Working in a similar fashion to the safety blade in a GLOCK trigger (and so many others, now), Dillon Rifle Company‘s OPAR — On Patrol AR — Trigger will not move rearward unless the safety blade is depressed first. This reduces the likelihood of a foreign object or accidental contact successfully firing the weapon.
When I visited the booth I was amazed by the massive amount of gear and apparel — really nice looking stuff across the board — from a company I had never heard of with, by all appearances, a single firearm product. Turns out they’re a wing of Dillon Aero, manufacturers most famous for their M134 Minigun, and a couple of rifles will be released soon under the Dillon Rifle Co. brand.
The OPAR definitely works as advertised. Its blade safety is not meant to replace the traditional AR-15 safety, but to function as an automatic backup. I realize it likely seems superfluous, and for most of us it is, but those who have bounced around in troop transports and rucked rifles overseas have told me stories of the AR thumb safety getting flicked to “fire” by bumping against the wrong thing the wrong way.
If the OPAR’s blade proves unobtrusive, I’d certainly consider employing it on a gun that sees bumps and brush and generally hard use that may affect the thumb safety.
Okay, yes, I admit these are the Dillon products I’d really like to own: