Sunday, January 30, 2011

Alex Robinson Comments Re: The XCR Rifles and Customer Service

I was reading The Firearm Blog post on the 7.62x51NATO XCR, and there was a comment left with a link to this post on the XCR Forum from Alex Robinson, the man behind Robinson Armament Company.

"The fact is that almost every 'new' rifle out there is based on someone else's work.   The XCR is not.  It is truly unique.   Yes, it borrows some concepts from other rifles, but each part had to be designed without copying anything else to get the result we wanted.   In short, Robinson Armament dared to challenge the establishment with a very different rifle.

Robinson Armament's efforts should have been embraced.  However, from the beginning, we have (sic, sentence structure) nothing but crap on the internet.  I distinctly remember posts on shortly after I announced the XCR.  The post (sic) were that it was "Vaporware".  Other posts exclaimed that it would never be built or never work as promised.  Such posts made it very difficult to get the XCR off the ground and made people very skeptical of the new XCR.

Other posts exclaimed that we were going out of business.  It seem (sic) that the whole rifle world was against us.  I have often wondered why so much negativity for a new weapon platforms (sic)?  It is as though people really don't want any new platforms.   Thee (sic) people claim to want the best but all they do is whine.  It is no wonder to me that others don't venture out with new designs - they are shot down before they begin."

"First, when you call for service, be polite.  If you are not polite to my staff, I guaranty you will have a pleasant experience.  Remember the old saying, 'You can attract more files (sic) with honey that (sic) with vinegar.'  If you call with an attitude, my staff has been instructed to put you on the back burner.  If you are nice and polite, you will get quicker service."

"Second, please read the manual carefully.  I know it's boring but there's important information there.  Many people do not understand that you need to set the gas correctly for function and durability.  It's really quite simple - put it on the setting that throws the brass 8 to 15 feet from the rifle for any given ammo.  Do not just leave the gas system on the highest setting,  If you do, for some ammo it will kick like hell, throw your brass 40 feet, give you trigger slap, and damage your recoil buffer (a cheap part).

Third, please send us the following information:

Name, Address, Email and Cell number;
Serial Number;
Signed Copy of your warranty Registration found in the last pages of the Operator's Manual; and
A complete description of the problem, BE BRIEF.  If you write and essay about your vast knowledge of firearms base (sic) on your long time relationship with your AR-15, we won't read it.

We will authorize the return to us of part or all of your firearm.  WE DO NOT PAY FOR SHIPPING TO US.

Fourth, if you post a bunch of whiny petty negative stuff here or anywhere, I guaranty very slow service.  I have made that a policy.  Yes, we've made lots of mistakes with service but that is behind us."

"We appreciate those who stand by and support us.  They are true patriots.  We have to question the motives of those who continue to tear us down on this forum.  They cannot stop us. Their petty feeble minds are easily exposed.  The XCR will gain momentum until it covers the whole earth.  There is no other platform like it and it is the best."


Although I think the Robinson XCR is a great design, I had serious concerns about parts availability, and customer service.  I decided that buying an XCR was a risk that I didn't want to take.  I had no idea that the customer service situation was as bad as this.

Tapco AK G2 Trigger Recall

I just found out about this recently.  Most of the bad parts may have been scrapped by now, but for safety's sake. . .


We have determined that during the period between October 1, 2008 and December 31, 2008, G2 trigger groups may have contained disconnectors that have a disconnector spring hole that is too deep. Use of these could result in a rifle malfunction and should be checked immediately.
The correct depth of the hole is between .383 to .420. Any disconnector with a depth of .421 or more should be returned for exchange.
NOTE: The spring hole has a conical point and the measurement should be made from the shoulder where the spring will rest, not the point of the hole.

Returns should be sent to:

TAPCO G2 Return/Exchange
3615 Kennesaw N. Ind. Pkwy.
Kennesaw, GA 30144

Or, contact your Sales Account Manager for additional information

Thank you,


I guess I should take apart my WASR-10 (now sporting a G2 single-hook trigger), and my Interarms Tantal (which came with a G2 double-hook trigger). Not looking forward to taking apart Sid The Saiga-12 though. The Bolt-Hold-Open lever and spring make reassembling the Saiga lower a huge pain in the rear.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Michigan Concealed Carry Poll

Should concealed weapons be allowed in churches, arenas and bars?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Other
'Yes' is winning by a pretty narrow margin.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

NYDailyNews Gun Poll

Link To Poll

This one is not going well, please hit it.
Obama must man up on guns -- take the political heat and fight for sane limits to firearm sales.
What do you think of current gun laws in the United States?
  • Current laws are too strict. Any infringement upon gun owners' rights is an infringement upon the 2nd amendment.
  • Current laws are not strict enough. We need to regulate access to deadly weapons.
  • Not sure

What's a 31-bullet clip?  Some kind of reloading tool, I guess?   :P

Lone Wolf Glock Frame Available. . . Finally

Lone Wolf Timberwolf Frame

A while back, a couple years ago maybe, I reported that Lone Wolf Distributors was working on an aftermarket frame for Glock pistols, having already made a variety of slides for Glocks.  Well they've finally released the frame for sale, which they call the Timberwolf.  The frame is a serialized part, and needs to be transferred by a licensed dealer, like any firearm bought online, obviously.  Lone Wolf has posted information on what you need to do to order and pick up the frame on the website (EDIT: Actually, I wasn't able to open the PDF file linked).

The Timberwolf frame features:
  • Two interchangable backstraps
  • Rounded trigger guard
  • Extended "beavertail"
  • Round magazine catch button
  • "Improved" checkering and "rail system"
  • "Higher grip angle," which I imagine means that you can get the web of your shooting hand up higher on the grip
Included with the Timberwolf frame:
  • Round mag catch
  • SF trigger housing
  • Two grip backstraps
The frame fits 3rd Gen. large frame 9mm/.40S&W/.357SIG Glocks, i.e. models 17, 17L, 22, 24, 31, 34, 35, and 37.

They have it listed at $199.99, which I don't think is too bad really, considering that Glock will not sell you just a frame, without the side and barrel and all the rest of the pistol.  May be something to look into if you like Glocks, but your hands are too small for the Glock grip frame.  From the thread on GlockTalk, it sounds like they will be releasing compact frames, and large 10mm/.45ACP frames sometime in the future.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Archangel G36 Conversion Kit For Ruger 10/22

Marauder Stock Ad From Guns Magazine

The ProMag/Archangel guys have another interesting Ruger 10/22 stock.  Obviously, it converts a 10/22 action into an HK G36 look-alike.  

I don't know a whole lot about this yet.  The ad was in the new issues of Guns and American Handgunner magazine that I just got in the mail a few days ago.  There's no links to the kit on the Archangel website, although it is listed at $200 on the ProMag website (no pictures or info).  I haven't been able to find much information on the kit, and only one SHOT show picture.

The stock kit is listed at $155.97 on the Sportsman's Depot webstore, but the kits haven't been released yet.

A few handy enthusiasts have been cramming 10/22 actions into the plastic bodies of airsoft G36s for a few years.  I remember a YouTube video showing how it's done.  Someone's finally stepped up to produce a drop-in stock to do the same thing.  I hope that the G36 pattern magazine is high-capacity, single-column magazine to feed the 10/22 action, and not just a huge prosthetic to cover a 10-round Ruger rotary mag.  I also hope that the scope mount on the kit stock is somehow firmly attached to the 10/22 receiver inside, so these things have a chance at being resonably accurate.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

ACR Review, Part 3

Previous Entries
Some Bushmaster ACR Observations (Part 1)
Bushmaster ACR Observations, Part 2

(I updated them, so that you can blow the photos up to fill the screen with a click.  PITA, because Blogger still isn't user friendly when you try to post photos with captions.  The line-spacing goes all wonky.)

Rapid Fire Testing
I've had the ACR out for a couple of rapid fire sessions.  The rifle continues to impress me.

The first session, I had the ACR out along with my WASR (7.62x39mm Romanian AK).  The ACR definitely has less recoil than the 7.62mm AK, even though the AK has a recoil buffer and muzzle brake.  The second session, I had the ACR out along with my LMT M4, with both rifles having essentially the same barrel profile and flash hider.  I still don't think that the recoil of ACR is different enough to even be noticeable when compared to a similarly equipped AR.

The heat-shielded polymer handguards seem to do a really good job.  After a 3 magazines, the gas block was HOT, but I could only feel a little warmth coming through the handguards.  There is a Magpul MVG mounted on the handguard of the rifle I'm testing, as well as a Magpul MOE short rail for mounting a weapon light.  I still think the handguard is a bit short, but it's significantly better than a 7" AR handguard.

The Recall
The rifle did double on me, once.  I was shooting Wolf steel-cased ammo, and this particular ACR hasn't been sent in for the recall service yet.  I have noticed that the primers aren't seated as deeply in the steel cases as they usually are in brass cases, which I believe is part of the problem.  I've put several hundred rounds of brass-cased ammo through the ACR without any issues whatsoever.

I had said that the issue that caused the recall was likely not due to the firing pin.  As it turns out, I was wrong.  Return spring or not, for whatever reason, the firing pin seems to be the issue.  There were several reports of Acres slam-firing in the days prior to the recall.  The original firing pin/return spring combo will leave a fairly significant dent in the primer after chambering a round; even more of a dent than a AR-15/M-16 will leave.  I guess I was wrong about the Lancer Magazines, and I was wrong about the ACR firing pin.

Although I have primarily used PMags, I've run a couple more D&H brand G.I. aluminum mags (with Magpul followers), and the ACR continues to run just fine.  I even loaded the G.I. magazines to the full 30-round capacity, and was able to get the magazine locked in, and the bolt stripped the top round with zero hesitation, both of which are sometimes an issue with AR rifles.  The magazine well is fairly loose and everything is dropping free.

I still think the stock and pistol grip feel a bit small, but when I actually shoot the rifle, I don't notice it.  I have the same issue with the finger grooves on the Glock 19; just holding it, it feels a bit off, but I don't notice it when actually using the pistol.  I'm going to call this a non-issue, on both cases.

Price and Model Availability Update
Pricewise, there have been some new developments.  Bushmaster has lowered the retail prices for the ACRs, and I'm hearing that you can find the basic model for as low as $1500 if you look around.  The price from Cheaper Than Dirt is somewhere around $1800, if memory serves.

Not sure if the ACR is available yet with the basic polymer handguard and folding/collapsing stock yet, but this configuration is shown in the new Bushmaster catalog.  Bushmaster reps are telling people that 10.5", 14.5", and 18" barrels should be available by the end of the year, along with 1 turn in 7" twist barrels also.

What's Next
Next up for my ACR testing is some 100 yard accuracy tests, but that will take a little while.  I'll try out some 75 and 77 grain bullets to see how the 1 in 9" twist barrel will do with those.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Kel-Tec SU-16/SU-22 Pistol Grip and AR Stock Adapter

I guess I'm a couple or few years late on this, but I didn't find out until recently.  The Kel-Tec rifles don't get a whole lot of attention.

Kel-Tec is selling pistol grip lowers and AR-15 stock adapters for SU-16 and SU-22 rifles.  Link to pistol grip lower and AR stock adapter in Kel-Tec store - currently $94.40.  Also available with collapsible CAR-15/XM177 stock for $129.  The pistol grip compromises the ability of the rifles to fold into a compact little package, but it makes the rifles a little more egonomic, and a little less goofy looking.

Why do I even care?  The SU-16 rifles are quite lightweight (about 5 pounds with the origional stock), and have a long-stroke piston operating system (sort of similar to an SKS or AK-47).  With the right ACE stock adapters (they seem to be having website problems at the moment), you could put a side-folding stock on, which you can't do with 99% of AR-15 rifles.  The SU-16 rifles are also relatively inexpensive.  I can definately see how this might be an attractive solution to some people looking for an "evil black rifle."

You can find some more information on the pistol grip/stock conversion kit in this forum thread where I got the picture I posted above.  I'm sure if you did a search on the forum, you could find more threads. SU-16 information - in case you want to brush up on the Kel-Tec rifles

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Lubricants for Firearms?

There has been a bit of a debate over gun oil and grease in the Black Rifle Forum on GlockTalk.  One post has a link to this lubricants article by Grant Cunningham, which I found to be very interesting.

What about greases - do we even need them? You bet! I use the General Rule of Lubrication: oil for rotating parts, grease for sliding parts that carry a load. In firearms, grease is most appropriate for any part interaction that has a scraping (aka "shear") type of action, and will be subjected to pressure or shock. What kinds of parts are we talking about? Slide rails, bolt carriers, and sears - especially double-action sears.

One product that scores pretty well in corrosion testing is also the readily available and dirt cheap. It also has good migration, a good boundary lubrication package, is the right weight (thickness) for general firearms use, doesn't oxidize over long periods of storage, and is compatible with a wide range of metals and plastics. In addition, it is recommended by at least one real degreed firearms engineer! Just what is this miracle elixir??

Dexron-type Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF). That's right, plain ol' ATF.
For such things as autoloader slides and rifle bolts, Lubriplate "SFL" NLGI #0 grease is my choice. In my testing it's proven itself superior as a general lubricant. It is white, aluminum-based, low odor, has superb boundary lubricants, and is designed specifically for use in environments that encounter a huge temperature range. It's also resistant to water washout and acid/alkali environments, has great shear resistance, and doesn't oxidize like lithium greases will. As an all-around grease I've found nothing better. It's available from, in their online store. It comes in a 14oz can which will last you for years - no matter how many guns you have!
If there's benzene in motor oil, you really shouldn't get that on your hands.  I'll have to remember to put on some gloves next time I do an oil change.

As I said in my cleaning article, I've pretty much given up on "miracle gun lube."  Although I'm sure that Slip 2000 and TW-25 work very well, they are very expensive, if you break everything down to a dollars per ounce figure.