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Gas rings on an AR-15 rifle

Firearms

Six Troubleshooting Solutions for AR-15 Function

When something goes wrong and the rifle won’t fire, the first question should always be, “What changed?” Before answering that, we have to determine—or at least I determine—whether we’re talking about a “fresh” rifle going through its shakedown period, or a (previously) trusted gun that’s suddenly decided to stop running. If it’s the first scenario, there’s a longer list of possibilities that include original parts, conditions, and installation quality. This article will focus on the previously-functioning rifle that’s taken a vacation from operation.

Four cartridge heads showing the effect of pressure

Ammunition

Reloading 101: Determining Safe Maximum Velocity

Part of the process of developing the load we’re seeking is learning how to safely set a cap on its pressure. Most of us don’t have pressure-testing equipment, so we rely on measurements and observation to know when we’re at the limit. Here are a few ideas on how to proceed in load testing to find the safe maximum velocity, and keep it safe.

AR-15 with SOCOM Boom Tube stock

Firearms

AR-15 Carbine Configuration

Don’t short-change a short gun! When you spec a carbine, think about shooting it! Simple? Yes. But don’t adapt to the carbine; make it adapt to you. Here are a few thoughts on how to get the most utility from your carbine.

Brass rifle cartridge cases

General

Reloading 101: The Cartridge Case

In this installment of Reloading 101, it’s good to keep in mind what you’re dealing with, and that is a cartridge case, and what happens to it during firing, which is what we’re setting out to remedy when we reuse it. Read the full article to find out what’s going on with your brass.

Sun Devil Adjustable Carrier Key

Reloading

Reloading 101: Pressure Curves and Port Pressure

When the bullet is sealing the bore, a longer barrel means more pressure is contained for a longer time. The smaller or larger the gas port size, the slower or faster the gas enters the system. The farther back or forward the port is located, the sooner or later. Bullet weight is a factor also: heavier bullets accelerate more slowly (This is also the reason heavy bullets erode the chamber throat faster than lighter bullets). Read the full story to understand pressure curves and port pressures.