Stag Arms AR-15, ready for the dragstrip

It was a few months ago I got a test rifle from Stag Arms to wring out. Though I was somewhat familiar with the company I had little experience with their rifles, so I went into this with an open mind. The test sample rifle was outfitted with Magpul furniture complete with flip up sights.

First Impressions

Six position Magpul collapsible stock, the castle nut is staked with the receiver end plate having provisions to attach a sling

The Magpul handguard was comfortable especially if you run an aggressive thumb over barrel grip. The area at the front of the handguard just behind the sling swivel allowed for locking your finger under the handguard, adding stability to the rifle. This rifle features a mid length gas system. However due to the cut of the handguard you do have to mount the included Magpul flip up sight backwards so it would collapse. Though it looked a little funky, it did not affect zero or accuracy.  M-Lok is standard on the handguard.

All the controls are exactly where you expected, and worked as they should. The forty round magazine fully loaded, was a bit tough to lock in when the bolt was in battery. Understand you are having to compress an already highly compressed spring, so that can be expected.

The single sided safety is standard. The trigger is better than a rack grade rifle, breaking clean at six and a half pounds with no take up and a bit of overtravel.

The included muzzle brake worked excellent to eliminate almost all perceived recoil with characteristics of a compensator helping with muzzle rise. You do lose any flash suppression and the muzzle report was pretty brutal perpendicular to the brake. The stainless steel barrel has a standard 5.56 NATO chamber and is 1 in 9 twist.

Stag is using the M4 type feed ramp, and I expect that contributed to the reliability.

The gas key was staked to the bolt carrier.

This is a typical 100 yard 3 shot group shot from a rest using a Riton 4.5-18×40 scope.

3 shot groups shot from a rest at 100 yards using optics.

Range Time


After about 500 various types of rounds without issue, even with a quick mud bath, I was satisfied the rifle was plenty reliable. Mounting a Riton 4.5-18×40 scope and Warne mount, reviewed here I learned the rifle averages MOA accuracy, especially with the heavier bullets. With the mid length gas system, Stag muzzle brake, and the Magpul handguard designed for a solid aggressive forward hold, the rifle was steady as a rock during offhand rapid fire. The drawback is the Stag comp is damn loud and offered very little flash suppression. Still, a worthy trade off. To me this rifle would be great if one wanted to get into three gun or some other competition where you are running an AR style rifle on top of all of the other glorious uses of America’s favorite rifle.  Though this is my first project with Stag, I hope it is not my last. All in all I am satisfied with the rifle and believe it is a bit more gun than you are paying for at this MSRP.


Action: Semi-auto direct impingement

Chamber: 5.56 NATO | .223

Twist Rate: 1/9 button rifled

Pivot/Takedown Pin Size: Small pin .250″

Muzzle Device: Stag Compensator

Barrel: 16″, 410 Stainless Steel

Handguard: Magpul® Mid-Length MOE® Black

Upper Receiver: Forged and mil-spec with type 3 hard coat anodizing

Bolt Carrier: Mil-Spec Manganese Phosphate coated M16 BCG

Charging Handle: Standard mil-spec

Gas System: Mid Length

Lower Receiver Material: 7075 T6 aluminum with a type 3 hard coat anodizing

Hammer/Trigger pin size: Mil-spec small pin .154″

Pivot/Takedown Pin Size: Mil-spec small pin – .250″

Buttstock: CTR® Carbine Stock | Mil-spec

Buffer: Standard carbine buffer and spring

Trigger: Mil-spec single stage trigger with a non-adjustable 5-8 pound trigger pull. MOE® Trigger Guard, Polymer

Grip: MOE® Grip

Safety Selector: Right Hand

Trigger pull:

MSRP: $829.98


Stag Arms 

Defender Ammunition 


Young Guns Apex NC

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8 Responses to Stag Arms AR-15, ready for the dragstrip

  1. Barbara Elliott July 18, 2017 at 7:54 am #

    Love the video — really good clear information. Enjoyed shooting this and want to put in my order. Thanks, Hunter.


  2. Kiwacka July 18, 2017 at 8:24 am #

    Its nice to see a rifle at that price that isn’t sporting the standard AR/M4 stock, grip and hand guard. Looks like Stag really is offering more rifle for the money! Muzzle breaks rule!

    Kind of funny that magpul doesn’t design their hand gaurds to accept their own front sight. Nice review Hunter! The 40 rounder is cool too.

  3. Derak July 19, 2017 at 6:05 pm #

    This was a nice rifle to shoot. With that muzzle break on it, it shot like a .22 rifle. Yes, you do feel the blast when you are standing perpendicular from the shooter and it is very LOUD. The trade off for the felt recoil though. I liked the Magpul furniture on it. Thanks again for having me out to shoot.

  4. Tom July 23, 2017 at 10:43 pm #

    Great review! How would you compare this to a bushmaster AR-15 rifle build/quality-wise? They’ve really outdone themselves on this from the look of it. There are just SO MANY AR-15s on the market these days it’s insane. Keep up the good work, Its always a pleasure to read all of your reviews.

    • Hunter Elliott July 24, 2017 at 12:24 am #

      Thank you Tom, I appreciate your support.
      I do not have a lot of experience with Bushmaster rifles, and the ones I have shot worked fine but between the two I believe I prefer the Stag Arms rifle. To me it just felt better if that makes sense.

  5. Brad December 19, 2017 at 12:34 pm #

    Do you have a link to the specific model? I can’t seem to find this on the Stag website.

    • Hunter Elliott December 19, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

      I believe this was their standard lower with a specific upper. I will see if I can find the link and post it.


  1. You'll Soon Be Seeing A Lot More Stag Arms - Breach Bang Clear - March 20, 2018

    […] (/StagArms/) or follow them on Instagram, @stag_arms. Wanna know more? Range Hot recently published this review of the Stag Arms AR-15, and our own Dave Merrill ran this FB Live video not too long ago on […]

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