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Second Wilson Combat .308 Build


LevelHead
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The parts for my second Wilson Combat (WC) build are arriving, so this time I want to make sure that everything's right *before* I bring it out so I don't repeat the problems from last time

This one's got a WC 16" Ranger barrel. Here are the specs: 

Recoil system will be the Armalite Carbine AR10REKIT01 kit recommended for my other build unless y'all recommend otherwise (assuming USPS can actually deliver the damn things). 

I haven't mounted the gas block yet, but from eyeballing it it looks like the tube is the perfect length and will end up about 3/4 of the way down the cam pin cutout in the upper. 

According to the chart in this post, it seems like this is good to go, but as always I look forward to your input. 

Thanks!

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So this barrel (#2) fails headspace using the new bolt and carrier (#2) - (close on go, close on no-go). 

Further testing: 

  • Rifle #1 passes with its bolt and carrier (close on go, no-close on no-go). This tells me that bolt/carrier #1 is OK in barrel #1
  • Tested bolt and carrier #2 in rifle #1 and it passes (close on go, no-close on no-go). This tells me that bolt/carrier #2 is OK in barrel #1
  • Tested bolt and carrier #1 in rifle #2 and it fails (close on go, close on no-go). This tells me that barrel #2 fails with both bolt/carriers

All tests performed with both extractors removed

Go/no-go gauges are Clymer for .308 Win which is what's stamped on both barrels. 

To summarize: both bolt/carriers fail on barrel #2 and both bolt/carriers pass on barrel #1

I'm open to performing other tests if you see a flaw in my testing or logic, but it looks to me like barrel #2 needs to go back. 

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More detailed post. I tried to edit the last one but it took to long and the system refused me: 

 

So this barrel (#2) fails headspace using the new bolt and carrier (#2) - (close on go, close on no-go). 

I now have two complete WC rifles so I can test parts between them. The first on is #1, the new one is #2. 

Complete testing: 

  • Barrel #2 fails with bolt/carrier #2  (close on go, close on no-go) - This tells me that either barrel #2 or bolt/carrier #2 is bad. 
  • Barrel #1 passes with bolt/carrier #1 (close on go, no-close on no-go) - This tells me that bolt/carrier #1 is OK in barrel #1
  • Barrel #1 passes with bolt/carrier #2 (close on go, no-close on no-go) - This tells me that bolt/carrier #2 is OK in barrel #1
    • Barrel #1 has passed with both bolt/carriers - Barrel #1 is presumed good
  • Barrel #2 fails with bolt/carrier #1  (close on go, close on no-go) - This tells me that barrel #2 fails with both bolt/carriers
    • Barrel #2 has now failed with both bolt/carriers - Barrel #2 is presumed bad

All tests performed with both extractors removed

Go/no-go gauges are Clymer .308 Win which is what's stamped on both barrels. 

To summarize: both bolt/carriers fail on barrel #2 and both bolt/carriers pass on barrel #1

I'm open to performing other tests if you see a flaw in my testing or logic, but it looks to me like barrel #2 needs to go back. 

 

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47 minutes ago, 98Z5V said:

I'd contact them, and send that barrel back.  Field gauges are for in-service weapons, that have been shot alot. 

Yeah, that's the plan. I'm annoyed now because I can't shoot it, I can't call them until Tuesday because Monday's a holiday, and if I send it back and get another it will be weeks until I see it. On top of that USPS lost my Armalite buffer kits so now I've got two complete WC rifles that I can't shoot. I anticipate that they'll both totally kick ass in the end, but what an uphill battle. 

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Had a weird conversation with WC today in which went like this: 

WC: "We don't headspace using gauges - we headspace using the bolt."

Me: "Are you telling me that you don't headspace using NATO or SAAMI gauges?"

WC: "We headspace using the bolt"

Me: "How about this, then: I have two WC bolts and it closes on no-go with one but not with the other while my first barrel performs properly with either."

WC: "Hang on.."

WC: "I just talked to the rifle manager (or something) and he said that if you're not happy send it in and we'll look at it."

 

Not a terribly satisfying conversation, and while it's great that they'll look at it, that means no rifle for another couple of weeks. Am I wrong for thinking that a brand new barrel closing on a no-go a problem? 

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I would tape a note to that barrel and say FAILED No-Go when you send it back.

I have bought two barrels in my life, both Faxon, and they both passed the go-no go routine perfectly.  That means I got lucky with the bolt I used and it also was within spec.  I have another bolt that failed (closed on no-go) and I did the scotch tape with that, and I figured the “Bad Bolt” was .002 out of spec.  It didn’t close on the Tape Stuck to the Clymer No-go gauge.  The bolt company used the Ol Field Gauge arguement.  It makes me sad that brass will stretch an extra .002 on the first shots with that “bad bolt”

I guess I could stick a piece of tape on all my new Brass that I buy (😳)

Good luck with getting a nice tight proper spec’d chamber...

My barrels and the good bolt were even from different manufacturers.

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
4 hours ago, LevelHead said:

Also since they seem to be sold out of most .308 barrels, I'm gonna try a Faxon based on what seem to be some good experiences around here. 

Don't leave Ballistic Advantage out of the mix.  I have several Faxons and a PILE of BA barrels.  I'll take a BA barrel any day of the week, but I'll always turn to Faxon for a profile I want, that BA doesn't make.  Hope that makes sense.  :thumbup:

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20 hours ago, 98Z5V said:

Don't leave Ballistic Advantage out of the mix.  I have several Faxons and a PILE of BA barrels.  I'll take a BA barrel any day of the week, but I'll always turn to Faxon for a profile I want, that BA doesn't make.  Hope that makes sense.  :thumbup:

I was literally just looking at BA barrels because they're on sale right now at Grayman: https://graymanindustries.com/ballistic-advantage/

 

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Just now, LevelHead said:

I was literally just looking at BA barrels because they're on sale right now at Grayman: https://graymanindustries.com/ballistic-advantage/

 

If they have a profile you like, you won't be disappointed.  BA is my first go-to, always.  I've had too much success with BA barrels.  I go towards Faxon as a backup, when I want (need) a profile that BA doesn't make.  Faxon is badass, but my first choice is always BA.  Hands down. 

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On 9/6/2022 at 2:09 PM, LevelHead said:

Had a weird conversation with WC today in which went like this: 

WC: "We don't headspace using gauges - we headspace using the bolt."

Me: "Are you telling me that you don't headspace using NATO or SAAMI gauges?"

WC: "We headspace using the bolt"

Me: "How about this, then: I have two WC bolts and it closes on no-go with one but not with the other while my first barrel performs properly with either."

WC: "Hang on.."

WC: "I just talked to the rifle manager (or something) and he said that if you're not happy send it in and we'll look at it."

 

Not a terribly satisfying conversation, and while it's great that they'll look at it, that means no rifle for another couple of weeks. Am I wrong for thinking that a brand new barrel closing on a no-go a problem? 

I’m surprised by this conversation. Don’t doubt you at all, but a refund is where I’d go too. 

I had a headspace problem with a Fulton Armory barrel and bolt. “Bolt won’t close on GO gauge.”

”Headspace gauges vary and we use Forster.”  So I buy a Forster headspace gauge and still no joy, although it did seem very close to closing on the second GO gauge.  (Note: I now have both Forster and Clymer 308 headspace gauges but can’t remember which came first - they might have been using a Clymer gauge)

”Send us the barrel and bolt and we will make it right.”  FA reamed a thousandth+ more out of the chamber and re-polished it very nicely. Bolt just closed on my first GO gauge and a tiny bit more loosely on the second GO gauge. I paid for shipping and second set of headspace gauges. Oh and turnaround was just about as fast as it could be. 
 

Was this ideal?  No but the end result is excellent, and I never felt like I was talking to someone who didn’t build rifles. 
 

P.S. I was going to use a Wilson Combat 16” Ranger barrel for a new upper but they went out of stock just before I finalized my plans. Your story makes me happy in an odd way - 16” Faxon Big Gunner barrel should arrive today. 

Edited by MaineMan2
Faxon barrel inbound
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18 hours ago, 98Z5V said:

If they have a profile you like, you won't be disappointed.  BA is my first go-to, always.  I've had too much success with BA barrels.  I go towards Faxon as a backup, when I want (need) a profile that BA doesn't make.  Faxon is badass, but my first choice is always BA.  Hands down. 

BA Hanson 16" .308 on the way for $199 shipped. Can't beat that!

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