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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Looking for any advice. I have about 600 rounds through my ar-556 and about 75% of the time, it Jams after the first round is fired. After that it has zero issues for the rest of the range day. I have 6 rounds that look exactly like this. Each from my first shot of the day. Thanks in advance.
BA6DEF18-89D6-4461-B6DE-F152871E8C24.jpeg
 

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what ammo, what mags and how full do you load them?

or try chambering the first round, then remove the magazine before firing. Does it do this with the second round when you re-insert the magazine?
 
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I've seen this happen before a few times with other ARs. Most of it can be traced back to bad magazines or timing issues. The latter usually happens if the rifle is severely undergassed or over-gassed.

Try a different mag. If it's still doing it, note where the brass is being ejected. A normally functioning rifle should eject cases between 3 and 4:30. If the cases are landing closer to 12-1 o'clock, it's over-gassed. Closer to 5-6 o'clock, it's undergassed. That's the simple explanation.

Solving timing issues becomes more complex as you can approach it several ways. The correct way would be to fix the amount of gas going into the gun itself. Band aid solutions involve adjustment of buffer spring strength and buffer weights.

From your post though, it sounds magazine related since the gun works fine afterwards.

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Discussion Starter #4
what ammo, what mags and how full do you load them?

or try chambering the first round, then remove the magazine before firing. Does it do this with the second round when you re-insert the magazine?
Thanks for the reply. I’ve been using x-tac 5.56. Come to think of it, the two times the rifle did not do this on the second round of the day, I was shooting x-tac .223 in the first mag. I’m using pmags. Two of them have been loaded once to 20 rounds and the main mag I’ve used has only been loaded to 29 rounds a few times as I usually load ten rounds at a time at the range.
I will be going to the range later today and will test that out.

to make sure I’m clear; this only happens on round 2-3 of the day. After that, I can reload as many times as I want for the day and it won’t happen again (my biggest day being 250 rounds, no stoppages after the first one.
 

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I've had this happen a couple of times myself. I agree it may be mag related. Make sure ammo is seated nice and straight in the mag and mag is secured in the receiver . A firm rap on the bottom of the mag may help. Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've seen this happen before a few times with other ARs. Most of it can be traced back to bad magazines or timing issues. The latter usually happens if the rifle is severely undergassed or over-gassed.

Try a different mag. If it's still doing it, note where the brass is being ejected. A normally functioning rifle should eject cases between 3 and 4:30. If the cases are landing closer to 12-1 o'clock, it's over-gassed. Closer to 5-6 o'clock, it's undergassed. That's the simple explanation.

Solving timing issues becomes more complex as you can approach it several ways. The correct way would be to fix the amount of gas going into the gun itself. Band aid solutions involve adjustment of buffer spring strength and buffer weights.

From your post though, it sounds magazine related since the gun works fine afterwards.

Sent from my LM-G820 using Tapatalk
Thanks for the reply! Doesn’t seem to be dependent on the mag I use but I’ve only taken the gun out 8 times, this happened on six of them so I can’t say for sure. once the first shots are fired for the day, I can’t recreate it. I will use a mag today that I know I’ve never used first.

I just looked back at a few slow-motion videos I took of me firing it yesterday. It appears the brass is coming out at about 3 oclock When looking down the sight, meaning that it ejects horizontal to the ground. Is this what you meant? or am I thinking of 3 o’clock on the wrong plane?
 

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Think of a clock with the muzzle pointed at 12 o'clock and the butt at 6 o'clock. The ejection pattern of a well tuned AR should ideally be between 3:30 and 4:30.

I see you're using P-mags. Do you know what gen they are? Gen 2 mags can sometimes act a bit weird. For polymer mags, I prefer Lancer or gen 3 Magpuls. For metal mags, I prefer steel C-Products.

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Discussion Starter #8
I've had this happen a couple of times myself. I agree it may be mag related. Make sure ammo is seated nice and straight in the mag and mag is secured in the receiver . A firm rap on the bottom of the mag may help. Good Luck!
Thanks! I haven’t noticed a difference between mags and I usually give em a firm whack to ensure they’re seated. I’m going to number my mags today and pay close attention though. I have plenty of experience loading/firing these things, just finally got one of my own.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Think of a clock with the muzzle pointed at 12 o'clock and the butt at 6 o'clock. The ejection pattern of a well tuned AR should ideally be between 3:30 and 4:30.

I see you're using P-mags. Do you know what gen they are? Gen 2 mags can sometimes act a bit weird. For polymer mags, I prefer Lancer or gen 3 Magpuls. For metal mags, I prefer steel C-Products.

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I’ve taken a few frames from a video of it yesterday. Looks like most of them are around 3 o’clock, but some closer to 1-2. I’ll attach them. The mag it came with was a gen 2 and I have two new gen 2s that have only been used once each. I’ll try some other styles.
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F7619FB9-80F1-4707-8F04-89CEE178F6C2.jpeg
6A9EACEE-64AF-47E1-B91A-374280804E00.jpeg
89D49DB2-80CF-4614-A5E5-20EEF9AF02C2.jpeg
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Been reading up on the symptoms of an over gassed ar and this really describes my experience. Very dirty upper with bits of brass after each range day, heavy brass marking on the deflector, and ejections between 1-3 o’clock as shown in the photos. I’ve seen that an adjustable gas block can remedy this, if it is the issues..but is it the right fix?

I added a free float hand guard and ground down my a2 site to fit it. I did it that way to save a few bucks and to avoid aftermarket gas block issues. The symptoms have not changed at all since day one with the rifle.
I’m worried that if I were to submit a warranty repair to rugar that they may say i’ve caused the issue somehow while removing the site portion of the block.
 

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You have two options if you want to adjust the gas entering the rifle. First is via an adjustable gas block as you've already mentioned. That would require removal of the old one and would likely void your warranty. Even so, ARs are the Lego sets of the gun world and with a small assortment of specialized tools, one can do many things negating the need for warranty service to begin with.

The second is through the use of an adjustable gas key or adjustable BCG like the Bootleg. The Bootleg adjustable carrier has a switch on the ejection port side which allows you to tailor your gas. It won't have the granular level of adjustments an adjustable gas block would have, but it requires zero modification to your firearm. Just drop it in and go.

The other and least desirable but cheapest option is to tweak your buffer spring and weight. Chances are you're running a standard carbine buffer. You can buy some tungsten weights and replace the weights in your buffer, or buy an H1, H2, or H3 buffer separately. Your ejection pattern is typical of many off the shelf rifles that try to err on the side of reliability by purposely over-gassing in order to compensate for weaker commercial loads. Running military spec 556 on the other hand exacerbates the issue, and you start to get malfunctions. Although your ejection pattern is slightly erratic, I would suggest you try a heavier buffer and/or buffer spring first since your case doesn't look too horrible.

In rare instances, you may need a combination of adjustable gas plus heavier weights and stronger springs to get a system running well. That unfortunately was my case with a POF P-308 which was severely over-gassed, and even moreso when I had a suppressor attached to it. That rifle has an adjustable gas block but still required a Springco orange spring and a buffer weighing 8.5oz to get it to cycle properly.

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Discussion Starter #12
You have two options if you want to adjust the gas entering the rifle. First is via an adjustable gas block as you've already mentioned. That would require removal of the old one and would likely void your warranty. Even so, ARs are the Lego sets of the gun world and with a small assortment of specialized tools, one can do many things negating the need for warranty service to begin with.

The second is through the use of an adjustable gas key or adjustable BCG like the Bootleg. The Bootleg adjustable carrier has a switch on the ejection port side which allows you to tailor your gas. It won't have the granular level of adjustments an adjustable gas block would have, but it requires zero modification to your firearm. Just drop it in and go.

The other and least desirable but cheapest option is to tweak your buffer spring and weight. Chances are you're running a standard carbine buffer. You can buy some tungsten weights and replace the weights in your buffer, or buy an H1, H2, or H3 buffer separately. Your ejection pattern is typical of many off the shelf rifles that try to err on the side of reliability by purposely over-gassing in order to compensate for weaker commercial loads. Running military spec 556 on the other hand exacerbates the issue, and you start to get malfunctions. Although your ejection pattern is slightly erratic, I would suggest you try a heavier buffer and/or buffer spring first since your case doesn't look too horrible.

In rare instances, you may need a combination of adjustable gas plus heavier weights and stronger springs to get a system running well. That unfortunately was my case with a POF P-308 which was severely over-gassed, and even moreso when I had a suppressor attached to it. That rifle has an adjustable gas block but still required a Springco orange spring and a buffer weighing 8.5oz to get it to cycle properly.

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Thank you for the detailed responses. I appreciate all the help and will take all of this into consideration as I start tinkering this weekend. Assuming I’ve already voided the warranty by modifying the a2 sight, I’ll probably go with an adjustable gas block. It still makes me wonder why it would only do this on the first or second round of the day, then zero issues. Maybe the heat to from the first couple rounds allows it to tolerate that much gas? I did check a couple different videos of the rifle firing and there were quite a few rounds that went in the 1 o'clock direction.
 

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Not an AR expert in any way ...but, OP, have you called Ruger customer service to get their spin on this issue? If there is an issue with the gassing, Ruger may want to have your AR sent back to the factory for some fine-tuning. Free of cost to you.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Not an AR expert in any way ...but, OP, have you called Ruger customer service to get their spin on this issue? If there is an issue with the gassing, Ruger may want to have your AR sent back to the factory for some fine-tuning. Free of cost to you.
I do plan on contacting them but I’ve already modified the a2 sight in order to fit a free float hand guard. I’m assuming this means any warranty support I had from rugar is gone. Still worth a shot but I doubt they’ll believe me that it has functioned exactly the same since day one. Thanks for the response!
 

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I do plan on contacting them but I’ve already modified the a2 sight in order to fit a free float hand guard. I’m assuming this means any warranty support I had from rugar is gone. Still worth a shot but I doubt they’ll believe me that it has functioned exactly the same since day one. Thanks for the response!
I wouldn't think they would void a warranty for grinding off the sight...folks have done worse to their Ruger guns and have received good customer service. What I would suggest would be to contact them and see if they tell you to send the rifle back.

If you do, I'd say to remove your after-market rail/handguard and then send it back that way. That way, they can replace your block, if they determine it necessary and the wose you get is that you need to grind it off again. Or, shoot for the moon and ask that if they have to replace the block, could they replace it with one for the AR556s that have a low-profile block for the OEM free-float barrels. Couldn't hurt.

Good luck.

Aqualung
 

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Just a suggestion for future, you can always drift the pins out of an A2 sight and replace it with a clamp on or set screwed low profile block. It's a bit more expensive than grinding it down but if you ever have to put things back to stock, you can easily. It's a lot harder drilling a new A2 base to match the pin holes in the barrel.

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