/2011 9:18:40 PM EDT
Originally Posted By strat81:
The gas tube roll pin is small.  If you don't smash it, you might lose it.  I'd order a spare, along with a gas tube pin punch.


You dont have to pull the gas tube out of the FSB.  I always tap out the taper pins and pull the gas tube out attached to the FSB.  Crush washers can be used more then once but its a good Idea to order a new one
Link Posted: 8/12/2011 4:36:35 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/12/2011 4:37:47 AM EDT by Herknav90]
Taper pins on FSB - It's a trick to knock these out...Beat the crap out of it...Not your FSB or gun.  Putting them back is a process to.  Align one side with the appropiate sized punch and tap the other side in to 90%.  Remove the punch and then tap the other side in to 90%.  Then beat the things back in like they owe you money - OK, that might be too hard.  If you don't do this, you will have the FSB cant and you'll post some sobbing story about how the MFG of the barrel didn't do something correct. Nope, it was YOU.

The roll pin on the gas tube is easy to remove with a roll pin punch.  Use something like the Brownells Pin in/pin out block and you will have no issue resusing or losing this.  I recommend the roll pin holder set.  I have never dropped or lost one with this punch set.  Try is without, and you will probably tap and head a ping...Good luck finding the roll pin.  $40 is cheap compared to waiting 5-7 days for a new roll pin and paying sometimes expensive shipping if you are cunning.

I would not remove the snap ring or the delta ring off the barrel nut.  I would remove the entire thing as is and store is in a tupperware container with all the other pieces like the handguard cap.  

I would NEVER reuse a crush washer...They are stated to be a one shot deal.  Have people reused - Yep.  Issues - not many, but a few.  The idea is this thing crushes as you torque it down.  There is no torque requirement, and people will post something like 30-35 ft pounds - that is for the peel washer.  The crush is minumum of 90 degress and 460 degrees, so you have a WIDE range to time the stinking thing.  

I recommend you buy a FF tube that doesn't use the stock nut.  The quality of these aftermarket nuts is amazing, and the standard armorers wrench should work on the FF tube nuts.  I have used the Troy TRX and the YHM diamond plate FF tubes, and each has likes and dislikes.  You will hear about the Troy quality, and I don't disagree.  However, I really don't like the two screws that clamp the FF to the rifle - Sort of a wierd arrangement since the rest of the rail oozes quality.  I LOVE the YHM swedge locking ring.  It requires a tool, but there has been no issues.  Alignment of the Troy is a no brainer - Probably why so many people rave about the Troy.  However, the YHM can get the same great results with a little time and patients.

If you have any issues or questions, PM me directly.  I bet about 20 post will follow this bashing me with opinion...I got it boys, I got it!

Almost forgot...Link (Section 5)
Link Posted: 8/12/2011 5:50:38 AM EDT
Fwiw, the taper pins punch out muzzle facing left. Reinstall them muzzle facing right.  They may not be taper pins though. The last DTI barrel I used had straight pins.

If you have a dremel or cutoff wheel the FSB can become a low profile gas block in about a half hour then it is ready to paint with hi-temp black or your chosen firearms finish.

The PRI 5 pin barrel nut wrench is usable on USGI, Troy TRX, YHM, and other barrel nuts which index off the gas tube. About $25 and will use either a 3/8" or 1/2" torque wrench. Brownells has them.

And don't forget moly grease for the new barrel nut to get an accurate torque reading.
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