Slappy, I think you are correct.
Like I said, I have an adjustable gas block and it was tuned for .223 loads, not hot 5.56 loads. So I am somewhat convinced that timing my be a factor in the marred brass.
Most of the brass has been in the 3:00 position.
I also noticed that my shell deflector is taking a beating from the ejected brass as it is painted gold with brass marks.
I am running an h2 buffer.