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Posted: 2/14/2006 4:55:35 PM EDT
I need to pick up a few spare parts for a class I'm taking in May. I know I at least want a complete spare bolt (for quick and easy fixing of any bolt related problem) but I just wanted to make sure I shouldn't get a complete spare BCG instead.

Thanks in advance.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 4:56:43 PM EDT
Are you afraid you AR is going to break?

It's not made of glass you know...
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:00:43 PM EDT
Well, from my limited experience I would say get the BCG. That being said all of my spare parts have mysteriously turned into complete rifles - go figure.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:12:50 PM EDT
Yeah, I saw your thread earlier AR15_Fanatic. The rifle I'm bringing has a lot less round through it than your does.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:19:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By chris157c:
Are you afraid you AR is going to break? It's not made of glass you know...

No, really? I thought it was made of Waterford crystal.

What I'm afraid of is going to a class that's 6.5 hours away, costing me beaucoup money and having my rifle fail to work because of a stupiud 50 cent part. BTW, did I mention that I'll be bringing Mr. Murphy along for the ride? If I don't bring spare parts, I will have a problem. If I do, I probably won't. I'm probably going to bring my other AR but it's got a 20" bbl which I really don't need.

With spare bolt, I can swap it in if anything bolt related goes wrong and fix the broken bolt when I get home.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:37:37 PM EDT
I have never, ever heard of a broken carrier. Get a couple of screws and a key if you are paranoid.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:40:08 PM EDT
Between the two, my vote is bolt www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=3&f=118&t=269124

Bring a spare parts kit as well - small springs, etc. just to be safe.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:40:40 PM EDT
I have a spare bolt in the FVG or MIAD handgrip and a complete bolt/carrier assembly in my range kit. If something goes south during a comp or carbine class or whatever, I want to be up and running as quickly as possible. To date, I've needed neither, but I'm guessing I'm due pretty soon.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:43:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DK-Prof:
Between the two, my vote is bolt www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=3&f=118&t=269124

Yeah I know, my timing or ar15fanatic's timing is perfect. I read that before I made my post.

Bring a spare parts kit as well - small springs, etc. just to be safe.
Done. I got that last week. Springs, gas rings, firing pin, cam pin, etc.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:44:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DevL:
I have never, ever heard of a broken carrier. Get a couple of screws and a key if you are paranoid.

Nah, I'm not that paranoid. I couldn't think of a reason why I would need a carrier but I just wanted to make sure.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:51:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Matt_B:
Yeah, I saw your thread earlier AR15_Fanatic. The rifle I'm bringing has a lot less round through it than your does.



Are you implying that mine’s been around the block?

The reason I say get a BCG is if the bolt fails what’s to say the failure is limited to the bolt? If say the extractor fails, great just swap in the new bolt - however - if you have some catastrophic failure with the bolt like I did, do you really think your going to trust any part of that BCG until you’ve had time to check it out?

Just be sure to test the BCG in your rifle before going to the class. And like I said, spare parts have a nasty habit of turning into new rifles - why not have a BCG lying around to convince yourself you need another?
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:54:45 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15_Fanatic:
Well, from my limited experience I would say get the BCG. That being said all of my spare parts have mysteriously turned into complete rifles - go figure.



funny, I bought some spare parts a few months ago which have recently acquired more "spare parts". I don't know what happened, but the rifles seem to be completing themselves while I'm away...

I guess the answer is to just give in to the madening cycle; just keep buying parts for rifles, then they become rifles of their own- for which you definately need spare parts.. argghh

--VT
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 6:58:32 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 7:08:08 PM EDT
Matt B... Your smart to plan ahead

Stickman is correct, have a complete BCG.

When My lugging lock busted on day 2 of a 3 day class. I just swapped out with a spare Colt BCG I had and finished day 3 (800 rds) with out a hiccup.

The only way I knew my Lug busted of was at the end of day 2, I had the weapon apart to do a quick wipe-down/inspection and relube and that's when I noticed the lug missing. I probably could have finished the class with it, but that's what the spare BCG was for,

My class was in Indiana which was about 5 hrs away from my spare parts..... really didn't feel like running home quick.

Smart shooters plan ahead and get to watch the Bucket-heads who don't.........
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 4:05:13 AM EDT
Well if you really want to be safe, a spare carbine, setup just like your primary is the way to go

Other wise I think Mongo has the best approach.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 4:24:43 AM EDT

Originally Posted By cgv69:
Well if you really want to be safe, a spare carbine, setup just like your primary is the way to go

As I stated in a previous post, I'm bringing my 20" AR but I'm not buying another carbine. My main carbine has an Aimpoint M3 on it so I'm going to take the Aimpoint M2 off of my 9mm AR and zeroing it for 20" AR. I use a tape switch to activate my weapon light (Surefire M952) so I'll set up the extra Tango Down switch panel I have on it.

Thanks for the advice. I'll just buy the entire BCG and be done with it. I'm not worried about a BCG mysteriously morphing into a complete rifle.

Link Posted: 2/15/2006 4:35:16 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/15/2006 4:35:50 AM EDT by chris157c]

Originally Posted By cgv69:
Well if you really want to be safe, a spare carbine, setup just like your primary is the way to go



+1. If your REALLY worried your weapon might break, you know it's going to be the 1 part you didn't buy/bring with you.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 5:14:33 AM EDT

Originally Posted By cgv69:
Well if you really want to be safe, a spare carbine, setup just like your primary is the way to go

Other wise I think Mongo has the best approach.




+1


Link Posted: 2/15/2006 6:24:20 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/15/2006 6:25:59 AM EDT by Bartholomew_Roberts]
From a practical standpoint, the only thing I have ever seen fail on a BCG is the gas key (key clogged, screws come loose/improperly staked, screws break). If you have enough rounds through the BCG to trust it; but not so many (over 10k) to put some serious wear on it, then I think you would be fine for 99.9% of problems with a spare bolt. However I've seen some freaky failures (popped primer crushed into gas key) that would have been fixed a lot easier with a spare BCG and nobody likes downtime when you are paying to shoot.

The nice thing about a spare bolt is it is small enough to keep with the rifle and takes care of most of the common AR ailments (extractor, ejector, broken bolt, gas rings). Having said that I have a spare BCG and several spare bolts with my cleaning gear, not because I think I will need them but just because I ended up with extra parts here and there and figure it is better to have them handy then have them at home.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 6:25:58 AM EDT
I have a spare B/BC Group for hunting out of state.
I also bring two ARs so I am good both ways.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 6:40:38 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mongo001:
I have a spare bolt in the FVG or MIAD handgrip and a complete bolt/carrier assembly in my range kit. If something goes south during a comp or carbine class or whatever, I want to be up and running as quickly as possible. To date, I've needed neither, but I'm guessing I'm due pretty soon.


+1

I have three spare BCG, two with MPI bolts the other one is standard.

Worst case, I also bring my other carbine and 20" rifle.

Good luck.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 6:44:01 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Stickman:


The nice thing about a spare BCG is that you drop it in and go, there is almost zero down time. A bolt is great, but a extra BCG has the magical ability to transform itself into another AR15.



I keep having the same problem! Is there a doctor in the house?
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 6:59:14 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Stickman:

Originally Posted By Matt_B:

Originally Posted By DevL:
I have never, ever heard of a broken carrier. Get a couple of screws and a key if you are paranoid.

Nah, I'm not that paranoid. I couldn't think of a reason why I would need a carrier but I just wanted to make sure.



The nice thing about a spare BCG is that you drop it in and go, there is almost zero down time. A bolt is great, but a extra BCG has the magical ability to transform itself into another AR15.



......and because you can drop in a new bolt/carrier if yours goes down, you won't be "that asshat who's rifle keeps going down and delays our big $$$ class!" Last time I went to Blackwater we had 2 out of 14 guys who were "that guy". At one point I thought that they were going to by lynched!

Tom
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 7:01:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Stickman:
The nice thing about a spare BCG is that you drop it in and go, there is almost zero down time. A bolt is great, but a extra BCG has the magical ability to transform itself into another AR15.



I'm going to 2nd Sickman's suggestion. Dropping in a new BCG takes a few seconds.

If you need to replace the bolt then you've got to pull your existing BCG, field strip it, reassemble with the new bolt then drop it it. Much faster just to drop in a fully assembled BCG.

Oh and as to Bolt carriers breaking. I've seen the screws that hold the gas key on go bad, a new BCG is the fastest way to get that carbine up & running again (worry about replacing & restaking screws in the broken gas key AFTER the class not during it).

Of course a 2nd rifle is even better if you have the funds....
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 7:03:28 AM EDT
If possible I would take a spare rifle instead of parts. For the cost of the class better to have a complete rifle ready to go for those unplanned errors.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 9:18:54 AM EDT
Ok, here's a summarization of the thread:

1) I'm taking my 16" midlength and my 20" AR. Those are the only 5.56mm ARs I have.

2) I'm not going to buy another carbine just for the class. I've got the money to do it but, beyond getting it for the class, I don't have a need for it. I have other things I would rather spend my money on.

3) I'm going to get a complete BCG. That sounds like the simplest and quickest way to deal with a semi-catastrophic failure related to the BCG.

4) I'm also bringing a DPMS Field Repair kit which has gas rings, a firing pin, cam pin and other little springs and detents. If the worst happens, I can just grab my other rifle then swap in the other BCG and go back to my carbine. Later than night, if I have time, I can always try to repair the faulty BCG with some of the spare parts I have.

I've got a plan and should have all bases covered. Thanks for all the advice.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 9:29:39 AM EDT
get both - which will net 1 carrier and 2 bolts. I currently have 2 spare bolts and one carrier in my will never part with pile of spare parts.....

When I use on in a build I replace it...
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