By Lars Dalseide | December 13 2012 16:22

New AR fore-ends work just as well Geissele Automatics' triggers

Geissele SMR Lead 354x200 If you haven't been following Shooting Illustrated's latest work, then you've probably missed Steve Adelmann's review of the Geissele Automatics’s Super Modular Rail. Here's a taste of what you've missed:

Geissele Automatics Super Modular Rails
Geissele Automatics now offers freefloat fore-ends for AR-pattern rifles that are every bit as superlative as the company's legendary triggers.

The AR aftermarket offers of a mind-boggling array of component options. Many of these add-ons do a great job of helping us transform the basic black rifle into an ergonomic, accurate and practical firearm. Unfortunately, more than a few shoddy components likewise proliferate the parts world, complicating the lives of shooters and gunsmiths alike. Freefloat tubes are a prime example, and a number of cheap and expensive models have caused me enough trouble that I routinely avoid them at all costs.

The good news is the freefloat tube market recently got another addition in the “good kit” category by way of the hard-working folks at Geissele Automatics. The company’s Super Modular Rail (SMR) models offer us free-floaters supreme comfort and performance through good ergonomics and rock-solid manufacturing. Make no mistake here; these are high-end freefloat tubes that deliver even higher-end performance.

All freefloat tubes in the SMR family are smooth on the sides and bottom, having continuous top rails that correctly continue the slot spacing of flat top upper receivers (not the case with all freefloat tube designs). Add-on rail kits allow the user to attach short- and medium-length rail sections wherever desired for ancillary equipment like lights, lasers, bipods and grips. Sans rails, the SMRs feel very good inSand MK2 Sliding Nut 3 hole hand, and thanks to their smooth, quadrant-shaped cross sections, they provide contours enabling excellent gripping with the support hand.

The MKI rail (MSRP $345 to $400) uses threaded steel inserts for rail section attachment. This is by far the easiest form of rail modularity, and unlike freefloat tubes with threads tapped directly into their extruded aluminum bodies, the MKI’s inserts will not strip out. The MKI’s side and bottom quadrants are rounded, which is both comfortable in hand and conducive to solid rail interface. The latter is enhanced by the undersides of the add-on rails, which are machined to match those rounded quadrants.

The MKII family (MSRP $270 to $295) uses threaded slide nuts to anchor the flat-bottomed add-on rail sections through pre-drilled holes in the freefloat tubes’ sides. Geissele eliminated the familiar problem of having to fish screws and loose backer nuts into position by machining channels into the MKIIs that accept the slide nuts. The result is a captive track that the makes positioning of the nuts fast and easy.

The MKI and MKII are currently available in 13- and 15-inch lengths, though shorter models may be available in the future. The HK416/MR556 models (MSRP $350 to $400) are available in 10.5- and 14.5-inch variants.

Get Shooting Illustrated's full look at Geissel Automatics Super Modular Rails.

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