Bolt Carrier

Rob Boudrie

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bownells has gone above and beyound for customer service. i had a tool set they could not get individual parts for. Sent me a complete new kit.
Take returns no problem. Im sure like any manufacture/vendor they will have some stuff that does not play well with others.
I've seen the supply end. For example, a manufacturer may sell direct with terms like "refund only if never modified or installed on a gun", but if Brownells forwards a fitted and non-resellable return for credit, the vendor will eat it or stop selling through Brownells. This is also the reason may vendors have more generous return policies if you buy on Amazon instead of direct.

I saw one case where the buyer wanted an unusual combination of parts requiring two products, that would leave 50% of parts left over. The manufacturer said "no". A few weeks later they got a Brownell's return of the leftover parts from someone doing exactly what the factory said "no" to, and had to issue Brownells full credit for the return.
 

uwaeve

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Sons of Liberty Gun Works is also a solid choice for BCGs, not as inexpensive as Toolcraft, on par with BCM, less expensive than LMT.
 

dcmdon

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Every LMT rifle is MP tested at 20 different points , the bolt carrier group consisting of 4 of those point over the normal 1 point of other manufacturers
LMT is one of those un-sexy companies that just does it right and has been doing it right for a long long time. Minus the sexy marketing driven name.

I have a LMT 10.5" upper. It was the first AR upper I ever bought when I progressed from shooting my Colt A2 HBar. Its got probably 10,000 rounds through it. Probably 3000 of which have been steel cased com bloc stuff. I am still on my (LMT enhanced) bolt. No problems. It still shoots 2 1/2 MOA with my reloads and a 12x scope, at 100 yards.

Bottom line is that LMT is not flashy. But they are better than Mil Spec. We like to think that Mil Spec is the best. Rather, its a minimum standard. To imagine that there hasn't been any progress in design or metallurgy in the 60 years since the AR15 was released is foolish.
 

rkwjunior

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LMT is one of those un-sexy companies that just does it right and has been doing it right for a long long time. Minus the sexy marketing driven name.

I have a LMT 10.5" upper. It was the first AR upper I ever bought when I progressed from shooting my Colt A2 HBar. Its got probably 10,000 rounds through it. Probably 3000 of which have been steel cased com bloc stuff. I am still on my (LMT enhanced) bolt. No problems. It still shoots 2 1/2 MOA with my reloads and a 12x scope, at 100 yards.

Bottom line is that LMT is not flashy. But they are better than Mil Spec. We like to think that Mil Spec is the best. Rather, its a minimum standard. To imagine that there hasn't been any progress in design or metallurgy in the 60 years since the AR15 was released is foolish.
Nobody has a PSA with 10k rounds down the pipe? Or a colt, or a bcm, or a spikes, etc etc, That's still run fine?

There has to be specs and testing that show LMT is better than milspec, are they more reliable than mil-spec? Let's see the testing specs on all the components that are "better than milspec"
So far, from the research I've done, there is nothing that blows the mind when it comes to LMT testing, unless I just havent seen it yet.

Yes, rounds down the pipe helps, but it's not like it's the end all be all. Plenty of FN's ,etc etc with 10s of thousands of rounds without issues.
So the LMT bolt has a burlier extractor spring, wow.
 

mac1911

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Nobody has a PSA with 10k rounds down the pipe? Or a colt, or a bcm, or a spikes, etc etc, That's still run fine?

There has to be specs and testing that show LMT is better than milspec, are they more reliable than mil-spec? Let's see the testing specs on all the components that are "better than milspec"
So far, from the research I've done, there is nothing that blows the mind when it comes to LMT testing, unless I just havent seen it yet.

Yes, rounds down the pipe helps, but it's not like it's the end all be all. Plenty of FN's ,etc etc with 10s of thousands of rounds without issues.
So the LMT bolt has a burlier extractor spring, wow.
Only thing LMT reports to do is actually check each part vs batch testing like so many other companies.

its all fun , you buy what you think is good for your money. As for PSA I know 4 who built them when they where dirt cheap and they all suffer some sort of problem. ? Yet others buy them to toss on thier giggle switched lowers to burn them up?

only irk I,have is the $2000+ AR owners who proceed to dump the cheapest shit M193/855 they can muster theough them and whine about accuracy BUT .65-$1 round ammo is to expensive....ugghh.
 

Dennis in MA

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Got my new upper with a Toolcraft BCG. Not real satisfied with the gas key staking. Like minimal-to-poor. I should have just bought the Bushmaster one from CDNN and called it a day. With shipping, it would have been the same price. I'll try and post a pic later.
 

dcmdon

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RKW most of what LMT makes is mil-spec.

I was specifically talking abouttheir enhanced bolt as being better. Itsgot 2 springs on the extractor and different bolt lug geometry. I also believe it is made of a more modern steel.

Re what mac mentioned. What you get with most top of the line companies is consistency.

Consistency is what we are talking about when we talk about a gun that you can bet your life on. I used to own an Olympic Arms AR. It was flawless. It was incredibly accurate and it ran like a top. I sold it in 2013 during the post Sandy Hook lunacy.

What is interesting here is that I personally know people with Oly Arms rifles who had nothing but trouble. The internets is full of stories of woe by Oly Arms rifle owners.

So why was mine good and others not? I guess I just got a good one. Despite my personal experience, I wouldn't recommend a used Oly Arms rifle to anyone.

You dont' hear stories like this about LMT. As much as anything that is made by humans, they all seem to run fine. Sure some are moreaccurate than others. But they all run. I wouldbet my life on an LMT rifle.
 

dcmdon

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Got my new upper with a Toolcraft BCG. Not real satisfied with the gas key staking. Like minimal-to-poor. I should have just bought the Bushmaster one from CDNN and called it a day. With shipping, it would have been the same price. I'll try and post a pic later.
I thought complaining about and obsessing over gas key bolt staking went out with quad rails. Ha. Just breaking your balls. But in all seriousness, it takes like 10 minutes to fix.
 

sschevy

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Only thing LMT reports to do is actually check each part vs batch testing like so many other companies.

its all fun , you buy what you think is good for your money. As for PSA I know 4 who built them when they where dirt cheap and they all suffer some sort of problem. ? Yet others buy them to toss on thier giggle switched lowers to burn them up?

only irk I,have is the $2000+ AR owners who proceed to dump the cheapest shit M193/855 they can muster theough them and whine about accuracy BUT .65-$1 round ammo is to expensive....ugghh.
that is a bunch of crap about the batch testing , I've been there and witnessed the operation with my own eyes in person , i dont draw my conclusions from what I read on the internet , I learned that lesson years ago
 

sschevy

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So all this must be on their website somewhere to confirm?
Or you work there?

Mpi tested
Shot peaned
Test fired
What's the fourth?
I've been a authorized dealer for 6+ years and have physically toured the facility , I've seen the operation first hand and what they do that makes them better than the average

its not 4 different processes, Its 4 different locations that are MP checked on the BCG as opposed to the normal single point, shit they even MP test their charging handles
 

rkwjunior

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I've been a authorized dealer for 6+ years and have physically toured the facility , I've seen the operation first hand and what they do that makes them better than the average

its not 4 different processes, Its 4 different locations that are MP checked on the BCG as opposed to the normal single point, shit they even MP test their charging handles
What blows my mind is you have to be on the inside to know what actual testing goes on.
If it's so far and above the rest why the big secret?
 

sschevy

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What blows my mind is you have to be on the inside to know what actual testing goes on.
If it's so far and above the rest why the big secret?
no secret , they don't need to advertise because their reputation sells their product on its own

I've toured dozens of firearms manufacturing facilities over the years and it would blow you mind as to what many of them DON'T do, not what they actually do
 

rkwjunior

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no secret , they don't need to advertise because their reputation sells their product on its own

I've toured dozens of firearms manufacturing facilities over the years and it would blow you mind as to what many of them DON'T do, not what they actually do
What reputation? I know nothing about lmt till now? All I know is they are expensive, and for what?
Like you said, I dont like to just listen to forum BS, I want to hear it from the horses mouth. So how else am I suppose to know they are far better than anyone else?
Why not advertise the quality control.?
And you cant knock the other companies like bcm, Daniel defnese. They are good rifles, they run.
 

Dennis in MA

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LMT is like Rolls Royce. How much do you know about RR cars??? You don't, do you. You know the name and such. That's it. LMT is the same way. Their customers are people who know who LMT is and are willing to pay for it.

Is it going to be that much better??? Maybe. Maybe (prob'lee) not. But some people pay for it b/c their lives are on the line. Others pay for it b/c they can afford it and want the status (aka: Rolly Polly Roys). For the damned rest of us, a poorly staked gas key on a barely mil-spec bolt is still gonna perform better than we'll ever notice. :)
 

rkwjunior

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LMT is like Rolls Royce. How much do you know about RR cars??? You don't, do you. You know the name and such. That's it. LMT is the same way. Their customers are people who know who LMT is and are willing to pay for it.

Is it going to be that much better??? Maybe. Maybe (prob'lee) not. But some people pay for it b/c their lives are on the line. Others pay for it b/c they can afford it and want the status (aka: Rolly Polly Roys). For the damned rest of us, a poorly staked gas key on a barely mil-spec bolt is still gonna perform better than we'll ever notice. :)
Again, everyhting is hear say.
So I'm supposed to assume LMT is the best, or should I listen to the forum commandos?
I dont have the opportunity to get a tour of LMT factory.
I do know that rolls Royce's isnt known for reliability.
 

PappyM3

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Again, everyhting is hear say.
So I'm supposed to assume LMT is the best, or should I listen to the forum commandos?
I dont have the opportunity to get a tour of LMT factory.
I do know that rolls Royce's isnt known for reliability.
To be honest, LMT doesn’t care much about convincing non-government citizens that their products are good. They win contracts based on products passing tests and by word of mouth within the professionally armed communities. That’s where they focus their efforts. They’re not refusing to sell things to non-government individuals like some companies (cough H&K ... cough Colt..), but they’re not going to put an effort into those sales.
 

PappyM3

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Got my new upper with a Toolcraft BCG. Not real satisfied with the gas key staking. Like minimal-to-poor. I should have just bought the Bushmaster one from CDNN and called it a day. With shipping, it would have been the same price. I'll try and post a pic later.
That’s rather unfortunate. I feel bad that my recommendation didn’t turn out to be good for you. I’m definitely curious to see the gas key staking.
 

sschevy

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Again, everyhting is hear say.
So I'm supposed to assume LMT is the best, or should I listen to the forum commandos?
I dont have the opportunity to get a tour of LMT factory.
I do know that rolls Royce's isnt known for reliability.

It doesn’t take much research to learn about LMT , their manufacturing process, the rigorous testing, the innovative designs or the special alloys they use

Shit , every free float design on the market started with the LMT design as they were the originator of it and held the patent for monolithic uppers for years

Karl Lewis has always been a innovative designer and exceptional machinist and continues to be to this day
 
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I build a new AR, dump and I mean DUMP (in semi or binary) a Beta mag through it for function and reliability.
Then sight-in @25yds and call it good.
I'm such a simpleton.
But I also don't use any of mine for competition or battle, or try shooting 1moa @ 100yds.
And I use affordable parts. Mostly whatever is on sale, so its a total mash of parts. I couldn't even tell you what any of my ARs are made up of my name.

RC
 

rkwjunior

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It doesn’t take much research to learn about LMT , their manufacturing process, the rigorous testing, the innovative designs or the special alloys they use

Shit , every free float design on the market started with the LMT design as they were the originator of it and held the patent for monolithic uppers for years

Karl Lewis has always been a innovative designer and exceptional machinist and continues to be to this day
I looked for this testing that occurs within the doors of the lmt manufacturing facility. The only thing I find Is forum commandos ranting and raving about how great it is after 1k rounds, without any real facts. Your posts are the only thing I've seen with a LITTLE more substance, still hearsay though, and I'm seeing it on a forum, so I'm not sure how much that holds up.
But...one thing that caught my eye was MPI testing charging handles. How do you mpi test aluminum? or does lmt use a different type of material for the charging handle?.
 

milktree

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We like to think that Mil Spec is the best. Rather, its a minimum standard. To imagine that there hasn't been any progress in design or metallurgy in the 60 years since the AR15 was released is foolish.
Sure, but it’s not like the military specifications are exactly the same as 60 years ago too.

And... “Mil Spec” might not be the best, but it’s certainly “good enough” for most applications. It’s totally reasonable for someone to simply buy the least expensive Mil Spec parts they can find.
 

Mountain

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It doesn’t take much research to learn about LMT , their manufacturing process, the rigorous testing, the innovative designs or the special alloys they use

Shit , every free float design on the market started with the LMT design as they were the originator of it and held the patent for monolithic uppers for years

Karl Lewis has always been a innovative designer and exceptional machinist and continues to be to this day

Yep, this. Ya gotta love how these threads devolve into a "Tastes great, less filling" pissing match. There's plenty of info on LMT which can be found with casual web surfing. For that matter, almost every aspect of AR's has been beaten to death on internet forums.

OP asked for bolt carrier opinions and received them. Not sure what was up with the complaint about lack of answers from MA- plenty of us replied. Lots of bitching from others as well. On a scale of 0 - 5, I award this thread two steaming piles. 💩💩

Next up: A lively discussion regarding the merits of stainless vs. melonite gas tubes.
 

rkwjunior

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I'd love to see the websites on the interwebs where all this lmt quality control information hides. Why not post it right on the website?. I'd be bragging about that high level of quality control, I think any company would
Cuz listening to forum blabber isnt believable, as SSchevy had stated earlier.
Claims of Mpi testing aluminum charging handles is the first sign of not believing the hearsay.
 

Dennis in MA

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That’s rather unfortunate. I feel bad that my recommendation didn’t turn out to be good for you. I’m definitely curious to see the gas key staking.
Meh. It happens. I'll try and post a pic later. It's staked, just not that deep.
 

dcmdon

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What reputation? I know nothing about lmt till now? All I know is they are expensive, and for what?
Like you said, I dont like to just listen to forum BS, I want to hear it from the horses mouth. So how else am I suppose to know they are far better than anyone else?
Why not advertise the quality control.?
And you cant knock the other companies like bcm, Daniel defnese. They are good rifles, they run.
Like I said 20 posts above. LMT isn't sexy. They don't make the latest greatest products to support the latest Chris Costa lobster claw gimick.

They just make boring dull stuff that is proven and works.

I owned one of their piston uppers in 2011ish and it ran great. I sold it for stupid money during the sandy hook panic so "no ragrets".

This is an SBR upper on a pre-ban SBR'd lower, I picked up in 2007ish. Its been to probably 15 days of training at Sig, Academi, Weaponcraft and TDI. Its also been used on top of a friends MG a bit. Still runs like a top. Like I said above, I did have to change out the proprietary springs in the enhanced bolt once.
 

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mikeboston

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I just bought a Colt BCG for $156 I’m fine with it. LMT is fine and many many more are fine. Personally I like LMT stuff
 

jpk

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Barrels and bolts are generally not good places to skimp/save money.....until you've seen a boom stick blow up in someones face due to bolt/carrier/barrel extension fail t doesnt reallytruly sink in why......

Question is....whats good enough......

Thats a question each individual needs to make for themselves based on intended use.

mil spec imho is a minimum floor to begin from.......

On the other hand PSA/AIM Surplus and others offer high quality/mpi inspected BCG's that can be found on sale for as little as 50 bucks that have nothing but 4/5 star ratings and they sell truck loads of them.

You cant beat BCM though for overall lifespan/abuse

Unless you're swimming thru mud with a gun, using a can and/or both and others.....I find it hard to justify spending 350 bucks on an LMT BCG
 
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drgrant

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Nobody has a PSA with 10k rounds down the pipe? Or a colt, or a bcm, or a spikes, etc etc, That's still run fine?

There has to be specs and testing that show LMT is better than milspec, are they more reliable than mil-spec? Let's see the testing specs on all the components that are "better than milspec"
So far, from the research I've done, there is nothing that blows the mind when it comes to LMT testing, unless I just havent seen it yet.

Yes, rounds down the pipe helps, but it's not like it's the end all be all. Plenty of FN's ,etc etc with 10s of thousands of rounds without issues.
So the LMT bolt has a burlier extractor spring, wow.
Please show us on the doll where LMT touched you.

-Mike
 
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Mountain

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Barrels and bolts are generally not good places to skimp/save money.....until you've seen a boom stick blow up in someones face due to bolt/carrier/barrel extension fail t doesnt reallytruly sink in why......
No arguments with that, but what constitutes skimping? Some have suggested very serviceable but affordable options that have no safety complaints, yet those suggestions were viewed as lacking. Some would argue that anything less than some boutique billet BCG would be skimping, or anything less than Cadillac brands like Noveske etc. I think OP picked up a Spikes? I like those a lot and have never had problems with mine, but honestly I've never had any carrier problems nor seen any. Bolts? Yes. No doubt, you don't want a crappy barrel and bolt combo, but the bolt carrier I don't see as quite so critical so long as it's of decent quality.

AR's might be the one thing that has more accessory options than Barbie. I'm just as guilty as the next guy for putting $tupid $h!t on an AR, but that's simply to suit personal taste not make it 'better' than an off the shelf Windham or Rock River etc. Almost comical how the merits of this part or that part get argued to death. Speaking of Barbies, I need to check what BCG is in my wife's pink Muddy Girl AR. That thing has been fed a steady diet of crap bulk plinking ammo for years and has never missed a beat. Probably whatever BCG came with the parts kit from Anderson.
 

citoriguy

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Also remember that if you periodically take the BCG apart and properly oil/maintain it, you’re likely increasing its longevity. That applies to any manufacturer.
 
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