[SHOT 2016] Daniel Defense’s Lightweight 7.62

    Earlier this year, Daniel Defense announced their new entry into the thirty-caliber AR-15 market: The DD5V1, a lightweight, direct impingement 7.62x51mm/.308 Winchester rifle using a shortened rear receiver with a dedicated bolt and bolt carrier for the .308 cartridge family. Daniel Defense was present at the SHOT Show Industry Day At The Range 2016, along with their DD5V1, and TFB got behind the trigger.


    My initial impressions are positive. The rifle is light and well-balanced, like one would expect of a member of the AR family, and recoil was not more than I expected for a gun of this type (though it certainly won’t be winning any awards in that respect). With a mounted 1-6 power Trijicon VCOG, the rifle shot very well, though the targets were not very far, and the rifle supported by a bipod on the bench. The VCOG is a great choice for a rifle of this type, with a clear, crisp reticle and an excellent magnification range for multi-purpose shooting.


    Daniel Defense claims the rifle weighs 8.3 lbs unloaded, which seems very reasonable to me. Had I not known that figure ahead of time, I would have actually guessed even less than that, as with the bipod and optic, it still felt lighter than I expected.

    Thanks to Edward O. for his help with the photography.

    Nathaniel F

    Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. He can be reached via email at [email protected]