Bad A** or Billet Aluminum? Cobalt Kinetics B.A.M.F. Edge is both…

Cobalt Laser Etched Logo

I originally met with the Cobalt Kinetics group at SHOT Show Range Day where they had a small booth. The product they were promoting was their flagship concept; an AR-15 with a dual bolt drop system (presented as a functioning forward assist). This is arguably one of the most innovative functional and structural component changes to the original design of the platform.

About two months ago we, TFB, published a press release detailing that the Cobalt Kinetics B.A.M.F. was available for pre-order ahead of their June release, and we had some entertaining discussion in the comments.

TFB was contacted by Cobalt Kinetics (around March) to see if we would be willing to send a writer out to review their B.A.M.F. ahead of the release. I was asked to go since I was the original contact with them at SHOT and I was definitely interested to get some hands on time with the rifle (since Cobalt Kinetics’ booth at Range Day was not on a live berm). Cobalt Kinetics ended up canceling the original shoot as they had discovered a manufacturing problem after putting something north of twenty-thousand rounds through the gun (along with some other abusive tests). They reconnected with me a few weeks ago and let me know that the problems were all resolved, and wanted to know if I would still be interested to come out to play (for “reals” this time). I would like to point out that they could have went ahead with the original plan (bringing us out to review the B.A.M.F.), and just not said anything about the defect they encountered (after heavy use), and then quietly fixed it, no one the wiser. That definitely shows a great deal of integrity and professionalism in my book.

So, the second day of summer, I drove from New Mexico to Nevada to demo their rifle. Terrible time of year and location to blow through a case of someone else’s ammo, but I am willing to do that for you readers.

Full Disclosure: Cobalt Kinetics paid my expenses to come review the B.A.M.F. at the Pro Gun Club in Nevada

This is the first event where a vendor brought me out specifically to shoot the rifle. I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. I also wasn’t sure if it was just going to be a “horse and pony” show.

After I got in, I met up with Jeremy Lamb, Cobalt Kinetic’s Director of Sales and Marketing, to discuss the plan. As a former Law Enforcement and SWAT Officer, he was definitely not what I envisioned I was going to meet up with, having known a number of salespeople.

I was upfront with Jeremy that I would review the rifle how I would review any rifle. I wasn’t going to give a positive review simply because I had been brought out. I think that is unethical and ultimately it hurts the reputation of this publication (and that kind of thing is really easy for readers to see through). He understood and agreed with the stipulation, stating that the rifle should speak for itself. He also expressed his personal concerns about publications that do reviews for advertising dollars (in a “pay to play” fashion).

Part of the reason they brought me out (rather than send me the rifle to review at my leisure) was due to the turn around time and their stock on hand. Since they are getting ready to ship their first run, and pretty much all of the first production run units are spoken for, they just don’t have dozens of rifles laying around to loan out for a couple of months. An added benefit to me was that I could ask a bunch of questions about the platform and manufacturing, as well as the company itself. And the best benefit is, that, during the course of fire, Jeremy kept all of my magazines topped off… 🙂

Construction

BAMF Edge and Older Brother, View 2

Cobalt Kinetics B.A.M.F. (black) and B.A.M.F. Edge (slate)

The model that I reviewed, the ”Edge”, has a fixed machined stock. Which could be off-putting to some. It seems that pretty much all ARs have adjustable stocks, and that is the new norm. And I have to say, at first, I was a little put off and confused by it. Then, after firing a couple hundred rounds through it, I found that I didn’t notice the lack of adjustment, it seemed like it fit me well. Cobalt Kinetics does have a model which has a Hogue collapsible stock (the plain B.A.M.F.).

BAMF Machined Butt Stock

Non-adjustable stock

The machined stock will not accept a quick disconnect (as most stocks currently available do). Jeremy indicated that there are plans to add a quick disconnect in the future. As it was, there was plenty of space to thread webbing for a sling.

Forward hand guard and  rails.

Forward hand guard and rails.

As you can see the lines of the weapon are cut very aggressively, with many of the forward components coming to a sharp point (one of the comments on the earlier post compared it to Saruman’s staff in Lord of the Rings). This gives the weapon a very distinctive look and not something you’re going to see on many, if any, other ARs out there—I certainly haven’t encountered one yet. Regarding their color choices, they picked them based on some surveys of both shooters and dealers. Jeremy joked with me that they do not have any plans to make a black version of the rifle but if they did it’s initials would be J.A.F.C. (Just Another “Funny” Carbine; I could be remembering the “Funny” part of the acronym incorrectly).

Inside of BAMF Showing Drop Mechanism

You can see the pin on the left side which is part of the actuator for the bolt drop

The machining tolerances are well executed and tight. You can shake the weapon and not hear any rattling or anything that sounds loose.

The charging handle operates smooth as butter. There was very little sound that came from it, even with nothing more but a very thin coat of lubrication (I’m used to some metal on metal noise).

When you drop the bolt, it goes home with the satisfying clunk and no other noise or vibration.

Muzzle Device.  Not really a compensator nor flash hider.  Just a component that follows the lines and theme.

Muzzle Device. Not really a compensator nor flash hider. Just a component that follows the lines and theme.

Regarding the sharp points on both the muzzle device in the forward section of the hand guard, Jeremy mentioned that they are likely going to do a less aggressive cut or dull them down to reduce the likelihood that the sharp points would catch on a collection box or bucket for rifles during competition.

Clean beveling and machining.

Clean beveling and machining. (and I do like the Odin Works mod)

Whenever you see a company focusing what appears to be an enormous amount of time on what would seemingly be an unimportant detail, it should make you ask the following questions, “Are they putting efforts in the wrong place? Are they trying to draw your attention away from something else? Or is their attention to detail so high that every component is going to receive the same level of scrutiny?”. Just like with RISE Armaments trigger color choice (and the number of iterations they went through to perfect it), I think Cobalt Kinetics is in the “perfectionist” category. They have beveled edges and cutout the trigger well. They created a custom muzzle device that matches the styling of the fore end of the hand guard. They have also done an admirable job of integrating their machined components with components from other vendors (like the trigger).

Ejected round deflector (for those left handed shooters)

Ejected round deflector (for those left handed shooters)

Some of the decisions they made were based around providing a quality product while keeping prices down. Of course they could’ve put in a Timney trigger on the rifle (it is KE Arms DPM). Of course they could’ve put a Voodoo barrel on the rifle. But you would be paying significantly more for the rifle. And honestly if I hadn’t been told, I would have assumed that every component was internally created. Down the line, they may well offer a version with some of the higher grade components. I would imagine that will be based on interest, or, more likely, as a specialized/custom build.

Cobalt Laser Etched Logo

Note the ambidextrous magazine drop.  Cobalt Kinetics has really made a concerted effort to address left handed shooters.

Jeremy stated that their big focus is to ensure that all of their components are American-made; from what they machine in-house to the components that they outsource. He even related a story that they actually changed out a planned component once they found out that a vendor had certain parts of it made overseas (though it was “designed” in the U.S.). To me, along with their initial recalls before they even released the product, demonstrates their level of integrity and commitment to their principles. Sure they could’ve used those components that they had already purchased, but they decided to ensure that everything they put into their offering follows their criteria.

Specifications

  • Caliber: .223 Wylde
  • Ambidextrous Controls: Charging Handle, Dual Drop Bolt Release, 45-Degree Safety Selector, Mag Release (Odin on right side), Threaded Pins
  • Upper and Lower Receiver: Custom Mated Upper and Lower Precision Machined from 7075 Billet-Aluminum, Beveled Mag Well, Detachable Trigger Guard
  • BCG: Nickel Boron
  • Barrel Length: 16” Chrome Lined or 18” Stainless Steel
  • Hand Guard: Free Floating Precision Machined 7075 Billet Aluminum with M-Lok
  • Sights: Flip-up Front and Rear
  • Muzzle Device: Cobalt Compensator
  • Grip: Hogue Over-molded Grip
  • Tigger: High Performance Trigger
  • Butt-Stock: Cobalt Kinetics Rifle Stock
  • Gas System: Mid-Length Adjustable Low-Profile Block

Shooting the B.A.M.F.

Quick and easy sight in for a short distance shoot.

Quick and easy sight in for a short distance shoot.

Our first order of business was to swap the scope from the OD Rifle to the new Edge. This of course, required a quick BZO so that it wouldn’t be too frustrating. I used one of the easy short range “zeroing” techniques to get close enough. Not perfect by any means, but good enough for the shoot (which was going to be mainly at thirty to forty meters.

Left side "DD" Dual Drop Button

Left side “DD” Dual Drop Button

The first time I loaded a magazine I forgot that the primary new feature of this weapon is the “DD” (Dual Drop). I ended up using the standard bolt release, and I think that was something we can chalk up to muscle memory and years of handling the weapon in that way. My next magazine however I remembered to use the “DD” bolt drop. It did take a little more pressure than I initially thought it would, but I don’t think that that is a detraction in any way—after the third use I no longer noticed it.

Note the 45 degree selector.

Note the 45 degree selector.

Another interesting feature to note is the fire selector switch engages at forty-five degrees rather than a more traditional ninety. Again because I was unfamiliar and not used to this mechanic, it caused me to look down to make sure that I was in the fire position. At the end of the day, this illustrates that you need to be familiar with the weapon that you are shooting. I have no doubt through appropriate dry fire practice and range drills the manipulation of the controls on the B.A.M.F. would become second nature. Yes, yes, I know that building a procedural memory for the operation of the B.A.M.F. may slow you down when you have to pick up that “lesser” AR during the Zombie Apocalypse, but I’m pretty sure you will be fine… 🙂

Contouring of mag well.

Contouring of mag well.

While I didn’t keep a strict count, we figured that I shot a total of about 800 rounds of 55 grain remanufactured brass ammunition that Jeremy had brought with him (from Western Arms and Ammo; which happens to share a parking lot with Cobalt Kinetics). I personally brought 60 rounds of 55 grain steel Wolf ammo and 10 rounds of 75 grain Hornady Boat Tail Hollow Point. The rifle shot very consistently and had no problems feeding any of the rounds. As you would expect, the match grade ammunition resulted in a tighter group and performed much more consistently. It was also interesting to note that the point of impact was higher and to the left (given the same point of aim), again illustrating that it is important for you to know how the ammo you feed shoots in your weapon.

The barrel is sub MOA and the B.A.M.F. will produce sub MOA groups all day long at 100 yds. It does have an adjustable gas system and is tuned for optimal performance.

[EDIT:  Above quote added from comments by Cobalt Kinetics.  My oversight on leaving off details about the barrel and gas system]

About 35 meters away.  Corresponds to the above video.

About 35 meters away. Corresponds to the above video.  (First few slow shots were on another target–this is from the rapid fire)

Aimed Position from a rest at 35 meters.  Hornady 75gr.  Corresponds to the video above.

Aimed Position from a barrel rest at 35 meters. Hornady 75gr. Corresponds to the video above.

Most of the magazines I ran the B.A.M.F. with

Most of the magazines I ran the B.A.M.F. with

I borrowed a bunch of different magazines from Tom Gomez (the other New Mexico writer), as well as bringing some of my own, to see how the rifle handled that. We (and by “we”, I mean Jeremy) loaded a handful of rounds in each of the magazines. The set of magazines (pictured below) included: 30 round P-Mag, 20 round P-Mag, 30 round USGI Mag with Green Follower, 30 round USGI Mag with Tan Follower, a couple of Troy mags, a 20 round Wilson, and a MSAR. Jeremy had brought a couple of Lancer magazines. I had one failure to pick up a round from the full size P-Mag (stuffed with 30 rounds). I also had the Wilson 20 round magazine fail to seat in the magazine well (when fully loaded). [EDIT: the Wilson ran fine after removing the top round, the PMag did not duplicate the problem]

Unfired rifle in shade

Unfired rifle in shade

B.A.M.F. Edge after firing

B.A.M.F. Edge after firing

We measured the temperature of the unfired rifle sitting in the shade and it was a balmy 107°F (41.67°C). The B.A.M.F., right after shooting, was measured at 139°F (59.44°C). I did find that after the first ten full magazines (I’d guess around three hundred rounds), the B.A.M.F. was too uncomfortable to hold at the forward hand guard (in a “C” grip) without aid of a glove. In comparison my Primary Weapons Systems Modern Musket, I can generally go through five hundred rounds before it becomes too uncomfortable to hold. Not exactly a scientific test, and I’m sure some of that was due to the fact that there was no place to cool down the rifle (and I was probably going through rounds a little more quickly so we didn’t experience heat stroke out on the range). The heat dissipation makes sense to me as the hand guard on the B.A.M.F. is pretty light weight and doesn’t have the same amount of attached rails as does the Modern Musket (i.e. not the same amount of material to operate as a heat-sink). My guess is that there would be more heat dissipation with more accessories bolted on to the M-LOK rails. That or use a different grip (“But, Tom, ‘C’ grip is soooooo tactical”, you say).

Trigger Weight

Trigger Weight

The installed trigger is the KE Arms DMR.  The trigger pull was a consistent 4.7 pounds as measured by my Lyman trigger puller with a variance of around a half a pound. This is consistent with the specs on the trigger. I found the reset of the trigger to be very crisp and it had very little travel.

The rifle was very easy to index and shift between targets. It weighs a hair over seven pounds, so it is right in the same weight range as a number of other ARs. I didn’t really feel any discomfort while shooting it (aside from the heat dissipation to my hand).

The End

Overall I found the rifle to be a pleasure to shoot and, if I had the cash available, would be adding one to my collection. Again at the price point (~$3000), this is not a budget grade rifle. A number of you pointed this out (multiple times) in the pre-release post. This rifle is definitely poised to enter the competition space, or to be an distinctive piece for your collection.

The Cobalt Kinetics B.A.M.F. presents itself just as it was manufactured to be. This is not “just like” all of the other ARs out there. It is a well-designed, high-end AR (i.e. if you want a budget beater, this is probably not the rifle for you). Aside from the patented mechanical innovation which is what piqued my original interest at SHOT, the pure design aesthetics are amazing, from the cleanly beveled edges to the clean laser-cut markings. The B.A.M.F. Edge maintains an aggressive look while retaining ergonomic modifications that are subtle and, most definitely, functional.

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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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  • El Duderino

    Trigger. Barrel. Optic. Everything else is just window dressing and personal preference. I applaud their efforts but I’ll stick with my “sleepers”.

    I did read the whole article, but I’m still not clear as to why the rifle has 2 FAs, especially when modern rifles in good condition firing quality ammo don’t even need 1. The writer mentions it in passing but not WHY.

    • Doc Rader

      It is the “DD” (Dual Drop)). You can drop the bolt with it. Which is the biggy thing about the rifle. Also mentioned in the caption on one of the photos.

      • marathag

        But why have two of them? Why keep the stock FA?

        • Doc Rader

          Ambidexterity. This rifle is well setup to accommodate both right and left handed shooters.

          • marathag

            Just not getting on why putting this on every rifle though, and not just have a ‘real’ left hand model like the Rock River.

            I understand why some ambi controls are there, but not the FA, that gets such little use.

          • Scott_VIP

            The primary function of the FA’s are not to assist the bcg Ito battery, it is to drop the bolt from a locked open position. It is very similar to dropping the slide on a handgun.

          • marathag

            So why both, ambi bolt catch, and FA?

            Just not getting it, all that duplication of controls

          • Cobalt Kinetics

            We want to see mag changes get below the one second mark. Since the FA is a bolt release, you can actually drop the bolt with your thumb and pull the trigger nearly simultaneously with out disturbing your sight picture. We have a few videos on our facebook page showing the DD in action.

          • marathag

            That makes sense now

          • seando

            Without handling one I cannot speak to the claim of faster reloads, but I admire the fact that you are trying to improve upon a design most have merely copied. It is slight changes like this that create options for some and perhaps a better working design for all. There may be some who disagree with these small changes at first or do not see the value, but what would those same people say about the mid-length gas system or the picatinnay rail or the adjustable gas block or the…
            And to the point of not handling one, I do not need to fondle one to know that tapping all the holes in the lower and going away from roll pins is an improvement! One that might just catch on with some other manufacturers.
            And, by the way, that is one B.A. looking AR!

          • Cobalt Kinetics

            Seando,

            Thank you sir for the kind words. We believe there is a lot of room for improvements across a wide range of platforms. We know when you change something people are use to it takes a little while to catch on. We can assure you once people get their hands on one the value speaks for itself.

            The DD is faster for mag changes and charging the gun from a locked back position. We have some video in the works to demonstrate it.

          • El Duderino

            You guys need to get your hands on my old USMC issue M16A2. Slam a magazine home hard enough and it would send the bolt forward. Not exactly the safest system but hey, it worked 🙂

          • Cobalt Kinetics

            Nothing wrong with that, adapt and overcome right?

          • Bill

            Plenty of ARs will do that, whether you want them to or not 😉

          • El Duderino

            Oh I know. Worn bolt catch is a feature, not a problem…

          • CommonSense23

            Considering the AR is plenty lefty friendly to begin with. Is it really that much faster to use the FA for a mag change?

        • MR

          Muscle memory (IDK)

  • Budogunner

    Am honest, thorough, and we’ll documented review. This is the kind of content that keeps me coming back to TFB.

  • Tyler McCommon

    $3k? I think I’ll stick with my $700 AR-15……

    • MAUSERMAN

      $700!!! I will stick to my $450 ar15 🙂

      • Tyler McCommon

        Well mine $700 with everything I put on it but the base rifle was $500.

        • MAUSERMAN

          Actually my base rifle was $350.

          • seando

            Why do all the haters reference only the price and use that as the sole reason to dismiss something new? Guarenteed, that if this works and sells to those that don’t use money as the only qualifier, these mods will trickle down to the $50 stripped lower crowd.
            Great work, awesome design and the moxie to pull it off! We need more of this innovation and creativity to break away from the past. The AR must evolve or it will be left behind. History has spoken before and will again.

          • Bill

            Can’t afford it and it wouldn’t really fit what I need a rifle to do, but I’d still take one. Sort of like a Corvette.

          • seando

            I can respect that. We all have our personal limits, needs and taste; otherwise there would be only one firearm that we would make work.

          • MAUSERMAN

            We are not hating. It simply does not do anything that a standard ar15 wouldn’t do.

    • J-

      If it costs more than the down payment on a new truck and looks like something that I expect a bad guy to wield in a JJ Abrams re-boot, I would expect it to group a little better than that. My $900 Rock River with the heavy stainless barrel will put 5 shots of Black Hills reman 68 grain match into a group that fits inside a 1 inch orange target dot.

      • Doc Rader

        Chalk that up to my crappy shooting. I was posting off a 55 gal barrel, while on one knee on effing hot rocks on the range. With a proper rest and slow timed shots I’d be willing to bet money it would result in a tighter group.

        • Andrew

          So you shot all 800 rounds fast and from a “crappy” position on one knee? During all those 800 shots, you couldn’t prone out and take your time on a few? Ok.

          • Doc Rader

            Nope. Back home I have access to a proper rest and a zero-wind tunnel. Most of the shots were from standing. Some sets were shot slower.

            Out there it was 107 in the shade (the small canopy we had). I just didn’t feel like plopping down on the rocks and brass that were baking in the sun. Heck, even the cameras were only running for about 5 minutes without over heating and shutting down.

            It shot plenty good in my book and Cobalt Kinetics has some video demonstrating the precision I believe.

    • Bob

      +6 Hi-Point carbines and a boat load of ammo.

  • Lance

    A bit too expensive! I can think of better precision rifles instead of a AR for $3000+ dollars.

  • Plumbiphilious

    I would honestly buy an overpriced lower and/or upper from them if they offered it as a standalone.

  • sliversimpson

    I know that the product name is just personal preference, but that alone is a put off for me.

    The rifle looks really well-machined and your review brought up dozens of thoughtful points, but based on price and appearance I think this rifle is targeted for a very niché market.

    Hopefully hey will fix the magazine catch tolerances and the smoothness of the dual bolt drop thingy.

    • Doc Rader

      The DD was just heavier than I anticipated.

      As far as the mag catch–it *was* a crappy beat up Wilson mag. On a rifle of this level, I’d probably only run high end mags. And carefully lay down a chamois to rest the rifle on… 🙂

  • thedonn007

    The triggerguard should be built in. The roll pins and roll pin holes ruin the look of the rifle.

    • Cobalt Kinetics

      We actually really appreciate input like this and will keep it in mind as we move forward. We did actually threaded these pins instead of using roll pins, so it’s quick and easy to change if you wanted to.

      • Flounder

        This is a beautifully made rifle. And I absolutely love to see some inovation happen to an aging platform like this. It is properly ambidextrous from the factory and on a level I have only seen from LWRC.

        Yet the lack of a match grade barrel is very troubling. I suspect the barrel is of good to decent quality but on a 3000 dollar rifle I expect more that good quality. Especially considering the rest of the rifle from the rail to the ambidextrous nature to the excellent manufacture of the upper and lower recievers. I feel as though you have made a masterpiece then put a turd on the inside.

        Also Why no monolithic top rail?

        I am comparing this directly to the LWRC I would like to buy and it competes favorably but I still find it to be slightly lesser and more expensive.

        But to leave on a positive note I think you have an excellent rifle but a few pieces are truly special. (the recievers) Hopefully your rifles sell very well and you add many models to your line up!

        • Cobalt Kinetics

          Thank you so much for your kind words, we of course love our rifle and enjoy hearing about them.

          Our barrels are sub MOA, we won’t use a barrel that doesn’t have that guarantee. We test our guns vigorously to insure your getting a gun you can shoot quickly and accurately. Our guns are crafted with precision in mind and you will have no problem shooting groups inside and inch.

          We currently have a few competitive shooters using the B.A.M.F. in matches with targets out to 500 yds.’ and they have had no problems connecting near or far, one shooter won his division last weekend in a 3 gun nation affiliate match.

          The B.A.M.F. is a very accurate rifle and we have a few videos in the works to demonstrate the rifles performance.

          • CommonSense23

            Whats the twist rate on the barrels.

          • Cobalt Kinetics

            1/8 twist

  • Mister Thomas

    That is one sexy beast. No other way to say it.

    • Cobalt Kinetics

      Thank you Sir!

    • Michel_T

      Yup! And all made in the USA…

      Wish they had tested it at longer range, shooting a rifle at 30-40 yards is a bit li,e testing a sport car in a parking lot…

      • Cobalt Kinetics

        We have done some long range shooting with it. One of our first customers actually just send us some pics and video from 200 yds to 600 yds, the results are incredible. Sub MOA at 200 and great grouping at 600.

  • Hail Mohammed

    File->While.

    • Doc Rader

      Good catch. Corrected.

  • TheSmellofNapalm

    Reminds me heavily of the NGA X7. Similar price point, similar custom work, similar claims. It was being toted as the next big thing in AR ingenuity and was even reviewed here as well. Proprietary parts, magical coatings, pleasing aesthetics. NGA went bankrupt shortly after release. I’d hate to say it but I predict a similar future for this company. Cool-looking gun, though.

    • Oleg Volk

      NGA didn’t bother producing guns. They just liked to design. Cobalt is actually making them.

  • Anonymoose

    SPAAAAAAAAAAAACE!

  • Dan

    I’m currently a machining student, heaviily involved in solid works and CNC. Looking at this rifle makes my head hurt, as I know whomever did this design put a ton of time into it. A TON. Nice work, I can’t wait to see you guys try your hand at a totally new design.

    • Adam aka eddie d.

      Word man, this gun is industrial pornography.
      I could sit down in front of it and just watch the details for an hour, appreciating
      the shapes, the work that went into the design, the quality…
      Must have been hell designing it.

  • CJR

    “This rifle is definitely poised to enter the competition space…”

    If you’re going to say things like this, you really should have an actual competitive shooter check your work. The B.A.M.F. is an interesting bit of machining, but it’s not in any way a serious competition rifle.

    • Doc Rader

      So, in *your* opinion, why is this rifle not suitable for “serious” competition? i.e. What do you think makes a rifle fit that category? What would this rifle need to make it fit your criteria?

      In *my* opinion, the ability to reduce the time of weapon manipulations (while also maintaining sight picture) is a plus for competition (knowing that the hardware itself is only part of the equation). So is the precision of machining to tighter tolerances to reduce “slop” in the system overall. I would think reliability and consistency would be on the top of most competitor’s criteria.

      And I also suppose it depends on what kind of competition…

      • CJR

        Fair questions. First of all, I assumed that you were talking about 3-gun or practical rifle competition. I probably don’t have to explain why the B.A.M.F. is not a suitable cross-course match rifle or benchrest rig.

        The B.A.M.F. is not a serious 3-gun rifle because it is all style, no substance. All of the extra machine work on the receiver, stock, and foreend certainly looks cool, but I don’t see anything that adds to the shootability of the rifle. The extra forward assist is a gimmick – it’s not going to significantly help your reload speed, and even if it did, empty reloads are quite rare in 3-gun. Precision machining/reduced “slop” is only useful if it pays dividends in accuracy and/or reliability, and the review didn’t paint the B.A.M.F. as being particularly accurate (2″ groups at 35 yards from a rest with match ammo) or particularly reliable (two malfunctions in ~900 rounds). The muzzle brake is not nearly as effective as many competing designs. The trigger is a penny-pinching expedient – on a $3000 rifle, I expect a match trigger from a top shelf manufacturer.

        In my opinion, an ideal, dedicated 3-gun competition rifle needs bombproof reliability, a floated barrel capable of consistent sub-MOA accuracy, an effective muzzle brake/gas system producing minimal recoil/muzzle lift, a ~3# single-stage trigger, and (ideally) a stock adjustable for cheek rise and length of pull. In that order. Everything else is superfluous. The B.A.M.F. doesn’t have any of these features. There are far less expensive rifles that have most or all of them.

        I should say that there’s nothing about the B.A.M.F. that would prohibit it in 3-gun competition. You certainly could shoot it, if it was all you had handy. However, to buy one of these rifles for the purpose of competing in 3-gun or practical rifle events? You’d have to be out of your gourd. In order to be a serious player in the 3-gun field, the B.A.M.F. would need a better barrel, better trigger, more effective muzzle brake, and a much cheaper price tag.

        • Cobalt Kinetics

          Sorry you feel the B.A.M.F. wouldn’t meet your standards. We are aware the rifle isn’t for everyone. Not looking to argue just want to clear a couple things you mentioned up.

          The barrel is sub MOA and the B.A.M.F. will produce sub MOA groups all day long at 100 yds. It does have an adjustable gas system and is tuned for optimal performance. The KE Arms trigger is a fantastic adjustable trigger. There was no malfunctions of the gun during the review. It simply didn’t pull the top round off of the 2 cheap magazines, when they where loaded to full capacity. With 1 less round they worked great.

          We agree with the need for an adjustable stock for rise and pull and it is currently in the works.

          As for the “gimmick” we consulted with highly respected 3 gun shooters and let them fiddle with it. They immediately were able to see the advantage and with in 5 minutes where near a one second reload. Not every 3 gun match requires reload, but some do and those extra hundredths of seconds can be the difference in winning and losing a national championship, especially on the highest levels of competition.

          The barrel is free floated and we have torture tested the rifle and it is more than “bomb proof” reliable. We have sent the gun to the toughest shoots in the country and it recently performed exceptionally at the MGM Ironman, with no failures.

          You’ll see in the article we stated the current muzzle device is just that, a muzzle device. The compensator is due to come out in a few months.

          The B.A.M.F. and its shooter won its division last weekend in a 3 gun nation affiliate event. So far it seems to be exceeding even our expectations.

          Like I said it isn’t for everyone, and we truly do appreciate your feedback positive and negative.

        • Doc Rader

          Fair points. I’d say to take the pics of my shots in context. They were not shot from a stable bench in optimal conditions. The reman ammo was dumped nearly as fast as I could pull the trigger (from around 35m) and all of those shots will fit in an index card. The match ammo was shot while loosely bracing on that barrel and while kneeling on hot pointy rocks…. 🙂

          Jeremy confirmed that the barrel is sub-MOA and they are currently being used in competition (one with a division win in a 3-Gun Nation Aff. Comp). I will update the article with his quote so that people don’t have to peruse the comments.

          Regarding the muzzle lift, even dumping the rounds there was very little (that’s why I put an index line in the video).

          I can’t argue about the stock. It felt fine, but I only shot with it for a few hours. I think the adjustment is going to be a pretty personal thing that once set is really not going to change much.

          The reliability was with fully stuffing a mag (which is something I was taught never to do; though in all fairness I have no idea why). The failure to seat was a cheap 20rd Wilson; I would argue that competitors are not going to run a smorgasbord of magazines. When I play 3-Gun I run 30 round PMags with generally not more than 20 rounds per mag. I would think that the $3000 BAMF is machined to spec and the <$20 magazines have some variance.

          I would say it depends on the match regarding reloads. I've seen at least one where you had to start short (2rds in the mag) forcing a change (granted I don't have 100's of matches under my belt, so that could be an anomaly). With practice I can see how the thumb actuated bolt drop can reduce movement and manipulations.

          I have no opinion on the trigger. My first "non-budget" trigger was the RISE Armaments. Until I shoot a Timney (or other in that price point) I can't make an assessment.

  • Jeremy

    For reals!!!! New right then and there, that I was reading something from a NM local. 🙂

    • Doc Rader

      You wanna coke? [hands a Dr. Pepper] Or some malk?

  • Boomboy007

    I think that this is a beautiful piece of practical art, although it is well out of budget for me. However, I might start selling blood if they do this in .300 blackout or .308!

  • Andrew

    “How did he die?”

    “Accidentally stabbed himself.”

    “Wait…I thought they said he got killed by a rifle?”

    “He did. He was running some drills, tripped and fell, and was impaled by the huge spikes on the end of the handguard.”

    • Scott_VIP

      I agree, I like the lines of the rifle but the sharp points are not needed. I can see them tearing up the inside of cases.

  • Andrew

    The only thing I hate more than a forward assist is TWO forward assists. No thank you.