The AR-15 has become one of the most popular rifles in America due to its versatility, accuracy, and ease of use. One of the customizable options for this rifle is the choice of furniture. The traditional materials used for the furniture of the AR-15 are synthetic polymers, but many gun enthusiasts opt for wooden furniture due to its unique aesthetic and practical advantages. In this article, we will explore the AR-15 wooden furniture, its history, benefits, and why it might be the right choice for you.
1. What is AR-15 Wooden Furniture?
The wooden furniture of the AR-15 is the set of components that include the handguard, stock, and grip made from wood. The wood can be of various types such as walnut, maple, oak, or birch. Wooden furniture has been around since the inception of the AR-15 in the 1960s, and it was the primary material used before synthetic polymers became prevalent.
2. History of AR-15 Wooden Furniture
The AR-15 was initially designed with wooden furniture. It wasn’t until the late 1950s when Eugene Stoner and his team started experimenting with synthetic polymers, which led to the development of the first synthetic handguard in the early 1960s. Since then, synthetic polymers have been the go-to material for the AR-15 furniture due to its durability, lightweight, and low cost. However, wooden furniture has remained a popular option due to its unique aesthetic and practical benefits.
3. Advantages of AR-15 Wooden Furniture
One of the main reasons why gun enthusiasts prefer wooden furniture for their AR-15 is the unique and classic look it provides. Wooden furniture gives the AR-15 a traditional and rustic feel, which some gun owners find appealing. The natural grains, patterns, and colors of the wood provide a level of customization and uniqueness that cannot be achieved with synthetic polymers.
Wooden furniture, when correctly treated and maintained, can last as long as synthetic polymers. It is important to note that not all types of wood are suitable for AR-15 wooden furniture. Dense and hard woods such as walnut, maple, or oak are preferred due to their ability to withstand the impact of recoil and resist moisture and heat.
c. Grip and Comfort
The texture and grip of wooden furniture are often preferred over synthetic polymers due to its warm and natural feel. The texture of the wood provides a better grip and comfort when holding the rifle, making it more stable and easier to aim.
d. Temperature Regulation
Wooden furniture can also help regulate the temperature of the rifle. Unlike synthetic polymers, which can become hot and uncomfortable to hold during extended use, wooden furniture can absorb and dissipate heat, keeping the rifle cooler and more comfortable to hold.
4. Disadvantages of AR-15 Wooden Furniture
One of the main disadvantages of wooden furniture is its weight. Wood is denser and heavier than synthetic polymers, which can make the rifle feel heavier and less maneuverable. However, this can be mitigated by selecting lighter types of wood such as birch or by only using wooden furniture for specific parts of the rifle.
Wooden furniture can be more expensive than synthetic polymers due to the cost of the raw material and the additional labor required to manufacture and treat it. However, the unique look and feel of wooden furniture can be worth the additional cost for some gun enthusiasts.
5. Maintaining AR-15 Wooden Furniture
Wooden furniture requires proper maintenance to ensure it lasts as long as synthetic polymers. To maintain the wood, it is essential to keep it clean and dry. Moisture can cause the wood to warp, crack, and decay over time. After using the rifle, wipe down the wooden furniture with a dry cloth to remove any moisture or dirt. It is also recommended to periodically apply a wood conditioner or oil to keep the wood moisturized and prevent it from drying out.
6. How to Install AR-15 Wooden Furniture
Installing wooden furniture on an AR-15 is a straightforward process that can be done with basic tools. First, remove the existing synthetic polymer furniture by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Next, install the wooden handguard, stock, and grip by aligning the mounting holes and tightening the screws or pins. It is important to ensure that the wooden furniture is securely fastened to the rifle and does not interfere with the function of the rifle.
The wooden furniture of the AR-15 is a unique and practical option for gun enthusiasts who appreciate the traditional and classic look of wood. It offers advantages such as aesthetics, durability, grip and comfort, and temperature regulation. Although wooden furniture can be more expensive and heavier than synthetic polymers, it can be a worthwhile investment for those who prioritize aesthetics and functionality. Proper care and maintenance can ensure that the wooden furniture lasts for years to come and enhances the shooting experience. If you’re looking to customize your AR-15 wooden furniture, do your research and choose high-quality materials and reputable manufacturers.