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During the SHOT show I ran a story about the TS3, commenting on its 15 inch barrel and pinned and welded flash hider. In the article I combined the statements from a couple of VLTOR employees about the design and use of the TS3, and one of those employees contacted me this week to inform me that I had inaccurately represented his remarks. While I believe I accurately distilled the information presented to me, we strive to bring you the truth about guns here and I wanted to print Mr. O’Brien’s objections and corrections to my article in its entirety as provided to me via email.

The TS3 was never intended to be a 16” barreled carbine, but the 14.5” with a mid-length is not a desirable system due to reliability issues that are well documented by the military and government.  We would have run a carbine-length gas system with the 14.5” length, but that configuration is no longer available through Noveske.  Our choice to go shorter than 16” was due to customer demand.

VLTOR never said our customers ‘just want an A2 flash hider’.  We didn’t want to use a specialized mount that most users would never use, and if we used a surefire mount then surely we’d have customers who would want an AAC while others would want no suppressor mount at all.  We felt we’d leave it to the customer and allow them to make their own choice based on their own intended uses.  R&R of a pinned and welded hider isn’t rocket surgery, and is only a modest cost for most folks.  If one has any question about their gunsmith being able to swap it out, then they need a new gunsmith.

VLTOR never tested a 14.5” mid-length configuration due to on-hand testing data that shows this as a sub-optimal system.  Opening the gas port until it works isn’t the greatest solution, as it takes an inordinately large port to make it work with all ammo, under all conditions.  The 15” was tested and showed performed far closer to nominal without going to too-large a port.

Jeffrey O’Brien
Lead Engineer
Abrams Airborne MFG. Inc.

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  1. Honestly, I don’t see why they don’t offer purchasers the CHOICE of what muzzle device to install in the first place…

    • They don’t offer a choice because it would come at a cost that would make them less competitive in an over-saturated market and slow the delivery of the product. There are plenty of capable gunsmiths ready to build a custom gun to the customers specifications and I don’t believe that VLTOR is striving to be a custom gun manufacturer, just a quality manufacturer with a unique product. I’m sure they would love to cater to every individual but unfortunately it’s not that profitable.


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