Clearing up compliance confusion: 922(r)

One of the regulations people seem most confused about is the regulation concerning the number of foreign-made parts allowed on a semi-auto rifle. Most people wrongly assume a certain number of US parts are required.

The truth is, no more than 10 foreign-made parts from a list of specific parts are allowed.

To help our customers who are trying to figure out what they can legally install on their AK, vz.58, Galil, G3, and other imported-parts rifles, we have published a 922(r) compliance guide.

Click here for more detailed information on this confusing regulation.


Gear I Use: MTH Magazine Carrier

MTHWMThe MTH Horizontal Magazine Carrier is one of those products that everyone who owns an AR-15 should have.

The MTH simply holds a magazine horizontally under the receiver of the rifle. It inserts into the magazine well and keeps dust from entering the action. To load the rifle, simply press the magazine release, rotate the magazine 90 degrees, and insert the magazine.

The MTH keeps one magazine always on the rifle, but not loaded in the rifle. Your rifle can sit next to your bed, in your truck, boat, airplane, or patrol car unloaded but with an attached magazine that can be inserted in a split second. It makes it visually clear that no magazine is inserted, yet prevents the magazine from being separated from the rifle. I would not think about being without mine.

Gear I Use: PEC Adjustable Ejection Port Cover

The second small part that I use on almost every rifle I own is the PEC. The PEC is probably our most overlooked and under appreciated product.

Over the years, the IDF purchased many M16 rifles from the US government. They purchased others new from Colt. Many of these rifles were already worn out when they were sent to Israel. Others were in good shape and still others were new. These rifles were used hard and for many years. IDF soldiers do a lot of shooting in training, and they carry their rifles at all times, often in a dusty, sandy environment. Some were cut down to carbine length and still continue to be used. Over time, the aluminum of the upper receivers were worn by the steel ejection port cover detent until the ejection port cover no longer remained closed.
The only solution was to replace the uppers. FAB Defense came up with a better solution.
PEC Adjustable Ejection Port Cover
PECThe PEC Polymer Ejection Port Cover has an adjustable detent. A jeweler’s screwdriver can be used to adjust the tension. Increasing the tension causes the PEC to work on a worn-out upper receiver, negating the need to replace the whole upper receiver. If a particular upper is machined a bit tight, the tension can be reduced, preventing accelerated wear.

I like the PEC for the following reasons:
• It can be used to keep a worn upper in service.
• The PEC can be adjusted to the exact amount of tension you want – great for tighter uppers.
• It is made from polymer, so it does not rust. Steel ejection port covers are always the first part to show rust on an AR-15.
• They look good and can match your furniture in black, OD, or dark earth.
• The PEC works on my .50 Beowulf!

PEC TANI use PEC ejection port covers on my .50 Beowulf rifles with their oversized ejection port covers. It covers the ejection port, but does not overlap on the top. I run the detent up until it engages positively, and then drop a little epoxy behind it to keep the detent from backing down under the increased recoil (there is now less thread engagement, so it moves easier, otherwise).

The PEC can be installed without disassembly of the upper. Impossible? Not if you do it right, but there is a trick to doing it without damage. I will post instructions soon.

Gear I Use: TSA Sling Mount

I have covered the stocks, handguards, and grips that I personally use on my AR-15s. Next, I will mention two smaller parts that I use on almost every one of my rifles.

I am a fan of single-point slings. I also use two-point slings. Two-point slings are easy – every FAB Defense stock is designed with multiple sling mounting options. Handguards and rail systems are easy to mount slings to, either using the SLS in the QR sockets, or the SLA Picatinny sling mount.

TSAIf I have a GLR-16 stock, I can attach a single-point sling to the attachment point at the front of the stock. The more elegant solution, though, is the TSA single-point sling adapter. The TSA is a simple replacement for the end plate on an M4 or AR-15 carbine. The TSA has a narrow slot on either side to accept a web sling or certain types of hooks. I prefer the TSA to other end-plate sling adapters for the following reasons:

• It is very low profile. It does not stick way out the sides and catch on things, nor do I bang my wrist against it when manipulating the weapon.
• It is made correctly of parkerized steel, so it can be staked correctly
• It is made to fit tightly on the buffer tube. Depending on who made the tube, I often have to slightly file the TSA for a perfect fit. This is important, as a fit that is even slightly loose will make it more likely that the stock and buffer tube can turn, causing the centering tabs to cut into the threads of the buffer tube.

Rather than attaching metal hooks directly to the TSA, I usually use a small loop of 550 cord and attach the hook to the 550 cord. This makes things more flexible so that hooks will lay nicely out of the way and it keeps the sling hooks quiet.

Gear I Use: AGR-43 Rubberized Pistol Grip

So if you read my last post, you know that when I first saw the AG-43 Pistol Grip, I was convinced I would hate it, until I grudgingly tried one, and then installed them on all of my ARs. Still, I was very vocal in expressing my dislike for any rubber-overmolded grip.

I had good reason for this. Rubber grips tend to cling to clothing or gear, getting tangled in slings, Dirt and sweat stick to them, making a slimy mess when they get wet, that can be hard to hold onto. Certain solvents deteriorate the rubber over time. Other solvents will make the rubber swell and sponge and fall apart in short order. I had no use for rubber-overmolded grips, and I had played with all of them enough to be sure of my opinion.
So when FAB Defense mentioned to me that they were considering making a rubber-overmolded grip, I knew it would be a good seller, because people buy rubber grips. I knew with equal certainty that I would never personally use it.

I guess I should have learned my lesson with the AG-43, because I now have an AGR-43 rubberized grip on my LMT home defense carbine, two .50 Beowulf carbines, and a Colt LE carbine.

AGR-43 2D TANThe AGR-43 retains all the advantages of the AG-43, but I like the front profile of the rubberized grip better. The rubber construction allows a very aggressive texture, without discomfort when shooting bare handed.

Most important is the type of rubber chosen for this grip. You will notice that the texture of the grip is different than any other rubber grips. This is because it is made from a rubber that can have an aggressive surface texture without coming apart from use. It also lacks the annoying stickiness of other rubber grips, and is designed to be impervious to all normal solvents and oils, and even many abnormal ones. Exposure to gun cleaners, parts cleaners, lubricants, and fuels does not damage the rubber that the AGR-43 grips are made from. They do not build up sweat and dirt and become slimy, either.

Like the polymer AG-43, the AGR-43 Rubberized Pistol Grip is designed to be the ideal shape for shooting, as well as manipulating and handling the rifle one-handed.

I had always said I would never use a rubber pistol grip. The AGR-43 proved me wrong.

Gear I Use: AG-43 IDF Pistol Grip

At the end of last year I began a series of posts about the Mako products that I use personally, and why. I covered buttstocks and handguards, and then we began a project to transition to a new website, which has consumed most of my time. The new website is up, and while it looks similar to the old one, function is much better. Keep watching, though, as the overall look and user interface will also be changing for the better.
So now we come to pistol grips. I started using A1 pistol grips on M16A1 rifles in basic training and then A2 grips on M16A4s and M4 Carbines. I was never too hot on the A2 grips, and felt they were a bit uncomfortable, but never really thought much about it either. When I was deployed once, I was given a popular aftermarket rubber pistol grip, the style with finger grooves. I put it on my rifle, and after a day, my wrist really hurt. I took it off and put the A2 grip back on. Later, I realized that the A2 grip was not the best grip for precision shooting, and put a better aftermarket grip on a sniper rifle that used an A2 grip.

AG-43 3DSo when I became aware of the FAB Defense products that Mako was importing, there were certain products that I thought were really great products, such as the SSR-25 Sniper Stock. Others I saw as good, solid useful products. The AG-43 pistol grip was not one of them. When I saw that grip, with its finger grooves, I remembered the rubber grip from another brand that I tried in Iraq and I wanted nothing to do with the AG-43 grip. I didn’t even plan to ever try one.

Then I began working for Mako, and felt that I needed to try each product so that I had a working knowledge of them. I grudgingly installed an AG-43 pistol grip on a rifle and prepared to hate it.

But I didn’t hate it. I actually liked it. So I shot the rifle with it installed and liked it even more. Then I did some training with it, and soon every AR rifle I had was sporting an AG-43 pistol grip.

Now anyone who knows me knows that no matter who I might work for, nothing goes on my rifles unless I have a reason to like it. When I tried the AG-43, I was not looking for reasons to like it, I was looking for reasons to dislike it. What I actually found was that this pistol grip works exceptionally well. Here is why:

• The AG-43 pistol grip is very simple. It does not have a bunch of features and interchangeable parts. It does not need them.
• The AG-43, designed as an issue grip to be used by both male and female IDF soldiers of every shape and size is designed to work well for everyone.
• The AG-43 works well for CQB fighting as well as for precision shooting. The angle and placement of the hand works well for both.
• The AG-43 is very comfortable for everyone I have seen who tried it.
• The AG-43 was not designed only for shooting. It as designed to give the shooter very good control with less fatigue when handling the rifle one-handed. IDF soldiers, when moving during a fight, hold their rifles with their shooting hand only. This leaves the support hand to performa other tasks, such as catching the soldier if he falls, or gaging the right distance from a corner. The rifle is also held with only one hand while reloading or clearing a malfunction, which often require violent manipulation of the rifle. A bystander or detainee may need to be dealt with, or objects moved, or climbed over or through. In fact, combat requires a lot of time spent controlling the weapon with only the firing hand. When the AGR-43 was designed, it was not designed only for shooting, or to look cool, it was designed to give the shooter the best control when shooting, and when holding the weapon with only the firing hand. It works.

What further sold me on the AG-43 was the fact that I can let someone use an AG-43 in a shooting course for a day, and at the end of the day, whatever cool aftermarket grip was on his rifle stays off and the AG-43 stays on. This isn’t people who are noncommittal about their grips – many of these people are sold on whatever brand they use and initially insist they will never change. Any grip works OK for an occasional range trip, but an intense training course or a few days of combat will prove what works.