June, 25

Free Float Handguard AR 15: Upgrade Your Rifle with Enhanced Accuracy

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Free float handguard AR 15 – these are four words that every gun enthusiast should know about. A free-floating handguard can be a game-changer for an AR-15 rifle, as it offers several benefits over the traditional drop-in handguards. It is essential to understand what free floating means and how it affects the performance of your firearm.

If you're not familiar with this term, then you've come to the right place. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive overview of what exactly is a free float handguard for AR 15 rifles and how it can enhance your shooting experience. We'll discuss its features, advantages and explain why it has become popular among hunters and tactical shooters alike.

So whether you're looking to upgrade your current setup or just curious about firearms accessories—keep reading!

Free Float Handguard AR 15: The Ultimate Guide

When it comes to building or upgrading an AR-15, one of the most important decisions you'll make is choosing a handguard. The free float handguard has become increasingly popular over the years due to its many benefits. In this guide, we will provide you with everything you need to know about free float handguards for AR-15s.

What is a Free Float Handguard?

A free float handguard is a type of accessory that allows the attachment of multiple accessories such as lasers, flashlights, and bipods. It also provides protection for your hands from heat generated by firing rounds rapidly. Unlike traditional drop-in style handguards that are attached directly onto the barrel nut and delta ring assembly, free float handguards do not touch any part of the barrel or rifle.

The name "free-float" refers to how these types of rails do not touch any part on your gun other than where they attach at both ends (receiver end and barrel nut).

Why Choose a Free Float Handguard Over Other Types?

  1. Accuracy: One major benefit provided by using a free-float design on an AR-15’s rail system is improved accuracy because nothing touches nor interferes with your rifle's barrel which may affect accuracy.
  2. Customization: With more space available for attachments like optics or lights under different angles combined with low profile gas blocks makes it easier for customization.
  3. Heat Dissipation: A good quality aluminum rail can help dissipate heat away from critical parts during prolonged use or rapid fire mode
  4. Ergonomics & Comfort :Without needing additional tools changing in length adding ability grip accessories add-ons yield better handling experience making shooting more comfortable.

Types Of Materials Used in Making Free Float Handguards

Free-floating aluminum rails have been proven through time as durable enough material that won't easily wear down even after years of use. Other materials such as carbon fiber, polymer and wood are also used for making handguards.

Choosing the Right Length

Free float handguards come in various lengths, including rifle length, carbine length, and mid-length. To choose the right one for your AR-15 rifle or upper assembly build project will depend on what you intend to do with it.

For those who want a longer-range shooting experience without adding too much weight to their gun should go with a rifle-length free-float rail while shorter-length rails like carbine or midlength may be ideal for those looking more towards home defense situations where quick handling is key.

Installation of Free Float Handguard

Installation of any Free Floating Rail involves removing old parts from your gun before properly attaching the new rail system into place following instructions included by manufacturer. The process usually requires little prior knowledge but can get complicated if proper precautions are not taken during installation.

Maintenance & Cleaning Tips:

Maintaining your free float handguard is very important for reliability and safety reasons. It's essential that you regularly clean it before storing long term or using again after prolonged periods of inactivity because dirt buildup inside railed sections can cause misalignment directly affecting accuracy

When cleaning aluminum rails made up either 6061-T6 grade aluminium alloy (commonly used) just wiping them down thoroughly every so often using a soft cloth dampened with water should suffice; avoid using any solvents that could damage finish coatings types mentioned earlier like wood or polymer.


A free float handguard offers numerous benefits over traditional drop-in style handguards which makes them an excellent upgrade choice when building out an AR-15 platform . From improved accuracy to customization options under different angles combined low profile gas blocks provide better handling experiences while dissipating heat away from critical parts during rapid use mode all wrapped together offer optimal performance enhancing user experience leading in its class amongst other types available on market today.


What is a free float handguard for AR 15?

A free float handguard is an aftermarket accessory that replaces the standard factory forend on the AR-15 rifle. It’s designed to allow for better accuracy and handling by increasing stability and reducing barrel deflection. The key difference between a free float handguard and traditional handguards is that it doesn't come into contact with the barrel of the firearm, allowing complete independence of movement from any other part of the gun.

The main function of a free-float handguard system is to ensure improved accuracy by removing interference caused by pressure points on your rifle’s barrel from mounting systems such as sling studs or bipods. This type of installation allows shooters to attach accessories directly onto their rifles without negatively affecting their accuracy in any way.

A perfect fit should be achieved when choosing your preferred size, length, material construction (aluminum or carbon fiber), manufacturer brand preference amongst other factors based on personal preferences which must be taken into consideration before making any purchase decisions.

What are some benefits of using a Free Float Handguard over standard ones?

One major benefit provided by using Free Float Handguards over standard ones lies in how it affects firearm performance during shooting sessions. A good quality Free Float Hand-guard will offer more rigidity than its counterpart due to being fixed only at one point instead of several places like traditional models would normally have done – this increase in stability provides greater shot placement consistency along with improving overall control during firing situations which can lead towards higher chances (and confidence) when taking down targets.

Another advantage offered while utilizing this particular type comes through something called 'modularity'. With new features available today such as KeyMod slots or M-Lok options built-in rails added into these products give users even greater versatility regarding where they want various accessories mounted; thus ensuring optimal customization based around individual needs!

How do I install my Free-Float Hand-guard onto my AR-15 Rifle?

Before installing your free float handguard, you should first make sure that you have all the necessary tools required for an AR-15 including a barrel nut wrench, vise block with upper receiver insert and torque driver. Once you have all the tools needed to work on your rifle, the process of installation is relatively easy.

Here are a few steps to follow when installing your Free Float Hand-guard:

  1. Remove old handguard using appropriate method (usually removing screws)
  2. Clean out any debris from inside of the receiver extension or gas tube
  3. Install barrel nut onto upper receiver threads
  4. Slide handguard over threaded end of the barrel till it reaches its final position.
  5. Tighten down barrel nut in accordance with manufacturer specifications or as per requirement (usually between 35-80 ft-lbs depending on model)
    6.Check alignment by ensuring rail system is seated correctly and torqued to spec.

It's important to note that improper installation can lead towards potential malfunctions which might cause serious injuries; it’s always recommended seeking assistance from professionals if unsure how these modifications should be carried out.

Can I use my existing AR 15 parts with a Free Float Hand-guard?

Yes! Most manufacturers produce free float rails compatible with standard mil-spec components; including barrels, gas blocks & tubes amongst others – However this does depend largely upon specific design being utilized and there may be instances where certain parts are not compatible so always check before making any purchases!

While upgrading an older model rifle some additional customizations may need tweaking such as re-profiling buffers or springs adding shims etc., but generally speaking most users will find compatibility issues minimal given proper research beforehand has been taken into account before proceeding further down this path.

What length should I choose for my Free Float Hand-guard?

The answer varies widely based on personal preferences however keep in mind that choosing correct lengths is critical during selection processes alongside the intended application that you plan on using your rifle when outfitted with this type of accessory.

Longer lengths tend to offer greater modularity in terms of adding additional accessories while shorter versions are typically lighter and more maneuverable. It’s important to note that barrel length should also be considered alongside making any purchasing decisions – as sometimes longer rails might interfere when a shooter leans forward over towards their target (most users prefer around 13”-15” sizes for better balance)

In conclusion, Free Float Handguards have become increasingly popular among AR-15 enthusiasts due to their enhanced accuracy, lightweight construction, and versatile customization options. They offer a wide range of benefits over traditional handguards including improved precision shooting, greater stability and rigidity during firing sessions as well providing increased modularity for attaching various accessories such as sights or lights etc., which all leads towards enhancing overall functionality within your firearm setup!

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