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Posted: 3/4/2024 8:37:40 PM EDT
I don't like the standard charging handle due to the ability of gas to blow straight back (yes, I know the RTV trick and about fancy gas buster handles. Solving symptoms, not the disease....and I have tried them) and its really awkward to use when in a cramped position.  

Side chargers solve the cramped operation issue and have good potential to solve, or at least mitigate, the gas going out the back.

There are numerous "dual" side charges, which retain the charging handle, which is nice, but not what I'm after.  

Gibbz and New Frontier seem to have amazingly similar products.  I don't know how patent infringements work but Gibbz has not been afraid to go after many others so New Frontier either has an agreement with them or they settled somehow.

Regardless, I liked the New Frontier upper, with the charging handle on the left (specifically the C-4 Side Charging Upper) and went for it.

The fit and finish are great.  The catch on the charger has just the right amount of tension.  The fit to my CMMG lower is perfect.

I run a 45ACP RDB, which requires a fake 9mm gas key (from New Frontier) to keep things straight and allows the proprietary bolt cam key to fit.  It has two ways to fit, only one works to allow the action to cycle.  I, of course, installed it the wrong way first..........easy fix though.  Pic shows the "correct" way for me

This upper is a touch louder than a standard upper for some reason (I shoot suppressed so can hear these things) but the side charge is vastly superior.

I was surprised to find that the charging handle does not dig into my body when carrying the rifle.  That's really nice.  Seems like it should, but it doesn't.

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Link Posted: 3/4/2024 10:43:59 PM EDT
IIRC, with respect to patents, NFA and Gibbz are parties along with two or three other companies that have a cross-licensing agreement.

MHO, YMMV, etc.
Link Posted: 3/5/2024 8:10:13 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By SecondAmend:
IIRC, with respect to patents, NFA and Gibbz are parties along with two or three other companies that have a cross-licensing agreement.

MHO, YMMV, etc.
View Quote

THAT is very interesting.  I'd like to know more.

Thank you
Link Posted: 3/5/2024 8:26:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: AugustineBolishbatfe] [#3]
My understanding is that NFA manufactures for Gibbz, or they use a common OEM.

If you're going to buy one, be ready to gauge it.  I bought a billet MG4 (when they still had them) along with a billet lower.  Long story short, a well-known barrel manufacturer took a look at the thing, gauged it and told me it was out of spec (the diameter of the barrel extension was too big)  I sent it into Gibbz (who obviously didn't believe me), but they confirmed that it was out of spec.  Of course, they quit making them out of billet, so I have a bastardized billet lower receiver.

Oh, and I still don't have a replacement upper (a forged upper this time) and it's been MORE THAN A YEAR.
Link Posted: 3/11/2024 5:37:52 PM EDT
I do like this upper and the side charging is just what I wanted.  

Oddly, I've developed some issues both with Glock mags, which have always been flawless and with ETS mags which have always been 95% in my standard CMMG upper.  

For initial testing I've been running the same ammo and the same mags that I was before I swapped uppers.

I'm getting a surprising number of double feeds or failed ejection which results in the spent case trying to get fed at the same time as the next round in the mag.

I have not seen a pattern in regards to how many rounds have gone through the mags to a jamb.  So far it seems random.  Sometimes I can run a full mag, sometimes I get three or more jambs a mag.  

All of my mags get rated after use.  Check mark for good, x for I had a jamb.  All of the mags that went through the standard upper have check marks, so this doesn't seem to be a mag issue.

I did try a heavier buffer, and that helped a little bit.

Any ideas?  Now that I've got the ergonomics I want, I desire the reliability that I had before with the standard upper.
Link Posted: 3/11/2024 6:30:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: IdahoPCCinc] [#5]
I have like 4 of these for different builds....like Glock mags, Colt mags, Mp5 mags, etc.
Some have New Frontier lowers...some are from other manufacturers.

Use them mostly for doing various steel or USPSA matches.

Never had any issues with them.
I have the charging handle extension on a few...but they do take up a little more space in the gun safe.

Being right handed....its nice to be able to charge it while keeping right hand on the grip..
It can get a little tricky to hold bolt catch with left hand and use right hand to pull the handle back to lock it open.

Link Posted: 3/11/2024 6:38:28 PM EDT
Hmmmmmm. Well, I'm glad you are having good luck. What calibers are you running?  You definitely have solid experience and you need the gun to run when you need it to.

I'm curious to know if the 45ACP / 45 Super / 450SMC that I'm running just doesn't quite fit out of the ejection port.  Random shells bounce around and cause malfunctions.

As for manipulating the bolt release and all that.  I strongly suggest you try a Smith Tactics Battle-Bar.  I have them on all of my lowers.  Right hand stays on the grip, thumb can lock the bolt back or release it.  Left hand only has to charge or do other tasks.  Its a very nice piece of kit, and if it somehow fails, you immediately go back to the original design.  No harm, no foul.

They are well made and fit well.    I'm a fan.
Link Posted: 3/12/2024 5:07:08 PM EDT
I've got a couple of the Gibbz pattern side charge receivers on 16 in. bbl. 9mm builds.  One with LRBHO and the other without.  Nice upper receivers, but the biggest issue is the cost -  more than double what a slick side conventional upper can be had for.  I was thinking about getting another one, but they're out of stock at New Frontier and for whatever reason, I can't get on the Gibbz website (it's one of several website that I can't access), so the price point became moot.

MHO, YMMV, etc.
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