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Posted: 7/30/2003 10:34:31 PM EDT
I sold my first AK, a SAM-7. I miss it because of its reliabiliy, but I did so in order to standardize on the AR-15 system.

Now I am questioning that move.

I am curious to know from forum members:

1. How many rounds have been put through any one of your AR-15's consecutively without a hitch. I.e. Without cleaning!

2. How many rounds have been put through any one of your AR-15's in the course of its life without having to replace a part or do any sort of repair? This question refers to total rouds fired from the day you bought it to the current moment.
Link Posted: 7/30/2003 10:40:02 PM EDT
Colt AR15A2 20inchs barrel. 2000 rounds. NP of ANY kind, no FTF or FTE flawless. But then i clean it everytime i go shooting. HUNTER.
Link Posted: 7/30/2003 10:43:14 PM EDT
I have 1500 or 2000 rounds at least on some of them, without parts breaking. I know thats not a lot, but I have/have had 6 or 7 uppers in the 13 months Ive had ARs. I have gone 1k or more without cleaning, and no trouble, except some caused by my RRA trigger not working with a Bushmaster upper.
Link Posted: 7/30/2003 11:29:25 PM EDT
I ran about 1250 rounds through my bushy one afternoon without even adding a drop of clp. I dont know how far it would have went. I was scared of Ar's for a long while because of the mythical reliability issues one always hears of. Now that I 've had one for a good bit, I would put it up against any gun in the safe. The only problems I ever had came from a cheap brand of ammo that starts with a "W" and ends with a "F". But I don't want to get that controversy rekindled
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 2:16:38 AM EDT
A SAM-7 is a good rifle to give up; I have an SLR-100H and love it. Hope you don’t feel too bad about it. I’ve got a couple different ARs, one of the Bushmasters has about 7400 rounds through it so far and it’s doing fine. In one afternoon a buddy and I split a case of UMC, I’d figure my AR for about half of that. Either way, 500 rounds plus or minus for one AR or the other. I’m somewhat fanatical about cleaning my weapons, that might have something to do with it too.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 2:24:44 AM EDT
When I got my RRA M-forgery I had the same question. So I went out and shot it in every crappy dust storm we had and left it outside when the dust storms got really bad (I farm with nobody around for miles, so I had plenty of opportinities to do this). I even took it on the tractor and combine with me a lot of the time (everything gets coated in fine, powdery dust in these things). Over the course of three weeks of this I put about 1100 rounds through it and didn't clean or lube it once. The thing never malfunctioned or even came close. I finally cleaned it (it was hard to resist during my test because I hate to neglect things like that) and it looked good as new. I now have about 5000 rounds through it without a single problem - my AK hasn't been this reliable.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 2:55:49 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Detlef: 1. How many rounds have been put through any one of your AR-15's consecutively without a hitch. I.e. Without cleaning!
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Troy gave us a damn good answer to that question back in March 2001...
My BM (Bushmaster) M4 is up to 7000 rounds with no cleaning, just a shot of CLP before heading out to the range.
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[url]groups.msn.com/TheMarylandAR15ShootersSite/ar15reliability.msnw[/url]
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 4:02:49 AM EDT
I have 22,500 rounds through my Colt AR-15 Sporter II. The barrel was replaced at 18,000 rounds due to erosion at the throut resulting in a decrease in accuracy beginning at 16,000 rounds. The firing pin was replaced at 9,100 rounds due to breakage. The hammer, springs and bolt assembly were replaced at the time the barrel was replaced due to wear, however, these parts are still survicable and kept as spares.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 7:04:31 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/31/2003 7:06:56 AM EDT by Yojimbo]
See link to my reliability test below. It was 1050 rounds of various ammo with no cleaning. The way it was running I'm sure it could have gone for another 1000 or more easily. [url=http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=3&f=12&t=164401] CMMG M4 reliabilty test.[/url]
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 8:27:04 AM EDT
I went on 3 ocasions 1500 rounds of wolf lubed it before I shot it,its a pre ban bushy carbine15000+ rounds in the last 12 years ive had it,I have a new barrel so 5000 belong to that, fire control parts,barrel extension and same bolt and carrier,and its still going good,8000 through my post ban bushy M4 and no problems and where I use wolf for blasting ammo alon with south african I changed extractors to les baer chrome plated steel ones,they work great no matter how dirty the bolt gets and it gets dirty with wolf,soon when I have a little more money Im going to get 3 cases of wolf lube once and see how long it will go,Im sure it will go more than 1500 rds.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 8:59:37 AM EDT
I can't bear to torture test my ARs. But I'm glad to see some of you have. Great info. I'm confident though that my ARs wouldn't let me down.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 9:59:59 AM EDT
At the local Class 3 rental range, they have two Colt M-16s. IIRC, they claim that one has just over 8000 thru it, and the other has about 12,500. No cleaning. YMMV... I tend to believe this guy,tho. His guns are FILTHY!
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 10:12:48 AM EDT
Clean 'em if you want but it isn't necessary every outing. The AR problems are far more a myth than fact. I have never had a malfunction in any of mine. I am sure over time I will since it is a mechanical man made tool. Any gun will malf at some time or another. Hopefully not when your life is on the line. Plus (and I have nothing against AK's)I have seen plenty of Afghanis on tape during OP EF constantly recycling their weapons due to failures. This could be ammo, old parts, or cleaning but the fact is all weapons can fail under many combinations of extreme conditions. You'll be happy with your AR('s)!!
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 12:33:15 PM EDT
Wow! I am very impressed. Like so many others, I too am afraid to treat any of my guns too rough. Looks like I can slack off on the maintenance a little bit. It seems that ammunition has a lot to do with it. Even still, if I were stuck in the middle of the city while in a riot or something I would still like an AK. Now I will certainly give my AR-15s the benefit of a doubt. Too bad high quality .223 ammo is not cheaper, but at least it can be reloaded. Thanks for the replies everyone.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 1:55:57 PM EDT
One more comment. Bought my first AR approx. 1 month ago. Unlike a lot of friends I don't go to the range and play Rambo. Mine's a field gun. And the field I play in is desert country with very fine, blowing all-the-time dirt/grit and other assorted crap. I'm now half way through my second case of Wolf without any problems whatsoever. None. Nada. Zilch. Haven't cleaned anything as yet and the carrier/bolt still has plenty of lube (Militec-1) and the barrel/chamber, while definitely dirty, are clean enough to keep right on chugging. I can't say how many jacks, chucks, ground squirrels, crows, etc. I killed but I'm generally shooting out to 200-300 yards so even if dirty the gun is still plenty accurate for small targets. I figure to run the gun uncleaned until I'm through the second case. Then I'll give her a thorough cleaning and start all over again. Will probably perform a good, basic cleaning every 1000 or so rounds after that as regular maintenance.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 3:14:30 PM EDT
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 6:29:25 PM EDT
Lots of good info here. I have 1,500 and 2,000+ rounds through my two AR's, but I clean them, so they won't be good data points for you. I agree with the general comment that AR unreliability myths abound. Keep two things in mind: 1) AR's like to be shot a lot to get broken-in. They are made to tight tolerances and take 500+ rounds to become highly reliable. Troubles in the first 3 or five mags often disappear after 10. Short-stroking FTF and bolts not catching on the last round are common in new guns. Just keep shooting! 2) Don't over lube! The upper needs no lube at all. Lightly lube the bolt and that's it. Over-lubing only draws crud like a magnet. JMHO... C_M
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 10:01:02 PM EDT
I regularly go 500 rounds or more with just a little lube. My son has gone over 1000 with just a few drops of oil. All this with no problems.
Link Posted: 7/31/2003 10:55:22 PM EDT
I read a well done review on the AR-15 rifle where they put 10,000 round through the gun in two days with no malfunctions and no broken parts. Putting that many rounds through a gun that fast is allot harder than normal wear.
Link Posted: 8/1/2003 4:02:33 AM EDT
Originally Posted By whywork40: I read a well done review on the AR-15 rifle where they put 10,000 round through the gun in two days with no malfunctions and no broken parts. Putting that many rounds through a gun that fast is allot harder than normal wear.
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Isn't that the article where they were shooting at a large log of some sort? If it is, IIRC, didn't they "shoot out" the barrel after 10,000 rounds? Again, IIRC, the barrel had severe throat-erosion; they switched to heavier bullets (77gr? from 55gr), and the accuracy returned, due to different bullet profile contacting rifling differently. Shooting Times?
Link Posted: 8/1/2003 4:53:08 AM EDT
The link to the article on the Colt HBAR endurance test... [url]www.galleryofguns.com/ShootingTimes/Articles/DisplayArticles.asp?ID=1205[/url]
Link Posted: 8/1/2003 5:32:53 AM EDT
One of my instructors at Blackwater, John Russel, uses Miltech as a lube. He was using his issue Colt M4 (full auto). By his count, he had 7,000 rounds through it without cleaning. I know he fired at least our entire course (almost a 3,000 round course) without a failure or a malf. He shot as much as we did. His gun was FILTHY. But it ran like a top. The only thing he did not do was the KDR. The KDR was complete sand, which started to gum up the works. The older weapons in the class started to choke within 50 rounds on the KDR, as did anyone who lubed their weapon too much. I have a feeling that John's weapon would have started malfing in the sand as dirty as it was, but I don't know for sure. Mine ran, but it ran sluggishly. Using Tetra instead of CLP, however, helped the gun tremendously. The gun ran 350 rounds and got a bit sluggish after 200 of them, but it kept running. My 16" Bushy Carbine got between 500 and 700 rounds through it each day, with a good cleaning that night. Mine only jammed once and that was because of a mag with busted feed lips. I used Tetra lube through most of the class, and it worked like a charm. Others in my class did not clean their weapons every night. I know of one Bushmaster (owned by a former Williamsburg SWAT guy and lubed with Miltech) that ran through 4 of the 5 days without cleaning. He touched up the gun with some lube a couple of times and the thing kept running. He experienced a couple of dud rounds, but no lube related jams. My experience shows that when lubed properly with the right type of lube, the AR will run for tons more rounds than you will ever need to fire in a serious situation. My Bushy has a little bit of Tetra grease in the right spots and I would take it into a firefight with no hesitation at all. The AR is far more durable than some give it credit for. It does not LIKE running with crud in the action, but my experience is that it WILL run reliably for many more rounds than you will ever fire in a real fight. To be honest with you, no matter how awful and dirty my Bushy has gotten, it has only jammed because of mag problems and dud rounds. I have never had the weapon itself fail me in any way.
Link Posted: 8/1/2003 4:54:36 PM EDT
BUSHMASTERS or even ARMALITE,RRA,COLT should shoot over 1000 PLUS rounds without a single Hic up at the very WORST! Ive shot my BUSHMASTER SHORTY over 1000rds without a single Hic Up!!! Ive shot several Brands of AMMO Santa Barbra SS109 Lake City M855 Lake City/Federal XM193 55gr.FMJ Winchester M855 Winchester Q3131 M193 55gr.FMJ Winchester/IMI Q3131A M193 55gr. FMJ S.A. 55gr Ball PMP 55gr FMJ PMC 55gr. FMJ PMC M193 Sellier&Bellot M193 FAKE Federal A.E. 55gr.FMJ Remington UMC 55gr.FMJ IMI M855 Lake City M856 Tracers Wolf 55gr FMJ Sellier&Bellot SS109 Federal 69gr.BTHP Winchester White Box 45gr.HP RELOADED 40gr. Ballistic Tips Bushmaster isnt picky! I would never pick a AK type rifle over a AR15/M16! Try shooting 100/200 yard groups with AK47/74?
Link Posted: 8/1/2003 5:09:36 PM EDT
750 rds. So little because i just got it.
Link Posted: 8/1/2003 6:20:41 PM EDT
I have put several hundred rounds through my AR at one time. The only one of my ARs that I dont clean after every outing to the range is my SGW 9MM. After close to 3000 rounds through it, I broke down and cleaned it. I had been using a combination of NATO rounds, US mil rounds, hollow points being Speer-WW-Federal, and my cheap lead bullet reloads. I was trying to see if the upper would malfunction on any particular ammo. After 3000 rounds, the barrel cleaned up nicely, well except the crown of the barrel. Since it has a permanent attached 4 1/2" FH, I had a heck of a time trying to get the lead slag off of the crown of the muzzle. I didn't even notice it as the lead slag was about the same color of the rest of the barrel. I had to take a skinny screwdriver and brass hammer to carefully knock it loose. I had to replace the extractor spring as it was tired and the rubber insert was shot. Then I looked on the Bushmaster site and saw that if you overheated your rifle, you could damage the fire control parts! One being the the hammer pin. I never knew this! I think semi auto this would be very hard to do.
Link Posted: 8/2/2003 2:32:29 AM EDT
During certain train ups in our units, each individual will fire a full case (1680 rds) or more per day out of their issued M4A1. Majority is controlled pairs and some full auto work. Guns hardly ever miss a beat. Of course, guns get a quick wipe down at the end of training each day/night and a complete cleaning before getting turned back into the arms room. De Oppresso Liber
Link Posted: 8/8/2003 5:24:36 PM EDT
I have been shooting AR's for 20 years, and I used M-16's for 8 of those also. The only malfs I've had (outside of blanks) were the result of bad magazines or Wolf ammo in my carbine. Wolf works fine in my 20 incher, btw. Not as much ammo is Diver:) but a lot. I've had an M-16A2 submerged in brackish silty water in the Canal Zone and it worked fine immediately after. I've dumped ten mags F/A through an M16A1 as fast as I could reload and the rifle still let me shoot expert later that month. They are good rifles, and reliable. Tim
Link Posted: 8/8/2003 6:31:24 PM EDT
Fact of the matter is, loooong ago the myth began about AR15/M16 reliabilty. Time and time again those myths are proven incorrect. YET people still believe them and will continue to do so until they see for themselves. This family of weapons are great by any standard.
Link Posted: 9/5/2003 11:40:08 PM EDT
I've owned a lot of guns, 1894's M70's Rem 740's Rem 700's rem 742's, P14enfields, M1A's, M1Carbines, SKS's, Ak's, FN Fal's, HK-91's. [b]THE AR-15/M-16 is the best BY A LONG SHOT!!!!!!! esspecially given the host of truly innovative products designed to make it even better.[b]
Link Posted: 9/6/2003 1:01:42 AM EDT
My Bushmaster chrome lined upper has been at 1000+ rounds without cleaning and kept on shooting. It has NEVER had a malfunction.
Link Posted: 9/6/2003 5:59:41 AM EDT
Mines relativly new... it has 1000 rounds through it so far, without one malfunction. I do keep it clean though, but I keep my SAR clean too and it has had mechanical errors. Both are very reliable weapons though, and if I had to choose one, I would take the AR.
Link Posted: 9/7/2003 1:32:48 AM EDT
Originally Posted By DarkStar: [url]www.galleryofguns.com/ShootingTimes/Articles/DisplayArticles.asp?ID=1205[/url]
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Hmm, a post ban HBAR. I wonder if it was chrome lined? If it was unchromed that would explain the barrel burning out so early. The spec calls for 6,000 rounds down range. Kokalis did a 6,000 round "milspec" test on an A2 waaaay back in '85. By using the amount of throat erosion caused by that 6,000 rounds he estimated the service life of the barrel to be near 30,000 rounds.
Link Posted: 9/7/2003 4:26:31 AM EDT
On a cheap AK rifle, it also has a hard chromed barrel, they have reported 20 to 30.000rds,before going bad, now the high quality AR's, should be just as good, if not better. I currently have a new Bushy A2 shorty, I ran 1060rds without cleaning, spent the week out at the ranch doing this, my only regret is not having more ammo on hand, didnt exsperience any problems during my week of shooting. TG
Link Posted: 9/7/2003 5:14:22 AM EDT
John_Wayne777 is right. AR-15 rifles are extremely reliable. However, they ARE mag sensitive (compare to AK). This is its major drawback. This is about its design which we can't do much about it. The only thing we can do is to use quality mags, period. Any deform in the mags, which often happened in the battle field under very harsh evironment, will cause malfunction of your AR. As a perspective of a battle rifle, AK handles this problem better than an AR. However for LE and civilians, this is not a problem cause they usually babysit their weapons. The AR's problem is not on the upper but the lower. Therefore, how often you clean the upper doesn't make big difference. Use the good mag does. Once again, before you expect the reliability an AR can offer, make sure you use quality mags.
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