Geisslele Automatics won a contract to supply AR-15 rifles to Customs and Border Protection (CBP). This new contract includes both complete rifles and upper receiver groups. Let’s take a look at the specifics of this contract, and what it might mean for Geissele’s future civilian offerings.
Geissele @ TFB:
- Geissele Releases the SSA-E X Trigger for Individual Sale
- The Bayonet Mount from Geissele Automatics
- New(dy) Mags – Geissele Springs Into The AR-15 Magazine Game
- [SHOT 2020] Geissele Super Precision 1-6 First Impressions
- [SHOT 2019] Geissele Super Duty
CBP has been upgrading their arsenal over the last few years. They recently moved from .40 S&W to a range of 9mm Parabellum Glocks, including the G26, G19 MOS, and only-for-CBP G47. Various BCM uppers have been photographed on CBP guns recently too.
This BCM connection appears to be acknowledged in this contract solicitation, which specifically mentions several BCM products. Those BCM items include barrels, handguards, and charging handles. The new contract (which Geissele won) says that the performance must meet or exceed that of the BCM parts.
The contract specifically calls for certain parts and features for all rifles. The stocks will all be collapsible models compatible with mil-spec buffer tubes. The stocks must meet or exceed the performance of the Magpul CTR and/or BCM Gunfighter stocks. No sling mounting points are to be included in the receiver end plate. H2 buffers are the minimum weight specified in the Statement of Work.
Three triggers are specified, two for automatic rifles and one for semi autos. The sole semi-auto trigger is a non-adjustable single-stage unit that must meet or exceed a BCM polished nickel trigger. Both single-stage and two-stage automatic triggers are specified.
All rifles and uppers are to be delivered in black. Ambidextrous safeties are required for semi- and full-auto rifles. No sights are to be included with the contract rifles or uppers. A2 flash hiders, threaded 1/2×28, are required on all contract guns. All barrels are to be cold hammer forged, chrome lined, with a 1:7 twist. The bolt carrier groups for all contract rifles and uppers are the full-auto style, which is the de facto industry standard these days. Keeping auto carriers in all of the rifles helps simplify the logistical footprint for this contract as well. All upper receivers are required to include the forward assist assembly (no doubt to the chagrin of certain forward assist haters on ARFCOM).
The contract lists three variations of rifles and uppers: Short Barrel Rifle, Standard Patrol Rifle, and Designated Marksman Rifle.
Short Barrel Rifle (SBR)
The SBR will have an 11.5-inch barrel with a carbine length gas system and a ~10″ handguard. The contract lists a range of allowable lengths that would generally be called 10″ handguards. Geissele sells 11.5″ uppers and complete pistols that roughly line up with the CBP contract guns, with the obvious difference of a stock instead of an arm brace. CBP’s contract includes select-fire and semi-auto SBRs. Though the contract requires A2 flash hiders, muzzle devices capable of mounting SureFire suppressors are also specified in the contract.
Standard Patrol Rifle (SPR)
The SPR (not to be confused with the OG Mk12) is a carbine with a 14.5″ barrel with mid-length gas system and a ~13″ handguard. CBP’s contract includes both select-fire and semi-auto SPRs. Presumably, this will be the most common variant in the contract.
Designated Marksman Rifle (DMR)
The DMR is unique because it does not line up with any current Geissle offering. The longest barrel currently offered by Geissele is 16 inches, but the DMR requires an 18-20 inch barrel with a rifle-length gas system. While a 1:7 twist is required for the SBR and SPR, the DMR has the option of a 1:7 or 1:8 twist. Strangely, the DMR requires a government profile barrel. That is one of the worst possible profiles, but it is a very common profile so it is a known quantity. An M-4 barrel extension is specified for the DMR and for all of the other rifles. Some 20″ barrels in the market use M-16 feed ramps, but keeping M-4 ramps makes more sense and keeps the logistics simple.
The required ~15 inch handguard has a maximum allowed weight of 9.5 ounces without mounting hardware. This is much lighter than any current Geissele handguard. The lightest 15″ option currently shown on their website is the Mk14, which weighs 11.6 ounces without mounting hardware. Time will tell what handguard shows up on the contract DMR. No select-fire DMR was solicited in the contract, which makes sense for a precision rifle.
This is not an exhaustive examination of the CBP contract, but we should have a decent idea of what the new Geissele rifles will look like. The contract included other support as well, including armorer training by the manufacturer. The tentative end date for this contract is in January 2023, though extensions are possible. Perhaps we will see a sample CBP rifle at SHOT 2023.
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