Small Unit Tactics contact patriot-dawn Patriot Rising

A different approach to the AR charging handle

Home Forums The Armory – Gear and Equipment Weapons A different approach to the AR charging handle

This topic contains 45 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of First Sergeant First Sergeant 1 year, 3 months ago.

Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 46 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #51849
    Profile photo of Rhino11
    rhino11
    Participant

    To my mind the charging handle is the Achilles heel of the AR series rifles. When you bend one (and if you shoot long enough you probably will) the rifle is hard broke until the handle is replaced. After market replacements (especially the steel handles recommended by Jerry Miculek) are stronger than stock and often a bit easier to get a purchase on. The extended handles do come with a significant downside: they tend to drag or hang up on plate carriers, chest rigs or our pale pink bodies. The slicker you can keep the left side of your rifle (assuming you are right handed), the better.

    My biggest gripe with the AR charging handle / buffer tube arrangement is that it is nearly impossible for me to achieve a decent cheek weld without going to something expensive (and heavy) like the MAGPUL PRS stock.

    A friend sent me a link to a product called the ‘Habu’ charging handle ( https://falcon37.com ) which intrigued me enough that I ordered one through Brownells. I like it. Not only does the handle give a good cheek weld, but I no longer have that annoying latch poking me in the chest when I carry the rifle slung up.

    One further consideration: three of the gals in my family shoot long guns from their left shoulders because they are left eye dominant. For them even extended ambidextrous charging handles are a problem because the forward assist gets in their way when performing ‘immediate action’ drills. I did a trial install of a HABU on my daughter’s AR the other day. “Thanks Pops!” was the response, and then I had to order a couple more…

    #51850
    Profile photo of First Sergeant
    First Sergeant
    Moderator

    I wish you would have contacted me before you bought this charging handle.

    I first read about it about a year ago. Notice nothing has been said about it anywhere on this forum. There is a reason for that. It is a solution in search of a problem.

    I would not recommend anyone using this. I can break this faster than a standard charging handle. There is also nothing to get your hands on for malfunction drills like a bolt over ride. Just how well does it work when your hands and rifle get slick with sweat, rain or blood? The latch on the standard AR works for a reason.

    If the charging handle “poking” you in the chest is an issue, something is wrong with the way you are slinging your rifle. It should be hitting you somewhere in the chest rig, not actually hitting you in the chest.

    I agree that the standard charging handle that comes on most AR’s leaves a little to be desired. Specifically, the size of the latch. The best one you can get to mitigate that issue is the BCM Gunfighter Mod 4. It is the medium latch.

    If someone is running an AR left handed, the one I recommend is the BCM Ambi charging handle. If the forward assist is getting in the way, it is a training issue. My son uses an AR left handed and uses that charging handle.

    In my career as an Infantryman and as an instructor, I have seen one charging handle bent. I am not saying it can’t happen, but the odds are slim.

    If getting a cheek weld is an issue, look for the B5 Systems SOPMD stock. It is a copy of the LMT SOPMOD but cost a hell of lot less. It is the stock that I use.

    FILO
    Signal out, can you identify.
    Je ne regrette rien...
    Klagt Nicht, Kämpft

    #51895
    Profile photo of Ralph Kramden
    HiDesertRat
    Participant

    “In my career as an Infantryman and as an instructor, I have seen one charging handle bent. I am not saying it can’t happen, but the odds are slim.”

    Last Novembers’ CRS/Spokane someone had issues with functionality and stoppages. Chris diagnosed the problem, bent charging handle, showing us all the problem. Someone had an extra, swapped out, class resumed. Believe it was a frankengun.

    #51898
    Profile photo of Jamison
    Jamison
    Participant

    I like the bcm medium latch like Top does. I’ve honestly never had a huge problem with the stock latch, and I can run a stock ambi. Could your cheek weld be a training issue? I still run the rifle with my nose right up to the latch. I notice people who don’t lean into the rifle have trouble with their sight picture. Well, that’s been my experience with the people who I’ve coached, trained, whatever. Also, I’ve never had any real issue with charging handle catching on anything, it’s a pretty good design to be honest.

    Admit nothing. Deny everything. Make counter-accusations.

    Nulla fatere. Nega omnia. Accusatis calumniatorem. Demanda probationem.

    #51903
    Profile photo of First Sergeant
    First Sergeant
    Moderator

    “In my career as an Infantryman and as an instructor, I have seen one charging handle bent. I am not saying it can’t happen, but the odds are slim.”

    Last Novembers’ CRS/Spokane someone had issues with functionality and stoppages. Chris diagnosed the problem, bent charging handle, showing us all the problem. Someone had an extra, swapped out, class resumed. Believe it was a frankengun.

    Again, not saying it can’t happen, but the odds are slim.

    I ran the standard issue charging handle for years, never had a problem. Then we really started to learn about how to best run the rifle, maintain firing grip, use the support hand to run the charging handle. That’s where BCM comes in. They saw a need and addressed it. A real need, not some made up one.

    The medium latch is perfect for all conditions. You can get your hands on it and pull it straight back. It doesn’t bind like the standard issue one does when you run it one handed. It really makes a difference during cold weather. I am talking about snow up to your ass, so cold that you have to wear real cold weather gloves or trigger finger mittens. Can anybody tell me why the trigger guard on standard AR’s is hinged?

    I like the bcm medium latch like Top does. I’ve honestly never had a huge problem with the stock latch, and I can run a stock ambi. Could your cheek weld be a training issue? I still run the rifle with my nose right up to the latch. I notice people who don’t lean into the rifle have trouble with their sight picture. Well, that’s been my experience with the people who I’ve coached, trained, whatever. Also, I’ve never had any real issue with charging handle catching on anything, it’s a pretty good design to be honest.

    I teach putting your nose to the charging handle. It is the only way you know you are getting the same cheek weld every time.

    FILO
    Signal out, can you identify.
    Je ne regrette rien...
    Klagt Nicht, Kämpft

    #51904
    Profile photo of RonW
    farmer
    Participant

    1st Sargeant, hinged so you can fight with gloves.

    You carried tools to release pin, or left base with it unhinged?

    RonW

    #51906
    Profile photo of First Sergeant
    First Sergeant
    Moderator

    1st Sargeant, hinged so you can fight with gloves.

    You carried tools to release pin, or left base with it unhinged?

    Bingo. Once cold weather set in, you folded it back and it stayed back.

    FILO
    Signal out, can you identify.
    Je ne regrette rien...
    Klagt Nicht, Kämpft

    #51909
    Profile photo of Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Moderator

    1st Sargeant, hinged so you can fight with gloves.

    Bingo. Once cold weather set in, you folded it back and it stayed back.

    Fortunately few here (except maybe Bergmann) will need the extreme version of this, over-mittens worn over gloves!

    Sometimes it’s colder than even glove weather (like above the Arctic Circle).

    #51912
    Profile photo of Ralph Kramden
    HiDesertRat
    Participant

    @ First Sargeant,

    Just relaying what I saw, whether its a once in a lifetime issue or not, Murphy makes an unscheduled appearance. I run a mid size BCM handle also, it works. Frankenguns not so much. At Idaho past summer, someone had a DIY rifle, “to specs”, wouldn’t accept the UTM bolt for FoF. Lent him my spare rifle. I believe he saw the light about such issues. We all hope to learn by our mistakes, preferably while training.

    #51914
    Profile photo of Rhino11
    rhino11
    Participant

    I wish you would have contacted me before you bought this charging handle.

    I first read about it about a year ago. Notice nothing has been said about it anywhere on this forum. There is a reason for that. It is a solution in search of a problem.

    I would not recommend anyone using this. I can break this faster than a standard charging handle. There is also nothing to get your hands on for malfunction drills like a bolt over ride. Just how well does it work when your hands and rifle get slick with sweat, rain or blood? The latch on the standard AR works for a reason.

    If the charging handle “poking” you in the chest is an issue, something is wrong with the way you are slinging your rifle. It should be hitting you somewhere in the chest rig, not actually hitting you in the chest.

    Huh. So if it hasn’t been written about and blessed on this forum, it cannot be worthwhile? Really? How much time have you actually spent running this setup? Did you run immediate action drills? My wife, with significant arthritis in her hands, finds it easier to use than the BCM ambi handle she used to run. She has not run it covered in blood, yet.

    I have not broke a HABU yet, but I have a standard charging handle. I have broken many of the tiny roll pins which hold the latch in place, but that does not lock up the rifle. The last ‘hard broke’ charging handle I can recall was during CTT at MVT. It was an aftermarket handle bent during immediate action drills, and the guy ended up using a loaner for the rest of the class.

    Some of us live with and handle our rifles every day, not just when all kitted up for training. It is an unusual day around the ranch when I don’t ‘sling up,’ a couple times if only because it frees my hands to carry things, dig keys out of my pocket and such. After 45+ years of experience with AR’s, I am pretty sure I know how to sling up, with or without a chest rig, but I am always trying to learn a better way.

    #51917
    Profile photo of Hello Kitty (Craig)
    hellokitty
    Participant

    I have not used that product. However, I can just look at it and know that you don’t have enough real estate on it to clear a double feed that is really jammed in there. And forget about a bolt over ride clearance, no gonna hoppin. So that right there makes it a NO GO.

    CTT 1502, NODF 1502, CP 1503, RC 002- Rifleman, FoF x 2, Run and Gun, RS/CTT, CLC, CQBC, Heat 1

    Craig S.

    #51924
    Profile photo of Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Moderator

    Huh. So if it hasn’t been written about and blessed on this forum, it cannot be worthwhile? Really?

    No, but the majority of problems people have could be avoided by using Forum knowledge.

    We have SME’s here on the Forum that provide informed opinions on a variety of topics.

    First Sergeant provided his opinion based on a professional military career using weapons in combat.

    Ultimately it is your decision.

    Beware of emotional responses to opinions you disagree with. ;-)

    #51925
    Profile photo of Max Velocity
    Max
    Keymaster

    Checked out the link and photos. Instantly banned from classes.

    :yahoo:

    #51926
    Profile photo of Hello Kitty (Craig)
    hellokitty
    Participant

    This charging handle reminds me of the infamous Accu-wedge.

    https://www.brownells.com/rifle-parts/receiver-parts/receiver-hardware/accu-wedges/ar-15-m16-accu-wedge-prod16662.aspx

    CTT 1502, NODF 1502, CP 1503, RC 002- Rifleman, FoF x 2, Run and Gun, RS/CTT, CLC, CQBC, Heat 1

    Craig S.

    #51928
    Profile photo of Max Velocity
    Max
    Keymaster

    The habu appears to make racking the charging handle a little like racking a pistol slide. Am I wrong? You have no hooks, just that solid cheek weld thing to grab hold of? How the crap to do immediate / remedial action drills? And what is the deal with cheek weld? What are these difficulties that I have never experienced?

    I still have a standard charging handle. No complaints.

    #51954
    Profile photo of First Sergeant
    First Sergeant
    Moderator

    I wish you would have contacted me before you bought this charging handle.

    I first read about it about a year ago. Notice nothing has been said about it anywhere on this forum. There is a reason for that. It is a solution in search of a problem.

    I would not recommend anyone using this. I can break this faster than a standard charging handle. There is also nothing to get your hands on for malfunction drills like a bolt over ride. Just how well does it work when your hands and rifle get slick with sweat, rain or blood? The latch on the standard AR works for a reason.

    If the charging handle “poking” you in the chest is an issue, something is wrong with the way you are slinging your rifle. It should be hitting you somewhere in the chest rig, not actually hitting you in the chest.

    Huh. So if it hasn’t been written about and blessed on this forum, it cannot be worthwhile? Really? How much time have you actually spent running this setup? Did you run immediate action drills? My wife, with significant arthritis in her hands, finds it easier to use than the BCM ambi handle she used to run. She has not run it covered in blood, yet.

    I have not broke a HABU yet, but I have a standard charging handle. I have broken many of the tiny roll pins which hold the latch in place, but that does not lock up the rifle. The last ‘hard broke’ charging handle I can recall was during CTT at MVT. It was an aftermarket handle bent during immediate action drills, and the guy ended up using a loaner for the rest of the class.

    Some of us live with and handle our rifles every day, not just when all kitted up for training. It is an unusual day around the ranch when I don’t ‘sling up,’ a couple times if only because it frees my hands to carry things, dig keys out of my pocket and such. After 45+ years of experience with AR’s, I am pretty sure I know how to sling up, with or without a chest rig, but I am always trying to learn a better way.

    I never said this forum had to “bless” anything. My point was if I thought it was worthwhile for someone, I would have recommended it here.

    I don’t have to run it. Some people that I trust did and gave me the feedback on it.

    I also carry my rifle around my property, not just when I have kit on or when I am at class. I also know what it’s like to carry a rifle slung up with no body armor or chest rig. Years ago before chest rigs and body armor became a thing, we used LBE. We also made our own assault slings out of GP straps, 550 cord and 100mph tape.

    I have carried a rifle slung across my chest, across my back and strapped to my leg in some way, shape or form for my entire adult life. The one thing that I never had an issue with is the charging handle poking me in the chest or anywhere else.

    As for charging handles breaking, I said it could happen. Yes Murphy gets a vote. But it is not one of those things that happens very often.

    What I try to do is steer people in the right direction as far as rifles and everything that goes with them. I want people to have the best possible rifle in their hands in case they ever have to use it for real. Whether it’s against 2 legged animals or 4. Most of the accessories floating around for AR’s today is crap. They are gimmicks trying to separate you from your money.

    In the end it’s your choice.

    Good luck.

    FILO
    Signal out, can you identify.
    Je ne regrette rien...
    Klagt Nicht, Kämpft

    #52041
    Profile photo of A_A_Ron2guns
    A_A_Ron2guns
    Participant

    When you see something like that you should immediately question why there’s not one single military or law enforcement group that uses it and why you haven’t seen any reputable trainers endorsing it.

    That thing is the social equivalent of walking around with your dick hanging out the front of your pants.

    There are faster more efficient ways of getting yourself killed in a gunfight. Don’t go looking for more.

    You are what you do, when it counts. -The Masao

    Not the other Aaron's in this industry!

    #52060
    Profile photo of Wes
    wesmc
    Participant

    That thing is the social equivalent of walking around with your dick hanging out the front of your pants.

    :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo:

    C2G Feb 2015, CTT March 2016, CQB June 2018

    #52431
    Profile photo of Rhino11
    rhino11
    Participant

    That thing is the social equivalent of walking around with your dick hanging out the front of your pants.

    :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo:

    Below is a link to a short youtube video from an acknowledged SME who actually has hands on experience. Interestingly, he anticipates virtually all our SME concerns, other than Ron2guns concern about walking around with his dick out. If you are wondering about his credentials, Google: Steve Reichert.
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=4aX4mn0h5Rk%3Frel%3D0

    #52432
    Profile photo of Hello Kitty (Craig)
    hellokitty
    Participant

    Wow, really dude.

    CTT 1502, NODF 1502, CP 1503, RC 002- Rifleman, FoF x 2, Run and Gun, RS/CTT, CLC, CQBC, Heat 1

    Craig S.

    #52436
    Profile photo of Max Velocity
    Max
    Keymaster

    Seriously? On my Sunday off? If you don’t consider MVT ‘SME’ enough then I suggest you fly Recheirt out to Idaho for your ‘habu-centric’ flat range classes.

    Yes, you made me watch the video. Says he is not paid but what is his connection to Falcon 37? Are we still doing this? Apparently when this came out a loy of big names such as Dakota Meyer were oart of it, but they all faded out.

    If you had paid attention at CRS/ CTT you would note that we do not teach mortaring of the weapon. And what he was doing would not fix an actual stuck case, it only worked on a functioning bolt.

    For our actual stuck case drill, and for bolt override, this habu would simply not work.

    Also, there is no need for an additional device on an AR for a ‘better cheek weld’ – if in doubt go nose to charging handle.

    I cannot believe we are still doing this. This is pride bassed, pure and simple. If it goes on, I will delete the thread, as below MVT forum standards.

    And HABU is banned at all MVT classes. Lucky I am not doing Idaho in May, right?

    #52546
    Profile photo of A_A_Ron2guns
    A_A_Ron2guns
    Participant

    A YouTube video? Ok there’s videos of Larry Vickers selling cooking oil and Travis Haley saying that salt can rehydrate you. Both are amazing shooters and I listen to them. Same with Steve here but holy fuck it doesn’t take a genius to see that there are issues that a sunny day on a flat range for a promotional video might not address.

    I’ll even come to the VTC and demo it. Max can film it.

    You are what you do, when it counts. -The Masao

    Not the other Aaron's in this industry!

    #52551
    Profile photo of Max Velocity
    Max
    Keymaster

    I will film it only if you dress as Coco the Clown for the demo.

    #52558
    Profile photo of A_A_Ron2guns
    A_A_Ron2guns
    Participant

    Is it bad I don’t know who that is?

    You are what you do, when it counts. -The Masao

    Not the other Aaron's in this industry!

    #52559
    Profile photo of Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Moderator

    Coco the Clown, arguably the most famous clown in the UK.

    Clown identification courtesy of MVT S2! ;-)

    #52560
    Profile photo of Max Velocity
    Max
    Keymaster

    Nicolai Poliakoff OBE was the creator of Coco the Clown, arguably the most famous clown in the UK during the middle decades of the 20th century.

    #52561
    Profile photo of Max Velocity
    Max
    Keymaster

    S2 beat me to it, but the photo link won’t show from my phone.

    #52562
    Profile photo of Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Joe (G.W.N.S.)
    Moderator

    Here

    Note: Hair is in deployed state due to being surprised!

    Attachments:
    You must be logged in to view attached files.
    #52612
    Profile photo of A_A_Ron2guns
    A_A_Ron2guns
    Participant

    See I grew up with Bozo and Pennywise

    You are what you do, when it counts. -The Masao

    Not the other Aaron's in this industry!

    #52748
    Profile photo of Trailman
    trailman
    Participant

    Who all makes an ambidextrous handle besides BCM. I’m thinking of my kid who is left handed but the wings look pretty big on that thing.

    CRM, CTT 1501, CP11/15, CTT5/16, FoF, DCH, CLC Opfor, Team Minion

    Just remember, Anne Frank was a criminal because the government made her one and she died because she broke the law.

Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 46 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.