- V Seven Weapon Systems
- Magnesium Hyper-Light M-LOK Handguard AR15 (13.5”): $289
- URL: vsevenweaponsystems.com
What is your rifle’s handguard made out of? We’re willing to bet that you have at least one rifle that is equipped with either an aluminum or polymer handguard. Or are you a throwback that prefers wood? If you’re something fancy, you might even have one constructed out of carbon fiber. Why did you choose your handguard? Was it for its looks, for its performance aspects, or both?
Those are the questions that V Seven Weapon Systems wants you to ask yourself. As one of the foremost innovators in the firearms accessories space, V Seven has been leading the way with inventive designs and the use of exotic blends of alloys in their products since their founding.
V Seven has become known amongst AR-15 connoisseurs as the company that wants to make your rifle as light as possible, going as far as manufacturing the smallest components such as trigger and hammer pins and even the AR’s buffer retainer pin in lightweight titanium. They take the “ounces equal pounds” saying to a whole other level.
When not creating parts out of titanium or a material they call “super aluminum” (more on this later), they are perfectly happy injecting your rifle with magnesium. Magnesium is said to be the lightest structural metal in use and is a perfect complement for blending with aluminum to form an alloy that features a lower density, higher stiffness to weight ratio and good corrosion resistance.
V Seven’s Magnesium Hyper-Light M-LOK Handguard for the AR-15 and other compatible rifles is manufactured from a blended aluminum and magnesium alloy that promises an approximately 30% reduction in material weight when compared to more commonly used aluminum alloys such as 6061. The 13.5-inch length model shown here weighs about a mere 5.2 ounces. That’s only about one-and-one-tenth times as heavy as a D-sized battery. One-and-one-tenth.
Available in both KeyMod and M-LOK and in varying lengths from 9.2-inches all the way to 16.5-inches long, our M-LOK model features three integrated quick-detach swivel swing mount points near the barrel nut attachment areas and plenty of M-LOK attachment points along the 3, 6, and 9 o’clock surfaces.
The continuous top Picatinny rail is relived to help keep the handguard light and highly maneuverable. Its slim line design features a 1.3-inch horizontal internal dimension and a 1.55-inch vertical measurement to help fit low profile gas blocks. We found that this ultra lightweight handguard, when mounted with a lightened barrel and gas block, was exceptional in keeping the AR-15’s muzzle end quick and agile to point.
As if the blended aluminum and magnesium alloy wasn’t innovative enough, the handguard is finished with a plasma deposition process that provides a tough ceramic-like coating. V Seven informs us that this process results in superior wear resistance compared to anodizing. We noticed that it results in a deep, satin black that looks damned sexy and is velvety smooth to the touch. All the edges of the handguard have been melted for snag and cut free handling.
The barrel nut that is included with the Hyper-Light is made of what V Seven calls, “super aluminum.” This special aluminum is also known as 7068, which is significantly harder and stronger than even 7075 aluminum. Our research taught us that 7068 alloy is one of the strongest commercially available aluminum alloys and that it possesses a tensile strength that is even comparable to certain steels. This allows it to be both light and strong. The nut itself is hardcoat anodized in black and weighs just a hair over one-ounce.
Installation of the barrel nut and handguard are straightforward. Install the barrel nut as instructed, slide on the handguard and screw in the mounting screws. Of course, for those who can’t settle for just any mounting screws, they also offer a titanium mounting screw upgrade as an option.
We did notice a tighter than usual fit between the barrel nut and the handguard than we are accustomed to, but V Seven states that the Hyper-Light magnesium handguard barrel nut interface tolerance should be tighter and that the handguard may need to be tapped on with a plastic or rubber hammer. We had to do just that with a half-pound plastic mallet, but it went on smoothly with just a series of light taps. V Seven recommends that if it still seems tight, applying a little bit of heat from a heat gun can also ease the handguard on.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that the Hyper-Light you see here was mated to one of V Seven’s 2055 Enlightened AR-15 Upper Receivers that was decked out with their Ultra-Light Port Door and Port Door Rod Upgrade. As you would expect from V Seven, the upper receiver is constructed out of an advanced lithium/aluminum alloy that is said to be lighter, stronger, more rigid and has greater corrosion resistance than standard 7075 T6 aluminum.
The handguard has a luxuriousness that is difficult to convey in words, but is obvious when touched. With pricing ranging between $269 to $309 depending on length, the Magnesium Hyper-Light’s price is reasonable considering the upgrade’s avant-garde design and its use of advanced materials. Would you call V Seven the preeminent materials innovators for your AR-15? We’d reckon so.