Blackhawk’s AR-15 Offset Safety Selector: Don’t Be All Thumbs

If you’re right-handed, operating the safety lever on an AR-15 is a pain in the butt.

If you’re left-handed (using a standard AR-15), operating the safety lever on an AR-15 is a pain in the butt.

If you’re either right or left-handed, operating the safety lever on an AR-15 is a pain in the butt.

If you’re right-handed, you really have to alter your grip to work the lever with your thumb. Or you can work it with your left hand. Or you can phone a friend. If you’re left-handed, things get really interesting. You can de-joint your thumb and reach around the back of the grip. Maybe.

Now that topic is settled, let’s look at potential solutions.

  • You could try a self-imposed “assault weapon” ban. Be sure to email Dianne “Vengeful Hissing Cockroach” Feinstein. It will make her day.
  • You could duct tape a spent .223 cartridge onto the selector to provide more leverage. And slather the whole mess with WD-40 to slick up the action. You can fix anything with duct tape and WD-40 right?
  • You could avoid the problem altogether and switch to a double-barrel shotgun. Hey, if it’s good enough for Uncle Joe…
  • Or, you could try the new Blackhawk! AR-15 Safety Selector.

The last options brings us to the next step in the custom Blackhawk! AR-15 project.

Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector

Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector

Blackhawk’s AR-15 Offset Safety Selector is one of the nifty AR-15 accessories introduced at the 2013 SHOT Show and they are now shipping. It’s a drop-in part that only requires a screwdriver to install.

It works well for two reasons:

  1. The lever is offset 45 degrees so the range of motion is altered in a more favorable way.
  2. The whole lever is not as flat to the receiver as the standard safety lever, so it’s easier to manipulate.

Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Safety Selector Installation

Installation is easy. Just follow these steps:

Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector The Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector kit is pretty straightforward. It consists of the new selector lever and the package card with instructions on the back. If you finish this upgrade with parts left over, please step away from the margarita…
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector remove upper Go ahead and remove the upper from the lower by pushing the front and rear receiver pins from left to right.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector loosen grip OK, here is one of two steps where you get to use actual tools! You want to loosen, not remove, the hand grip.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector selector detent spring Here’s why you want to just loosen it. See that little spring peeking out between the grip and the receiver? You want to take some pressure off that as it is the detent spring for the selector lever. You know this is a serious gunsmithing project when we’re using words like “detent.”
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector remove selector If you loosen the grip enough, you’ll be able to pull the existing selector lever out. See that little detent pin? That’s what was holding it in place. Of course you can remove the grip entirely, but then that spring tends to launch into low earth orbit, facilitating a call to Brownells to order a new one. This will slow down your installation considerably.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector remove selector (1) Just lift the existing selector lever out from the left side of the receiver.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector installation This is the BEST PART! Remember when I said this was a drop-in upgrade? Here’s where you literally drop in the new Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector lever.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector installation detent pin You may need to push the detent pin down a bit with a small screwdriver or your favorite pocket knife to seat the new selector lever.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector tighten grip Here’s part two that requires intimate knowledge of tools. Tighten that hand grip back up. Not too much though as over-tightening could interfere with operation of the selector lever. Remember that the grip houses the detent spring. If you crush it, things may not work too well.
Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Selector (1) Voila! Take a break. Tell your significant other that you just completed a delicate and complicated machining project.

How it works

While moving a standard safety lever from SAFE to FIRE is fairly easy for righties, requiring a downward sweep of the thumb, the Blackhawk! AR-15 Offset Safety Selector makes it a bit easier. To move to fire, the offset lever moves from about a 1:30 to a 4:30 position. Your thumb does not have to stretch to push the lever all the way to 6:00.

Moving back to safe is even better. The “taller” lever and offset allow you to use the top of your thumb to move the selector back to SAFE.

The benefits apply to lefties as well. Your index / trigger finger can easily sweep the selector to FIRE and you can use the top of your trigger finger to move it back to SAFE.

All in all, a nifty little upgrade.

Half-Cocked: The Ironic Racism of Gun Control

The Ironic Racism of Gun Control

It’s Time To Stop ‘Thinking’ About Gun Control

Gun Control in the mainstream mediaIt’s time to stop thinking. About what might happen with or without new gun control measures.

The 24 hours news digital sphincter spasm continues to slather us all with lots and lots of thoughtless thinking and careless conjecture. Think what might happen if… I think… Most Americans think… I think I’ll have another beer… What is the NRA thinking… The United Nations thinks… I think Dancing with the Stars is on tonight… Most of our representatives in Washington think… No wait, I think we ought to scratch that last one. Most of our representatives do not think much past the next “So You Think You Can Smile!” audition.

Why are we still thinking about things?

I think there’s no place for guns in schools!

  • We know that Utah allows guns in schools.
  • We know that Utah is still waiting on its first mass school shooting.
  • We know that over 200 colleges and universities already allow lawful concealed carry on campus.
  • We know that none of those institutions have suffered catastrophic attacks like the ones in Newtown, Columbine, or Virginia Tech.
  • We know that all mass shooting incidents in the past 50 years, except one, have happened in areas where guns are not allowed.

I think it’s a bad idea to arm teachers!

  • We know we don’t want to force all teachers to be armed. We simply want those who choose to defend themselves and their students not to lose that fundamental right when they enter school property.
  • We know that Israel has had some percentage of armed teachers since 1974.
  • We know that most Israeli schools have armed security.
  • We know that is has kept their students safer in perhaps one of the most dangerous neighborhoods on planet earth.
  • We know that attacks on Israeli schools have been attempted by trained terrorists, not cowards that almost always end their own life as soon as they are challenged.
  • We know that challenging these cowards immediately almost always stops them immediately.

I think we shouldn’t have to live in a world where people have to have guns.

  • We know that we do in fact live in a world like that.
  • We know that there are sick and evil people out there.
  • We know because we hear about them on the news every single day.
  • We know they continue to do evil things regardless of laws.
  • We know that the very definition of “criminal” is one who breaks laws.
  • We know that burying our heads in the sand and hoping things will be better because they should be will not save one single life.

I think that some sort of gun ban is a good idea.

  • We know the last one didn’t lower crime at all.
  • We know that crime didn’t increase when it expired.
  • We know that there is not one example of gun control policy lowering violent crime.
  • We know that the most recent countries to implement drastic gun control have suffered serious increases in violent crime.
  • We know that women are 2 times more likely to be raped in the UK than in the US.
  • We know that women in Australia are 3 times more likely to be raped than women in the US.
  • We know that total murders in the UK have increased since the gun ban took effect in January 1997.
  • We know that in only 1 year have there been fewer murders in the UK after the handgun ban than before the handgun ban.
  • We know that the UK has a violent crime rate 3.5 times greater than that of the US.
  • We know that folks in the UK are having serious discussion about banning kitchen knives because the guns bans have not reduced crime.
  • We know that banning kitchen knives will make English food even worse.
  • We know that one definition of insanity is trying the same thing over and over again, but hoping for a different result.

I think magazines ought to be limited to 5 rounds.

  • We know that law enforcement officers, military personnel, and citizen survivors of gunfights have found that hyped-up bad guys don’t necessarily feel compelled to stop doing what they’re doing after 5 shots have been fired towards them.
  • We know bad guys doing bad things don’t travel alone.
  • We know more and more bad guys are wearing body armor to protect themselves against unarmed or lightly armed victims.
  • I know that if my home is invaded in the middle of the night that I will want a 2,530,371 round magazine handy. And a couple of spares.
  • We know that our soldiers have complained that actual Assault Rifles don’t have enough power to reliably stop enemy combatants.
  • We know that limiting magazines to some arbitrary capacity based on perceived need is about the stupidest suggestion ever.

I think we need to address gun violence!

  • We know we need to address violence. Not gun violence. Violence.
  • We know we are not somehow better off or morally superior if we are killed with a knife, bat, or fist as compared to a gun.
  • We know we are equally dead no matter what the cause.
  • We know that the term “gun violence” is a deliberate attempt to misrepresent and mislead from the very real, and hard to solve, issues of societal evil.
  • We know that violence is a difficult thing to solve so people tend to want to take shortcuts in order to consider things “fixed.”

I think you’re crazy if you think more guns is the answer to violence!

  • We know that record numbers of Americans are buying guns for protection.
  • We know that there are almost 300 million guns in the United States.
  • We know that violent crime, measured by the FBI as incidents per 100,000 people, has fallen 50% in the past 20 years.
  • We know that murder, measured by the FBI as incidents per 100,000 people, has fallen 54% over the past 20 years.
  • We know that these massive and steady decreases in crime have happened while more and more Americans are buying guns.
  • We know that simply blaming guns is deliberate shirking from the harder problem of addressing the real causes of crime.

I don’t think anyone needs a high-powered Assault Weapon!

  • We know that there is no such thing as an assault weapon.
  • We know that if you ask an “assault weapon ban” proponent what an “assault weapon” is, that they will not be able to tell you.
  • We know, again according to the FBI, that many times more murders are committed with simple beatings than rifles of any kind.
  • We know that banning mythical “assault weapons” will not stop murders by beating.
  • We know that banning mythical “assault weapons” will not save lives. The largest mass murders ever had nothing to do with mythical “assault weapons.” People do bad things with or without mythical “assault weapons.”

I think armed citizens are going to act like vigilantes and cause even more harm!

  • We know that lawfully armed citizens are among the most law-abiding groups of people measurable.
  • We know that the crime rate for concealed carry permit holders is 14 times less than that of the general population.
  • We know that lawfully armed citizens are 5 times less likely to commit a violent crime than the average citizen.

I think I have an irrational fear of guns and want a simple and immediate fix to the problems of violence.

  • We know. We want to continue to reduce violence also.
  • We know there is no simple fix.
  • We know that we don’t fear guns. They’re just tools that protect someone from crime and/or violence between 1 and 2.5 million times per year – just in the US.
  • We know that we kind of like the direction of the crime trend over the past 20 years and want to continue that. We just want to be smart about how we do it.

It’s time to stop thinking about what might happen.

It’s time to know what does happen. 

P.S. I know I’m going to vomit if I hear one more talking head tell me what they think without considering what we already know.

Half-Cocked: Obama Announces New Gun Control Plan In Hometown Chicago

Half-Cocked: Obama Announces New Gun Control Plan In Hometown Of Chicago

Half-Cocked: California Legal Assault Rifles…

Half-Cocked: California Legal Assault Rifle

Half-Cocked: AR-15 vs. AK-47

AR-15 vs AK-47 debate settled

Who's the better man?

The Browning BAR Booger Picker Pocket

WWI_Uniform_BAR_cup_pocket

Edwin the WWI Stud Muffin

Meet Edwin. He’s a stud muffin – mainly because he walks around dressed in full WWI battle regalia.

All his buddies in the U.S. Army 79th Infantry Division think he’s a total bro because he’s a new BAR man. BAR as in Browning Automatic Rifle that is.

Edwin has come to war equipped with a cup, as all good privates should. Mainly so the private can protect his privates. It’s not like you think, however, as Edwin’s cup, or pocket, protects him in an entirely different way. Offensively, not defensively.

Early BAR men were issued an automatic rifleman’s belt with a special metal “cup” between the BAR magazine pouches and pistol magazine pouch. This cup was intended to support the BAR’s stock as the shooter fired from the hip in a concept called “walking fire.”

The idea behind this was to make an automatic weapon portable enough to accompany advancing troops. The Vickers Machine Gun was a tad too bulky and heavy for this use, even by a hunk like Edwin, and the Chauchat Machine Rifle, which was portable, was entirely French in terms of reliability and performance. Enough said.

Enter the Browning Automatic Rifle. Awfully heavy to shoulder fire under control while dashing across the shell-cratered battlefields of France, designers developed the ‘walking fire‘ concept. The stock was snugged in to a pocket or cup on the shooters ammo belt, thereby supporting some of the weight of the rifle and allowing a semblance of controlled hip firing. Historians are unclear as to whether elite troops like the German salsa-dancing belt buckle guard were specifically recruited. Among other problems with the ‘walking fire’ concept was that the very first BAR’s featured a top mounted ejection port. Of course, only those who minded brass being ejected straight into their face while attacking the huns considered the ejection system a problem.

The original Browning Automatic Rifle with top ejection port (Browning Museum, Ogden, UT)

The original Browning Automatic Rifle with top ejection port (Browning Museum, Ogden, UT)

Admit it. We all have been known todig for gold now and then, but very few of us would voluntarily choose to cleanse our nasal passages with burning hot .30-06 brass at a rate of 500 to 650 rounds per minute. Semi-automatic maybe, but no way would I give up my favorite nose-clearing pinkie finger in favor of steaming brass ejecta.

As you can imagine, early testers, even those with serious allergies, complained. Something had to be done. So Mr. Browning went back to the drawing board and relocated the ejection port to the side of the BAR’s receiver. Burning booger problem solved.

And now you know the real story behind development of the BAR’s side mounted ejection system.

These Are A Few of My Favorite Things…

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

Guns For Sale! Call 1-900-LUV-BATF

Guns For Sale - Operation Fast and Furious

Operation Fast and Furious Marketing

Spotted near Sierra Vista, AZ… Any chance this is related to Operation Fast and Furious?

 

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Size Matters - A10 Warthog Gatling Gun

Size Matters - A10 Warthog Gatling Gun

Shown: A-10 ‘Warthog’ 30mm, 7 barrel Gatling Gun.

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