Anyone used a Bushmaster Carbon-15?


August 27, 2010, 12:39 PM
Being a huge car guy I know what benefits carbon fiber can bring when applied properly. It is enormously strong given its light weight. It is also quite expensive, which is likely why it has not been seen very much in the firearms world.

Bushy makes a line of ARs with carbon receivers. Given how few of them I see it's obvious they haven't exactly set the world on fire. Has anyone handled one of these things? What were the major problems with them?

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August 27, 2010, 01:33 PM
When I went to cabelas one day, they had one but when I picked it up, I almost threw it into the air becasue I was expecting a heavier gun.

that bassiclly all the experience i have with one.

Ike R
August 27, 2010, 02:49 PM
Rented one at a local range, almost bought one as well. Extremely light and handled well, just seemed to me that I had more recoil than a reg AR. Also felt wierd, like I would be bringing an 80 lb girl to the fight instead of Chuck Norris. Was told by the RO and Owner of the store that it heats up quickly and the Carbon Fiber retains heat longer inside the chamber/bolt area. I am not a fan of hot guns as I tend to fire several hundred rounds in a good sitting.

When they said that visions of cooking off rounds when the zombies start clawing over the barricades danced in my head and I bought a new RRA to fit up just like my SD one instead.

I would suggest you do the same.

August 27, 2010, 03:02 PM
there are many kinds of strength and CF is mostly good at only one of them, which isn't particularly relevant to ARs.

the complete guns are complete crap. they're not reliable at all, and they have many proprietary parts so don't assume you can swap aftermarket parts in there.


they also sell stripped uppers and lowers made of carbon fiber. I had pretty good success with mine. They are compatible with many aftermarket parts and i was able ot build exactly the gun i wanted. I never had any reliability problems, but keep in mind this gun had a great deal of 'tuning'.

The only issue i had with it was that after 1500 rounds (i think) of matches, the charging handle latch had worn through the carbon fiber upper and won't stay closed anymore, so on the last round in a mag, the CH flies back and will smack you gently in the nose. not the end of the world, but kinda annoying.

see 3rd pic down in this thread

M2 Carbine
August 27, 2010, 04:33 PM
I don't have the AR rifle but I've had the Bushmaster Carbon 15 pistol for a long time.
There's nothing wrong with it but there's nothing special about it either.
I wouldn't buy it again.

August 27, 2010, 05:32 PM
My hunting pards son had one before Bushmaster bought them out.

His didn't work most of the time.
He sold it at a loss just to move on.


August 27, 2010, 06:18 PM
My friend bought a Carbon-15 in Nov 2008 during the panic buying season. I went with him when he bought it and the first time I picked it up thought it was too flimsy but there wasn't much choice, the shelves were pretty bare so he bought it.

Fortunately, the little rifle has been a pleasant surprise, never a malfunction in I'd guess about 500 rounds and no parts breakage. And it sure is handy and maneuverable.

He did have me put in a different trigger group and from what I could tell everything looks standard AR except the carbon receivers. Other than that it was no different to work on than any AR.

I wouldn't buy one for heavy use but for a lightweight light use AR it would be ok. One thing, don't ever "mortar" it to unstick a bolt. There are a lot of pictures of Vulcan/Hesse fiber receivers that split where the receiver extension screws on. And I've seen one picture of a C-15 that split right at the selector lever.

August 27, 2010, 07:36 PM
Have had a Carbon 15 9mm Carbine for several years. No issues, run's great.

August 27, 2010, 08:08 PM
I used a stripped Carbon-15 Upper for this ultra lightweight build: 2.jpg

They are not truly "Carbon Fiber" in the common sense of the term. It is simply injection molded nylon with carbon fibers in the plastic resin (ie instead of the common "glass-filled nylon" it is "carbon fiber-filled nylon). Nothing like a hand-wrapped carbon fiber bicycle frame.

August 27, 2010, 08:14 PM
wow, that looks pretty light weight. what's it weigh?

August 27, 2010, 08:26 PM
So the carbon fiber lowers don't have any issues but the upper has some minor issues?

With the barrel still being steel how is the balance on such rifles? I like a little barrel heavy but not much. How much lighter is carbon fiber compared to aluminum?

It's nice to know that "carbon fiber" receivers aren't the same as high end bike frames.

August 27, 2010, 10:39 PM
The carbon fiber receivers are not the same as high-end bike frames, which is a bad thing. The carbon-fiber receivers are basically the same as any glass-filled nylon component, just with carbon fiber strands instead of glass strands (Think Nylon 66 rifle, or a glock frame). Really a big step down from hand-weaved high-end bike frames.

Still its good to see that hey work fairly well and accomplish their goal of being ultra-light.

taliv: Your toys make me sick! NOT FAIR! I'd love to shoot against you at ORSA's next 3 gun, especially if you bring the blue carbon fiber wonder!

August 28, 2010, 10:48 AM
thanks v,
unfortunately, I had to give up 3gun last year due to work travel, then i traded my only shotgun for a silencerco osprey :) and am spending what little time i can afford on long range matches. bunch of friends have been talking about going as a group next month to shoot though, so maybe i'll borrow a shotgun and go with them.

August 28, 2010, 03:55 PM
It weighs 5 lb. 1 oz. (without magazine).

August 28, 2010, 04:09 PM
I also have one in 9mm and have had no problems with it at all. It's a lot of fun to shoot and sure saves on ammo costs!

I've not really pushed it too hard though and have only maybe 500-600 rounds through it. I'd not hesitate to pick it up in a self defense situation though.

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