So, what will happen with a bunch of Ar-15, AK-shaped, and various pistols if you pull it all out onto the ground for 12 days and take almost a quarter of a million rounds of ammunition? Yes, anything can happen! In general, we took 22 people, instructors and doctors, just in case. This is not some kind of semi-promotional “test for survivability”, we really tried to recreate the most crap conditions that sometimes occur. And even if these are not the harshest conditions for the “gunner-gun” ligament, then surely you cannot call them “sterile.”
We decided to settle on a shooting range in Tennessee, in the spring. The conditions here are close to the jungle. It rained almost 10 days out of 12. So there was no shortage of mud baths, there was dirt everywhere. Each cadet was covered with it by the end of the day from head to toe. She covered the shops and weapons evenly. And that means finding a path inside of it, to the giblets. And here the fun began.
The first surprises of “dirty” workouts
Before we dive into the details, I will say something. Most likely, less than 5% of people who have ever bought weapons and equipment – tortured them to the fullest, fell into difficult conditions. Most of them are slightly more reliable than others, but everything breaks down.
“My rifle is wedging!” The cadets will complain. “Keep firing!” – I will answer him, and explain – how. The main goal of the courses is to teach people how to act when things are really bad. Even with a dead weapon there is always something to do – throw grenades, drag wounded and give them first aid, pick up another weapon, finally. The fact that the rifle in your hands refused – this is not the end.
“This has never happened before,” say the cadets. “Really? Have you ever landed 1000+ rounds of ammunition per day, in the pouring rain, so the handguard is ready to melt, comfortably settling down in a mud bath 15 cm deep? ”I ask. As you might guess, most of them will say no. Those who got into such situations know what to expect. For example, such a trifle – Velcro Velcro does not work when dirty (by the way for this reason, on a great variety of army equipment, banal buckles are honored). Open unloading with sticking shops of course look Tacticool and allow you to recharge faster, but bad luck – in such conditions they are clogged with dirt even if they are stuck down the neck. For many, it was a surprise that neither AK nor AR are willing to work, being completely clogged with mud. Just imagine!
In some exercises, cadets shot 10-12 stores in one go. As you might guess, the weapon becomes quite hot in this form. It flushes and steams in the mud and in the rain. And in these conditions, the problem of lack of lubrication. And even its periodic application does not help much. Personally, I use high-temperature bearing grease (yeah, like on M1 Garand) for all of my trunks. It costs 3 bucks a pound. Many turn up her nose until you have to shoot. She is not afraid of temperatures and does not run away like butter. I used it from Iraq to Vancouver and had no problems.
The most frequent problems encountered in training
Pistols, like rifles – had their own problems. Dirt found a crack. Pistols Glock proved to be bad, all the others – even worse. Of course, there was normal wear and tear, which was expected, but there were more serious damage. The cadets treated the pollution simply by rinsing the weapon in a more or less clear stream. The method is barbaric, but in such conditions it is not up to sentiment.
There were problems with AKMoids, which leads us to the idea that they are not as reliable as we rubbed. Yes, they are good, but any mechanism can be broken. And we broke. A bunch of cases where the dirt fell into the chamber. Broken trunk due to clogged dirt. Burst linings due to water that has got under them and turned into heat from steam. Torn off the pin of the vapor tube, broke off the tooth under the store, and a few jumped springs of the firing pin. There were strange for AK glitches, like a sleeve, clogged between the bolt and the top cover. And a glitch with a jammed sleeve, which managed to get under the shutter and jammed it.
The main problem was the shops. For all – clogged with dirt meant a complete failure of further exploitation. But some managed to mercilessly glyukovat from small fractions, scuffing on the walls and so on. Consider, by the way, that AKMoids rivet a lot of countries and not all of them are interchangeable. Chinese are not very well stand on Romanian, etc. All stores for the AP15 sucks the dirt, but the R-mages seem to have shown themselves generally better than others.
So, some practical recommendations if you want to keep your weapon efficient.
- Cleaning and maintenance. Do not limit yourself to only removing dirt and soot when cleaning weapons. Check all nodes for operability. It is better to spend a little time in comfort, than to be with a useless paddle in the field.
- Use thread lock. First of all, this applies to accessories. However, one day we lost Eotek, a flashlight that had fallen off from a weapon, and one AK lost its handle. Yes, and spare mechanical sights were lost without an account.
- Grease People tend to overdo the pistols with grease, and too sour lubricate rifles. And yes, God forbid you put lubricant in the belly of the store, or in the channel of the drummer. Follow the instructions exactly as stated in the instructions. AR – should not “ooze”, like sprats, for normal work. And regardless of your beliefs – Glock and AK also love lubrication and care.
- Change the return springs in time. The fact that it is still strong enough to bring the bolt back does not mean that it is strong enough to withstand the impact without allowing the guides to be broken. Again – follow the manufacturer’s advice.
- Get rid of them if they are, or just don’t put them on – no “precision improvers”, recoil buffers, and other rubber and plastic gadgets in the guts. Not only do they not work in these conditions, they are also prone to self-destruction at the most inopportune moment, hammering the giblets of your weapon in the most inappropriate places with rubber or plastic scraps. Handles “orthopedic oblip” on pistols – what should be thrown out of them first thing. As well as customized USM, in the title of which there is the word “target” or “sports”.
- Check out the gear. Even if your only mission is “hidden carrying,” check the cartridges, the shops, whether the sight is not shot down, whether the mobile phone is in place and whether it is charged. In general – every little thing. This is the cheapest life insurance.
(c) SWAT magazine, sponsored by James Yeager