Note: I thought I published this some time back, now I found it today in the drafts folder, so here it is.
I have this opportunity to compare 5 different AR triggers, so I would be a fool not to write about it.
- Standard AR15 Trigger
- Geissele SSA
- Larue Tactical MBT
- LMT 2 Stage
- KAC 2 Stage
Before I try them all side by side, I’d guess that the standard trigger will be the heaviest, the MBT the lightest, and the SSA my favorite of them. Of the two stage triggers I have the most time behind the SSA. In the past I used to highly recommend the SSA, but Geissele has raised the price on them at least twice and the MBT can be had for under $100.
First up is a notched standard Colt fire control group. The notched hammers will not work with some of the .22 conversions and most all of the pistol caliber uppers. You can find non-notched hammers in various brands of lower parts kits.
These standard triggers can vary drastically. Some have a smooth trigger pull and others are terrible and inconsistent. Most of them will become significantly better as you use it. But few people these days seem to want to spend the time to dry fire their firearm a few thousand times.
Using my trigger pull tester, I had the following results.
7.5 lbs, 6.75 lbs, 7 lbs.
On this trigger there is a noticeable amount of creep. The trigger can be pulled very slightly and will move before the shot breaks. But this distance is short, only noticeable if you are pulling the trigger very slowly.
The trigger reset is crisp, and the trigger will do what we really need. But there are nicer options.
Geissele triggers have a G marking visible on them.
The trigger pull tested measured in at 4.5 lbs, 4.25 lbs, and 4.5 lbs.
This two stage trigger requires about 2.75 pounds of weight to pull the first stage.
I never noticed before, but when I was just releasing the trigger until it resets, it feels like most of the weight is in the second stage.
The LMT 2 stage trigger has a straighter trigger bar than the others.
Trigger pull weights measured 4.75 lbs, 5.5 lbs, and 5.5lbs. The first stage was measuring about 4.5 pounds.
To me the transition from the first stage to the trigger breaking was crisper on this trigger than the SSA.
I didn’t test it, but this felt like a heavier hammer spring than the others.
The Larue MBT trigger can be identified by the recesses on each side of the trigger bar. This felt very light compared to the previous triggers.
All three trigger pulls clocked in at 3 pounds. If it were any lighter I wouldn’t want it on a fighting rifle. The whole weight of the trigger pull seemed like it was in the first stage. The MBT comes with a heavier spring to use as an option. I prefer to use this heavier spring as it makes the trigger feel more like a Geissele SSA. Also, on one of these triggers I found the reset was sluggish with the lighter spring. I have heard of other people having this issue, and using the heavier spring was the suggested solution. I have not tested the weight with the heavier spring.
Trigger pulls measured 4 lbs, 4 lbs, 5 lbs. Getting 5 on that third pull surprised me so I measured several more after that and for 4.5 lbs on each of those.
I’m not sure how to describe it, but it is a little clicker than the others. If you are riding the trigger(or rolling the link, what ever you wanna call it), the reset is very noticeable and firm.
Compared to the SSA, I would say this feel heavier, even though it isn’t.
I like this trigger, but running at about $320 dollars, I could have three MBTs with cash left over. I wouldn’t buy this trigger simply due to that high price. The trigger and hammer are coated with something, probably chrome.
For dollar value, the Larue MBT can not be beat. I am partial to the Geissele SSA, but that is because I have been using them longest and own several. I certainly wouldn’t replace any of the above if I was using them.
As of January 2020, the LMT 2 stage is $140, which is a good price. Larue MBT trigger line is $80. If I was going to upgrade the trigger in an AR15, I just don’t see how to justify the price of anything other than the MBT.