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Posted: 7/24/2003 10:56:16 AM EDT
Hi...

Picked up a SureFire M500A and the fit is less than desirable...

When they are installed on my Colt, there is a 1/16" gap at the delta ring end between the handguards for about a inch.... Tapered to nothing.. First thoughts they were warped, like a bad fitting pair of handguards. There two small bosses in the barrel nut grove that are supposed to crush around the barrel nut. I cleaned out some of that to make a tigher fit...

I spoke to SureFire's Tech Support and the end are bowed to give a spring loaded effect. Or at least this the line that was fed me! Did not get a warm fuzzy felling and felt like I was being fed a line of crap, but at this point I am keeping an open mind.... Return it to the dealer is the canned responce I got... The dealer is being super over this, I am just trying to get some ideas here..

I like the functionallity but they look like shit on the rifle... Is this the way they are supposed to look?

Any suggestions on how to get a better fit?

oldedantucker@hotmail.com
Link Posted: 7/24/2003 12:09:47 PM EDT
Let me try to remember... I had the same problem and I didn't believe that was supposed to fit like this so I searched and I found the problem. There is a part that looks like a sprocket where the handguards are supposed to fit. On the inside of the handguards, you will notice 2 (I believe it's 2) half moon that were added. These are supposed to fit right between two teeth of the sprocket... but they don't. They are offset just a little and it's enough to create that gap. You will notice on these half-moon some marks where they rubbed against the teeth as you were trying to push it in. You need to trim it down just a little on both handguards until it fits. That should be enough to resolve the issue. I hope this helps...
Link Posted: 7/24/2003 12:44:28 PM EDT
Weapons Lover.... I did remove the material on the half moons. To the point where they are seating all the way to the barrel nut.... Maybe I need to fit some more????? After $340 you would expect them to fit? Maybe I expect to much....
Link Posted: 7/24/2003 2:49:58 PM EDT
Originally Posted By pickupdan: After $340 you would expect them to fit? Maybe I expect to much....
View Quote
no, that's not expecting too much...for that kind of money, they should fit AND be personally delivered by Anna K herself. I would hope that Surefire has some fix in mind, or at the very least should make folks aware that in certain situations, fit is less than perfect.
Link Posted: 7/24/2003 4:20:14 PM EDT
Is the gap present when the two halves are off of the rifle? I just went and checked mine and there is no gap either on or off of my bushy M4. If the gap is still there when they are off of your rifle, I think your "warped" idea is correct. My M500A is about a year old and there is no "springloaded" design that I can see. Sounds like a load of crap to me. For the kind of bux they cost, I wouldn't hesitate to return it for a replacement.
Link Posted: 7/24/2003 4:36:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/25/2003 8:40:17 AM EDT by pickupdan]
The retailer that I bought it from just got off the phone with SF Engineering and they informed him that the HG's are supposed to look that way and that you are to [b]"SLAM THEM TOGETHER"[/b] to use their words. They are made to be very tight fitting and have to apply a lot of pressure.He was kind of surprised to hear them say that. But if I break them then SF will replace them.
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 4:57:48 AM EDT
Spent some time last night and fitted the hand guards to the Colt. I did not take the SF engineers advice, slamming plastic would only end up with bad results. But in slowly removing the two half-moon protrusions in the area that fits around the barrel nut, one can obtain a snug but proper fit.... There still is still a small crack but I believe this will "seat" with use. If not, I know now how to further fit it..... My only comment would be, there should be some detailed instructions or reference to this subject enclosed with the product. The consumer is not normally brainless, but needs to understand the intent of the feature that are incorporated.. Mainly a prestressed (warped) hand guard to create a VERY snug fit..... Some fitting maybe required!.... That's my two cents worth.... Knowing some of my coworkers and associates I will have a hard time recommending the Surefire M500A. Depending on their desire or skill level... Most will require it slaps into place, has a good overall fit and appearance..... Most will not take the time......
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 8:34:23 AM EDT
Gee, I hope all that "fitting" doesn't void the warranty. After reading Dilberts post, something doesn't quite smell right. Must be you have the "product improved" Surefire, heh heh. I can't wait to compare your Surefire to my set-up...
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 8:39:48 AM EDT
[b]"SLAM THEM TOGETHER"[/b] was what I was told.... Lifetime of abuse is what she will receive.....
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 8:41:44 AM EDT
Originally Posted By pickupdan: [b]"SLAM THEM TOGETHER"[/b] was what I was told.... Lifetime of abuse is what she will receive.....
View Quote
Well, should be OK then as long as the unit is "oil bath tolerant" [:D]
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 9:28:54 AM EDT
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 9:29:43 AM EDT
[img]http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid71/p821ef4ba3515708906d295fa5bd6216f/fb93b916.jpg[/img]
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 9:35:39 AM EDT
[b][size=6]LOOK AT THAT CRACK!!![/size=6][/B] Thanks ARfun
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 9:43:00 AM EDT
I was thinking about getting an M500 series light, but what you (and others in the past), have described bums me out. And to think [i]my[/i] concern was that Surefire was too stupid to match the color of the metal parts of the light to an AR barrel or the handguards.[rolleyes]
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 10:34:25 AM EDT
Don't get me wrong... They are a great rig, but be prepared to do a some fitting to make it look right.... [email]oldedantucker@hotmail.com[/email]
Link Posted: 7/25/2003 2:35:02 PM EDT
small gap... doesn't really bother me... [img]http://home.nc.rr.com/blueshockey77/m500a.jpg[/img]
Link Posted: 8/27/2003 1:17:38 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/27/2003 1:20:00 PM EDT by Hammer_of_God]
My 500A was the same when I got it, I had a noticable gap at the rear of the hanguards. Not as big as the one in the pictures though. Just not perfectly flush like you want a $300 add on to be. I did a bit of careful scraping, and carving with the old pocket knife on the two 'tits' that look like they are supposed to seat on the bbl nut. Got the hanguards to where they almost met then took a big roll of duct tape and smacked the rear of the unit a few times to crush fit them when they were mounted on the carbine(since that was apparently what the intention was, plus it made me feel better). No damage to the weaponslight and they fit perfectly, are nice and tight even after being taken on, and off a few times. I will try post pictures at some point. They may even be made to gradually 'wear' in but it would probably take forever even if you carried the rifle all the time for that to happen. I think it really just depends on what 'oclock' you bbl nut is at. A buddies went on flush first time and the 'tits' on his are not mashed at all (some guys have all the luck). A note in the manual about this would have made me feel better when I was wailing away with that roll of duct tape though :) Carbine is a Bushmaster m4A3, with carrying handle still mounted, and Trij reflex. The M500A unit is one of the older one without LEDS :( HoG
Link Posted: 8/27/2003 1:24:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/27/2003 1:35:08 PM EDT by gus]
Believe it or not, I do recall hearing that the correct procedure was to smack them with a rubber mallet to seat them. Probably best done with the light assembly removed. In fact, from what I've read, the mallet takes care of it without any of the trimming being necessary. Sounds crazy, I know, but it's been gone over here before. [url]http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=3&f=20&t=151176&w=searchPop[/url] Edited to add the link - first one I found with search, although I had heard of the mallet method even before that thread.
Link Posted: 8/27/2003 4:08:16 PM EDT
Little bit of a gap on mine as well when I first got them 3 years ago, it's been that way for some time.... I got mine to seat pretty flush after putting the rifle between both hands and giving it a good squeeze, a bit of a "pop" was heard when the thing seated finally. Anyhow, the little gap isn't what causes most people concern when they see my rifle. It's the fact that I was actually able to muster the strength to carve away at that upper handguard unit so I could have an ARMS #38Ext clear the handguard. [img]http://home.bak.rr.com/varmintcong/14.5in/145rdown.jpg[/img]
Link Posted: 8/27/2003 5:07:55 PM EDT
I WECSOG dremeled the tits on mine. Kinda wished I hadnt. Wish I had smacked hell out of them. I find them to be a little loose, probably due to the missing tits.
Link Posted: 8/27/2003 8:57:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/28/2003 4:06:52 AM EDT by new-arguy]
Put a phone book or something similar on top of the top handgaurd. Put the bottom of the handgaurd on something to support it. Smack the phone book with a mallet of some sort. Be firm, but dont go crazy. The handgaurds will seat in nicely and have a nice tight fit. Dont shave off material or try to modify them. Just give them a smack and you will be happy. Ive installed probably more than a dozen of these and thats how it works best.
Link Posted: 8/28/2003 3:28:31 AM EDT
A quick note in the box on how to fit them would of saved a lot of grief... Now that one understands how to intall them... Great.... I would expect for $300 plus dollars, out of the box it would be a bit more refined...
Link Posted: 8/28/2003 10:17:17 AM EDT
Dan, I would be happy to take a mallet to your AR for any further required fitting. My 8lb sledge should just about do it[:D]
Link Posted: 8/28/2003 11:03:12 AM EDT
Originally Posted By uglygun: Little bit of a gap on mine as well when I first got them 3 years ago, it's been that way for some time.... I got mine to seat pretty flush after putting the rifle between both hands and giving it a good squeeze, a bit of a "pop" was heard when the thing seated finally. Anyhow, the little gap isn't what causes most people concern when they see my rifle. It's the fact that I was actually able to muster the strength to carve away at that upper handguard unit so I could have an ARMS #38Ext clear the handguard. [url]http://home.bak.rr.com/varmintcong/14.5in/145rdown.jpg[/url]
View Quote
What is that thing on your mag well?
Link Posted: 8/28/2003 12:43:57 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/28/2003 12:44:26 PM EDT by 444]
As has been mentioned, I got mine and wasn't happy with the fit; I was really disappointed. I called Surefire and to quote the guy exactly; "Did you smack the shit out of them ?" I said no. He assured me it wouldn't hurt anything, so I did. They popped right in. There was still a little gap so I pounded them with a mallet. Nothing was damaged, the fit was perfect.
Link Posted: 8/28/2003 12:50:14 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/28/2003 12:50:55 PM EDT by Redbone]
What is that thing on your mag well?
View Quote
That's a Johnson Redi-Mag.
Link Posted: 8/29/2003 8:53:35 AM EDT
(1) The provided instructions could be better, we will rewrite them as soon as possible. (2) Tech support did not feed you a "line", the hanguards are designed to fit tightly. That fit is accomplished in two ways (1) There is a slight bow (spring-loading) in each hanguard to keep the forward ends pressing out . (2) There are "crush dimples" in the rearward channels that go over the barrel nut. These are the reason you need to smack the hanguard (against the rearward side) with a mallet or your palm (or put the weapon on the floor, lay a phonebook over the handguard and apply pressure with your knee). The dimples will crush under pressure, molding to your weapon. (3) We do not recommend removing any "extra" plastic. But for those of you who have, as long as you did not take off any more than the dimples, there was no negative impact on the hanguard's structural integrity. (4) I run an M500 on a Bushmaster and used the palm of heel approach to install. No problems and works as advertised. (5) We'll get working on that manual, sorry for the confusion.
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