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Thread: The Goose gets an upgrade.

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    Red face The Goose gets an upgrade.

    Well, the AR lower receiver did anyhow. I installed a LaRue MBT-2S trigger. It's supposed to be a "two-stage" trigger, but I don't see any difference. But for sure, it is lighter and a cleaner break than the OEM mil-spec trigger. It's supposed to break at 4.5 pounds, but I can judge that with only my finger.

    I'm no gunsmith, but it took all of thirty minutes to swap it out, and much of that was my cleaning the receiver nooks and crannies, lubing the sear points and pins, etc. While I haven't made it back to the range yet, the functional tests showed it to be a big improvement.

    If anyone is interested in an inexpensive AR upgrade and can't drop $200-300 for a match trigger, LaRue has them on sale for about $95 shipped. It comes complete with new pins and a heavier hammer spring (6 lb?) for those who prefer a bit heavier trigger.
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    Concur, a great upgrade at a decent price. It is a 2 Stage trigger and easy to install with clean concise instructions. I too installed one today on a demo gun that I use that has proven itself to be very accurate. This trigger should make it more so.

    The first stage take-up is 2.5lbs of preloading the spring and the let-off is 2 lbs crisp. Hell of a price for that quality of trigger. It used to be a $250 trigger, but Matt LaRue has done some amazing things to keep the cost down and pass the savings on to the customer without lowering quality.

    Highly recommended.

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    I've always been a "shoot what you bring" guy and never put a lot of thought into triggers. I leaned toward hunter rather than bench-rest marksman. But the improvement in this, basically for the cost of a generic replacement mil-spec trigger, is amazing.
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    OK so what is the latest on the Goose? You stick it in the dumpster or is it so fun you haven't had time to tell us about it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chorizo View Post
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    OK so what is the latest on the Goose? You stick it in the dumpster or is it so fun you haven't had time to tell us about it?
    The barrel guy said to quit messing around and send it to him, so I did. He was going to try it on his lowers this weekend, but I don't know if the weather in IA will oblige. So until I hear back, I'm just twiddling my thumbs for a while.

    I ran out of powder (H335), so I picked up some BLC (2) to try. Supposedly, the load data for 6x45 round is pretty close to the Mongoose load, the Mongoose allowing for about a grain more. My first drop of less than max load filled into the neck, so I don't know how accurate that "Supposedly" is. It is definitely more voluminous than H335. I'm holding off the reloading until I get the upper back and can check COL max with some new bullets.

    I also picked up a BCG to dedicate to the Goose.
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    Well, hell. Hopefully this guy will fix the issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chorizo View Post
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    Well, hell. Hopefully this guy will fix the issue.
    He sent a video of him firing fireforming rounds through it with both a carbine and rifle lower, Of course, just like taking a car to the mechanic, it fed fine. He did say the cases I sent were likely oversized headspace wise, so I have to rework that aspect. He's going to try a few rounds using my load data and see what happens.
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    Oversized headspace wise? Did he mean that you aren't resizing them completely? That would be nice if it is simply having to re-set your resize die.

    I have a new side charge upper and it is "bolt bouncing" I got to get a heavier buffer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chorizo View Post
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    Oversized headspace wise? Did he mean that you aren't resizing them completely? That would be nice if it is simply having to re-set your resize die.

    I have a new side charge upper and it is "bolt bouncing" I got to get a heavier buffer.
    Case headspace too short. Excessive headspace? I've ordered new (?) once-fired LC cases to make a new batch but can't until my upper returns. I'm also going to use my new BCG in setting up the die.

    He said he'd send me some of his formed cases and a few rounds to try with my lower, and if they didn't work, I have a lower issue. Might be the motivation I need to change to an A1/A2 stock that I'd prefer.

    Working with wildcats ain't for sissies. But once it all clicks, they're a lot of fun. Being retired, I don't mind the times and effort to create the cases, etc.

    I like the idea of a side charging AR. Gotta keep the fingers clear though. I've never been impressed with the charging handle idea. It seemed like receivers and BCs I found were either always out of stock or overpriced.
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    Update:
    So the gun guy put my upper on both his rifle and carbine lowers, ran his ammo with my mags, and it ran like a Swiss clock. He says the cycling is my ammo problem and/or my lower. Here's what he found.

    His cases fired in my upper measured 1.4315-1.432 with a Hornady headspace comparator. My cases that I had previously resized measured 1.424--too short. He sent a few of his cases to me with all my goodies. I reset my die to set the case head space to his suggested 1.428 and loaded up a batch of ammo.

    Next trip, the rounds cycled fine except for the BCG too often skipping over the next round in the mag, despite changing mags. Then I installed my new BCG in the upper and everything went downhill. Failure to cycle, bolt locking up, and the persistent feed failure.

    Afterwards, I found the cases fired with my Armalite BCG measured 1.432, while the cases fired with the new BCG measured 1.431. You wouldn't think .001" would make a difference, but it does.

    Once again I reset the sizing die to 1.426-1.427" and loaded ammo. All the rounds chambered and ejected manually. Back at the range, I loaded one round per mag, an assortment of ASC, Magpul, and HK 5-, 10-, and 30-rounders, and fired each. They all fed, chambered, fired, and ejected at about 3:30 position. I had an "Ah-ha" moment, but just for a moment.

    Then after reloading the mags, the issue of the BCG skipping the next round resurfaced with about all the mags. The only thing left was some sort of tolerance mismatch between the Aero Precision upper and Armalite lower. I had brought along one of my son's high-dollar lowers--just in case--but it would not fit the upper. The forward pivot fitting and pin were too large. So much for high-dollar stuff. Stupid me for not checking the fit before leaving the house.

    And again, I experienced a couple of cases of bolt hard lock up where I had to beat the bolt open. Long story short, I found copper bullet shavings stuck in the chamber where the case neck seats. Apparently a couple of case mouths weren't chamfered enough and shaved the bullet when seating. One piece was a perfect copper donut. Another DOH! moment for me.

    All the empties have been resized, trimmed, chamfered, and primed for reloading. I have another lower (a Lauer?) that I will try to see if that resolves the issue of the BCG not picking up rounds. Ironically, I've never had a feed problem with my lower with its Armalite upper in .223. I suspect a case tolerance mismatch with the Aero Precision upper in how the mags fit.

    If the new lower takes care of things, I'm getting am Aero Precision stripped lower and building it from the ground up. I think the actual ammo issue is resolved. It shot really well, as well as these eyes will, when it worked.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
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    Afterwards, I found the cases fired with my Armalite BCG measured 1.432, while the cases fired with the new BCG measured 1.431. You wouldn't think .001" would make a difference, but it does.
    Have had much the same experience in a good-quality sidearm, the CZ P-01 9mm. Can't recall the specific OAL measurements, but two most-foolproof loads I ever had were the DoubleTap 124gr +P JHP and the Federal Hydrashok Tactical 9mm 124gr +P+ JHP. Lined up side by side, a dozen different rounds from shortest to tallest, invariably the DT and FHT cartridges were the longest. Visually so, even without measuring. And those worked like your proverbial "Swiss watch." Flawless, assuming the gun was clean, I didn't limp-wrist it, etc.

    Amazing how small-ish variations can gum up the works. Never have done much reloading, and haven't worked up "perfect" loads for a given rifle.

    Glad to see you're starting to see results from all of your efforts.
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    Put another 100 rounds through the Mongoose today, using my lower and one of my son's. Continued to have feeding problems with my lower while the son's lower ran virtually trouble free. There is something about my Armalite lower that the Aero Precision upper just does not like. I don't know if it is the buffer set up (sonny's has an H2 buffer) or how the magazine seats, but enough is enough. One thing I do know is the son's lower has the stiffest trigger of any AR I've ever shot. I almost had to force it to break. Very obvious difference between the triggers on the target. I'd change that out in a heartbeat if it were mine.

    So . . . I am ordering parts to build a dedicated Mongoose lower. This one will have an A2 stock, which I prefer to the carbine style.
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    The new Goose lower is done, but I need to pick up another charging handle. The one I was using went back to the Armalite AR.

    A2 stock with rifle buffer, Aero Precision receiver, PSA lower parts lit, and LaRue MBT-25 trigger. Assembly was pretty easy except for the detent springs and pins. Bear, they were.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Good looking rifle oldvet
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    Eureka!

    The new Aero Precision lower build resolved all of the Mongoose feeding problems. I had two separate first-feed rounds that did not quite go into battery, but I was shooting 80-grain SPBT "seconds," some of which had battered/slightly bent lead tips. I suspect that may have been the issue, and they both occurred with the 5-round mags. The 10-round mag ran without a hitch.

    I shot loads of H335 powder from 24.0 up to 26.0 grains. I knew I needed some scope adjustment, so I started at 50 yards and made a couple adjustments to bring the groups to center - 1 inch low. The load of 24.5 grains made one ragged group, the others not too bad, but I take credit for the more open groups.

    Moving out to 100 yards, I made one click adjustment right and let it ride. Shooting off a Harris bipod, the groups opened up a bit naturally, but they were right on in elevation and the one click right may need to be backed out. I'm letting that setting ride for the present.

    Recoil was mild, and the primers looked good--no cratering, no flattening--with only the 26.0 loads showing the barest bolt face imprint on the primers. I think it is safe to bump the powder up another grain or so.

    So it took a new lower to straighten out the Goose kinks, something I intended to do all along. The A2 stock I installed feels much better than the carbine stock I previously used. My eye aligns with the scope much better. I am finally a happy camper with the Mongoose.
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