Let’s be honest. Gun owners got the only Christmas present they really needed on November 9 when Hillary Clinton gave her concession speech. Donald Trump’s victory likely saves us from another two years of ammo shortages and, more importantly, another four years of “assault weapon” ban threats.
Still, AR-15s have been on my mind ever since the primaries. I started purchasing AR parts when the first election polls showed Trump losing by double-digits, and I went into full prepper mode in the days before the election.
Now my timetable is a bit less urgent, but I still have a hefty list of parts and accessories I need to buy (you just never know what Congress is going to do, amiright?). If you’ve been wondering what to include on your Christmas list, here are a few items from my list you might consider.
Seekins Precision AR ATC Muzzle Brake
Seekins designed the AR ATC Muzzle Brake to optimize both muzzle control and sound. Obviously, the brake doesn’t make your rifle quieter, but it isn’t as loud as other brakes on the market. Plus, it’s reported to do an excellent job controlling muzzle flip: All reviews I’ve read describe a significant decrease in muzzle rise without a significant increase in the noise level.
It’s so popular, in fact, that you might have trouble finding one in stock. A Seekins rep told me that the current lead time on these brakes is eight weeks from time of order. You might be able to find one in stock at a third-party dealer, but if you want it in time for Christmas, you’ll want to start looking now. MSRP: $89.
Midwest Industries Anti-Rotation G3 Handguard
Midwest Industries designed a super slick system that keeps their Anti-Rotation G3 Handguard from rotating during installation. Their custom torque plate locks the handguard in place and keeps it lined up with the upper receiver while the guard is being torqued down.
The guard is also super light. The 9.25-inch model weighs 7.3 oz with the barrel nut, and the 15-inch model only adds an extra two ounces, weighing in at 9.3 oz.
Midwest Industries includes a barrel nut and wrench with every purchase. You can also purchase one of their gas blocks in the same order for a reasonable $30. MSRP: $139.95-$219.95.
Daniel Defense 32-Round Magazine
Daniel Defense has always been a leader in the AR world, and the new 32-round magazine is no exception. The company claims to have created a magazine that holds 32 rounds of 5.56 or 300 Blackout while maintaining the same size as an industry-standard 30-round magazine.
How? I have no idea, and they don’t exactly give away their secrets on the DD website. I think it has something to do with carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer construction, which (I imagine) allows for thinner magazine walls and more internal space for the rounds. That’s just a guess, but either way, I want to get my hands on one. MSRP: $20.
Bushnell AR 4.5-18x40mm Dropzone 223 BDC
I’m always on the lookout for my next quality budget scope. If you think that’s an oxymoron, well, you may be right. But I think the AR 4.5-18x40mm Dropzone 223 BDC scope from Bushnell could provide a good balance between quality and cost.
At a reasonable $218 from Midsouth Shooters, this scope won’t break the bank. At the same time, it includes some nice features, including a BDC reticle, 18X maximum magnification, fully multi-coated optics, a side parallax focus, and a waterproof design. Plus, Bushnell is one of the biggest names in the firearms industry and provides excellent customer service. Not a bad deal, and definitely worth a shot on my next AR build.
MSRP: $323.45 ($218 at Midsouth Shooters)
Burris AR Tactical Quick Detach Mount
Speaking of big names, Burris has produced the AR Tactical Quick Detach Mount that’s ideal for AR-15 configurations. The mount extends the scope ring forward and up, which helps overcome the difficulties caused by the short stock of many AR-15s. The shape of the mount is also ideal for a red dot/magnifier combo. It costs just $56 at Midsouth Shooters.
Burris mills these mounts from a single piece of aluminum alloy, making it both strong and light. The quick-detach mechanism is also great if you’re concerned about scope failure or you just like to use your backup iron sights every once in a while. MSRP: $64 ($56 at Midsouth Shooters)