Saturday, August 1, 2009

AR-24 Update: Cold Hard Bitch

Push "PLAY" to share my frustrations...

I took the AR-24 back out to the range last night and fed it 74 rounds of Wolf Military Classic 9mm and James shot ten rounds of Winchester white box through it. Of those 84 rounds, I had seven stovepipe style jams. That's entirely unacceptable. I've only got about 250 rounds through this gun and it has about a 15% failure rate. Like I said, completely unacceptable. The Glock I traded off for it had digested several thousand rounds with zero jams at all.

So why am I still dealing with the AR? Well, it has awesome ergonomics and is one of the most accurate pistols I've ever shot. It also gives the option of carrying cocked and locked, or in the traditional DA/SA mode. It also has a nice trigger. And it was $150 cheaper than its cousin, the CZ-75B. From the look of things, you'd think this would be an awesome firearm. And when it runs, it is. But, being a happily married man, well acquainted with female behavior, I can safely proclaim that this firearm is clearly female. When it wants to, it treats you famously. But when you bring her out to show off to your friends, she shuts you down and makes you look like a real jackass. The AR-24 is a cold, hard bitch. But I can't quite bring myself to write her off just yet.

But if she does continue to give me hell, I've got my eye on a rebound girl--either the FNP-9 or the EAA Witness Elite Match. Hopefully we can work things out though.


Anonymous said...

Wow. Man, you're scaring me. I have had no hassles yet, but I don't use a bunch of different ammo. Did you use either of these two loads when you made your original range report?

I left you a comment on the original range report re: feed problems a couple of months ago. I didn't mention it then, but, It was a specific load that "caused" the problem to occur ( Hornady 147 gr TAP FPD).

I don't find much useful being written by AR-24 users. So, thanks for keeping us in the loop.

Mike Nomad

DC Houghton, esq. said...

I have fed my AR-24 115gr Winchester white box, Blazer Brass 115, Blazer Aluminum 115, Wolf Mil. Classic 115, and Hornady XTP 124gr. All rounds experienced stovepipes.

Don't tell the folks at Armalite, but I pulled the extractor off and saw the red "loaded chamber indicator" stripe painted on the top right of the extractor. I've NEVER seen it exposed before. I didn't even know it was there. Two things occurred to me: 1) This could be a larger extractor for a .40S&W, or 2) The geometry of this particular extractor is completely wrong.

I will be calling Armalite on Monday morning to see if they will send me an extractor and spring. Hopefully they aren't too anal about things and just ship me the part without asking to send it to them or to a gunsmith. If you have a pulse and two hands, you can pull the extractor off the AR-24.

I love the ergonomics and accuracy, but if I can't make it work, she's hittin' the road.

Anonymous said...

I've also used Hornady 124 gr TAP FPD, and Remington 147 gr Golden Saber. For this disco stuff, the Hornady 147 I mentioned previously is the way to go.

Re: extractor & red indicator. With a round in the chamber, I only see the slightest bit of red on the extractor. Looking closely, I see it's because of a crap paint job.

There is a slight indent or channel cut into the top of the extractor, and it lines up on the outside edge of the frame when a round is chambered.

Some measurements taken with a dial-caliper (.001 inch accurate, I'm "eyeballing" the 4th digit based on where the needle is between the hashes):

Slide width of .7765 inches just behind the extractor.

With a round chambered, slide width including the extractor (at the front, where it is most exposed) is .8121 inches.

Good luck w/ Armalite.