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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I finally broke down and bought an RDB (RDB17) this past Saturday. Got tired of waiting for Kel Tec to offer one in 6.5 Grendel. Figured the best way for them to do that would be to buy something I wasn't too keen on having. But I'm thinning out my collection and needed a 5.56 rifle. Plus I got a pre-pandemic deal, so, shiny.

Anyway... I took the gun out to the range and ran 100 rounds through it to function test and get sighted in. Everything went well the whole afternoon. Got the gas dialed in and got it sighted in in a few rounds. Last mag of the day, my wife is shooting, fires her last shot, bolt locks open, she drops the mag and goes to close the bolt. The charging handle will not budge. I thought she wasn't pulling hard enough or maybe she had a double feed. I inspected the rifle, tried to pull the charging handle and I could not get it to move. I was able to press the charging handle against a bench and got it to retract. Let the bolt go home and it went with full force forward. After that I couldn't pull the charging handle again without pressing it against the table..

I got home, and was able to strip the gun down. The pin in the middle of the lower actually came out completely without any effort. The other pins were captured. I checked the bolt and recoil spring to make sure it was in the channel and nothing was bent or kinked. Everything looked fine. What wasn't fine was the long metal sleeve that was supposed to be attached to the charging handle. It wasn't. It just fell out once I pulled the bolt assembly out. The charging handle stayed with the piston in the barrel assembly.

I was able to get the charging handle back on the sleeve, though it took some effort with a rubber mallet. I put the gun back to together and it appears to be working again. I can cycle it without any binding or hang-ups.

I did a search, but didn't find anything related. Anyone else have a similar issue? I plan to shoot it some more soon, and if it does it again, I'll send it back to Kel Tec to fix it.

TL:DR - New RDB ran great, then didn't. Charging handle separated from metal tube/sleeve. Couldn't rack the gun. Had to strip gun and put the handle and sleeve back together with much gentle hammering. All is well...for now.
 

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I never heard of that symptom but if it was me I'd send it in. I had a problem before I fired 20 rounds. I got it in and returned pretty quickly but have been afraid to do more with it after one trip to the range to verify it worked now. Ammo is too expensive right now to try again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I never heard of that symptom but if it was me I'd send it in. I had a problem before I fired 20 rounds. I got it in and returned pretty quickly but have been afraid to do more with it after one trip to the range to verify it worked now. Ammo is too expensive right now to try again.
Yep send it back. Kel tec has great turn around and communication.
I'm going to shoot it until it comes apart again. The charging handle is just a press fit to the tube, so if it happened once, I'm sure it will happen again. Right now it looks and feels fine. If I send it in now, they may send it back saying they found nothing wrong because unless it breaks on them, it will appear to be in working order. Would rather send back something that's obviously broken. I'll probably call them to get their take on it, however.

I just wanted to know if anyone else had experienced anything like that with their charging handle.
 

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I dont know if if its the cause because no one has ever confirmed it, but I believe the action spring rod will jump out of its cup in the rear and get offset. When this happens, the bolt will get wedged at the rear. Then consequently, any attempt to free it with the charging handle will result in the charging handle tube getting wedged as well.
When you used force to move the handle forward, you separated the two handle parts.


Do this as an experiment. take the top but plate screw out, push a Allen wrench or other metal rod in there and look through the ejection port. You will see that the rod is free to move over an inch forward and settle anywhere on the buffer.

My easy solution was to install another buffer (404) to add more retention for the rod.
My ultimate solution is to press on a threaded rod end and have that top screw retain the rod. That would complicate field stripping, however.

I would buy a new charge handle from KT and red loctite the separated one together.

Next time you get that same jam, remove the top but screw and do a depth check to see if the rod is out of place. Come back and let us know please.

Glean:
(1) Double 404 buffer | Community for Kel-Tec Shooters (thektog.org)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I dont know if if its the cause because no one has ever confirmed it, but I believe the action spring rod will jump out of its cup in the rear and get offset. When this happens, the bolt will get wedged at the rear. Then consequently, any attempt to free it with the charging handle will result in the charging handle tube getting wedged as well.
When you used force to move the handle forward, you separated the two handle parts.


Do this as an experiment. take the top but plate screw out, push a Allen wrench or other metal rod in there and look through the ejection port. You will see that the rod is free to move over an inch forward and settle anywhere on the buffer.

My easy solution was to install another buffer (404) to add more retention for the rod.
My ultimate solution is to press on a threaded rod end and have that top screw retain the rod. That would complicate field stripping, however.

I would buy a new charge handle from KT and red loctite the separated one together.

Next time you get that same jam, remove the top but screw and do a depth check to see if the rod is out of place. Come back and let us know please.

Glean:
(1) Double 404 buffer | Community for Kel-Tec Shooters (thektog.org)

I never used force to move the handle forward. Only used force to press the action open. Once the action was open, the bolt and the charging handle moved forward as normal under spring pressure. I did check the chamber as best as I could and did not see the rod out of place.

I don't think Loctite will even fit between the charging handle and the tube. I really had to give it several good whacks to get it to press fit back on the tube. I was being careful not to bend the tube or break the charging handle from its ring, however, so I could have applied more force, otherwise.

In the thread you referenced, you never said how you got the second buffer to stay in place. What magic did you use?
 

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Fingers! it just sandwiches in front. the cutouts for the rails were not perfect so it was a friction fit, for me.
If this is not the case for you, some double sided tape should work.
 

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So I finally broke down and bought an RDB (RDB17) this past Saturday. Got tired of waiting for Kel Tec to offer one in 6.5 Grendel. Figured the best way for them to do that would be to buy something I wasn't too keen on having. But I'm thinning out my collection and needed a 5.56 rifle. Plus I got a pre-pandemic deal, so, shiny.

Anyway... I took the gun out to the range and ran 100 rounds through it to function test and get sighted in. Everything went well the whole afternoon. Got the gas dialed in and got it sighted in in a few rounds. Last mag of the day, my wife is shooting, fires her last shot, bolt locks open, she drops the mag and goes to close the bolt. The charging handle will not budge. I thought she wasn't pulling hard enough or maybe she had a double feed. I inspected the rifle, tried to pull the charging handle and I could not get it to move. I was able to press the charging handle against a bench and got it to retract. Let the bolt go home and it went with full force forward. After that I couldn't pull the charging handle again without pressing it against the table..

I got home, and was able to strip the gun down. The pin in the middle of the lower actually came out completely without any effort. The other pins were captured. I checked the bolt and recoil spring to make sure it was in the channel and nothing was bent or kinked. Everything looked fine. What wasn't fine was the long metal sleeve that was supposed to be attached to the charging handle. It wasn't. It just fell out once I pulled the bolt assembly out. The charging handle stayed with the piston in the barrel assembly.

I was able to get the charging handle back on the sleeve, though it took some effort with a rubber mallet. I put the gun back to together and it appears to be working again. I can cycle it without any binding or hang-ups. I have the C model and never had any issues. Before taking mine to the range like any gun I buy I take it down and do a thorough cleaning and inspection. I don’t trust some guy on the assembly line not putting it together correctly or making sure it’s lubed Properly. I must have disassembled it about 5 times and learned how everything worked. It a practice I’ve been doing since my service days back in the early 70’s.

I did a search, but didn't find anything related. Anyone else have a similar issue? I plan to shoot it some more soon, and if it does it again, I'll send it back to Kel Tec to fix it.

TL:DR - New RDB ran great, then didn't. Charging handle separated from metal tube/sleeve. Couldn't rack the gun. Had to strip gun and put the handle and sleeve back together with much gentle hammering. All is well...for now.
 

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I sent mine in and I got it back in 6 days I was shocked how fast they fixed it and sent it back. They sent it back with a paper telling me what they did to fix it and what they set the gas at. Haven't had a problem with it since
 

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If you have the extra cabbage get a RDB M-LOK Forend - KelTec it takes 10 seconds to put on and take off. It's a lot lighter your barrel will cool of faster plus it looks a lot better then that big chunk of polymer it comes with. For $10 get a trigger spring from Mcarbo it makes the already good trigger even better. A extended bolt release from Lucky Irishman is the last mod I can think of then you're set
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I sent mine in and I got it back in 6 days I was shocked how fast they fixed it and sent it back. They sent it back with a paper telling me what they did to fix it and what they set the gas at. Haven't had a problem with it since
If you have the extra cabbage get a RDB M-LOK Forend - KelTec it takes 10 seconds to put on and take off. It's a lot lighter your barrel will cool of faster plus it looks a lot better then that big chunk of polymer it comes with. For $10 get a trigger spring from Mcarbo it makes the already good trigger even better. A extended bolt release from Lucky Irishman is the last mod I can think of then you're set
Not sending mine back until it breaks again. I've dealt with KT support before. No worries about them making it right, but it's not broken currently, so sending it in would be futile.

I bought the Lucky Irishman Rhino Rail and got the MCARBO trigger spring, as well as the Dan Haga magwell. May get some other stuff later, but I'm good for now.
 

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For $10 get a trigger spring from Mcarbo it makes the already good trigger even better.
I would love a lighter trigger in it. But I still, years later, I wake up in a cold sweat after having a nightmare about installing trigger parts in my sub2k. Other people might have no problems, but that's no guarantee that I won't. I'd send it out and pay whatever it takes to have it installed, but do it myself? No way. It's not happening.

One thing to consider in a cold AO, is that an aluminum fore-end will suck the heat right out of your support hand even with gloves on. That's why I won't put an aluminum fore-end on any gun that might see serious use.
 

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KTs are neat, but not SHTF reliable.
Yes, there are those that run 3 gun and those that are perfect. All I can say is there are several failure points on an RDB that aren't on an AR or AK.
 

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KTs are neat, but not SHTF reliable.
Yes, there are those that run 3 gun and those that are perfect. All I can say is there are several failure points on an RDB that aren't on an AR or AK.
Thanks for an honest response. IMHO, a 'neat' gun that isn't SHTF reliable is an expensive paperweight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Damn, telling commentary on Kel-Tec... If it is that unreliable that you are willing to state this then maybe it's time to get a more reliable forearm.
Wow, so what you got out of that is that I was condemning Kel Tec because I had one issue? Could the charging handle come apart again? Sure. I haven't had a chance to test it since I put it back together. The RDB is not my main HD rifle. It was never intended for that purpose. I've got other guns for HD, SD, SHTF, etc.

IF the charging handle (or anything else) breaks, I'll send it back for repair. KT will make it right. The End.

Thanks for an honest response. IMHO, a 'neat' gun that isn't SHTF reliable is an expensive paperweight.
I've got guns that I wouldn't dream of using for SHTF, but they are fun as hell for competition or plinking at the range. I'm well past need when it comes to what I buy. Not everything has to be for defensive purposes.
 

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Wow, so what you got out of that is that I was condemning Kel Tec because I had one issue? Could the charging handle come apart again? Sure. I haven't had a chance to test it since I put it back together. The RDB is not my main HD rifle. It was never intended for that purpose. I've got other guns for HD, SD, SHTF, etc.

IF the charging handle (or anything else) breaks, I'll send it back for repair. KT will make it right. The End.



I've got guns that I wouldn't dream of using for SHTF, but they are fun as hell for competition or plinking at the range. I'm well past need when it comes to what I buy. Not everything has to be for defensive purposes.
Well good for you. Really good for you. BUT most people don't have the luxury of more than one or two guns. Why I wouldn't recommend a KT anything if the purpose was the primary HD gun.
 

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People buy things with their own reasonings. I don't think the reason matters to you unless you are the one buying it. With that said, I probably won't go out of my way to recommend or not recommend people to buy something such as a weapon. It would be a good dinner topic with friends but with a stranger on the internet forum? Well I will let you make your own decision after viewing the facts on your own. What you deem as fact is also up to you, and remember we have already talked too much of the pros and cons of KT here or anywhere else.
 
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