[SHOT 2023] Matrix Arms "Cage" AR-15 Dual Pump Handguard

Daniel Y
by Daniel Y

Matrix Arms showed off their new Cage pump action handguard for AR-15 rifles at SHOT 2023 Industry Range Day. Matrix is based in New Hampshire and has been in business since 2015. They are an OEM for other manufacturers and have built products for over 100 variances.

[SHOT 2023] Matrix Arms “Cage” AR-15 Pump Handguard

The Cage handguard allows the rifle to function in either semiautomatic or pump action modes. With a gas block and gas tube, the rifle functions normally. The one major difference from a standard AR-15 is that the pump can be used as a sort of alternate charging handle.

With the gas system removed the Cage becomes a regular pump action rifle. Both the pump and the charging handle can be used to manipulate the bolt. Matrix describes this as a 50-state legal AR solution. Matrix also has plans for accessory mounts on the rails supporting the pump.

[SHOT 2023] The Cage pump has an action bar connected to the left side of the receiver
Matrix also had their MX19 pistol family on display and available for use on the range. Most of the MX19 is produced in-house, including the frame, slide, and barrel. The MX19 is compatible with Glock 19 Gen 3 parts, but has a few interesting features of its own. A redesigned grip is the most obvious visual difference. However, the MX19 hides a unique feature within the frame.
[SHOT 2023] Matrix Arms MX19 pistols on the firing line at Range Day, showing some of the options for cosmetics

With the slide removed, there is one obvious difference from any other Glock-style pistol. Matrix added a nylon buffer at the front of the front block. The slide runs on the rails formed by the front and rear blocks. The buffer in the front block is patent pending and reduces felt recoil. It is a replaceable wear component, but in the six months that the MX19 has been on the market they have not yet had one returned for a new buffer. For what it is worth, as a Glock 19 guy, I could feel a difference in the recoil impulse from a standard gun.

[SHOT 2023] A buffer sits in front of the front block of the MX19 to reduce recoil
Pricing for the MX19 starts at $999, and they are available now on their website.

TFB and TFBTV’s coverage of SHOT Show 2023 is proudly sponsored by 5.11 Tactical. Click here to check out their new products.

Daniel Y
Daniel Y

AKA @fromtheguncounter on Instagram. Gun nerd, reloader, attorney, and mediocre hunter. Daniel can still be found on occasion behind the counter at a local gun store. When he is not shooting, he enjoys hiking, camping, and rappelling around Utah.

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2 of 16 comments
  • BeoBear BeoBear on Jan 19, 2023

    I'm not up on all the states laws but I question the 50 state legal part. The fact that it also operates in semi auto alone and has detachable mags would DQ it in some wouldn't it? I still live in America so I'm not sure what the current law is behind the iron curtain.

    That said, if it is 50 state legal and reliable, these guys deserve an award.

  • Cymond Cymond on Jan 19, 2023

    The fact the pump is bolted on to a side charging upper is just trash. This looks like something some guy would come up with in his garage.