TFB Review: The FIMS Firearms FMR. Out of the Box Excellence?

Luke C.
by Luke C.

In a market absolutely saturated with AR-15 style rifles, it’s hard to stand out. Seemingly everything has been done to make the platform more reliable, more accurate and more ergonomic. Even with all the top tier options out there, some available at very reasonable prices, people still choose to go with PSA and Anderson Rifles. The new FMR from FIMS Firearms is intended to stand amongst the greats in the top tiers of the AR-15 Market.


FIMS is a world leader in machining and machine solutions. With almost 50 years of experience and dedicated employees, your next project will be their best. Mike Facchini is the current President and one of the owners of FIMS. The company was started in 1962 by his grandfather and father and like most shops, had humble beginnings with a few key machines in a small area.

The origin of the shop’s name tells the whole story — F (Facchini, the family name) I (Irma, Mike’s grandmother) M (Mario, Mike’s grandfather), S (Sergio, Mike’s father). FIMS is, in every sense, a family business. In 2016 FIMS acquired its Class 07 FFL in order to expand into the manufacturing of firearms. Hiring several engineers, FIMS is now paving the way to make an impact on the defense industry.

Key Features and specifications of the FIMS FMR

Mike Facchini, current president and one of the owners of FIMS, was generous enough to lend TFB one of his new FMR rifles for this review. In addition to the rifle, Mike sent along some of their in-house 3D printed carbon fiber accessories to test on the rifle.

So what is it that is supposed to set the FMR apart from cookie-cutter Chineseium AR-15s? To start, all of FIMS Firearms components are made right here in the Good Ole’ USA. To take it a step further, nearly every component from the receiver set to even the charging handle and M-LOK accessories are made in house at FIMS.

FIMS FMR Bolt Action Conversion

One of the key features of the FMR was supposed to be a mechanism that allowed the rifle to be converted from Semi-Auto to Bolt action with complete reversibility and minimal time. Unfortunately, the feature is currently in contention with the ATF and Mike Facchini says they are currently seeking approval from the ATF for this feature to be included in retail sales of the FMR. I would very much like to see this option as a standard feature in their future rifles.


The core of the FMR is its FIMS Extreme Strength AR-15 Reciever set. Constructed from 7075-T aluminum the receiver set is machined on a single Jig. This practice makes all FIMS Firearms particularly accurate in terms of machining. This procedure produces a NoGap Fit™ between the upper and lower receivers. This gives you a near-seamless joining of the upper and lower receivers and ensures the takedown pins are not loose inside the pinholes. There is absolutely no rocking in any direction between the two receivers.

Some Grievances

As far as AR-15’s go, the FMR was put together very well. I only had a few minor grievances with the overall construction of the rifle the first of which is that the castle nut was not staked. By not staking your castle nut, you reduce the overall reliability of your AR-15 and, in turn, introduce a higher probability of a catastrophic failure. I personally didn’t have any issues out of the rifle from this not being done but the first thing I would do if I were to own this rifle is to properly stake the castle nut.

Another minor point of contention for me was the selection of FIMS to use Hexmags. Personally, I’m either a USGI or Magpul guy. If I’m feeling rather suave I’ll lay down my hard-earned cash for a lancer mag or two. My personal experience with Hexmags is that they tend not to store ammunition well over long periods of time. The soft and thin plastic expands over time and causes fitment and retention issues if you store the mags with ammunition in them.

The Mag that FIMS sent me worked flawlessly and I suppose the reason for using Hexmags would be that they are dirt cheap and in a competition setting where you’d be dropping them and slamming them into drop barrels losing one wouldn’t hurt as much as a PMAG or Lancer AWM.

Find AR-15 Magazines


In addition to these fitment practices, the entire outside of the rifle including the handguard features a “melted” texture, there are very few protrusions and rough edges on the rifle leaving the operator with a smooth feeling platform. Even the takedown pins are machined flush with the receiver. The solid finish on all the parts does tend to give the shooter a “slippery” feeling but the addition of a hand stop and angled foregrip mitigate the tendency for my hand to slip forward on the handguard.


The rifle FIMS sent me used a 16″ Hybrid Profile Criterion barrel. With a reputation for being some of the best on the market, the Criterion barrel had my attention from the moment I pulled the FMR from the case. With a 1:8” twist rate and a .223 Wylde chamber, the barrel has the makings of an excellent shooter, especially with the Criterion name backing it up.

The Flash Hider created a high-pitch "ping" sound whenever I fired the rifle.

The muzzle device sent was a “tuning fork” style flash hider. The flash hider was just 1.7″ long and only added about an inch to the overall length of the rifle. The flash hider was made from black oxide steel and was extremely durable, much more so than my unfortunate shooting bag which I tore a nice hole through while testing. FIMS also offers a muzzle brake that comes in either black oxide steel or titanium.

RIP my Shooting Bag. I think I understand now why so many people have duct tape on their shooting bags.

Some of the features I really appreciated about the FMR were related to its handling. The handguard like I said has a melted texture making it glassy smooth, gloves not required. The beveled and flared mag well made for some fast and smooth reloads with the melted texture again being used on the edges of the mag well.

The fire selector switches were ambidextrous and had crisp tactile clicks when moving from safe to fire. The mag release got the same treatment as the receiver and was smooth to the touch. The charging handle, which is now made in house, was on par with Raptor charging handles.

Of special note, the charging handles are actually Betenzone Manufacturing charging handles. Just this year, FIMS acquired Beatenzone’s operation and now produces its charging handles under the FIMS name. This added to the list of parts that are produced in-house by FIMS.

Accuracy Testing

I tested the FMR with both 55-grain and 69-grain .223 Rem at 100 yards. The rifle shot accurately at that distance and I’m sure a more competent shooter could reach out and provide much better accuracy than I could. Below are two of my last 10 shot groups at 100 yards.

I am not an extremely experienced long-range shooter so I opted not to take the rifle out past 100 yards. I don’t feel qualified to provide a definitive opinion on long-range accuracy but the rifle did seem to fall within above-average accuracy expectations at the 100-yard range. So this disclaimer here is that your mileage may vary in the accuracy department depending on your experience level.

Short Range Testing

The FMR is average in weight for being such an overbuilt rifle weighing in right at 7.8 lbs without an optic. The replacement with some of the steel components with titanium components might shave a few ounces off here and there. The bulk of the weight seems to center around the beefed-up receiver set which FIMS has stated are reinforced to provide extreme durability.

Short-range is where the FIMS rail accessories really came into play. The carbon fiber reinforced parts are light-weight and tough as nails. The components are made in house via a 3D printing operation using Onyx Filament which is nylon mixed with chopped carbon fiber. This offers a high-strength thermoplastic with excellent heat resistance, surface finish in addition to chemical resistance.

The rifle handled excellent in close range situations and the ERGO 2 grip gave me great purchase on the rifle in tandem with the rail accessories which made driving the muzzle to the next target a breeze. I would say that this rifle would fit right in with other competition rifles in a short-range environment.

The included Timney trigger was great for quick follow up shots. The trigger breaks right at 4lbs and has a short and tactile reset I appreciated. In addition to Timney triggers, FIMS also offers Hiperfire triggers.


What do I think about the FIMS FMR rifle? Its rock-solid no questions asked. The rifle came in great packaging and offered mostly top-shelf parts right out of the box. The FMR was ready to go after the addition of an optic and the provided accessories. The rifle fed and ate all the ammo I threw at it and performed flawlessly. Through the 600 or so rounds during testing, I had zero failures when using various magazines. It is also worth noting that the FMR is not compatible with UTG magazines.

It is extremely hard to stand out in the AR-15 market these days. But I think FIMS stands a chance of making their rifles some of the most well known out there. With a $2,500 price tag, I came into this review with extremely high expectations and the rifle didn’t disappoint. That being said, without the bolt-action conversion option the rifle doesn’t really yet stand out from the crowd.

Final Thoughts

For a turn-key competition gun I’d put the FMR in the top 5 I’d consider buying for competition. The combination of a solid chassis, quality parts, and top tier quality manufacturing practices make this rifle a solid choice. Any shooter trying to build a solid kit will be happy with the options available.

MSRP for The FMR is $2,500 as tested; the optics I used in my tests are not part of the package. Currently, the FIMS website gives you the option to build your own rifles. On the site, you can build and customize them with different triggers, grips, muzzle devices, and accessories.

I’d like to personally thank Paradigm Armory of Millington, TN for facilitating the transfer for this review. Paradigm Armory is a small shop operated by Shaun Jolly that offers affordable prices on firearms, gunsmithing services, safes, and accessories. Go check out his company’s Facebook Page and support a small business owner!

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Luke C.
Luke C.

Reloader SCSA Competitor Certified Pilot Currently able to pass himself off as the second cousin twice removed of Joe Flanigan. Instagram:

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3 of 71 comments
  • Various cheeses Various cheeses on Oct 15, 2019

    What’s the latest on their AR10 straight pull bullpup?

  • Ondej Tma Ondej Tma on Oct 16, 2019

    What's the obsession with "no rocking between upper and lower"? Patrick Sweeney in his "Gunsmithing the AR-15" says that "the gap" between receiver parts is irrelevant, and I could only imagine relevance on a DMR ARs where the rocking could affect POI between where you hold the lower and where the upper points.

    To me, this seems as "we run out of ideas to differentiate, let's focus on irrelevant".

    When NEAG (similar company) tried to be "innovative", they at least experimented with different bolt materials and locking lug shapes (only to find out that Stoner had reason to engineer them as he did). And they threw in "polygonal" sub-MoA barrel (actually sawtooth profile IMO).

    • Aono Aono on Oct 16, 2019

      @Ondřej Tůma Receiver fit isn’t TOTALLY irrelevant as it affects the relationship of the hammer to the firing pin, and will have an imperceptible effect on your positioning.. but it’s certainly less relevant than almost any other factor with regard to accuracy/precision