RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Reviews on parts for the PTW platform.

RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby The Reptile House on Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:49 pm

A few months back, Midwest Industries (MI) released a highly evolved, second generation update of their popular Gen 1 SS-Series tube rail. I really liked the look of the new rail but, more importantly, I was really attracted to the low weight and the narrowness of the outer diameter (OD). In fact, I liked it so much, I bought it the very first day it went on sale :)

Image
Image

Specs and a full list of parts included can be found here:

http://www.midwestindustriesinc.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=450

The rail's finish and the quality of machining is outstanding. I've yet to see an RS rail that doesn't exude quality, but this rail is just excellent - especially considering it's at the cheaper end of the market and more comparable in cost to high end airsoft rails. The anodising is flat and resistant to wear, the markings are clean and there are no sharp edg!es - everything is contoured and well finished.

The Gen 2 SS-Series is more than just a refresh of the Gen 1. It's a complete redesign. The biggest single revision is the way the rail attaches to the receiver. Gone is the old system, where the rail threads onto a proprietary barrel nut and is secured by a contra-rotated lock nut and anti-rotation is provided by a single screw (similar to the method still used on Yankee Hill Machine rails).

The Gen 2 utilises a clamping system similar to that popularised by the Troy TRX, but it fits over a proprietary barrel nut, which incorporates anti-rotation lugs in abundance.

Not only this, but unlike Troy and other brands which use or have used the clamp system, clearance between the receiver and the clamp area of the rail is more than enough to hinge the receiver all the way open. You can see the gap, here:

Image

So, no modification is required :)

The other elements in the Gen 2's redesign, which I see as the highly evolved part, are the low weight and the narrow OD. Tube rails are getting narrower and narrower. The Gen 1 had an OD of 2.00", as did a lot of tube rails of that generation. The Gen 2 is the narrowest of the true tubes, at 1.50" in OD. The Noveske NSR is 1.48" but clearly, that has a boxy cross section. There's not much in it, in any case. Compare that with the 1.74" of the Troy Alpha and the 1.80" of the Samson Evolution and you can probably tell that this isn't the kind of tube that will easily recess a suppressor!

In terms of weight, including the proprietary barrel nut, the Gen 2 is the lightest tube out there. The Noveske NSR is lighter, per se, but it has a heavier barrel nut. Either way, again, there's not much in it.

Anyway, the Gen 2 spoke to me and I decided I wanted it for my Supa Lite Carbine build.

The idea here was to keep the balance and handling of the classic carbine, but to simply replace the plastic handguard - which is oversized by today's standards - with a modern, slim, tube rail.

I also wanted to retain the carbine's iconic A2 front sight – which I think has a disproportionately postive effect on the look of the gun. So this is my take on classic with a twist, using the Gen 2 rail.!

Installation pretty much follows that of the Troy Alpha - aside from the clamping system, which is a no-brainier. An imperial allen key is included for the bolts. The Gen 2's packaging (a bubble pack, no less!) includes full instructions and the all important barrel nut torque specs, but my guide to installing the Troy Alpha may be of use:

http://www.systema-ptw.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=10546

Helpfully, the Gen 2 comes complete with a torque wrench head for the barrel nut. I've applied a little grease to the receiver's threads and have hand tightened the barrel nut.

Don't forget to place your hop/barrel assembly and cylinder in the upper, to support from the inside while clamped.

Here's what's required:

Image

It's very easy to time the nut to 12 O'clock, as the wrench head has a cut out, which allows you to get a good view. Here's the barrel nut timed:

Image

You can see that the barrel nut, which is supplied with the rail, is like the reverse of a standard barrel nut. The teeth are at the receiver end:

Image

I used a carry handle to help align the rail, while tightening the rail's clamp:

Image

Almost there...

Image

Et voila!

Image

I had a mare getting the A2 sight on (it was a new outer barrel, sight and pins), so as you can see, there's only one pin holding the sight on - although it's perfectly secure.

First impression when I used it for the first time? This is not a comfort build. But wow - just wow! It's so light, agile and clean :)

Time to get on with that comfort build, I think ;)
User avatar
The Reptile House
Admin Group
 
Posts: 1719
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:14 am
Location: Bristol, England

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby AlexMLD on Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:02 am

*edit

very nice guide, it looks sweet!
Last edited by AlexMLD on Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
AlexMLD
Newbie
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:50 pm
Location: NLD

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby The Reptile House on Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:25 pm

Many thanks mate :)

I'm not selling it - I've only had it in this configuration for a few months. It was a CQBR originally.
User avatar
The Reptile House
Admin Group
 
Posts: 1719
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:14 am
Location: Bristol, England

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby Jsmithy on Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:32 pm

Figured out how to make it any more comfortable yet, or have you decided to just get on with it? Looks pretty nice to me, if albeit a bit small in diameter for people with bear paws for hands :lol:
Jsmithy
Groupie
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:35 pm
Location: Rudloe, Wiltshire, United Kingdom

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby The Reptile House on Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:44 pm

I won't be changing this one, except to fit a Rogers Super Stoc, if I can get hold of one. Comfort is compromised for lightness and agility - which I'm happy with.

I have big hands and I've found tubes of around 1.74"-1.80" are more comfortable - particularly my Samson Evo, which is still my favourite rail.

My other carbine will be he basis for the comfort build. Step one was swapping the CTR out for an STR :)
User avatar
The Reptile House
Admin Group
 
Posts: 1719
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:14 am
Location: Bristol, England

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby AlexMLD on Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:27 pm

Mate, sorry for that. Guess i had my special - i can't see a f*@#ing thing - glasses on.
But seriousley, its a nice report!
User avatar
AlexMLD
Newbie
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:50 pm
Location: NLD

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby The Reptile House on Mon Aug 20, 2012 7:35 pm

No worries dude - and thanks once again for the praise :)
User avatar
The Reptile House
Admin Group
 
Posts: 1719
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:14 am
Location: Bristol, England

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby biscuitdunker on Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:49 pm

I like it, I like it a lot 8-)
I'm honking on a rock of pure airsoft. For kicks.

Image
User avatar
biscuitdunker
 
Posts: 704
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 10:25 am
Location: United Kingdom

Re: RS Midwest Industries Gen 2 SS-Series 7" Tube Rail

Postby The Reptile House on Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:54 pm

Most kind Stu :)
User avatar
The Reptile House
Admin Group
 
Posts: 1719
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 11:14 am
Location: Bristol, England


Return to PTW parts review section



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest