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first outing with XCR

2571 Views 10 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  subsonic308
I got my rifle a few months ago but wasn't able to fire it until this past Saturday. It's the heavy barrel .223 version with the VLTOR collapsible stock. I added a MIAD grip, Magpul rail covers, and a set of Hayes Research HK diopter sights. The sights are fantastic, by the way.
For mags I used three HK AR mags, two unknowns, and one P-Mag. Ammo was Federal and PMC, all 55 grain. Weather was ideal.
The first mag through the rifle was the P-Mag and it ran flawlessly. The next two mags (one HK and one unknown) suffered multiple failures to return fully to battery. I tried the P-Mag again since it had experienced no initial problems but it too had the same failures this time. We broke the rifle down and examined it, finding nothing that should have been the culprit. The gas setting was on 4, gun was oiled and clean. As these were the first shots I had expected break in with some troubles but I still wanted to figure them out. On a whim I dialed down the gas to setting 2. The rifle ran like a champ as fast as we could fire it. Our best guess was that TOO much gas was causing override failures...the rifle came to me broken in, essentially, and needed far less prodding in order to function properly. Oddly enough, the felt recoil on setting 2 was greater than on setting 4. I realize this should not even be possible, but all three shooters felt the difference the same way. Once the gas setting was changed the rifle left little to desire in the area of reliability.

I'm no marksman, but we tried for some accuracy tests. I'm still learning the gun and the Hayes sights (while excellent) are also new to me, so we mounted an Aimpoint atop the rail for distance use. I'm comfortable with those red dots. I was able to hit clay pigeons at exactly 100 yards without any effort. If this rifle can do that, using a red dot, I can't wait to see what it's capable of with good glass. I was more than satisfied with the accuracy. It made me look good.

The rifle is front heavy, but during firing it literally does not move. We watched each other shooting it and the rise was so minimal it doesn't even count as lift. It's very easy to place multiple hits on targets because of how little the rifle moves during firing. During firing it actually feels like it balances itself out. It's an odd thing to try to describe but it felt "right."

The only negative is the trigger. The trigger is very nasty and I'm surprised the rifles are being shipped like this. It is the only thing about it that is unlikeable as far as I'm concerned. We also had a SIG 556 out there and I fell in love with that trigger after the first pull. I could fire that rifle amazingly fast (for me) and accurately (for me) as compared to my XCR. If RA makes a better drop in trigger I'll buy one. Otherwise it'll need trigger work. I'm hesitant to send of my rifle for work (don't want to be without it!) so I'm hoping RA offers something better. I think I have read here that this is coming soon..?

I must say that while all mags worked perfectly there is nothing currently out that can touch the HK mags for quality and function. They may not be NEEDED in order for the XCR to run, but they certainly removed any hint of doubt where the mag is concerned. From the first round to the last, each can be loaded with ease and the mags are built like tanks. I'll be outfitting myself with a full loadout of HK mags after this outing. The P-Mag ran great and feels great in the hand with loaded, but was not as smooth to load fully. I imagine I'll buy several more because for the cost they are very hard to beat, but my main mags will be the HKs.

So, the rifle is a gem and exactly what I'd hoped it would be. I seem to have been spared the break-in woes and other than the trigger, which can be fixed, it's the finest rifle I've ever owned. Good job, RA.

Thanks to those of you whose comments helped in pushing me that last step before I finally bought one, and to Terra especially for the personal help and Q&A sessions.
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Good to hear that your XCR is up and running without an problems.

As for:
The trigger is very nasty and I'm surprised the rifles are being shipped like this
This is an easy fix, and relatively inexpensive at $49.00, which includes return shipping, by sending the "Lower Only" to Bill Springfield who will work his magic on the trigger. It normally only takes a week to get it back and it's the best $49.00 I've spent of the XCR so far. Here's Bill e-mail address: [email protected]

You can bet your bottom dollar that the RobArm new trigger will cost Waaaay more than $49.00 to purchase and then have someone to install it. I can't see how it could be better that Bill's work. Yes, it's that good!

You won't be sorry!

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Amazing how perceptions can differ between people with the same rifle...

My impression of the XCR is that it is very light and managable considering how it is equipped (monolithic upper). I have not weighed it against an AR, but just off hand it feels lighter than an AR with a rail system to me, and the AR doesn't have a piston out front, of course.

I also find the recoil on gas setting 4 to be substantial. Noticeably more than any other .223 I've ever shot. I hope it is reduced some on #2.

I've not had a malfunction on #4, and that is all I've shot it on since I'm still in the break in period. My XCR has the standard very heavy/gritty trigger.

My impression of the Sig 556 was that it has a great trigger, very minimal recoil, but that it is very, very heavy. The one I fired had the swat rail.
Razai, glad you got it figured out...where are you located? The only reason I ask is a friend said he saw someone at the range with an XCR and SIG 556 the other day.
I just re-read and noticed you have the heavy barrel! Oops... that might explain it.

Well, welcome to the club.
Get a trigger job done by Bill, and you won't be complaining any more. :2cents:
Aussie, thanks very much for the info on Bill's trigger work. I hadn't thought of just sending in the lower. Much less effort. I'll definitely email him.
ny32182, I find the SIG to balance better perhaps, so that might account for how it feels to me. I mostly love the trigger, but then again I am a long time fan of the 550 series rifles. I chose the XCR over the SIG, though, and I'm not disappointed that I did so.
Aziator, I was not at a local range recently with it but I'm glad to hear another shooter locally has one. I tend to go to the desert. I'm out in Surprise on the far west side of the Phoenix valley.
I will be putting RA's 12" barrel on this before too long but it doesn't seem like I have much of anything else to worry about once I get the trigger worked on.

Thanks again to all of you. Great forum here. Reminds me of how nice ArizonaShooting.com used to be before it was overrun by a bunch of foul-mouthed pessimists with entitlement complexes...
I am actually in GA, but I was out in Sierra Vista for a year. There are a few guys out in AZ with XCRs
I'm in Yuma. I was also in Sierra Vista.
I would agree.. On gas setting 2 the XCR has almost no recoil. I have had one of about everything(sig556,ar15,hk53,hk93,ak74,and others)... The XCR is my choice.
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