View Full Version : AR-15 Railed Hand Guards (Forends)

June 13, 2010, 03:17 PM
Hello Everyone,

I am considering adding some railed hand guards (forends) for my AR-15 rifle and carbine.

What are considered the highest quality and most precisely made models?

As a long time user of the standard hand guard designs, I am particularly interested in how these railed forends affect the handling qualities of the AR-15. So any comments along these lines are most welcome.

Thank you for your input.


David the Gnome
June 13, 2010, 03:24 PM
The biggest advantage to the railed forend, in my opinion, is that it allows the barrel to cool more efficiently and keeps your fingers further from the hot parts. With the standard forend I inevitably will wrap my fingers around the top and touch the heatshield with the tip of one of my fingers :eek:. Talk about messing up your shot. :p

June 13, 2010, 03:56 PM
daniel defense,troy, and larue tactical are among the tops

June 13, 2010, 04:01 PM
Well, there are a ton of options. First for the handling aspect, I actually like them better than the standard handguards. It depends if you add rail covers, which I think look better than exposed rails. It's just a personal preference. David is right on with the heat dissapation. It can't possibly hurt.

1. Troy Industries. (Great, but a little overpriced IMO)
2. Daniel Defense.
3. Larue (very good, very pricey)
4. Yankee Hill Machine
5. Midwest Industries. (mid Range quality, good price)
6. Lewis Machine Tool. (if you want to break the bank)

To be perfectly honest though, I have a UTG quad rail on my carbine. It retails for $119 in my area, and here is the kicker, its made by YHM, costs a lot less money.

If you are in doubt, just go troy, and be happy. For the most part, they are a lot like scopes. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR, in most cases.

June 13, 2010, 04:02 PM
Check out the Daniel Defense Omega if you don't feel like removing your gasblock.

June 13, 2010, 05:46 PM
Or the VLTOR CASV-EL for a carbine, CASV-M for a midlength...

June 13, 2010, 08:09 PM
Ive had a Yankee Hill diamond formation quad rail on my carbine for about 6 months now and I love it. It is extremely good fitting and feeling.

Not to mention I have put that poor ole gun through hell and back with those rails on it (snow, sleet, rain, mud, dropped several times, banged around, thousands and thousands and thousands of rounds) and i haven't had to maintain them at all.

June 13, 2010, 10:16 PM
Yankee Hill "Smooth" forearm... Full top rail with 3-4" of quad rail at the end. Much more comfortable (and lightweight) than a full length quad.

June 13, 2010, 11:05 PM
For a carbine length I love the Yankee Hill quad rail..

June 13, 2010, 11:42 PM
Has anyone tried the KAC railed hand guards?

June 14, 2010, 06:35 AM
I have two sets of YHM on is a ONE piece and the other a two Piece. I like the two piece better and it is just as tight as the one pc.

Double Naught Spy
June 14, 2010, 07:23 AM
Check out the Daniel Defense Omega if you don't feel like removing your gasblock.

I have put quad rails on 4 of my own guns now and never removed a gas block. I take it that the "one piece" tubes such as what Log was talking about?

The handling qualities of your AR should not change with any real significance unless possibly you change from non-floated to floated rails and if so. The weight/balance of your gun can change.

June 14, 2010, 08:29 AM
Troy battle rail or DD Omega are good. I have both.

June 14, 2010, 12:52 PM
Has anyone tried the KAC railed hand guards?

That's all I run. They have some free float models out now too. I just run the regular military M4 RAS (3 of them).

I hate to support that nut Mark LaRue, but If I was going to get a Free Float rail, I'd have to be his since his rail heights/widths match the KAC original formula. I hate oddball bottom and side rail heights/widths.

Bartholomew Roberts
June 14, 2010, 01:00 PM
I've owned Knight's and Daniel Defense and tried several dozen others. It all depends on what you want and what you are looking for.

One of the common areas where handguards differ is the profile - for example, my Knights FF-RAS was perfect 1913 spec on all four rails. This made for a round, and slightly fat handguard; but it would take any mount that met 1913 specs.

My Daniel Defense 9.0 (old model with aluminium barrel nut) actually had a lighter installed weight than heat-shielded plastic handguards. It also had an oval profile - it was perfect 1913 spec on the top and bottom rails; but the slots were shallower on the sides to give the handguard a "slimmer" feel. This means that mounting devices that rely on the proper 1913 slot depth to mount may not mount on the side (though often they do anyway).

Now, there are a bazillion different mounting methods, profiles, etc. to choose from. I'd give some careful thought to what features you want out of the rail system and then which rail system will be an easier choice to make.