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Squirrel_Slayer 02-10-2011 10:44 PM

Re: Spikes Tactical buffers
Has any one out there had any experience with any of the Spikes buffers that are full of the tungsten powder as opposed to weights? I am wondering whether they are worth the cash and if they live up to the claims of less felt recoil and quieter operation.

Dillinger 02-10-2011 11:19 PM

Place holder - more on this later. Short answer, in theory they work. Accuracy on subsequent shots will suffer....

Squirrel_Slayer 02-10-2011 11:21 PM

Not willing to sacrifice acuracy. However, keep in mind this is a rfile that is single loaded ninety percent of the time. With the bolt constantly being locked back, while that diminish some of the effects of using this buffer?

Gatekeeper 02-10-2011 11:54 PM

I installed one on my 16" M&P
Definitely a huge improvement over the carbine buffer it came with. Most 16" carbines are way over gassed and could use a H or H2 buffer to slow the carrier down.
The spikes has been great, got improved ejection pattern, a lot less twang sound from the tube and vibration after each shot that would carry up through the sights. Made follow up shots faster and less movement in the sights made it more accurate. Will be curious to hear JD's opinion on less accuracy since I experience the opposite effect.:confused:
Perhaps he is from the school that likes light weight internals for faster cycling and the feel of the recoil that gives, I know a few friends that prefer that feel.
I prefer the less violent feel the slower/heavier buffer gives and plan to swap out my AR carrier for a heavier m16 carrier and see if it improves even more.

Very smooth impulse just a thump and the sights hardly move.
Maybe a regular H or H2 would give similar results, but I'm extremely pleased with the ST-T2

mjkeat 02-11-2011 12:05 AM

I have three of them and didnt notice a change in accuracy in any of the rifles they were in. In fact I experienced greater accuracy and faster follow-up shots due to smoother cycleing. Add a nice comp and you're in business. But then again I dont shoot from a bench.

Dillinger 02-11-2011 12:53 AM

Well considering I am at odds with two well known and members I personally respect on this issue, I figured I would post again to bump this up instead of updating my previous post.

This theory isn't new technology. It's based on an idea that was popular way back when called a Mercury Vial.

Used to be back in the day when someone had a Cape Rifle or a Big Bore Elephant gun and wanted to tame some of that recoil, they had a gunsmith drill a nice quarter size hole in the wooden stock and insert a metal tube about 8" or 10" long filled about 80% with liquid mercury.

As you all know mercury is a heavy liquid, so when you touch that big weapon off, all that liquid sloshes forward and then immediately backward to help offset that heavy recoil. Problem was it didn't settle down in time for a follow up shop, it was still in motion, even after a semi auto ejected the round.

Now the physics of the buffer tube is that it compresses your buffer spring to cycle the weapon & help ease recoil. The spring, in turn, forces the buffer forward again to force the BCG to strip the next round off the mag and back into battery.

In this sense the "tungsten powder" is in motion much like in a mercury vial. Like when some settling might occur during shipment? Well, some settling is going to occur a lot of the time that buffer gets slammed backwards and forwards.

In a rapid fire, follow up shot, your rifle has not settled down like it should have when the buffer spring locked the BCG back into battery.

Now if you shoot, take the time to re-acquire your target and shoot again - basically from a "rest" for the motion of the rifle, you won't experience an accuracy problem. A heavier rifle SHOULD actually be more accurate.

But I always approach any weapon platform with what MY idea of accuracy is and that is based on my experience with long guns of all types. In that regard, I want less motion versus more motion. I want the most stable platform to launch a round as possible.

So let me ask you this just as "food for thought".

The idea behind this Tactical Buffer is basically that it is a bit heavier, but is filled with loose material. Why?

Why not spec out the exact weight needed for, say, a mid length 5.56mm rifle? One buffer tube for that configuration and machine it out of one piece of stock?

What are your thoughts on why that isn't happening?

Quentin 02-11-2011 01:27 AM

I have to side with JD on this issue, and that is a very interesting explanation of how the powder filled ST-T2 could have adverse effects on accuracy. I had never considered that before but it makes sense.

There is another reason to avoid the ST-T2 that I have read about too. Standard AR buffers have individual weights that are designed to "hammer" the carrier forward at the precise instant that it wants to bounce back as a new round is chambered with authority. There are high speed videos illustrating carrier bounce and the ST-T2 and 9mm buffers don't do nearly as good a job dampening carrier bounce as a good H or H2 buffer. I'll look for that video and try to get it posted tonight.

Carrier bounce is much more important in full auto fire but even in SA that's running dry, dirty or has too much friction the bolt could end up a hair OOB requriing a push of the forward assist.


Gatekeeper 02-11-2011 01:29 AM

Regular AR buffers have weighted discs in them that move just like the mercury or powder filled versions(just shake one). The powder seems to stop dead, much softer than the rattle and vibration of the discs in a regular buffer.

Doing some quick research on why AR buffers were designed to have movable weights. I guess thats for the softening effect you(JD) described and maybe when the buffer stops and the weights continue it helps eliminate bolt bounce when returning to battery(at least thats one thing I read:rolleyes:).

I'm sure in my case I gained more advantage on an over-gassed carbine by simply increasing the weight of the buffer than from the actual fill material, May have to pick up a H2 or H3 to compare if the fill itself is actually helping as well unless someone else has already.

Gatekeeper 02-11-2011 01:42 AM

To me, the bounce of the spikes looks close to the H in this video, The carbine was noticeably worse and the 9mm looked really bad(they don't have moving weights IIRC)
5.2 Rifle looked the best, at least in this video. maybe its all about the weight (except for the solid 9mm)???

Quentin 02-11-2011 02:02 AM

I agree the 9mm and carbine weight buffers seemed to be the worst. I think you're right that the 9mm doesn't have individual weights or slugs. Very interesting video anyway, wish there was more...

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