The right choice of ar15, what you need to know

The right choice of ar15, what you need to know

In this article, we will reflect on the topic of what you need to know about the AR15 rifle in order to make the right choice. Let's talk about the components of which it consists and what to look for when assembling your own AR.

All elements of carbines and AR-15 rifles that are not their main parts are called the capacious word “kit” in the shooting community. This includes the forearm and its attachment system, pistol grip, USM bracket, stock, as well as all kinds of accessories - additional handles, mounts for flashlights and laser designators, devices for fixing belts, etc. etc.


Most variants of the AR-15 are sold in a basic body kit similar to the army one for the M4 carbine: a conical plastic handguard with a spring-loaded deltoid ring attachment system, an A2-type pistol grip with an interdigital protrusion, a carrying handle with a diopter entirely in it and a primitive regular telescopic stock. However, the AR-15 is not in vain called the LEGO constructor for adult boys, and therefore most of the owners of such firearms with interest and enthusiasm are engaged in experiments on selecting the optimal, in their opinion, body kit for carbines and rifles from third-party manufacturers. And there are already plenty to choose from! The variety and abundance of body kit and accessories for the AR-15 is truly amazing. What is worth buying from all this?

Firstly, in order to improve the accuracy and accuracy of shooting, many shooters replace the standard forearm with a cantilever one, in which the barrel of the firearm is hung out - that is, it no longer contacts the forearm all the way from the receiver to the very muzzle. This often requires the replacement or modification of the gas block.

A cantilever handguard with Picatinny rails for attaching possible accessories is called a “rail” RIS-handguard (Rail Integrated System), or a Quad Rail handguard (if it carries four long bars - top, bottom, right and left). Lightweight aluminum or carbon (carbon composite) handguards with the KeyMod system, which allows you to quickly install removable Picatinny rails of any size in exactly the places where they are needed for attaching accessories, have become the latest fashion in this area. Whereas the standard M16 and M4 handguards are usually short and leave the gas block open (because it is integral with the base of the front sight), modern cantilever handguard systems include options that reach almost to the muzzle. This is convenient for holding the firearm with a sports "long" grip - when the left hand holding the forearm is almost completely extended and is used to quickly aim the firearm at the target.

If the cantilever handguard and the hanging barrel are not priorities, you can change the standard handguard to an alternative one, also consisting of two halves. At the same time, the method of its installation and the configuration of the gas block remain unchanged, but the shooter gets the opportunity to install additional accessories on the forearm.

A good addition to the long cantilever handguard will be the front handle, which will make holding the firearm more comfortable. They come in a huge variety of shapes and sizes, from simple finger rests and angled grips to fairly long models with integrated bipods, a flashlight, a laser pointer, and other utilities.

The Norinco CQ-A carbine (above) is usually purchased for further self-tuning. But there are variants of the AR-15 with factory tuning - for example, the Bushmaster M4 MOE in a body kit from Magpul (below)

Regular pistol grips also suit the few, and they are being replaced by alternatives of various forms and materials of manufacture. For example, rubberized models such as Magpul MOE or analogues from CAA, FAB Defense, TAPCO turn out to be very comfortable. Some companies make prefabricated handles that can be configured to fit the anatomy of your own hand. Most handles also make it possible to usefully use their internal cavity - for storing oilers, keys, batteries, spare parts and other small items.

Finally, butts. More often than not, alternative models - such as the popular Magpul CTR - immediately eliminate the annoying backlash of the base model stocks. Some butts have additional internal cavities and are equipped with sockets for quick-release belt fastening, others can be equipped with adjustable cheek pads or spare magazine holders. There are also butts for high-precision tasks - with adjustable cheek height and overall length (Magpul PRS), or even with a built-in rear monopod (CAA ARS). There are also ultra-compact options for short-range shooting - the so-called CQB models.

Mechanical sights are usually a spare, so they are made collapsible, like the Magpul MBUS. Usually they can be used without removing the main collimator (Dong-In Optical IB-32) or optical sight

As the main sights for the AR-15, most shooters use red dot or optical sights. In both cases, it is necessary to monitor the height of their installation so as not to impede the cocking of the carbine bolt. Most shooters also prefer to mount the collimator in such a way that they can also see mechanical sights through it if necessary (this is called co-witnessing). Sometimes collimators are used in conjunction with a folding 3x/4x magnifier to simplify aimed shooting at small targets at distances over 50 m.

The standard handguard for M4 type carbines consists of two plastic halves (above). When replacing it with a long cantilever handguard, it may be necessary to replace the gas block with the front sight

Medium and high magnification optical sights will need a special forward mount to mount correctly. The choice here is huge, and if fans of practical and tactical shooting are most often satisfied with magnifications of 1-6x, then for high-precision models, maximum values ​​of 10x, 16x, 20x and more are not uncommon. There are also special models of sights with ballistic reticles marked for the trajectory of an average .223 Rem / 5.56 NATO cartridge at various distances. They can be effectively used for shooting at ranges up to 500 m at a chest target, and sometimes even further.

The standard handguard for M4 type carbines consists of two plastic halves (above). When replacing it with a long cantilever handguard, it may be necessary to replace the gas block with the front sight

Mechanical sights most often act as a backup, so they try to make them folding (Magpul MBUS), or set them at an angle of 45 degrees so as not to interfere with the optics. In this case, the carbine has to be turned to the side, but the arrows usually master this technique rather quickly.

Underbarrel flashlights and laser designators also often accompany tactical firearms, and just an immense number of systems and mounts for them are produced for the AR-15. But whether it is necessary or not and in what form - it's up to you to choose.

Perhaps this is a small part of what could be said about the features of this rifle and its components. There is a huge selection of AP15s on the market from different manufacturers. And we hope that this brief digression into the world of the most popular American self-loading firearms will be useful to you - both in choosing and in operating a rifle. And remember that when buying a firearm, you need to try it on, touch it with your hands and understand how it suits you, do not be too lazy to go to the shooting range and chat with those who are familiar with the features of small arms.