Archive for the 'AR-15s' Category



Is 1:9 Twist Enough To Stabilize 77 Grain Matchking Bullets?

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 1 day ago

In previous posts we’ve discussed barrel twist and stabilization of heavier 5.56mm rounds.  I’d say that 1:9 twist is just fine for 77 grain bullets based on his results.  Then again, Rock River Arms makes good machines.

Navy SEAL Roasts My Home Defense Rifle

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 1 day ago

Okay, whatever.

I see this the same way as I do the stupid KeyMod versus M-LOK debate.  It’s a waste of time.  Find the sling you want, practice with it, mount the sling where you want, get the optic you want, practice with it, make it modular to the extent you need, dress it up the way you want to, and ignore everyone else because your choices are what matter.

The only expert on what you want is you. Why on earth, after building rifles that are the ultimate in modularity, adjustability, adaptability and flexibility, does the community want to force everyone into sameness?

The KeyMod Versus M-LOK Debate

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 4 days ago

Daniel Defense.

If you’ve done any online research on which type of rail to get for your AR, you’ve probably come across more than one article, forum, or video proclaiming that KeyMod rails are dying or, in the opinion of some, already dead. But is it true?

First off, let’s be clear about one thing—there are plenty of firearms out there equipped with KeyMod rails, including the Daniel Defense DDM4ISR, so the rail system is not being called dying or dead by some because you can no longer find or buy it. There are also still plenty of accessories from many different manufacturers available for KeyMod rails. So, those using terms like “dying” or “dead” are referring to KeyMod’s status compared to that of its main competitor, the M-LOK rail. But KeyMod, M-LOK, and Picatinny rails are all viable options for an AR rail. Which is why all three types are manufactured and sold by Daniel Defense.

The Origin of KeyMod’s So-Called Death

KeyMod was developed by VLTOR and released in 2012, so it had roughly three years to gain some traction before MAGPUL released its M-LOK system in 2015.

I’ve said before that KeyMod was designed by Noveske and M-LOK by Magpul.  As noted above, this isn’t quite the case.  KeyMod was designed by VLTOR and released through Noveske, soon becoming open source.

Unlike a Picatinny rail, which is a “positive” or “male” system and can be bulky, sharp, and tough on the hands, both KeyMod and M-LOK rails are lower-profile “negative” or “female” systems. For those of you not familiar with either system, here’s a brief description of how they work:

  • KeyMod works by inserting an accessory’s mounting nuts through the large holes of key-shaped slots (which resemble slots in industrial shelving) in the handguard. You then slide the accessory forward, into the smaller front portion of the slot, and tighten the mounting bolts.
  • M-LOK works by inserting the “T-nuts” of an accessory through slots in the handguard and then tightening the bolts on the accessory. This rotates the T-nuts 90 degrees and locks the accessory in place.

As you might imagine, as with any new gun accessory, as the systems were introduced, there were fans of both, and many weren’t shy about pronouncing their choice superior to all others. For a couple of years, these two systems went mano e mano as a lighter-weight, lower-profile option to a Picatinny rail as the debate raged on.

But then, in 2016, the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division, conducted testing that compared KeyMod and M-LOK head-to-head. You can view the details of the test and the results here, but suffice it to say that M-LOK fared better than KeyMod in testing categories that included repeatability, endurance, rough handling, a drop test, and failure load.

After Crane’s test results were presented in May of 2017, many considered the debate over and pronounced M-LOK the superior choice. But does one study really spell the death of an entire rail system? Daniel Defense obviously thinks not, for the following reasons:

1. Most AR Owners Are Not Members of the Special Ops Community

The study conducted by Crane was at the behest of USSOCOM, to determine which rail system might best meet their needs. But, if you’re a recreational shooter, chances are you’re not going to put the rail on your rifle through the same level of use and abuse as elite military professionals. While it’s true that many consumers want to use the same gear as military and law enforcement pros, for the vast majority of shooters, a KeyMod rail is going to perform flawlessly.

2. KeyMod Accessories Don’t Protrude as far into the Rail as M-LOK Accessories

The bolts that tighten the mounting nuts of a KeyMod accessory do not protrude through the rail as physically far as the bolts that tighten the T-nuts of an M-LOK accessory, so a KeyMod rail can fit snugger and be closer to the barrel of a firearm.

This may not sound like much of an issue, but on firearms with very little clearance between the barrel and the rail, it can be—especially if the bolt of an M-LOK T-nut were to protrude far enough to actually touch the barrel and affect its harmonics. Which is precisely why a KeyMod MFR XL 15” rail is used on the DDM4ISR, which features a suppressor as an integral part of the barrel.

“The way M-LOK fasteners on accessories attach to the handguard, they would interfere with the suppressor tube underneath the handguards,” explains Daniel Defense Law Enforcement Sales Manager Joe Marler. “You cannot mount an M-LOK accessory where that suppressor tube is present. KeyMod accessories have very low-profile fasteners, and that’s the reason we use a KeyMod rail.”

Mr. GunsnGear explains the same thing in his YouTube review of the DDM4ISR at about the 11:30 mark of this 24-minute review. He also backs up our #1 point with his review when he states, “For 99.9% of the people out there, KeyMod is going to be just fine. KeyMod has been used by special operations units around the world, and nobody died because of KeyMod.”

I didn’t even look up the purported 2016 report and don’t care what’s in it.  Nor do I think this has anything to do with whether you intend on trying out for JSOC.  You can find a report to tell you anything you want to hear.

The whole debate is childish in my opinion, or a different way of saying it is that while I think the DD article is informative and good, to say that one approach is “dead” reeks of marketing lies to me.

I think it comes down to what you want to use.  For me, I’ve seen the T-nuts on M-LOK wiggle loose and parts fall off, and that’s after aggressive tightening.  I think they’re harder to install, and finally, KeyMod is lighter by design.

KeyMod works with less forend metal (with its cutouts) without creating a stress concentration point from sharp edges.

I prefer KeyMod.  Others prefer M-LOK.  Buy what you want, but don’t get swept into hours of reading to determine what “experts” prefer.  Figure out what’s best for you.

AR-15s Tags: ,

Use Of The Modern Sporting Rifle In Bear Defense

BY Herschel Smith
3 weeks, 4 days ago

Dean Weingarten.

Before I graduated from high school, I overheard the older brother of a close friend talking about shooting a bear. The bear had been discovered in a den, during the Wisconsin deer season. As I recall, in 1968, such a harvest would have been legal.

The older brother was a Vietnam veteran. He approached the den with another vet. The brother suggested the other vet poke into the den to see if the bear were still there.

The other veteran said no, he would not do it. The brother said, well, in Vietnam, you went into holes to get Charlie.

Whereupon, the other veteran said: yes, but I had a different rifle then. (speaking of the M16).

He considered the M16 a superior gun for close-range bear defense than the common 30-30, whether Winchester 94 or Marlin 336.

At the time, I thought it strange someone would prefer a .223 semi-automatic rifle to a 30-30 or larger caliber rifle.

50 years and considerable time investigating actual defensive shootings of bears later, my opinion has become less certain.

Of the defensive bear shootings I have found, four of them were with rifles reasonably characterized as semi-automatic civilian versions of popular military rifles.

All four defensive shootings were successful. Modern sporting rifles most commonly are AR15 or AK47 style semi-automatic rifles. They are the most popular rifles in today’s America. It is certain more bears will be shot with them in the future.  Here are the four incidents …

I would absolutely feel safe anywhere in North America with an AR-15, including against bears, as long as I had a standard capacity magazine full of ammunition.

AR-15 Stoppage Clearance

BY Herschel Smith
1 month, 3 weeks ago

Brownells On Causes Of AR-15 Malfunctions

BY Herschel Smith
2 months ago

Examples Of AR-15 Bolt Failures

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 4 weeks ago

There are two takeaways for me.  First, make sure to inspect the lugs on the bolt when you clean it, especially on either side of the extractor.

Second, have a spare BCG.

Then there is the expression “clicky and no bangy.”  That will probably roll around in my head for a while.

AR-15 Gas Block Alignment

BY Herschel Smith
3 months ago

This is a short but very informative video.

Birthday Of Eugene Stoner

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 1 week ago

November 22, 1922, is the birthday of Eugene Stoner.  Readers know we say the name of Eugene Stoner only in hushed reverence here on these pages.  What better way to remember him than to listen directly to him, and listen to his friends weigh in.

Brownells: How To Identify AR-15 Trigger Springs

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 2 weeks ago


26th MEU (10)
Abu Muqawama (12)
ACOG (2)
ACOGs (1)
Afghan National Army (36)
Afghan National Police (17)
Afghanistan (679)
Afghanistan SOFA (4)
Agriculture in COIN (3)
AGW (1)
Air Force (35)
Air Power (9)
al Qaeda (83)
Ali al-Sistani (1)
America (21)
Ammunition (142)
Animals (93)
Ansar al Sunna (15)
Anthropology (3)
Antonin Scalia (1)
AR-15s (263)
Arghandab River Valley (1)
Arlington Cemetery (2)
Army (78)
Assassinations (2)
Assault Weapon Ban (27)
Australian Army (6)
Azerbaijan (4)
Backpacking (2)
Badr Organization (8)
Baitullah Mehsud (21)
Basra (17)
BATFE (108)
Battle of Bari Alai (2)
Battle of Wanat (18)
Battle Space Weight (3)
Bin Laden (7)
Blogroll (3)
Blogs (22)
Body Armor (20)
Books (3)
Border War (11)
Brady Campaign (1)
Britain (38)
British Army (35)
Camping (4)
Canada (3)
Castle Doctrine (1)
Caucasus (6)
CENTCOM (7)
Center For a New American Security (8)
Charity (3)
China (14)
Christmas (12)
CIA (28)
Civilian National Security Force (3)
Col. Gian Gentile (9)
Combat Outposts (3)
Combat Video (2)
Concerned Citizens (6)
Constabulary Actions (3)
Coolness Factor (2)
COP Keating (4)
Corruption in COIN (4)
Council on Foreign Relations (1)
Counterinsurgency (216)
DADT (2)
David Rohde (1)
Defense Contractors (2)
Department of Defense (164)
Department of Homeland Security (26)
Disaster Preparedness (4)
Distributed Operations (5)
Dogs (12)
Donald Trump (26)
Drone Campaign (3)
EFV (3)
Egypt (12)
El Salvador (1)
Embassy Security (1)
Enemy Spotters (1)
Expeditionary Warfare (17)
F-22 (2)
F-35 (1)
Fallujah (17)
Far East (3)
Fathers and Sons (2)
Favorite (1)
Fazlullah (3)
FBI (32)
Featured (184)
Federal Firearms Laws (18)
Financing the Taliban (2)
Firearms (1,309)
Football (1)
Force Projection (35)
Force Protection (4)
Force Transformation (1)
Foreign Policy (27)
Fukushima Reactor Accident (6)
Ganjgal (1)
Garmsir (1)
general (15)
General Amos (1)
General James Mattis (1)
General McChrystal (43)
General McKiernan (6)
General Rodriguez (3)
General Suleimani (9)
Georgia (19)
GITMO (2)
Google (1)
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (1)
Gun Control (1,306)
Guns (1,810)
Guns In National Parks (3)
Haditha Roundup (10)
Haiti (2)
HAMAS (7)
Haqqani Network (9)
Hate Mail (8)
Hekmatyar (1)
Heroism (4)
Hezbollah (12)
High Capacity Magazines (16)
High Value Targets (9)
Homecoming (1)
Homeland Security (1)
Horses (1)
Humor (33)
ICOS (1)
IEDs (7)
Immigration (92)
India (10)
Infantry (4)
Information Warfare (2)
Infrastructure (2)
Intelligence (23)
Intelligence Bulletin (6)
Iran (170)
Iraq (379)
Iraq SOFA (23)
Islamic Facism (64)
Islamists (95)
Israel (18)
Jaish al Mahdi (21)
Jalalabad (1)
Japan (2)
Jihadists (80)
John Nagl (5)
Joint Intelligence Centers (1)
JRTN (1)
Kabul (1)
Kajaki Dam (1)
Kamdesh (9)
Kandahar (12)
Karachi (7)
Kashmir (2)
Khost Province (1)
Khyber (11)
Knife Blogging (4)
Korea (4)
Korengal Valley (3)
Kunar Province (20)
Kurdistan (3)
Language in COIN (5)
Language in Statecraft (1)
Language Interpreters (2)
Lashkar-e-Taiba (2)
Law Enforcement (4)
Lawfare (7)
Leadership (6)
Lebanon (6)
Leon Panetta (2)
Let Them Fight (2)
Libya (14)
Lines of Effort (3)
Littoral Combat (8)
Logistics (50)
Long Guns (1)
Lt. Col. Allen West (2)
Marine Corps (263)
Marines in Bakwa (1)
Marines in Helmand (67)
Marjah (4)
MEDEVAC (2)
Media (59)
Medical (58)
Memorial Day (5)
Mexican Cartels (35)
Mexico (51)
Michael Yon (6)
Micromanaging the Military (7)
Middle East (1)
Military Blogging (26)
Military Contractors (4)
Military Equipment (24)
Militia (5)
Mitt Romney (3)
Monetary Policy (1)
Moqtada al Sadr (2)
Mosul (4)
Mountains (25)
MRAPs (1)
Mullah Baradar (1)
Mullah Fazlullah (1)
Mullah Omar (3)
Musa Qala (4)
Music (22)
Muslim Brotherhood (6)
Nation Building (2)
National Internet IDs (1)
National Rifle Association (72)
NATO (15)
Navy (22)
Navy Corpsman (1)
NCOs (3)
News (1)
NGOs (2)
Nicholas Schmidle (2)
Now Zad (19)
NSA (3)
NSA James L. Jones (6)
Nuclear (57)
Nuristan (8)
Obama Administration (221)
Offshore Balancing (1)
Operation Alljah (7)
Operation Khanjar (14)
Ossetia (7)
Pakistan (165)
Paktya Province (1)
Palestine (5)
Patriotism (7)
Patrolling (1)
Pech River Valley (11)
Personal (65)
Petraeus (14)
Pictures (1)
Piracy (13)
Pistol (2)
Pizzagate (21)
Police (512)
Police in COIN (3)
Policy (15)
Politics (876)
Poppy (2)
PPEs (1)
Prisons in Counterinsurgency (12)
Project Gunrunner (20)
PRTs (1)
Qatar (1)
Quadrennial Defense Review (2)
Quds Force (13)
Quetta Shura (1)
RAND (3)
Recommended Reading (14)
Refueling Tanker (1)
Religion (221)
Religion and Insurgency (19)
Reuters (1)
Rick Perry (4)
Rifles (1)
Roads (4)
Rolling Stone (1)
Ron Paul (1)
ROTC (1)
Rules of Engagement (75)
Rumsfeld (1)
Russia (30)
Sabbatical (1)
Sangin (1)
Saqlawiyah (1)
Satellite Patrols (2)
Saudi Arabia (4)
Scenes from Iraq (1)
Second Amendment (384)
Second Amendment Quick Hits (2)
Secretary Gates (9)
Sharia Law (3)
Shura Ittehad-ul-Mujahiden (1)
SIIC (2)
Sirajuddin Haqqani (1)
Small Wars (72)
Snipers (9)
Sniveling Lackeys (2)
Soft Power (4)
Somalia (8)
Sons of Afghanistan (1)
Sons of Iraq (2)
Special Forces (28)
Squad Rushes (1)
State Department (21)
Statistics (1)
Sunni Insurgency (10)
Support to Infantry Ratio (1)
Supreme Court (23)
Survival (42)
SWAT Raids (55)
Syria (38)
Tactical Drills (2)
Tactical Gear (6)
Taliban (167)
Taliban Massing of Forces (4)
Tarmiyah (1)
TBI (1)
Technology (17)
Tehrik-i-Taliban (78)
Terrain in Combat (1)
Terrorism (95)
Thanksgiving (10)
The Anbar Narrative (23)
The Art of War (5)
The Fallen (1)
The Long War (20)
The Surge (3)
The Wounded (13)
Thomas Barnett (1)
Transnational Insurgencies (5)
Tribes (5)
TSA (22)
TSA Ineptitude (13)
TTPs (3)
U.S. Border Patrol (5)
U.S. Border Security (14)
U.S. Sovereignty (17)
UAVs (2)
UBL (4)
Ukraine (3)
Uncategorized (56)
Universal Background Check (3)
Unrestricted Warfare (4)
USS Iwo Jima (2)
USS San Antonio (1)
Uzbekistan (1)
V-22 Osprey (4)
Veterans (3)
Vietnam (1)
War & Warfare (309)
War & Warfare (40)
War Movies (4)
War Reporting (21)
Wardak Province (1)
Warriors (6)
Waziristan (1)
Weapons and Tactics (71)
West Point (1)
Winter Operations (1)
Women in Combat (21)
WTF? (1)
Yemen (1)

March 2021
February 2021
January 2021
December 2020
November 2020
October 2020
September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006

about · archives · contact · register

Copyright © 2006-2021 Captain's Journal. All rights reserved.