BAD lever (or similar) function on an AR


June 22, 2012, 05:47 PM
I'm seriously considering putting a BAD lever (or comparable competitors product) on my AR, but when I start researching them, I see a few reviews saying they prevented the bolt from locking back reliably. I'd like to hear from you guys if your bolt worked right after you installed it.

This would be going on a .223 varmint upper. Just used to drop the bolt with my thumb after inserting a mag. I'm left handed and while I can reach the bolt release with my trigger finger, it's a bit of a stretch.

No need to get sidetracked about merits of use in "tactical/combat" situations or whether or not it worked right (or not) with a .22 upper. Only 223, only range use.

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June 22, 2012, 06:01 PM
I have had them on a couple different guns, with varying results. My M&P and Colt didnt like them, and the bolt closed on an empty mag more often than not. My Armalites dont seem to mind them at all, and theres no difference in function.

One thing you do need to watch, is laying the guns down on a hard surface with the bolt locked back, port up. The weight of the gun on the lever tends to drop the bolt.

Rail Driver
June 22, 2012, 06:57 PM
I've had an extended ambi bolt release on all of my AR-15 rifles for the past 4+ years. I'm down to only one rifle now, but I've never had a problem with the bolt locking when it's supposed to.

I'm right handed, and I use the lever extensively when training. It cuts almost a third of a second off my reload time (I'm back on target shooting .3 sec. faster vs. standard bolt release).

For a left hander, in range only use, there's little utility for the item - it's definitely geared towards competition/self defense use.

June 22, 2012, 07:07 PM
I'm left handed and after I ordered a BAD lever I could find no benefit to it after I saw how it worked. I didn't even install it.

June 22, 2012, 07:30 PM
I can't think of a single reason I would ever need one.
Your left thumb or left trigger finger is almost in the right place to hit the bolt release when you stuff in a new magazine.

Unless you are shooting a 3-gun match against a stop-watch, I see no advantage, and lots of disadvantages.


June 22, 2012, 07:55 PM
I have one on the AR that has a RediMag attached to it. You should see how fast I can reload that thing. But with the RediMag on there, it's almost a necessity.

I've never had any sort of bolt lock failure.

But none of the other ones have one, nor do I plan on putting one on them.

June 22, 2012, 08:08 PM
I have found issues on some ARs if the bad lever screw is slightly long it will push the bho open away from the receiver causing it to catch the bolt.

A simple file ofa fraction of a millimeter on the screw length has worked well for me.

June 22, 2012, 08:29 PM
I have one on all of mine and I have never had a problem.

Shawn Dodson
June 22, 2012, 08:38 PM
The primary benefit of the MagPul BAD is locking the bolt open to clear a stoppage. It doesn't require re-positioning of both hands.

Without the BAD a shooter must: 1) move the support hand to work the bolt stop, and 2) move the firing hand to work the charging handle.

With the BAD the shooter need only move the support hand to work the charging handle.

I don't use it to release the bolt (nor do I manually disengage the bolt stop on an AR without a BAD). Just like with my handguns I retract and release the charging handle.

An AR equipped with a BAD sometimes will not lock the bolt open on an empty magazine. That doesn't matter as the primary immediate action in response to a stoppage (including an empty magazine) is "Tap, Roll & Rack", just like with a handgun.

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