Courtesy Chris Dumm for The Truth About Guns
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Courtesy Chris Dumm for The Truth About Guns

A couple of days ago, Tyler stumbled across the web site of York Arms, a manufacturer who will make limited runs of AR-15 or AR-10 lowers with custom engravings, serial numbers, selector switch icons, or anything else. This got Tyler thinking in a direction of which Nick, Dan, Joe and I heartily approve: Why doesn’t Farago send us each a custom TTAG AR-15 for Hanukkah/Christmas/Festivus/Hogfather’s Night/Winter Solstice/Holiday Of Our Choice?  . . .

This idea caught on with us writers (well duh?) and ideas about our custom engraved ARs were soon flying around thicker and faster than lead in Kandahar. Nick suggested that the selector switch be marked SAFE/FIRE/GIGGLE, in memoriam of the full-auto ARs we’ll almost certainly never own. He also thinks they should be marked with the TTAG logo and URL so that we get some brand placement every time we take them to the range or use them to test components and accessories.

My own execrable Photoshop skills are on display in the title photo. I think our TTAG lowers need some kind of humorous but intuitive selector markings like those in the photo. Perhaps the Stars and Stripes for ‘FIRE.’ and a white flag of surrender (or the French Tricoleur – which is the same thing) for ‘SAFE?’

Engraving the TTAG QR code on the magazine well might be a cool idea, so that fellow shooters can scan our rifles with their smartphones and be directed straight to our blog. And I’d definitely want TTAG custom serial numbers to bring a whole new meaning to the creed “This is my rifle. There are others like it, but this one is mine.”

Now we put it to you, dear readers: what should we engrave on our hypothetical limited-edition TTAG-build AR-15’s? And how many of you would be interested in reserving one for yourself?

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    • Why ask for a product that’s readily available on the market today? I’ve seen at least 3-4 AR lower receivers for sale online with the 2A engraved on the outside wall of the mag well.

  1. I see we have a Terry Pratchett fan in the (editorial) house. Excellent.

    Personally, I’d like custom safety markings that say “Threaten” and “Destroy”.

    PS: Please no QR codes on a rifle. I see enough “robot barf” littered everywhere else. Don’t need that on my guns. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

  2. i’ve seen these done before, and you want to make sure to have “(safe)” and “(fire)” underneath whatever wording or logo you use – i believe for liability reasons.

    Just a word of advice…

    When do we need to put in our orders?

    • Yeah, screw that “liability reasons” stuff. There are plenty of manufacturers (see: HK’s entire product line) that use nothing but pictograms for their selector swtiches, with nary an English language (or any other, for that matter) word in sight.

      • When I accidentally shoot my toe off because I couldn’t interpret the safe/fire markings, I’ll rename this site “Bobo’s Truth (About Guns).” (i have a good lawyer)

        …just kidding…this didn’t hamper my chances of scoring one of these stripped lowers, did it?

  3. French flag for safe/surrender? LOL, so mean.

    Sure, it’s fun to make fun of the French for weird movies, body hair, and getting owned in two different world wars, but I also like to remind the students that I teach that the French gave us the Statute of Liberty and dudes like Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette during that little thing called the Revolutionary War.

    I vote for SAFE, FIRE, GIGGLE!

    • I just thought of one that’s like the answer to a riddle: How do you, by changing just ONE of the normal words, totally change the meaning of the other two?


    • Heh. Never realized it, but you’re right. There’s as much text on my Ruger Mark II Target pistol as there is on any three other guns I own, combined.

  4. I kinda like the one that u have in the pic but maybe add a nuke cloud for the full auto position. After that tell us the price. That all being said i suspect you wont get a general consensous and people will back out of buying them if you dont ask for cash up front.

  5. If you’re giving it as a Christmas gift, shouldn’t it be “Naughty” and “Nice” with “Blitzen” for the optional full-auto position?

  6. Whatever is decided upon, remember that less is more. Clean, uncluttered and professional are desirable guidelines for any TTAG-branded product.

    I’d hate to see a TTAG lower (which I absolutely would purchase) end up looking amateurish or cheap. Especially as time goes by.

    I’m sure at some point in the past plenty of folks thought that goofy spider on one of my favorite ARs was a good idea.

  7. Two fingers on a hand for “SAFE” like the old “Peace” symbol, and one middle finger for fire position ….
    very intuitive


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