What is Tacticool? Duracoat and more

Tacticool

Derived from the word “Tactical”.

1.) Descriptive word for equipment or clothing that does not have any tactical purpose; but looks cool.
2.) A person who is a city dweller; but wishes to look like a warrior or as if they are/were in the armed forces.
3.) Appearance that mimics military or martial arts.”

4.) Descriptive word for equipment or clothing that does have a tactical purpose; but has more than needed or required installed on the firearm.

I added in number 4. Most of us have seen that guy, they have every known attachment both tactical and non-tactical, weighing in at over 50 pounds. They hump it around for a bit and then realize how heavy and impractical it is and start removing stuff they don’t need for that mission.

Now that we have the bolt on accessories figured out, let’s talk about coating them and / or your weapon.  There are two processes we will discuss application about; hydrographics and DuraCoat. These are very basic steps.

First to apply hydrographics a.k.a Water transfer printing:

  1. The part must be free of all dirt, oils, wax, grease, loose paint or other contaminants that could affect the finished product.
  2. Mask off areas not to be printed on etc. Use the universal primer to prime the part.
  3. Spray the part with the appropriate base coat.
  4. Item is submerged into dipping container with the film floating on top of the water.
  5. Rinse the part to remove any residue from the dipping procedure.
  6. Finish the item with the spray clear coat.

And now for Duracoat:

  1. Cover the surface where you will be working with newspaper.
  2. Dis-assemble the entire firearm and clean all pieces thoroughly, making sure there is no trace of oil on any piece you want to coat.
  3. Use denatured alcohol or TruStrip for a final wipe down of the parts you want to Duracoat to remove all oils.
  4. Use painter’s tape to mask off any parts that will not be painted.
  5. Make jigs or snip pieces of the wire to make hooks to hang the parts to spray and dry.
  6. Have some lacquer thinner ready for any potential mistakes and to clean up.
  7. Set up the air sprayer and set the compressor to 30 psi.
  8. Mix the Duracoat paints to get the color you desire. Test spray on a scrap piece of metal to check color.
  9. Combine 1 part Duracoat Hardener to 14 parts Duracoat paint. Shake thoroughly for at least 3 minutes, and pour into the paint receptacle on the air-sprayer.
  10. Hold spray tip 4 to 8 inches from the parts and spray Duracoat with sweeping passes from left to right. You can make multiple passes to get to the ideal final thickness of 1 mil, applied in 1 to 3 passes.
  11. Set parts aside to dry and cure. They will be dry enough for light use in 24 hours, but ideally they should be allowed to dry for 2-4 weeks.

As with everything AR related, there are a crazy amount of accessories and at least twice as many opinions. Everything from Backup metal sights to chainsaw attachments. It always breaks down to what you need, what you want, and how much money you have. It is hard to know what you need if you don’t know it exists. Learn, go on line, join a shooting club, take a class, show the next generation.

 

REF: https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=tacticool

http://www.dip123.com/

https://www.wikihow.com/Apply-Duracoat

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KeyMod, M-LOK, or Picatinny? Surveying the Future of Rail Accessories

There are three major rail types Picatinny, KeyMod and MLOK.

Picatinny are MIL spec MIL-STD-1913 and on are on many military firearms, so I dont think they will be going any place for a very long time. There are also a very large number of accessories using this standard that also will not change any time soon. There are a couple downsides to the Picatinny rail; first is they can get heavy add unnecessary weight to your rifle and bulk it up in a bad way, especially when placed on the fore end of your rifle. They also have sharp edges that can get snagged on or damage other gear as well as un-gloved hands.

The KeyMod system gets its name from the shape of the slots, which look like old-fashioned keyholes. You put the lug through the big circular opening and then slide the attachment forward, tightening the Allan wrench in the narrow part of the slot until your attachment is securely fastened. It also has an auto aligning feature when you tighten things down. The design is completely open source, so anyone who’s interested in manufacturing products using the KeyMod system can do so without having to pay royalties.  On the down side KeyMod did not do too good in the USSOCOM testing referenced below. Specifically the stress testing, this might sway me and others to look closer at our next rail, M-LOK. Especially if you are not heavily invested in one or the other.

The M-LOK system by Magpul uses slots in place of the keyholes. The attachment lugs on M-Lok accessories are t-shaped and bi-directional so they can be placed at the front or rear of the slots. While M-LOK is free licensed, it is not open source, and thus manufacturers must acquire a license from Magpul before making products using the M-LOK standard. Magpul claims this gives them more control in assuring that all M-LOK products are made to specifications ensuring compatibility. Program participation is open to any interested manufacturer. This might not matter with Magpul’s dominance in the accessories market.

I dont think Picatinny will go anyplace soon, especially for mounting scopes. It has already adapted to smaller sections that can be mounted on either KeyMod or M-LOK. M-LOK vs. KeyMod is where the real fight will be, and with the Magpul monster leading the charge for M-LOK we soon might see the end of KeyMod.

REF: https://www.pewpewtactical.com/keymod-vs-m-lok/

http://soldiersystems.net/2017/05/05/details-on-the-ussocom-sponsored-keymod-vs-m-lok-test-conducted-at-nswc-crane/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M-LOK#Licensing

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‘Ed’s Red’ Bore Cleaner

Just in case the they make it hard to find, I’ll put it here:

CONTENTS: Ed’s Red Bore Cleaner

1 part Dexron II, IIe or III ATF, GM Spec. D-20265 or later.

1 part Kerosene – deodorized, K1

1 part Aliphatic Mineral Spirits, Fed. Spec. TT-T-2981F, CAS
#64741-49-9, or may substitute “Stoddard Solvent”, CAS #8052-41-3, or
equivalent, (aka “Varsol”)

1 part Acetone, CAS #67-64-1.

(Optional up to 1 lb. of Lanolin, Anhydrous, USP per gallon, OK to
substitute Lanolin, Modified, Topical Lubricant, from the drug store)

                  MIXING INSTRUCTIONS FOR “ER” BORE CLEANER:

Mix outdoors, in good ventilation. Use a clean 1 gallon metal,
chemical-resistant, heavy gage PET or PVC plastic container. NFPA
approved plastic gasoline storage containers are also OK. Do NOT use
HDPE, which is permeable, because the acetone will eventually evaporate.
The acetone in ER will also attack HDPE, causing the container to
collapse, making a heck of a mess!

Add the ATF first. Use the empty container to measure the other
components, so that it is thoroughly rinsed. If you incorporate the
lanolin into the mixture, melt this carefully in a double boiler, taking
precautions against fire. Pour the melted lanolin it into a larger
container, rinsing the lanolin container with the bore cleaner mix, and
stirring until it is all dissolved.

I recommend diverting a small quantity, up to 4 ozs. per quart of the
50-50 ATF/kerosene mix for optional use as an “ER-compatible” gun oil.
This can be done without impairing the effectiveness of the remaining
mix.

This is a direct copy for this great source: http://handloads.com/articles/default.asp?id=9

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AR-15 Direct Impingement and Piston-Driven

The original, Eugene Stoner AR 15 firearms are what is called direct impingement. When the bullet is fired it goes screaming down the barrel, as it passed the gas block it directs some of the gas down the gas tube into the gas key on the bolt carrier pushing it back and cycling the weapon. Excess gas is vented to the upper and lower receivers. For the sake of this paper that is the simple description

Now piston operation works pretty much the same up to the gas block. When it gets to the gas block most of the gas is vented into a piston and pushes a rod back that pushes the bolt carrier back cycling the weapon. The excess gas escapes at the piston by the gas block. Again, very simple terms.

1. Piston-driven guns run much cleaner. The gas is vented at the gas block versus venting into the upper and lower receivers.
2. On average, piston-driven guns cost more. There are some very expensive gas impingement ARs and some inexpensive piston-driven AR rifles. However, if you want to purchase the least expensive AR possible, it will be a gas impingement gun.
3. Gas impingement guns are more suppressor-friendly, especially those with an adjustable gas block that allows you to control the amount of gas directed back through the gas tube. It should be noted that with both systems, your rifle will fire dirtier with a suppressor.
4. Piston-driven guns run cooler. The gas that enters the upper and lower receivers is hot, making what is touches hot. On a piston-driven rifle the hot gas evacuates at the gas block, further away from your hands.
The one item that has a lot of controversy is the accuracy, many say that the direct impingement is more accurate. I am going to leave that one alone until I can check myself. Both piston-driven and gas impingement guns are very reliable. If I had to pick between a gas impingement and a piston-driven AR, I think I would try the piston driven, simply because I have not tried it yet and the research sounds like it might be a great option except for three things: parts for gas impingement ARs are easier to find, much more plentiful and less expensive. Still think I’ll do it.
If you own a gas impingement AR and want to try a piston-driven AR, just purchase a piston-driven upper receiver. Since the gas impingement and piston systems work independently of the lower receiver, you can alternate between both on the same lower receiver.

REF:

6 Facts About AR-15 Gas Impingement Vs. Piston

Build an AR-15: Direct Impingement or Piston Operation?

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A Word About Ammo

Choosing the right round for your AR build is one of the first things you should consider in your build process. With so many options ranging from .22 long to .50 BMG it is not an easy task. Several factors need to be taken into consideration, what will the rifle be used for? Plinking, home defense, large game? Does the cost per round and availability meet my needs? $3.78 a round for .50 BMG is a little expense compared to $0.48 for 22LR for frequent range trips and general plinking. Other considerations are barrel length and twist. Heavier bullets require more twists, 1:12 and longer barrels while lighter bullets can use shorter barrels with less twists, 1:7.

There are four major bullet types:

Full metal jacket (FMJ): a harder metal like copper, steel alloy, or gilding metal wrapped around a soft core usually lead. Sometime referred to as ball ammo. Inexpensive and good penetration are characteristics of this type.

Jacketed soft point (JSP): a harder metal like copper, steel alloy, or gilding metal wrapped around a soft core usually lead but with the lead tip exposed. This allows the round to expand on impact creating a larger wound.

Jacketed Hollow point (JHP): a hard metal like copper, steel alloy, or gilding metal bullet with a hollowed tip. It is designed to create a mushroom shape on impact decreasing penetration allowing for less collateral damage.

Boattail (BT): a hard metal like copper, steel alloy, or gilding metal bullet with a shape of a boat. This allows for a more stable and accurate round. Usually used in competitions.

A way to save money on the ammo mentioned above is to purchase surplus. Surplus ammo comes with other, non-monetary cost. It usually uses corrosive primers and/or has been sitting in storage for a bit collecting dust and dirt. One way to mitigate the corrosion is with ammonia, the amount in window cleaner is enough to get the job done. Just flush your upper with some cheap window cleaner when you are done shooting. Then when you are home clean and lube everything up, just like you do after every range trip. Not so much with 5.56 surplus ammo anymore but something to keep in mind with surplus ammo is that it is not marked well. You might not know what is in the projectile. It might be steel or other material that is not indoor range friendly.

The caliber and twist of your AR 15 is normally stamped on the barrel, if not, check the literature that came with your barrel or rifle. The 5.56 and .223 rounds are close, but not identical. The .223 is a civilian round and has Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute (SAAMI) specs while the 5.56 is a military round that has their own specifications that might require higher pressure for higher velocity. As a rule of thumb, 5.56 chamber is OK to fire both 5.56 and .223 but .223 chamber is not OK to fire only .223.

Surplus ammo plays a role in the cost effectiveness of reloading. With the cheap price of surplus ammo it is not cost effective to reload those calibers. I think you start seeing a return on your investment when you start reloading “off” or custom calibers. Your presses and other equipment’s can cost a couple hundred dollars to your total cost of investment. If you are not reloading to save money but rather to get better accuracy with a better round or as a great way t relax and get more involved with your complete shooting experience, then reloading is for you.

REF:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Full_metal_jacket_bullet
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soft-point_bullet
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hollow-point_bullet
https://ammo.com/bullet-type/full-metal-jacket-boat-tail-fmj-bt

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Starter on AR-15 Problems

There are a few areas of consideration when assessing issues with the AR-15 style firearms.

1.) Is the firearm new from a factory? If yes, is it a reputable manufacture, or fly by night?

2.) Is it a new home built? Is this the builders 1st or 50th?

3.) Finally, is this a used rifle that has been fired many times and just started to malfunction?

Ammo and routine maintenance are other items that should be looked at for all 3 considerations. Is it good quality ammo? Hand-loads? Cheap Ammo? When was the last time the rifle was cleaned?

First things first, clear the weapon, make sure it is safe and preform a function check. If the function check fails and it is a new rifle, you might want to send it back. If it is a new home built check that the springs are installed and installed correctly, in the right direction and place. If it is used and just started happening, check for spring wear and replace as needed. The hammer spring is a common culprit of many issues to include intermittent firing, misfires and light fires.

Bad gas can cause a lot of problems like short stroking which can be caused by an improperly staked bolt carrier key coming loose. Another spot to look is if the gas rings are missing or damaged, this is usually on the used rifles. On home built rifles especially, make sure the inlet and the gas port are properly aligned, tightened, and the correct tube is being used. An incorrect or misaligned gas block is a common culprit.

A failure to eject scenario can be cause by extractor and ejector springs. Would not hurt to have a few of those around the shop. Weak springs can cause the spent casing to get caught in the ejection port causing a stove pipe situation. Tell tail signs of ejector/extractor issues are dented cases, round rim markings like scratches or damage to the stamping at the bottom of the round. Inconsistent round ejection is another sign, if you test fire the weapon 3 times and the brass ejects to 3 very different angles, you have an issue. All 3 rounds should end up in a pile close to each other.

Talk to the person bringing you the rifle with the 3 questions above in mind. This will help you narrow down the issue and get the weapon back to your customer quickly. The AR-15 is a reliable weapon and with some initial questioning and test fires as required, you can quickly diagnose the issues and fix it.

REF:

YouTube – Various Michael Bell videos

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AR-15 Parts and Functions

The function of the LOWER RECEIVER ASSEMBLY is to house the below items. This is also where the main difference between the AR-15 and the M16 is. The fire control group of the M16 allows either 3 round burst or full automatic fire in addition to safe and semi-auto fire. The AR-15 does not, it has only Safe and Semi firing options.

Lower Receiver – The lower receiver is the part of your rifle that is generally considered to be the firearm itself by the ATF. The lower receiver is where you’ll find your weapon’s serial number. This is also the only part that you will need to get from your local FFL.

Fire Control Group – The Fire control group consists of the trigger and the hammer of your AR-15, as well as other necessary housing components.

Receiver Extension and Buffer Assembly – As part of your rifle’s recoil system, this assembly helps absorb a lot of that kick, making a better shooting experience.

Magazine Catch Assembly – to secure the magazine and allow release when finished.

Bolt Catch Assembly – Is there to lock the bolt to the rear either manually or automatically when the last round is fired and the magazine is empty.

Stock – The butt stock is the part of your AR-15 that connects to the rifle’s firing mechanisms.

Pistol Grip – The pistol grip attaches to the lower receiver, giving you a firm handle of your rifle.

Takedown and Pivot Pin Assemblies – The takedown and pivot pins and detents lock the upper and lower receivers together.

The UPPER RECEIVER ASSEMBLY house the below assemblies and are the same for AR-15 and M16 rifles.

Upper Receiver – The upper receiver is the part that contains the bolt carrier group and charging handle. The barrel and the forend are also attached to the upper receiver.

Barrel Assembly – The barrel will play a huge role in your accuracy on the range or in the field. There are many different calibers and lengths available.

Bolt Assembly – Houses the extractor and ejector assemblies. It locks the breech and initiates the ignition of the cartridge

Extractor Assembly – removes the round from the chamber

Ejector Assembly – Ejects the round from the breech

Bolt Carrier Assembly – consists of the firing pin, bolt, cam pin, extractor and gas key. At a very basic level, the bolt carrier group is responsible for loading your rifle, making sure bullets are fired correctly and ejecting spent rounds from the chamber.

Gas System – Your rifle relies on gas pressure to operate in the way that it’s designed. For the most part, gas blocks are installed on the barrel, inside the handguard. The gas tube connects to the block and the upper receiver.

Charging Handle Assembly – A charging handle is the part that pulls your bolt carrier group to the rear when you need to chamber a round or to clear a malfunction.

Forward Assist Assembly – If for whatever reason your bolt isn’t operating properly and won’t close all the way, the forward assist should help make sure it goes back into place.

Ejection Port Cover Assembly – When it’s closed, the ejection port cover will prevent dirt, dust and other debris from dirtying your rifle, as it keeps both the bolt carrier group and the upper receiver clean

Handguard(s) Assembly – The primary uses of rail systems and handguards is to protect your hand from this heat so you can enjoy a comfortable shooting experience.

Sights – Front and rear sights are alined to aim the rifle.

Magazine – You can get different sized magazines, but it’s important to keep in mind that laws for the size of magazines can vary from state to state.

When all of the above are assembled correctly it will allow for the eight cycles of firing:

1. Firing

2. Unlocking

3. Extraction

4. Ejecting

5. Cocking

6. Feeding

7. Chambering

8. Locking

All of the above parts and systems have many different variants. This is one of the great things about this platform. You can have barrel lengths from 24 to 7.5 inches with each having different twist rates. Handguards, Stocks and triggers also come in a wide variety of options. Bolt on additions seem to be only limited by your wallet.

REF:

U.S. Army TM 9-1005-319-10

https://www.wingtactical.com/parts-of-an-ar-15/

https://youtu.be/-UYctFUXuCM

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Firearms workstation

Here is the firearms workstation in the shop. It is a stand up workbench designed to do more of the heavy lifting. Muzzle breaks, barrels and the like.

It has a yoga mat pad for no slip protection and a Harbor Freight dual axis vise with jaw protectors.

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Firearms Light Duty / Cleaning Station

I wanted to show my light duty, sit down firearms station. This is in the Armory where it is easy to control the climate.

I made a set of drawers to help hold all my stuff.

Wanted some better light so we got a high efficiency light for overhead:

Right now the switch is a power strip. Made a real switch that I will add in the next couple days.

Thats it for now, I will update this weekend.

Forgot to show the railing! I have a Tipton Best Gun Vise, I got tired of having to clamp it down. So I routed the rail directly into the workspace!

Works good so far

As you can see from the pictures above, cant tell it is there when the mat is rolled over it.

Got the light switch hooked up

Full shot:

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