Gear Review: Magpul MOE AR 15 Rifle Length Handguard

Magpul has been in the business of making high quality, incredibly functional products since 1999. Anybody who has an AR has undoubtedly considered some piece of gear from the boys out in Boulder. I had never had the chance to put my mitts on a piece of Magpul gear until Nick helped my parents pick out a MIAD Grip Kit for Christmas. I got a little hooked on their gear and decided that my pretty princess needed some cosmetic upgrades for the new year.

 

Enter the MOE Handguard. Quad rail hand guards have their place, but a 20″ heavy barrel AR is not one of them. My AR spends the majority of its life with a scope attached or sitting on a cushy set of sandbags. I really don’t have a need to add lights, lasers, blenders, or vertical grips and with that much weight hanging out front, I like to keep it light. The MOE handguard does all of that and in style, too.

Specifications

  • Cost: $39.95
  • Colors: Black, OD Green, Foliage
  • Weight: 12.13 oz.
  • Length, overall: 12.57 in.
  • Length, mounting: 12.00 in.
  • Height, excluding lip: 2.45 in.
  • Width, max: 2.22 in.
  • Compatible with both ‘direct impingement’ and most piston-driven gas systems
  • Reinforced, heat-resistant polymer construction
  • Integral riveted aluminum heat shield

Ratings (Out of 5 stars)

Fit  * * * * *
If you can do that delta ring dance on the two piece AR handguard, you can install the Magpul pieces. Figuring out top from bottom is a little interesting but once you get it, things snap together crisply and securely. In case you get stuck, it comes with a great instruction manual written by an actual English speaker.

Durability  * * * * *
I’m hesitant to throw my gun around for no reason, but I made sure to rough it up a little bit just for this test. The plastic seems to take abuse with no issues.

Function  * * * * *
These pieces don’t exactly move, so my expectations were high. Luckily, my expectations were met. I fired several quick strings to heat up the barrel but my hands never even got warm. One very nice touch is the flared bits at the end that physically prevent you from grabbing the gas block. This isn’t a huge issue on my gun since the gas block is WAAAY out there but on carbine length guns, this a very good thing.

Sex Appeal  * * * * *

I just made up this category but two out of two TTAG writers agree, this handguard looks gorgeous in person. There is no mistaking that my gun is a futuristic modern sporting rifle.

Overall Rating  * * * * *
Five stars all around. If you like the look, buy with confidence. This is a solid, well-built, dead sexy product from the good guys and girls at Magpul.

comments

  1. avatar Michael B. says:

    I have one on my Adams Arms piston upper and love it. It’s very sleek looking and it functions well for only having a single heat shield. All the vents in it means that things cool down rather quickly.

  2. avatar Matt Gregg says:

    I think a scoped 20″ HBAR would be the ideal setup for some kind of free float, if you don’t want the rails then pick up a carbon fiber tube.

    Thanks for the review still, I run a moe handguard on my BCM carbine upper and it’s great.

    1. avatar Mike says:

      Yeah, to me free floating the barrel is the main reason to get an aftermarket handguard, railed or otherwise. Especially on a scoped rifle.

    2. avatar Tyler Kee says:

      This gun seems to be very accurate with the snap in handguards. Sub MOA if I do my part. If I wanted to eek out a bit more, I could do the free float and carbon fiber tube and probably see a bit more performance.

  3. avatar John Fritz says:

    That’s what Spike’s hung off the front of my brand new ST-15 for me. Very nice.

  4. avatar Charlie says:

    Groovy handguard. I’m torn between the Magpul and Iron Wood stocks for my AR.
    http://ironwooddesigns.com/IWDAR15.html

  5. avatar "Dr." Dave says:

    Was the fit really that easy, or is it just me? I’ve installed several, and they were, and i’m being charitable here, very snug fitting. As in, wrestle with them and assist them into place with a rubber mallet snug.

  6. avatar Chris Dumm says:

    I’m also blessed with a 1 MOA or better AR which isn’t free-floated. I could swap out its stock handguards for something fancier, but I see no reason to. Why spend the money for a carbon-fiber free float tube, and why carry the added weight of a quad rail if you don’t have to?

  7. avatar Mikeb302000 says:

    I’m confused. Is this a barrel shroud or that shoulder thing that goes up?

  8. avatar ThaBakery says:

    Hey,Sick rifle, looks clean… what kind of gas block do you have on there??

    1. avatar Mike says:

      Well, dunno, but I can tell you the front sight is all wrong . . . look how high the front sight post is. That front sight is meant to be mounted on a rail on a handguard, not on a (lower) gas block.

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