What do you think of DPMS quality in general?


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TheGewehrGuy
December 10, 2010, 07:28 PM
Any past experiences? Ever shot one?

Do they look like cheap/ budget rifles?


What do you think?

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fastbolt
December 10, 2010, 07:51 PM
Like any other machinery, it probably depends on the quality of the parts being used.

Some years ago one of our guys using a couple of their rifles had a problem with one of them. When we examined the rifle we found that the bolt had broken across the cam pin hole.

We checked the other rifle and found a crack had started on one side of the cam pin hole.

Both bolts had a different finish, FWIW, and we didn't have any way to identify the manufacturer(s) of those bolts.

What are the odds?

I have no recent experience with their products, though.

rimfireriot
December 10, 2010, 08:00 PM
DPMS is not a good buy:

They do not High Pressure test every barrel and bolt, which is a QC issue.

The bolts are not shot peened.

The gas key is not properly staked.

The barrel is not made of quality metal.

They only do Magnetic Particle Inspection of the barrel by Batch (which means the bolt could have cracks invisible to the naked eye).

The chamber and bore are not chromed

-None of those alone is a deal breaker unless your talking about a serious fighting rifle, but even in a plinker all of those taken together drastically shorten the life of the rifle.

Most of the barrels are 1:9 twist, which works best with 55gr ammo, but does not work well with heavy match grade ammo (so real competitive shooting is probably out unless you replace the barrel).

If the DPMS is what your budget will buy, check out the Spikes M4 LE. It can be had for a reasonable price, and is comparable to Bravo Company in quality.

I have owned a DPMS, and I didn't have problems with it, but a little research and you will find that aren't built to last.

Kwanger
December 10, 2010, 08:54 PM
While DPMS is often thought of as bottom rung, there is a lot of variance between their entry level models and higher offerings. For instance, these two models:

http://www.dpmsinc.com/firearms/firearm.aspx?id=34

http://www.dpmsinc.com/firearms/firearm.aspx?id=62

are equipped with tons of choice aftermarket goodies right out the gate and street price tends to reflect excellent value.

So IMO, while the bargain bucket stuff might not be a good buy, some of their higher end stuff is.

kwelz
December 10, 2010, 09:02 PM
Pretty close to the bottom of the barrel.
I have owned a number of them and used to sell them as well as a distributor.
They had the highest return rate from dealers of any gun we sold. Most of the problems were things that should never have made it out of the factory.

Birddog1911
December 11, 2010, 07:55 AM
Rimfire nailed it. For what a DPMS costs, you can invest a small amount more, and get a far superior rifle. If you're just wanting a recreation rifle, and that it the most you can afford, you can also look at CMMG, RRA, Bushmaster, Del-Ton, Double Star.

Skylerbone
December 11, 2010, 08:21 AM
Ran into an old friend of mine a month or so ago at the lgs and chatted a bit about his son's first deployment. Wanting to familiarize himself with the AR platform he went to the range with his dad (both are active LEOs) and older DPMS along with a Colt.

A few mags in the Panther decided to empty the remaining contents of the mag. down range in a single burst. After inspection of the fire controls trigger parts were replaced and the rifle sold to be replaced with a LMT.

Anecdotal at best but my only "experience" with DPMS. I do recall the owner buying the Colt when I was in my early teens which makes it at least 20 years old. He informed me it has never had a problem of any sort.

-v-
December 11, 2010, 12:28 PM
I run a DPMS LR-308, so far 0 complaints. Its a 16" Carbine, so it has to handle much more stress than your run of the mill .22 poodle shooter. So far, I've had no trouble from mine, and it has had no trouble digesting long strings of nasty lacquer coated brown bear, or German military surplus, or anything else that can be squeezed in your magazine. With Remington or Federal hunting loads a 1.5" group at 100 yards is do-able as long as I do my part. Plan to start reloading for it soon, and see if I can get my groupings down. So far, I have had exactly 0 issues out of the box. As always, I think some of this boils down to having to justify spending 2-3x more on one toy versus another and why that more expensive toy is better.

krinko
December 11, 2010, 12:38 PM
"They only do Magnetic Particle Inspection of the barrel by Batch (which means the bolt could have cracks invisible to the naked eye).
----A little English Grammar QC needed there, don't you think?

My DPMS LR 308 is a high quality rifle---no play between upper and lower, fit and finish are first rate. After a year in my possession, I have not seen any degradation of performance or appearance---one failure to feed from the C-products magazine, none from the factory mags.

The Lawyer Trigger was replaced by a Rock River two stage---so one may say I didn't like the factory unit...and the DPMS Logo looks like a fat Buddha when turned upside down.
So there are those two problems.
Also, I heard that some guy from DPMS kicked a puppy once---you might want to consider that when evaluating the rifle.

Spikes---there are three sets of uppers/lowers from Spikes at the local shop.
One of each will run about $800---and they are nicely made. It's just necessary to assemble one possible combination with a rubber mallet, which everyone should have in their shooting bag.

-----krinko

Added link to a review at Gunboards.
http://forums.gunboards.com/showthread.php?139304-Long-review-of-my-new-DPMS-LR308-b-A2-rifle.

Offfhand
December 11, 2010, 12:43 PM
Posted above:

"The barrel is not made of quality metal."

Please describe "quality metal" as opposed to what DPMS uses.
Thanks

nathan
December 11, 2010, 12:51 PM
The BCM is theway to go from all those who know quality.

jerkface11
December 11, 2010, 01:21 PM
Most of the barrels are 1:9 twist, which works best with 55gr ammo,

So now 1:9 is only good for 55gr bullets?? Mine shot 69gr bullets very well I better not let it read this.

rimfireriot
December 11, 2010, 01:23 PM
Krinko:
To the snide part about English QC, good thing nobody paid for my post, huh?
They do, however, pay for rifles, and the poor QC of a DPMS is inexcusable.

So you can attack the typo, fine you caught me, but you still have to admit doing batch only MPI testing on bolts & barrels is pretty poor QC when even small shops can MPI test every single bolt and barrel and still compete with DPMS pricing.

As to the comment from offfhand: DPMS uses 4140, which is passable. I will grant you that "not made of quality metal" isn't the correct way to phrase it, and was a mistake on my part. I should have said "many manufactures use higher quality metal, such as B-11595E"

Admitting to a poor choice of words doesn't change the fact that for the same price, or very close to, you can find an AR made of better material, with better QC practices than a DPMS.

rimfireriot
December 11, 2010, 01:27 PM
jerkface: At what point did I say "only good for 55gr bullets"? I said "works best." Those are different statements.

jerkface11
December 11, 2010, 01:33 PM
Then what does 1:12 work "best" for?

Mags
December 11, 2010, 01:37 PM
I think DPMS billet 308 rifles are worthy of their 8-1500 dollar price tag but in no way in todays market with Spikes, BCM and DD can DPMS justify their prices for the quality of their .223 offerings.

Win1892
December 11, 2010, 01:39 PM
I gave found their bare receivers to be a great basis for a project. Nice finish, great fit.

rimfireriot
December 11, 2010, 01:45 PM
1:12 is also great for .223, specifically if you stay 55gr and under. 55gr and over you have more versatility with 1:7 than probably any other twist.

Again, you're taking what I said out of context, to bring up 1:12 you're making it seem like I said "55gr bullets work best out of 1:9" which isn't the case. I said "1:9 works best with 55g"

Those, again, are different statements. I didn't say from what barrel a 55gr bullet will stabilize best when fired. I said what bullet weight 1:9 will best stabilize.

351 WINCHESTER
December 11, 2010, 01:47 PM
I find this thread amusing. Two years ago dpms was considered a good solid platform by THR.

Mags
December 11, 2010, 01:49 PM
Two years ago dpms was considered a good solid platform by THR Could you get a DD, BCM, or Spike for the same price even less two years ago? All I am saying is in today's market the price of DPMS 223s aren't justified by their parts/quality.

jerkface11
December 11, 2010, 01:51 PM
And no matter what you said you were wrong. 1:9 will stabilize 69gr bullets I've used one out to 300 meters. It was still shooting good groups and all the bullet holes were round. 1:7 is more versatile but you don't need it for 69grs.

Mags
December 11, 2010, 01:56 PM
Really guys can't you start a new thread on twist rates? Anyone who wants to read about DPMS quality has to mull through a half dozen posts (including mine) squabbling about twist rates.

rimfireriot
December 11, 2010, 02:00 PM
Jerkface, that might be your experience, but it isn't mine. The truth is we're both technically "wrong." Weight isn't the key factor in stabilization: length is, but heavier bullets are often longer.

Maybe we're shooting different lengths of bullets, so you're seeing better performance out of 1:9 than I did?

krinko
December 11, 2010, 07:48 PM
"Could you get a DD, BCM, or Spike for the same price even less two years ago? "

The Boutique Builders are doing price dumps to move product in a very slow market, is that any reason to start trashing DPMS?

I don't have access to the cost/price figures for DPMS, or any other builder, so I hesitate to cry "Foul!"---but here's a thought---if the BBs have dropped their prices, does that mean they're taking a loss on each rifle, or that they were grossly overcharging you previously?

Let's spread the hostility around evenly, people.
-----krinko

taliv
December 11, 2010, 07:53 PM
DPMS makes good varmint rifles and good CMP/NRA HP service rifle ARs.
Their m4 clones / tactical guns are crap.

Mags
December 11, 2010, 07:58 PM
The Boutique Builders are doing price dumps to move product in a very slow market, is that any reason to start trashing DPMS?
What the heck are you talking about? Have you read my posts? By the way the AR market is in no way slow, saturated yes, slow no way!

Why would you pay 900 dollars for a rifle made of inferior parts when for 100 dollars less or the same price you can get a mil-spec rifle. If the DPMS M4gerys were priced at 5-600 dollars they would be great for the money but nowadays they just aren't a deal.

The fact of the matter is DPMS just isn't staying competitve with the "boutiqe builders". LOL, like DD, BCM, or Spikes is a boutiqe builder. It ain't 2008 get with the times man!

Also note, I am not saying DPMS is crap I am saying for the money you can buy a better rifle.

taliv
December 11, 2010, 08:05 PM
http://www.smartgunner.com/DanielDefenseAimpoint.aspx

when you can get a custom DD complete upper AND aimpoint micro t1 for $1000, DPMS had better be a heckuva lot cheaper than $5-600 to be any sort of good deal. ironically, the cheaper they make them, the less they're worth. so pushing DPMS to cut corners isn't really in anyone's best interest

Mags
December 11, 2010, 08:44 PM
Good point, they wouldn't maintain their mediocrity but cut even more corners to cut the price.

rimfireriot
December 11, 2010, 09:53 PM
I feel bad for Hi-Jacking the thread bickering about twist rates. Mags was right I should have stuck to the "High Road" and let it go.

For my part: I recommend Spikes Tactical for those on a budget, and Daniel Defense for those with a little more spare change.

Bravo Company and LMT are also great, but I've only shot them... never owned them.

Ultimately, I think we can sum this thread up in 1 paragraph, that most "High Roaders" will agree with:

A much better rifle can be purchased today, for the same amount as a DPMS. Some of those who own a DPMS might be happy with their rifles, but there is no reason to settle for less in today's market. Your hard earned dollars will be stretched much further by purchasing from a different manufacturer.

RUDY850
December 11, 2010, 10:09 PM
DPMS is not a good buy:

They do not High Pressure test every barrel and bolt, which is a QC issue.

The bolts are not shot peened.

The gas key is not properly staked.

The barrel is not made of quality metal.

They only do Magnetic Particle Inspection of the barrel by Batch (which means the bolt could have cracks invisible to the naked eye).

The chamber and bore are not chromed

-None of those alone is a deal breaker unless your talking about a serious fighting rifle, but even in a plinker all of those taken together drastically shorten the life of the rifle.

Most of the barrels are 1:9 twist, which works best with 55gr ammo, but does not work well with heavy match grade ammo (so real competitive shooting is probably out unless you replace the barrel).

If the DPMS is what your budget will buy, check out the Spikes M4 LE. It can be had for a reasonable price, and is comparable to Bravo Company in quality.

I have owned a DPMS, and I didn't have problems with it, but a little research and you will find that aren't built to last.
I did not know that about DPMS

What about bushmaster and stag arms Thats what I have

Spacemanvic
December 11, 2010, 10:26 PM
Hey, anyone else having trouble getting onto spike tactical site?

rimfireriot
December 11, 2010, 10:44 PM
I have no clue about Stag uppers, I'm not sure I've ever handled one.

I know Stag makes a quality lower, a guy at my local range, who always seems to shoot on the same days as me, has a BCM upper on a Stag lower, I was pretty impressed with the lower. I think they made the Smith & Wesson lower for the M&P for a little while, but that is all in house now.

I don't really have an opinion on Bushmaster. I've only handled the ACR, and I wasn't impressed, but that is a far cry from their ARs.

Z-Michigan
December 11, 2010, 10:48 PM
If you want an M4 clone, nearly all you need to know is here:

http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=pwswheghNQsEuEhjFwPrgTA&single=true&gid=5&output=html

In general, DPMS complete rifles in .223 are OK for casual sporting use, far from anything you would want for "serious" use. They are not a good value in the current market.

The DPMS .308 rifles are somewhat better, a mixture of inherently better quality and assembly of the rifle (vs. their .223 offerings) and far less competition in the .308 AR market. The 308 rifles are quite passable for most sporting use, but still not in the league where I would recommend one for police, military or other "serious" uses. The DPMS .308 is generally a good value, unlike their .223 product.

In the current market, I would recommend BCM, LMT or DD if your budget is fairly large, and Spike's or Armalite on a somewhat smaller budget. There are many other good options (nearly all better than DPMS) in various price ranges, but it's difficult to make one comprehensive list.

Spacemanvic
December 11, 2010, 11:01 PM
http://forums.officer.com/showthread.php?81462-So-you-want-to-buy-an-AR-15-huh
Great guide article in choosing an AR, regardless of brand. Breaks the AR down by component level and what you should look out for.

krinko
December 12, 2010, 12:02 AM
"By the way the AR market is in no way slow, saturated yes, slow no way!'

OK, that's an oxymoron.
Maybe the trade is still steady in other parts of the country, maybe even brisk, but they're not moving well around here. My apologies for overextending a local trend, if that's the case.


Well, some of the guys have managed to almost say something nice about the DPMS LR308. I say "almost" because it is really "damning with faint praise", as the saying goes.
I don't think any of those comments were written by owners of the LR308, however, so I'll make one more remark for the OP---
Mine has a 24" free-floated Bull barrel and I shoot it offhand, with iron sights. It's so heavy, the wind can't blow us around much...so it's ideal in that respect
I'll be shooting silhouette with it next year and I plan on cleaning some clocks, the rifle is certainly capable-----in performance and quality.

The logo is still terrible, though.
-----krinko

Z-Michigan
December 12, 2010, 01:04 AM
Well, some of the guys have managed to almost say something nice about the DPMS LR308. I say "almost" because it is really "damning with faint praise", as the saying goes.
I don't think any of those comments were written by owners of the LR308,

I own an LR-308B, as I've posted on here numerous times.

It is quite accurate in limited testing. It also weighs nearly 10lbs with a 18" barrel and is so front-heavy you must be strong to aim it at all. It has the typical gritty awful trigger of less expensive ARs. The lower is quite nice in appearance and finish. The upper is well finished but the extrusion process makes it massive. Pretty much all finish details look good within the realm of AR standards. If you want a new semiauto .308 for under $1000, the LR-308 is a good choice among the very few choices you have. If you compare it to something like an LMT .308 or the POF-308 (I've handled both and shot the latter) it's not as impressive, but it costs about 1/3 as much as those.

Mags
December 12, 2010, 10:09 AM
Well, some of the guys have managed to almost say something nice about the DPMS LR308. I say "almost" because it is really "damning with faint praise", as the saying goes.
I don't think any of those comments were written by owners of the LR308, I have a LR308 as well, I am just not blindly loyal to DPMS.

http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y24/hossdelgado/100_0011.jpg

loadedround
December 12, 2010, 11:07 AM
I've read all the bickering about DPMS with much amusement. I'm really surprised that this company went from making a decent product to a difinite POS in such short period of time. FYI, I own a DPMS Match AR15 rifle with a so called crappy 20 inch heavy barrel in SS. So far I have put over 3000 rounds of ammo through my POS w/o one single malfunction or broken part. I did change it's heavy factory trigger to a Chip McCormick match trigger and my POS shoots under 1/2'' with proper reloaded ammo. So, any of you bad mouths want to put your money where your unknowedgeable mouths are for a buck a shot? My POS is up to it, is yours?

kwelz
December 12, 2010, 11:56 AM
I've read all the bickering about DPMS with much amusement. I'm really surprised that this company went from making a decent product to a difinite POS in such short period of time. FYI, I own a DPMS Match AR15 rifle with a so called crappy 20 inch heavy barrel in SS. So far I have put over 3000 rounds of ammo through my POS w/o one single malfunction or broken part. I did change it's heavy factory trigger to a Chip McCormick match trigger and my POS shoots under 1/2'' with proper reloaded ammo. So, any of you bad mouths want to put your money where your unknowedgeable mouths are for a buck a shot? My POS is up to it, is yours?

DPMS has never made a decent product. Their QC is sub par as is their workmanship. They use accurate barrels? Ok great. That doesn't mean the gun will hold up well. If you are just shooting dirt of doing slow accurate fire then that will probably be ok. If you are going to be running the gun hard then it isn't good enough.

You have put 3000 rounds through your gun? Ok that is fine. In what period of time? A month? A year? 2, 3, 4 years? Running a gun hard is not the same as putting a few rounds down range every once and a while.

Also your sample size is 1. That is not enough to make any real determination. DPMS has earned its negative reputation from a pattern over time of being inconsistent at best and leaning towards bad a lot.

X-Rap
December 12, 2010, 12:07 PM
So what is their biggest flaw, bolts, barrels, receivers, trigger groups?
I remember not long ago when guns made from various manufactures were unaffectionately called frankenguns. Now they are almost the norm. This is understandable since some companies seem to make superior parts but then some are made by the same and just relabeled.
With so many companies and different parts it is tough to know what is the best, what will do and what to stay away from at all costs.
How much difference for example is a chrome lined vs. a ss barrel?

jerkface11
December 12, 2010, 12:39 PM
Maybe we're shooting different lengths of bullets, so you're seeing better performance out of 1:9 than I did?

Always possible I was shooting nosler 69gr match bullets.

kwelz
December 12, 2010, 01:48 PM
So what is their biggest flaw, bolts, barrels, receivers, trigger groups
Yes.

Out of spec LPKs, lack of testing or QC on bolts and Barrels. Weaker steel on barrels and bolts.

Frankenguns aren't just a gun made from multiple manufacturers. They are guns made from sub par or undesirable parts that are also badly put together. That is what makes a Frankengun different from a Custom gun.

W.E.G.
December 12, 2010, 02:07 PM
Wow,... so much nit-picking.

I guess it helps that I actually understand the weapon, and can actually change a light bulb if need be.

I removed the box-stock trigger from my DPMS LR-308-T, and replaced it with a Rock River two-stage. Had to fit (i.e. DREMEL) the selector just a little bit to clear the tail of the hammer. OMG... the LPK is "out of spec." (rolleyes)
http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/rifle%20pics/DPMS/rockriver07.jpg

The thing shoots like a house on fire.
Mind you, I haven't taken it out and put a million rounds through it from the "urban prone" position, so you can take my opinion and experience for what its worth.

100 yards benchrest
http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/targets/2008-08-18%20-%20DPMS/M852smaller.jpg
http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/rifle%20pics/DPMS/DSCN4982.jpg

-v-
December 12, 2010, 02:16 PM
I am still tickled to death that somehow barrels made of 4140 steel are utter crap, but ones of 4150 are the end all be-all (0.10% more carbon, specification range of 0.38–0.43 for 4140 versus 0.48-0.53 in 4150) somehow makes that steel utter crap. Sure, if we are all running F?A lowers, and a shooting session never runs less than 10 consecutive magazine dumps, the 4150 is superior to 4140, but for 100% of our applications, 4140 does an equal job to 4150.

Again, as with all things, you have to answer the question of where do you want to be on the curve of diminishing returns. Is 100% increase in price worth a 0.1% increase in performance?

Is DPMS the Cat's Meow? No. Is it as bit a pile of smoldering crap as everyone who hasn't had one seems intent on making it out, no.

"By the way the AR market is in no way slow, saturated yes, slow no way!" - Hehe. Saturated = slow. If there's more product then buyer, when you have guns sitting on shelves for months without them so much as getting looked at, the market is indeed slow.

walking arsenal
December 12, 2010, 02:17 PM
I think it's important that in this discussion we sort out personal preference from actual mechanical issues.

For what it's worth.

I remember attending a two day machine gun shoot at which DPMS was present.

I was helping work the range and DPMS had one of their full auto "Kitty kat" rifles there.

The kitty Kat is an entry rifle with a 7 inch barrel. People would pay 8 bucks for a preloaded mag and then would basically just spray the ammo through the gun for kicks and then hand it back to the rep.

The only care that rifle saw was when the upper was pulled and then dunked in a bucket of oil every few mags to cool the upper off enough so that the next shooter could touch it.

That gun must have seen 5,000 rounds that weekend at least. Never missed a beat as far as I saw.


That said. My friend has a one of their sport tactical rifles and it chokes on everything but mil-spec 5.56

Go figure.

wriggly
December 12, 2010, 03:01 PM
I asked about DPMS on another forum a few months back, and a member that is an armorer for the military in Iraq chimed in. He basically poo poo'd DPMS and when I put out the response that some of the problems he had seen might have been from contractors that created their own frankenguns and hence some of their own troubles, his reply to that was........

"The DPMS guns I worked on in Iraq weren't parts guns. They were factory purchased select-fire models. When I used a chamber reamer on them it removed quite a bit of material from the chamber.

In addition when I had to remove the FSB pins from the weapon to install a free floating rail some of them actually bent because they were made from soft metal. The underside of the FSB was also not parkerized.

In addition they had rifle type extractors installed. I asked a couple of guys if they had problems with failures to extract and they all said yes.

That was due to the chamber and weak extractors."

Mags
December 12, 2010, 04:27 PM
When my DPMS 308 arrived NIB the feedlips on the mags were cracked and bent. I contacted DPMS and they wanted me to send them back on my dime to get them replaced. Paying 10 dollars shipping to get 20 dollar mags replaced is a little ridiculous.

Horvath819
December 12, 2010, 04:43 PM
Wow and I just ordered a DPMS AR-15, wish I would have heard about all these problems before hand. :banghead: I might end up just sending it back before I open a can of worms.

kimberkid
December 12, 2010, 05:20 PM
I've had zero trouble with either of mine, and they both shoot under .75" @ 100, but they aren't entry level guns either.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v40/kimberkid/Toys/P2100241.jpg

1858
December 12, 2010, 05:37 PM
You have put 3000 rounds through your gun? Ok that is fine. In what period of time? A month? A year? 2, 3, 4 years? Running a gun hard is not the same as putting a few rounds down range every once and a while.

What's the difference for an AR (from an engineering standpoint) between 3,000 rounds in three days vs. 3,000 rounds in three years?

As for DPMS, I have a DPMS upper with a stainless steel 24" heavy fluted barrel with a 1:8 twist on a BM lower. It's been nothing short of excellent. I use it for 90 round matches out to 600 yards and lots of load development. It also makes for a great rifle for new shooters since it's very accurate and easy to shoot. I've put a few thousand rounds through it without a single issue. Many of those rounds during rapid fire stages with minimal cooling of the barrel or related parts. So far, so good.

Bartholomew Roberts
December 12, 2010, 05:53 PM
I asked about DPMS on another forum a few months back, and a member that is an armorer for the military in Iraq chimed in

Why is a military armorer in Iraq working on DPMS rifles? Also, the M4 and M16 use the same extractor. It is the extractor spring and insert that are different. Don't know who your source is; but those strike me as odd parts of his story.

What's the difference for an AR (from an engineering standpoint) between 3,000 rounds in three days vs. 3,000 rounds in three years?

Heat. Heat increases throat erosion, kills spring temper and increases forces on parts in extraction (because higher heat means brass takes longer to obturate).

taliv
December 12, 2010, 06:25 PM
also, you shoot 3000 rnds in 3 days and the assumption is you're not cleaning more often than once/1000 rnds, probably not at all.

shoot 3000 rnds in 3 yrs and the assumption is you are shooting 100 rnds per day and cleaning between range trips.

kwelz
December 12, 2010, 06:36 PM
Why is a military armorer in Iraq working on DPMS rifles? Also, the M4 and M16 use the same extractor. It is the extractor spring and insert that are different. Don't know who your source is; but those strike me as odd parts of his story.

PMC armorer. One of the guys on M4C is the armorer for a PMC over there and has many horror stories about Bushmaster rifles that were forced on the guys he worked with. In fact I believe that may be what is begin referred to here.

Joe Demko
December 12, 2010, 06:37 PM
The DPMS guns I worked on in Iraq weren't parts guns. They were factory purchased select-fire models. When I used a chamber reamer on them it removed quite a bit of material from the chamber.


Uncle Sam's rifles all have chrome lined chambers and bores. Perhaps somebody who was an armorer can confirm whether such barrels are reamed and, if so, by unit armorers.

kwelz
December 12, 2010, 06:38 PM
Heat. Heat increases throat erosion, kills spring temper and increases forces on parts in extraction (because higher heat means brass takes longer to obturate).

Correct.

Think of it like a car engine. Run it slow and steady and even a crappy car will last a couple hundred thousand miles. Run it fast and hard and you start to see which engine is really made to take it.

jem375
December 12, 2010, 06:42 PM
We have 3 DPMS rifles in the family and not a problem with any of them. Mine is my coyote and prairie dog rifle, 20" SS bull barrel left hand and very accurate. We do a lot of shooting at our gun club and after watching some of my fellow shooters with their Colts, RRA's, Bushmasters and etc will stick to DPMS.

RoboDuck
December 12, 2010, 07:18 PM
Mine has about 5000 rounds though it with no problems . The only mod was to change the trigger to a JP.

X-Rap
December 12, 2010, 07:32 PM
So how does SS stand up to heat compared to CL barrels?
Does DPMS use crappy springs and pins? That seems like a poor place to skimp.
I can see difference in barrels and BCG's if they are not tested to the levels of others. but even then what is the failure rate?

Mags
December 12, 2010, 07:37 PM
Anyone else notice those who love their DPMS rifles don't own M4 clones but more of a varmint hunting style rifle?

Skylerbone
December 12, 2010, 08:13 PM
I think what's being argued here comes down to whether milspec is truly better than any other way of doing things. It may be agreed by all that our military has more combined experience with the platform than any other single entity. Therefore it stands to reason that refinements have been made to improve durability and dependability perhaps at a slight cost to absolute accuracy (though we ought to have a few head-to-head comparisons of lined vs. unlined barrels to verify).

The further from spec a given "manufacturer" chooses to be may be said to make their product more vulnerable to breakdowns under more extreme conditions. If they are indeed "sporting rifles" as advertised, those manufacturers are implying the use of said rifles is purly recreational and in no way connected to it's military brethren.

It may not necessarily mean cheaper parts (though it usually does) but rather less stringent assembly methods, testing and perhaps Q.C.

Within those parameters very few ARs may be seen as "quality" rifles, but most will satisfy the role they were purchased for. Regardless of whose logo appears on the receiver, it is ultimately the owner's responsibility to be familiar with it, inspect it frequently for problems and of course choose it based on the purpose at hand.

Some guys have a Corvette convertible in the garage but drive a beater F150 when the snow flies. Whose to say which is the better choice for the money spent.

jem375
December 13, 2010, 12:48 AM
I get a big kick out of someone who thinks an accurate rifle used to hunt with can't be used for a SHTF rifle. Obviously they don't know their history from the good old days...

Horvath819
December 13, 2010, 01:24 AM
^This is how I feel too. The bad guys not going to know the difference if he got shot by a DPMS or a Colt.

Skylerbone
December 13, 2010, 01:34 AM
Many people are quite aware of the firearms used throughout history from the poorly armed militias of colonial days to the good ole boy hunting rifles fielded in SE Asia.

But if the SHTF would you rather have a Yugo or a Hummer to get out of Dodge? That's the question at hand. It's not an indictment of DPMS or any one particular brand, something I failed to understand some months earlier (just ask Azizza;-). My RRA falls squarely into the same boat as DPMS but I still have confidence in it performing those duties I purchased it for. That does not include zombies or anything that hits a fan.

RockyMtnTactical
December 13, 2010, 04:27 AM
Their stripped lowers are usually inexpensive and work well. That is all I have really used from them.

loadedround
December 13, 2010, 10:05 AM
Azizza: Why don't you back up your arguments with some facts or notable articles! Have you actually owned or shot a DPMS made rifle. I truly believe you are just spreading dribble resulting from hanging around the gun store "Big Dogs" too long.

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 10:26 AM
Loadedround I have listed my reasons for disliking DPMS before as many people on this thread can attest too.

I will give you the abridged version.

I have owned numerous DPMS rifles.
I was a Distributor for DPMS rifles.

Of the personal guns I owned 2 had bad chambers from the factory that rendered the guns incapable of firing mroe than 1 round at a time and lead to badly deformed brass.

Another had a broken FSB after an fairly low number of rounds.


As a Distributor I had more DPMS rifles come back per 100 than any other brand BY FAR!. Broken stocks in Shipping, Broken Charging handles. Out of spec parts. One that would fire once when you pulled the trigger, and another that would fire when you let off.

Thankfully the dealers caught most of these before they sold them but some issues only came up after the guns were sold to individuals then I had irate dealers calling me.

But don't take my word for it. Ask Pat Rogers, Larry Vickers, Chris Costa, Ken Hackathorn, or just about any other well known instructor what they think of DPMS quality and QC.

I have no use for Gun store (or internet) "big dogs" They spend their time talking a big talk. I prefer learning from people who actually put it into practice. That is why I spent Saturday in the cold and rain in a Vickers Shooting Method class.

So I will ask you the same thing. Give me some facts that you feel show DPMS are better quality than I say they are. Disprove me. If I am wrong I will be the first to say so. I have done so publicly here before.

Heck it is almost painful to look back at some of my old post where I made excuses for bad products and glossed over the facts out of loyalty to companies where I knew people. But I was wrong, I have learned, and will continue to learn. If DPMS come out tomorrow and started putting out a good high quality product I would go out and purchase it. If Colt started putting out crap I would not buy their stuff anymore. It is as simple as that.

X-Rap
December 13, 2010, 10:43 AM
But is a Yugo Hummer analogy really right? Many of these AR parts could be thrown in a box and mixed up and I doubt if the average and maybe the above average shooters could pick the difference in the parts that aren't labeled. I could tell the difference of the yugo and hummer while blind folded by smell.
Is there a place that says definitively that such and such barrels fail catastrophically or the same with bolts, extractors, trigger parts. With so many different labels but fewer real manufacturers how can we tell the difference.

Fish Miner
December 13, 2010, 10:46 AM
Saturday I was at the range shooting my stock POS DPMS. I do not do bench shooting, I like dumping rounds in controlled 2-3 round bursts offhand. At 50 yards I am all with in a hand print.

I have never had a jam, mis-feed, mis-fire, FTF, FTE and am near 2500 rounds. I use the stock mags still, never touched the trigger. Iron sites. I did add a quad rail and a forward grip.

The parts all fit, it goes bang.

Plus my wife gave it to me for X-Mas one year. She bought it on her own without my knowledge. I love my DPMS, and I think she did a great job buying me a rifle. Her first gun purchase I might add.

FWIW- my friend bought a Spikes from Spike at a gun show here in Orlando. had to return in the next week cause the gun would not cycle. They replaced it, but his gun was out of action for a couple weeks and he prob paid 3x what I have in it.

Opinions are like butt holes, everyone has one and sometimes they stink.

Sky
December 13, 2010, 10:52 AM
Shucks Azizza you are getting mellow in your old age. hahahaha by the way good rebuttal

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 11:24 AM
Sky, more flies with honey and all that.
My goal has always been to learn and pass that acquired knowledge onto others.
I don't do this just to argue with people. I feel knowledge is important and discussion and debate is important in furthering our knowledge.

We all know that anything mechanical can and will break. Especially in a high heat high friction environment like an AR. The question is how often will it fail and what is a company doing to reduce those chances.

People often seem to think that when I, or Rob, or someone else talks about DPMS quality we are saying that they will all fail and that Colt or BCM will always work. This is far from the case.

I have seen high round count DPMS rifles, and a friend of mine had a Colt 6721 a couple years ago that was abysmal from the start. What we are talking about is the averages.

Lets look at an example.

We will use Colt and DPMS as examples here. Assume that the guns are configured roughly the same. 16 inch, collapsible stock, removable CH, Etc.

Cost of the Colt is $1,150
Cost of the DPMS is $950.00

Now the colt has a few visible things the DPMS doesn't. Chrome lined barrel, M4 Feedramps, a heat guard in the handguards. It also has some less obvious advantages but we will ignore those for now.

(Now the numbers I am about to use are completely made up. So don't think I am giving actual statistics here.)

Say that out of 1,000 Colt rifles sold you have 5 with problems.
Now say that out of 1,000 DPMS rifles sold you had 50 with problems.

So for 200 Dollars we have a gun with a couple more features you can see and a lower return rate. To me this is an obvious choice. And we still haven't taken into account the better steel used in the barrels, testing done to the parts, etc.

FlyinBryan
December 13, 2010, 01:07 PM
Of the personal guns I owned 2 had bad chambers from the factory that rendered the guns incapable of firing mroe than 1 round at a time and lead to badly deformed brass.

ive never seen one that can fire more than one at a time :D

X-Rap
December 13, 2010, 01:54 PM
I am wondering about the real world, competition guns will usually be heavily modified as might those of a "serious shooter".
The AR/M16 has the unusual distinction of being probably the most copied weapon in the free world with all but the worst parts being readily interchangeable with one another for the most part. There are charts and other comparisons out there but I have yet to see one that actually has failure rates or anything close to a side by side test. I think many comparisons are made based on the MIL SPEC but have heard that it doesn't necessarily mean that one out of spec has poorer quality, CL barrels would be an example.
The price of a DPMS M4gery at times hits around $800 as well as many entry level AR's but I can't say I've seen a new Colt in any configuration lately for under $1300. That leaves a much wider gap than $200.
I bought a new Colt back when they were expensive at $650. (yea I wish I would have bought a truckload). Since I have bought a couple DPMS, a BM lower with what was advertised as an FN barreled 16" upper plus 3 that I built from what I hope are good parts on Sun Devil, Spikes, and Daniel Defence reciever uppers and lowers.
I have SS, CL, and CM barrels from 14.5"-20" I can't claim much more than 5000 rds from anyone rifle but haven't had a problem with any and at times they have been heated up pretty good. I guess my question still goes back to wanting more than just anecdotal examples of failures. If there are clearly and tested parts that are better I want to get them on my "serious rifles" at the minimum but I don't want to spend money needlessly just to have what the "big dogs" have. Does that make sense?

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 02:04 PM
I haven't seen new AP4s that cheap but I don't doubt you that they are out there. I do however see a lot of 6920s at 1100. And Colt is the most extreme case. If you start looking at DD, BCM, or other brands of similar quality then the price difference comes out to a couple of lunches at your local sit down restaurant.

X-Rap
December 13, 2010, 02:20 PM
I doubt if I will ever buy another assembled rifle unless its a real steal, I got my CL DPMS14.5 perm att. FS for $650. near new.
What I want is to make sure to get the right balance of quality vs. cost, especially if it is a build and can configure as you like.

Skylerbone
December 13, 2010, 02:33 PM
X-Rap, for the testing you'll have to look at why certain materials and methods of assembly are used in the milspec rifles. For example:

Mild steel vs armor plating on a Humvee. No brainer as to which to use in a combat zone. Now check the chart for the specific steel used for barrels by specific vendors. They are chosen for their properties or for cost. Cheaper barrel blank means cost savings.

Assembly. Anyone ever had Sauder furniture from WalMart? Would you choose it over handmade Amish furniture at a 10% price savings? How about butt joints glued together vs. a full dovetail? Which do you know is MUCH MORE LIKELY to last?

What is anecdotal are the stories of Yugos hitting 500,000 miles with only routine maintainence or the Ford Escort that drove the Rubicon. Exceptions do not rewrite the book.

Choose by need and use it accordingly is sound advice. If lives are on the line, better safe than sorry. Ask Mr. Vickers what he says about buying cheap.

X-Rap
December 13, 2010, 03:14 PM
With all due respect, the steel in barrels aside because I really haven't heard of failure in these regardless of steel composition. What I have heard is that CL is maybe not as accurate as some of the other options but is better suited in wet, salt, corrosive environments.
My concern is more to the small parts like springs, pins, and BCG's. For instance is the nitride finished bolt from DPMS superior to a milspec one from someone else?
Are after market triggers by Geissele or JP etc. mil spec?
It seems most recievers are 7075 T6.
Bolts are 8620 S or 416 SS
Barrels are 4140, 4150 S or 410, 416 SS
DPMS claims milspec on their parts kits
Heck I don't think PMags are milspec yet, maybe the whole MagPul line.
I name DPMS because that is the topic of the OP but I suspect many brands fall under the same poor reports but I still suspect that many parts sources are shared across the board with packaging being the primary difference as well as the name on the label.
I wonder who makes the small parts for LaRue?

X-Rap
December 13, 2010, 03:24 PM
I am seriously worried that Chicom parts will start to or already have entered the parts stream. I know we have many of their guns here already but if ever there was a possibility of going of spec and tolerance it will be from Chinese parts.

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 03:29 PM
MilSpec (How I hate that term) is misused a lot. What you mean by Milspec is actually referring to the TDP. The Technical Data Package is a set of guidelines that a gun MUST follow to be allowed into service. It is essentially a set of ranges or Minimums that must be met and the testing requirements that a gun must go through.

There are very few manufacturers who actually meet these specs and only a couple who exceed them. DPMS claims mil spec because their parts will interchange with a Military gun. However that is not what makes a gun, or the parts, suitable for use.

You say your concern is more with the small parts, and you would not be incorrect in saying that. However a DPMS parts kit is not the same as a Colt or DD, or LMT kit. They do not meet the minimum requirements. The most obvious problem with them is the oversize roll pins but looking though a normal LPK will show a number of other issues including mis-made parts and bad QC letting things like a cracked sear through.

I will address some of your direct examples as well.
For instance is the nitride finished bolt from DPMS superior to a milspec one from someone else?

Possibly, but the bolt will be inferior. Finish means nothing if the bolt breaks.

Heck I don't think PMags are milspec yet, maybe the whole MagPul line.

Nope but they do have a cage code, and more importantly they exceed the durability and reliability requirements of the STANAG mags. Once again it isn't about matching the look of something. It is about meeting or exceeding the requirements set forth in the TDP or RFP.

Bolts are 8620 S or 416 SS
Yeah but how many companies Shoot peen them?

Z-Michigan
December 13, 2010, 03:33 PM
My concern is more to the small parts like springs, pins, and BCG's. For instance is the nitride finished bolt from DPMS superior to a milspec one from someone else?

The nitride treatment is potentially good but the bolt itself probably is not the best steel (milspec is Carpenter 158, most commercial bolts are 8620) and very likely is not shot peened, a process that really matters but is invisible and often skipped.

Are after market triggers by Geissele or JP etc. mil spec?

No, with the exception of certain Geissele triggers (which would not meet the standard spec, but have been accepted by the military for DMR use). Many aftermarket triggers are known for breaking or premature wear when compared to properly made milspec triggers.

It seems most recievers are 7075 T6.

Yes, one area where most companies are using the milspec material. A few are cast, or 6061, or plastic, but the vast majority are this alloy.

Bolts are 8620 S or 416 SS

Milspec alloy is Carpenter 158, which is stronger in this use than 8620. A few low volume companies use 9310, which is potentially as good or better, but not the milspec. Most cheaper commercial bolts are 8620 and weaker than milspec. I'm not aware of any 416 SS bolts and would not want to be nearby when one was in use.

Barrels are 4140, 4150 S or 410, 416 SS

Mostly, with the caution that people claiming "4150" don't always mean the same thing - it could be just 4150, which is barely better than 4140, or it could be an alloy that meets the basic requirements of 4150 but also has other features, such as a % of vanadium, to meet on of the military-accepted alloys. All explained at the M4c chart on google.

DPMS claims milspec on their parts kits

"milspec" is used loosely and often commercially it just means the general shape and appearance of the military part. Very rarely does it mean that the part would meet every last criterion for military acceptance. Colt, LMT, and BCM make parts that do meet all criteria; I think DD and a few others do also.

FlyinBryan
December 13, 2010, 04:06 PM
Yeah but how many companies Shoot peen them?

what surfaces on a shot peened bolt are actually shot peened?

rondog
December 13, 2010, 04:12 PM
You guys are depressing me. I bought my first AR15 a few months ago from a private seller, and it's a DPMS in perfect condition, only had 92 rounds fired through it. Now I'm not going to ride it hard, use it in competition or combat, but I do plan to shoot it a lot for plinking when I can. I thought it was damn nice, except for the crappy stock trigger, and am very proud of it, but y'all are making it sound like junk. Bummin' me out.

Of course, people spit on my RIA 1911's too, and I know firsthand that they're fine pistols for my needs.

http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b150/rinselman/guns/my%20AR15/DSCN3457.jpg

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 04:19 PM
what surfaces on a shot peened bolt are actually shot peened?

My understanding is that if done correctly then all surfaces will be shot peened.

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 04:23 PM
You guys are depressing me. I bought my first AR15 a few months ago from a private seller, and it's a DPMS in perfect condition, only had 92 rounds fired through it. Now I'm not going to ride it hard, use it in competition or combat, but I do plan to shoot it a lot for plinking when I can. I thought it was damn nice, except for the crappy stock trigger, and am very proud of it, but y'all are making it sound like junk. Bummin' me out.

Of course, people spit on my RIA 1911's too, and I know firsthand that they're fine pistols for my needs.

If it suits your needs then shoot it and be happy with it. What you have to understand is that this argument comes up when people start asking about what gun to use for HD, training, or SHTF. Or when they ask about which gun is "best". The answer to those is different than the answer to what is good for plinking or dirt shooting.

I don't have toys, or pinkers, or anything like that. It is just a different mindset. Any time I have picked up a weapon that wasn't meant for serious use I end up selling or trading it off. So my needs are obviously different from yours. There is nothing wrong with either. We just have different needs.

Shoot the gun, enjoy it. If something breaks call DPMS, they have killer Customer service. If you decide to start doing training then consider something else, but till then don't worry about it.


ETA. I would get rid of that riser on the top. Looks like about 8oz of unneeded weight. If you add an optic just get a mount already at the right height. Other than that it is a fine looking fun.

1858
December 13, 2010, 05:17 PM
Heat. Heat increases throat erosion, kills spring temper and increases forces on parts in extraction (because higher heat means brass takes longer to obturate).


Throat erosion has nothing to do with reliability. As for springs, an AR has a buffer spring, an extractor spring and a magazine spring but high temperature creep of steel occurs at approx. 40 to 50% of the melting temperature. Also, consider the extreme test comparing a POF P415 to an M4 in the link below.

http://www.pof-usa.net/articles/P416Torture.pdf

The test showed that the chamber and bolt face of the M4 barely got above 115˚F during a rapid fire session even when the gas tube melted after 264 rounds. This isn't hot enough to have any appreciable effect on spring k value. As for extraction of the brass, I'd like to see some data on fired case temperature as a function of rate of fire and then see that data correlated to extraction force required. The POF didn't have any extraction issues during the 1,036 rounds fired at a rate of fire that no one in their right mind would try to emulate. The bolt face was just over 100˚F so how would this stress the extractor spring? The chamber was at a similar temperature so extraction wouldn't be an issue either. The anti gas piston crowd have stated many times that the BCG of an M4 isn't appreciably hotter than the BCG of a gas piston AR during similar firing cycles. So if the M4 doesn't run appreciably hotter, we can assume that the chamber and bolt face would be at a similar temperature, a temperature that would have little to no effect on the longevity or reliability of the parts in question.



also, you shoot 3000 rnds in 3 days and the assumption is you're not cleaning more often than once/1000 rnds, probably not at all.

shoot 3000 rnds in 3 yrs and the assumption is you are shooting 100 rnds per day and cleaning between range trips.

But we read time and time again on this forum (and others) how the dgi AR runs 100% reliably when heavily fouled. The anti gas piston crowd is always touting how an AR doesn't need cleaning to run reliably. So which is it?



Think of it like a car engine. Run it slow and steady and even a crappy car will last a couple hundred thousand miles. Run it fast and hard and you start to see which engine is really made to take it.

Yes, the automotive analogy which simply doesn't apply here. Engine rotation speed or rpm is what matters to engine life (along with proper lubrication). The cycling speed of an AR BCG is virtually a constant regardless of temperature. Also consider that the rate of acceleration and deceleration have a significant effect on the longevity of an automobile, both the engine, drivetrain and suspension. Again, the acceleration/declaration of the BCG and other associated parts are for all intents and purposes constants for the AR.

So I don't buy into the notion that taking a class and firing 1,000 rounds in a day is significantly different to firing 1,000 rounds in a month. If it works, it works!! As for instructors and their opinion ... the firearms industry is rotten with special interests and biased opinions. I've never met an objective instructor and I've met a bunch during classes or on military ranges.

kwelz
December 13, 2010, 05:26 PM
1858, I am not seeing much point to your post except to try to stir the pot but I will try to address it as best I can.

While the rate the bolt travels at is fairly fixed, the number of times it moves in a set period of time does effect the heat buildup quite a lot. A single round doesn't do much. a long series of rounds in short order does indeed heat a gun up a lot.

You have to worry about more than just the bolt face. You have to worry about the entire gun. Barrel heat, chamber, bolt, bolt carrier. All of these things factor in because the gun will expand and contract as it heats and cools. The more it heats the more it expands. Along with the stress of firing this can lead to stress fractures in parts of the gun, especially the bolt.

Also I would like to see why you feel that throat erosion has no effect on reliability. Any time you are changing the dimensions on the gun there is the chance of causing problems.

1858
December 13, 2010, 05:34 PM
1858, I am not seeing much point to your post except to try to stir the pot but I will try to address it as best I can.

I'm not trying to stir the pot. I'm simply trying to give others a different perspective on what they actually NEED versus what others tell them they NEED.



You have to worry about more than just the bolt face. You have to worry about the entire gun. Barrel heat, chamber, bolt, bolt carrier. All of these things factor in because the gun will expand and contract as it heats and cools. The more it heats the more it expands. Along with the stress of firing this can lead to stress fractures in parts of the gun, especially the bolt.

Read the POF article in the link above to see real-world temperatures under extreme firing conditions.



Also I would like to see why you feel that throat erosion has no effect on reliability. Any time you are changing the dimensions on the gun there is the chance of causing problems.

Throat erosion has a deleterious affect on accuracy which is independent of reliability. In terms of combat accuracy, do you think that 1/2 MOA, 1 MOA or 2 MOA is important at typical engagement distances? Is it important for a civilian defending their home? Is it important for a three-gun match which some here seem to think is the ultimate test of any AR?

mljdeckard
December 13, 2010, 05:42 PM
I tghink most guns will work for most people most of the time. I think that you really do have to run a rifle HARD to show the difference between an $800 rifle and a $2000 rifle. But yes, there is still a difference.

And I very much agree with Azziza. "Mil-Spec" means your rifle matches bulk parts made by the lowest bidder. If there was a time that parts used by the military were over and above, it certainly doesn't apply now to AR rifles.

I also agree that there is a limit to how much rapid fire a rifle can handle without failing. Most people will never buy enough ammo to get there. :)

Bartholomew Roberts
December 13, 2010, 07:14 PM
Throat erosion has nothing to do with reliability.

No; but gas port erosion will effect reliability and is cause by pretty much the same things that cause throat erosion. I mentioned throat erosion just because it was the first and most obvious example of the difference between 3,000 rounds in say three days vs. one year.

The test showed that the chamber and bolt face of the M4 barely got above 115˚F during a rapid fire session even when the gas tube melted after 264 rounds. This isn't hot enough to have any appreciable effect on spring k value.

I guess it depends on what the spring is made out of; but there isn't much question that some springs fail at a very low round count. Perhaps it is just bad building that kills them rather than heat.

As for extraction of the brass, I'd like to see some data on fired case temperature as a function of rate of fire and then see that data correlated to extraction force required. The POF didn't have any extraction issues during the 1,036 rounds fired at a rate of fire that no one in their right mind would try to emulate. The bolt face was just over 100˚F so how would this stress the extractor spring?

The difference between lock time in a rifle and a carbine length gas system is 175 microseconds. 175 millionths of a second; yet that difference is enough to cause the introduction of the enhanced extractor spring in the M4 carbine. The enhanced extractor spring is necessary because with the shorter time, the brass has not had as much time to shrink away from the chamber before extraction begins and the extractor spring that worked fine in the rifle was not always doing the job in the heavier use encountered by SOCOM.

As the chamber heats up, brass takes longer to obturate. At some point, the case will overcome the ability of the bolt to extract it and the extractor will either slip off the rim or bend/bite the rim. That may not stress the extractor or extractor spring all that much; but it will cause a stoppage that you'd have never seen if you only shot the rifle 3,000 rounds a year.

Which is really the major point I was trying to make, a lot of people never see problems with their rifles because they don't shoot their rifles to anywhere near the point where they would fail.

So I don't buy into the notion that taking a class and firing 1,000 rounds in a day is significantly different to firing 1,000 rounds in a month. If it works, it works!!

Let's say you've got your Sendra-PWA rifle and it is great. It has never failed you in 3,000 rounds and is deadly accurate. Of course that fastest you have ever fired it is 10 shots in 60 seconds. You take it to a training course and discover that after 100 rounds in a few minutes, it has stoppages. Is it because the gas port was drilled out to accomodate low-powered commercial .223 ammo and now it is overgassed? Is it because the chamber is much tighter than the "5.56 NATO" stamped on the barrel in order to help produce that stellar accuracy? Is it because the buffer spring was never right to begin with and so the rifle is cycling much faster than it is supposed to? Some combination of these or any of a dozen other possible issues? The heat didn't "degrade" the rifle - it just revealed where compromises in the original design had been made in order to offer some other advantage (enhanced accuracy, reduced cost, etc.) If you never fired the rifle 1,000 rounds in a day, you'd probably go on thinking that your rifle was flawless.

All I can tell you is in three of the four formal carbine training courses I've taken, there was at least one rifle that did fine as we sighted in and started out hunky-dory; but then as the day progressed and the rifle got hot, it stopped working. Every one of those guys had never had a problem with the rifle prior to the course; but there we were trying to fix it in the middle of the course. So I've got to disagree with your "If it works, it works" theory.

Machines are built to operate reliably in a certain range of conditions, if you exceed that range, they don't work so well. The great thing about rifles that are built to the TDP is not that they are the best rifles or have the widest range of operating conditions, it is that thanks to Uncle Sam and 50 years of research, we have a pretty good outline of what those conditions are.

walking arsenal
December 13, 2010, 09:29 PM
Something to think about.

You can buy two DPMS rifles for the price of one really really really nice Daniel defense rifle.

Personally i'd be less afraid to run the 800$ rifle hard and break it than I would a rifle that cost me 1/4 years pay. I have less invested in it.

Also, If I buy an 800$ rifle I can buy optics and two cases of ammo before I can buy a base platform of some the rifles you guys are recommending.

Lets be practical.

The guys that are buying rifles that cost 2 grand (I'd love to have your job) with few exceptions are probably not running them that hard either which is why they break less.

The farm guy with the $800 DPMS is probably using that rifle for everything.

Just my thoughts.

Skylerbone
December 13, 2010, 11:17 PM
Arsenal, people are trying to be practical, stating emphatically to all who will listen to buy as much gun as you need for the task it is intended for.

The $200 difference between a Colt and a DPMS is NOT an insurmountable amount to a shooter looking to run many thousands of rounds per year through it. If that is not the intent, then a DPMS and a case of Wolf may be the better short term deal. Once potential down time, parts replacement and resale value are figured in the less expensive choice may become the cheaper gun that wasn't.

I don't ask my rifles to perform the role Azizza's do. I butted heads with him in numerous posts because I failed to understand that fit, finish and accuracy are not the entire checklist for a quality AR. (Sorry Azizza, my apology is long overdue).

Thanks to all for their information. At some point I'm sure my collection will include a second black rifle, likely from a higher tier.

1858
December 13, 2010, 11:28 PM
The difference between lock time in a rifle and a carbine length gas system is 175 microseconds. 175 millionths of a second; yet that difference is enough to cause the introduction of the enhanced extractor spring in the M4 carbine.

It wasn't just the difference in lock time. Don't forget about almost twice the chamber pressure in the carbine length gas system. There are two important issues here, not just one. The force of the cartridge case against the chamber walls is much more a function of chamber pressure than heat. I will say it again, chamber and bolt face temperatures are not that extreme, even with a high rate of fire. See the POF article.


Every one of those guys had never had a problem with the rifle prior to the course; but there we were trying to fix it in the middle of the course. So I've got to disagree with your "If it works, it works" theory.

If your AR starts to have problems within 100 rounds of the start of a class, then your AR wasn't working properly to begin with. Very few shooters take the time or the make the effort to keep any sort of accurate logs on their firearms. I have logs on EVERY firearm (and magazines) I own both for reloading, for "upgrades", performance during a match, during classes, at the range, issues, failures etc. I do this so that I don't fool myself into thinking that my gear works when in fact either it doesn't or I'm simply guessing. I know of quite few people who've taken classes, shot in matches or even gone on hunting trips with equipment that is NIB. This is not my idea of "it works"!

taliv
December 13, 2010, 11:44 PM
i believe one of the most common problems with heat is that it increases the chamber pressure and results in popping primers, which get into all sorts of odd places like the gas key or under the trigger.

another problem with heat is that aluminum gas blocks common on DPMS and others expand at a different rate and allow the ports to become misaligned.


But we read time and time again on this forum (and others) how the dgi AR runs 100% reliably when heavily fouled. The anti gas piston crowd is always touting how an AR doesn't need cleaning to run reliably. So which is it?

assuming it is properly built and properly lubed, yeah. but it's not really safe to make either of those assumptions for vast majority of AR15s.

another assumption in that statement is that the "dirt" is actually carbon residue, dust, and sand. however, in classes and matches, you tend to get a lot of unusual foreign objects into the gun that wouldn't show up shooting from a bench. for instance, i shot a match once where mud migrated from my hands to the magazines and from there into the receiver. it built up over 6 stages to the point that in the 7th stage, the action spring didn't have enough oomph to put the bolt into battery.

While I don't clean carbon fouling out of my ARs more than 2/yr, and just pour more lube in, had I been shooting casually, I would have taken the time to clean mud out of my receiver.

taliv
December 13, 2010, 11:48 PM
1858, my experience is nearly identical to bart's: i've spent way too much time standing in a class waiting for some guy to fix his gun so we can continue. and you always hear the same thing, "it never malfunctioned before!"

so either, there is a difference and we can all speculate on why, or there isn't a difference, in which case we can speculate on the correlation of people with broken guns being habitual liars

1858
December 13, 2010, 11:54 PM
taliv, I liked your previous post ... good information.


so either, there is a difference and we can all speculate on why, or there isn't a difference, in which case we can speculate on the correlation of people with broken guns being habitual liars

And there you have it ... luckily you're a moderator so can get away with such a statement. I will say it again, IF your AR mysteriously fails at the start of a class, chances are it wasn't working right to begin with, regardless of how you try to spin it with "it's never happened before" or "I don't know how this could happen". In these situations, the offending individual should be marched out to the 100 yard line and used as a no-shoot target on some challenging drills! Let's see if they'd make the same mistake (or excuses).

taliv
December 14, 2010, 12:00 AM
my apologies if you found that offensive. (being a mod doesn't excuse me in any way from non-THR statements) i thought it was clear, i don't think they're liars, as I believe there's a difference in shooting fast and slow, and in field positions vs a bench.

edit: btw, it's by no means just the guns. that statement applies to all the crap people put on their guns, and expensive guns too, and bolt guns and machine guns and just about everything. i mean, heck, i don't want to veer off topic into camping/hiking gear, but a lot of hiking gear looks like a good idea putzing around with it in the backyard, but you really learn what works and what doesn't when you change altitudes, temperature, etc and when it starts raining, snowing or gets to 100+ degrees.

i've got dang near $8k in a bolt gun that worked flawlessly in a couple F-class matches this year, but I discovered several things that weren't working for me when i went to a class, and the practice this past weekend for the mammoth sniper challenge. it doesn't mean the gun is crap; you expect that sort of thing when someone custom-makes the action and the serial number is double-digits. However some AR15 mfgs have made millions of AR15s and they have known how to fix certain problems for decades and refuse to do so because it's expensive. That's ok, as we all make value decisions every day. Just don't try to convince me one is just as good as the other.

gun addict
December 14, 2010, 12:06 AM
only had a dpms upper once, the front sight was so canted i had to adjust the rear sight ALLLLL the way to the right in order to make it shoot at POA at 50 yards. It was impossible to drive out the front sight pin to correct the problem too so i got rid of it for a massive lost.

Thanks DPMS

1858
December 14, 2010, 12:08 AM
my apologies if you found that offensive. i thought it was clear, i don't think they're liars, as I believe there's a difference in shooting fast and slow, and in field positions vs a bench.

I didn't find it offensive at all since I agree with it. The shooting world is full of inveterate liars with egos to match. My experience has been that the folks that put in the effort do well. Their gear works regardless of the name stamped on it. I know plenty of people with quality gear that seem to struggle and people with run-of-the-mill gear who don't. The difference is due diligence and attention to detail. I know of a pair of individuals that think that money is the answer to everything. They're sure that they're getting beaten every match because they haven't spent enough.

krinko
December 14, 2010, 01:00 AM
"I don't have toys, or pinkers, or anything like that. It is just a different mindset. Any time I have picked up a weapon that wasn't meant for serious use ..."---Aziza

This illustrates the crux of the matter, doesn't it?

So what is "serious use"?
If you're in the Army, you shoot what they give you.
If you're in the Police, you shoot what the department buys---with some exceptions.
Private security?

If you aren't in any of these, how serious is your use?
This is a sincere question, not some snarky trap, by the way.

"It is just a different mindset."

No lie, brother.
-----krinko

ssmlr3
December 14, 2010, 02:39 AM
Just got a DPMS 338federal light hunter 18" barrell. i shot a .567 3 shot group at 8500' 50 or so degrees. I was very impressed. Been shooting at 400 yards lately with it seems not bad.

wriggly
December 14, 2010, 02:56 AM
Why is a military armorer in Iraq working on DPMS rifles? Also, the M4 and M16 use the same extractor. It is the extractor spring and insert that are different. Don't know who your source is; but those strike me as odd parts of his story.



Heat. Heat increases throat erosion, kills spring temper and increases forces on parts in extraction (because higher heat means brass takes longer to obturate).
The gentlemans bio and qualifications......

11B10/USCG GM2, Barrett, Beretta, Colt, Dillon, Glock, FN, KAC, M203, SIG, Remington Armorer, SPR
Current Occupation
IE- with a PMC. Previously with BW and SOC.
Barrett Armorer
Beretta LE Armorer
Colt M16/M4 Armorer
Dillon Aero Armorer
FN M240/249 Armorer
Glock Armorer
Knight's Armament SR-25 Armorer
M203 Armorer
Remington LE Armorer
Sig LE Armorer
Surefire Low-light Instructor

Would you like his email? He is in Afghanistan right now, but he has internet.

Bartholomew Roberts
December 14, 2010, 08:52 AM
. Don't forget about almost twice the chamber pressure in the carbine length gas system. There are two important issues here, not just one.

I think you are confusing chamber pressure with gas port pressure. A hot AR will have a higher chamber pressure; but not twice the pressure. However gas port pressure will be roughly twice as much in a carbine.

kwelz
December 14, 2010, 09:41 AM
"I don't have toys, or pinkers, or anything like that. It is just a different mindset. Any time I have picked up a weapon that wasn't meant for serious use ..."---Aziza

This illustrates the crux of the matter, doesn't it?

So what is "serious use"?
If you're in the Army, you shoot what they give you.
If you're in the Police, you shoot what the department buys---with some exceptions.
Private security?

If you aren't in any of these, how serious is your use?
This is a sincere question, not some snarky trap, by the way.

"It is just a different mindset."

No lie, brother.
-----krinko

I think that is the point I was trying to make.

For me serious use is training in preparation for the time I may have to use one of my weapons to defend myself. It may be a pistol, it may be a rifle, it may even be a shotgun (an area I am lacking both in tool and skill).

Many of the people I train with are LE or Military but many of us are just people who feel part of owning a weapon is knowing how to use it to its fullest potential. At the class I attended this weekend a very important point was brought up.

Every round you fire downrange has a lawyer attached to it. The situation doesn't matter. If you can't use the tools you have properly or if they don't work correctly then you are a danger to those around you as well as yourself.

So to answer your question, my use of these weapons is as serious as anyone who stakes their life on them every day. Not because I am clearing buildings or engaging bad guys at 200 Yards. But because the situation may come up where I need to pull that trigger. If that happens I am taking a life. That is as serious as it gets.

Now a lot of people will say that they only use a gun for hunting, or range use. It is no different however. When you pull that trigger you are sending a chunk of metal somewhere at thousands of feet per second. If you miss then where is it going to go? Will it ricochet? Is whatever is behind your target enough to stop it?

Now what if the gun has a malfunction. What if instead of a single bang, the sear breaks and you get a mag dump? What if the barrel fails and a piece of shrapnel harms someone nearby?

Are any of these scenarios very likely? No of course they are not. However I think we all forget how dangerous these tools we use are. And it is my feeling that we should do everything in our power to minimize the danger to others. That means training to use the weapons properly and effectively, and making sure that my tools are of the highest quality possible.

1858
December 14, 2010, 03:10 PM
I think you are confusing chamber pressure with gas port pressure. A hot AR will have a higher chamber pressure; but not twice the pressure. However gas port pressure will be roughly twice as much in a carbine.

But once the bullet has passed the gas port, aren't the chamber (inside the fired casing), the barrel up to the gas port and the gas port itself all part of the same volume and therefore at the same pressure? The gas port acts as a restriction (expansion valve) right?

Bartholomew Roberts
December 14, 2010, 05:21 PM
OK, I think it was just your use of the term "chamber pressure" that threw me. I got the impression that you were suggesting that the 55,000 psi in the M16A2 was 110,000 psi in the M4.

Instead we were saying the same thing different ways; because the M4 has a shorter barrel (less volume) and extracts 175 microseconds faster, the pressure in the carbine barrel as the bullet passes the gas port is around 30,000 psi (instead of being at around 15,000psi as in the rifle).

Residual chamber pressure in the carbine is probably higher as a result; but I doubt it would be twice as much since the bullet will have left the barrel by the time extraction starts and most of the pressure will exit the muzzle with the bullet.

krinko
December 15, 2010, 12:11 AM
Azizza,
I read it, but am still digesting it and don't really have a reply.

""It is just a different mindset."----this is an enormous understatement.

More later, maybe.
-----krinko

Al Thompson
December 15, 2010, 10:21 AM
I'm not Azizza, but I think I agree with part of his post. I have several dedicated self-defense guns and I shoot them often. If one has a malfunction, I want to know why. If I can't trace the malf to an ammo or magazine issue, I lose confidence in the gun.

One way to have confidence in your firearms is to be an educated consumer and buy the best quality you can afford. Then shoot the heck out of it! :D

X-Rap
December 15, 2010, 12:41 PM
As or if I have parts failure I will be replacing with the best parts I can find. I did find some parts that referred to Mil Std 105D. I will continue to research and hopefully find top quality parts that don't break the bank.
I do honestly believe that the AR crowd is suffering some under the gun of the month syndrome in that each magazine has to come up with an Uber cool gun each month to write about and the makers are more than happy to assemble them with the latest widgits for all to drool over.
I wish some of the better schooled among us could get a sticky together with the best parts available and who makes them. Not some cosmetic fantasy wish list but more more nuts and bolts parts that aren't seen much but mean the most. LPK's, UPK's BCG, charging handles, buffers and springs, gas tubes and blocks the heart of the gun I guess.
The rest can be sorted out by preference IMO.

Skylerbone
December 15, 2010, 02:29 PM
I once asked a well respected member of another forum to share a pic or two of one of his cherished 1911s, preferably his EDC. It was everything I should have expected but I was likely as shocked as many others who expected an over-the-top custom heartstopper. He posted a 20+ year old near bone stock Springfield Armory with IIRC a replacement trigger. Having dozens of others to choose from meant nothing since the Springer had proven reliable time and again much as certain AR manufacturers have.

Some may be shocked at how mundane or pedestrian a "working" AR tends to be.

stanger04
December 15, 2010, 10:22 PM
I have worked on just about every single gun named here and honestly I can say that DPMS is one of the cheapest, that said there will be more of the returned. People trade them in for something else or need the money and sell them. DPMS may have some QC problems but so does Colt, I know I work at a retailer send a gun back to Colt see how long it takes. DPMS is like Savage if it's good it's really good if it's not sell it. Truth is I have an M&P, a Pro. Carbon 15, a Bushmaster patrol, a couple I have built on Sabre lowers, an old (was given to me) Palmetto Arms, and a DPMS lite. The lite shoots just as well as any other one I own, never had a problem with it except the stock, I hate Pardus stocks. As far as mil-spec goes, all manufacterers like to throw that around but almost all have commercial buffer tubes. Personal note mil-spec doesn't always mean great, I can think of a lot of handguns that work better in sand. Mil-spec usual means cheapest we can get and works okay on average, come on we know our government is cheap except on their own raises,lol. Buy what you can afford and upgrade as wanted or needed. I paid $675 for my DPMS it was new and I was gonna change a lot of things so why pay more? I would change the same things even if it was a Bushmaster.

kwelz
December 16, 2010, 09:56 AM
Stanger04, I think you are missing a few points here. They have been covered already so I will give the cliff notes.


I have worked on just about every single gun named here and honestly I can say that DPMS is one of the cheapest, that said there will be more of the returned. People trade them in for something else or need the money and sell them. DPMS may have some QC problems but so does Colt, I know I work at a retailer send a gun back to Colt see how long it takes.
What are these QC problems Colt has? I am not saying they are perfect but I have seen no where near the level of issues out of Colt that I have out of DPMS. Unless of course you mean an imperfect finish when the gun gets to the store. But scratches don't mean anything to me.

DPMS is like Savage if it's good it's really good if it's not sell it.
This makes no sense for a number of reasons. I have never seen a "really good" DPMS. Passable but never good or really good.

Truth is I have an M&P, a Pro. Carbon 15, a Bushmaster patrol, a couple I have built on Sabre lowers, an old (was given to me) Palmetto Arms, and a DPMS lite.

So except for the M&P you don't have a single higher quality gun to compare the DPMS too?



The lite shoots just as well as any other one I own, never had a problem with it except the stock, I hate Pardus stocks.

How much shooting have you done with the DPMS Lite to determine it was "really good"?

As far as mil-spec goes, all manufacterers like to throw that around but almost all have commercial buffer tubes.

You are looking at the wrong manufacturers then. Colt, BCM, DD, Noveske, S&W, Spikes, and many others all use MilSpec tubes. Not only in dimensions but also in how they are made.


Personal note mil-spec doesn't always mean great, I can think of a lot of handguns that work better in sand. Mil-spec usual means cheapest we can get and works okay on average, come on we know our government is cheap except on their own raises,lol.
I don't think you understand the real meaning behind Milspec or the TDP. The military puts out a set of requirements. They are fairly stringent. Companies then bid on that and must prove that they can produce weapons to the specifications required in the TDP. The .Gov has inspectors on hand to constantly check quality and make sure that it is not slipping. Very few companies can produce guns to the quality and in the numbers that the government requires.

If it was just about the lowest Bid then DPMS or bushmaster would have the contract. And we would probably have a lot more dead soldiers.


Buy what you can afford and upgrade as wanted or needed. I paid $675 for my DPMS it was new and I was gonna change a lot of things so why pay more? I would change the same things even if it was a Bushmaster.
Because unless you are upgrading the Barrel, bolt, LPK, Receiver Extension, and a number of other parts, you are still stuck with a gun of questionable quality. And by the time you replace that stuff you are going to spend more than if you had purchased a better gun to start with.


Saying you would have to replace the same things on a Bushmaster isn't helping your case. They are barely a step up and no where near the quality of rifle most would recommend.

FLAvalanche
December 16, 2010, 12:13 PM
I have a DPMS Oracle flat top and I hate it.

I had problems right out of the box. I took it out and everything was black. Just dull black. So I had $650 into the rifle and I had to go and buy a new OD Green stock, magazines, grip and foregrip. Unbeliveable.

Then I took it to the range and the disappointment continued. Once I had it zeroed it continously puts ever round on target at 100 and 200 yards. If it keeps this up I'm sending it back because I'm tired of walking all the way down to the end of the range to put up new targets and don't even get me started on how much money I'm losing on pasties to patch up the holes...

I can't tell you how many magazines I've had to purchase for this thing. Every last one of them empties themselves through the gun. It's a nightmare keeping them full.

You have no idea how much money I've spent on ammo. I've got $60 into a new softsided case with MOLLE pouches on the outside to carry all the stuff you have to carry when you take this piece of crap to the range. Extra ammo, extra targets, extra magazines...

stanger04
December 16, 2010, 01:01 PM
Just because you have never seen something doesn't mean anything. Not trying to be rude but it's a fact. I've never seen God but I think he's great, you gonna say I'm wrong about that too.

DPMS makes a good rifle if they didn't they would be out of business, that's why we have lawyers, they would have been bankrupt.

Colt has put out a lot of junk and people have bout it for the name. Mustang, .22 AR type platform (look at the box, Colt in big letters, made by Walther in tiny letters). A lot of their latter revolvers use soft metals and don't do well with a lot of shooting.

S&W cheap metal problems as well, the 29 in .44 would come apart if shot a lot. They're .22 AR is a joke.

Before you say a word about those are just for plinking why put you're name on junk just to make a dollar and charge almost as must as a standard AR.

All guns are built for a purpose, competition, defense, hunting, target, battle. I don't want to hear a word about mil-spec because the last time I check mil-spec still had selective fire. So none are truly mil-spec.

Offfhand
December 16, 2010, 01:27 PM
After reading all the negative comments about DPMS, (Presumably from experts?) I'm almost in tears. I spent a bunch of money on one in .260 Rem. with 24" barrel, the fancy adjustable stock and a Leupold Mk.4 4.5-14X scope(More big bucks). Should I be ashamed to take it to the range? If I do, what kind of accuracy should I expect? Or will that be another disappointment and more tears?

srkavanagh6621
December 16, 2010, 01:33 PM
This thread really hurt my pride too, I bought a Mark 12 and havent even shot it yet and decided just to put it on sale. Hopefully i dont loose any money on the deal! :( I cant believe so many people dont like DPMS. The gun I have sure feels nice I guess IDK, I got a top of the line DPMS would that make a difference?

kwelz
December 16, 2010, 01:37 PM
Just because you have never seen something doesn't mean anything. Not trying to be rude but it's a fact. I've never seen God but I think he's great, you gonna say I'm wrong about that too.

Actually I am an atheist so...

DPMS makes a good rifle if they didn't they would be out of business, that's why we have lawyers, they would have been bankrupt.

Not true at all. You can make sub par products and stay in business just fine. Marketing and lack of a knowledgeable buyer can overcome a lot of things.

Colt has put out a lot of junk and people have bout it for the name. Mustang, .22 AR type platform (look at the box, Colt in big letters, made by Walther in tiny letters). A lot of their latter revolvers use soft metals and don't do well with a lot of shooting.

Not disagreeing at all. But we are talking about the AR platform here.

Oh and by the way Cold didn't make those .22 Rifles. Umarex did. And they are complete crap.

S&W cheap metal problems as well, the 29 in .44 would come apart if shot a lot. They're .22 AR is a joke.

Actually their .22 AR is considered pretty good.

Before you say a word about those are just for plinking why put you're name on junk just to make a dollar and charge almost as must as a standard AR.
I will decide when I want to speak and don't want to speak thank you very much.

They cost no where near as much as a standard AR. Unless you are buying a stripped down second rate AR you are going to spend near a grand. Even a DPMS AP4 is going to run you in that range. Those .22 rifles are under 500.


All guns are built for a purpose, competition, defense, hunting, target, battle. I don't want to hear a word about mil-spec because the last time I check mil-spec still had selective fire. So none are truly mil-spec.

You seem to like dictating when people can and can not speak. I think you will find that doesn't go over well with adults.

Yes Select fire is something you can not get on an AR (without a lot of money and hassle. But your argument seems to be that since you can't get that one feature, that none of the others matter. This is a fallacy.

There is no excuse for these companies to cut the corners they do. There was a time not long ago when they could get away with it because the market was so barren. That is why they are still around. However with new companies like BCM, Spikes and DD on the market companies like DPMS and bushmaster are going to have to stop slacking off and start putting out a good product or they will be in trouble.

kwelz
December 16, 2010, 01:44 PM
Guys, before you go selling your guns think about this.
What is your intended purpose?
Have you shot the gun to see if it functions?
Will you be using the gun in a life or death situation?
Will you be running the gun hard?

There are things you can do to the guns to make them more reliable.
I suggest you read this thread before you do anything.
"Oh No! I bought a BM/RRA/Stag before I knew better!" (http://m4carbine.net/showthread.php?p=75568#post75568)

Fish Miner
December 16, 2010, 01:59 PM
Mr. Azziza seems to be one who knows what he is talking about I guess, but I would not chuck my DPMS nor be ashamed to show up at the range with it because of this thread.

If I woke up tomorrow in a Red Dawn scenario with zombies attacking me from all sides while the ice caps melting and the water rising.... I would not even hesitate to grab my DPMS. Is Mr. Azziza going to have less malfunctions or broken parts or whatever? Who knows? All I know is my DPMS has never had a hiccup so I won't worry about it. I will be chucking lead along with 50 Million other Americans... Take that zombies.

Skylerbone
December 16, 2010, 02:15 PM
I'm not an atheist but I do believe in Azizza (sorry I keep mentioning you but in all fairness you are in the room;-). While I haven't sold my Rock River (again, it does what I bought it for) I won't be reaching for it as a primary SD/HD weapon either UNLESS that is what is at hand.

Put wounded pride aside for a moment and consider what has been stated thus far:

There are more reliable brands than DPMS.

These brand aren't necessarily more expensive than DPMS.

There is no 100% reliable firearm available, but the odds are on several brands other than DPMS for when it has to work.

DPMS may be fine for YOUR purposes but again, there may be better quality available at or near it's price point.

Keep what you have, replace what breaks with quality parts and buy AFTER research if you're in the market for an AR.

kwelz
December 16, 2010, 02:26 PM
MWAHAHAHA. I have my first Acolyte. My plans for world domination are shaping up nicely!

Seriously though, Skylerbone put it well. None of this is an attack on any person. I am trying to put the facts out there, use them as you wish. It doesn't effect my life in the least if you agree with me or not.

I wasted a lot of money on junk. Safe queens that I never shot and were more for wang waving(can I say that here?) than actual use. I have gotten rid of the junk and now have useful tools, many of which also look pretty dang cool. :D

Mags
December 16, 2010, 04:00 PM
After reading all the negative comments about DPMS, (Presumably from experts?) I'm almost in tears. I spent a bunch of money on one in .260 Rem. with 24" barrel, the fancy adjustable stock and a Leupold Mk.4 4.5-14X scope(More big bucks). Should I be ashamed to take it to the range? If I do, what kind of accuracy should I expect? Or will that be another disappointment and more tears? Did you even read anything? The 260 Rem is a niche rifle and DPMS makes fine target/hunting rifles.

Horvath819
December 16, 2010, 04:51 PM
I'm sending my DPMS Oracle back. What else can I get that's better for about the same price?

Mags
December 16, 2010, 04:52 PM
How much are Oracles? Spikes and S&W go from 7-900 bucks.

What I do when I am strapped and want an AR is I buy a cheap AR and then replace the BCG, CH, buffer, stocks, grips, handguards and springs slowly overtime. I end up paying more in the long run than I would for a tier 1 or better AR but the money is spread out over time with 100 bucks here and there making it unnoticable all the while I still have an AR.

Horvath819
December 16, 2010, 04:55 PM
it was like $630

kwelz
December 16, 2010, 05:13 PM
Smartgunner DD deal will run you a bit more than that but not much if you do it right.

Upper with Bolt and rail will run you about 650 and you can build or buy a lower cheap.

FlyinBryan
December 16, 2010, 05:28 PM
There was a time not long ago when they could get away with it because the market was so barren.

funny thing about that is i believe each company made a better rifle 10 years ago. (or at least from my examples im pretty sure bushmaster did.

(for example they have shrouded firing pins, properly staked gas keys, 5 coil extractor springs with black inserts, and staked castle nuts,,,,, actually the castlenuts are not staked, but a little flat plate next to the castlenut is staked, pushing material over into one of the notches of the castlenut, so i dont actually know if this is proper or not)

i dont think ive actually seen it, but as everyone says, this is not the case with the bushmasters you find today.

one odd thing about mine is they were built at some point during the awb, but not in compliance, so i dont know what the deal is with that.

Joe Demko
December 16, 2010, 05:30 PM
"Serious use."

I'm just frivolous, perhaps. Or maybe my lifestyle is different from the rest of you. It is not a thing of immediate and debilitating concern to me if one of the various semi-automatic rifles I own might fail three fourths of the way through a 1,000 shot string. I don't carry one of those rifles to work with me. I don't keep one loaded at my side while I am cooking dinner. We're pretty short on feral ghouls, raiders, Enclave, and Brotherhood Outcasts around here, lately.
I understand wanting "the best" (whatever that is, and it differs by what your purpose is) for its own sake. All the same, I wouldn't go getting all verklempt because some guys on the internet say your rifle isn't good enough for them.
Another member of this site, who shouldn't go getting a bloated ego, is fond of stating that 99% of the AR's sold are good enough for 99% of shooters. If you are one of the 1%, you aren't here asking for advice or approval. I figure he's right.

FlyinBryan
December 16, 2010, 05:37 PM
"Serious use."

I'm just frivolous, perhaps. Or maybe my lifestyle is different from the rest of you. It is not a thing of immediate and debilitating concern to me if one of the various semi-automatic rifles I own might fail three fourths of the way through a 1,000 shot string. I don't carry one of those rifles to work with me. I don't keep one loaded at my side while I am cooking dinner. We're pretty short on feral ghouls, raiders, Enclave, and Brotherhood Outcasts around here, lately.
I understand wanting "the best" (whatever that is, and it differs by what your purpose is) for its own sake. All the same, I wouldn't go getting all verklempt because some guys on the internet say your rifle isn't good enough for them.
Another member of this site, who shouldn't go getting a bloated ego, is fond of stating that 99% of the AR's sold are good enough for 99% of shooters. If you are one of the 1%, you aren't here asking for advice or approval. I figure he's right.

flyinbryan "likes" this

stanger04
December 16, 2010, 08:53 PM
Walther makes Colt's .22 AR type rifles and so Colt still felt the need to put their name on them, so they are still junk Colts.

S&W .22 AR's are not good guns, the faux buffer tube is easy to break and then the gun is useless.

These are still AR type rifles as each company markets them that way. Point is I'm not saying an just because one thing isn't mil-spec throw it out, all I'm saying is that when you want to say top tier guns are mil-spec while others are not is not a factual statement.

If you want to say an M&P is an upper tier gun compared to DPMS you are wrong, both guns are equal, you really need to read the basic package and options available literature.

The only point I'm trying to make is all manufacturers have had bad gun models and/or problems. If DPMS was doing things almost dangerously wrong then yes they would be out of business, same reason K-Mart quit selling guns, it helped them beat out paperwork errors that were going to cause enormous fines.

It's weird too that a buddy of mine has a Spikes lower yet it is full of DPMS parts, obviously there is some misinformation somewhere about mil-spec.

The only gun I could really say is over priced for what it is is the Ruger 556. It is a nice gun and shoots very well but for that price there are more options.

I think if a man decides he wants to buy a cheap AR to start with and only wants to spend between 5 and 6 hundred dollars, a DPMS is not a bad choice. What other gun can you get for that price new and I don't mean a couple hundred more but that exact price.

A starter to AR's should really buy new and know what is in the gun, they are already learning and when buying used they don't know what the previous owner may or may not have done to the gun.

I think it's great that somebody chooses to buy an AR, it keeps the area growing with shooters, designers, and after market manufacturers. There are enough people trying to get rid of them, the last thing needed is someone to go around telling a bunch of people they own crap, just because they haven't seen something or know something.

I work with a lot of "gun salesmen" most of them don't know crap except for a few guns. Salesmen bull a lot problem is when they do it too long they actually think what they say is true all the time.

Show some numbers on sales, returns, and failure rates before a gun is knocked, that is fact, saying you saw something isn't.

kwelz
December 16, 2010, 09:15 PM
Walther makes Colt's .22 AR type rifles and so Colt still felt the need to put their name on them, so they are still junk Colts.

While a monstrous marketing snafu by colt it still isn't in any way indicative of the Quality of Colt manufactured firearms.


S&W .22 AR's are not good guns, the faux buffer tube is easy to break and then the gun is useless.

I have never seen a single case of this or hear about it. Examples please.

These are still AR type rifles as each company markets them that way. Point is I'm not saying an just because one thing isn't mil-spec throw it out, all I'm saying is that when you want to say top tier guns are mil-spec while others are not is not a factual statement.

They are AR type rifles not ARs. Neither in any way claims to be close the the TDP and one isn't even made by the company that has the name on it.

If you want to say an M&P is an upper tier gun compared to DPMS you are wrong, both guns are equal, you really need to read the basic package and options available literature.

Care to back that up with ANY actual information? Stock DPMS rifles do not use M4 Feedramps, they don't have a chrome lined chamber and bore, Do not have proper specced chambers. The list goes on. Smith still has a few shortcomings but no where near the number that DPMS have.

The only point I'm trying to make is all manufacturers have had bad gun models and/or problems. If DPMS was doing things almost dangerously wrong then yes they would be out of business, same reason K-Mart quit selling guns, it helped them beat out paperwork errors that were going to cause enormous fines.

I am not talking about JUST specific models. I am talking about a pattern of cutting corners and not taking even the most basic steps to put out a quality product.


It's weird too that a buddy of mine has a Spikes lower yet it is full of DPMS parts, obviously there is some misinformation somewhere about mil-spec.

What are you saying? He purchased a Spikes Lower and put in a DPMS LPK? What is your point. Just because they will fit doesn't mean they are good quality.

The only gun I could really say is over priced for what it is is the Ruger 556. It is a nice gun and shoots very well but for that price there are more options.


On this we agree. It is overpriced and pointless for the market.

I think if a man decides he wants to buy a cheap AR to start with and only wants to spend between 5 and 6 hundred dollars, a DPMS is not a bad choice. What other gun can you get for that price new and I don't mean a couple hundred more but that exact price.

Nobody said otherwise. But some people, yourself included, seem to think that 600 dollar DPMS is going to perform just as well as a 900 BCM or DD. This isn't the case and by telling people this you are doing them a disservice.

A starter to AR's should really buy new and know what is in the gun, they are already learning and when buying used they don't know what the previous owner may or may not have done to the gun.

Good point. But they also should not buy cheap and then have all the issues that go along with it. It will turn people off to the platform and is mostly why people have this misconception about ARs being unreliable.

I think it's great that somebody chooses to buy an AR, it keeps the area growing with shooters, designers, and after market manufacturers. There are enough people trying to get rid of them, the last thing needed is someone to go around telling a bunch of people they own crap, just because they haven't seen something or know something.

You seem to be implying that knowledge is a bad thing. I can't say I agree with that. I am not going to tell someone who purchased a DPMS or bushmaster, or stag, or whatever, that they did well just to save their feelings.

I work with a lot of "gun salesmen" most of them don't know crap except for a few guns. Salesmen bull a lot problem is when they do it too long they actually think what they say is true all the time.

Show some numbers on sales, returns, and failure rates before a gun is knocked, that is fact, saying you saw something isn't.

I don't have access to the number of returns, etc when from where I used to work. but why don't you go ask some instructors how many second rate guns they have seen fail in class. It happens all the time.


Since you seem to feel the need to question everything I have said I feel it is my turn. What are your qualifications? How many of these do you own. What brads do you now or have yo owned in the past? Are you a dealer? A manufacturer? How many training classes have you been to? Which ones?

So far you have only posted in this thread. I can only assume you registered just for that purpose but have yet to show any actual knowledge on the subject. .

FlyinBryan
December 16, 2010, 10:03 PM
You seem to be implying that knowledge is a bad thing. I can't say I agree with that. I am not going to tell someone who purchased a DPMS or bushmaster, or stag, or whatever, that they did well just to save their feelings.

knowledge is not a bad thing, but its not a free pass for inappropriate skepticism.

you have said yourself that 99% of the ar's are fine for 99% of,,,,,,,,,,,,,well, you know.

me being in good physical condition is not a license to call others fat, based on the fact that i'm right.

there is a way to do it, and then there is that other way.

TexasPatriot.308
December 16, 2010, 10:07 PM
good stuff

stanger04
December 16, 2010, 10:25 PM
I have been to quite a few armor's schools for different manufacturers, I have a few AR's and listed what I own already. I have owned a Colt is the past, it was okay but not something I ever fell in love with. I work for a dealer/distributor as a gunsmith.

I have seen 2 M&P .22's with broken or cracked stocks and as far as Colt goes, I feel if you are putting your name on it, it's your good or bad. If they will sign their name to junk what else will they do or not do.

I never once said a basic DPMS is a $1000 dollar rifle or as good, goes to my point of guns built for a purpose. DPMS isn't my favorite gun either, I like Spikes lowers but I get a better price on Sabre's ($65 a piece and no FFL fees) so I use them when I build. I like Colt LE carriers because they have more meat on bottom which goes back to the select fire control, even though I'll never need it.

I guess what I'm saying for a defense rifle that gets shot enough times a year to know how to shoot DPMS is good for the money and take the rest and stock up on ammo.

We have a NRA class where I work and is taught by a range master, who is also retired military and an active officer. His son's both own DPMS he bought them for them as starters and he owns a DPMS, Bushmaster, Colt, and a few custom built guns. He is the one who told me about the gun in the shop I bought. His point and I agree with him is "It's cheap, fun to shoot, and if I beat it up I don't feel so bad because I don't have a couple of grand in it".

As far as what I have built I some change in one and only target shoot with it at home, don't like to take it out to range or woods, as I don't want to beat it up. I guess you can call it a show pony.

I agree there are a lot of better guns than DPMS but there are worse, I think you know that as well as I do. DPMS has faults but I think they do offer a decent platform to build on for someone that wants a high dollar gun but can't afford one. It gives them a gun to shoot while they can order parts and wait to build and by then depending on what they want they could have well over 1K in it.

I still believe I'd rather have a little less and never need it than, have a $1000 gun sitting in lay-a-way while I'm being robbed. There are a lot of people that only have $500-$600 and for that price DPMS isn't a bad chioce.

I know a few people with Olympics, is it exactly what they wanted no, but it was all they could afford and they wanted an AR. If they banned the sale of them tomorrow at least they still have an AR, not a great one but an AR none the less.

-v-
December 16, 2010, 11:11 PM
"Serious use."
I don't keep one loaded at my side while I am cooking dinner. We're pretty short on feral ghouls, raiders, Enclave, and Brotherhood Outcasts around here, lately.
I also approve of this, but don't forget them damn Fiends and Caesar's Legion too..

I would chime in too, that there is the "best" and then there is the good enough. The point being that most people will gain 80% utility from 20% of the capacity of a product. The Good Enough Revolution (http://www.wired.com/gadgets/miscellaneous/magazine/17-09/ff_goodenough?currentPage=3)

From a mechanical standpoint, is an LMT or a LWRC a superior weapon to a DPMS of CMMG Bargain bin? Undeniably. But, best has many facets, and one of them is "best that you can afford". As you say, for $200 more, you can have a better rifle. But, for some people, another $200 might be hard to scrape together, or someone might choose to spend that $200 on ammunition and practice. As all defensive firearms go, its not the sheer mechanical wizardry of the rifle that will make a rifle effective when someone breaks into your home, its your profficency with that rifle. In that respect, a lesser gun with more practice will serve someone much better then a better gun with no practice.

As Azizza said (I think), for light to moderate use, most users will never notice the mechanical shortcomings of a lower tier AR. My guess is most defensive shootings don't involve 3-5 consecutive magazine dumps, while rolling around in the dirt for a few days. So, for most scenarios, 99.9% of the time a DPMS will do everything that a LWRC will, for 1/3 the cost. If you go to a class, or a war-zone and intentionally run your gun hard, you will see its shortcomings, but most (re: 99%) of AR's will never be run that hard. Hard use is a niche market and ARs that can take that and ask for more are a niche product.

Do I have a DPMS? Yes, their LR308B. Does it serve all my needs from HD to plinking to hunting, to gun games? It does, and it has yet to miss a step. Is it the best? No, but it certainly is "good enough." as Mikhail Kalashnikov famously said, the best is the enemy of the good.

Skylerbone
December 16, 2010, 11:47 PM
With all due respect, the majority here seem to be in agreement about the facts but the OP asked for past experiences with DPMS, whether they were a budget rifle, looked cheap and what people thought of them. He did not ask if we thought he could afford better or should buy one and save money for a better rifle later.

Had I battled it out here a year ago I would likely have opted to stick with my first choice (Armalite) and never bought my Rock River. Am I satisfied with my purchase? Yes. Could I have had a better rifle for the near $1,100 I spent? Pretty darn likely. I've learned more than I knew and I'll take knowledge over ego any day but Tuesday. Besides, on range day I still get guys walking over to drool over my RRA 'cause advertising really does work and it really is that accurate even for a short barrel.

I do hope no one is offended by what is discussed here, it seems though the original question is a bit too vague to be answered with a thumbs up/down. Perhaps someone here might repost as a poll??? "Which brand would you buy for $XXXX?".

X-Rap
December 17, 2010, 12:19 AM
To put this into perspective I would like to say I would rather have a Sportical and Pmags than any high speed Mini 14 with the after market mags of your choice if the SHTF.
Anybody disagree?

Hani Pasha
December 17, 2010, 12:25 AM
The take away message from this thread for me thus far seems to be that no one has anything to say about DPMS quality in general. Mr. Azizza seems to have no problem accepting that some of DPMS's pieces for hunting/varminteering are decent products... most of the harsher criticism seems to be leveled at the entry-level 5.56 models.

Perhaps this discussion would be even more helpful if we were to consider what a good "entry-level" AR is, and who makes them for good prices.

krinko
December 17, 2010, 12:32 AM
Joe Demko,
Yes and yes, again. Well said.
-----krinko

will919
December 17, 2010, 03:41 AM
I have a "DPMS" its been accurate and reliable.

THE END.

mljdeckard
December 17, 2010, 04:15 AM
Joe said verklempt. :D

againstthagrane
December 17, 2010, 05:37 AM
Oh, good. I'm in time for the monthly DPMS bashfest.

srkavanagh6621
December 17, 2010, 09:01 AM
So I take back what I said earlier, I decided to take the DPMS out and give it a little range visit! Im not a guy who is giong to go through thousand and thousand of rounds but wow was that thing accurate! The mark 12 consistently shot less than 1/2 MOA with cheap 55 grain FMJ! WOW! It shot just amazing! The finish isnt as nice as some AR but if you want a shooter for your occasional Coyote gun, I dont think you will find somthing that shoots better! Amazing, after saying that I have already started saving my pennies for a POF-415 for a little bit different purpose in mind. I think the DPMS will be more than adequate for hunting varmints! great gun, so some of you DPMS haters they have a place, accuracy!

SpeedAKL
December 17, 2010, 10:37 AM
Keep in mind that the truth lies between "DPMS Sucks" and "DPMS is just as good as a Colt or DD as a combat rifle". Unless you plan on using the gun primarily for HD or high-round-count activities like training or 3gun, there is little need to sell your DPMS. As precision or varmint guns they are actually quite a good value.

33-805
December 17, 2010, 10:51 AM
just one personal experience with one DPMS rifle. I went back and read the original post, and this seems to be the sort of anecdotal experience requested.

The DPMS AR I had was not acceptable, it had a history of never once finishing a 30 round mag with zero malfunctions. The mags used were proven on my other ARs, so that and the ammo used were eliminated as causes. I have not often seen such a collection of types of malfunctions in one firearm before. It had all the bad habits. The finish also began peeling off in sheets from the barrel and one side of the receiver. It looked like bad oven paint. One of the poorer firearm buying experiences I ever had, so I guess I am lucky not to have had too many like this.

The place I ordered it from was standup about it, and took it back for a refund, so all worked out well. So, my single experience was bad. Could I have gotten a lemon? I am sure I could have, but I will not purchase from them again.

X-Rap
December 17, 2010, 11:10 AM
Unless you plan on using the gun primarily for HD or high-round-count activities like training or 3gun, there is little need to sell your DPMS.
I really don't follow the logic on the HD, people are using quite an assortment of weapons with success in home defense. Are we now to believe that you need a LaRue for HD?
I say that even in a training scenario, if you have shot the gun and put it through the paces and it works then it is OK. Don't take junk and screw up other peoples time that they have payed for but if your gun shoots and holds up then don't be ashamed to use it.

1858
December 17, 2010, 02:55 PM
The mark 12 consistently shot less than 1/2 MOA with cheap 55 grain FMJ! WOW!

My DPMS upper (24" heavy stainless fluted barrel with 1:8 twist) on a BM lower will consistently shoot in the .4s at 100 yards (five shot groups) but that's with my reloads using a 77gr SMK and 25.0gr or Varget. With XM193 it won't do any better than 1.5" at 100 yards (combat accuracy) so I don't know how you manage to shoot sub 0.5 MOA with "cheap 55 grain FMJ".

Skylerbone
December 17, 2010, 11:20 PM
To the nearest Mod. in the words of Flash Gordon; "End it now!"

Horvath819
December 18, 2010, 12:23 AM
Well I'm getting my DPMS Oracle AR .223/5.56 on Monday. I was going to send it back, but I think I've decided to keep it and take my chances :uhoh:.

Redlg155
December 18, 2010, 10:13 AM
I find it quite quite humorous the we put so much emphasis on materials and specialty testing when deciding on the potential quality and durability of an AR15, yet we don't require the same standards for our handguns and shotguns.

Shoot your AR15, and if you find it reliable, use it for whatever purpose you deem necessary. For those "operators" and contractors who need the extra reliability and firepower, you should also have the channels to supply you with a selective fire weapon.

Some folks who own a DPMS choose to do so due to price relative to function and purpose. If your rifle takes a crap on you after a couple of mags fired rapidly, you need a new rifle, no matter what the brand.

Mxracer239y
December 18, 2010, 11:02 AM
One experience certainly does not define a company. That being said, my LRT-SASS has been awesome from day one. I would buy from DPMS again in a second.

I caution against glorifying 'military spec.' I have only worked in the defense industry a short time, but general consensus seems to be that meeting those specifications is a giant pain-in-the-arse. A company putting out a questionable product may be forced to raise quality levels to meet said specifications. If a manufacturer is already putting out quality product using alternative materials/methods/testing procedures, these additional tests and procedures can be a waste of time and resources.

stanger04
December 18, 2010, 02:07 PM
I agree 100% mil-spec and tactical are thrown around way too much. There are better things than mil-spec and worse things as well.

Look a pistols, I would rather have a more simplistic design as there are less parts to break. In the long run (example only not hocking one over the other) Glocks have been more reliable than the M9 and the 1911 plus more soldier proof. All are good guns but some require more work to keep optimum than others, plus the more parts to take out and clean more of a chance of losing something. Nothing against any military members but you guys know as well as I do if not better what people I'm talking about.

Go back to Stoner's focus on the M16 it had to be a good gun but it also had to be soldier proof. Remember when it first came out, it came with no cleaning kits, our powers that be said it never had to be cleaned. It was a disaster at first but that's mil-spec sometimes.

I'd side tracked this thread some and sorry, the best answer is you get what you pay for, DPMS covers entry and up as well as most other companies. You need to decide you uses for the gun and then look at the limitations of the guns you're interested in and of course as with most of us, the limitations of your bank account,lol.

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