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big al hunter
April 21, 2011, 06:51 PM
I am thinking about adding a Daniel Defence M4 version 4 to my family of firearms. I would like to know what problems anyone has had and what accuracy you have been getting from yours. I have studied a little and have deterined that Daniel Defence is a fairly high quality for the money and I like the looks of the M4 v4, I like lots of rail space. This will be my first venture into the land of the AR/M4 and want to make the wise choice first. That said I am also up for suggestions in the $1500 price range. Thanks in advance

Jim243
April 21, 2011, 08:18 PM
From my understanding of every thing said, a mid length should be better than a M4 as far as reliability and less hard on the bolt and parts. No personal experience with a mid length only a M4 lenght carbine. My next purchase would be in mid length.

Jim

That'll Do
April 21, 2011, 08:44 PM
The mid length gas system tends to be softer shooting than the carbine length, not that there is a lot of recoil to begin with.

Daniel Defense is an excellent choice too; it's a well built gun.

chris in va
April 21, 2011, 09:52 PM
Buy used. Plenty out there and you'll save a lot of $$$ just because someone wanted the next 'latest greatest' or they got bored with 223.

Quentin2
April 21, 2011, 11:39 PM
I recently bought a Daniel Defense midlength upper and love it. My build basically is a DD M4V3 lightweight except no rail, MOE handguards instead. The quality of the upper is excellent in every way. It's on a S&W lower.

As far as accuracy I've only fired steel case through it so far so can't help you there. With the CHF barrel you'd expect pretty good accuracy with the right ammo.

DD is a fine choice and I'm sure you'll be pleased. No problems at all with mine. I also recommend the V3 or V5 midlengths over the V4 carbine gas length.

Daniel Defense/S&W left
http://i829.photobucket.com/albums/zz211/Quentin68/DSCN0952a.jpg

Dan Wesson right
http://i829.photobucket.com/albums/zz211/Quentin68/DSCN0953.jpg

HJ857
April 22, 2011, 08:27 AM
My most recent upper has a DD M4 barrel in a BCM receiver, with a DD BCG. It was fussy at first and ammo had to be absolutely in SAAMI spec or it would experience chambering or extraction problems. I sent it to my favorite gunsmith and he found that it the headspace was slightly short and that he could not truly tell if it was a .223 or a 5.56 chamber. He said his best guess was that it was a .223 Wylde. He makes what are called finish reamers and reported that the reamer took off a very small amount in the chamber.

So coupled with that chamber work and being really certain my cartridges are in spec - it shoots like a dream. With my loads that run well on the hot side, I can punch 2" groups at 100 yards with a non precision 4X scope and bulk 55 grain bullets. I think that's pretty darn good. Plenty good for my use.

I'm one of the few that think the whole mid-length vs. carbine length is a load of BS. I've put them side by side and couldn't tell a difference, YMMV.

One of my other uppers is a Bushmaster carbine. That upper has at least 10,000 rounds through it and it's had three ammo related failures ever, two of those were primers that backed out upon chambering, and one was a case head separation. Hardly the fault of the rifle.

There are folks on forums like this that would have you believe that a carbine length gas system could never reliably for that long and only a midlength or better could do so, and that a lowly Bushmaster would shake out its bolts or break or have some other epic fail within a few hundred rounds - if lucky.

So again, your mileage my vary, but I'd say buy with confidence and enjoy it.

Getting the headspace checked is never a bad idea though.

Quentin2
April 22, 2011, 09:00 AM
HJ857 is right, Big Al, nothing wrong with carbine length gas so don't let us talk you out of it. But consider midlength since you're talking about rails and a low gas block - why not compare the V4 and V5 very closely.

Father Time
April 22, 2011, 05:55 PM
One of my other uppers is a Bushmaster carbine. That upper has at least 10,000 rounds through it

Thats pretty impressive. The accuracy is going to slowly degrade though. How much have you noticed after the 10,000 rounds?
I'm asking because I know Bushmaster is pretty proud of their barrels.

big al hunter
April 22, 2011, 11:08 PM
Thank you for your opinions and suggestions. When you say carbine length gas are you refering to a gas impingement system as opposed to gas piston, or is there some other difference. I am familiar with the difference between impingment and piston but am unsure about the lingo. I am new to the style of rifle but not firearms in general so I should understand better when I hear more familiar terminology. :D

Quentin2
April 22, 2011, 11:37 PM
Thank you for your opinions and suggestions. When you say carbine length gas are you refering to a gas impingement system as opposed to gas piston, or is there some other difference. I am familiar with the difference between impingment and piston but am unsure about the lingo. I am new to the style of rifle but not firearms in general so I should understand better when I hear more familiar terminology.

Just talking about direct gas impingment. There are different lengths of the DI gas system however, and on a 16" barrel you used to only find the carbine gas length but now the midlength (where the gas port is 2" farther from the chamber) is gaining popularity. It's worth doing some reading on this because the cost of either length is roughly the same. I prefer midlength because it likely causes less wear on the gun and there are few disadvantages to it on a 16" barrel.

wildturkey76209
April 23, 2011, 01:28 AM
I know there are some Ruger snobs that post here on occasion that will steer you away from this rifle but I bought one and can tell you that it is fantastic. They come already equipped with a quad rail, Troy industries fold down sites, three 30 round Magpul PMags, and a soft case. I mounted a Trijicon ACOG TA11J-G and added an ambidextrous receiver end so I can carry it on a sling. It took less than a box of shells to zero and I ended up with a three shot group inside 3/4" at 100 yards. This was using Fiocchi 55 gr hollow points. The Rangemaster wanted to shoot it and nailed the top tip of a triangle with one shot. I was incredibly impressed with the accuracy of this gun. I would give it a look.

big al hunter
April 23, 2011, 01:30 AM
Thank you Quentin2. That is very helpful info. I will study more on DI systems.

HJ857
April 25, 2011, 01:37 PM
Thats pretty impressive. The accuracy is going to slowly degrade though. How much have you noticed after the 10,000 rounds?
I'm asking because I know Bushmaster is pretty proud of their barrels.

Yes. The Bushmaster is a four inch rifle now, maybe a bit worse than that, but was never a tack driver anyway. it's the Patrolman's M4, not even chrome lined and no feed ramps. Incredibly reliable though.


To the OP, the midlengths I've shot were notably heavier than the typical M4 upper. I don't know what barrel weight options are available, but that could be a factor worth looking at if weight savings is a consideration.

big al hunter
April 25, 2011, 06:50 PM
HJ857, I actually considered a heavier barrel for better sustained accuracy when shooting varmints. The lighter a barrel is the faster the groups get to large for prairie dogs and such. It's no fun to wait for the barrel to cool when the guy next to you is poppin em left and right with a heavy bull barrel. Accuracy is my biggest concern. I don't plan on using it for anything other than fun plinking and the occasional varmint hunt.

Quentin2
April 25, 2011, 07:38 PM
Midlengths tend to come in three barrel profiles, lightweight like mine pictured above (.625" dia), HBAR (.750 dia) and govt which is .625 under the handguards then .75 passed the gas block. The HBAR middy weighs about 15 oz more than LW. And the LW is just as easy to manuever as an M4 profile (which of course is not a middy).

Since you say accuracy is your biggest concern it might be best to stick with DI gas. Noveske and Daniel Defense CHF barrels may be more accurate than other middys. SS barrels are supposed to be accurate. My LW above so far is a 2MOA rifle but I haven't played with much ammo since it's new.

HJ857
April 26, 2011, 06:34 PM
It's no fun to wait for the barrel to cool when the guy next to you is poppin em left and right with a heavy bull barrel. Accuracy is my biggest concern. I don't plan on using it for anything other than fun plinking and the occasional varmint hunt.

With those uses in mind, have you considered going with a 20" rifle upper? A true varmint upper may be a better option, maybe even a flattop national match upper. An M4, regardless of the gas length is a lot less likely to achieve varmint class accuracy. The M4 style is really a fighting/tactical competition carbine, accuracy isn't really it's primary criteria.

big al hunter
April 28, 2011, 06:42 AM
Thank you to all that replied :) I went to my lgs to check on prices and availability of heavier barrels and ............ my buddy behind the counter said
"look at this model 70 aint it a beauty" Well I got all goofy in the head and decided the ar could wait a little longer. I bought the winchester and scope and spent my hard saved money. I will still be looking for an ar just have to save the $ AGAIN:D I will try out the picture makin thing when I get it the way I want it and show it to ya