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cold weather question

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by justin98370, Nov 23, 2013.

  1. justin98370

    justin98370 kitsap county, WA New Member

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    I took my AR out to the range yesterday. It was around 30 degrees out and my bolt would not cycle. I had to manually do it after every shot. I put 120 rounds through it and it was still doing it. Was this because of the cold weather, or could it be some other factor. It had been freshly cleaned and lubed.
     
  2. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    What kind of ammo was it? Try that ammo through another AR.
     
  3. justin98370

    justin98370 kitsap county, WA New Member

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    It was 62gr Federal. Unfortunately, I didn't have any other ammo or another AR.
     
  4. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    If it didn't work after it had been fired a half dozen times I would think something besides cold was wrong. Metals contract not swell when cold. So any tolerances would have most likely gotten greater.
     
  5. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    What kind of lubrication do you use? Some lubricants do not work well in cold weather, they thicken and turn gummy.
     
  6. CJ1089

    CJ1089 Aloha, Oregon Marveling at the world.

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    By "bolt did not cycle" do you mean it failed to travel far enough back to extract (short cycle) or it just didn't move (non-cycle).
    Did this ammo successfully operate the rifle previously?
    Did the rifle successfully operate with different ammo previously?
    If it was a non-cycle then the gas port is blocked, the gas tube is blocked, the gas checks on the bolt are misaligned or missing, bolt carrier gas key is loose or missing.
    A Short cycle is usually bad ammo for the rifle configuration (at this temp). Some types of gunpowder are more sensitive to temp than others, and freezing temps could be driving down operating pressure. But that would mean that the ammo barely worked the action at previous range days. Any FTE's with this ammo before? The gas checks lining up on the bolt can also allow excess gas blow-by giving a weak cycle, so you may want to start there.
    Best of luck,
     
  7. justin98370

    justin98370 kitsap county, WA New Member

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    It was definitely a non-cycle. Thank you for the run down of things to check. I'll strip it down tomorrow and see if I csn find the problem.
     
  8. CJ1089

    CJ1089 Aloha, Oregon Marveling at the world.

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    Another remote possibility is a canted gas block (front sight). Very noticeable in an iron sighted rifle but maybe you got a flat top.
     
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  9. simon99

    simon99 Central Oregon Well-Known Member

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    30 degrees isn't really that cold. It sounds like a gas problem ( ha,ha) , ammo issue or as others have stated a problem with the lube you are using.....
     
  10. Velzey

    Velzey Estacada, Oregon Gunsmith Gunsmith Bronze Vendor Bronze Supporter

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    Lose the lube! See if that helps!
     
  11. cookie

    cookie THE SOCIALIST STATE OF KALI - FORNIA Well-Known Member

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    I get stiff 'not that kind" when it gets 30* out.
     
  12. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    Good responses so far except for cookie :bluelaugh:

    Might try teflon spray lube if all else fails.. is the gun new? Has it done this before? Is it a home build or factory, and what brand if factory
     
  13. saxon

    saxon springfield Active Member

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    it is to much or the type of lube you used try an AK :D
     
  14. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    AKs need lube? :p

    OK, once in a while I use a little dirty motor oil
     
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  15. saxon

    saxon springfield Active Member

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    well after you shoot 4 or 500 rounds through the AK you can set it next to the ar to warm it up and that might work :D :D

     
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  16. ch139

    ch139 teh gehtoe Active Member

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    Loose gas key?
     
  17. eldbillbo

    eldbillbo clackamas New world samurai and a redneck none the less Bronze Supporter

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    So is this the first time you took it out shooting or have you tried it during warm weather and now it fails.

    never had a failure due to cold with a ar15 and i have shot below freezing weather .

    but if its all brand new. and a pieced together rifle ( or even a factory rifle ) there could a simple minor issue thats causing it to fail as many have mentioned gas. but out of spec parts can cause problems .

    most common

    loose gas key they have to be on tight
    improperly indexed or loose gas block


    other possible problems
    gas port drilled too small ( some panic 20" barrels were drilled with ports too small )
    gas tube missing roll pin
    plugged gas tube
    out of spec locking lugs
    out of spec gas key
    out of spec extractor (sticks out too much and causes resistance some panic extractors went out like this)
    barrel nut not properly installed causing the gas tube to bend slightly in a way to cause resistance in the gas key.
     
  18. U201491

    U201491 Well-Known Member

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    I sure do like piston guns. No issues like this.
     
  19. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    Paging Justin.. several people have spent time trying to help you.. and you're MIA :rolleyes:

    Taku, I've never had problems with properly set up and maintained gas system ARs
     
  20. eldbillbo

    eldbillbo clackamas New world samurai and a redneck none the less Bronze Supporter

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    not really . a off center gas block or undersized or over sized gas port out of spec parts can cause the same problems there are trouble shooting forums specifically for gas piston uppers remember there are 100 times more DI system rifles than Piston rifles on the market and if you ever visited the Piston trouble shooting forums you may find that the % piston failures are equal to if not greater than DI issues and usually for the same reasons other than problems related to loose gas key.

    But let us not go there .