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new YHM carbine length 'diamond' free float handguard (pic) and review

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by the puma, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. the puma

    the puma Oregon City Active Member

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    After looking at free float handguards for a couple years, I finally bit the bullet. I got the Yankee Hill Diamond free float tube, and I like it, however I almost regret this setup.

    It has some real advantages. Value: can be had for under $100, but I paid a bit more because it's out of stock most places...supply/demand, and that's fine. Quality: it fit perfectly, was machined very nicely, finished nicely, lightweight and attractive

    I also got the YHM flip up front gas block/sight, Magpul AFG2 (angled foregrip, version 2) and some Troy push-button sling swivels.

    The installation was fairly simple, but I had a buddy do most of the work for me. He's a Colt armorer and has all the tools, and then some. The most difficult part was aligning the new front sight (it's a two piece, and there are no alignment marks). I love being able to use my eotech with no sights obstructing my view.

    As much as I like it, I would likely do it differently if I were to do it all over again. I just think the front sight area looks a bit goofy. In retrospect, I would have gotten the 'extended carbine' length handguard ("Specter length") and a low profile gas block. The longer handguard would cover the gas block completely, and I would have gotten a picatinny mount front flip sight. This would have given me more rail space and would have looked better. Oh well, I may do this i the future.

    d1a04728.jpg
     
  2. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    My gals' new carbine is very similar.. but the M4 barrel has a bad chamber and we're going to hold out for the sold-out-everywhere Yankee Hills diamond fluted M4 barrel to come back into supply. Set your gun level and place a level on the front sight to align..

    My only problem with the YHM front sight is that it does not have an auto pop up feature like the rear polymer MagPul sight does, and the little release pin thing looks like it could snag on something

    We're going with the new mini Eotech. It uses one CR123 battery and is a lot smaller and lighter. It's available with and without BDC

    Product: EXPS3-2 | L-3 EOTech Holographic Weapons Systems
     
  3. the puma

    the puma Oregon City Active Member

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    I shot it today, and I like how it feels. I really like using a red dot with no iron sights in my view. Unfortunately, I don't like this setup as much as I had hoped. I think I'm going to get a longer handguard (full length=12.5") to replace the carbine length one. Of course I'll have to get the low profile gas block and handguard mounted front sight. Nothing like buyer's remorse.

    Something I didn't think about was the front sight getting very hot after shooting a few boxes of ammo. I adjusted the eotech and then went with irons to get it sighted in and I almost burned my finger. I guess I didn't think this build through all the way. I need to get some rail covers too.
     
  4. RallySoob

    RallySoob Salem, OR Active Member

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    I used to run a micro gas block under a 9" rail on my AR15... The Free Float quad rail I had, like most, clamped onto the bbl nut. All the handling of the gun caused the bbl nut to become loose over about a 2yr span thus making the FF tube rotate and my buis became useless. Also, I had the FF tube come loose on the nut one time... There are some great FF tubes out there with advanced locking mechanisms like Larue makes but they are upwards $350+. I had spent $300 on that LWRC ARm-R rail mentioned above and it still caused me problems. So I went back to a FrontSightBlock and plastic handguard. I still shoot the same groups as I did before and its lighter, more realible/less prone to failure. I would keep it setup the way you have it unless you can afford a very nice FF tube that you can trust.

    Previous setup:
    1021081616a.jpg
    1021081611.jpg

    new setup:
    0307111150.jpg
     
  5. supergenius

    supergenius 206 Active Member

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    I have the Spectre diamond YHM with a Troy LPGB and carbine gas... Love it. Solid, and like the "continuous rail" up top.

    IMAG0431-Copy.jpg
     
  6. nubus

    nubus Guest

    Check this out... YHM Forearm

    Works with the sight you have and covers the sight base.
    And BTW, we should have more in stock this week!
     
  7. RallySoob

    RallySoob Salem, OR Active Member

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    are these YHM rails mil-spec? My RRA A4 came with a commercial grade YHM FF rail I had to replace because some mil-spec attachments would not mount to it being the rails weren't up to spec.
     
  8. the puma

    the puma Oregon City Active Member

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    Too late. I ordered the full length FF handguard to replace the carbine length one. I did some googling and like the way the full length handguards work and look on the carbine barrel. I can't afford a DD or LaRue one (I know I just bought two YHM ones, but I'll sell the first one, recouping some cash), and I really like the fit, finish and design of the YHM Diamond handguard. I must say I'm impressed with the quality, especially given the comparatively low price point. I also ordered a YHM low profile gas block and handguard mount flip front sight.

    Having installed the carbine handguard, I'm not too worried about slippage or rotation, although I know it's certainly possible over time. I will inspect the rail from time to time to make sure it's aligned with the top rail of the reciever, which is easy to do. I also have the YHM spanner wrench, so DIY maintenance is easy.
     
  9. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    I ended up with that front sight system due to trades and a tight budget for this build. My preference would have been the pinned in Picatinny front gas rail and (matching the rear) MagPul front pop up sights. At some point I may make that swap. her hand guard is a two piece carbine length and not free floating and I will stick with that and maybe even swap for a carbon fiber guard because weight is at a premium for her gun. The YHM front sight not popping up + the heat issue you mention are definite minuses

    She has another carbine that is A2 config and could use some updating, so any parts not used for this one can migrate over there to her backup carbine

    Supergenius.. what is that barrel on your build?
     
  10. Ben Beckerich

    Ben Beckerich NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    its another sad day, when a man goes astray before you can reach him.

    rest in pieces, rifle...


    M4Carbine.net
     
  11. the puma

    the puma Oregon City Active Member

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    So, please tell me how you want MY rifle to be. I noticed a lot of built-up ARs on the M4Carbine.net home page, so I'm not sure what you're getting at. I didn't know I was supposed to make it your way.... ;)
     
  12. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    That's the beauty of the AR platform.. it's like Burger King
     
  13. RallySoob

    RallySoob Salem, OR Active Member

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    titsonritz...I'm not a fan of flip up FSB either but you can't just put any FSB on any bbl and my bbl came as a blank...to my knowledge the most reliable route I could take was the flip up FSB. I wanted an original FSB because it would have been 'most reliable' as far as staying true after a bump or whatever but that would require me to get a new bbl with a pinned FSB. But I agree with you, The original is best and the ARMS Flipup FSB is very attractive looking but I was in a hurry and scored this one for cheap. Also, the 1911 rail on the bottom of it fits the streamlight TL series lights perfectly, keeps everything light and compatible with my XDm pistol too. I really like this setup

    As far as non-milspec rails go I can't imagine investing money in aftermarket parts that aren't of mil-spec and of highest quality. Your better off keeping it stock and simple.

    KISS (keep it simple stupid) I lean towards this more than I did before. I used to want every add-on I could afford until I started buying them and finding I do better with less. I think a bonestock factory AR15 (preferably Mil-spec) with a light weight Red dot like an EOTech XP (+buis) is as good as it gets for all around use. Only time I ever needed a scope and bipod was when I would hunt sage rats...it helped alot but I'm still able to hit them without it all.

    Blitzkreig...his bbl looks like a fluted M4 cut, possibly SS...I'm also curoius to know the brand name. My fluted M4 bbl is a match grade 1/9 16" made by young mfg
     
  14. supergenius

    supergenius 206 Active Member

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    IDK, YHM spectre guard and Magpul MBUS Have me killing tennis balls at 100. Good enough for me (and i do not pretend to be a fantastic shot). If you tq the barrel nut correctly and loctite the anti rotation screws in the YHM it isnt going ANYWHERE.

    I like the rail system alot, especially for the price.

    Also of note is that my TROY Lo Pro block does not even have a HINT of carbon blowby (which speaks of the barrels machining as well obviously)

    blitz:

    Its a Stainless M4 (5.56) 14.5:" fluted 1:8 with pinned Troy Midevil brake (that may be being shed for a QD hider for easy can attachment :O) )


    Im not enough of a gun snob to need to spend 300 on a guard. I have a racecar that needs more money thrown at it on a regular basis :O).


    BTW OP: If you want to sell the Carbine YH gaurd, my cousin is looking for one and Id pick it up off you for him.
     
  15. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info, the M4 barrel I settled for is bad and I need a better alternate, and YHM barrels I want are all sold out at the moment.. BTW I have a very trick 600 HP street cobra with all race gear under the skin and I understand the money pit thing
     
  16. Ben Beckerich

    Ben Beckerich NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    all this is true, plus there's nothing to keep the handguard from loosening up on you.

    but more importantly, a clamp-on buis gas block can very easily turn the gun into a single-shot rifle. the only time clampon gas blocks are acceptable is if they're entirely covered by the handguard. having it double as a front sight just makes it even more likely to rotate.

    you can do whatever you want with your gun, holms... but i assume you want input, if you're posting up on an internet gun forum.
     
  17. the puma

    the puma Oregon City Active Member

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    Fair enough. I guess I need it spelled out for me like this! I am ditching the front sight gas block for a low profile slip-on one, and going with the full length handguard so it will completely cover up the gas block. I understand about the barrel nut loosening, but I think this will be fairly easy to spot since the upper rails align with the recieiver. Having a 'wide' railed handguard is not an issue for me, since I have very large hands.
     
  18. supergenius

    supergenius 206 Active Member

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    Ya my 94 Accord makes 750HP/575 TQ at the wheels, has OEM hubcaps on it, NSX brakes, a baby seat in it looks stock and runs M&H slicks 100 percent of the time. BIG turbo, Built motor, straightcut dog box tranny in it to make it work.

    Cant remember the name of the Barrel MFG. Ill look when I get home ;O0

    LMK if ya want to get rid of the guard.


    FWIW, I have big hands... The YHM rail is fine, I put ladder covers on the rails not the big round ones. Its perfect for me...
     
  19. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    XXL + size mitts here.. her carbine feels like a toy to me after the last 1.5 years shooting my accessorized PTR 91, so I never thought about that
     
  20. the puma

    the puma Oregon City Active Member

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    Got the full length handguard today and put it on. I would like to get some rail covers and I think it'll be done. I was able to move the Magpul AFG farther forward, which works for my long arms. It feels very comfortable.

    cell phone pic:
    85962724.jpg