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The AR-15 all famous m4 "Chart" that some swear by.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by helz_mcfugly, Dec 13, 2008.

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  1. helz_mcfugly

    helz_mcfugly Member

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    THis chart that keeps popping up in many people posts is the opinion and a little research of ONE man (rob_s) http://www.tacticalyellowvisor.net. not any company standard chart. just his opinion of the AR15 M4 rifles he has tested. which are inaccurate in some ways. I have a bushy and his chart says it doesnt have a properly staked gas key which I compaired with a friends colt to be identical. some people on this forum swear by this chart with no hands on expierence with more then one or two of the rifles on the list. One guy one here named Tim says Colt is the golden standard, everything else is crap. yet my "crap" out shoots the golden standards every weekend at the benchrest range. Go with what you know or have had your hands on, or what feels good in your hands, and most of all what You really want, not what some chart made up by one guy tells you is the best AR.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. KW

    KW Member

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    The guys who put this together hangs out on M4carbine.net. It was put together to make it easier for people to determine which brands and models had the features they wanted. If you feel some part of it is inaccurate, go on there and correct them. Much like scientific research, the way it improves is if more people contribute to correct errors in the existing information.
     
  3. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

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    The chart doesn't tell you what the best AR is. The chart is a quick reference as to what is standard on each brand's M4 type AR which they market as a fighting gun.

    Please see the google document here - http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=pwswheghNQsEuEhjFwPrgTA&hl=en - which explains the significance of each feature.
    The issue is consistency. Every maker occasionally stakes a carrier key properly, but companies like Colt, LMT, Noveske, and Sabre do it right every time.
    Rob's chart isn't about benchrest guns; it's about fighting M4s. Fighting M4s and benchrest AR-15s have nothing in common.

    Please also read the thread on M4 carbine.net where the chart was originally posted:
    http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=6642
     
  4. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Member

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    A BIG +1 to the above post...

    Rob's chart is about fighting guns that you bet your life on....not target guns.

    If a combat M4 (AR 15) fails...soldiers and LEO's may pay the ultimate price for that failure.

    Guys that know...do not go to war with "off the shelf" Bushmasters.

    If your Bushy has a properly staked gas key...you are one of the lucky ones...I've handled a few AR's, most Bushy's are not staked at all...let alone done properly.
     
  5. Kind of Blued

    Kind of Blued Member

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    It is what it is. I'd bet 99.9% of all AR owners wouldn't ever be let down by a Bushmaster, but if they have some extra money, they may want to put it into a gun with some more stringent quality control procedure.

    I keep an AR in my trunk, and another one close by for home defense. That means that no matter how horrible things get, I can rely on an AR being within a couple hundred yards of me at any second. I still don't worry about most of the things included in the chart. I don't think it would do me any good to worry about all (or any) of them either.
     
  6. rob_s

    rob_s Member

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    This should be interesting.

    You can also pick up a copy of the Chart and the Explanation of Features and the history of both in the current issue of "Surefire Presents: Guns & Ammo Combat Tactics". Here's a picture of the cover for those that might be interested.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. cracked butt

    cracked butt Member

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    The way I see it, its usually used by the colt kool-aid drinkers to justiy spending $400 more on a carbine that does the same thing as a Bushie carbine.


    And isn't the biggest argument against the AR series rifles for combat is that they aren't reliable enough? Aren't most of those rifles that fail under combat conditions colts?;)

    But but but... Colts have MPI tested bolts and proofed barrels! There are 10s of thousands of non-colt AR-15s shot every weekend in Highpower matches across the country- I've never heard of a bolt or barrel failing except for in te cases of poorly executed handloads. Yes, yes, not combat conditions, but the rifle doesn't care if its in Iraq or Iowa, it does the same thing when the trigger is pulled.

    There is nothing magical about Colts- they are what the troops use because they've been around the longest and have well entrenched lobbyists.
     
  8. vanfunk

    vanfunk Member

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    That's excellent, but it is far from the norm for Bushmaster. I have had four Bushmasters, of various vintages from 1998-2004, and all of them suffered from the same maladies: improperly staked gas keys and overtorqued barrels. The quality of the parts Bushmaster uses seems to be fine, but their assembly skills and overall quality control are poor, IMO. After having owned a number of rifles and carbines made by Armalite, Bushmaster, Colt, DPMS, and Rock River, I have found no meaningful difference in build quality beween them, with this singular exception: Colts are made better, of better materials, and they have demonstrated greater reliability for me under the broadest array of circumstances. They have not been the most accurate, but that is of secondary concern to me for a "fighting gun", as the difference between a 1.5" shooter and a 2" shooter is of negligible consequence.

    The chart is an accurate quick reference guide so buyers can make an informed choice; it's really that simple. It is not an unwarranted characterization to say that Bushmaster has, and continues to have, problems staking the carrier key. That doesn't mean that there aren't examples out there like yours that are staked properly, though I have not encountered one. What the chart doesn't say (though many erroneously conclude otherwise) is "Colt is the best, all other brands suck". All other brands don't suck, in fact, most commercial ARs are perfectly fine. Some makers put more into their builds, and have better QA/QC protocols, which necessarily cost more money. The chart articulates many of the features or qualities that the TDP specifies for a combat weapon; whether those features are necessary for your use is a personal decision, and has nothing to do with anything else. Some ARs are made better than others; that is a fact - whether those differences are "worth" it to you is an entirely different subject.

    vanfunk
     
  9. RockyMtnTactical

    RockyMtnTactical Member

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    If you are "going to war", you probably don't have much of a choice what you go with...
     
  10. H2O MAN

    H2O MAN member

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    The Chart

    This comparison chart is very handy and has helped many enthusiast understand the differences between brands.

    I've owned many Bushmaster ARs and a Colt LE 6920.
    I now own a NOVESKE upper on a POF lower with Colt parts in both... This combo meets my wants and needs.

    Rob, thank you the time and effort you put into compiling and updating this list... Keep up the good work :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2008
  11. flyboy1788

    flyboy1788 Member

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    +1 to ugaarguy.
     
  12. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    What difference does it make if the BC has the M-16 cut or not?
     
  13. proven

    proven Member

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    it's interesting how many feel the need to defend their choice in ARs against this chart. especially the ones that talk about high power matches and bench rest shooting. those people seem to miss the whole point of the chart to begin with.
     
  14. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    As was said, that chart is addressing the features present on the guns made by the major makers, with an eye towards the features that should be on a fighting rifle or carbine. The fact that a gun that lacks an MPI'ed bolt or some other feature outshoots a Colt (or any other gun) is a red herring. The chart is not giving information necessary for extreme benchrest accuracy. Very probably, the best benchrest guns would make lousy fighting rifles, and the best fighting rifles would be dreadful benchrest guns. I don't expect a Hum-vee to win the Indy 500, and I sure don't expect a Formula One car to fare well in Fallujah.

    The thing is, "Tim" (from the OP) is as wrong-headed as the OP, assumng they're talking about the same thing. Colt may well be the gold standard for a fighting rifle (debatable, but they're certainly top tier), but if the point is benchrest accuracy, the advantages Colt offers are moot. Your bolt fails. Drop in a new bolt. Simple, as long as you're on a range, and not under fire outside Kabul. The OP, however, is on a range, and is shooting recreationally, and likes the tight groupings offered by his HBAR varminter (I imagine). that same gun woudl be a lousy performer in Iraq, but he's not in Iraq.

    The point is that The Chart is intended to address something other than the OP finds important. And there's nothing wrong with that. For his purposes, he does not need an MPIed bolt, parkerizing under the FSB, an F-marked FSB, etc etc etc.

    This doesn't change the fact that people who fight with their rifles, or train hard with their rifles (LEOs, soldiers, Marines, citizens preparing for the worst, etc) do need those things.

    Mike
     
  15. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    LOL. Direct hit, RMT.:)

    Of course, when I was reading Soldier of Fortune...
     
  16. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Member

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    OK...bad choice of words...it was late.

    But I think you know what I meant.
     
  17. carbine85

    carbine85 Member

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    The original chart was made up over 2-3 years ago. Things change and manufacturers change to. I think the chart was accurate at the time it was
    1st published. I think most of the changes can be seen in some of the lower cost rifles. I noticed on the first chart I saw that the information on Rock River wasn't accurate.
     
  18. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Member

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    It has been revised at least twice that I know of.
     
  19. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    From the spreadsheet referenced by UGAARguy
    It's a small difference, but small differences add up to increased reliability. For a range gun and a plinker, it's a non-issue.
    Depends. What is that "thing"? If that thing is being dragged to the range and shot a couple times a year, for a total of maybe 1k rounds, you're absolutely right. If that that thing is taking multiple carbine classes in a year and then being carried on the street by a LEO, I'm pretty sure most of the people who actually teach carbine classes, and who watch rifles choke, will tell you differently.
    Drop a pallet of box-stock "Bushie carbines" into the procurement stream and send them to A-stan, and see what happens. Any individual Colt or FN rifle can fail, and any individual Bushmaster can be flawless, under the same conditions. What matters is the rate of failure, for a given level of use. I'll bet a kidney that the rate of failure for a non-milspec m4gery will be higher than the rate of failure for an M4. The question is whether or not the end user needs that level of reliability and durability. If you're a pinker, you don't. If you're a hard user, you probably do.

    Mike
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2008
  20. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    And no, I don't own a Colt.

    Mike
     
  21. SHvar

    SHvar Member

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    Keep in mind the chart is about the M-4 models sold by these companies only.
    The chart is inaccurate in some cases.
    I would have to say that the chart could be inaccurate with all M-4 type rifles from all of the companies, from just looking at enough models of each.
    Nothing against any of the manufacturers in particular, but you could find enough of each to prove the chart wrong in many categories.
    Also most importantly, is the proof testing actually being done just because a company claims it? Is MP testing being done on every barrel and bolt, simply because a machine stamped it there?
    Colt has simply been in bed with the US for so many years that both are comfortable. They make some great quality rifles, and some accurate rifles, but no more or less than any of the other companies.
    Anyone with military experience knows that milspec doesnt mean better, stronger, tougher, more reliable, or anything. It just means that a spec was set down on paper by DOD officials that sit in an office and theorize all day, now that spec is set in stone and must be adhered to unless you jump through hoops for 8 years or more to prove that something is 100% without a doubt better. With colt getting almost every contract (minus a few) for rifles in almost 50 years, no one will change the specs.
    If you get a model other than M-4 from several companies on that list you will see features that are not given credit for, and some that are given credit for.
    Simply put, if you take any good example from anyone on that list. You maintain said example as you should according to the companies suggestions, and according to what the military trains its soldiers for weapon maintance, you will never see a failure period. Dont maintain them and you will see any model fail, bar none.
    By the way many law enforcement departments dont buy new rifles, they buy used military surplus rifles, not new rifles, why, they can get used M-16s for $25-$100 each. In some cases new rifles are bought, but none in any single large contract, small budgets pay for them. The primary weapon of law enforcement is their sidearm, the rifle is always a "just in case" weapon, many will never be fired except at targets. In fact the biggest problem many LE weapons have is that they have fully loaded magazines for too long, and the magazine fails if it is needed.
    If you went from one department to another, and piled up their rifles by manufacturer and model, you would have a huge hodge-podge of rifles that have little in common from all major manufacturers.
     
  22. proven

    proven Member

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    this simply isn't true.

    as already stated some mfrs don't use an m16 BCG, therefor the firing pin is what cocks the hammer. how long will that firing pin hold up?

    some mfrs don't properly stake gas keys on ANY sample of their m4.

    yet again, some mfrs don't use proper extractor springs on ANY of their samples.


    take one of these samples to a class and run it hard against any of the mfrs that follow the specs and see which breaks first.
     
  23. AirPower

    AirPower Member

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    Where is Rock River Arms on the chart? That's one piece missing on the chart.

    RRA makes some great rifles, they have contract with DEA and other DOJ groups for AR type firearms.
     
  24. forquidder

    forquidder Member

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    Rock River

    "Where is Rock River Arms on the chart?"

    Hmmm, good question.
    Maybe they are sooo good that they're "off the Chart?" :D
     
  25. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    RRA is about on par with Bushmaster, in my limited experience. I own an RRA, and it runs well. Their fit and finish is superb, but IIRC they offer none of the bolt features, except the carrier keys I've seen have been properly staked. I dunno about the lowers. They offer some of the barrel features, but not all.

    Don't make too much of the bolt features, though. While the stuff on that list is important, you can also buy a good complete BCG done right and drop it in, or keep it as a backup should your original one fail. Make sure to add the cost of that to the rifle, though. You'll start inching up towards "Overpriced Colt" territory when you do.

    I replaced my RRA BCG with a BravoCo complete M16 BCG, MPI'ed and shot-peened.

    Mike
     
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