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Posted: 12/6/2002 6:47:45 AM EDT
My folks asked me what I wanted for X-Mas and told me to find something that they could spend $200 on. My idea was a Les Baer NM bolt and carrier assembly, completely chromed-out. The benefits are supposed to be decreased wear and improved cycling over a standard carrier.

Do I stand to realize any improvements in accuracy or function combined with a standard Bushmaster 16" shorty, or this bolt just too "turbo" for my rifle?
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 8:11:30 AM EDT
When one of the locking lugs broke off my stock bolt, I replaced the entire assembly with the chromed one.

It functions identically, but it's easier to keep clean. Will you notice any difference? No.

All of my uppers now have one.
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 8:20:00 AM EDT
I don't want to be rude, but surely you can come up with a better way to spend $200.

How about ammo?

New muzzle break?

Free loating barrel.

Match trigger.

Lighted barrel.
I comn, a chrome bolt carrier?
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 8:35:25 AM EDT
I agree with MillerSHO.

Dave
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 8:43:49 AM EDT
That's exactly the kind of input I was looking for. I already had a muzzle brake put on by KKF, and my wife is giving me a Trijicon TA50R-4 scope to put on it. The trigger and barrel suggestions are good.

Many thanks!
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 8:46:23 AM EDT
And one can never have enough ammo!
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 8:52:09 AM EDT
According to Glenn Zediker, the best improvements for accuracy consist of a free float tube, a good trigger, and better sights.

You can get a free float tube for well under $200, so that leaves something left over towards a two-stage trigger.
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 10:59:04 AM EDT
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 11:20:01 AM EDT
The military ABANDONED chrome bolts and carriers, because over time bits of hard chrome wear off, and wear out the aluminum upper. Tell your falks to get you something else. If nothing else, the Les Baer stuff is grossly overpriced---or do you want to pay for his full page ads in the gun mags.
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 2:21:40 PM EDT
If you bolt/bolt carrier is not broken or anything, why replace it? I would get more ammo personally.
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 4:36:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Steve-in-VA:
Thank GOD! You're finally gonna spend money on something other than gay porn. I'm proud of you my man.



What can I say, Steve. I guess I've always been a fan of the movies you starred in while in college. Who can forget that performance in your signature film: "Men-in-Back!"
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 5:37:11 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 5:48:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Clay-More:

Originally Posted By Steve-in-VA:
Thank GOD! You're finally gonna spend money on something other than gay porn. I'm proud of you my man.



What can I say, Steve. I guess I've always been a fan of the movies you starred in while in college. Who can forget that performance in your signature film: "Men-in-Back!"



And don't forget that classic war movie "Shaving Ryan's Privates"!
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 10:58:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By shamayim:
The military ABANDONED chrome bolts and carriers, because over time bits of hard chrome wear off, and wear out the aluminum upper.



I call 100% BS on this. This is a lie hard chrome reduces wear on the upper reciever. ANyone who tells you different is lying. Noone knows why the military does not allow overseas deployment of chromed carriers. It could be because they are old for all we know. Or because they all allowed the bolt cam pin to be inserted on the wrong side we dont know.
Link Posted: 12/6/2002 10:59:21 PM EDT
Oh and get a RRA 2 stage trigger or an Accuracy Speaks single stage trigger not the chromed bolt and carrier.
Link Posted: 12/7/2002 4:33:57 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/7/2002 4:37:11 AM EDT by shamayim]

Originally Posted By DevL:

Originally Posted By shamayim:
The military ABANDONED chrome bolts and carriers, because over time bits of hard chrome wear off, and wear out the aluminum upper.



I call 100% BS on this. This is a lie hard chrome reduces wear on the upper reciever. ANyone who tells you different is lying. Noone knows why the military does not allow overseas deployment of chromed carriers. It could be because they are old for all we know. Or because they all allowed the bolt cam pin to be inserted on the wrong side we dont know.



Tell you what sport, e mail me your full name and address and I'll send you the chromed bolt carrier key in my parts box with half the chrome worn off of it. Now where do you think that chrome plating went? Up the chimney? Or into the inner surfaces of the upper?

Oh by the way, I don't mind being told I'm in error, by someone who knows what they're talking about---but I hate like hell being told I'm a liar, especially by someone who doesn't even have the guts to put his name on his info sheet. I thought they taught better manners than that in Texas.
Link Posted: 12/13/2002 7:28:57 PM EDT
Les Baers NM carriers are oversized from GI standards and are hard chromed. Hard chrome doesnt wear off because it IS harder than anything in an AR. They have much less side to side play . They do work and thats why HE has the patent. Guess soebody better tell Delta in Afghanistan they aren't allowed to have those hard chromes carriers in their Les Baer M-4's....RIGHT !
They do clean up real easy as well.
The other guys suggestions are correct, you will gain more accuracy for the $$$ with a free float tube and a trigger job. Maybee a Titanium Nitride Firing pin from Quality Machining.....they make a difference also.
Link Posted: 12/13/2002 8:25:04 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/14/2002 5:53:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By shamayim:

Originally Posted By DevL:

Originally Posted By shamayim:
The military ABANDONED chrome bolts and carriers, because over time bits of hard chrome wear off, and wear out the aluminum upper.



I call 100% BS on this. This is a lie hard chrome reduces wear on the upper reciever. ANyone who tells you different is lying. Noone knows why the military does not allow overseas deployment of chromed carriers. It could be because they are old for all we know. Or because they all allowed the bolt cam pin to be inserted on the wrong side we dont know.



Tell you what sport, e mail me your full name and address and I'll send you the chromed bolt carrier key in my parts box with half the chrome worn off of it. Now where do you think that chrome plating went? Up the chimney? Or into the inner surfaces of the upper?

Oh by the way, I don't mind being told I'm in error, by someone who knows what they're talking about---but I hate like hell being told I'm a liar, especially by someone who doesn't even have the guts to put his name on his info sheet. I thought they taught better manners than that in Texas.




I have to agree with shamayim on this one with a little clarification. I was in the Army as a both an 11b and 95b, was a small arms instructor and had access to all the TM\PM material for the M-16a1 while I was in. The chrome is much harder than the upper receiver and although it wouldn't cause excessive wear because of the natural lubricity ofthe chrome, it did tend to flake off and get caught in the inner workings of the bolt carrier. It could also make it's way into the chamber and cause a jam or worse.

Devl,I have no idea how the bolt cam pin could get put in wrong as the bolt is machined to accept it from the correct direction only. Did you mean the firing pin retaining pin? That's a one way pin as well.
Link Posted: 12/14/2002 2:19:23 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/16/2002 7:39:24 AM EDT
Hard chrome does not "flake" or "chip" if it does those things then it was not hard chromed but simply chrome plated. I have two HARD chromed firearms and they have zero wear removing the finish. Also if the finish is worn away then the phosphate finish would be gone WAY WAY before the hard chrome finish. IMO you need to have a standard carrier and bolt hard chromed professionaly. My name is

Devron Limerick
127 April Point North
Montgomery TX 77356

I await the delivery of your key. Hard chrome is not the reason you have wear on your key. If someone put a crap ass chroming on the carrier and its not hard chromed then the finish was not at fault. Again HARD chrome does not chip or flake. That is impossible as the chrome is bonded to the metal and the only way you can remove it is by removing the metal its attached to. You can bend a hard chromed steel bar and it will not chip. If military carrier have chrome that chip then they aint hard chromed and if that is true we now know why they are not allowed in deployable weapons. The contractor for the parts commited fraud and said they hard chromed when they did not.
Link Posted: 12/17/2002 12:02:34 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/17/2002 12:05:25 AM EDT by Werew]
Hard chrome is applied by electroplating. Any hard chrome plating can be removed by reverse electroplating. This goes for any other type of plating as well. If you are wondering... yes... the task of reverse electroplating removal of hard chrome would be an EXTREME BITCH!

I agree that a "true" hard chrome plating cannot and would not be removed by usage on a bolt carrier assembly in an AR-15. A regular chrome plate shouldn't flake off either, as long as the firearm is maintained properly. On a Rockwell Hardness scale, "true" hard chrome will read 70-74. That is almost 3 times the hardness of most 1911 slide and frames!!!

A myth about "true" hard chrome.... most people will state that their firearm is "hard chromed", when in fact it isn't(from a scientific & mechanical standpoint). A "true" hard chrome plating is actually not visually attractive at all, as it will have "splotches" of yellow here and there. These "splotches" cannot be polished out to match the brilliant bluish tint of regular chrome that most familiarize themselves with being "chrome or hard chrome".

I also agree that the "hard chrome" finish that firearm manufacturer's and most refinishers offer, could not be removed by usage in an AR15's bolt carrier assembly... unless the surface wasn't prepared right and the substrate layer was contaminated.

The large gun manufacturer's that offer "hard chrome", what they are talking about is a decorative chrome finish(nothing to sneeze at in comparison to hard chrome) that has been chromed twice or their plating process is a very long one which gives a thicker & stronger plating in comparison to a regular chrome finish. The military has opted not to go with hard chroming the bolt carrier assembly due to COST, not durability! True hard chroming is not only materially expensive, but very dangerous also... both of these facts make it much more expensive.

During my lifetime, i have seen VERY few "true" hard chromed firearms. If you happen to see one that is somewhat splotchy, now you know.

Link Posted: 12/17/2002 12:34:52 AM EDT
OK, so are Les Bauers bolts and carriers "true hard chromed" or not? What are the advantages of hard chromed bolt and carrier verses a stock Colt or Bushy bolt and carrier?

I like the idea of easier cleanig and maybe some tighter tolerances, but I just don't like shiny parts on my AR (at least where they're visible).

Are the titanium firing pins made of titanium or are they just titanium coated? Seems titanium might be too brittle for hard use on a firing pin, but I profess my ignorance of such things.
Link Posted: 12/17/2002 4:50:01 AM EDT
BTT
Link Posted: 12/17/2002 4:57:50 AM EDT
Skip the titanium firing pin and you should have your ejection port cover closed if you have a chromed carrier or not so its a non issue. Your carrier is not gonna give you away after the first shot is fired. Hard chrome is not bright or reflective anyway. The benefit would be improved reliability in dirty conditions, corrosion and wear resistance as well as easier cleaning. Eugene Stoner himself thought the AR15/M16 should have a hard chromed bolt and carrier.
Link Posted: 12/17/2002 8:41:39 PM EDT
Why fix what aint broke? Tighter tolerances in this area are not always a good thing, especially in a service rifle. Sure, target rifles might benefit from these types of modifications but I would opt. for a good mil-spec bolt and carrier, especially if I were going to be shooting more than 200 rounds between cleanings. Not to mention the reflective nature of a silver bolt carrier when the rest of your gun is built for stealth.

I would spend the money on ammunition or ear protection so you can hone your shooting skills and break in that machine you call a gun.
Link Posted: 12/17/2002 9:58:07 PM EDT
i wonder what JusDfacts job is at Les baer, intern, apprentice, cheif coffee engineer. yeah les is on top of the 1911 world but aside from tool steel extractors (which should have been done by everyone years ago) his ARs are over priced. a fine product yes. but only a dumbass would pay $1800 for a $1000 rifle.
Link Posted: 12/17/2002 11:16:21 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/17/2002 11:20:54 PM EDT by Werew]
TacCar,
I've never actually seen a Les Baer "hard chromed" bolt. But, as I said before, any reputable manufacturer's rendition of "hard chrome" should suit anyone just fine for firearm plating purposes.

Myself, I prefer Nickel plating. It's anti-corrosive properties are stronger and nickel isnt porous like chrome is. Many dont know this, but their "chromed" firearms actually have 1 layer of nickel plating underneath the chrome plating. Without that layer of nickel, the porous chrome would allow moisture and skin oil to seep through.

In one or 2 months hopefully, i'll have my chrome and hard chrome plating equipment and chemicals. When I do, i'll show you the difference between the two. HEHE, i'll be owning some bad ass BOOM STICKS then. Not in the aspect that they'll be chrome plated. I actually don't like exterior chrome plated firearms. I might remotely like some of the matte chrome finishes.

What i'll be doing to my own firearms, is detail hard chroming and chroming just the mechanical surfaces, nothing more.

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