Watch: PSA CHF Upper Meltdown
Kevin Felts 12.26.17
Awhile back Iraqveteran8888 made a meltdown video of a low end Palmetto State Armory (PSA) upper receiver. In that video, the upper went 440 rounds before the gas tube melted and the rifle stopped working.
There were several request for Iraqveteran8888 to test the higher end PSA uppers made with the cold hammer forged (CHF) FN barrels.
While the brand name is Palmetto State Armory, the barrel is made by Fabrique Nationale d’Herstal, aka FN. These hammer forged barrels are marketed as “machine gun steel” and are supposed to be more durable and stronger than non-hammer forged AR-15 barrels.
A machine gun lower was attached to the PSA CHF FN upper, and then the rifle was fired until it stopped working.
The upper is a mid-length gas system, while the cheap upper video was a carbine length gas system.
Now for the video.
At 5:26 Eric had to slam the buttstock on the table to extract a stuck round. That stuck round is probably what blew the gas tube. So is the chamber out of spec, or was there a problem with the ammo? Maybe the chamber was tight, and the heat made the chamber swell just enough to make a round stick?
The cold hammer forged upper went 430 rounds before the gas tube ruptured, while the low end upper went 440. The customer will have to decide if those 10 rounds are worth the extra cost of the FN CHF barrel.
Something else to consider: the cheap PSA upper had a classic style handguard, while the hammer forged barrel had a rail. It seems the hammer forged upper could vent heat better than the cheap upper.
When Iraqveteran8888 made the cheap upper meltdown video, I was rather disappointed at the results. Let’s just say I am very disappointed in the hammer forged upper performance. This is supposed to be the top of the line for PSA, and it did not last as long as the cheap PSA upper?
On a personal note, I use to be a be fan of PSA. However, as more of these meltdown and accuracy tests are done, I am slowly losing faith. Not to say I will stop buying PSA products, as they offer some of the best values on the market.