Author Topic: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal  (Read 10836 times)

superbeau

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Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« on: February 25, 2017, 01:40:06 PM »
Hey team! I'm new here, and just purchased my first AR, so forgive any ignorance you spot in this thread. I just wanted a place where I could share some lessons learned and ask questions for others who have picked up this same gun. It's probably important to share that my main purpose for this rifle is coyote and hog hunting, more so than competitions or a range toy. I also wanted to keep costs to a minimum, so I'll be looking for stuff that works but I'm willing to sacrifice that last 20% in function to save 50% in cost.

Since I'm new to the whole AR world, I wanted to start with something entry-level and affordable, but plan to build something nicer in the future. That said, after a bunch of research and gun-holding at my local stores, I decided on the Diamondback DB15CCB. I picked one up for about $500 at Rural King, which I would never have thought of as a gun shop, but they had great prices, $10 shipping on guns, and a smooth process to order online and then pickup at their store.




My initial impression of the rifle was that it was a nice balance between raw basics, and simple but useful upgrades. There was a little wobble in the stock when fully extended and a tiny bit of "play" between the upper and lower receivers, but nothing that caused concern. The edges on the rails were a bit sharp, but I'm usually hunting with gloves on, so that didn't bother me either. It came with a collapsible stock, dust cover, A2 flash hider, 16" barrel, and quad rail. It felt well balanced in the shoulder and I liked the way that it looked, so it was a good start right out of the box.

I'll add some other stuff in my next post, but in the meantime, please feel free to add suggestions, make corrections to my AR newbieness, or post your own experiences with the Diamondback DB15CCB rifle. Thanks, everybody  :main_good:

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2017, 01:44:24 PM »
The first thing I needed to do was put on a primary optic, and I decided to splurge a bit on the Nikon M-223 4-16x42 scope with the Nikoplex system. I picked one up at Optics Planet for $450 with free shipping.







I thought their Nikoplex was really cool and all of the reviews I could find showed that it was accurate as described. They say to use a 55-grain ballistic-tipped bullet shooting at 3,240 FPS and then the scope is supposed to be calibrated such that you sight it in at 100 yards, reset the adjustable turrets, and then it's marked for 100, 200, 300... out to 600 yards. It's nice that you can make a turret adjustment for distance and then quickly set it back to your 100-yard zero. Most major ammo manufacturers produce this exact type of bullet with this rated velocity, so there are lots of choices that still comply with Nikon's advice. This is a pretty cool promo video from Nikon, testing their M-223 scopes at the range.



*** UPDATE - 03/07/2017 ***
I sent a note to Nikon customer service recently, asking them about their rating for the M223 Nikoplex. They say to use a 55-grain bullet fired at 3240 FPS. There are lots of ammo manufacturers producing that exact load, but none of them actually fire at 3240 out of most ARs. I was curious, so I asked if the velocity was actual (i.e. chronograph) or as advertised on the ammo boxes. Their response states that the 3240 velocity is what's coming out of the rifle and not what's advertised - not all that surprised. So be aware that, unless you have a 20"+ barrel on your AR, you'll have to really push to get loads coming out at the speed. Or you can use their SpotOn software and input your actual ammo data, and then for $100 they'll send you custom turrets. That's not in the budget right now, especially after just dropping $400+ on their scope. Maybe it's possible to find a 50-grainer that's going faster to make up the difference? I'll do some work on that and report back.

*** UPDATE - 03/13/2017 ***
If you scroll down to reply #24 on this thread you'll see the answer to my question above. It turns out that, of the ammo I've tested so far, the 50-grain Remington AccuTip-V and 50-grain American Eagle AR15 Tipped Varmint bullets produces the best groups and are most closely matched (+/- 1.5") to the Nikoplex scope turrets out to and including 300 yards. That said, there's much more detail and data below.

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2017, 01:46:09 PM »
Next I needed to find a good scope mount, so I picked up a one-piece mount by TMS on Amazon for $25. I always used a two-piece mount in the past but some research convinced me that a good one-piece mount might be better. The one I purchased looked good and had good reviews, so I gave it a shot. While mounting the scope, the only thing that I didn't like is that the metal rings were the larger diameter, so they include plastic inserts to reduce the diameter for smaller scope tubes. They also include one top-half of a ring with a picatinny rail on top, so you can mount a light or laser on top of your scope if you want to. I just used the regular rings and started mounting it up. The other things that were in the mount box were a couple of small pieces of nylon or silk, or some thin, black material that was soft. There were no references to this in the instructions, so my only guess is that these pieces can be put between the rings and the scope to prevent the scope from being scratched. That's what I did, anyways, and it seemed to work fine. I was nervous about just having a single screw holding the mount to the gun, but after torquing it down, it all felt solid. I did have to crank down the rings a little tighter than I normally like to ensure that the scope wouldn't move or turn, but nothing that set off a red flag.


superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2017, 01:47:07 PM »
So now I have my gun, with a nice scope mounted, and I'm off to the range. First order of business is to find some cheap target ammo so I can start having some fun! I snagged some reasonably inexpensive ammo to get started - Norma USA TAC223 55 grain FMJ - for about $9 per box mainly to learn the operations of an AR rifle and to make sure my scope was close to zero before working on some better and more expensive hunting ammo.

https://media.midwayusa.com/productimages/880x660/Primary/436/436374.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal


I set up the bench at 25 yards and my first shot was perfect left/right but a few inches low. That seemed about right for me, so I backed up to 50 yards and was about an inch low, and then back to 100 yards where I was right on. I'll chalk this up to luck because I've sighted in enough guns to know that this is never the case :-) I reset the scope turrets so that the line was set at the 100-yard mark and then locked the turret back down. The gun fired well and I had no issues with jams or failures-to-fire, so I could not have been happier with this first data point.




*** UPDATE - 8/9/2017 ***
After burning through my original stockpile of NormaUSA ammo, I thought I'd research some other potentially cheaper options. I was pointed to one option via a YouTube video, suggesting that Wolf's "Gold" ammo is really good, clean, reliable and... cheap. They make a 55-grain FMJ bullet with brass cartridge that I found online for $5.50 per box of 20, or roughly $0.27 per round. By comparison, the American Eagle Tipped Varmint (i.e. budget) ammo I've selected for hunting is about $11 per box of 20, or $0.55 per round. So for half the cost, this stuff sounds like a good bet for plinking and warming up the ol' barrel. I just picked some up via AmmoSeek and will let y'all know how it shoots in my DB15CCB.

https://gun.deals/sites/default/files/Image1_ss693.128.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal


*** UPDATE - 11/10/2017 ***
I had a chance to shoot some Wolf Gold ammo today and, unfortunately, I was disappointed. I shot a 20-round box at 100 yards and they sprayed all across the target. I was using a solid bench and a lead-sled as I normally do, and it wasn't really that windy, so I'm going to blame the ammo on this one. I'll give it another shot but as of right now I have to say "no go" on the Wolf Gold. That said, while accuracy was an issue, my DB15CCB cycled this stuff with no problems whatsoever and it appears to be fairly clean burning stuff.

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2017, 01:47:43 PM »
My next move was to add a couple cool but inexpensive components to the AR. After all, that's one of the best things about an AR (as I understand it); the ability to add and customize in a million different ways. The first thing I did was add an anti-reflection device (ARD) to the front of my scope so the coyotes wouldn't see me on a sunny day. Luckily, my Nikon scope came with a pretty nice one, so I found that in the scope box and put it on. The one they give you appears to be a SunGuard KillFlash ARD Nightforce, or at least it looks just like the one shown on Misway USA's website. It's listed for $100 on their site, which seems crazy to me, but if so that was a very nice freebie from Nikon. It took a little elbow grease the get the plastic threads of the ARD onto the scope, but it did go all the way on. The finish doesn't match the scope, but I plan on camo'ing the gun eventually, so I wasn't worried about this. It does work well against glare, though, and it doesn't seem to impair the picture through the scope at all.

https://media.midwayusa.com/productimages/880x660/Primary/352/352777.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2017, 01:48:13 PM »
Next I wanted to add a flashlight to the gun, since I do a fair amount of my coyote hunting at night. I looked around on Amazon and found a handful of lights that all looked the same but were priced very differently. I decided to try one of the cheaper options as the specs all looked the same, and it was called the WindFire Green hunting light, listed for $38 and free shipping. This light supposedly has a CREE brand LED, which are good ones, and it came with a rechargeable battery, pressure switch, battery charger, and a couple of mounting brackets. I added it to the bottom rail using one of the included mounts and installed the pressure switch adapter. The mount worked fine but the screw threads on it scratched the finish on my rail a touch. Not a huge deal, but enough for me to knock their online review down to 4-stars. I ran the wire and pressure switching between the upper and left rails and used a long but thin piece of electrical tape wrapped around the forearm to hold it in place. It looks nice and the pressure switch works really well. The battery came fully charged and everything worked as advertised. The light was really bright, too, so I was very happy with the performance. It adds a little weight at the front of the barrel, which changes the balance a bit, but I typically shoot off of shooting-sticks, so I wasn't worried.



*** UPDATE - 03/12/2017 ***
For some reason, the pressure switch for my light stopped working today. It worked fine yesterday, but today, nothing. I charged the battery and tried the regular on/off switch and it worked; then tried the pressure switch again and nothing. As I was unscrewing the cap attached to the pressure switch, the wire detached and looked to have broken completely. I'll be sending it back to Amazon; will keep you posted as to their response. In the meantime, at least I still have a functioning light, but not exactly how I want it. More to come :main_undecided_ncc:

*** UPDATE - 03/14/2017 ***
The company that sells this flashlight finally began offering replacement LED bulbs in different colors, so I was able to purchase a red version for $13 with free shipping. Now I'll be able to switch out the green and red bulbs, in case I want to use red for coyotes and green for hogs. I'm not totally sure if it's necessary or not, but to be honest, it's cool! And instead of buying two flashlights, now I can have just one with dual purpose. Still no word back from Amazon on a new pressure switch, though.

*** UPDATE - 04/01/2017 ***
Good news - my new red LED bulb arrived from China. It was very easy to switch the bulbs and the red bulb is every bit as bright as the green one. I'm glad I now have the flexibility of switching between red and green, depending on my targets that evening.

Bad news - still nothing back from Amazon or their seller on the broken pressure switch. I've tried several times via several avenues and have never gotten so much as an auto-response. I'll try once more, but beware... the customer service here is terrible.

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2017, 01:48:48 PM »
Now I wanted to use a secondary optic to address the issue that all coyote hunters have at some time in their careers... those instances where your scope is cranked down to 16x and you're watching something 300 yards out, and then all of the sudden, a yote is 25 yards away staring at your caller. All you see in the scope is fur and you miss that shot more often than not. I had seen on a TV show where a guy used a 45-degree offset mount and a red-dot sight so that, in those instances, you can just twist the gun to the left while it's in your shoulder, maintain cheek weld, look down the red-dot, and then have a chance to get on that close dog without touching your primary scope. I found a 45-degree offset mount on Amazon for $9 with free shipping and then started doing some research on sights.



Like scopes, you can pick a sight that's anywhere from $10 up to $500, so again I decided to stay on the lower end to start. I found one on Amazon called Ohuhu Reflex Sight for $20 and free shipping, and I liked that it had multiple settings for the sight shape and could switch between green and red colors for day vs. night hunting. The sight came with the mounting equipment, so I put the 45-degree mount on the top rail, at the far end of the rail, so the angled mount faced towards the right. Then I screwed on the reflex sight and it looked great! The sight picture was clear and the settings all worked great. The only thing I didn't like was that I had to raise my head up a tiny bit to catch the reflex sight correctly. Since this is for close-range shooting only, I don't think it'll be a big deal, but I wish I could find an offset mount that is more low-profile so I could keep my natural cheek-weld and not have to lift my head at all. Something to work on in the future, I guess!



*** UPDATE - 03/06/2017 ***
I started having issues with my red dot sight not holding its zero. I emailed the seller on Amazon and they quickly sent me a replacement sight (without asking for the old one back), so I guess this is a common issue for them. I found one thread online where a guy mentioned having to tighten the "set screw" to fix this issue, but the seller couldn't tell me what that meant. When I got the new one in, I decided to do some experimenting to see if I could fix the issue. It turns out there there's a screw that you access from the bottom of the sight, so you have to remove it from your rail, that must work loose over time (see photo below). If you tighten that screw, then the sight becomes solid again and works fine. Now I guess I have an extra red-dot sight; maybe I'll try that on my turkey gun this spring!



*** UPDATE - 03/12/2017 ***
After trying out my backup red-dot sight a bunch of times, I just can't seem to get comfortable with it. The sight "window" is a little too high and I have to raise my head off the stock to see. Plus, when it's fast and furious, I struggled to find the red dot. I could probably find a lower-profile sight, but they are a lot more expensive, so I'm working on another angle. I'm considering moving to 45-degree offset iron sights, as there are some good ones out there at a reasonable price. I was looking for something specific to solve this problem and couldn't find it anywhere, so I might also be working on a new product concept now too :main_smile: The good news is that I tried this red dot on my turkey gun and it works really well, so that setup will stay, but this one is going bye bye.

*** UPDATE - 04/03/2017 ***
My prototype of a backup sight is now complete! I'm already writing up the patent but the gist of it is this: an offset mount with a shotgun-style fiber optic bead. It won't be quite as accurate as offset rifle front/rear sights, but I think it'll be close enough for charging coyotes and it's so much faster acquiring the sight and target than anything else I've used before. People have been asking for years for a fiber optic bead to be mounted on a picatinny rail, so now they'll have it. I'm going to test it at the range soon, so I'll report back on the results.





*** UPDATE - 4/17/2017 ***
I was out at the range today and wanted to give my new backup sight a test. At first I tried using it like a shotgun sight, putting the bead right where I wanted the bullet to hit, but I found the impacts to be maybe 6-10" high on the paper. Then I adjusted, thinking of the paper as a coyote trotting by at 20 yards and aimed the bead so I could see the whole "coyote" and the impacts were all in the theoretical boiler room. This isn't precision shooting here, folks... just something to help level the playing field when a 'yote sneaks in at close range. A favorite movie quote that applies in those situations: "I'm too close for missiles, Goose; switching to guns..."

*** UPDATE - 8/9/2017 ***
I wasn't totally happy with the accuracy on my little "invention", so I decided to try one last idea for my backup offset sights. After reading lots of reviews and watching lots of YouTube videos, I settled on some offset rifle sights on Amazon for $33. I'll give them a shot at the range and see if I have better luck. Will report back on the results!


superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2017, 01:49:16 PM »
This one is a bit picky, but the trigger guard that came on the rifle was just a straight piece of aluminum, so there wasn't a big opening around the trigger. At the range in the summertime, that's fine, but when I'm coyote hunting in zero-degree weather, I need some room for my big gloves to fit in there. I found a replacement trigger guard with a curved shape that did the trick for $8 and free shipping on Amazon. If you can't tell by now, there are parts available on Ebay and Amazon for cheap. I'm not saying these are the best products on the market, but they work, or at least all the ones I've tried thus far have worked.



This should be fairly easy to replace. You use a small punch to push out the rear pin and then use the end of a pen to push the spring-loaded front pin until the thing comes loose. The new guard went into the front pin easily, but for some dumb reason, I tried using the original rear pin instead of the one that came with the new guard, and the hole must have been a slightly different size, because it got stuck. Then I had the bright idea that I'd use the new pin and push it in from the other side, both pushing out the bad pin and seating the new one in a single victory. Wrong! The two pins bound up and I couldn't get either out. I gave one more tap with the hammer out of desperation, and this time it broke the "ear" off the opposite side of the trigger :Main_thumbdown2: This really sucks, because it's part of the lower receiver, so you can't just replace a little part to fix this one. The only good news was that I was now able to get the new trigger guard off the gun, so it was infinitely easier to work on now.

I cleaned up the two broken edges with some alcohol and then used a bit of Gorilla Glue to put them back together. With a couple of splints setup to hold the piece perfectly in place, I left the glue to set while I tackled the two pins stuck in my trigger guard. I ended up having to use a vice and pliers to pull one out and then had to really hammer with a punch to get the other out. The glue seemed to set really well on the broken ear, so I put the new trigger guard back in, starting with the front spring pin. I opted for a solid, 1/8" stainless pin from my local hardware store instead of the cheap roll pins normally used for the rear, and gently tapped it in with a punch. I placed a small piece of black tape over that side of the trigger, just in case my glue let go, so I wouldn't loose the broken ear in the field. That said, the glue has held up well so far (knock on wood!) and I do like the new trigger guard... but, man, it was so much more painful that it should have been. It turns out that this is a somewhat common issue, at least based on this thread, so if you try this replacement please be careful NOT to hammer that rear roll pin too hard. Also, be sure to separate the upper and lower receivers when doing this so your optics don't take any abuse when you're tapping (lightly!) on that real roll pin.

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2017, 01:49:49 PM »
The last two items I wanted to tackle in the first round were the two wobble points: between the receivers and in the stock. The stock was pretty easy - I found online where guys had removed the extension piece of the stock, exposing the tube itself. Then you take the soft side of some sticky velvro tape and put it across the top of the tube, length-wise. I used one of my girlfriend's leg razors to trim down the soft material until the extension piece would go back on the tube. It is a lot harder to extend and retract now, but I only use it fully extended, so it doesn't matter to me and now the wobble is gone.

The wobble between the upper and lower receivers was another story. I know it doesn't impact accuracy at all, but it bothers me, so I went at it. First I bought a little piece online that some people swear buy called an Accu Wedge. I think I paid $7 with free shipping on Ebay for mine, but when I installed it, I couldn't get the rear take-down pin to close. So per their instructions, I trimmed a tiny bit of rubber off, and put it back in. Now the rear pin closes, but the wobble was still there. Ok, throw that in the garbage :main_angry:



*** UPDATE - 02/27/2017 ***
I read that you can use a small rubber o-ring around where the front take-down pin is, so I tried that. I basically got the smallest one I could find for like $0.25 at the hardware store and it worked! It took a little more pressure to close the back pin, but it didn't seem like an issue or like I was creating any issues, so I went with it and it was the magic fix... for as long as that o-ring survives anyways.


superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2017, 01:50:57 PM »
I was trying to find a way to "soften" the quad-rail grip on the forearm where the rails are cut sharply. I found some rail ladders online that are made of rubber and fit in the gaps in the rail, but they were pretty expensive. Then I found some equivalents on Ebay and decided to try them for $3 and free shipping. I got the tan ones and they look awesome on my rails. They fit perfectly and I really like the way they feel and the way they look, so it was a nice addition to cap off this first wave up add-ons.

http://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/IsAAAOSwLVZVyU9N/s-l1600.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal


*** UPDATE - 03/01/2017 ***
I ended up buying another set of these so I could carefully cut them around my scope mount and offset mount; a pair of sharp scissors will get that job done pretty easily. The finished product looks really nice; I couldn't be happier with this purchase!

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2017, 01:51:35 PM »
With my gun more or less ready to tackle some action, I needed to figure out the best way to haul it around. Even though the gun is pretty light on its own, by the time I put on the scope, red dot, flashlight, etc. it was starting to get a bit heavy. I always thought the single-point slings looked cool and some folks online said they worked for hunting, so I picked up a sling on Amazon for about $20 all in. It's tan, has some bungee in it, and uses what seems like a solid latch to hold onto the gun. Unfortunately it's no longer available on Amazon, so I can't share a link for this item. Anyways, I thought I was all set, until I tried to attach it to the gun and realized that... oops... there's nowhere to clip on to!



After a bit of quick research I realized that I needed to change out my receiver end plate, so I snagged a Tapco one for about $12. There are a ton of videos on YouTube about how to install these and the only real trick is that you'll need to grab a stock wrench like this one, which cost me about $10, but I cannot find the exact one I purchased.



Once you have that tool and the new end plate, it takes about 10 minutes from start to finish to make the switch. And then the sling worked great, even when hiking around coyote hunting. Just make sure you have the sling sized as small as you can make it for your body, as that will keep it from bouncing on your knees when you're walking in the woods. The only downside I've noticed is that, when you bend down to setup your caller or drop your seat cushion, you really have to be careful that the end of your barrel doesn't go into the mud.

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2017, 01:52:10 PM »
As far as magazines go, the one that came with my DB15CCB is pretty cheap looking, but it works fine. I kept hearing about Magpul magazines so I picked one up at Walmart for $25. It feels a little more solid and looks cooler, for sure, but I think the only real advantage is that you can see through the side to tell how many rounds are left in that mag. Other than that, though, it’s just nice to have an extra in the case for a rainy day.

https://i5.walmartimages.com/asr/ad258f50-3af8-4ead-80c7-11933dd18b46_1.19d5c141b59b07ce7bd56fe4af994864.jpeg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal


Speaking of cases, I looked at a bunch online and most of my gun cases are green, so I was trying to find something that matched those. The one that I ended up trying was NcStar CVG2907, which comes in green, and I got the longest one they had available which I think was 45” to make sure I had enough room for the gun with all the add-ons. I found it on Amazon for $30 with free shipping and it has worked well for me so far, even with my stock always in the fully-extended position. There are five mag pockets on the exterior of the case, and I use a couple for mags but the rest for other gear, a couple basic tools, and my sling. No complaints here... it has worked well thus far, but it does show the dirt (if that matters to you) compared to maybe a black version.



*** UPDATE - 08/09/2017 ***
I ended up buying a 10-round magazine for my rifle as well. I use a particular bench rest when shooting at the range (and at prairie dogs) and it's built for bolt-action guns, so there's not much clearance between the typical rifle stock and the bottom support of the rest. I can barely make it work with a typical 30-round clip, so I'm hoping the 10-rounder will be easier to manage on this rest. I found a Magpul 10-round magazine on Ebay for $16 with free shipping and it looks good and appears to function correctly in my rifle. I'll try it at the range and report back if I have any issues.

http://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/o6cAAOSw5gFZd3vK/s-l1600.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2017, 01:52:41 PM »
I started to get nervous about the muzzle device - an A2 Flash Hider - that came on the gun. For me it became a risk of hearing loss for me and my hunting buddies, as we typically sit near each other when we're going after 'yotes. Since it doesn't impact accuracy and it's intended purpose is not aligned with mine, I decided to take it off. It took a pretty good pull with a wrench to break it loose, but then it unthreaded easily. To protect the threads on the barrel - I'm hoping to add a suppressor some day - I found a "thread protector" online that looks like the rest of the barrel. There are a bunch out there, but the one I liked had some light fluting, mainly for grip in my case, but the finish was the same as my DB15CCB. I found this one on Ebay for $8 and free shipping and it worked perfectly. The only issue for me is that there's a tiny gap between the barrel and the thread protector, but it's not enough to bother me. Some people will probably not like it, though :-)

http://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/~4AAAOSwIrNWFEts/s-l1600.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal

NOTE: This is a stock image and not my actual barrel; I guess it's easier to see the piece when the dark finish contrasts with a stainless barrel :main_blink:

Once I got the flash-hider off, I was surprised to see the end of the barrel looking really rough and ugly on the crown. I was shocked! Originally I thought it was shotty machining by Diamondback but then I read that it's likely carbon deposit trapped between the flash-hider and the barrel, so I calmed down. It took some serious rubbing to get that junk off, though, and I ended up having to use the pointy end of a cleaning rod tip (brass) to chisel the stuff off. After that I used some solvent and more elbow grease, and eventually it all came off and you could see that the machining was perfect. Based on my reading, this kind of deposit should build over many rounds fired, but I had only shot maybe 100 rounds, so I'm not sure if the factory shoots a ton of rounds through in their testing of each gun, or what. All worked out in the end, though, and the finished product looks very nice in my opinion. Now I'll be curious to see if there is any change in POI or accuracy in moving from the FH to the TP. There should not be, but only range-time will tell.



One side note from this exercise is that Diamondback appears to be using a 45-degree chamfer on these crowns, which I don't think I've ever seen before. I guess I'm used to seeing 11-degree crowns, or old rifles with round crowns, so this was a first for me. Not sure if this means anything one way or the other, but an observation nonetheless.



*** UPDATE - 03/01/2017 ***
I sent a note to Diamondback via their website's "Contact Us" page, asking how many rounds they fire through each rifle while testing them at the factory. I was curious, RE: the topic above about the carbon buildup on the crown of my new barrel. They replied right away, which is nice, and said that they typically only fire about 15 rounds during testing. So assuming that's the truth, 15 rounds is not a big deal after all. The carbon must just build up quickly, I guess!

*** UPDATE - 03/12/2017 ***
I noticed at the range today that my thread protector worked loose about one thread length over maybe 100 rounds fired. This had not happened before, so I just need to remember to check it during longer range sessions. I don't think it would impact accuracy at all if it comes loose this little bit, but it's not worth finding out, plus I don't want to lose it, so I'll be more diligent from now on.

*** UPDATE - 08/25/2017 ***
This happened a couple more times over the summer, so I decided to put a little teflon tape on the threads and then reinstall the thread protector. This appears to be working and, from everything that I've read, it won't hurt anything if the barrel heats up. I didn't have any Loc-tite, but this seems to be a cheaper alternative. I'll report back if the thread protector comes loose again; hopefully this will be the quick fix, though!

superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2017, 01:53:08 PM »
At this stage, I feel like I have a gun that is setup well for coyote hunting and that shoots pretty well at the range. In the future I'll tackle camo, suppressor (if IL changes their laws this year), and a few other mods, but for now, I like what I have and I'm probably into it for $600 plus $400 scope, so about $1,000 all in. Not too bad, really! So the next thing I wanted to work on - and am still working on - is ammo and finding the bullets that work best in the DB15CCB. Those original target rounds from Norma work fine but I wanted to figure out my go-to hunting loads. Since I was going on a trip to Florida after hogs this winter, I figured I would start with hog ammo. After some research, I narrowed down to two main loads that I wanted to try out: Remington's HogHammer 62-grain copper round and Federal's Fusion MSR 62-grain soft point.



http://image.sportsmansguide.com/adimgs/l/2/283110_ts.jpg
Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal


I was only shooting inside of 100 yards on that trip, so I left my zero at 100 yards from the 55-grain FMJ loads, and tried them both out. They both had minute-of-hog accuracy with 3-shot groups each, so I was happy enough with that for now. Then I put them to the test in the field and hit hogs with both. I always aim just below and behind the ear with hogs, and with both rounds, they would flatten 'em. I killed a 300+ pound pig with the HogHammer and it lunged forward and tipped over kicking. The Federals worked just as well and are a bit cheaper, so next time I'll probably just stick to those. Happy hunter all around, though :-)


superbeau

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Re: Diamondback DB15CCB Rifle Journal
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2017, 01:53:58 PM »
Back on the topic of ammo, my main load for coyotes is a 50 or 55-grain VMAX bullet. I use handloads for my Remington bolt-action 223 rifle with great success, so I figured I would start there for my Diamondback. Unfortunately I ran into problems immediately at the range with the handloads. They just wouldn't seem to seat properly in the chamber and the bolt would close about 95% but not all the way. I made the mistake of trying the forward-assist to close the bolt all the way, but that may have just made things worse. No matter how hard I pulled back on the charging handle, the bolt would not release. To make matters worse, it was a live round and the gun would not switch to the "Safe" position. I ultimately had to drive home with the "loaded" gun for lack of options or tools, and then took it apart when I got home. I read online that this can happen and there were two solutions. First, I tried aiming the gun up and rest it on your shoulder, then pull down on the charging handle while tapping the butt of the gun on a table; that didn't work. Then I took the upper receiver off and wrapped the end of a screwdriver with a cloth, and pushed the front of the bolt backwards. It didn't take a ton of force and the bolt went back and the shell ejected. I'm not sure yet why it happened, but apparently it's not uncommon for handloads to do this. Something happens to the shoulder of the brass and it jams in the chamber and the bolt is far enough in to partially lock but not fully lock, and then you're in trouble. Every other round handled fine that day, just the handloads struggled, maybe 2 or 3 times out of 50 shots. It would be a bad day in the woods, though, if it happened on a hunt! So I'm sticking with factory ammo for now, but hope to get back to handloads sooner than later.

*** UPDATE - 02/28/2017 ***
From further inspection and research, the reused brass was previously shot in a Remington 700 rifle in 223 chamber. My best guess is that those brass slightly conformed to that 223 chamber over time and then were unable to fit properly in the 5.56/223 chamber on my DB15CCB. Since all factory loads work fine with new brass, I'll try reloading some new brass for the AR and hopefully that will prevent this issue from happening again.

*** UPDATE - 03/17/2017 ***
Just a quick update that, after another 200 or so rounds fired (all factory ammo), I have not had a single issue with cycling, firing, or ejecting. I haven't tried any of the really cheap steel stuff yet, but I will at some point. For now, though, it seems that the ol' DB15 will eat whatever I feed it, apart from those old reloaded brass.

 

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Diamondback Firearms

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