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diggsbakes 07-10-2010 12:05 AM

Mid-Length Handguards/Quad Rails
I was hoping some of ya'll could steer me towards a good, reasonably priced set of Mid-Length (9 inch) Quad-rail hand-guards.

It seems most everything is either "carbine" or "rifle" length. The only sets I'm finding at Midway and the like are Yankee Hill or Midwest Industries. I know they are good makers, but they are pricey and I'm maxing out the funds for this gun as it is.

Any economical suggestions would be appreciated.


Quentin 07-10-2010 01:27 AM

Well the most economical suggestion is - do you really need rails? Standard handguards do the job very well and you still can mount a light, etc. if you want. Many people who get rails don't really need them.

I'd give your existing handguards a second chance, for a few months, and over that time save up money for something of quality if you find that you actually do need rails.

I've had my middy about a year now and the desire for rails which was high at first ebbs over time. Now I'm glad I stayed with the original handguards. The money for rails went toward ammo instead.

mjkeat 07-10-2010 01:32 AM

Troy Extreme is a good rail for a decent price.

diggsbakes 07-10-2010 06:01 AM


Originally Posted by slowryde45 (Post 312716)
What price range are you trying to stay in, and do you want them to be FREE FLOAT or not?


I'd like to stay under $100, but I know that's not always possible. Preferably free float, but not imperative for this gun.

diggsbakes 07-10-2010 06:06 AM


Originally Posted by Quentin (Post 312733)
Well the most economical suggestion is - do you really need rails? Many people who get rails don't really need them.

Yes I need them or I wouldn't be looking.


I'd give your existing handguards a second chance, for a few months, and over that time save up money for something of quality if you find that you actually do need rails.
This is a new build so there are no existing hand-guards.

Thanks for the links Slo! ! !

Anyone else got a lead?

moshpit 07-10-2010 04:08 PM

UTG rails at cheaperthendirt are pretty much as cheap as it gets, but I'd HONESTLY think twice before using them. Simple bolt on rails onto the standard hanguards would cost a LOT less, maybe 20 bucks, and will give about the same life expectancy and abuse tolerances that the UTG rail system will without the downsides the UTG rails brings.

I only say this because I wasted 60 bucks on the extended UTG system and ended up paying 180 (on sale, would have been more like 340 bucks for the one I choose) for a DD system because of issues I encountered. Weight was only tolerable, but was not good at all, very heavy on the front end. Accuracy was badly affected by these rails as well, UTG doesn't free float and even worse, can cause barrel torquing, where even the smallest pressure against it can totally obliterate any zero you had.

mjkeat 07-10-2010 05:10 PM

I have no experience w/ UTG but see the brand at all the paintball and airsoft stores so I stayed away.

moshpit 07-10-2010 07:08 PM

This is why I offered an option I thought he may not have considered as yet. Bolt on rails. I also figured a little first hand experience with what his choice could lead him to might also help.

Edit: I promise I'm not a brand snob, but I did feel burned after everything was said and done by the UTG rails. Moving them over to an airsoft rifle lessened the burn significantly. I've also seen some pretty sweet setups with bolt-on rails for both lights and grips, which is the whole reason for rails to begin with. If one is going for the bottom of the barrel anyway, it pays to look at alternative options to accomplish the same goal.

Edit #2: Something like this for example: for 10 bucks for a pair of 7" rails before shipping. 12 bucks for an 11.22" rail section. While this option limits immediate mounting to the 6 and 12 o'clock, you can offset using appropriate angled mounts.

mjkeat 07-10-2010 07:42 PM


Originally Posted by slowryde45 (Post 313087)
WOW! Listen to you guys...the Diggs asked for "economical", not Daniel Defense or Troy or [insert manufacturer here].

And YES, UTG is associated with Airsoft and Paintball accessories and parts, too. They are also involved in parts for AR15, AK47, SKS, FAL, G3, M14, etc. and not just the Airsoft or Paintball versions of those pieces. For that matter, I've seen the locals around here running ACOGS, AIMPOINTS, and Eotechs on their Airsoft toys. :rolleyes: - UTG products

Do I recommend them? Well, let's say that there are 'better' choices out there, but those choices will cost more. Go back to my first reply to this thread, and I asked - what price range and whether or not he wanted FREE FLOAT.

As he pointed out that Yankee Hill and Midwest Industries were a bit 'pricey', UTG is a viable option, as they are in the next price category below Yankee Hill and Midwest Industries. The lowest price I've seen on Yankee Hill is around $99 - when they are on sale.
Yankee Hill Machine YHM Lightweight Tactical Free Float Mid Length

I know of a few folks who are presently running with UTG parts on their SUR's with no issues. And I know of a few who have run into issues with Yankee Hill, Midwest, Troy, Samson, Larue, Vltor, and even Daniel Defense - myself included. Luckily, most of those outfits will make it right if there is an issue and you haven't trashed the product while trying to install/uninstall it.

Not everyone out there has to have the latest brand-name product that is being reviewed in magazines, pushed by forums, etc. Not everyone needs them, either. For utility's sake, if brand-x quad rail works for what you want it to do, then by all means go for it. But if you need to have brand-y's NAME for everyone around you to see, or so you can tell everyone that you have it, and that's all you will use, because that's what you read in the latest gun-rag/forum/or your urban-SOCOM-mall-ninja buddy said so, or if you like to 'buy nice or buy twice' and can afford it, then by all means go buy that one. And yes, sometimes you do get what you pay for - but not always.

I'm not saying that one brand is better or worse than the other, or that you should or shouldn't use one or the other. Buy what YOU can afford, and that works for what YOU want it to do. Yes, there is a chance that what you try the first time may or may not work out. If not, return it (if you can), sell it, or chalk it up as learning experience, and go on until you figure it all out. There is no magic button (this isn't STAPLES).

I dont buy because of name or the latest craze. I purchased my LWRC before I had ever logged onto a forum and none of my friends own or even like guns. I did my research and came to the conclusion that the LWRC brand was GTG and worth every penny. My only mistake was not spending a little more for the next model up. That cost me twice if not 3 times what it originally would have cost. My most recent purchase I have done some work myself in order to get what I want w/o spending any money at all. Using parts I had lying around I added an AFG to an original style handguard. Not exactly what the guys over at M4carbine would recommend but whatever. It turned out nice and is very light. In that case I bought what I could afford, nothing. But in the case of Black Betty and the LWRC I saved and scrimped my way towards what I really wanted and was proud of. Usually when something has a following its for a good reason. For instance Magpul. THey know what they are doing and make great functional products that aid in accuracy and ease of use. My 13" Troy Extreme rails I found cheap around $150 on sale. Bought one then another because they work great for me and are built w/i spec, light as all get out and thin enough to wrap my hand around in order to get that nice solid forward grip. Why spend $800 on something marginal when you can spend $1000 on something thatll do anything and last forever? Kinda like off brand ketchup. It may cost a few cents less but it sure tastes funny.

Quentin 07-10-2010 07:57 PM

Yeah this is tough for all of us. I tend to agree with Mosh because usually when I go cheap I regret it a few months down the road. Anyway, lots of solutions here and they run the gammit from buying cheap handguards to cheap UTG rails to going a little higher for something of better quality and lower weight. Now Diggs can make his choice because what we think doesn't really matter. (But let us know how it goes!)

I would say be careful of putting a VFG on cheap rails, I've heard of them twisting too much and causing the gas tube to bend too much until the carrier key slams into it causing all kinds of grief. You definitely don't want much flex there.

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