AR-15 Trigger: The How and Why

Project ar15 Apr 17, 2024
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Ar15 triggers

Understanding AR-15 Trigger Function

The AR-15 rifle has gained significant popularity among firearm enthusiasts, thanks to its versatility and customization options. One crucial component of an AR-15 is the trigger, which plays a vital role in determining accuracy, reliability, and user experience. In this article, we will explore how AR-15 triggers function, the difference between single-stage and two-stage triggers, and shed light on the concept of Forced Reset Triggers (FRTs) while emphasizing the distinction between FRTs and automatic fire.


Function of AR-15 Triggers


The AR-15 trigger is responsible for initiating the firing sequence. When the shooter pulls the trigger, it activates a series of mechanisms that result in the release of the hammer, striking the firing pin, and ultimately igniting the primer of the cartridge. Understanding the trigger's function is crucial for maintaining accuracy and firearm safety.

AR15 Trigger/Hammer Fire Control Group


Single-Stage Ar15 Triggers


A single-stage trigger is the most basic type found in AR-15 rifles. When the shooter pulls the trigger, it offers a consistent pull weight throughout the entire process. As the trigger is squeezed, it moves backward until the hammer is released, firing the rifle. Single-stage triggers are often preferred for close-quarters shooting or situations where rapid and consistent trigger pulls are desired.


Are Two-Stage Ar15 Triggers Better or Just Different?


In contrast to single-stage triggers, two-stage triggers feature a distinct separation between the initial take-up and the final release. The first stage, known as the "slack" or "take-up," offers a lighter pull weight and allows the shooter to feel the trigger's movement before reaching the second stage. The second stage is the point of resistance, where increased pressure is required to release the hammer.


The primary advantage of two-stage triggers is their ability to provide shooters with improved control, especially for precision shooting applications. The deliberate break at the second stage allows for a more predictable trigger pull, enhancing accuracy and reducing the chances of inadvertent shots.


Ar15 Forced Reset Triggers (FRTs) and Binary Triggers


Forced Reset Triggers (FRTs) are a relatively recent development in firearm technology. They are often put into the same category as "Binary" or "Echo" triggers. These triggers are designed to simulate a rapid-fire experience by automatically resetting themselves after each shot. However, it's important to note that FRTs are distinct from fully automatic firing. While FRTs can deliver a high rate of fire, they still require an individual pull of the trigger for each shot. The trigger's mechanism resets automatically, allowing for a quick follow-up shot. Binary triggers fire another round by releasing the trigger.

What's the Difference Between FRTs and Automatic Fire?


Fully automatic firearms, commonly referred to as machine guns, are designed to continuously fire as long as the trigger is held down. They utilize an internal mechanism. On the other hand, FRTs require a separate trigger pull for each shot, even though the reset happens automatically.


Fully automatic firearms are highly regulated in most jurisdictions, often requiring specific licenses and permits. FRTs, depending on local regulations, may or may not fall within the same legal framework.


A Key Role


The trigger of an AR-15 rifle plays a critical role in determining its functionality, accuracy, and user experience. Single-stage triggers offer a consistent pull weight throughout, while two-stage triggers provide enhanced control for precision shooting. Forced Reset Triggers (FRTs) are a recent development that automatically reset themselves, allowing for faster follow-up shots. However, it's important to understand that FRTs should not be confused with fully automatic fire. As with any firearm, it is essential to familiarize yourself with local regulations.