Can anyone help with my AR-15 problem?

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by ballcoach16, Jan 30, 2011.

  1. ballcoach16

    ballcoach16 Member

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    I am new to the AR-15 world, so I hope I am not asking stupid questions.

    My rifle:
    Rock River Lower
    Del-Ton Mid-Length Upper
    Wilson Chrome Lined Heavy Barrel in 5.56
    Ammo: Tulammo 55 gr steel cased
    Magazines: 30 round gray metal mags with green follower from DPMS and 20 round Thermold mags made in NC

    Problem: I took the rifle out for the first time today. First 5 rounds fired from 30 round mag fine. Then "click". Bolt did not chamber round. Manual cycled and fired fine, then click on next round. This happened repeatedly. Tried a Thermold mag and all 20 rounds fired without incident. Used another metal mag and it became a single-shot rifle again. Changed to another Thermold and it would fire a couple of rounds then become a single-shot for the rest of the mag. It happened like this with all 5 Thermolds and both DPMS mags. Switched to a Stoner mag (buddies) and had same problem.

    Took BCG out, stripped, cleaned. Reassembled, fired 10 rounds from Thermold, no problem. Then it started again with both metal mags and Thermold mags, just like before.

    First thought, something is wrong in the BCG. Put my buddies bolt in, fired 20 rounds no problem from Thermold, so I thought problem is bolt. SO, I put my bolt back in and it fires 17 rounds fine from Thermold, but then goes to crap again. Changed mags and went back to single-shot rifle. I guess I should have fired more with buddis bolt in to be sure, but I was really aggravated at that point and he had to leave. After he left I shot about 70 more rounds, basically all in single shot mode. My hand really got tired pulling that charging handle so many times. :)

    I know some people say Tula ammo is no good, but know other guys who fired same ammo through the RRA lowers with delton uppers with nothing like this happening.

    Assuming the ammo aint the problem, what should I look at first?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. willdun40

    willdun40 New Member

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    u may have a problem with long rounds in mag load 28 rounds give mag wack on primer side to set rounds to back of mag
     

  3. mountainpass

    mountainpass Under Scrutiny

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    Is it not chambering a round and then chambering one but not striking the primer? Or is it never chambering a round?
     
  4. 1str8shot

    1str8shot New Member

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    if you think your having mag problems, then try a magpul p-mag. its a great mag.
     
  5. mountainpass

    mountainpass Under Scrutiny

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    How is the fit between the upper and lower?

    I would clean it well, then try new factory brass cased ammo.
     
  6. ballcoach16

    ballcoach16 Member

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    It's not chambering a round. I noticed that on some rounds that weren't chambered, there is a streak on top of the round where the bolt obviously slid over it, scratching it.
     
  7. mountainpass

    mountainpass Under Scrutiny

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    Could be the gas tube is not completely clean.
     
  8. jabara572

    jabara572 New Member

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    Always swap ammo when your having issues. Tulammo can be pretty underpowerd. FTLOG try some quality ammo in your AR-15, Tulammo is terrible to try and diagnose problems with.

    My guess is the bolt is not travelling to the rear fully to pick up another round. Probly works fine with XM193 or similar.


    Load one round into each of the mags and see if the BCG locks to the rear. If it doesnt do this 100% then theres your problem. Start there first
     
  9. CountryGun

    CountryGun New Member

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    Great points! My familiarity is only with the M-16, but I don't think your bolt is getting full travel, as "jabara" suggested.
     
  10. 45_Fan

    45_Fan Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like the bolt isn't going far enough back to strip the next round.

    Hotter rounds, weaker springs, or gas adjustment?
     
  11. ARMT Guy

    ARMT Guy Ordinary Average Guy

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    Did you happen to notice where the extracted cases were going? Falling straight down/scattered around by your feet? Somewhere close by? Somewhere else?

    There are those who say go to town with steel cased ammo in an AR. Fine.

    Try some more reputable, brass cased, American ammo and let us know what happens then.


    Also, no where in your initial post did you mention anything about whether or not the rifle was properly cleaned and lubed before you hit the range with it. Semi-autos NEED lube.
     
  12. ballcoach16

    ballcoach16 Member

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    I fired the rifle wet from the get-go.

    When I finally fired the last round in each magazine, the bolt locked back fine.

    I measured my buffer spring and it is just under 12 inches. Should it be shorter in a middy and using .223 ammo?
     
  13. jabara572

    jabara572 New Member

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    what buffer are you running
     
  14. ballcoach16

    ballcoach16 Member

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    It's short, so I'm guessing carbine length
     
  15. madcapmagician

    madcapmagician New Member

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    Go buy some good Federal ball ammo and try it again. Buy a Pmag and lube the gun and shoot it. If it isn't working with good ammo take good notes of what is happening from there.

    The Tula is the same stuff as Wolf (Tula is the ammo plant, Wolf just the importer). It is loaded with AK74 powder, which operates with a lower pressure than .223/5.56. Establish a good base line with good ammo before shooting the cheap stuff.

    Bring a camera and take pictures for next time.
     
  16. ballcoach16

    ballcoach16 Member

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    I'm gonna try different ammo first, buy here's a question: If its the ammo, why would it occasionally fire multiple rounds in a row (it did completely fire 2 full mags) and then the rest of the time screw up?

    Also, my friend fired 5 rounds in his Bushmaster with no problems. I forgot to mention, when I tried his Stoner magazine, the first round hung up (nose up jam), then went to the single-shot deal.
     
  17. mountainpass

    mountainpass Under Scrutiny

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    I'm guessing since it was clean it was able to cycle easier, but after a few rounds the low recoil ammo + dirty parts wouldn't let the bolt travel all the way back.
     
  18. ARMT Guy

    ARMT Guy Ordinary Average Guy

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    I agree.

    The issues all seem to be ammo related, so that's what I'd change out first, then see what happens.

    You've got a new rifle, so everything, ( parts wise ) should be good to go. On the other hand, since the rifle is new, then the fit between parts is tight. Thats why firearms need good ammo, ( at the very least during break in ) to function properly. The ammo should be conventional, brass case with FMJ bullets. As long as your rifle is rated for 5.56, ( most are, but double check ) I'd run that through it for the time being since it's a little hotter than .223 loads.

    Get her all cleaned up, give it a good, thorough inspection for any potential damage, then lube it up properly before you take it out to the range and run some brass cased 5.56 or at least some .223 FMJs through it. Watch the rifle, ( and/or have a buddy observe it ) as you're firing. Hell, if the rifle runs fine with brass, after a few mags of it, go back and try a mag of that steel crap and see what the rifle does then. Just because that ammo may work it someone elses rifle, ( perhaps because its already broken it, etc ) doesn't always mean that it's automatically gonna run great in your rifle too.
     
  19. CountryGun

    CountryGun New Member

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    Consider quality control too. Folks have reported a lot of variance in Tula ammo. Google Tula variances and you'll see. There are variances, even in the same box. Start looking at lot numbers too. Some go Pow! and some go "poof". People have even been able to feel the difference in recoil. Poofs won't drive the action.
     
  20. Nail Driver

    Nail Driver New Member

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    I've had the same problem with my AR rifles. In my case it was the ammo, my rifles will not fire cheap russian ammo or anything with steel casings, it is just something I must accept. I have friends that can fire it fine in their rifles but mine will not. Looking on the web it seems that it just depends on your specific rifle, some shoot it and some don't.

    ALSO

    You should look and make sure what caliber your barrell is. .556 will foul in a .223 barrell while .556 and .223 will be ok in a .556 barrell. Just a thought