Shooting a long gun left-handed may place the face in close proximity of the ejection port. Case in point is the AR configuration. Since I shoot the AR left handed, I sometimes grip the magazine well with my right hand. For long range shooting, I use a two-point sling to assist me in steadying the firearm for a more precise shot and I grip the magazine well for most general shooting and close quarters work. Therein lays the rub.
At times my thumb will crawl up on its own accord and occasionally interfered with ejected rounds. This happened only once; I became cognizant of what I was doing, and corrected my grip. I needed something that would help me keep my thumb away from the ejection port while providing me with a platform to hold the magazine well and would not interfere with removing and inserting magazines.
I did a little research and found the MAKO AR MagazineWell Grip at Amazon . It looked like it would fit the bill, although there were a few negative comments, and which I disregarded. I needed something to cure my AR ailment, something to review, and this grip seemed a likely prospect.Two panels and 3 Allen head screw comprise the grip.[/caption]The grip consists of two panels that are fastened together with Allan head screws and nuts. The grip has a sculptured look to it and has three textured finger grooves in which to rest your digits used for gripping. It is well made and all edges are, for the most part, rounded off to give the grip a finished appearance and feel.
Inside the grip are two grooves in which the bottom lip of the AR magazine well is supposed to rest in to help to secure the grip in place.
As stated in the product description (with my comments in parenthesis):
- The MWG converts the magazine well into a comfortable vertical grip for better control of the weapon. (It does do that)
- Allows a tight stance for speed and maneuverability. (Has nothing to do with stance)
- Prevents pressure on non-free-floating handguards that can affect accuracy. (It does do that, as there is no contact of the grip with the hand guard)
- Keeps hands off the magazine. (Fair to say that this is mostly correct)
- Functions as a flared and extended magazine well to speed reloads. (True, if the magazine can be fully inserted into the magazine well – Read my comment to this later)
- Has a window to view your serial number through. (True, if your serial number aligns with the window, which it may not as it did not with my Windham Weaponry SRC).
- MIL-SPEC reinforced polymer. (I can’t disagree with this)
Installation is not a breeze; it will take some work, a few tools, and a few soft utterances of profanity before the job is done.
You will need a 2.5mm Allen Wrench, as it is not supplied with one. You may also need; an X-acto tool, a few files, some fine-grit sandpaper, possibly a Dremel tool, and some patience.It is important to “dry-fit” each panel before you begin, as there are a few areas of concern. You may find yourself using the above stated tools to “sculpture” each panel to ensure the proper fit. The groove in each panel, which locks onto the lip of the magazine well, may require some surgery for the panel to fit correctly. After some possible cutting, filing, sanding, and swearing you may find that the fit is acceptable. If it is; attach the three Allen-head screws, tighten them evenly to pull the panels together, and you now will have an assembled product. The MAKO AR MagazineWell Grip looks “tacticool” on the AR and it really fits my hand. With the good; however, there is the bad. If you are using Magpul magazines of the 10-round or 20-round versions, they will not fully lock in the magazine well. The reason is the back rib (spine) on these magazines. On the back rib, there is an extrusion that is more cosmetic than anything, but it does prevent the magazine to be inserted past a certain point.
Unfortunately, the rear of the MAKO AR MagazineWell Grip interferes with the magazine being inserted fully as the extrusion on the magazine hits the inside of the flared grip. Lancer magazines and Magpul 30-round magazine will work fine (as well as others). To prove my assessment, I filed down the extrusion on a Magpul 20-round magazine until it was flush with the spine and well-rounded to clear the inside of the grip. I also, and as much as I dared, “scultured” the inside of the MAKO AR MagazineWell Grip at the rear to remove any restriction. You can’t do much “sculpturing in this area, as it is the rear attachment point for the grip. I did get the magazine to insert and release freely, but I was not about to modify my remaining 10-round and 20-round magazines to make things work as they should. Subsequently, I removed the MAKO AR MagazineWell Grip from the AR and chalked it up as a loss.
For the time being, I am back to a two-fingered hold on the magazine well while the thumb of my offhand (the right hand, in this case) holds the ejection port shield down and open. Sadly, I continue my quest for a magazine well grip, but I may just have to live without it.
The bottom line is that any attachment you so choose to attach to your favorite AR (or any firearm) should not interfere with the normal operation of the firearm. Any magazine should insert freely into the magazine well, lock into place with resolve, and slide freely from the magazine well when you push the magazine release. You should not have to force a magazine into the well or have to use force to remove it from the well. You should not have to separate magazines that work with an accessory, like with the MAKO AR MagazineWell Grip, from those that do not – they all should work and they all should work very well, I might add – your (my) life may depend upon it.
Read more about the grip @ (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004YY5NS2/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1)