Magpul B.A.D. Review
For all the accessories I’ve put on my AR, no accessory has garnered more attention than the Magpul B.A.D. I know the Magpul B.A.D. has been out for a while (I got mine over a year ago), but hands down, it’s my favorite AR-15 accessory I’ve experienced to date. Every time I’m at the range, someone has to ask what it is, or has heard of it and wants to try it out–everyone seems to have the same reaction, “I’ve gotta get one of these…”
Magpul’s B.A.D. stands for Battery Assist Device, and it basically allows a user to manipulate the AR-15 bolt catch and release from their firing hand while still maintaining the original operation of the bolt catch. It’s probably the easiest modification anyone can do to an AR, and simultaneously the biggest improvement to the weapon system.
Check out the full review and pictures after the jump…
Installation is a breeze–all one has to do is place the back plate of the Magpul BAD behind the bolt release, place the BAD over it, and attach with the supplied allen screw. It literally took me 90 seconds to install and test. As I said before, it’s probably the easiest modification you can make to your AR-15.
Operating the Magpul B.A.D. is just as easy as installing it. The BAD is just a lever that transfers the function of the ping-pong paddle bolt release to be accessible to one’s right hand (normally their firing control hand). With just a simple lift of an index finger, one can operate the bolt catch. When the bolt is locked to the rear, a simple push down releases the bolt. The true genius is it’s simplistic design, it works flawlessly, and for me, it makes operating he AR-15 much more efficient.
Magazine change times are exponentially decreased with the Magpul B.A.D. Lever. Before, I would have to change a magazine in the typical fashion–release empty magazine, insert full magazine, reach with my left hand and press the ping pong paddle, then left hand goes to handguards. With a Magpul BAD, steps can be performed harmoniously. The firing control hand can now perform all the steps normally associated with the bolt release, allowing the bolt to be released while simultaneously placing the reaction hand at the forward grip immediately after inserting the fresh magazine–this dramatically decreases reload times. Pair the Magpul BAD with a RediMag system as seen in the photos, and one can change a magazine in about 2 seconds.
Another function the Magpul BAD lever assists with is clearing malfunctions. Being able to to lock the bolt back so quickly really comes in handy here. For double feeds, the Magpul BAD is a life saver–just lock the bolt back, which you can do with a Magpul BAD without ever taking your hand off of fire control, drop the magazine, release the bolt by pressing your finger down on the lever, and rack, rack, rack, rack, lock the bolt back, insert magazine and release. Again, all while never taking your hand off of fire control. Before this task for me, was a little cumbersome because it required me to take my hand off of fire control to pull the charging handle back while my left hand would hold the bolt catch; with a Magpul BAD, my hands are where they need to be, making the task a cake walk.
You guys (and girls) might be thinking, what about working the Magpul BAD with the left hand? Well, the function is a little different, but almost as instinctual. From the left hand, you would just operate the bolt release as normal, by simply pressing it with your left index finger; for the bolt catch, you would just press on the side of the lever. It takes a little bit more training than the operation from the right hand; however, it’s not hard to imagine the average shooter grasping the operations for both hands with one trip to the range.
It’s easy to come to the conclusion that I totally love the Magpul BAD. When asked about it, I tell people it should be standard issue on an AR. Being able to keep your hand on fire control is a god send in regards to bolt manipulation. I can see why Magpul included a similar functional philosophy to their ACR design with being able operate the bolt functions from fire control (although on the ACR, its identically ambidextrous). For about 30 dollars and 90 seconds of someones time, one can seriously improve all the bolt manipulation functions of their AR-15 with a Magpul BAD, and after a year of use, its still my favorite accessory/modification to my AR-15.