Today, SilencerCo launched a new product that is the first of its type – a gas-defeating charging handle (GDCH). This handy-dandy contraption will block gases expelled during operation of an AR rifle or pistol. If you’ve ever shot an AR for an extended period of time, you know about this little problem – especially if you’ve attached a suppressor to the muzzle of your AR pistol. You can’t shoot well when you immediately get blasted in the face by powder gas and bits of unburned powder when you pull the trigger, and your eyes are watering severely between shots. Enter the new GDCH, built to help you enjoy your shooting more.
Sponsored by SilencerCo
The GDCH is made of Billet 7075 aluminum, and finished with Type III hard coat anodization. It comes in a bilateral design and with a limited lifetime warranty. The key to its ability to keep burned gunpowder byproducts out of your face is an elastomeric gasket on its underside that seals against the upper receiver of an AR design. According to SilencerCo, when the gasket wears out, the user can replace it by making a cut in the correct size O-ring and swapping it for the old gasket.
I took the GDCH out to my range for some testing, and grabbed “four” ARs – one rifle in 5.56 x 45 and one in .300 AAC Blackout, and one pistol lower with two pistol uppers to swap out, in 5.56 and 300 AAC Blackout calibers. I invited the hubs (former RAF rifle team commander) and my son-in-law, a former infantry officer and Afghanistan veteran, along. For our testing purposes, we also used two SilencerCo suppressors – a direct-mount Omega 300 with the .300 caliber guns, and a Saker 556 ASR on the 5.56 arms. Based on experience, I figured the pistols would be the worst offenders when it came to spitting gas and carbon bits in our faces. I knew that shooting them suppressed would make this even worse, so I figured the suppressed pistols would be the toughest customers for the GDCH. In addition, the son-in-law is a leftie, so there’s that to figure when it comes to shooting AR-type arms. He said he always get a face full of gas from the charging handle area as well as from the ejection port.
The GDCH successfully kept the debris out of the faces of we two right-handers. My son-in-law reckoned the only debris that hit him in the face came from the ejection ports of the ARs, and not from the charging handle.
I’m delighted that SilencerCo thought enough about its customers that it designed this innovative device. At $114.00, it should be affordable and well worth the price for its purpose.
Order one here.