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Old June 12, 2014, 04:44 PM   #1
RX-79G
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AR15 forearm weight - regular vs. float tube

I've been looking all over, but can't seem to find this information spelled out anywhere.

I'm interested in a light weight mid length AR, and have the option to a two piece aluminum float tube for only a few dollars more.

What I haven't been able to find is the weight difference between standard hand guards with the delta ring and other hardware vs. a two piece aluminum free float tube.

I realize carbon tubes are the lightest, followed by one piece aluminum and very drilled out tubes. But I can't tell if a pretty normal 2 piece is lighter, heavier or the same as a regular hand guards with delta ring.

If you have carbine or 20" numbers, that's fine, too.


I understand the other benefits or downsides to the different systems - heat, interchangeability, accuracy, accessories, etc. I'm just curious what the different options do to the total rifle weight. Thanks.
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Old June 12, 2014, 06:15 PM   #2
Jim243
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Quote:
I'm just curious what the different options do to the total rifle weight. Thanks.
In most cases they make it heavier. The single thing you can do to make it lighter is change to a thin profile barrel. The lighter the hand guard the more expensive it will be. But most of the weight is in the barrel. The more accessories you add the more weight.

This is a carbon-fiber upper and lower with a thin profile barrel and started out at 5.6 lbs for the whole rifle. As you can see I have added some weight to it with the quad rail and accessories, but it is still very manageable.

Jim



As it originally came:

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Old June 12, 2014, 06:32 PM   #3
RX-79G
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Yes, I'm looking at a light weigh barrel. I'd like to know what tubes, handguards, delta rings, etc actually weigh.

I'm not opposed to a slightly heavier tube, since it has other benefits. I just want to know how much the trade off will be.
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Old June 12, 2014, 08:43 PM   #4
reynolds357
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I dont have any uninstalled at the moment that I could weigh. I have built all I have and am waiting on more parts. The weights are very close so long as you use the same length float tube as the hand guard you are replacing.
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Old June 12, 2014, 08:54 PM   #5
FrankenMauser
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My FF tubes are a few ounces heavier than a standard set of same-length handguards and associated hardware would be.

But... most of them aren't exactly super-thin or aggressively vented.


I can tell you that my DPMS vented rifle length FF tube (15 oz) is about 3 ounces heavier than comparable standard handguards.
But, my "Todd Jarret" () YHM extended rifle tube adds another 7 ounces. It is almost double the weight of a standard set of rifle length handguards and hardware. (But, 'standard' handguards and hardware vary by manufacturer, as well. So, there's no 'set' weight.)
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Old June 12, 2014, 10:13 PM   #6
DubC-Hicks
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You might be interested in the Midwest Industries Gen 2 drop in rails. They weigh less than the Magpul MOE handguards, or about the same.
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Old June 13, 2014, 03:05 PM   #7
Bartholomew Roberts
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http://www.vuurwapenblog.com/calc.html

Stock, single heatshield carbine handguards are 8.2oz, of which 2.8oz is the barrel nut, delta ring, etc. The double heatshield M4 handguards are 9.3oz.
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Old June 13, 2014, 07:00 PM   #8
FrankenMauser
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Based on the numbers in that link...
My DPMS vented rifle length FF tube is 5 ounces heavier.
And the Todd Jarret extended rifle FF tube is 2.5 times as heavy (13 ounces heavier).



One thing to keep in mind, though:
Some companies have been known to only list the weight of the FF tube itself, and don't include the weight of the barrel nut. In some cases, that can make a huge difference. Your typical aluminum FF tube barrel nut weighs about 1.5-1.8 oz; but the typical steel FF tube barrel nut weighs 5-7 oz.
When you're worried about weight, that hidden 1/3 lb is significant.
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