So, the carpal tunnel isn’t great and quite frankly I no longer want to be lugging around something the weight of a PTW on the wrong side of forty…but I still want to use a PTW. Jim and Simon from Gray Fox have given great feedback on their aluminium outer barrels, so I started thinking.

I had a word with my mate Tony (of Tackleberry fame) and although he really doesn’t like aluminium outer barrels, he recommended that if I really must, I should go with Dytac. My friend and team mate Mark had already started switching his PTWs to aluminium barrels and as luck would have it he’s using Dytac. I hefted his gat around and it really was very light indeed. Not just a diet – a starvation diet. At that point I wasn’t convinced I liked the balance of the gat…but it was seductively light.

Having a play around with Mark’s gat also made me realise that aluminium barrels – when fitted properly – are bloody solid. Aside from my initial prejudice to aluminium barrels, I was convinced they were flimsy and I’d fall over and bend one. I can’t see any way that’s going to happen – these things are extremely robust.

My mate John (who dresses up as an Imperial Stormtrooper) has an FCC aluminium barrel on his KAC PTW build and I was also impressed by the strong/light synergy of his barrel.

I’ve now bought three Dytac aluminium barrels – two of straight, civilian profile (one silver, one black) and one of mil profile. My intention was to wait and get them done when the opportunity arose – but my wrists aren’t getting any better and I couldn’t face another game with the leaden OEM barrel.

I also spoke to my friend Stu (of Project PTW). He’s not a fan of aluminium barrels either, but he understood my reasons for switching and most importantly he understood the urgency. I’d also noticed witness marks from the gear set of my Noveske lower on my RS Vltor MUR upper – so clearly that needed attention as well.

I packed the upper and sent it to Stu for some TLC. Stu was already familiar with the upper because he polished the inside for me a few months back – so my cylinders would fit without so much of a shove.

Stu’s comms are nothing less than excellent and he kept me informed at every step of the way – giving me options and generally making me feel like a valued customer. Not only that but he turned the job around super fast. It was back with me within the week – fully stripped, upper milled for extra clearance, latch on RS ejection port cover removed, Dytac barrel modded with a knock pin and everything built to a high standard and posted back via Special Delivery.

I’m really happy with the job so thanks very much Stu and Project PTW

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