[Review] Mid-Evil Industries 360 Vertical Fore Grip

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Now before you tune out just because this is a vertical fore grip, I implore you to read a little further. A couple of years ago I reviewed a Grip Pod, but really didn’t do much with it after. It was solidly built and put up with a ton of abuse, but again, it was a vertical fore grip, and I found it just getting in the way, unless I needed a quick and expedient bipod for my rifle during 3-Gun.

During my shoot with Cobalt Kinetics for their reveal of the CARS, I met Steve Azhocar of Mid-Evil Industries (a company based in Southern California also responsible for the Mag Magnet). He had provided a fore grip for use on the full auto variants we were shooting. I didn’t really think much of it at the time since I really didn’t get to play with it–the girls (Bre, Alex, and Kristie) were hogging the rifle with it installed… 🙂

Fast forward to SHOT Show 2016, and Steve ambushed me as I was trolling the lanes looking for interesting things. We chatted for a bit and he handed me one of the 360 Vertical Fore Grips to take home and play with. I ended up getting slammed with life and didn’t get a chance to really run it anywhere and I didn’t feel it would be fair (nor do it justice) to only spend a couple of hours with it at a tedious range practice.

Construction

At it’s heart, yes, it can be used as vertical fore grip. But that is where the similarity ends. It has a pretty unique (at least to me) feature that allows the “operator” (as in user of the rifle; not referencing bearded savants in multicam) to position it in basically ANY angle within a half sphere.

It attaches to the weapon through any of the current mounting options: picatinny, KeyMod, or MLOK (depending on which variant you buy).

Attach it to whatever mounting system you prefer--there are options for each.

Attach it to whatever mounting system you prefer–there are options for each.

You operate it by a simple twist of the lower portion of the grip, swivel it to your preferred orientation and then reverse the twist.

And. And. And. If you continue loosening the lower handle you will find that it is hollow and will hold a variety of things from batteries, to tools, to a spare bolt (I am assuming; I don’t have one to test as I write this but to my highly accurate eyes it looks right).

Observations

Since I was invited to Superstition Mountain Mystery 3-Gun, and I would be shooting on equipment entirely unknown to me, I could run it there. I contacted Russell Phagan and he was kind enough to get a picatinny section (the version of the 360 vertical fore grip I had) installed on the bottom of the KeyMod rail on the rifle I was to be shooting.

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Getting instructions from the RO for the stage.  360 VFG preset.

I found the 360 Vertical Fore Grip to be surprisingly intuitive, and because it could literally be positioned to any direction within the confines of a half sphere (maybe a tiny bit more due to the stand off), surprisingly versatile. No tools were needed. And once it was set, it was SET. It got banged around, and bumped into nearly everything, and never once lost its position.

Nice comfortable angle.

Nice comfortable angle.

I actually got a few comments which are a little too risqué for this group (since we need to keep it “G” rated and all)–it was good natured ribbing, of course, relating to the sanctity of my manhood for running something like it on my loaned rifle at Superstition Mountain Mystery 3-Gun. But then, after I ran a few stages with the 360 Vertical Fore Grip, and it became apparent it had a number of other uses, it started to get some begrudging respect from people in my squad. At the bequest of Glen Stilson I even ran it on one stage 90 degrees perpendicular to the barrel… 🙂

You can even stick it straight out to the side... :)

You can even stick it straight out to the side… 🙂

It was really nice because it allowed me to configure the ergonomics for ME. I’ve been trying to get behind the whole “C” grip thing and, honestly, it just doesn’t work well for me. It puts an unnatural bend in my wrist. Holding underneath the barrel is the same way.

Starting with the minigun, transitioning to the Milkor and then moving to the rifle before grabbing the shotgun. Who ever said 3-Gun was just three guns?

Starting with the minigun, transitioning to the Milkor and then moving to the rifle before grabbing the shotgun. Who ever said 3-Gun was just three guns?  The VFG gave a nice stable grip I could tension against.

With the Mid-Evil 360 Vertical Fore Grip I was able to get a very natural position, and one I could adjust with regard to fatigue or stage on the match. For example, I was not running a bipod on my rifle (obviously), but for a couple of the distance stages I was able to orient the 360 Vertical Fore Grip allowing me to load it against a barrier for stability (much like you would load a bipod, or even for pulling tension against).

I used to lock in and pull against the barrier while shooting targets out to 250m. Probably my fastest stage.

I used the 360 VFG to lock in and pull against the barrier while shooting targets out to 250m. Probably my fastest stage.

Conclusion

The more I used it, the more uses I found for it. Based on it’s performance at the 3-Gun match, it is going to become a feature on my rifle. It is a well constructed piece of gear. If you are a looking for a versatile way to manage the fore end of your weapon, give this a shot.

You can order one directly from Steve’s website at: https://Mid-Evilindustries.com/index.php?route=product/category&path=25_82.  MSRP: $150.



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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  • Looks like a very clever design. Kind of ties in with Nathaniel’s “The Flaw of Averages” article, about how being able to customize the ergonomics of a design for the individual user, as opposed to the “average” user, is so important.

  • randomswede

    “Holding underneath the barrel is the same way.”
    I’m sorry it may just be a “lost-in-translation” thing or I’m coming off either sounding smarmy or egg-faced but; isn’t there a way to fire the rifle without “holding under the barrel”?
    I could only think of three, “rambo style” with but tucked under elbow, the infamous 1960 police with his supporting hand over the barrel against the frontsight of an M16 and finally mag grip that could be argued to not be under the barrel.

    The product reminded me of “The Pat McNamara Sling Ding by TYR Tactical®”, as it’s also a repositionable and mission adjustable foregrip… thing.

    • M.M.D.C.

      “the infamous 1960 police with his supporting hand over the barrel against the frontsight of an M16”

      • Bear The Grizzly

        Oh wow! You are the internet hero of day.

      • Joe

        I thought this hold is to compensate for muzzle rise when fired full auto.
        Doesn’t seem applicable in a semi-auto, but I’m betting it “looked cool” for the 40 year old advertisement.

        • iksnilol

          Would be nice if he held his hand like 5 cm to the back. Would help him not burn his hand off.

      • randomswede

        That’s the one!
        Did I get my decennium right?

      • ShootCommEverywhere

        Not just against the gas block, but inside it and thumb resting on the gas tube! He’s gonna have a splendid time.

      • Phil Hsueh

        Is his thumb actually jammed into the front sight post?

  • CrankyFool

    I’m just going to be that guy …

    A. So you’ve got a VFG that rotates across 180 degrees and you’re calling it the 360?

    B. “I even ran it on one stage 90 degrees perpendicular to the barrel… ” I’m pretty sure it was always 90 degrees perpendicular to the barrel, wasn’t it?

    • John L.

      Having no experience with the product myself, but knowing a little geometry…

      a. Two angles define the thing’s direction. If the barrel is the reference axis it has 180 degrees (pointing left, down, right). If you look down from the top it has 360 degrees: pointed towards the muzzle, left side, buttstock, or right side. Or any angles in between, apparently.

      That is, it can be oriented in a half-sphere just as he states in the article.

      b. Except when it wasn’t. Like in the photo where he’s leaving it against a barrier at what looks like a 45 degree angle or thereabouts.

      • Doc Rader

        Exactly. Except in the barrier pic it was pointed back toward me.

    • Doc Rader

      All about the plane it is rotated in. But essentially like I said, you can move it within a half sphere.

  • Joe

    This has my attention.
    I blew out my left wrist at work a couple of years back, and as a result operating a standard pump shotgun was very painful, and I doubted I’d ever be able to hold a long gun traditionally without pain again.
    I figured I’d need a VFG since a traditional hold hurts, but I’ve never been a big fan due to 90 degrees still being uncomfortable.
    This grip seems like the best chance I have of running my long guns effectively.

  • Mark

    Wow this actually looks….very very nice. I was prepared for another xyz solution looking for a problem product but this looks amazingly sound and has my ergonomic senses tingling.

  • wetcorps

    This seems pretty tactical, but not as much as your beard 🙂

    • Doc Rader

      Valid.

    • politicsbyothermeans

      I was going to say, speaking of bearded savants…

      Beards save lives!

  • Steve Azhocar

    Tom, thanks for the review. the grip is great on the KSG and DP12 as well as tactical pump shotguns with Rails.

  • Geoff

    At first I wanted to scoff at this, but when I read and thought about it, this actually sounds pretty damn comfortable. I may end up trying one out.

    • Doc Rader

      It was. VFGs generally suck in my opinion. But this is really a misnomer since it can be put in so many more positions.

      • Geoff

        Actually, this reminds me of Tyr Tactical’s Sling Ding. Very similar, except the Sling Ding is part of the sling. Similar idea though.

  • ollan

    Should have patented this when I brought it up here a couple of years ago. Oh well, someone would have ripped it off anyway. Quite simply the future of vertical foregrips.

  • Mike

    Off topic, but what kind of frame is that with the Alice Pack?