TFB was recently contacted by Adam Edelman, co-owner of American Built Arms Company, to review the company’s SBR V*Grip, a vertical foregrip “designed and engineered for Bullpups, SBRs, SMGs, Shotguns” and, of course, the AR15.
Adam asked that I put one on an AK and provide my observations, which are as follows:
The V*Grip is a polymer composite material throughout, as with most VFGs these days. The two mounting screws are, of course, steel, as are the nuts that retain the screws in place. The V*Grip uses a two-bolt Picatinny mounting system. The retention nuts are non-captive, which means that they are easy to replace, but can also get lost if you drop one while installing or removing the V*Grip. I opine that non-captive mounting nuts, such as those on the V*Grip are superior; you can always replace them if you damage them or strip the threads, and you can use a little tape or glue to temporarily keep them in place during install/removal. The V*Grip needs five (5) T-marks of rail to fit on your weapon, plus a little clearance on either side. Accordingly, make sure your firearm has enough vacant real estate before purchase.
The V*Grip is just the right size for a VFG. It’s slim and low-profile, but, by virtue of the two-bolt mount, extremely sturdy. The oval-chain stippling gives a good amount of grip without being overly abrasive.
While the V*Grip has an easy to access but fairly secure battery compartment – the baseplate slides forward and is held in place by a slight detent peg. (As a side note – and you will hear me say this again – I always think of the Magpul line of grips as having the most needlessly-difficult-to-access battery/accessory compartments in their grips). For being as small as it is, the V*Grip accepts two AA batteries. It will accept only one of the slightly-fatter CR123 cells.
My favorite aspect of the V*Grip, however, is that it is easily reversible for two modes of use. My personal favorite is to mount the grip with the base swooping forward, similar to the traditional Romanian AK integrated-VFG, allowing for a rock-solid thumb-break foregrip on your AK. In this regard, I think the V*Grip excels over other offerings in that the forward-swept grip angle is superior to the plain, vertical angle, at least in my experience and using a thumb-break style grip.
On the other hand, for those of you who employ the “beer can” style of vertical grip, there’s good news for you also. The V*Grip can be mounted with the grip angled towards the shooter, and it brilliantly incorporates one finger groove and a thumb shelf – excellent and well thought out ergonomic inclusions.
One caveat specific to the AK – in the backward-facing configuration, the V*Grip may impede clearance of your rock-and-lock AK mags, barely falling within the rotational arc of the magazine as it is being swung in or out of the magazine well (see picture). However, this is only if you mount the grip too close to the mag well, and this should be a non-issue with probably 99% of all configurations – just thought I would mention it as something to be aware of.
In conclusion, the V*Grip is one of the better grips I have used on a carbine. The ergonomics are excellent, and if you like the traditional Romanian forward-swept VFG handguard, there is no question that this is your VFG. Although I haven’t had a chance to run it through the wringer over an extended period of time, it seems sturdily built, and I doubt prolonged use would faze this accessory. This is an excellent product.
The American Built Arms Company SBR V*Grip is designed & manufactured in the USA by a veteran owned company. MSRP is $39.99.