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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I picked up a Magpul edition Colt LE6920 last week at Wal-Mart, mostly because it was there. The Magpul stuff wasn't especially appealing (although I have to admit that the handguards are very comfortable (reminds me a little bit of how good the old triangular guards felt), but it was what they had, and I'd already promised myself quite some months ago that if I ever happened to be in a Wal-Mart (I rarely go), and if they happened to have ay 6920's for around a grand, I should just go ahead and get one. I'm not going to post pictures; if you've seen one, you've seen them all.

Anyway, although I'm no stranger to the AR platform or the M4 variant in particular (two tours in Iraq), as I'm sure many of you do whenever you acquire a new Colt, I spent some time perusing forums and blogs that talk about AR's. And all of the talk about the "must haves" recommended by the "experts" is starting to annoy me just a little. I can understand all of the interest in some of the accessories available in the same way I appreciate custom stocks or better sights on a good pistol. But all of the interest in H2 buffers, buffer springs, crane O-rings, etc. strikes me as being eerily similar to the market-driven interest in full-length guide rods, heavier recoil springs, and shock buffs in a 1911--unneccessary and even sometimes detrimental modifications to what is already a quality factory firearm.

I have over 24 years in the military and have deployed with both a standard M16A2 and a Colt M4 at different times. I have never experienced a single malfunction with any rifle I've been issued. Shortly after arriving in country with the M4, we were issued stiffer springs and inserts for our M4 extractors as this had been identified by then as a necessary modification. Mine had worked just fine before that, but I dutifully changed it out and continued to have trouble-free performance from my carbine. The only time I saw anyone from my unit experiencing trouble from his M4 was when he was playing around with some 100 round Beta Mags that he'd had shipped over to him.

The AR-15 has become the most popular rifle in America, and its market is a lucrative one indeed--as demonstrated by the ever-increasing numbers of manufacturers getting into the game. And the accessory market is almost overwhelming in its diversity. Some of it is pretty nifty, too. But I can't help but think that most of the "necessary" modifications recommended (buffers and springs) is just so much market-driven hype. I have a hard time believing that every brand-new Colt needs to have its parts changed out in order for it to be reliable and/or not shoot itself to pieces prematurely.
 

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Well said. I agree with you. I'm old school, I had a friend killed by having his flashlight in front of him looking for a burglar late one night. The bad guy shot at the light killing Ray Kovar with a round to the heart. Kovar was carrying a 6 inch Python and all that is known is he got off all six shots, shooting the bad guys trigger finger off. There were two other officers on the scene at the time of the shooting. I have never liked the rail systems on rifles or sidearms. I will never have anything added to mine. Thanks for your service. Welcome home. Dennis
 

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So I picked up a Magpul edition Colt LE6920 last week at Wal-Mart, mostly because it was there. The Magpul stuff wasn't especially appealing (although I have to admit that the handguards are very comfortable (reminds me a little bit of how good the old triangular guards felt), but it was what they had, and I'd already promised myself quite some months ago that if I ever happened to be in a Wal-Mart (I rarely go), and if they happened to have ay 6920's for around a grand, I should just go ahead and get one. I'm not going to post pictures; if you've seen one, you've seen them all.

Anyway, although I'm no stranger to the AR platform or the M4 variant in particular (two tours in Iraq), as I'm sure many of you do whenever you acquire a new Colt, I spent some time perusing forums and blogs that talk about AR's. And all of the talk about the "must haves" recommended by the "experts" is starting to annoy me just a little. I can understand all of the interest in some of the accessories available in the same way I appreciate custom stocks or better sights on a good pistol. But all of the interest in H2 buffers, buffer springs, crane O-rings, etc. strikes me as being eerily similar to the market-driven interest in full-length guide rods, heavier recoil springs, and shock buffs in a 1911--unneccessary and even sometimes detrimental modifications to what is already a quality factory firearm.

I have over 24 years in the military and have deployed with both a standard M16A2 and a Colt M4 at different times. I have never experienced a single malfunction with any rifle I've been issued. Shortly after arriving in country with the M4, we were issued stiffer springs and inserts for our M4 extractors as this had been identified by then as a necessary modification. Mine had worked just fine before that, but I dutifully changed it out and continued to have trouble-free performance from my carbine. The only time I saw anyone from my unit experiencing trouble from his M4 was when he was playing around with some 100 round Beta Mags that he'd had shipped over to him.

The AR-15 has become the most popular rifle in America, and its market is a lucrative one indeed--as demonstrated by the ever-increasing numbers of manufacturers getting into the game. And the accessory market is almost overwhelming in its diversity. Some of it is pretty nifty, too. But I can't help but think that most of the "necessary" modifications recommended (buffers and springs) is just so much market-driven hype. I have a hard time believing that every brand-new Colt needs to have its parts changed out in order for it to be reliable and/or not shoot itself to pieces prematurely.
In my day, we trained with M-14s in recruit (maggot) training. Then with the M-16A1 for I.T.B. ;)
 

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Feed, fire, eject, load....
The thing must go 'bang', and ought to have reasonable accuracy.
If it does that, I am a happy camper.
Not to say I haven't opted for some performance modifications in the name of handling and weight,
but those first elements are what's important.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Welcome home. Dennis
Thanks Dennis. I've been home for almost 5 years now. Hard to believe its been that long; my memories are still so fresh. I hadn't been paying much attention to the aftermarket accessory developments for the AR platform; it's bewildering how big that market has become. I had an M4 on my first tour back in '04, and for optics, most of us had Eotechs, although some had Acogs. No average Joe I knew had anything like that back home then, and I thought the Eotech was pretty nifty for quick target acquisition at close range. But the push-button controls and battery life were worrisome. It was just cumbersome enough to turn on that one didn't dare wait until he needed it to turn it on, so I had to turn it on at the start of each patrol and hope the batteries didn't crap out on me in the middle of something (fortunately they never did, but I never did find myself in the middle of anything anyway. As far as i know, during both tours, no one ever took a shot at me, and I never shot at anyone else). And I found it harder to qualify with it than with iron sights--except during night fire. We got issued quad rails and vertical foregrips, and I experimented with them for a bit. But I don't think the picatinny rail ladder covers were around yet; we had those fat slide-on rail covers that bulked up the quadrail something awful. And the more stuff you put on them, the heavier and more cumbersome that once-handy carbine became. But I soon found that mounting a flashlight WAS advantageous. So we were zip-tying plastic Pelican flashlights to them until some Surefires showed up. In the end, I kept the Surefire and the Eotech since half of our patrolling was at night. But off went the vertical foregrip and rail covers, and I just wrapped 90 mph tape around the exposed rails to soften the sharp edges some. Although the Vertical foregrip had at first made it more comfortable to carry the carbine at the low ready for long periods, I soon decided that it mostly just got in my way. To each his own sometimes... I suppose that since I never got into a fight over there, my opinions on accessories may be no more valuable than someone who never served and perhaps even less so than someone who got into a lot of fights over there. But I do chuckle sometimes when I see posts with people's personal AR's pictured that have a fortune in extra crap hanging all over them. Some of the accessorizing does appear to be an attempt to purchase proficiency; it seems like more attention is being paid these days to adapting the rifle to the man rather than the man to the rifle.


By my second tour, I was in a different unit--a non-combat arms unit--that was issued older M16A2's (mine was a Colt with almost no finish left on the barrel). Red dot sights had by now become almost universal in the Army regardless of MOS, but no Eotechs for us this time. We had Aimpoint M68's with an adapter that mounted to the trough in the top of the carry handle and then cantilevered down over the front handguards. I wasn't very impressed with this Mickey-Mouse arrangement. It wasn't the most secure of mounts, and I was one of many who ripped them off our weapons in the middle of qualifying; I couldn't seem to hit much with them beyond 150 meters. For close range, target acquisition was clearly superior to iron sights due to the paralax-cancelling feature. Beyond that, I found it to be a liability. Soon after arriving in Iraq, I locked mine up until it was time to turn it back in.


But much has already changed. Red dot sights are ubiquitous these days, and the good ones are REALLY good. I ran a Mini-14 through a Carbine Course last year (I was the only non-AR user there at the time), and while I could keep up with the iron-sighted AR guys just fine, I never could get off an accurate close-range shot as fast as the guys with red dot sights. I have to concede that a quality red dot sight and flashlight would be clearly advantageous--especially for house-clearing and the like. We seem to have a growing abundance of guys in this country these days who are uninvolved with the police and military but who are very well-equipped for close-quarters rifle combat. Outside of revolution or "TEOTWAWKI", however, I do wonder what scenarios they envision for their carbines. I wonder if they're really prepping (which I respect) or just playing.

I'm sorry you lost your friend Kovar. Too bad it took 16 years for his murderer to receive his just deserts.
 

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Not mine but just a funny pic that most AR guys are trying to make their carbine a mall ninja kind of weapon. :D

Congrats on your new Colt carbine, I've got two of the standard 6920 my home defense one mainly a military clone with only basic M4 furniture, with only an Aimpoint M68 CCO (model CompM2) red dot optic, Surefire M951C (push button switch - no wire & pressure pad), Knight's Armament carbine rail so I could attach my light and vertical grip, fixed LMT rear sight, and a basic two point sling made by Blue Force Gear (they are military suppliers), that's it nothing fancy.

My other 6920 carbine I'm slowly changing the furniture so I'm more comfortable with it, so far I only have a Magpul STR stock, Magpul grip, EOTech red dot, Surefire older G2 light with polymer body, and same two point sling by Blue Force Gear that's it for now, it got the minimum add-on civilian accessories that I need, nothing more.

On all my carbine gas system extractor I've had good luck in upgrading the extractor spring to chrome silicon spring material and also stronger than the Colt current extractor springs, no problems so far after using them for over five years now, the ejection of the brass is a little further and also lands in a smaller area than before.

I had never served in the military but I do have a very long experience with the AR platform, 42 years with Colt rifle gas system, 28 years with Colt carbine gas system, with Colt even the early models worked fine without troubles but now with some improvements like the M16 full auto bolt carriers, H heavy carbine buffers, extra strength copper-gold color extractor spring, the current models are more reliable now.

The only actual conflict that I encountered was back in 1992 Los Angeles riots when I was living there that time, all I had was my Colt Sporter Lightweight carbine with ten 30 rounds fully loaded magazines, Benelli M1 Super 90 semi auto shotgun, and two pistols Colt Lightweight Officers ACP (compact 1911) and Sig Sauer P226 9mm. I had other rifles, carbines, and more pistols (full size Colt 1911, Glocks, HK, & Walther) but I had left them at my parents house which was outside of town because I had used them on a shooting range close to my parents house the week before the riots.

My local Walmart now are selling three Colt carbines, before they only have the standard basic LE6920 M4 Carbine with the Rogers stock with the friction lock, now they have the Magpul black version like yours, plus they also have the LE6920 SOCOM model with the heavy profile barrel and Knight's Armament carbine rail system.

I had heard other guys seeing other Colt distributor exclusive limited edition 6920 models like with Troy rails and different colors, it seems they are getting more models from the factory, which is good for the consumers, the more the better choices.
 
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I've always been a proponent of the "less is more" standard, and somewhat a "purest": I like my apple pie WITHOUT ice cream, steak without any steak sauce, guns without the latest "gotta have it" accessories.

It's human nature to want to make a weapon distinctly "yours" by adding accessories or decorating it. The first stone ax no doubt was painted with personal totems.
People tell themselves they're getting a defense weapon, but what they really wind up with is a range toy, often one even less effective and slower then a stock weapon.
This is prevalent in shotguns and especially in the AR-15 series because it's so easy to modify and so many accessories are available.

One Sand War vet told me that you could easily identify the people who never went outside the wire from the actual fighters who routinely shot it out with the bad guys.
The people who stayed behind the wire carried rifles loaded with just about every sight and option possible, and fretted constantly with changing them around and adjusting them to be "perfect". There were fads about what accessory was popular with the "in" crowd, and where and how the accessories were mounted.

In contrast, the actual fighters experimented until they found a minimum set up that was as simple as possible and stuck with it.
The only changes they made was when they were going to be working mostly at night or during the day they'd sometimes change sights.

I've always believed that "simpler is better" because there's less to have to try to remember, and less to go wrong.
I've personally never cared for optical sights and have only owned one telescopic sight in my life, a 12X Leupold Target sight.
I briefly owned an electronic red dot sight on a .22, and a few times played around with an old 1960's fiber optic sight on a .22.
I've always preferred iron sights, particularly aperture sights because they seldom suddenly stop working or the battery fails.

I traded with a nephew for a new Colt LE6920 Magpul rifle earlier this year, but it's no longer a Magpul rifle.
I de-accessorised it to a older form of AR-15 Carbine: Older CAR-15 hand guards, standard GI grip, standard Colt military M4 collapsing stock, standard aluminum trigger guard, carry handle with sight adjusted to use the Sandose Revised Improved Battlesight Zero, standard nylon sling, and a Rock River Arms two-stage trigger. NOTHING ELSE.
No optical, electronic, or laser sights, no complicated slings, no adjustable triggers, no custom stocks, grips, or handguards, no rails, no modifications at all.

It's as simple and uncomplicated as I can make it, and therefore light, fast to use, and as totally reliable as possible.
Being uncomplicated and simple, there's little to fail and I only have to learn basic operations skills and commit them to muscle memory.
In other words, even though it hopefully is never going to be used anywhere other than a range, it's no range toy.
It's boring and totally plain vanilla, and no one at the range gives it more then a fast look, but I suspect that while many shooters will be trying to decide or remember which sight to use and trying to swing the heavy, bulky accessory laden rifle on target, I'll be shooting.

In short, I think that too many Upgrades are actually DOWNgrades.
 

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To me the greatest attributes of this platform is it's accuracy, followed bu it's light weight. Once you attach all the crap to it you may as well be carrying an ar10, m14 or any other class of weapons that weighs more. I did go with the jp enhanced bolt, and that is it. Carry an extra bolt assembly and you are good to go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I wish Colt still shipped the LE6920 with carry handle sights. The first thing I had to do to mine was remove that plastic backup sight and replace it with a Matech I already had. I don't really know which one is better, but the Matech is steel, has elevation adjustments, its what I had over there, and I've qualified with one before. Its a stopgap though, until I find a good carry handle sight, because the aperture is pretty large. The Magpul pistol grip is comfortable, but how comfortable does a pistol grip really need to be? I never experienced any actual pain or discomfort with the GI grip, and I defy anyone to show me that their accuracy somehow improved with a Magpul grip. I don't know if I'll replace it though, since that would just cost more money and would be disproving my point--that the pistol grip style is of no consequence. At least it does have a storage compartment. Maybe I'll put a small bottle of oil in there. Since the trigger guard is already designed to be opened up for winter use, the extended Magpul trigger guard is superflous as well. In fact, I've found that it rubs my middle finger some and is actually bothersome to me, so that may be getting replaced. The buttstock rattles something awful. The accepted explanation for that is that the GI ones did too, but I don't remember mine being that loose. If the milspec buffer tube is a known diameter, how hard is it to make the inside diameter of a plastic buttstock sized to fit snugly? I was gifted an LMT buttstock some years ago that has proven to be much more snug, and that's what I have on there now. But I'd be just as happy with a GI buttstock.

I haven't completely decided on the handguards yet. What I ended up with over there was a mostly naked quad rail (although I did mount a surefire) wrapped with 90 m.p.h. tape. The end result was a much narrower handguard than the stock oval GI M4 handguards. I pulled the Magpul handguards off and stuck some GI M4 handguards on it briefly, but those just feel too fat. The Magpuls remind me so much more of how good the triangular handguards felt in basic training, so those may very well stay on. Truth be told though, I'd gladly swap all of my Magpul stuff with someone else's factory Colt stuff any day--if it got me a Colt carry handle.
 

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Colt is following along with what most customers want, and most customers never use the carry handle with sight.
Look at TV news showing military and police users and all you see are flat tops with electronic or optical sights.

Most civilians go with what the military and police are using, so you saw a lot of unused carry handles for sale.
Since the customers aren't using the handle, Colt simply stopped shipping one with the rifles to help hold the price down.
People like us who prefer the carry handle sight are definitely in the minority these days.
 

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There's nothing on my AR save a rail for a light. I concur that the light could draw fire, but I'd try to remember to use it intermittently in gravest extreme.
I'm fond of the MagPul furniture; the fore end is reminiscent of the old triangles, and the finger bump on the A2 GI pistol grip has never fit me even remotely; the MagPul or an A1 work for me. The buttstock has never rattled at all on mine.
It pleases the hell out of me that I'm not the only idiot with iron sights. I'd have some 'splanin to do about why I was shooting at someone at 300 meters in self defense (it's hard to get a shot at a deer at that distance in our part of the world), so let me suggest XS 'skunk stripe' front sight and 'same plane' rear; the only diff is aperture size. This setup is especially effective on a pistol caliber carbine; perhaps a combination of the standard rear sight and a the white-line front makes more sense on the 5.56.
Eugene Stoner went to a lot of trouble designing a lightweight rifle; it's a shame to make one weigh more than a Garand.
Moon
 

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It seems a lot of people like to play dress up Barbie with their guns. Most of my guns are out-of-the-box stock with the exception scopes on some long range rifles. I qualified with an M1 Garand in boot camp. I carried a M1 Carbine and an M14 in Viet Nam. Later, I trained at Camp Pendleton with a new M16 and carried one in Viet Nam as an advisor. They were all stock with iron sights and worked well.

Here is my stock LE6920 for shorter range shooting and my AR-10 for longer range shooting.




 

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Good discussion in a fine thread gentlemen. :D

The beauty of the AR platform is its versatility, thank god we've got plenty of choices (if we want them) to tailor our rifles to suit our needs.

Thanks to all of you for your service, it's appreciated more than you know.

HAPPY JULY FOURTH!
 

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Please forgive the NEW guy

Well, so here I am, unloved by all: No optics, no grenade launcher cut, no rails with hanging thingy-ies. Just maximum sight radius on the shortest (non-sbr civilian legal) barrel. Yes, the REAL gas block is under the handguard. I went with magpul moe, because a damaged left hand has two fingers that don't curl. They just hinge at the palm. The round handguard tapers from 2.5 to 2 and the moe is 2.2 x 2.2 all the way......I did keep the Bayo lug though, just to annoy Frankenstein and rest of cosmetic commies.
 

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I'm not an AR enthusiast, and I only bought my 6920 because Banana doesn't want me to have one. One thing I have learned though, is that unlike a 1911, pretty much every part on an AR is plug and play... no gunsmithing needed. Therefore it's easy to customize them on a whim. And many times it gets out of hand, as it does with most do-it-yourself customizing (spinner wheels, bent antennae, stereos that can be heard in the next town, etc)

My 6920 will never get a light, but I did change the handguard to one that feels better to me (11" Troy Alpha), and it's got a sling, a red dot, and folding BUIS. I might some day get a better trigger, but that's it.
 
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