L.A.R.B. – Linear Alignment Recoil Buffer

A company called Armament (yes, simply Armament) manufactures an AR-15 buffer called L.A.R.B. (Linear Alignment Recoil Buffer). When you look at this buffer, you can immediately notice its enlarged tail portion. That allows having the second point of contact with the buffer spring and provides better alignment of the buffer and spring inside the buffer tube.

Among other features of the L.A.R.B. is the bulged buffer face. That protrusion goes into the bolt carrier tail and prevents the BCG tilt in gas piston operated AR-15s. According to the owner of the company – Nick Barry, the buffer still allows normal field stripping by pivoting the upper receiver. It does not require to pull out both disassembly and takedown pins and move the upper receiver forward to make that bulged portion come out of the bolt carrier.

Another difference from the stock buffer is that the weights inside the L.A.R.B. are under constant spring pressure (see the image below). That feature eliminates the rattling noise of loose weights. However, it still allows the weights to move forward and compensate the BCG bounce.

The polymer tip is also redesigned. It is made of a different polymer and makes the buffer impact softer working like an additional recoil mitigation measure.

The company has conducted several tests with the conventional and L.A.R.B. buffers. The results are shown in the graphs below.

I’ll quote Nick Barry’s explanation of the graphs:

The graphs show how well the buffer as an assembly slows the recoil impulse. This was recorded using an accelerometer placed on a 10.5″ suppressed SBR. Rounds were fired with a stock H mil spec buffer, the same ammo fired with my LARB H buffer. The graphs show how my buffer literally takes the edge (sharp recoil spikes) off the recoil. The graphs show both semi auto fire and full auto fire. I have shown via shot timers, to slow the ROF on a select fire M4 up to 30% with simply installing the LARB. The LARB is so good at reducing the sharp recoil (basically “felt recoil”) that everyone who shoots it comments on how fast follow up shots are.

Here are also a couple of videos showing full auto firearms being shot with the L.A.R.B. buffer installed:

This buffer has other features too, which are listed in the image below.

The L.A.R.B. is machined out of a solid bar of 17-4 stainless steel. It is a drop-in part. The buffer is made in the USA and covered by a lifetime warranty. It weighs 4 oz (H weight). The MSRP for the H-weight is $75. They also plan to introduce an H2 weight buffer at an MSRP of $95 and an adjustable weight kit (3oz to 6oz) which will be sold at $45 price.

To me, this is yet another good example of an innovative product made by a small company. It is impressive how many new features the designers managed to include in a single simple part like the AR-15 buffer.



Hrachya H

Being a lifelong firearms enthusiast, Hrachya always enjoys studying design, technology and history of guns and ammunition. His knowledge of Russian allows him to translate and make Russian/Soviet/Combloc small arms related information available for the English speaking audience.
Should you need to contact him, feel free to shoot him a message at TFBHrachyaH@gmail.com


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  • VDMA

    I would not mind giving one a whirl.

    • Haulin’ Oats

      I’d be a customer if they offered a standard 8oz Full Length Rifle Buffer.

      • Nick Barry

        I’ve only had 3 people in the last year ask about a rifle buffer. Maybe, but there’s just not enough demand to justify it. Yet…

        • Haulin’ Oats

          Kynshot is basically my only option right now and those are frequently sold out at various retail outlets. Perhaps you could do a small batch run of rifle buffers to test the waters.

          • Nick Barry

            I may do a small production run here in near future. We’ll see…

          • Ted Eng

            I’d buy a rifle-length buffer.

          • Nick Barry

            Plus, boring a rifle length piece of 17-4 stainless steel stock? Not fun times! That’s a deep hole in 17-4…😂

  • PK

    Simple idea, tidy execution, good results, good price. Nice!

    …and it contains actual “tactical magic”! How can you go wrong?

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    Like the spinal column in a human frame you can trace so many ailments in the operation of an AR back to a bad buffer/spring assembly.

    • Alexander Nguyen

      Do you ever not comment

      • TheNotoriousIUD

        Do you not know the purpose of a question mark (?)

        Run along now:)

        • Alexander Nguyen

          Haha oh you must be an old person ;D

          Sorry to rip on you lol but I just found your comment to be a little pointless in how over-simplified it is…I mean, I’ve had a lot more issues tuning the gas systems of my rifles and adjustable blocks have perfected the reliability on mine–but I also collect AR15s in weird lengths and calibers. Do you mean a buffer spring that’s losing tension over its service life? Or an incorrect buffer choice? Idk about you but lately I’ve been much more concerned with thinking about gas port sizes, dwell time, and adjustable gas blocks than buffers. I usually just buy a JP SCS and call it good though haha

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Hey, I’m just saying if you want to cry like a little girl with a skinned knee then use proper punctuation so people don’t think you’re four years old.
            I own a legal MG and I traced all of my problems back to an incorrectly weighted buffer. Its a personal observation.
            If that annoys you then…..who cares?

          • Nick Barry

            Everything changes when you go full auto.

          • TheNotoriousIUD

            Especially ammo bills

          • Russ Kell

            Wait. Only old people use question marks?

          • cawpin

            Agreed. Buffer weights are rarely an issue, and then usually only in extreme setups. I run a 12″ .458 Socom with a standard carbine buffer/spring (pistol gas) and it has been 100% reliable.

          • Nick Barry

            Just my personal opinion… 4oz seems to be a very good “sweet spot” for a properly gassed AR rifle (DI or piston). Give or take an once for tuning but anything out of that range? There’s an issue.

          • cawpin

            Yes, there’s an issue…with the gas.

          • SeeThroughYou

            “Old Guys” dominate shooting sports, gunsmithing and top tier armed professions.

            You’re having problems with your gas systems because you don’t have enough experience with port sizes. I have 4 drill bits that will make any 5.56 AR run if you selected the right buffer for your barrel length, period.

    • Nick Barry

      Totally agree!

  • RocketScientist

    As someone who runs an environmental test lab, and spends a significant portion of my day looking at Acceleration Spectral Density plots like those from vibration and shock tests… his “explanation” is complete rubbish. A bit of the old “If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit” technique.

    Edit – To be clear, no idea if this product works or doesn’t, it very well could be the next best thing since sliced bread. Just commenting that those plots don’t really show much of anything useful and certainly not what he’s claiming they show.

    • civilianaf

      Its not Rocket Science, oh wait…

    • blueman21

      You should run the data! I always like people who are willing to put their money where their mouth is. Pay the $75 and run your data. You seem to know what you are talking about so let’s see what you can do!

      • RocketScientist

        Heh. You buy me the buffer, the accelerometers, a good data acquisition system (I like DEWETron personally), the ammo, the range time, and 4-6 hours at my billed labor rate, and I’ll be happy to. I don’t work for free 🙂

        • blueman21

          I’m sorry I didn’t realize this was a I’ll just “talk” about stuff, provide no proof and hope everyone believes me zone. You may be right but I don’t know and now neither will others.

          • RocketScientist

            Are… are you serious? I’m not making any claims about the product (i explicitly say that it might very well do exactly what they claim). I’m just saying those plots, and the manufacturer’s “explanation” of them, is meaningless. That’s not an opinion, or anything that needs experimentation to verify. All you need is a textbook and an education in engineering. Or even the math basics behind it (fast fourier transform, frequency domain, etc). Anyone with a bachelors in mechanical or electrical engineering will be able to verify. Just because it’s over your head doesn’t mean its unsubstantiated opinion.

          • nova3930

            Bachelors in Aerospace here and I’ll confirm, just showing accelerometer data isn’t going to show you too much. When assessing new installations on our aircraft, our dynamics guys use those in conjunction with rate gyros and strain gauges, along with developing transfer functions and then spend a heck of lot of time crunching the data to produce something useful. I don’t completely understand it but I know a lot goes into it…..

          • Gene

            Not sure I understand that cart. Freq is in bottom left corner, is that the X or Y axis? What are the different colors for (X, Y, Z? Which is which?)? Maybe a quick para on how to read the charts would help?

          • Nick Barry

            Look at my response in the other comments…

          • Joshua

            Lol.

            You want a “expert”….he may not be, but if he is never expect anyone with that type of knowledge to work for free.

            Why would he test a product for a company using scientific equipment for free?

          • Scott Tx

            uhhh, this is the comments section. the ideal place to talk about stuff, provide no proof and hope everyone believes me zone. sheesh. but after studying on those graphs a bit I agree with him. its a load of BS.

          • Nick Barry

            What part is BS? Did you see my responses to them?

          • st381183

            I think blueman21 owns the company, why else be upset over a product that has yet to be released to the public. You doth protest too much sir! I smell the smelly smell of something that smells funny!

          • blueman21

            I wish I owned it. I have been shooting the LARB for about a year now. And it’s been on sale for 8 months.

    • J Jac

      Knowing the man who developed and designed this buffer I can tell you that you’re completely full of it.

      Another couch commando with a degree in BS and a pair of waders.

      • J Jac

        “One other person is typing”

        Throw up some actual credentials and a linked in page and your opinion might make a hill of beans difference.

        Until then go back to playing Xbox.

        • RocketScientist

          did you just reply to yourself? man you’re worked up about this 🙂

          If you know the guy, ask him a few questions:

          1) Why did he choose to use acceleration spectral density (an analysis tool best suited to continuous vibration waveforms) to analyse a transient shock event, rather than a shock response spectra or pseduo-velocity shock spectra, which can actually tell you something about transient shock waveforms?

          2) Why did he plot his ASDs down to sub 1Hz when anything that low is just noise or DC offset and not actual “real” data?

          3) What accels was he using to measure such low frequencies. Ie, why did he choose specialist DC accels for this application? Hint: he didn;t and the accels he used DON’T measure accurately below 5 or 10 Hz

          4) Why is there no appreciable shift in the first mode frequency of 35 or so Hz, doesn;t that indicate that theres no real shift inn the resonant behavior of the system?

          5) why did he not plot anything above 50 Hz, when any decent dynamicist would expect most of the interesting dynamic response to be going on well above that frequency? Oh wait, its because his sampling rate was ONLY 100 Hz, so the Nyquist frequency is that low… why on earth was he only sampling at 100 Hz?? That’s useless for this kind of analysis.

          Again, because no-one seems to be reading this part despite me posting it in every comment of mine. I’m NOT saying this thing doesn’t work. I’ve never seen or used one. I’m not even saying the data presented here says it doesn’t work. What I’m saying is, from someone who is literally a subject matter expert in the field of dynamic (ie shock, vibration, acceleration) testing, is that the data presented here doesn;t show ANYTHING. It’s poor-quality data, and doesn’t tell us ANYTHING useful about the comparison between these two buffers.

          As for credentials, I’m not posting personally identifying information on the internet, because I’m not an idiot. I DO have a PhD in Mechanical Engineering, a Masters in Mat’l Science, and a Bachelors in Math. I hold a senior engineering position in a major aerospace and defense firm, and currently am running their environmental test facility which oversees a wide variety of vibration and shock testing, as well as climatic environments (pressure, temp, humidity TVAC, etc etc etc). As far as shock environments specifically go, I hold a Shock Certificate from IEST, I learned from and collaborate with Dr. Vesta Bateman (google her if you like), and I’m on the working committee that writes the Mechanical Shock and Pyroshock sections of MIL STD 810, which covers environmental testing of defense products. Oh I also hold an explosive users license and an explosive blasters permit with the state, and from the BATFE I am an authorized user of explosive. Oh I also have an FFL. Oh and last year I got my company’s Outstanding Engineer award which gave me a nice gold plate to hang on my wall and made my lil old mother very proud. I also got a bunch of gold stars in grade school. Now sure, I could have made that all up and there’s no way for you to verify it, because again, I’m not going to post anything personally identifying on the internet. But oh well.

          • J Jac

            “I’m not posting my identifying information because I’m a BS artist”

            Cool story kid. Unfortunately CoD kill streaks and technical information gleamed from Mass Effect doesn’t translate into reality.

            Back to Xbox with you. I’m sure mama is proud of that Tactical nuke you got last night.

            Again until you post some verified credentials your opinion amounts to a hill of very tech term laden beans.

          • RocketScientist

            Show me yours and I’ll show you mine. Post your name, home address, and place of employment, and I’ll be happy to show you whatever credentials you want.

          • J Jac

            I’m not the one posting up information in an attempt to defame a company and drag a man through the mud.

            I have no reason to reveal anything about my identity.

            You however have plenty of explaining to do and a duty to post credentials that aren’t from Wikipedia or Google.

            Until you post those your opinion is as good as mud.

          • RocketScientist

            Alright, let me explain this again, since despite putting it very clearly in all my posts, you are either unwilling or unable to comprehend it: I am not defaming the creator/seller of this product, or the product itself. I have zero experience with it, and no idea whether it works great or not at all. All I AM saying are things that the manufacturer, Nick Barry, has himself stated in several comments on this very page. Namely, that he used poor quality accelerometers, poor quality analysis techniques, and a poor quality test setup (and as a result, the data is so poor quality as to be meaningless) and that the statements quoted in the primary article regarding the plots presented don’t make sense to someone who understand that kind of data. Again, the manufacturer that you are so doggedly defending, has himself confirmed all that. To quote him:

            “I’ll be honest, I have no clue what these readings mean or what the information on the chart means … So, I downloaded an accelerometer app for my iPhone, made a picatinny amounted phone case and mounted my phone about 4″ rear of the muzzle. Then started pulling the trigger. Scientific? Nope.”

            That, right there, is all I’ve been saying this whole time. Once again, I have no idea if the product works as advertised. The manufacturer and several other users on this thread claim it does. I have no reason to doubt them. I have no opinions as to Nick Barry, as I’ve never met the man. Based on his comments ehre he seems a nice enough guy who REALLY cares out about putting out a good product, which he has spent a lot of time and effort developing, and is passionate about. The fact that he doesn’t understand the science behind this is perfectly fine. Most people don’t, and as he said himself, he doesn’t NEED to understand this stuff as the engineers he pays do that for him. Finally, to re-iterate. All I have been trying to say is the data presented in the plots above is too low-quality to draw any meaningful conclusions from, and that the interpretation given in the original quote doesn’t make sense. thats it. Since you seem incapable of comprehending that, this will be the last time I’m going to reply on this subject, as at this point we’re just going in circles.

            As for me having a duty to identify myself, that’s laughable. I have no such duty. And I’d be a fool to do it, especially to someone who has shown such an unreasonable and irrational level of hostility towards me for expressing easily-verifiable scientific facts. If you refuse to believe any of the things I’ve typed as a result of that, I don’t care in the slightest. If everyone else likewise gives my posts no credence, I also don;t really care. However, I would like to point out that if the amount of upvotes to my comments (especially vs. yours) and the comment replies from other technical folks confirming what I’ve been saying are any indication, then it appears most other people don’t feel the same as you in that regard. I hope you have a great day. And please don’t get so worked up about this. It can’t be good for your heart.

          • Suppressed

            He’s been posting here for a while with solid information and no BS, I feel RocketScientist is a credible person.

          • Dan

            I love how you try to belittle him with your “go play xbox” comments. Dude there are people far more successful than you that play Xbox/PS bill gates. Intelligent people play video games. Intelligent people develop video games. Im betting most of the people serving in the military play video games. I bet those drone pilots play a mean ol game of CoD. The future is now Grandpa. Rolling hoops down the road with sticks is over. Sit back and enjoy retirement. And just be calm. Have some green tea

    • 10x25mm

      The average location of each comparable line (trace) is about the same because that average location is a function of the gun, ammunition, and drive spring. Presumably these three elements were the same in both buffers’ tests.

      What does differ dramatically is the degree of ‘noise’ in the comparable traces. The height and intensity of the ‘wiggles’ in the conventional ‘H’ buffer PSD (power spectral density) traces are far greater than the corresponding ‘wiggles’ in the LARB ‘H’ buffer PSD traces. This suggests that the LARB ‘H’ buffer is far more effective as a damper. The LARB ‘H’ buffer should deliver more repeatable bolt carrier group return velocities, by a significant margin. If nothing else, more effective damping should reduce the ‘Chinese band’ noises that ARs are famous for.

      The LARB ‘H’ buffer also increases x-axis primary resonance frequency from the 0.39 Hz of a stock ‘H’ buffer to 8.9 Hz. Resonance vibration amplitude is inversely proportional to resonance vibration frequency, so this is a dramatic reduction in the excitement of other rifle components. This should reduce wear and tear on the rifle to some degree.

      Nothing in these graphs suggest that actual recoil is reduced, but the improved damping and lower resonance vibration amplitude may diminish perceived recoil.

      • RocketScientist

        Except none of those numbers make sense to anyone with a background in vibration/shock analysis. a Fn at sub 1 Hz??? Also, what accels is he using that can read accurately below 2 or 3 Hz (ie what is normally referred to as a DC accel, used for displacement measurement) AND up to 50 Hz? None, because they don’t exist. That 0.39 Hz number is a peak value the software picked out automatically, which appears at the bottom end (left side) of the graph. Ie its all DC offset noise, not actual acceleration measurement, below, i dunno 8 or 10 Hz or so. My guess is the actual primary mode (which looks to occur around 35 Hz or so) doesn’t shift either way at all. In space applications when we do pre- and post-vibration sine surveys to detect resonant shifts in chassis or isolated sensor assembly components, the general cutoff for what is considered a “change” is +/- 10%… we’re not seeing anywhere near that in these plots. Also, pretty much any of the interesting dynamic response you’d expect to see at higher frequencies, but we don’t know because they’re not plotted/calculated that high.

        that doesn’t even touch on the fact that this is using an acceleration spectral density plot (best suited to analysis of continuous waveforms) to analyse a transient event. It just doesn’t make sense. show us an SRS and a time-domain plot. Then we can actually see what the hells going on.

        • 10x25mm

          Think you are used to looking at far more rigid systems. It appears that they mounted their accelerometer somewhere in the vicinity of the buffer tube. The discrepancies you note may well have arisen from loose fixturing of the test rifle.

          Regardless, assuming equal fixturing, the LARB ‘H’ buffer does demonstrate superior damping ability.

          • RocketScientist

            I don’t see how theres any way you can draw that conclusion from the data. What indicates “superior dampening”? If yuo’re going off the Fn numbers, think about those for a second, they’re peaks picked off by the software automatically (ie all DC/noise), and are basically the lowest frequency plotted, think that’s just coincidence? Also, if the fixturing wasn’t sufficient so that the instrument is only measuring the dynamic response of the system in question, then literally all the data is worthless. Also, just noticed he only sampled at 100 Hz?? WTF, why such a low sample rate? As far as system rigidity, any gun made out of metal and wood and GRP (and not… i dunno, ziploc bags filled with water or overcooked spaghetti) would be sufficiently stuff that its Fn should be WAAAYYYYYY above the sub-1Hz range.

          • BaconLovingInfidel

            Industry standards demand al dente for spaghetti based guns.

            Everyone knows that, you fraudster.

          • Nick Barry

            And that’s what you feel when using it. And, that’s all that matters.

      • Nick Barry

        In that note, I’ve never claim to reduce recoil. Worded as “reduces felt recoil” is different. You can’t reduce the recoil of the bullet leaving the chamber/baller. That’s physics, what is possible is to reduce the impact of the BCG hitting the inside of the buffer tube after the firing. This, the LARB does do.

  • civilianaf

    Finally, a new product, that is actually a “new product”. I’m dumbfounded.

    Nicely executed, elegant, well done sir.

    • King_Hussein

      CTS Engineering has been selling their AKTIVE Recoil Buffer for several years now. I’m not enough of a patent lawyer to tell you if this is a copy but the intended use and claimed result is the same.

      I bought one last month for $65 plus shipping (they must hand craft each one out of a solid block of stainless steel when they get an order because it takes about 3 weeks to ship) haven’t been able to try it yet but the U-Tube reviews are favorable.

      • Nick Barry

        I’m aware of their design, I actually saw it after I designed mine. Great minds think alike! I think their design is okay, you still can’t open and close the receiver normally though. Still a huge plus to the LARB. All I’ll say, ours designs are similar but different enough. They probably do small runs just like I do…

        • King_Hussein

          Yeah, you have to pop both pins which is what I do 9 out of 10 times anyway so not a big problem. Good luck with the project.

          • Nick Barry

            Well thank you. Yeah, it’s not a big deal, but something I wanted to address. And I had an actual customer who got his upper stick on using one of slashes buffers on a Colt. The lower had a sear block would not let the upper slide forward enough.

    • CavScout

      All the things listed are pretty much all things a normal buffer does.

      • Nick Barry

        Basically, except the things the LARB does mil spec buffer can’t/doesn’t do. Other than that, it just does the same thing better.

  • TrustMeIAmEngineer

    EE class was a long time ago, but I don’t think PSD chart support Nick Barry’s explanation.

    1) If you scale the y axes to align, the peak power at ~13Hz (looks to be 1st mode) is about equal. How does this buffer change anything?
    2) X axis is not time domain, so what “sharp recoil spikes” are taken off?
    3) What are those “zig-zag” lines in the middle of the chart? I would call them vibrations if time domain, but PSD is freq domain. It stretches the imagination that there are structural modes spread precisely 1/2Hz apart. This is likely an artifact. Maybe the data is filtered or zero-padded? More likely, I suspect the imaginary part of the FFT (phase information) is thrown away and only the real part is plotted. The magnitude is plotted instead, because the phasor is rotating around the R and j axes. Imagine a one bladed propeller on an airplane. Looking head-on, you’ll realize it is turning in a circle and the blade length remains constant. Looking side-on (throwing away information of one axes), you’ll think the blade stretches and shrinks.

    • TrustMeIAmEngineer

      “The magnitude is plotted instead, because the phasor is rotating around the R and j axes”
      Typo. I meant to say magnitude *should* be plotted instead.

    • RocketScientist

      You picked out a few of the issues with this plot (though slight correction: freq is log as well, so that primary mode peak is closer to 35 Hz than 13). But the major one is that and Accleration Spectral Density plot is a VERY poor choice for analyzing a transient even like a recoil impulse (made even worse by their choice of analysis bandwidth… really? only showing us data up to 50 Hz?). Thats better suited for a continuous vibration environment. If he’d presented Shock Response Spectra plots with captioned time-domain data (and given all the parameters of the SRS calculations like assumed Q/damping ratio, analysis frequency spacing, etc) you might actually be able to draw some conclusions about the frequency content and relative intensities of the shock event. As it is though, you can’t really tell much at all.

    • blueman21

      You should run the data! I always like people who are willing to put their money where their mouth is. Pay the $75 and run your data. You seem to know what you are talking about so let’s see what you can do! Don’t team up with the RocketScientist and let see what two independent people come up with. This is beyond my realm of skills so I hope you will put a little time and energy into finding the truth.

      • Bart Jabroni

        Bluelady, stfu you ignorant git.

      • st381183

        I think blueman21 owns the company, why else be upset over a product that has yet to be released to the public. I smell the smelly smell of something that smells funny!

        • blueman21

          Been shooting the LARB for over a year, been selling them since December 2016. Wish I owned the company but I’m just a dumb vet who build guns for a living.

      • Pseudo

        Why is it incumbent on them to do anything? They’re clearly contributing already by pointing out that the company appears to be peddling garbage analysis as scientific proof of their products superiority. The guy making those claims clearly has access to the equipment already. Why not suggest that he takes their suggestions into account so he can produce something that actually demonstrates what his product does. Not to mention, they could “run the data” without paying anything. You should be suggesting that the company make the raw data used to make those plots public so these guys could “run the data” without paying any money. I’m an engineer, too, but a ChemE so that’s not something I usually deal with and I don’t have the time to figure out if these graphs are BS or not. I should be writing my thesis right now. I felt compelled to write because your stance is frustratingly ignorant.

        • Nick Barry

          I agree. To be honest, I have zero idea what any of the information from my accelerometer testing means. I don’t need to. All I wanted was a way to visually see what was felt when using the LARB. I used a simple iPhone app with a picatinny mounted phone case about 4″ rear of the muzzle. I don’t even know if the accelerometer is “accurate”, but I do know it’s accurate to itself, and that’s all I needed. The other tests showed the sharp spikes in recoil are literally rounded off after switching the the LARB. It’s not scienctific at all, but it does demonstrate visually what the buffer does. That’s it, simple.

    • Nick Barry

      As I replied to in another comment:

      This was a VERY Lowe key way to visualize what the buffer “feels” like when firing. I’ll be honest, I have no clue what these readings mean or what the information on the chart means. I don’t need to. When you shoot your first round with the LARB, you can feel it’s softer recoil. Immediately. So, I downloaded an accelerometer app for my iPhone, made a picatinny amounted phone case and mounted my phone about 4″ rear of the muzzle. Then started pulling the trigger. Scientific? Nope. Effective? Yes. ALL these graphs show, is visually that the LARB IS slowing and reducing the sharp spike in recoil. That’s it. You guys are WAY overthinking it. If someone wants do some actual scientific data testing, I would LOVE that. Remeber guys, I’m just a trigger puller like you, I don’t have a PHD in mechanical engineering. I’m a machinist full time and a FFL/SOT with a lot of trigger time. You guys can argue and tear apart my product and findings al you want. I’m okay with that. Fact of the matter is, I’ve done the hard work and hands on testing over that last year. I don’t have to have a PHD to develop a good product. I wanted a better buffer, no one made them, so I did. And it evolved from there. I would design it, build it and test it. When it didn’t work, I knew what NOT to do. When it did work, I refined it. Over and over until I was happy with the end result, which you see here. It’s not a perfect product, but it does work very well and it is a good investment.

  • jestertoo

    hahaha. Their website has some unfinished business…

    About us section. (Need an image of you for the about us pic to the left).
    Spicy jalapeno bacon ipsum dolor amet lorem landjaeger dolore rump in laboris. Ea leberkas exercitation sed, aliqua short ribs capicola beef tail adipisicing velit pariatur consectetur chuck. Ut kielbasa brisket ut tempor, culpa sirloin est eu drumstick rump pariatur. Ea landjaeger sed, leberkas brisket ut shankle esse doner voluptate swine ullamco veniam.
    Aliquip sausage hamburger magna prosciutto frankfurter alcatra, ham hock chuck. Shankle strip steak sunt, shoulder brisket quis sed short ribs rump ut porchetta consectetur dolore dolor chuck. Adipisicing burgdoggen picanha brisket ad consequat veniam. Short loin kevin in kielbasa deserunt, labore id ipsum ham sint pastrami quis capicola flank. Esse ground round ham hock, salami strip steak bresaola eiusmod ad.

    • Cosmoline ‘n’ Coke

      That’s funny! Nice work!

  • J Jac

    what actual engineers?

    I see a bunch of try hard keyboard commandos.

    throw up some degrees and actual proof of identity and their opinion might mean something.

    Until then their opinions mean nothing.

  • Flounder

    Excellent post sir.

    I have a point to make about number 4. Normal buffers of all types, carbine and rifle, are supposed to have some space for the weights to move. It is a development that aids in reliable function. The designers incorporated that when they first revised the buffer in the very early days. There have been lots of odd changes to buffers since the very first iteration, but I digress, back to the buffer! Think of it as a dead blow hammer. It smooths out the impulses (physics term relating to momentum/inertia) at the start of the carrier’s rearward travel and possibly at the end of the buffers travel.

    And since we are talking buffers… Who uses powdered tungsten in an AR-15 buffer? I am not familiar with anyone who does. Buffers are supposed to be repairable/replaceable from the whole assembly to the individual weights to the polymer nub. That might have been just because the military bureaucracy thought it was a good idea. Or the whole “mil spec” marketing garbage.

    You are absolutely right about affecting the cyclic rate. But I doubt that will be significant for such a small spring. My guess is 5-10%. That is loosely based on how much the hydraulic buffers reduce cyclic rate which is roughly 30%. But in those, you have the active hydraulic plunger. As well as all the hydraulic fluid sloshing around providing inertia at the start of the rearward travel and at the start of the forward travel.

    • raz-0

      Spikes was the first to have a powdered tungsten buffer. Their t-1 and t-2 buffers. Some others will them now too. They appear to be the same basic product labeled differently. Kaw valley precision is another one I ran into.

      • Flounder

        Ah. I was wondering why spikes wanted so much for the buffer. It is very subtly described on their website. Guess I learned something new today.

        • noob

          “Tell marketing not to tell anyone we just put tungsten powder in there, or the customers will just get some birdshot and make their own.”

          • Flounder

            Its weird. They have it listed on their sight as a weightless buffer. And proudly put it’s weight everywhere. Its like marketing missed a product!!! I am stunned! XD

          • Nick Barry

            Do you want me typing on a site, on running the SL25 lathe that pumps these out? I’m a one man show, priorities. It will be updated when I have time.

          • Flounder

            We were talking about the spikes? Are you with the LARB or spikes? And i expect spikes to have at least one marketing person. If their machinists are doing the website i am concerned for them…. a lot actually.

          • Nick Barry

            I own Armament. I have used the Soikes buffers in my personal builds. No issue with them, I just wanted more.

      • Nick Barry

        They were not and it’s not powder. It’s granuales. There is a diffence.

    • noob

      I always wondered if filling a buffer about a third to three quaters way full with lead birdshot would make a nice, silent buffer.

      • Flounder

        It would not… why do you think it would? The noise comes from the spring rubbing on the buffer tube… so if you get a slick spring or a slick tube the sproing goes away.

        But! Your idea is interesting. I know some people put lead shot in their shotgun stock to reduce felt recoil. I hear it kinds works. But under some conditions the shot expands and cracks stocks. In a buffer… it would be too light? My guess is you could make it work if you used really fine shot, and filled it up just enough so that it would act like a dead blow hammer. Meaning it wouldnt oscillate too much as the buffer traveled rearward. Which would be some magic. Doable. With high speed cameras and some way to see inside the buffer while it cycled in the buffer tube. Or lots if trial and error… idk what the effect would be. I bet it would work and reduce recoil a lot… but possibly reduce reliability in dirty conditions…

        Do it and tell us!? 🙂 if you want to.

        • noob

          Sadly, I’m in Australia. I’ve been employed by companies that make arms, but having a personal AR-15 would require me to take out a $2000 per year Dealer license and then begin the import process…

          • BaconLovingInfidel

            Well, then how in blazes do you keep dingoes from eating your baby?

          • noob

            Just use a knife mate 🙂

        • Nick Barry

          Simply put? I tried it. What you see in the article is the best I’ve come up with so far.

      • Nick Barry

        Been there, done that. It didn’t give me the results I wanted. I tried tungsten powder, granuales (which is what Sokies uses, not powder), shot and even liquids. The weight under spring tension was the only design that did what I wanted.

    • Nick Barry

      Dead blow yes. This is where countless rounds of testing and time comes in with the LARB. The distance the weights travel and spring rate plays a huge part in my buffer design. It took about a year to get where I wanted. People don’t realize, with a normal mil spec buffer and loose weights, you donget a dead blow effect when the bolt closes into battery. Then, depending on the orientation of the rifle, you also get a dead blow effect when extracting. I wanted to control this and control the weights. Not just let them move around. Cycle rate (on select fire) and bolt speed (on semi autos) both forward and rearward are controlled and effected by many things. The rate of unlocking, and the amount of bounce from the buffer hitting the rear of the buffer tube. Not mentioning gas pressure, assuming for arguments sake the rifle is perfectly gassed. The tail cap alone does an amazing job at linearly slowing down the BCG at the end of its stroke. From
      my testing, that’s where 95% of the cycle rate reduction comes from, and as a result, is also where the reduction in “felt” recoil comes from. I say “felt recoil” cause there’s basically two recoil impulses. The actual bullet firing/ leaving the barrel (that’s just physics, not much you can do there) and the there’s the hit felt from the reciprocating BCG slamming into the buffer tube. That, the LARB without a doubt does soften. That’s noticeable immediately after it’s installed…

      • Flounder

        No one has asked and you havent offered. But what can you tell us about the tailcap. Did you go with a softer one? Is the LARB longer than a standard buffer? And do you have plans to offer replacement parts? If not, is your plastic/rubber tailcap interchangable? Could a person stick yours into a mil spec buffer for a benefit?

        Thanks for actually being present in the comments and commenting.

        • Nick Barry

          I’ll say this, I’ll be honest and upfront about everything. However, I will keep certain things to myself. Too much time and money to simply give away my secrets and findings. It’s been a fun year and I’ve learned an amazing amount about the recoil end of the AR15. To answer your questions;

          The urethane durometer and shore scale I chose, was based on impact resistance, chemical resistance, durability and actual “feel”. I will say it is softer than mil spec. The shape also was designed to pair with the durometer used.

          Yes, my LARB can use mil spec weights (if anyone wants to fine tune it themselves) and as a result, the tail cap will fit a mil spec buffer. And yes, you will feel an immediate improvement with my tail cap alone. I don’t plan on selling them by themselves, but I may.

          • Flounder

            The secrets? I doubt you have discovered anything new… but there is an odd lack of information on buffers online so i understand why you dont want to speak up too much. Keep in mind, the original or early AR-10s and AR-15s made solid use of active buffers (springs and plungers similar to yours, but NOT identical). Like the “Edgewater spring guide” which was a super early variant. The rifle buffer with the rubber disks could work the same as yours… although it isnt as nice to be sure.

            That last paragraph is gold.
            Should definitely be in a description. But maybe i just missed it. The LARB looks significantly longer than mil spec, good to know it is not.

            The tail cap composition is interesting… i was just thinking it would be a very easy thing to make and sell. Idk if you have to order them or if you can machine them. But it sounds like you could machine a bunch of them (idk exactly what it is made of, but it sounds like it would be really easy on the tooling and cheaper than the buffer housing in raw materials. Since you say it offers a significant improvement i was just thinking you could offer it (i guess my overall understanding is that it is the cheapest part) as a sort of cheap entry level to an improved buffer. It could convince people to spend the money on your whole system when they would not have even tried it before. Personally, i just buy complete buffer tubes on sale, someone is always having a great sale on them, so i have a stack of spare buffers and springs. It makes me choke when an item i kinda consider as being free or 5$ is being sold for 75$+.

            Edit: i am just frustrated by how expensive “improved buffers” like yours the jp silent capture spring etc, are relative to the standard ones.

            And that isnt a dig at you or your marketing. I get you machine each one yourself and it appears that you do a nice job. I would have to get calipers and see one in person to confirm. It just stings. And why dont you sell a spring with the buffer? Many might have an extra spring, but those are wear items with a set replacement schedule.

          • Nick Barry

            Why don’t cars come with a spare set of tires too she you buy one? Why doesn’t your AR come with a spare recoil spring? Or a spare extractor? Or firing pin? Secrets? Yes, I may have not discovered anything new, but it’s my knowledge I worked for and earned. The amount of work, both in design AND manufacturing these is pretty high. I kept everything American made. All of it. Always will be. They are a more expensive buffer, but I have no problem dropping $2k on a KAC rifle as appears to a PSA. Bothe work, one just more refined and more features than the other. Sounds like you’ve already made up your mind about it. Seems you have a bit more emotion invested in my part than you should.

  • noob

    Are the flats on the carrier nipple just for style? It looks like a bolt head, but I can’t see how one would get a spanner into the receiver extension/buffer tube to turn the buffer, or what turning the unthreaded buffer would do.

    • Flounder

      Do you mean the flats used to get the buffer past the buffer detent?

      I have no idea what you mean by carrier nipple. But there is no place on the buffer for a wrench or any threads…

      After reading your comment on being australian… i guess look up a very detailed disassembly and reassembly of an AR 15 on youtube. The short answer is that the buffer and spring is retained by a detent. And to put the buffer into the buffer tube you depress the detent and rotate the buffer to one of the flats and it just barely fits in. The detent is spring loaded and the tip is _-_ like that… XD it has a step i guess. And the buffer will rest in that when in the forward position. And yes, there is a cut out in the carrier to get over that detent during cycling.

    • Nick Barry

      There are 6 flats rather than 3. This is for reduced friction (les contact area), and better debris and liquid evacuation.

  • Nick Barry

    You know guys, you can simply just ask me direct…. 😉

  • Mazryonh

    Someone should test how much a buffer like this reduces felt recoil on an AR-10. If this device is for real, then you could end up with a better solution for reducing felt recoil than muzzle brakes that vent gases and loud firing noises to the sides, by using one of these buffers along with one of those cylindrical blast diverters or linear compensators.

    • Nick Barry

      I would LOVE this. I’ve tried but with my limited resources and equipment (my force gauges will not record an event that quick), I’m unable to yet.

  • mazkact

    In spring piston air rifles we brass thrust washers called top hats on both sides of the spring in order to allow the spring to rotate freely while compressing and releasing. I’ve thought about a similar set in up a buffer system. For now I just lube springs and buffers with Moly grease and it works pretty well.

  • Nick Barry

    He makes a good product. With his design, you have to separate the upper and lower with bight the take down and pivot pin and move the upper receiver forward, then up. A lot of lowers will not allow the upper to slide forward. The LARB still provides anti tilt and carrier alignment while still be able to open/close the receivers normally. And the quality of the LARB is without a doubt much higher.

    • Flounder

      How effective is the reduction in carrier tilt? It seems like the domed front would not do much… but can you show us any empiricle improvement? I am not beating you up. Its just something i have seen a mountain of claims about. And i am still waiting on their evidence.

      • Nick Barry

        Well…. I’m sure there’s some very technical engineering term used to describe it. But I don’t know it. I do know that my first prototype I used a cone instead of a radius. I will admit I have no hard “proof” other than wear patterns on the buffer face itself, the rear of the carrier and the rails within the upper receiver. The radius itself doesn’t contact the rear of the carrier, it’s only the very outer diameter. It also
        Kind of matches the inner chamfer inside the rear of most carriers. So when the LARB Myles with the carrier, it’s got a pretty good center on it. You can feel this when you separate the upper, you have to overcome that fit to open it. Now, that being said, if you have EXTREMELY bad carrier tilt, there may be enough to overcome this fit. I’m very confident at this point, you have much bigger problems. I have not run into this but I can imagine it is possible. All of this being said, even in a DI gun, my testing have found there to be great advantages to keeping the BCG and buffer aligned during cycling. Biggest being very even and better wear patterns inside the upper receiver. And there may seem to be a “mountain of claims”, but I will be honest. This buffer doesn’t do one thing extremely well, it does several things well that add up to an overall great buffer. It’s something you feel the very first round, and can see in wear patterns…

        • Flounder

          I see you have put a great deal of thought and consideration into your design. I like it! Keep up the good work.

          Edit: It seems like this is a buffer that is improved in everyway. And not geared towards a single issue.

  • Nick Barry

    Thier design doesn’t have enough surface area to adequately prevent carrier tilt, I’m sure it does aid in carrier alignment though. The DSA product also still uses normal loose mil spec weights and buffer cap. It also adds a part to the reciprocating assembly. In the end, they are two different products, addressing several different issues/advantages.

  • Let’s invent a “Problem” that our Widget can solve.

    • Nick Barry

      So your saying that your AR15 is 100% mil spec? No one aftermarket accessory? It may not solve something for everyone, but it does make for a very soft shooting rifle. How is there a down side to that?

      • SeeThroughYou

        My issue rifle was an outright TURD compared to my personal ARs in civilian life, lol

      • No. Im saying that this invented problem isnt a problem. And the real problem is people buying into bullshit.

        • Nick Barry

          You just described 90% of the AR accessory market. And I’m sure you have a good reason to attack my product right? I would like to hear. How much money has MagPul made if the CTR stock? Millions? Arguably the most popular AR stock on the planet. It does nothing more than a standard M4 stock. So, again, I’d like to know what bullshit I’m selling? My customers like the way my buffer shoots. It’s that simple. I’d still like to know why the personal attack? I’m not taking it personal, just curious as to your claims….

  • Nick Barry

    Okay… my response;

    1) The radius on he face of the buffer body is what gives it anti tilt capability, not the enlarged tail section. It does this by nagating the lateral shearing forces created between the carrier and the buffers face when cycling. The only thing keeping this assembly aligned in a mil spec buffer, is simple spring pressure between two parallel surfaces (and only a few pounds of pressure at that). The radius on the face of my buffer, IS the key to the anti tilt and alignment features. It also the only anti tilt buffer I know of that allows the upper and lower to open and clos normally.

    2) As mentioned above, the enlarged tail section is NOT the anti tilt feature. It is there to keep the buffer aligned in the spring/buffer I’ve when opening/closing the receivers. It also does act as a spring guide. Spring binding is a non issue. I even cut a slot in a buffer tube to confirm this. Unless there’s something radically wrong, the recoil spring can’t bind. Even in a mil spec buffer, the recoil spring is held captive/aligns within the buffer tube itself.

    3) Why would I ever pick a material that wouldn’t work? Or assume not test it before I started selling? Of course not. The material is not proprietary or special. What I did do, is out in the countless hours, rounds and money on testing the perfect urethane durometer and geometric shape for linear deceleration for the weight of a BCG moving reward. There are actual formulas for this. And I just shot many designs until I found one that did what I wanted.

    4) Tunsgten powder. One, it’s NOT cheaper. 2, it doesn’t work. I tried every combo you can think of. 3, any buffer that uses loose tungsten, uses granuales, not powder. Big difference. But I wanted more, I wanted to control what the weights were doing. Novel idea? Maybe. But it works well. And that is the only thing that matters. I put in the time and money testing to make sure it worked.

    And lastley, yes, it does slow BCG speed 95% going forward into battery. Is that bad? No. It does this by slowing the hit from the bolt moving reward. That’s where all the energy is taken up. That’s a good thing. Hurt reliablity by not being able to strip a round from the mag? I see where you’re going. But, that’s a spring issue. You don’t need to bounce or slingshot the buffer off the tube so hard it has enough force to strip a round. Prove this by locking the bolt rearward, the release it. There’s no stores up energy from recoil, and it still chambers a round with spring pressure alone. So that’s a non issue. And why would I release a product that wouldn’t even strip a round from a mag? Sure, a cycle rate reducing buffer is nothing new, I never claimed that. I do know very hydraulic buffer over ever worked on leaked. And the spring in the MGI buffer broke. I addressed both these issues with my design.

  • Nick Barry

    And the full auto video was not intended as a reliability test. It’s to give an example of ROF with the LARB installed. That’s it.

    • Flounder

      If that is its purpose…. could you do a side by side if a standard buffer? Preferably under a high speed camera. But i get there are some constraints like time and money.

      AND!!!! Tell me more about your prior experiments! If you can.

      • Nick Barry

        In full auto? I’m pretty sure I have those videos, done tons of them over the last year. If I can’t find it, I’ll make another one. In fact, I know I do somewhere, I did a video on the ROF reduction in my Shrike. Other experiments? Did tons, any I couldn’t think of. Anything in particular you’d like to know?

        • Flounder

          Just general information. Like a rifle with your buffer and then the same rifle with a mil spec one. Preferably side by side (a split screen video if that makes sense) so we can see exactly how much smoother the action runs and we can approximate the reduction in cyclic rate… in slow motion and positioned in such a way to show the rifle cycling.

          And if you could show the start of the carrier’s rearward travel and the instant when the carrier locks up. So we can see how much bolt bounce there is or is not. And when each buffer hits the rear of the buffer tube would be cool and informational to see.

  • Flounder

    That product if for a totally different “issue”

  • Nick Barry

    But, by your logic, you simply trust someone in the internet? You take these “engineers” word as gospel, yet not others? I clearly explained my intent for the graphs, and the flaws they pointed out while correct, did not debunk my use of the graphs and testing. It’s funny, I had a heavily educated/paid, degrees, high up engineer here locally with Sandia Labs tell me lie after lie after lie regarding the AR15 platform. He’s the dumbest smart guy I know. He could probably design a nuclear reactor on a napkin at Denny’s in 6.45 seconds. But, he didn’t have any real world knowledge about the weapon at hand. Then he proceeded to tell me all about how he would redesign my buffer so it would “work amazing”. Problem is, he just explained to me ever fail prototype I had already tried. I had already been there and it didn’t work. He had no idea. And he still doesn’t. Point being, don’t take our word for it. Try it yourself, or don’t. It really is that simple. Or just wait until these get a good reputation within the industry.

  • Rogertc1

    If they had this buffer during the Vietnam War we would have won it!!

  • SeeThroughYou

    I got to try this side by side w/ my tried and true H2 buffer during a machinegun demo at the LASC range and it was a noticeably softer impulse without weakening the ejection. My time back to target between rapid fire shots on steel was cut by 1/3.

    I actually found this article looking for Nick’s contact info after losing his business card the same day I got it.

  • I love the recoil concept, but I still want the buffer to travel straight back. The JP Silent Capture does a great job maintaining that smooth, straight back and forth.

    • SeeThroughYou

      I think the dome thingie meeting the opening in the back of a full bolt carrier keeps it more concentric during recoil than a plain flat surface. M16 carriers actually buck like broncos when they unlock and begin their rearward travel so anything applying some kind of live center ball or taper would minimize lateral movement a bit.

      Having shot one myself I can say it reminded me of the day I took the Ranchos off my Jeepspeed prerunner and replaced them with a set of Bilstein 7100s.

      Same part, doing the same thing but one of them definitely has more finesse than the other.

      My only 2 concerns are the softer buffer tip material(will it hold up over the long haul?) and the little spring inside(is it easily replaced/are their spares?).

      • Great analogy! Good points. I might order one just to see if it is as good as described and report back

      • Nick Barry

        The urethane cap is guaranteed for life. And yes, the spring inside is user serviceable and spare parts will always be available. Also, you can run loose mil spec weights inside my LARB as well if you ever don’t want the spring loaded weight.

    • Nick Barry

      What? My buffer cycles jut like any other, same as the JP as well. What are you thinking it does?

      • Its does the same basic function, yes. But one is more efficient. Standard buffer kits buckle (don’t stay straight going backwards while ejecting the cartridge). This is where the JP system adds an efficiency by going straight back and forth with less resistance.

        • Nick Barry

          How can you say one is more efficient? What tests have you run? And the LARB was designed to keep the BCG strait during cycling…

  • Tex

    Man this is hilarious. I’m the farthest thing from a technicall minded person so I have no idea if the rocket science guy is full of s**t or not. But what is obvious is that he’s trying to be pretty calm and stick to the facts and you’re freaking the f**k out for some damn reason. It’s actually pretty entertaining. What heppened dude, did a test engineer steal your wife or something? Show us on the doll where the data analyst touched you. Hahahahah. I hope you realize to 100% of people reading this thread you come off as a damn idiot.

  • Nick Barry

    What would you guys think of offering it as a steel parkerized part instead of stainless?

  • Strangelove

    The only real claimed benefits worth mentioning from all those bullet points is eliminating carrier tilt and reducing felt recoil. That being said, a POF anti-tilt buffer tube addresses one of those “problems” for $40.

    It is always good to see someone try to be innovative and make a legitimately useful product that either enhances functionality or reliability. As a recreational shooter, this product does not interest me. It may appeal to a competitive shooter or someone with access to full auto, assuming it performs as claimed.

    • Nick Barry

      The only issue I have with those anti tilt buffer tubes is they don’t fix anything. The still allow the the buffer to tilt. They just don’t allow it to tilt as much because it comes into contact with the inner tube sooner. Not really a fix. You still get all the same benefits in a semi as you do FA. Slowing your bolt speed is always (most of the time) a good thing.

  • Nick Barry

    I can agree, the difference in “powder” vs “granuales” was conveyed by a sales rep from a tungsten supplier last year while discussing various screen sizes. In specific reference to a very fine granual being considered a powder. So, seeing how you’re right and I’m wrong, what granule size did your hands on R&D tetermine to be the best in your buffer design? What weight with what granual size? And worst? As I’ve already said, I e been there and done that. Got lots of waste “granules” in buckets from that testing. Just curious what your testing has determined?