We don’t like to give bad reviews to any product or company here at The Firearm Blog, but if we do not believe that something is up to snuff, we will make sure that our readers know that. Our own Phil White said it best to me in an email:
“I like to see people succeed, and I take no joy in seeing a company go under or turn out a terrible product.”
Amen to that too. Almost every time we have spoken negatively about a product, the manufacturer will bitterly ignore our feedback and keep on doing what they do. However, here we have an exception. At the NRA show in 2013, our own Andrew Tuohy published an article about the Texas outfit Battle Rifle Company and laid out a list of criteria that he believed made these products shoddy. Andrew’s observations were forward, honest, and to the point but after he published the article something amazing happened: The company listened.
Rather than ignore the criticism, Chris Kurzadkowski the owner of Battle Rifle Company used it to improve his products. Also instead of trying to pass the blame onto others, Chris owned up to what he perceived were errors. He admits that they rushed things to get to that NRA show and that his biggest concern now is that he wants to make sure that consumers know the new, the real Battle Rifle Company. To ensure that this would happen, Chris contacted us and asked if one of us writers would be willing to come down one day to tour his facility. Being as how I was the closest, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to go. Chris was overly accommodating, offering to pay for my hotel, travel expenses, meals, and more but I told him that all of that would be unnecessary.
I arrived at Battle Rifle Company on April 30th. The photo above is a picture of Chris, Noah, and Chris’ son Nick. Their facility is located in Houston and they really rolled out the red carpet for me to showcase their wares and talent. Chris’ background includes military service from 1974 to 1994. He was commissioned in 1984 and was at on point attached as a sniper to a ranger battalion. He even was on tower watch duty on the Korean DMZ for a period of time, so he is no stranger to firearms. Battle Rifle Company grew out from Chris building a gun for his stepson to utilize in SWAT school (his stepson is in law enforcement) and he enjoyed it so much that he acquired an FFL in 2011 where he was garage based for a few years. Now Chris has kicked it into top gear and Battle Rifle Company now has over 1,000 rifles on the market!
The facility doubles as a pro shop where customers can pick and choose whatever they would like:
Of course what they wanted to showcase was their assembly area and process, which was an AR15 fan’s dream:
The guys are also reloading gurus, and are definitely helping keep Dillon in business:
They are now beginning to make their own components too, including a flash hider that suppresses 98% of all flash.
All aluminum components are now made with 7075-T6 aluminum, rather than the cheaper 6061, and receivers are done by Cerro Forge:
All BCGs are now properly staked, MPI tested, and full auto ready:
Barrels are all chrome lined, cryogenically treated, pre-phosphated before gas block goes on, and sourced from Black Hole Weaponry. Rails used are mostly from Odin Works, buffer springs are silicon coated, extractors have springs and doughnuts, front sight bases are “F” marked, gas blocks are staked/taper pin is blocked, and anodizing all parts is hard coat MIL-A-8625F.
Now I was really in for a treat when I arrived, as the guys said they would build a rifle from the ground up from parts of my choosing. I thumbed through their catalog selecting what I wanted and Noah got to work puling parts:
We mocked the rifle up in the lobby before getting to work, just like a customer might if he wandered into the shop:
Now normally one man would build one rifle, but as we were strained for time Nick built out the lower while Noah assembled the upper:
One of the things that jumped out to me is how Noah lapped the upper receiver to make sure that the barrel was optimally seated. The guys have invented a unique tool (that I have been sworn to secrecy on) that laps the upper. Here is the before:
Nick also polished up a nickel boron trigger to install:
The gun came together very nicely and it was fun to watch the guys doing their thing:
All in all I was happy to hold the finished product:
As a special treat, the guys arranged for me to test some of their stuff in their indoor testing range (which is a cool place in it of itself):
I was more than happy to test out the freshly built rifle and other builds. Noah shot a few first:
But then it was my turn:
All in all I liked the way everything shot, especially the 7.62×51 rifle.
After the smoke cleared I was surprised with some Battle Rifle Company swag and made an honorary member of the team for the day:
I had a great day at Battle Rifle Company, and it was neat to see how this three man operation cares about every rifle they assemble. Again I would like to emphasize how they actually responded to our criticism and went so far as to take a risk to invite me down for all of this, as I could have just as easily made their PR situation worse had they not moved forward and adapted. It is important to these men that consumers know that they care deeply about the products they put out, and that all rifles are built with love. If you are interested in seeing more about Battle Rifle Company, check on some of these links for product videos and testimonials, as well as a sampling of products:
Thank you for reading, and keep an eye out for some exciting new products from Battle Rifle Company!Related