AR-15 grips, are they that bad?


May 14, 2003, 05:49 AM
Is the "gapper" add on a joke? I can't believe the normal grips would lead to blisters and such.

If it is, I may try to find a new grip for the rifle I don't have yet. 1 week and still no lower receiver (on backorder 1-2 weeks).

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Southern Raider
May 14, 2003, 06:14 AM
Go take a tactical rifle class where you are constantly changing magazines on the rifle for 2 or 3 days. During mag changes, the middle finger of the trigger hand supports a large part of the weight of the rifle. At the end of the first day, the corner of the grip had worn a hole in my middle finger.

In my experience, the Gapper is a joke. It is intended to keep the rear of the trigger guard from rubbing on your finger and doing the same thing. The problem is that I needed to protect myself from the grip and not the receiver.

I went to a Duckbill grip, but any grip that is better contoured in that area will serve you well. I'm sure you can file/sand the issue grip as well.

Marko Kloos
May 14, 2003, 07:29 AM
The factory grip is one of the few weak spots of the AR design. It's too skinny for guys with even slightly large hands, and the middle finger of the shooting hand rubs up against the bottom of the trigger guard in an irritating fashion.

I switched to the Facon Industries ERGO's a $20 unit that's molded like a HK91/G3 grip. It fills the hand much better, and the slight finger grooves keep your hand lower and your middle finger away from the bottom trigger guard.

Jeff White
May 14, 2003, 11:52 AM
The gapper works. Southern Raider is correct in that when training on roper weaons handling, charging, mag changes etc. you will hold most of the weight of the weapon in your firing hand, keeping the muzzle on target and charging the weapon and changing magazines with your weak hand. Depending on how you hold the weapon, you will soon rub your middle finger raw from either the corner of the pistol grip or the gap between the trigger guard and the pistol grip. The gapper fixes that. I started shooting with nomex flyers gloves to prevent that, but it got very hot training in July and August. Jim Crews sold me on the Gapper. He gave me one to try during a break in class and sold me on the concept.

A field expediant is to put t tightly rolled foam earplug in the gap.

A word of caution for military and police shooters. If you change the grip or controls on your personal weapon and then have to fight with a different one for whatever reason, you may not be as efficient. I'd keep everything the way all the ones my agency issued are.


May 14, 2003, 12:37 PM
2nd on the Ergo Grip.

May 14, 2003, 02:36 PM
I have an ergo, a pachmyer (SP?), and a sierra precision. Its so inexpensive and easy to change to something you like why not? (unless your in a situation like JW mentioned). Triggers, grips and sights are things i tend to mess with on all of my guns.

I keep intending to take one of my gi grips put a blob of bondo on it and use a latex glove with mold release and see if i can come up with a custom job.

May 14, 2003, 07:47 PM
Ergo grip? You kids and your new fangled fancy shmancy doo dads.

In my day we used OD 100mph tape and we liked it that way.

/cranky old man voice

Seriously, it's not pretty but it does work. Oh and a field expediant fix is to stuff a foamy type earplug into the gap also.

edit- I swear, I never saw Jeff Whites post until I hit enter. Wow, that's spooky. almost word for word...

Double Naught Spy
May 14, 2003, 09:02 PM
Before changing the stock grip to a duckbill grip, the way in which I kept from blistering my finger was to stuff a single foam ear plug into the gap. It was easy, cheap, and effective.

May 14, 2003, 09:48 PM
I've never tried it before, but suddenly im struck with an inspiration!

What about a foam earplug!?

:evil: :neener:

May 14, 2003, 11:44 PM
yeah...uhm...that might work.

May 15, 2003, 12:08 AM
I did it squashed it flat and rolled it up and with the help of an allen wrench stuffedit works great,very intelligent anbd cheap .I love it:what: :banghead:

May 15, 2003, 11:07 AM
No, the gapper is no joke. I have taken a couple of tactical rifle classes and after firing the rifle all day for a couple days you get a hot spot on your finger right where the gapper goes. I have tried the gapper and it prevents this. I personally have never had a blister or anything, just a sore spot on your finger. I can't see very many regular sport shooters having this problem other than at a class where you are shooting all day for days on end.
You could use an earplug, but why ? What does a gapper cost ? Almost nothing ? I have them on all my ARs.

The factory grip works fine for me. All nine of mine are stock.

May 15, 2003, 11:13 AM
What about wearing gloves or putting duct tape on the offending part?

That Ergogrip looks neat though...

May 15, 2003, 01:30 PM
You know what, you guys should try just stuffing a foam ear plug into the gap. :evil:

May 15, 2003, 01:36 PM
mmmm, I dont see whats wrong with the original M16/M16A1 grip. I never had any problem with them and thats what I like on most of my AR's. Then again, I like the short A1 stock and the AK's small grip and stock. My sling supports most of the weight of the rifle during a mag change, at least the way I do it most of the time. I've tried the ERGO grips and the trapdoor, oversized grips and didnt like them. I guess its like anything else, just personal preference.

Badger Arms
May 16, 2003, 01:32 AM

I don't know what kind of MIDGET designed the AR-15 grip, but it is about 3/4" too short for me. I am forced to move my hand back about that far and there is a gap between my thumb web and the grip. The palm of my hand contacts the grip about the ring finger and it's highly awkward. I'm going to splurge one day and get me a rite-pull attachment for everything but my CMP gun. Does anybody know if the rite-pull is CMP legal?

May 16, 2003, 04:07 AM
I don't think it is...but I'm certainly no authority. I just repeat what I read in catalogues. ;)


Joe Demko
May 16, 2003, 09:52 AM
Gapper? Feh. In my day we just stuffed one of those foam earplugs into it.

May 16, 2003, 10:10 AM
I haven't noticed the problem with AR's, but I sometimes experience the same thing with the square trigger guard of my Beretta during extended training sessions. I sometimes put a small band aid on my middle finger where it contacts the trigger guard.

May 16, 2003, 12:02 PM
I find the actual grips ok (I have small hands), but the gapper is a great invention. I picked one up for $2 at a gunshow, and it fixed my problem. My Colt SP1 would actually cut my second finger. Maybe when I'm bored I will pick up an Ergo or some other fancy grip, but for now, the stock grips are fine.

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