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Pursue Your Passion

Geissele Maritime Bolt Catch

Geissele Maritime Bolt Catch

Product in this review:
Geissele Maritime Bolt Catch - AR15

I've never been a huge fan of the stock AR-15 bolt catch. Let's be honest - the thing is tiny. Don't get me wrong, the bolt catch performs its job, but there's plenty of room for improvement.

The MBC features extended, aggressively textured pads at top and bottom, designed to improve handling for both right and left-handed individuals. When I say extended, it's not hype. The bottom pad is four times as large as stock. The top pad is nearly three times as large. Both pads are angled back toward the user to help extend their reach to the controls.

From my time with the MBC, I can say that the advertised advantages are 100% accurate. As a right-hander, the enlarged upper pad makes it much easier to put the bolt forward with my thumb (my preferred method). When it comes to using it with my left hand, it makes both locking and releasing the bolt significantly easier. I've got really large hands, so I've always been able to reach the bolt catch, even with a stock one. However, the enlarged pads mean improved leverage and that I don't have to be quite as precise when I press the catch, while the aggressive texture makes both very easy to find. The top and bottom pads are also shaped differently, which can help with identification in the dark.

Now, despite how awesome the MBC is, there are some constraints you need to be aware of. First, Geissele will tell you in their literature that the lower pad blocks the left side of the hammer pin. You'll only be able to put the pin in or out from the right. Honestly, this doesn't even give me a minute of pause, but since Geissele mentions it, I figured I would too.  Second, if you're running an ambi mag release, especially one like the Norgon, the lower pad might interfere with its function. It's not a guarantee, but there's a decent likelihood. A different style, like the Troy or Knight's might work better for you. Unfortunately, I don't have either to test. This is based solely on my observations of the clearance between the MBC and a stock mag catch. Third, the MBC is designed for use with standard forged upper receivers. If you have an oversize billet upper, the MBC probably won't work (but then again, most enhanced bolt catches won't work either).

With those constraints out of the way, I've used several enhanced bolt catches, and I think that the MBC should be at the top of your list when you start your research. It's well thought out, well constructed, and it enhances your rifle's functionality. What more could you ask for?

I hope this has been helpful. If so, feel free to share. As always, Rainier Arms stands ready to help you Pursue Your Passion.

Product from this review:
Geissele Maritime Bolt Catch - AR15

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