Piston vs Gas uppers

Discussion in 'Black Rifle Forum' started by wolf19r, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. Pretty much says it all.

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  2. My ARs are gas. I like it like that.

  3. RMTactical

    RMTactical www.AR15pro.net

    Pistons are a gimmick in the AR15.
  4. Actually, just keep it lubed and you won't have any problems. One of the most common misconceptions regarding the AR platform is that they must be clean to be reliable. It just isn't true. A very dirty rifle will run reliably as long as it's wet.

    To answer the OP:

    A piston on an AR replaces one standard reliable part (gas tube) with several non-standard proprietary parts, more parts with the potential to fail. It also add weight out front where it's very noticeable. Carrier tilt can also an issue with a piston.

    DI ARs are as accurate as they are with little felt recoil and muzzle rise because of the in line nature of the barrel, bolt carrier, and buffer/spring. Adding a reciprocating piston above the line of the bore negates this concept as designed.

    A piston AR may be cleaner, but as I mentioned ARs don't need to be clean to be reliable, so it's really a solution to a non-existent problem.

    These are my thoughts, YMMV.
    #24 Captains1911, Feb 10, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2011

  5. My 249 ran 30rd mags through great. Weird, I know.

    30rd. mags for a suppression weapon is STUPID AS HELL. How can one lay down sustained suppressive fire w/ 30rd mags? You cant. Beta mags would play havoc on the front of body armor. Talk about front heavy and awkward. Id like to see someone go prone w/ a full ammo load in beta mags.
    #25 mjkeat, Feb 10, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2011
  6. Not really much cleaner. Just dirty in different areas. I probably wont ever purchase a piston gun again. DIs work just as well for my semi only self.
  7. faawrenchbndr

    faawrenchbndr DirtyThirty fan

    I'll leave pistons to the AKs, & gas to the ARs.
    I've been shooting those for 25 years, no need to change now.
  8. Its no secret that I love gas piston AR's. I have a few lengthy threads here at GT stating the fact. I to have been shooting d.i.'s for over 2 decades (since 1989 when I first joined the service.) I love d.i's but I love not cleaning the star chamber more. I'd gladly clean the piston and piston tube vs the star chamber in the receiver. That right there is enough justification for me. It may not be a good enough reason for anybody else but guess what ....I dont care lol.

    Gun snobbery is rampant on the internet. I think shooters should just buy what makes them happy and what fits their needs and what works for them.

    The haters will tell you that gas piston AR's are too heavy, they have more parts to fail,they experience carrier tilt, arent accurate, parts are hard to find, the design is not standardized, they are not true mil-spec, that its a solution looking for a problem that doesnt exist and so on and so forth.

    Some of which is true and many of which is NOT true...and all of which I dont care. I am not saying gas pistons are an improvement or that they are better...all I can say is that I no longer have to use a dental pick or special shaped brush to clean that dang star chamber and I dont have to "run the bolt wet" and thats worth every penny to me.

    On a side note - While I was at the media day shoot in Boulder City last month Surefire had 2 d.i. rifles for us to shoot to test out their 60 & 100 round magazines. These d.i. rifles were getting the snot shot out of them! They held up a few thousand round and a few hours of consistent shooting until they finally needed to stop and lube the bolt due to malfunctions. I even got video of the guns going down due to the fouling. I didnt plan seeing it, I was just there when it happened. The d.i's held up for hours just fine until they malfunctioned which is good enough for me for home defense or SHTF I would think since I dont think I will be putting 2000 rounds down range in a real world situation? But they did have dirty bolt issues..thats a fact.

    Meanwhile at the HK booth, they had their MR556A1 out for us to shoot all day.(civilian version of the HK416 gas piston gun) I asked when they cleaned it last and he said it has not been cleaned or oiled all day and no one had any malfunctions. Was he telling the truth? Who knows?

    All I can tell you is what I personally know and personally experienced. Take it for what thats worth?
    #28 mixflip, Feb 11, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2011
  9. That in the red is true though, heres some food for thought, on running a piston AR dry, excellerated wear, yes when the steel bolt carrier runs back and forth under pressure, it wears the aluminum upper. Sure the factories dont worry about as they can just toss it and replace it, but who wants to destroy a rifle by not lubing it? Its not allot different thant aluminum pistons in a cast iron block, sure there is not as much heat, but you still need it lubed or do you run your engine without oil? The biggest reason a AK is so damn reliable is, it is built to far looser tollarances than the AR, and this is done for a number of reasons, 1. conscripts in Soviet service were less than well educated in firearms, kerosene or diesel was the solvent, with motor oil the lubricant. 2. ease of manufacturer by those who are not well educated, and are more or less required to work there. 3. Soviet machinery of the era, was not as well made or have the abilty that their western counterparts had or possesed.
    #29 mstennes, Feb 11, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2011
  10. I think you are jumping to extreme conclusions arent you? Exactly where did I say I run my piston gun "dry with no oil what so ever?" I said I dont need to run it "wet" meaning that I dont have to continue adding oil that has been burnt off due to all the hot propellent gases that get dumped into the chamber after every shot like on my d.i. gun. That heat burns off the oil on the bolt (often called coking) and it also excellerates the deteriation of the rubber gas o-rings on a d.i.

    So my point is that I dont have to worry about carrying around a bottle of oil in my pocket and adding oil to the bolt intermitently through out the day and I dont have to worry about worn out gas o-rings.

    Yes I oil the bolt, and at the end of the day my bolt is still oily since no heat was ever transffered to the bolt and no carbon fouling was ever deposited in the star chamber. I dont understand why the d.i. die hards cant understand why folks like me like this feature?

    I even have a video that I took after my long day out shooting just to show the benefits of it. No its not perfect. No gun is perfect, but I do like the benefits of my piston gun over my d.i. If you dont agree with my dicission...I dont know what to tell you?

    Btw, all that was said in the red...is not all true. I can post a nice list that shows that its hype & hate, if you like, since I own both gas piston and d.i.?
    #30 mixflip, Feb 11, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2011
  11. wolf19r

    wolf19r Problem Solved!

    So what type of lube is best on DI guns? Grease, just standard gun oil, etc...?
  12. I own both also, and the explain to me how parts are not a problem??? You have to go to vendor specific for your piston AP. Explain to me how piston parts are mil spec??? Who makes a mil spec piston??? There are none??? A AR was designed as DI, adding a piston is a compromise, no way around the fact you have to comprimise to make things fit with in the demensions your working. My LWRC piston brings nothing to the table other than easier cleaning. Read about filthy 14, seriously, I have shot over 1000 rds without lubing on more than one occasion, if I my life was depending on no failures and had shot a 1000 rounds I'm in the wrong place and chances of survival are pretty slim. But thats not what were talkiing about, you dont have to run a DI wet, just a quick shot and your good to go if you want to not clean it.

  13. Piston systems use more parts which is just more to break? In some systems maybe but not all. Here is my piston system. Count the parts that are solely piston related. Theres 7.

    Now count each and every d.i. part that is solely d.i. related. Theres 8.

    My piston gun has equal or less parts than my d.i. gun. Myth busted there I'd say?

    Piston guns are heavier than d.i. guns. My piston gun weighs 6lbs 9oz. Colt AR's (for example) can weigh 5.5lbs to 8.5lbs depending on what parts they use to build it. Clearly 6lbs 9oz is not significantly heavier than a d.i. In fact my piston gun is lighter than the rifle I carried when I was active duty.

    Piston guns arent as accurate as d.i. guns. My BZO with irons is 200 yards. I dare any bad guy to walk into my killzone and test out the infamous myth of piston guns being less accurate. Look, my rifle is no bullseye competitor. Thats not what I want or need it to do. I am not a bench shooter so I have no need to put a hole inside of a hole. If you need to do that then get a gun designed to do that. I'll be the first to tell you my piston gun isnt designed to do that. Get the right tool for the job as they say.

    My piston gun comes with a lifetime warranty. Does your d.i? Not many guns today, piston or d.i. offer that kind of warranty. I picked mine because of the lifetime warranty, its light weight, it robust simple piston design and its price point of $1000. I am creeping up on almost 2k of ammo through my piston gun with "zero" malfunctions. I wouldnt trust my life to any gun that didnt pass my personal tests d.i or piston. This gun passes.

    No its not perfect, no its not mil-spec, but it works for me. I could care less that alot of people dont like piston guns but please dont spread misinformation on piston guns just to push your agenda and bias. Please use facts to bash piston guns..not emotion. On that note, stay safe and have a nice day.

    P.S. I should be happy people hate on gas piston guns so it will drive the demand and price way down. Yeah piston guns suck. Do not believe any of what I just posted lol!!!
    #33 mixflip, Feb 12, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2011
  14. I own both....3 LWRC's and 2 Noveske's, and they both work. The "gimmick" thing is ridiculous (no offense gentlemen, but the "gimmick" thing was relevant 2 or 3 years ago, not any longer.....because the piston was newer and if I had to guess most of you claiming the "gimmick" thing are over the age of 40 and very skeptical to anything new for your trusty DI AR's) OP you should go with what options YOU prefer. That is what it's all about.....OPTIONS! Here is an extensive review on an older LWRC rifle, before any of the new OPTIONS (which are now standard) were available on their rifles.


    I've only owned and shot LWRC's, so I can't speak for any other piston AR's. I have an M6A2 with the older 2 piece carrier with over 7,000 rounds through it, and it has no carrier tilt issues, and the accuracy is close to my Noveske's (for what I do with them, no bench shooting for me). With that being said, I'm not against DI either. Both of my Noveske's have been flawless, and I'm looking to get a BCM gov't 20" upper. Go with either/or...and you'll be a happy camper! sheeeshhh....
  15. LWRC is the best way to go if going the piston route.
  16. My point was there is no military specifications for a piston system, if you really want to split hairs, top teir manufacturers are mil spec, BUT they modify the fcg to ar so yea their no longer milspec, my other point is if you break a piston part, you have to go the manufacturerer of your piston system, you just cant get what ever from where ever. Oiling you still need to throw a shot or should before going shooting reguardless if its piston or di. Hey I own a piston, also own di's. all I'm saying is the piston brings nothing more to the table other than easier cleaning
  17. I agree 100% if a BCG or OP rod breaks I do have to go to the specific manufacturer for replacement parts since not everyone makes a standard piston BCG and op rod.

    But I still want to know how many broken BCG's have you ever personally seen or even heard of? Do BCG's really break that often? How many op rods in any piston gun break? On any piston platform for that matter??? I am not claiming they will never break but in reality...of all the parts that could break on a gun those 2 parts are way low on the list of "commonly broken" parts. Thats all I am saying.

    When I see top tier companies like H&K and Colt and Remington and Sabre Defense and Barrett and KAC etc etc all making a piston AR's... I can no longer agree that piston AR's are just a "gimmick" and they dont bring anything more than just a "clean chamber" to the table.

    I said it before and I'll say it again. Both have their strength and weakness's. There is no such thing as a perfect do-it-all gun.
    #38 mixflip, Feb 13, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2011

  18. True! Colt did look into a piston back in the 70's or 80's I cant remember exactly when, they actually built up a few of them, the problem was they didnt increase reliabilty enough to justify them. The reason now is pure financial, its to get more sales. The bolt carrier does not know if its hot gas, a piston or a hammer for that matter, point is the M16/AR platforms number one cause of malfunctions is bad magazines, folled by worn extractors, debris problems are cuased by its tighter tollarances which effects both DI's and Pistons, the only way around that is a new platform aka the SCAR, ACR.
    #39 mstennes, Feb 13, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2011
  19. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CqRwx4wtmms

    Just found this vid interesting. Nothing more.

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