I made a few changes to my work horse carbine lately and I am pleased with the results. I do not add new gimmicks to my guns very often. It has to be something pretty special for me to take it serious. Because of this attitude I am not big on a lot of Magpul products and that is why you very rarely see me review or buy anything from them that is not a mag or rear stock that does more then offer up a different look. Two things I bought recently are products I feel truly upgraded the performance of my carbine and myself or gave me more flexibility.
The first thing is the BCM Gunfighter MOD O grip. For a long time I stayed away from trying the new grips with the more vertical grip angles. To me, the leverage you get from the standard AR15/M16 grip made holding the gun and supporting its weight with one hand easier. But, I saw immediately the benefit of the more vertical grip giving a straighter rearward pull of the trigger. My long range bolt guns stocks all have a palm swelled pistol grip that is close to vertical so I am use to the better trigger control this gives. The angle also gives you an ability to really tuck the gun in and control it when working it fast. As a side perk, it is also more comfy when the gun is slung and you have your hand on the grip all day. It does not put much strain on your wrist from being turned at a more sever angle when you have the gun pointed at the dirt. It is really hard to explain until you try it yourself.
The storage compartment is pretty snazzy as well. It is as huge as your ex wife’s mouth. This is a substantial amount of storage room with no lousy divider in there either. I hate it when the company making the thin does not make it open enough to let me decided what I want in there. Not just two batteries or a bolt pin etc. It is sealed off and opens by depressing tabs on each side and its not likely to fall off like some other types.
The grip is hard plastic and tough with a texture for gripping. It also comes with a front section that tabs into place as you instal the grip that eliminates the little ouchy some people seem to think is un bearable from the rear of the trigger guard. It comes in two sizes for his or her pleasure. The MOD O does not have the thicker curved up back strap as the other model. I did not get that one because I had the feeling of those grips. I like the A1 and A2 grips just fine and the Tango Down was about the only other aftermarket grip i felt was worth it, so I have no use for the other model. I know it fits others hands better so , you can get it wit that feature if its something you need on your grip.
The other item is the nifty Tactical Link, Z-360 Sling Mount, GEN 2.
I like that mounting position for a sling. I have wanted to have this option for a while but a few things stopped me. One is, I do not want to break the Colt factory castle nut stacking. It is deep, well done and strong and I have no desire to mess with it just like i have no desire to mess with the factory gas system and I can not get everything back just right when I do. The next reason is other mounts seem to get in the way of my hand , and that really bugs me. Last, I wanted to me able to take it off fast, put it on without any special tools and I wanted it to not add a lot of weight.
The new mount meets all those needs for me. It is plastic unlike the Gen 1 model, but the QD point and screws have a stainless steel bushing inside that gives it all the support you need. It screws in together and lacks in tight. It does not add any real weight to the rear of the gun and it does nto run the risk of narking any special coating you have on the rifle. Most important is, it does not let the sling get in the way of my hand.
Below, you can see the SS socket for the sling swivel.
This sling mount allows mounting the sling at the rear and lets me swap to using the traditional points, the rear rail adn rear receiver points, or to use a two point VCAS sling as a one point with well thought out sling choices, all using the same sling. I really like being able to have 3-4 sling options quickly depending on my needs.
You can not completely collapse the M4 stock using the Tack link sling mount, but I do not care. I do not have any need to put the stock into the first position anyway. So, to me it is a non issue considering what you get with the thing.
Like all QD sling mounts, it is fast and easy to use. The mount gives a 360 degree swivel turn , so it is easy to go from strong side to alternate killing side fast and smoothly without the sling hanging up or being stopped from a stop. It is very fast and I am very , very fond of it. I have tried to pull the QD swivel out of the slot to see if it will fail but failed. I wanted to make sure the bushing would not pull out of the plastic, so I grabbed the sling and pulled on it with all I am worth while standing on the gun and pulling up. It stayed put. That is good enough for me.
Now, these are not “must have” and you can do fine without them. People used the A2 grip just fine for a long time. and the traditional sling mounting points. But, they do allow greater flexibility. If you can exploit that extra flexibility and need it, then these are great products. If you just want to “upgrade” your gun just to make it cooler, its probably best if you spend the money on the hard to find ammo and use it to practice with. That will help you decide just waht upgrades you really need and can take advantage of so you do not have to waste money trying new parts you may not like.