AXTS Weapons Systems MI-T556 14.5” Carbine

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I had never heard of AXTS before this press release, but I am definitely intrigued by their product. I think the idea of a fully ambidextrous rifle (ready to go out of the box) is a great idea. And you get your choice of pinned muzzle device (if you are not doing it as an SBR). Does anyone here have any experience with their products? Comment below if you have.

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AXTS Weapons Systems, a leader in innovative products for the AR platform such as the Raptor ambi charging handle, is proud to introduce the MI-T556 14.5” carbine. Every component of the MI-T556 has undergone rigorous scrutiny to produce a highly attractive and advanced rifle capable of maximizing the potential of even the most skilled marksman. Engineered for performance and longevity, the MI-T556 dissipates heat at a remarkable rate while maintaining tremendous accuracy. With it’s fully ambidextrous design, the MI-T556 is a versatile and ergonomic platform for today’s advanced warfighter.

Based on the ambidextrous AX556 lower, the MI-T556 features right-side dual action bolt catch/magazine release, and right-side bolt release along with left-side magazine release in addition to the default controls present on standard AR lowers. The user- friendly ambi nature of the MI-T556 is further complimented by the inclusion of the AXTS Talon 45/90 ambi safety selector. Other standard features on the MI-T556 lower include a 3.5lb two-stage trigger, Magpul QD sling endplate, and the Magpul CTR stock installed on a Mil-Spec 7075-T6 aluminum receiver extension.

The AXTS billet upper receiver is mated to a 7075-T6 aluminum foreend—retaining unprecedented rigidity while still allowing the user to quickly and easily remove the handguard if necessary. The MI-T556 features Magpul’s M-LOK system for quick and secure mounting of any MIL-STD-1913-based accessory. Ambidextrous functionality is retained in the upper, with the inclusion of the industry-leading AXTS Raptor charging handle.

Beneath the MI-T556’s foreend is a stainless steel Shilen 416R-derived, with a proprietary AXTS barrel contour 1:8 barrel chambered in .223 Wylde. The MI-T556 will initially be released with a 14.5” barrel, guaranteed to 1⁄2 MOA*, topped off with the purchaser’s selection of factory pinned muzzle device from the following manufacturers: SureFire, AAC, Silencerco, BattleComp, and Knight’s Armament Corporation. Buyers may also send in their own muzzle device for factory pinning to 16” overall barrel length. The MI-T556’s bolt carrier is manufactured from case hardened 8620 steel with properly staked 4130 steel gas key. The accompanying bolt is case hardened 9310 steel, shot peened, HPT and MPI tested, and finished in a self-lubricating polished black nitride. Bolt lugs are CNC ground following heat treatment to insure the greatest accuracy possible. The MI-T556 is finished in low visibility AXTS Grey Cerakote and ships with one Magpul PMAG magazine.

The MI-T556 along with an SBR variant will be on display at SHOT Show booth#7061. AXTS will begin taking orders for the MI-T556 in early 2015.

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Tom is a former Navy Corpsman that spent some time bumbling around the deserts of Iraq with a Marine Recon unit, kicking in tent flaps and harassing sheep. Prior to that he was a paramedic somewhere in DFW, also doing some Executive Protection work between shifts. Now that those exciting days are behind him, he has embraced his inner “Warrior Hippie” and assaults 14er in his sandals and beard, or engages in rucking adventure challenges while consuming craft beer. To fund these adventures, he writes medical software and builds websites and mobile apps. His latest venture is as one of the founders of IronSights.com; a search engine for all things gun related. He hopes that his posts will help you find solid gear that will survive whatever you can throw at it–he is known (in certain circles) for his curse…ahem, ability…to find the breaking point of anything.


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  • Esh325

    Oh look another AR15.

    • Orion Quach

      Hey man, your totally welcome to go and invent the next big thing in small arms and make a lot of money!

      • Esh325

        Others have beat me to it already.

      • iksnilol

        The Korobov TKB-022 should make a comeback. A version with a magwell using STANAG mags and chambered in 5.56 (and a 50 cm barrel wouldn’t hurt) would probably be nice for the 5.56 lovers.

        • andrey kireev

          An extremely innovative firearm for the time it came out !
          Wish it went farther and was actually adopted. I sure hope it will be commercialized one day…

          • iksnilol

            Me too… I wonder how much it would weigh scaled up to .338 Lapua? I believe you could keep it under 1m length even if you doubled the length of the action and used a 70 cm barrel (28 inches).

          • iksnilol

            I hope so… seems like a really good design. Would be interesting to see it scaled up to .338 Lapua since even if you doubled the action length and used a 70 cm barrel (28 inches) you would still be under 1m length. Or a 7.62×39 with an integrally suppressed barrel (30cm barrel + 10 cm suppressor). The design has a good amount of potential.

  • Yellow Devil

    Never heard of them before, but I gather the “X” in AXTS stands for “Xtreme”…

  • santi

    I bought the lower when it first came out. I have to say it is the best lower I have ever owned. The design and craftsmanship is superb. I can’t stop looking at it. The A-DAC system is where it shines the most for me.

  • Adam aka eddie d.

    This looks like a serious firearm.

    AXTS has been on my radar for quite some time now thanks to their ambi lowers.
    Every review I read on them (by users, not magazines!) was positive.
    IMHO they’ve got the best ambi lower out there right now.
    The layout, size and shape of the controls are great, and it’s not tacticool/cheezy looking
    looking or excessively heavy either.
    The only thing I miss from this lower is a couple of QD mounting points à la SIG516.
    (Though they’ve included a swiveling Magpul endplate which is a nice ambi solution.)

    Like the barrel, irons, the trim, light looking handguard, ambi charging handle and the Cerakote, all quality solutions.

    It’s strange though that they don’t mention what brand the trigger is. In-house maybe?
    The QPQ (?) nitrided carrier and bolt are also a nice addition.

    All in all, they’ve put a real nice 100% ambi carbine together.

    (Well, aside from the forward assist of course, but I can’t wrap my head around why it’s even there in the first place.)
    I’m curious about the MSRP.

    • Doc Rader

      Good to hear. I’m going to make it a point to stop by their booth at SHOT.

    • echelon

      I personally use SanTan Tactical ambi lowers on all my ARs. They are also fantastic.

  • Taylor TX

    Sweet lookin rifle with some neat features, never really thought about ambi lowers but then again Im not a southpaw, curious as to what the MSRP will be. I cant help but wonder why they have that monster riser on the optic without an A2 front sight post, maybe a co-witness with some tall BUIS?

  • echelon

    Finally, a fully ambi-AR out of the box. Now – if they don’t charge POF/LWRC prices this may be good to go. If it’s much over $1k then it’s going to be too much.

    You can get a high quality keymod upper and a SanTan Tactical ambi billet lower all for ~$1k.

  • Bret Ashby

    Purchased the Rainier Arms roll marked A-DAC-F forged lower. The fit and finish is the excellent and looks to be well thought out. The bolt catch mag release is unique as well. If the same attention to detail is put into the MI-T556 it should be a top notch rifle. I am not wild about the Wylde chamber but all of the other specs look good. Hopefully the rifle will be competitively priced in a saturated market.

    • Adam aka eddie d.

      It’s probably meant as a competitor to other high-end DI carbines like the BCM Jack,

      so I guess it’ll be quite expensive.

      • Bret Ashby

        As a Knight’s and Noveske owner, I think you are correct. If AXTS stakes it’s claim in the high end there maybe some room.

  • Michael R. Zupcak

    The MIT 556? What about the Harvard 556 or the CalTech 556?

  • Sam Schifo

    The SCAR and ACR both had a good chance, but FN and Remington blew it when they didn’t release caliber change kits for them.

  • Adam aka eddie d.

    Sir, don’t want to sound lecturing , but you are in a very big misundestanding.
    Aluminium hard anodizing has far, and by this I mean [i]far[i] less abrasive resistance than Cerakote. (And since aluminium is not susceptible to corrosion, abr. res. is the only reason for treating aluminium receivers.)The latter solution will vastly outperform anodizing even without the mfr. recommended heat-cure procedure, these two are just not even in the same league.

    Cerakote, despite being a coating rather than a surface transformation/case hardening procedure is up with the big dogs of industrial surface treatment:
    Ti(Al)N, DLC, tungsten carbide, trivalent chrome etc.
    The company Sulzer Metco for instance has a nice data sheet on diamond like coatings, you can see a general comparison between the better surface treatments, if you’re interested.
    Military type III anodizing should be somewhere around 4-500 Vickers,
    whilst the abovementioned are all well above 2000 V.
    To put in simple terms, all of them are at least 4-5 times as resistant to wear than anodizing, Cerakote is probably somewhere in the lower-middle segment of the top surface treatments regarding hardness.
    The advantage of Cerakote in regards of firearms is that it can be applied without (significant, or any) heat input to the part, so it can even be used for polymers and applied to non-ferrous materiel, like AR receivers.

    In a nutshell, you can anodize before the Cerakote, but why would you do that.
    It’s just an additional, unnecessary step that costs money and wouldn’t give you any gain.

    • iksnilol

      I have a question: Is Cerakote better than Duracoat? What is the difference between the two?

  • Adam aka eddie d.

    That is a valid point Sir!
    CMMG had its Revo concept a few years back, it featured a convertible side panel upper that could be set up for either left or right side ejection,
    but that’s about all I can remember when it comes to ARs.
    Ambidextrous ejection would need a whole new platform, like the Beretta ARX,
    the Polish MSBS (if memory serves well), or the Tavor as a more or less ready to go ambi gun.