Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    Levittown, Pennsylvania
    (Bucks County)
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    Default Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    In 2008 during the OMG Obama is president panic, I paid probably way too much for a really nice Spike*s Tactical AR-15. The quality is readily apparent and, to date, I have managed to avoid putting a scratch on it.

    Anticipating the arrival of a hybrid muzzle brake, I addressed the removal of the A2 flash hider that Spike*s Tactical had installed.

    The wrench flats span .742*, and either a * or 19mm open-ended wrench is close. Wrapping the barrel with layers of masking tape, I held that section in a small machinist*s vice, sans lower. Vigorously smacking the wrench with a 4 oz ballpein failed to unlock the threads.

    OK*.tried hitting the wrench in a tightening direction followed by the loosening direction. Nada. Applied Kano Kroil followed by heating with a torch, never exceeding 210 degrees measured. Still no joy. Tried smacking the front of the flash hider in an effort to reset the threads and/or reduce the crush washer. Nope, not yielding.

    Then it hit me. Crush washers are cheap and expendable, and A2 flash hiders are also cheap. Why not saw it apart? Using a fine plumber*s saw, the cut followed the joint between the device and the crush washer. The contact on the crush washer is at the outer edge of the taper and removal of that contact point requires very little cutting, thus there is no danger of cutting any part of the threads or barrel.

    The damage to the A2 flash hider is minimal, and was easily cleaned up with a diamond file.
    There are two kinds of guns. Those I have acquired, and those I hope to.

  2. #2
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    Jan 2007
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    State College, Pennsylvania
    (Centre County)
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    I would have heated the flash hider with a propane torch to loosen it and melt any loctite that may have been used. Had to do that yesterday when a customer brought me an upper that had a 6 1/2" pinned and welded barrel extension/flash hider on it (he got his approved Form 1 to make it an SBR). Drilled out what I thought was the pin but couldn't see where it was welded. Once I heated the barrel extension it came off, but not easily. Found out why after I got it off. What they did was different, they drilled the hole for the pin then put a small pin in then stuck the welding wire in the hole then struck the weld. That filled the rest of the hole with weld and they smoothed it up and blued that small area. When I removed the extension the little bit of excess weld material didn't really hurt the barrel threads but I still ran a 1/2-28 die to clean them up and reinstalled the flash hider he brought me. He gave me the extension and I cleaned up those threads and it's good to go.
    Ron USAF Ret E-8 FFL01/SOT3 NRA Benefactor Member

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Chalfont, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    Going around the mountain to take a piss next door.
    Put the upper on a reaction rod, twist off the a2 hider with a 3/4" wrench. If it's got a crush washer on it, you won't even need a cheater bar.
    Crusader's local #556 South Central Asia chapter

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Brookville, Pennsylvania
    (Jefferson County)
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    Quote Originally Posted by cdi View Post
    Going around the mountain to take a piss next door.
    Put the upper on a reaction rod, twist off the a2 hider with a 3/4" wrench. If it's got a crush washer on it, you won't even need a cheater bar.
    Unfortunately, some manufacturers in the past thought it best to gorilla shit on. I don't know if it was standard operating procedure or their wives pissed them off in the morning before work.
    RIP: SFN, 1861, twoeggsup, Lambo, jamesjo, JayBell, 32 Magnum, Pro2A, mrwildroot, dregan, Frenchy, Fragger, ungawa, Mtn Jack, Grapeshot, R.W.J., PennsyPlinker, Statkowski, Deanimator, roland, aubie515, SteveWag

    Don't end up in my signature!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    Levittown, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    The saga continues. The hybrid muzzle brake arrived today, in too-large a size (5/8 instead of 1/2 inch) / not what I ordered.
    There are two kinds of guns. Those I have acquired, and those I hope to.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Monroeville, Pennsylvania
    (Allegheny County)
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    Never seen a A2 with a crush washer that wouldn*t come off relatively easy. Seen some muzzle devices that used shims that were a little difficult to remove, but if you use a reaction rod it makes removing them easy.
    Today was a good day!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Berks County, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    A 4oz. ball pein hammer?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    Quote Originally Posted by knight0334 View Post
    Unfortunately, some manufacturers in the past thought it best to gorilla shit on. I don't know if it was standard operating procedure or their wives pissed them off in the morning before work.
    If the crush washer hasn't been rotated past it's ability, it will come off pretty easy. Rotated past that, they can be stubborn. The 5/8 crush washers almost always flare into the thread clearance cut on the barrel. It's easy enough to unscrew the device but the washer gets stuck to the barrel. Anybody have a removal trick? I have one on the bench right now that needs removed.
    Crusader's local #556 South Central Asia chapter

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    Levittown, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    File opposing flats to accommodate an open-end wrench?
    There are two kinds of guns. Those I have acquired, and those I hope to.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Quakertown, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: Easy and safe removal of a stubborn A2 flash hider

    Quote Originally Posted by cdi View Post
    If the crush washer hasn't been rotated past it's ability, it will come off pretty easy. Rotated past that, they can be stubborn. The 5/8 crush washers almost always flare into the thread clearance cut on the barrel. It's easy enough to unscrew the device but the washer gets stuck to the barrel. Anybody have a removal trick? I have one on the bench right now that needs removed.
    Unscrew it off with a pipe wrench?
    Accuse your enemy of what you are doing as you are doing it to create confusion -Karl Marx

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