Opinions on Bear creek uppers

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by kBob, Jul 10, 2019.

  1. kBob

    kBob Member

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    I am looking at a Bear Creek 7.62x39 upper in 16 inch standard carbine format.

    Anyone have experience with such?

    what is the wait time/delivery wait on Bear Creek Arsenal uppers?

    What Magazine works best with these in a standard AR 15 lower?

    If necessary will this upper (as the old Colt originals) feed from very short loaded standard magazines?

    -kBob
     
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  2. someguy2800

    someguy2800 Member

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    I have several bear creek side charging uppers but no experience with their complete uppers.

    The concensus is that C products and ASC mags are the best. I use 10 round C products mags and they function flawlessly.

    You can get a round or two in a standard 223 AR mag and it will function, I tried it with mine. Anything more than like 2 or 3 rounds though and they jam up.
     
  3. greyling22

    greyling22 Member

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    my 2 side chargers work fine. My buddy has a side charger in 223 that the charging handle broke off from the force of the bolt cycling. (suppressed sbr with no adjustable gas block) and my handle has loosened before. Now I use more loctite.....

    as I recall, it took about 10 days form order to delivery.
     
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  4. kBob

    kBob Member

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    Thanks Greyling

    I may have asked before and forgotten but does your handle have anything to do with Bear Archery?

    -kBob
     
  5. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    Bear was originally in Grayling, so if it does, the spelling is a little off.
     
  6. troy fairweather

    troy fairweather Member

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    there good for the money, all there barrels 14'' and longer have a 1 moa guarantee.
     
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  7. illinoisburt

    illinoisburt Member

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    I bought BCA complete upper and have recommended them to a number of other people. All of them that I have seen and handled were built well and customer service shipping time was very good. There are some people on the internet who don't speak very highly of the company in general but the consensus seems to be that their barrels are very good for the price point.
     
  8. greyling22

    greyling22 Member

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    I have nothing to do with bear archery, and bows and I generally do not get along well. I blame my pathetic upper body strength and poor technique, but I have a suspicion that the gods of archery (was that Artemis and/or Apollo?) Have it out for me.
     
  9. spazzy

    spazzy Member

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    I have this bear creek arsenal 7.62x39 upper mated to a PSA lower

    https://www.bearcreekarsenal.com/bca-ar-15-complete-upper-assembly-16-parkerized-heavy-barrel-7-62x39-carbine-length-gas-system-w-15-mlok-rail

    I like it a lot, it's my cheap blasting centerfire and rainy day deer rifle. Accuracy is better than I expected and all 200ish rounds so far have been flawless through it.

    I use ASC 20 and 10 round magazines and all of them so far have worked great.

    I do believe you can load a small amount (2-4) rounds of 7.62x39 in a standard 5.56 magazine before the taper of the cartridge case binds the magazine up and causes issues but I never tried, I just ordered the correct mags and have always used them.

    I would highly recommend getting a 7.62 AR, they are fun!
     
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  10. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    I have 4 complete uppers from them. Two 16” 7.62x39, 24” 5.56, and an 18” 450BM. All have been great. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve recommended them to others, I’d have a lot of dollars. I use the C products 10rd magazines. No failures to cycle. And accuracy has been fantastic. Even with cheap Wolf ammo.

    Time to my door has never been more than 5 business days. In 7.62x39 I have the HBAR 16” A2 style and the 16” HBAR straight fluted style. You cannot beat the price. And like Troy said anything with a 16” (actually) barrel has a MOA guarantee and lifetime warranty. Give them a try. I’m very happy I did.
     

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  11. lsudave

    lsudave Member

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    Late to this party, sorry :)

    I've been into firearms awhile, but didn't get an AR until last summer. A Radical Firearms 16" 5.56 setup. I've had SKS's since the Clinton years, so I had a lot of 7.62 gathered up. Got the hankering for a 7.62 AR, so I got the same upper spazzy listed (I'm a bit apprehensive about how much more I paid than he did, but that's life...).

    My experience has been fairly decent, with a little growing pains frustration added in.
    I cleaned and lubed it when it came in, popped it on the RA lower (no issues there) and took it to the range, with Wolf and Barnaul. Seems I sheared the extractor on the first shot, as it hung up a bit (I guess that was the broken bit getting caught up). After freeing it up, I went through about 15 more rounds, zero extraction but 100% shoot. I'd shake out the case sideways. Took it home and looked it over, there's still the faintest lip on the extractor, but it would never grab. Smooth, but white, so I figured out what had happened. Contacted BCA, but have yet to hear back from them. Looked around for suggestions, and saw others say regular extractors seem to work fine (although others say use the "correct one", which was more expensive and out of stock when I looked). Got some cheap 5.56 extractors in, gave it a test run, extracts perfectly. With the firing pin that came with it, 100% with Barnaul and about 70% with Wolf, so I picked up an enhanced pin from Red X. Haven't taken it back out since then. I've had to tighten the fore grip down, as it started rattling... this is under 40 rds in.

    I don't regret the purchase, I just wish it would have been a bit smoother start. I've got some C Product 10 rd mags, and that seems fine. Accuracy has been acceptable, haven't yet been able to stretch it out to even 100 yds. I certainly see the potential for this, if I can get it running right. At some point I will get a dedicated lower, but for now I'm fine with it as-is. I thought about getting a side-charger, but decided to stick with the default layout, which upon reading of the issues, I'm glad I did.
     
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  12. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

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    I recently built one with the same upper spazzy linked to, but with the 12" rail rather than the 15". I got what was in stock at the time. Would like the longer rail, but don't feel bad. Mated to a basic Anderson lower, and then Magpul all around for the bells and whistles. Not a fanboy, just a happy cost/quality analysis and I decided I actually wanted colors to match.
    It's heavier than I expected. Don't know if that's because of the billet upper, but probably from the heavy barrel and aluminum handguard. Plus it's been a long time since I've handled an AR, and those were bog-standard 5.56 ones.
    Haven't gotten to shoot it yet. But everything is tight and smooth. The only burr is on the inside of the handguard at the front, and it pretty much lacks machining marks.
    When I got it, the insides were just drenched in oil. Probably for preservative purposes and on the premise that "you can't overlube an AR." I still cleaned it out and relubed.
    My one complaint is that the dust cover isn't particularly tight. Small problem, I'd switch it out, but the design of the billet upper means I can't extract the rod from the rear. I'd have to take the barrel nut off. I don't currently have a workbench, so that's not happening.

    It took a couple weeks. They're backed up from demand. Wasn't bad.
    Haven't got the chance to get to the range yet, but function tests with AR Stoner magazines in 30 and 10 rounds haven't had any issues yet. They don't feel the best, but if they work...
    I've got another couple AR Stoners and a few C Products mags en route now. Grabbing what I can get without terribly inflated pricing.
    I also got a Barrier Defense enhanced firing pin; they're the same length but it protrudes slightly further. The stock one may be OEM style. Will be testing that before switching, and I'll have a spare. Also keeping an eye out for extractors and a bolt, but those are hard to come by right now. A little leery about the thin walls and locking lugs because I was an AK guy.
     
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  13. Bartojc

    Bartojc Member

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    I have a side charging 18" barreled upper in .450 Bushmaster. I've only had it out once (ammo availability). It seems well built and finished for what it is, an economy upper. For hunting or for fun they should do well. Accuracy on mine was good. I had/have a feed issue, no uncommon in .450 BM. I think its the mag feed lips. I think I have it figured out.

    -Jeff
     
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  14. TN Outlaw

    TN Outlaw Member

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    I have 3 BCA complete uppers.

    16" side charging 7.62x39
    16" 223 Wylde
    10.5" 300Blk

    All came in within 5-6 business days of ordering. All have been surprisingly accurate and we'll built. They have functioned flawlessly except for the x39. I have some old China Sport steel cased FMJ's and the firing pin doesn't seem to strike hard enough to set them off reliably. Other than that, all other ammo I've tried does well but I've only put 50-60 rounds through it.

    I use ASC 30's and C products 10's and have had no issues with cycling thus far. I'd definitely recommend BCA uppers.
     
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  15. Mk-211

    Mk-211 Member

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    BCA has come a long way, had some growing pains at one time. They are now becoming a top notch company and sell good products.

    I've had a number of their products including their side charging uppers. Definitely one of the neatest uppers on the market and never had any trouble with mine.

    This part may not matter to some but it does to others. They have been giving away barrels to vets on veterans day every year! Everyone that has received a barrel and built an upper, say that the barrel does well and has good accuracy. Built an upper for my wife using one of these barrels and my experience is the same as others.

    I would buy from them any day of the week, if they keep doing what they're doing PSA will be in trouble.
     
  16. lsudave

    lsudave Member

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    Going forward, I am going to watch 3 things:
    1. how does that standard 5.56 stand up on the 7.62 bolt? The one I got cost less than $10, so I picked up a few. I KNOW I can use them as spares on the 5.56, will it last with the larger case? If it doesn't break, it's functioning perfectly with cheap steel ammo (the only 7.62 I have). It's half the price of the cheapest 7.62 extractor I could find (out of stock), and about a third of the price of the cheapest one I could find in stock. I figure that means I should hope for lasting about half as long, to break even (and that's not taking into account the fact that the 'correct one' actually busted on the first shot).
    2. C Product 10 rd mags have been great with minimal testing so far. No fail to feed yet, but I figure 1-2 full mags, and a few with 3-5 isn't quite the stress test I need to confirm.
    3. Enhanced firing pin, it seems like it will strike deeper, but haven't tested it yet. The failure to fire on the Wolf sure didn't look like a light strike, but then again I never had any issues with the SKS with that. Next time, I'm bringing both rifles, the SKS just in case I get more failure to fire.
    My goal is to make a cheap, reliable blaster, to shoot the cheapest blaster ammo available. Accuracy would be nice, but I want reliable first (haven't even zeroed the sights yet).
     
  17. lsudave

    lsudave Member

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    Just a brief update- the enhanced firing pin seems to have done the job, chews through steel just fine; and so far no troubles with the extractor. BCA did finally respond to me and sent another out, but for now I will leave the 5.56 one on it (hey, it seems to be working).
    The gun seems accurate enough, I need to acclimate to the AR platform to really tell. I picked up a complete lower from KG, was cheap enough and seems to do fine for my needs.
     
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  18. berettaprofessor

    berettaprofessor Member

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    I just ordered the 16" side charger Type II on Wednesday. Shipped the morning after I ordered it, was supposed to be delivered by FedEx yesterday, now updated to come today. It will be my fourth BCA complete upper, to join a Valkyrie, 450Bush, and side charging 223 (earlier version). I've had no trouble with any of the others; function flawlessly. The Valkyrie was picky for load but I finally found a load that was accurate (80 and 88 grain ELDs).
     
  19. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    I have experience with several BCA uppers (handled, shot, disassembled, serviced, etc). They aren't fancy, expensive, or luxurious; they are an outstanding value.

    The only issue I've ever personally witnessed was an extractor hook (MIM) that departed the weapon on the first shot. My spare fixed it, and I had BCA's replacement in hand the next week. I accept this as normal at this price point; I'd have been annoyed in a Noveske or Wilson for 5-10x the price.
     
  20. wesmonster

    wesmonster Member

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    I bought a 20” stainless 6.5 Grendel AR upper from Bear Creek Arsenal a few years ago, no issues, great groupings even with cheap steel case ammo. Ship time was fast but that was way before the panic.

    For a 7.62x39 AR upper, an enhanced firing pin is a must, and they’re cheap.

    My favorite mags are the CPD/Duramag 20s.

    I’ve never broken a bolt but both of my 7.62x39 AR carbine & pistol run LMT bolts. They’re the best IMHO but out of production, and not cheap.
     
  21. 35 Whelen
    • Contributing Member

    35 Whelen Contributing Member

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    I bought one and put it on some no-name lower. Functions and feeds 100%, and accuracy, well, this is the very first group I fired after the build.

    qjr7jPUl.jpg

    35W
     
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  22. LoonWulf
    • Contributing Member

    LoonWulf Contributing Member

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    I've had a few generally like them.
     
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  23. Olympus

    Olympus Member

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    From my experience, they are hit or miss, at least on their complete uppers. They're big on the side-charging uppers for some reason and also the slanted handguards which I personally can't stand. Also, it seems like a majority of their barrels are carbine length gas which I'm not generally a fan of.
     
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  24. Waterboy3313

    Waterboy3313 Member

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    My BCA upper was purchased in pieces and assembled by myself. It was a side charging upper and 5.56 bcg with a 24 inch heavy stainless barrel. I've never had good luck with the bcg. I've taken off the side side handle and used in other successful uppers and still had problems.

    The barrel seems good. And I've pretty much ditched the rest of it. I've tried several buffers and spring combos and can not get the bcg to function reliably. For the time,money and frustration I could have bought several complete uppers from other known good sources and probably been happier.
     
  25. berettaprofessor

    berettaprofessor Member

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    Shot my new 7.62X39 Gen 2 Side charger BCA today enough to zero the flip-up sights on it. 18 rounds of cheap Monarch steel-cased ammo, no feeding or firing issues with an AR-Stoner mag. Figured I was sighted enough when I hit a 4" steel target at 60 yards with the flip-up sights. I cleaned it and found the innards to be good quality.; MPI marked on the bolt, staked gas keys, enhanced extractor as described by BCA. I'm happy.
     
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