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Posted: 3/19/2002 10:18:37 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/19/2002 10:28:06 AM EDT by NYPatriot]
Ok, here it goes...

About 7 weeks ago, I sent one of my AR lower receivers to a well known and respected gunsmith, who manufacturers and installs single stage match triggers (no names, for now).

The lower was returned to me last week (no problem yet... I knew it would take a while), and when I tried to install the selector switch, it refused to slide into the selector hole in the lower.
Upon closer examination, I noticed that not enough steel had been removed from the tail of the trigger (the part that engages the selector), and that it actually covered about one quarter of the opening.
In effect, the trigger was not properly fitted.

Now I have to take some of the blame here, because I did not send the selector switch along with the lower. I did however, include my phone # and E-mail address in the work order, and I made a note to say that if any problems came up, I could be contacted.
I never was, and I guess the smith just guessed at how much steel to remove.

I then called the smith, and when I explained the problem to him, he said that what I was experiencing was "normal" for an AR, and that all I had to do was remove the hammer, so that the trigger tail would drop enough to allow installation of the switch.
I told him that this procedure was not necessary on any of my other ARs', but he insisted that "this is the way it is on all ARs'."
Phone call ends, and I am a bit perplexed.

I then E-mailed him, because I was sure that I had not properly explained my problem (considering the "answer" I got), and he seemed to understand my detailed written explanation, because he suggested that I send him the lower and the selector switch so that he could properly fit them.

Great! This guy stands behind his work, and is going to make matters right. Off the lower and selector go and I am happy again!

Here is where it gets hinky... I got the lower back today, and all he did was remove the hammer, and install the selector. He did not stone the trigger tail, and as a result, the selector switch is installed, but I can't remove it without having to remove the hammer!

What do you guys think about this situation? Removing the hammer to install or remove the selector is not SOP, right??? I'm not crazy here!
The smith is telling me I am with both his words and his actions.

I also asked him if this step was uniquely necessary for his trigger, and he flat out told me "no, it is necessary for all ARs'"

I know that it may sound like I am nit picking here, but remember two things... I paid almost $200 for the trigger and installation, and this AR is intended to be a SHTF weapon, and not a range queen. If something goes wrong, I want to be able to disassemble and replace parts with a minimum of tools.

Thanks for your help.
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 12:40:23 PM EDT
I've rebuilt a couple of lowers and remember this as being "normal" and is relieved by folowing the proper order of installation. I guess I wouldn't sweat it.
Sounds like this guy took good care of you.
The USMC M16 tech manual is highly recommended and it is useful to know disassembly/assembly. My 2 cents.
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 2:51:57 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 6:09:15 PM EDT
The 'smith probably did not explain himself very well. The USGI parts do not require the procedure that you outlined, but you are no longer using USGI parts -- so the procedure you described may be entirely correct for the type of trigger that was put into your rifle.

My opinion would be that you should NOT have put in a after-market trigger into a SHTF rifle. I would have stayed totally USGI on the parts. Now if the SHTF, you may have to replace multiple parts in the lower if something breaks to return it to USGI spec. Much better, IMHO, would have been to have the trigger/hammer sear engagement areas smoothed out instead of a non-USGI trigger job.
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 6:40:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/19/2002 6:43:45 PM EDT by NYPatriot]
Guys, I want to be clear on one point here.

I specifically asked the smith if this was a unique feature of his trigger, and he said "no, this is the way it is with all AR triggers".

Also, I don't feel that I am "good to go", because the installation of this trigger has altered the disassembly pattern of the weapon. It is not a good thing to have to remove and install the hammer pin in order to do simple maintenance, because eventually you will distort and widen the size of the hole.

This is an expensive hobby. Would you settle for "good enough???"
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 8:00:34 PM EDT
I also want to address the issue of a "match" trigger in a SHTF rifle.

I agree that most of the after market triggers out there are inappropriate for a weapon that might be called upon to defend life and limb.

I did a lot of research on this matter however, and came to the conclusion that this particular trigger is the only single stage trigger that can be counted on to be as reliable as a Mil. spec. trigger, while exhibiting a much crisper, lighter, and consistent pull.

It is robust, made of hardened stainless steel, uses standard weight hammer & trigger springs, and most importantly, it lacks set screws. Every review I have read about this trigger has been extremely positive, and well-respected board members on this site regularly recommend it.

I figure it shouldn't be too hard to guess which trigger I am referring to now!
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 8:05:15 PM EDT
He was 'technically correct' when he said that the procedure applies to all triggers. What he should have said was that it applies to all match triggers if they are installed and adjusted correctly.

On the other hand, I bought what I'm 99.9% sure is the same trigger you bought, installed it myself, and can remove the selector, hammer pins, etc. without tools just like it was the regular milspec trigger.
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 8:15:49 PM EDT
Hoplophile, E-mail incoming. I want to ask you a couple of questions if you don't mind.
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 8:43:31 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/19/2002 8:53:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/19/2002 9:49:38 PM EDT by NYPatriot]
Posted by ILove2Shoot...

I have been putting together a few lowers lately and find if I lock the hammer back into Fire position, the back of the trigger moves out of the way and the selector can then be put into place easily.


Doesn’t seem to matter with this trigger. Hammer forward; hammer back, the problem remains.


You realize just how many times you will have to do this for that to happen...Are you removing it on a daily basis constantly for a few years?


I hear where you are coming from, but my main point is that it should be completely unnecessary to remove the hammer for any reason other than for replacing weak springs or worn parts.

Link Posted: 3/20/2002 5:03:20 AM EDT

I hear where you are coming from, but my main point is that it should be completely unnecessary to remove the hammer for any reason other than for replacing weak springs or worn parts.


Exactly the point. Once you have installed all of your aftermarket trigger parts, why are you going to worry about having to take the hammer out if you have to repair something?


Also, I don't feel that I am "good to go", because the installation of this trigger has altered the disassembly pattern of the weapon. It is not a good thing to have to remove and install the hammer pin in order to do simple maintenance, because eventually you will distort and widen the size of the hole.



simple maintenance is cleaning. You make it sound as though you are removing your internals every time you are cleaning your weapon. Is this the case? If you are only going to remove the internals to reapir something that's broken, you souldn't have to do that very often at all, if ever. It would seem no problem to just remove the hammer at the same time.

If you sent it to somebody to fit the trigger, and the trigger works as advertised, then I do not see the problem. If something breaks in the trigger, will you not have to send it off to the same guy to get it fixed anyway? If you're just talking about using a USGI part as a replacement back-up, then what does it matter how the after-market trigger goes in. When you switch to the USGI part, it will assemble like it should.

I guess I'm confused as to what the problem is. It's a customized rifle now. The reason mil-spec parts are mil-spec is so they interchange. You gave that up when you went custom, and shouldn't expect it to be there. If the trigger works as advertised, then you have what you wanted. If you wanted interchangability, then you should have stuck to USGI parts.

Ross
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 7:20:40 AM EDT
Part of setting up a match trigger is setting minimal trigger/hammer engagement to eliminate trigger creep. USGI hammer/trigger has generous engagement and are notoriously "creepy". With minimal engagement on your match trigger, the safety selector will be "tight", and not remove without removing the hammer first. Removing the hammer allows the trigger to pivot past the match engagement point.

The bottom line is that THE SMITH TOLD YOU THE TRUTH. You can make the trigger/hammer engagement generous (like USGI) but that defeats the purpose of the match trigger. Quit your whining or go back to a crappy USGI trigger pull.
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 10:26:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2002 10:27:43 AM EDT by drjarhead]
I will continue to stand by my original statement that this is "normal". I'm not a gunsmith but I've rebuilt a couple of lowers and if you do not follow the proper order of assembly this is what happens. I did so with a bushmaster and a RRA lower parts kit.

Edited to say: this is all much ado about nothing. Go shoot your rifle!
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 11:14:35 AM EDT
Posted by DnPRK...

Quit your whining or go back to a crappy USGI trigger pull.


And all the while I thought that I was simply asking for advice from those who are more knowledgeable than myself.

Do me a favor DnPRK, "quit" your snide remarks, and please refrain from reading or posting to my threads in the future. They obviously annoy you, and neither one of us wants that, do we?
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 11:31:02 AM EDT
NYP,
Go back and look at this thread! No less than 7 different people have responded but you refuse to acknowledge their collective experience. Instead, you go back to the same "but I can't take the selector out". If you're intent is to increase your post count, then you've been successful.
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 11:46:33 AM EDT
Would the person who has a gun to DnPRK's head please stop forcing him to read and respond to my posts!
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 12:15:18 PM EDT
Go shoot your rifle!!! AAaaaaaaagggghhh!!!!!!!!!
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 6:56:30 PM EDT
Others have already said it, but I'll be a little more verbose. Okay, I'll be awfully damned long winded.

If you take your rifle and compare it to another AR, try pulling on each trigger while the safety selector is in the "safe" position. You'll notice that your match trigger has absolutely no movement whatsoever while the regular trigger has a little bit of movement. The actual amount of movement will depend on the tolerances of the parts involved and can vary widely.

If you look at the safety selector you'll notice that the ends where it contacts the lower receiver are slightly larger in diameter than the middle portion where the trigger contacts the selector. That movement you feel in the regular trigger is because the trigger has enough room for the larger end of the selector to fit past, and that movement is safe because the regular trigger has a vary large contact surface to ensure that the trigger will securely hold the hammer even though the tolerances of the parts used can vary widely.

All that is fine in a regular trigger, but on a match trigger you don't want a sloppy, creepy trigger. You're paying for a nice, crisp trigger and that's what you've got, but in order for that trigger to not have a bunch of take-up or creep it is necessary to reduce the contact surface between the hammer and the trigger. This introduces too problems:

1. The parts used must be very hard because if they wear too much then the trigger might not be able to hold the trigger.

And 2. Since that contact surface is so small, the little bit of movement you feel on a regular trigger could be enough to actually let the weapon fire with the safety on. The trigger must be fitted so tightly to the selector that it absolutely cannot move. This lack of movement is why you can't remove the selector without removing the hammer first, and is absolutely essential to the safe operation of the trigger. You could easily remove some metal from the trigger so that it can allow the wider end portion of the selector past, but you'd be taking a big risk with the safety of the weapon.

If you're still awake you're probably wondering why I can have the same trigger that you do but I can remove the selector without removing the hammer or trigger. I never realized it until tonight but my selector is 'out of spec' in that it is almost the same diameter for its entire length. There is just a barely noticeable ridge between the middle portion of the selector and the larger portion on the end. This means that my trigger can allow enough room for the large end to pass but doesn't have a large gap between it and the middle section. It still catches a little but I can tap it past without removing the trigger.

Basically, you have 3 options:

1. Accept that having a match trigger means you can remove the selector without first removing the hammer.
2. Go back to the regular trigger.
3. Hunt around and find a selector that is 'out of spec' like mine and have the trigger re-fitted to handle this different selector. I don’t even remember where I got this selector so I can't even tell you where to start looking for one. Unless somebody on these forums has one you may find it easiest to have one custom made.
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 7:04:10 PM EDT
I learn something new every time I am on this site.
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 7:29:27 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2002 7:31:41 PM EDT by TREETOP]
Link Posted: 3/20/2002 7:47:12 PM EDT
Hoplophile, I want to thank you for the time and effort that went into your reply.

"Long winded" is not how I would characterize your answer. Informative, articulate, and considerate better describe your post IMHO.

Best regards,
NY Patriot

Link Posted: 3/20/2002 9:29:03 PM EDT
One more... yes, for my match trigger/hammer (JP) the selector has to be installed first. The trigger slipped under it, hammer installed last.

In fact, the top of the trigger had to be dressed lightly to allow the safety to be engaged.

This is normal for a match trigger.
Link Posted: 3/21/2002 8:44:24 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/21/2002 12:15:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By A_Free_Man:
One more... yes, for my match trigger/hammer (JP) the selector has to be installed first. The trigger slipped under it, hammer installed last.

In fact, the top of the trigger had to be dressed lightly to allow the safety to be engaged.

This is normal for a match trigger.


Same here for my JP trigger. I had to file it following JP's instructions in order to engage the safety. And when the safety is engaged the trigger will not move. Normal for a match trigger.
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