charging handle...clueless [Archive] - Glock Talk


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02-06-2010, 20:39
I don't know much if anything about the "black rifle". I searched on the internet, but mostly found places to buy a charging handle. What does a charging handle do? Is it like racking the slide on an semi-auto pistol? Also, if you have a charging handle, do you also have the bolt handle that you pull back which is located on the side of the receiver? Are these all the same thing except different on different models?
I'm really just curious, so, if someone has a link that explains all of this stuff that would be great. I'll go back to searching on YouTube.


02-06-2010, 21:21
The charging handle is like racking the slide.
It pulls the bolt back, and when you let go, the buffer spring bushes the bolt forward, which also strips the top round out of the mag.

02-06-2010, 22:15
Go here....history of the M16/AR15

There is no bolt handle....only a charging handle.

It rides inside the upper receiver and engages the bolt carrier group [which contains the bolt]. Pulling back on the charging handle is what opens the dust cover, unlocks the bolt lugs from the chamber area and retracts the entire bolt carrier group to the rear thus opening the action so you can see inside to the chamber.

The link has some good info and history.

02-06-2010, 22:30
Anyone know why the AR charging handle was invented, vice the traditional stubby handle right on the bolt? Seems like re-inventing the wheel, and coming up with a square one. Just the number of aftermarket parts claiming to address the gas and powder in face problems of the AR charging handle tells you the AR design has some drawbacks.

I think the FN/FAL got it right, with the non-reciprocating bolt handle on the left side of the receiver.

The AR bolt charging handle seems like a really bad, overly complex way to solve a fairly simple problem. If you have ever mounted a traditional scope on something like a varmint hunting AR, then you know why the charging handle placement on an AR is not the best idea anyone ever had.


02-06-2010, 23:17
I have a good 20 yrs trigger time with the AR15 and M16/M4....never noticed any issue with gas or powder in my face...maybe thats just me...........nose right up there on it. :dunno:

I like the design just fine.

02-06-2010, 23:43
The AR style charging handle also addresses the problems associated with reciprocating "bolt handles". With an ultimately lighter bolt assembly, there is less felt recoil. I also imagine is closes up the massive cutout needed for the "bolt handle" to reciprocate back to the buffer tube. Such a cut out would lead to massive problems with outside grime entering the chamber, I imagine it would also change pressures in the chamber, therefore changing the DI system associated with the AR.

As for powder in the face, its my understanding this is only an issue with suppressed rifles that are also SBR'ed, and even then its not really a big deal.

02-07-2010, 02:03
The AR was designed with a charging handle the way it is for a reason. Eugene Stoner really was a firearmes genius and was very forward thinking. He did design the weapon to be used for gunfighting, ie fast reloads, all operations being performed with the non-firing hand, etc. The charging handle where it is located can be easily charged with either hand while a more traditional bolt handle would require more unneccesary movement that would slow a fighter down. Even though he initially designed the charging handle inside the carrying handle, it was later moved to it's present location during further development in the early 60s.

02-07-2010, 04:41

02-07-2010, 11:35
Thanks for the info :)

02-08-2010, 10:37
Is a "cocking handle" the same or similar to a "charging handle"?