How Interchangeable are AR 15 Accessories?

The short-and-sweet answer is pretty darn. You will likely hear it time and time again from AR 15 enthusiasts: one of the biggest advantages this firearm has over so many others is how easily customizable it is, from the charging handle to the barrel length and beyond. As we discussed in our past blog, the lower receiver is the actual firearm component of the AR 15 and the only serialized part, which means you can swap out any of the components on the upper assembly without going through all the steps necessary to buy a firearm each time you want a different component. But, beyond the actual components of the AR 15, what does that mean for accessories?


A Wealth of Options

The modular nature of the AR 15 means easy customization to get it to your preferred specifications but, more importantly than that, the fact that only the lower receiver is serialized opens the door for so many options. Primarily, it means that production of the best AR accessories and parts is not restricted to the firearm manufacturers themselves, which are major production companies like Colt and Armalite. Instead, the AR 15’s modular nature means that anyone with the engineering and production know-how can make and sell their own custom AR parts, whether that’s a full upper receiver kit or just bolt carrier group options. This, in turn, means that smaller companies can stand just as strong in the world of AR 15 upper assembly parts as those major manufacturers do, which gives AR 15 owners a wealth of options. Not only is the AR 15 a very small business-friendly firearm, it means AR 15 owners get so many more options that are compatible, easily installed, and the highest quality.


Let’s Talk Rails

Part of the great customizability of the AR 15 is that AR owners aren’t limited to one handguard/rail system option. The original and arguably the most common AR 15 rail system is the Picatinny rail system, which is the military standard rail for the M16. However, developers VLTOR and Magpul Industries have created open-source designs meant to offer alternatives through the KeyMod and M-LOK rail systems respectively. Both rail systems offer easy attachment points for the best AR accessories with less weight than the Picatinny rail system. Beyond the most common three, the team at Bootleg, Inc. have created a hybrid rail system that meshes the three-dimensional structure of the Picatinny rails with the sturdy attachment points of the KeyMod system. Our goal in doing so was to open the door for more customizability; with both systems in one, you can attach all the best AR accessories easily.


Picking the Best AR Accessories

Often, when it comes to choosing your AR accessories, any potential limitation lies with its compatibility with a given rail system; however, the plethora of companies making custom AR parts means you can either swap out your upper assembly for a new rail system or you can find a comparable accessory (if not the exact same with a different attachment option) easily enough.


If you’re looking for the best AR accessories, from our PicMod rail system to upper assembly parts, shop Bootleg, Inc. online today!


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