View Full Version : Give me one good reason for an AR vertical foregrip.

May 1, 2010, 10:44 AM
Educate me.

My bias: Stuff should be as simple as needed to get the job done.

My brother was a SWAT cop. He thinks the forward mounted pistol grip on his M4 AR is good. So does his son, my nephew, who is a SEAL with two (so far) combat tours to the sandbox.

People tell me the weak-hand pistol grip helps control burst fire, even in semi-auto use. Still another told me it allows him to put a tactical light on his forend and so not need to have "spaghetti" wires strung around to make the light switch usable.

I put one on my AR. I took it off after playing with it for a while. I discovered I don't need to have a pistol grip to hit the tactical light switch. And as for recoil management: what recoil?

I'm old. I was raised on the M-14 and M16A2. I'm also a deep-woods grouse and woodcock hunter, and use a variety of shotguns for that purpose. They all have more recoil than an M4. I can handle them very quickly shooting at moving, twisting targets with multiple rounds, and not hit my dog in the process. If a forward pistol grip was useful in that context, somebody would have put one on an L.C. Smith a long time ago. (Watch: somebody will post a picture of just that :D).

There is a fixed stock on my AR (with a Bushy Patrolman's upper on a it most of the time), because I can get a good cheek weld without a lot of add-on stuff to a collapsible stock, and I'm not crammed into a vehicle with the gun most of the time where 5" of shortness makes any difference. There is a red dot on it, which I like. (It makes the gun look really scary and actually contributes to its utility).

What am I not appreciating here?

May 1, 2010, 10:48 AM
I find for my shooting that a vertical foregrip isn't a necessary item. I get a good grip on my rifles without one.

May 1, 2010, 10:56 AM
Can't think of any....:confused:

May 1, 2010, 10:59 AM
They look cool

WildandthatsimportantAlaska TM

May 1, 2010, 11:04 AM
VFG's isn't for everyone,I don't care for them either. That said they do have there place just not on my AR.

May 1, 2010, 11:18 AM
I don't use one either, I hold my AR like most of my other rifles. Seems to work fine for me.

May 1, 2010, 11:26 AM
Well I use a two point sling and hasty-sling it so I have a rock solid grip on the standard handguard and a VFG would only interfere with that so I don't have a need or desire for one. However, I will say that some buddies of mine have one point tactical slings and VFG's and the set-up feels pretty darn good when i hold it.

My guess is if you're a marksman (slowish cadence, calculate every shot, not rapid fire) then a VFG isn't needed. But if you're LE or Military and you will be making shorter distance shots and plenty follow up shots then maybe it would be nice.

May 1, 2010, 11:26 AM
Having a bit of nerve and bone damage in my left arm from a motorcycle wreck 19 years ago a VFG makes using my M4 easier in multiple positions.

May 1, 2010, 12:00 PM
As you add more weight to the front of the weapon (i.e. rail, light and often a laser designator) the vertical foregrip helps move the front end around more quickly to engage targets. It also provides another place to mount a pressure switch for your light/laser. This is more important in a CQB environment.

Many of us cut our teeth on the "old ways" as you did and they are still very effective if you train. A VFG is simply another way of doing things. I will say that I have found them to be very beneficial in an urban environment.

Just out of curiosity and not meaning to poke you with a pointy stick but your LEO brother and SEAL nephew told you they both thought VFG's were good. Were they not able to adequately explain the functions, utility and weaknesses as it pertains to both LE and modern warfare?

May 1, 2010, 12:18 PM
IIRC, in the big army, VFGs gave soldiers a 65% hit-rate increase.

May 1, 2010, 12:18 PM
You might also try the Magpul AFG. I use that and it's perfect for me (tennis elbow).

Come and take it.
May 1, 2010, 12:20 PM
It does seem to help keep the gun on target in rapid fire. Which if I am not mistaken was the reason the thompson 45 had a forward grip.

May 1, 2010, 01:02 PM
I use one on mine. I find that I like it better than the handguard, maybe because it's a carbine. It does control recoil better for me and my AR has far more recoil than my FAL, though it is by no means objectionable. If I had a full-sized AR, I doubt I'd have one on it.

May 1, 2010, 01:26 PM
I think the major reason why I have a VFG on my Olympic Arms K3B-M4 is because the gun tends to heat up easily, and with the foregrip, my hand isn't directly on the handguard, making it easier and more comfortable to hold without my left hand getting hot.

May 1, 2010, 01:56 PM
If it folds up, you can get by with one less sandbag when shooting groups at the range.

May 1, 2010, 02:14 PM
Just out of curiosity and not meaning to poke you with a pointy stick but your LEO brother and SEAL nephew told you they both thought VFG's were good. Were they not able to adequately explain the functions, utility and weaknesses as it pertains to both LE and modern warfare?

"Control" was the reason given. In my nephew's case, I'm sure he meant primarily in "rock-and-roll" mode. In fact, he installed the VFG on his dad's weapon, and I kind of think my brother just went along with it. The other thing in my mind is that they were/are snipers in their primary team roles, and perhaps not as focused on the CQB stuff as might otherwise be the case. I'll have to needle him about that and see what he says. (You should alawys tease your little brother).

One other reason I was given was that those (right-handed) shooters who use the magazine well as a VFG run some risk of blocking the ejection port with their fingers, causing an FTE. I don't know how real this concern is for a trained operator.

May 1, 2010, 02:18 PM
my AR has far more recoil than my FAL

That surprises me, Stevie-Ray. What kind of stocks do you have on those weapons? There's no question that my FAL pushes me around more than my AR or AK.

May 1, 2010, 02:48 PM
I like the Magpul AFG...I hold it like the standard handguards, but the angle makes it less stressful on my wrist...


May 1, 2010, 04:08 PM
I use mine as a hand stop. I'd probably be a bit better off using a Magpul AFG, but I bought my TD stubby QD grip before the AFG hit the market.

Are they mandatory? By no means. Will they help your shooting? Not necessarily. Can they give you some added flexibility depending on your shooting style? Sure. Can they detract from your shooting. Of course.

May 1, 2010, 04:14 PM
Well, this is pretty good

May 1, 2010, 06:00 PM
Thanks, RT. Bart's write up makes some sense. Upon reflection, I didn't find the VFG comfortable for my wrist, either.

May 1, 2010, 07:42 PM
Because with the pistol grip, magazine, carrying handle, folding/telescoping stock, front sight, bayonet lug, weapons rails and whatever the #%$& you can hang on them, there are never enough "things" sticking out in all directions from a rifle to satisfy some people.

Seriously though, a vertical fore-grip does allow your left hand to be in a more natural position than a horizontal fore-end. But the flaw in the logic is that it should be angled forward at least 45-60 degrees for your hand to be in a truly natural position. How would that be for getting snagged on anything and everything? Well, most of these "modular tactical weapons systems" are snag-o-matics, anyway. The Magpul looks good though.

I feel I can hold a rifle steadier form the off-hand position without it. That's just me.

May 2, 2010, 01:03 AM
i have broken my left wrist twice, both times through the growth plate when i was 13 and 17...if im shooting "normal" sporting arms my left wrist is in alot of pain after a while, i can shoot my m4 all day and my wrist doesnt hurt..if only i could afford that much ammo:D

because of my girlie left wrist, here is how i set up my m4, i followed the k.i.s.s. principle and kept it LIGHT- dpms lower, colt 16'' m4 upper with standard handguards, blackhawk rail adapter, blackhawk front grip, magpul buttstock, single point sling, A.R.M.S. "swan sleeve" buis, aimpoint, tac-latch and extended trigger guard...everything you need, nothing you dont, i cant shoot any of my friends guns for long, they all have full length rails, free float rails, flashlights ect. ect. and their guns on range from 2-3 pounds heavier than mine..

May 2, 2010, 02:04 AM
A grip on your rifle is a good thing after carrying your rifle at the low ready for several hours.

Other than that, not so much.

A grip pod is a great investment. Not sure if I would buy one for myself, but when Uncle Sam provided one for my m4 I used it with good effect.


May 3, 2010, 06:29 PM
That surprises me, Stevie-Ray. What kind of stocks do you have on those weapons? There's no question that my FAL pushes me around more than my AR or AK. Standard CAR adjustable type on the Colt and Standard wood on the FAL. My FAL is probably heavier than yours for one thing. Have you adjusted your gas setting properly on the FAL? Mine barely spits out the brass to fall neatly about a foot or so behind me to my right. Consequently, it feels like a .22, no fooling. If your FAL blasts out brass to land 10 or 15 feet behind you, like some I've seen, you've got an adjustment to make. Man, some of the guys I've seen are beating themselves up needlessly and battering the gun to hell and gone.:rolleyes: Hopefully, yours is tossing the brass quite far. If so, it's an easy fix.;)

May 3, 2010, 06:52 PM
Good reason for a vertical grip????

use it as a hand stop. I never grip my VG. I use it as a hand stop so i always grab my forearm in the same place. consistancy. I like this over an magpul AFG because i can still use the vert grip if i need to.

really, you dont need a vert grip. Watch the magpul dynamice video.

May 3, 2010, 07:35 PM
Here's the most important reason mentioned ....

M4 Carbines sometimes malfunction in the field due to magazine misalignment. What causes this? Ninety-nine percent of the time it is due to the user putting excessive pressure on the magazine while firing. When I grab for an M4 I naturally rest my left hand on the front of the magazine, because that is what feels right!

Put a foregrip on, and save yourself the headache.

May 4, 2010, 12:45 AM
I find that if I am keeping the carbine in a "ready" position or a fighting stance, ie butt stock on the shoulder muzzle at 45 degrees, or level, or painting w/ a light, that the VFG is less tiresome.

Also, geared up w/ tac vest, armor and more gut than I had 10 years ago, I don't have to struggle into shooting positions where I will brace my elbow (well actually the flat behind at the tricep) on my knee/thigh. The VFG requires less bend at the waist to do so. For me anyway, I am not as contorted as w/ a regular grip on the forearm. Before installing a VFG, I found myself sliding the forehand back to the magazine well and basically using the mag/magwell as a grip. My VFG mounts in such a fashion that the thumb on my support arm can run the tailcap switch of my weapon light, w/ no wires or velcro necessary.