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Posted: 2/19/2006 12:20:40 AM EDT
Ok, so I've decided to spend the money and buy a free float hanguard setup. I will be going with the Daniel Defense 9.5 FSP. I have a Bushmaster 16" M4 car length with the bird cage style flash hider. I read the sticky on installing a FF, and I am reasonably sure I can do it. Here are my questions.

1. Would it be reasonably cheaper to take my rifle to a gunsmith to have this perfomed rather than me buying all the tools to do it myself, I figured in the neighborhood of $125 to do it myself, after buying an action block, wrench, punches etc.

2. If I do opt to do it, why does the flash hider have to come off? And how do I take mine off, or is this one permantly attached, Bushmaster website does not say for sure. See pic below, sorry about the poor quality, I took it with my camera phone

3. How hard are these things to install? I have lots of mechanical experience, and am good with tools and my hands, but I have almost no experience taking firearms apart.

4. Who makes the best rail covers? I have read so many differing opinions, I don't know what to get.

http://img81.imageshack.us/img81/4593/flashhider2au.th.jpg

Here is a link to what my rifle looks like
http://www.bushmaster.com/shopping/weapons/bcwa3f16m4.asp

Any help is greatly appreciated!
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:28:10 AM EDT
Are you dead set on getting a one piece? There are great 2 piece FF's out there, MI and YHM are two. That'd solve a lot of your problems. Cheaper too, so you can by more goodies to put on the rails.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:33:11 AM EDT
From what I've read, the one piece design is stronger, and more solid, plus I really like the 9.5 because of the way it extends over the bottom of the front sight. I have considered the two piece, but I just think a one piece would be better.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:36:12 AM EDT
Is this for the range, or do you expect to actually put it through enough that the 2 piece would actually be an issue? The 2 pieces aren't all that weak.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:46:48 AM EDT
I am a big guy. 6'3 285 lbs, and am a little harder on things sometimes because of it. The gun will be used for home defense, and maybe competition later on, but I just want something that is going to hold up, and take abuse if I need it to. Money really isn't a question for me, but reliability, and long term durability are.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:51:42 AM EDT
All I can really answer is the FSB has to come off so that's what you have to take the FH off. I've never had one installed, after researching myself, and for my needs, I decided to go the 2 piece route. Removing the FH will require dremeling if it's permanently installed. If the barrel is actually a 14.5 with the FH making it 16, then it more than likely is.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:52:39 AM EDT
How do the rails for a two piece attach to each other?
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 12:54:26 AM EDT
Bolts. My MI attaches with 8 IIRC.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 1:03:32 AM EDT
Well, I just measured, it is a 16" barrel w/o counting the flash hider. I was looking at the MI#17-X, which looks pretty similar to the DD. I might have to reconsider my options.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 7:16:16 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 9:11:28 AM EDT

Originally Posted By RustyTX:
The 17X are handguards (not ff). The 20X is the ff model.

dsgarms.com/images/products/MCTAR-20Xwmk.jpg


Originally Posted By LIVIDDEVIL:
Well, I just measured, it is a 16" barrel w/o counting the flash hider. I was looking at the MI#17-X, which looks pretty similar to the DD. I might have to reconsider my options.




Yeah, I know I was just saying they look a lot like the dd free float setup, I didn't mean to imply that they were the same.
Link Posted: 2/19/2006 9:29:10 AM EDT
go with the DD and never look back. you will be happy you did. removing the flash hider is a joke as well as removing the fsb. flash hider is right hand thread and fsb is pinned in two places and gas tube in one place. that being said ADCO can do it for you including shipping for less than $125. of course then you wont have the tools around that you are going to need to build your next AR i say go for it yourself
Link Posted: 2/20/2006 3:19:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By JL7:
go with the DD and never look back. you will be happy you did. removing the flash hider is a joke as well as removing the fsb. flash hider is right hand thread and fsb is pinned in two places and gas tube in one place. that being said ADCO can do it for you including shipping for less than $125. of course then you wont have the tools around that you are going to need to build your next AR hr


Well, I went ahead and ordered the dd free float setup. I do plan on building another one someday, so I bought the necessary tools also. Thanks for all the advice gentlemen!
Link Posted: 2/20/2006 3:24:19 PM EDT
You wont regret it, its very easy I just hope you got a very good strap wrench
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