AR-15 Bolt hold open drops with a hit/timing?

Discussion in 'AR-15 Discussion' started by fa35jsf, May 12, 2013.

  1. fa35jsf

    fa35jsf New Member

    Well my Father-in-law (or soon to be) gave me a new Stag AR-15 for graduation. It is very freakin cool. However I was messing around with it and discovered that if I lock the bolt back and give a medium hit to the butt of the rifle, the bolt will release and go forward, without ever touching the bolt release.

    Is this normal or a weak bolt hold open spring?

    Second, I noticed that I can pull the trigger and the hammer will drop even when the bolt is not fully in battery. It can be almost 3/4 of an inch from being fully forward. Is this normal? Does the AR-15 have any mechanism to prevent the hammer from dropping until the bolt is completely forward? I am asking because I know that a 1911 will not fire if the slide is not completely forward.
  2. trip286

    trip286 New Member

    Bumping the buttstock and releasing the bolt is totally normal, WITH the magazine removed (I assume this is the case?)

    The hammer being able to drop while the bolt is not fully in battery is normal too.

    Now, note this, I speak from experience with the M16A2, M16A4, and M4 carbines, and have only shot a civilian market AR15 once. But, considering they're basically the same rifle, minus select fire....

  3. JonM

    JonM Moderator

    its normal for the catch to release with the butt striking the ground. most guns not just the ar15 will do this.

    the bolt has to be fully forward for the firing pin channel to be short enough for the firing pin to strike the primer. it cannot fire, but the hammer can release, until the bolt is fully cammed into place. it is nothing to be concerned about as its normally how the firearm functions in full auto mode. since you missing the full auto sear slector and hammer in a semi auto that prevents it from follow through, its normal for this to occur if you force it to do so.

    it will do it with a loaded magazine but not an empty one in place.
    Last edited: May 12, 2013
  4. fa35jsf

    fa35jsf New Member

    Ok great. Thanks JonM and Trip. Both of you have given great advice...... as normal. I just had to ask to make sure the rifle was safe before I take it to the range. As I alluded to, I am a noob when it comes to the AR-15 platform. I am trying to learn as quickly as possible though :)