Attachments can help make the use of your firearms a lot easier. From distracting strobe lights, to pinpoint accurate lasers, they help give preppers a “peace of mind” with their weapons.
You might be thinking “why spend the extra money on accessories?”. You don’t need a car to get from point A to point B, but it sure makes life easier on you. The same goes for attachments, you don’t need them, but they make operating a firearm easier.
In this article, we’ll discuss the three best firearm attachments for each type of firearm; rifles, handguns, and shotguns. While the types of attachments you can get for your firearm may be limited, the brands are endless.
Before we get into the brand breakdown of attachments, let’s go over the most used weapon attachment types.
Table of Contents
Rifle (AR / AK Platforms)
The AR / AK platform is arguably the most customizable weapon system in a prepper’s arsenal. A lot of people think of the AR as the AR-15, but there are multiple different ARs that shoot different calibers (such as the AR-10).
Some attachments, however, are not as useful as others. Because of this, we’ll break it down into the top five attachments we recommend for AR and AK owners.
ARs and AKs are two very different rifle platforms, but that doesn’t mean that the attachments are. Most attachments are made to be used on a picatinny rail system, which are offered on both AR and AK models alike.
Make sure if you’re shopping for your AK, you adjust the size of the caliber to 7.62 and not the .223 (or 5.56) caliber of the AR models. Whatever attachments (if any) you decide to use for your rifle, make sure that they fit your specific needs.
While your uses for assault rifles change, so must your attachments. If you’re going to be in the wilderness most of the time, a tac-light might not be as much of a use for you as it would in an urban environment (although they can be useful at night anywhere).
Don’t be “tacticool” when it comes to attachments. Remember, the more attachments you have, the more weight you’ll have to carry around.
Another factor to consider when looking to add on to your collection of attachments for your rifle is your magazines. I’ve found that Magpul PMAGs are incredibly reliable, as well as durable for a high-stress environment.
For added assistance, the Magpul Mag Assist enhancement fits on the end of your magazine, so when they are face-down in your kit you can pull them out easier.
In a firefight, your hands get sweaty from the nerves, making it difficult to reach for a new one. Any attachment that helps you in a firefight is your friend, do yourself a favor and invest in them.
Slings are also a great add-on for your rifle, making it easier to keep accountability of your weapon when SHTF and you need to transition to use both of your hands. I recommend using a two-point sling (I like the S2Delta), because you can transition from your rifle, to just your hands with a pull of a cord.
Once you pull the cord, the weapon is tight on your body, keeping you accountable for it so nobody can grab it from you. To transition back to your rifle, simply pull another cord (read the simple instructions to learn how to use it). They’re very simple, and effective to use.
The LPVO, or low-power variable optic, was a game changer for modern combat rifles. In its typical incarnation, these optics provide a remarkable range of capability.
Nearly as quick and as usable as a red dot at close range while retaining the capability for excellent target recognition and assessment at longer ranges combined with a wide variety of precision or speed oriented reticle setups, the LPVO can definitely be thought of as the premiere gun sight of our era.
from the best manufacturers, these scopes are incredibly robust, easy to use and highly adaptable, and perfect on carbines and rifles alike except those intended for the shortest range engagements or the longest.
Perhaps the only downsides to LPVOs are that they are larger, heavier and bulkier than red dots, and they require more investment in training to get the most out of them and to maximize their capability quickly under pressure.
They’re also, unfortunately, quite expensive but believe me when I tell you they are worth every penny.
Red dot (or reflex) sights, and holographic sites have long ruled the roost when it comes to close quarters shooting. Affording an unbeatable combination of instinctive aiming, good precision and lightning speed modern examples of this optic are incredibly durable and totally at home on carbines that will likely be used at close range, say 150 yards and in.
Compared to traditional iron sights, red dot sights greatly simplify the process of aligning the firearm with the target while providing greater target and situational awareness.
For small targets, moving targets and other low percentage shots red dots provide immediate enhancement compared to legacy sighting systems.
Whether you prefer aimpoint, Trijicon, EOtech, Vortex or Holosun there is a red dot out there that is perfect for your specific application.
Many of them even come ready to mount with a co-witness solution right out of the box, no additional mounting hardware required. For sheer performance pertaining to the average user, there is hardly any better investment that you can make for a modern rifle
The ACOG (Advanced Combat Optical Gunsight) is used by military service members around the world (including me).
One thing I love about the ACOG, is that most of them don’t use batteries. Instead, their reticle is illuminated by the radioactive decay of tritium (don’t worry, the radiation is safe).
The average lifespan of the tritium inside of the ACOG is 10-15 years, which is a great feature because you won’t have to use a single battery!
From a prepper’s standpoint, this makes the ACOG a great asset, because you won’t need to fetch new batteries for your optic.
In case of an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse), your ACOG will still work, because it doesn’t rely on electrical wiring used by most attachable sights. This is another reason why an ACOG should be on your “most wanted” list for your AR / AK.
The brand I recommend for ACOGs, is the same brand I have on my M4A1 carbine that I use as an Infantryman. “Trijicon” is by far the most popular ACOG brand on the market.
They even have a contract with the U.S. Government, supplying agencies and military branches such as the U.S. Army, and the United States Marine Corps. There’s a reason why Infantrymen love ACOGs, because they’re durable and they work.
I remember one time, I had fallen down a 15 foot drop off at night (because military night vision optics have terrible depth-perception) and my M4 sling had come off me, causing my M4 to smash against a large boulder.
After recovering it, my M4 still worked, and my Trijicon ACOG kept its zero. While all Trijicon models vary in shapes, sizes, and reticle shapes, all of them are recommended for your consideration.
The one that I’m personally familiar with is the TA11-D-100291. The average price for this model is $1,600, making it pretty expensive for an optic on your rifle.
There are other models that are less expensive on their website, but if you want a quality optic that you can rely on for years, Trijicon is your answer. This model offers a vertical BDC (Bullet Drop Compensator) that is effective up to 800m (2,624ft.) with a chevron above it.
BDCs are extremely useful in combat, because you don’t have to adjust your elevation dial (AKA “dope”) to accurately engage your targets.
BUIS (Back-Up Iron Sights)
BUIS are very important for your rifle, if you plan on attaching an aftermarket optic. In reference to the ACOG above, BUIS offer a short to mid-range solution to accurately engage targets, while your ACOG is used for mid to long-range engagements.
Obviously, you won’t need batteries for your BUIS, so this is also a bonus for preppers. The less electricity you depend on when you bug out, the better.
I use BUIS on my M4, and I recommend that if anyone attaches an optic on their AR / AK rifle, they do the same. If an EMP detonates, and you’re using an optic that relies on electronic wiring (EOTech Reflex sights for example), your optic is useless.
Then, you’ll have an overly expensive paperweight. It’s not recommended to use a battery-operated optic, however if you decide to, make sure you have BUIS.
There are many places that you can attach BUIS on your rifle, I personally recommend mounting the Magpul 45-degree BUIS. This way, you may engage your targets at long range, and simply rotate your rifle 45-degrees to engage short to mid-range targets.
BUIS are only as good as their zero, however, so make sure when you mount them you zero them accordingly. A good distance to zero your BUIS to is 200m (656ft.). This is so you can engage targets at a longer range if your optic gets damaged.
Part of the holy Upgrade Trifecta, alongside the red dot and sling, a bright, durable flashlight should be considered a mandatory upgrade for any modern fighting rifle, but particularly one that will be used for self-defense. the ability to illuminate a threat for the purposes of positive identification is absolutely mandatory and the importance of which cannot be overstated.
But good weapon mounted lights are an investment, not just due to the expense of the system but also the necessary investment in required secondary hardware such as mounts, switches and potentially upgraded handguards.
A good light will be extremely bright, possess excellent throw range, be durable enough to withstand abuse in the form of sharp impacts, recoil and drops, and also intuitive and easy to activate and further manipulate.
It is a lot to ask from a single system, but you can be assured that you’ll have a good one if you pick up a model from Surefire, Streamlight or Cloud Defensive.
A quality, usable swing is the final component in the Holy Trifecta of long gun accessories. A sling is to a long gun as a holster is to a handgun. If it is going to be used for any serious purpose, and even a whole lot of non-serious purposes, you have to have a sling.
The sling will help you hold and control the rifle, and also give you a place to put it securely when you need to go hands-free for any reason, be it interacting with other tools and gear, climbing or something else.
Slings, like the guns that they carry, have come a long way over the decades. From traditional, non-adjustable carry straps through the era of the complicated entangle prone 3-point tactical sling to the emergence of the single point sling and finally the current, reigning champion of the useful sling, the quick-adjustable two-point sling.
Arguably, all such slings have a weapon system that they are best suited for, but you will rarely outdo the ease of use or adaptability of the quick adjust two pointer.
Most modern carbines come out of the box with either built-in sling attachment points or sockets for quick detachable sling swivels. either can work so long as you have the necessary mating hardware for the sling itself.
The best examples of this breed remain the Blue Force Gear Vickers Sling and all its many variations and the Viking Tactics VTAC, though other great options are made by Magpul, Armageddon Gear and others.
Modern shooters are definitely spoiled by the ergonomics of factory guns, but for legacy systems or just in the interest of optimizing a firearm for a specific user you should not be afraid to switch out the stock when called upon.
As one of the primary interfaces between shooter and rifle, the stock is crucially important. a cheek weld that is comfortable, sustainable and optimized for the typical position that a rifle will be used in is essential for extracting the most performance.
Improving the fit between shooter and stock will afford more control, and that control will translate to more manageable recoil, quicker shot to shot times and better accuracy.
For precision or semi-precision guns like DMRs and SPRs, stocks can be had with fine adjustable length of pull, comb height and other critical dimensions to perfectly fit the rifle to the shooter.
Other stock options might include a super compact telescopic or folding nature for reducing the footprint of the gun when in storage, sometimes necessary for moving with the rifle into or through sensitive or non permissive environments.
Vertical Grip / Angled Grip
A vertical foregrip, colloquially called a vert grip, is seen as a slightly aging but eminently useful attachment for enhancing control over the rifle.
Seasoned pros also know that a vert grip can afford much stability to the user and a variety of unconventional or compromised shooting positions also.
Originally intended to give the shooter a place to grip a rifle that had a short forend completely covered up by other attachments such as flashlights, bipods, IR lights and lasers and other such accoutrement, the vert grip stuck around even as handguards got longer and longer again in order to provide better ergonomics and more real estate for mounting other accessories.
Although gripping one in the manner of a ball bat is frowned upon as passé and inefficient, the vert grip remains a sturdy option when used with the modern technique, and also comes in quite handy when shooting around barricades, from sitting positions or when the need to quickly brace the rifle against obstruction is required.
If the purpose of your rifle is for mainly close to medium range engagements, I recommend the Magpul Rail Vertical Grip.
On the opposite end, if you expect more of your engagements to be at a longer range and you don’t want to use a bipod, I recommend the Magpul Angled Fore Grip. The best feature of angled grips, is their ability to maintain a “vertical palm” grip, while adding comfortability.
As they say, everything old is new again, and that is definitely true when it comes to the equipage of firearms. Short barrels became passé, and are once again popular thanks to improvements and cartridges and manufacturing.
But, rifles with itty bitty 10 inch barrels, or even 8 or 7 inch barrels, have a precious little room on their handguards for most folks to grip them surely. If one was in a hurry, was struck or jostled it is not out of the question that the support hand could slip in front of the muzzle during firing with obviously disastrous results.
A low profile, lightweight handstop can prevent this unhappy scenario by providing a solid abutment at the very end of the handguard that will keep the non-shooting hand safely away from the business end of the rifle.
Alternatively, a hand stop can be used as a reference point on the opposite end of the handguard closest to the receiver to ensure quick and repeatable placement of the non-shooting hand to maximize consistency well also providing some mechanical advantage over the rifle.
Handstops, like every other attachment on this list, are available in a wide variety of mounting Solutions to fit any application and any type of forend. Bolt on picatinny rail types remain popular as are MLOK and Keymod versions.
Most rifles you buy will already come with a muzzle brake from the manufacturer. However, buying an aftermarket muzzle brake allows you to have more control over your recoil.
Door breach muzzle brakes offer another way to incapacitate your enemies, as well as breaching capabilities while protecting your muzzle. Without a muzzle brake, putting your barrel up to a door to breach it can cause damage to the tip of it.
An effective way of incapacitating enemies at close range is called a “muzzle thump”. This method utilizes your muzzle brake to strike your enemy with your barrel like a spear. Using a muzzle thump is a very useful technique when an enemy appears unexpectedly in front of you.
When you strike your enemy with your barrel, you’re delivering a powerful blow that can cause extreme pain, and can still fire your weapon shortly after without having to lay a hand on them.
With a door breaching muzzle brake attached, a muzzle thump to your enemy can kill them without having to fire a single round. This is due to the “teeth” on the end, although they’re made to embed in a doorway before breaching.
For this attachment, I recommend looking at buying the SHREWD – AR-15 #5 Muzzle Brake. Shrewd has been my go-to for muzzle brakes since my enthusiasm for rifles began (don’t worry, they make them for AK models too).
With a reduced recoil, as well as an added physical impact effect, muzzle brakes are well worth their investment. They can be expensive, but you don’t have to buy an aftermarket muzzle brake if you don’t want to. If your rifle doesn’t come with one (which is rare), I highly suggest you get one yourself.
Rifle (Sniper / Hunting Platform)
While there’s not as many popular attachments for a hunting/sniper rifle as there are for its assault rifle counterparts, attachments can make your long-range shots a lot more comfortable.
I preach that it’s not the hammer that puts in the nail, it’s the person swinging the hammer. While this is very true, any added comfortability (or compatibility) to your rifle can increase your accuracy for long-distance engagements.
Hunting/sniper rifles are a prepper’s best friend, especially when bugging out into the wilderness. Most rifles cost a good amount of money, so some people might be hesitant to spend more to get attachments and accessories.
Let’s face it though, spending a few extra dollars to be a lot more comfortable shooting your rifle seems self-explanatory.
While not absolutely needed, the bipod adds a lot of stability to your rifle. I don’t have to tell you why you should get a bipod, but I will tell you not to go cheap when buying one.
A spring-loaded bipod is a great option for preppers, because it requires minimal set up. When looking for a spring-loaded bipod, shop for quality, not price.
Nothing can be more frustrating when you’re moving through thick brush with your rifle, and your bipod springs open, causing your rifle to snag on vines (I speak from experience).
A lot of your time with a hunting/sniper rifle will be walking through the woods, so take into consideration how heavy the bipod is as well. Any added weight will easily be noticed when you’re walking for hours.
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A brand that I’ve learned to trust after years of use, is Harris. For my long-range engagements, as well as trekking through the woods, I have had very little issues with Harris bipods. In my line of work, we aren’t exactly gentle with our equipment.
If Harris bipods can withstand the rigorous trials that I’ve put them through in my line of work, they’re sure to withstand whatever you throw at them as a prepper.
An eminently useful upgrade when shooting at higher altitudes or from any position where one might be called upon to engage at extreme angles, an angle indicator is an attachment that will at a glance provide a shooter with the approximate inclination or declination of the bore.
More than many other factors, shooting at steep angles can easily bamboozle a shooter because it will substantially affect the firing solution and do so dramatically at longer ranges.
Instead of relying upon field expedient methods, guesswork or the long, slow and highly laborious methodology of developing a feel for this variable an angle indicator can provide useful data that can be immediately put to use.
A small bubble level designed for clamping onto a picatinny rail atop the receiver is another nearly mandatory inclusion for the well-equipped precision rifle carried by a serious shooter.
Similar to the angle indicator but functioning on a different axis, a level or anti-cant device, is quite similar to common bubble levels employed by construction workers, DIYers and handymen the world over, and will at a glance inform the shooter if they’re rifle is canted or rolling to one side or the other.
It might sound like a petty concern, but this cant if uncorrected is easily capable of spoiling a shot, especially at the extended ranges that such rifles as these are used.
Although comparatively simple among all of the other accessories that might be required on a precision rifle, it is nonetheless worth investing in a good one that can withstand the rigors of field usage.
Bullet Sleeve / Cheek Rest Combo
Most of your engagements with a hunting/sniper rifle will be with your cheek glued to your buttstock. If you find yourself running low on full magazines, it can be tedious to have to dig in your BOB (or pockets) to retrieve more rounds.
A bullet sleeve slides onto your buttstock, allowing you to access more rounds with ease if you need to without having to step away from your rifle.
When your cheek rests on your buttstock for a long period of time, it can become quite sore (or even bruise in my case), making it difficult to comfortably deliver rounds down range.
For this reason, I bought the GVN Portable Adjustable Tactical Buttstock Shell Holder Cheek Rest. The only downside about the one I had purchased, is the smell it retains after sweating on it. Other than that, it’s done its job just fine for me and I’m sure it will for you as well.
Cheek rests can also play an important role in eye-relief (how far your eye should be off your scope), making it more comfortable to place your cheek in the right position.
With the combination of the bullet sleeve, along with a cheek rest, the GVN is a great deal for preppers. Any added comfortability can make a huge difference when your cheek is glued to your buttstock for hours on end.
When you shoot an upwards of 20-30 rounds per day for multiple days on end through a high-caliber rifle, recoil pads are a great luxury. Recoil pads are a slip-on attachment that you add to the end of your buttstock on your rifle, reducing the recoil felt in your shoulder pocket when shooting.
There are many different brands of recoil pads, many of which are great. However, I don’t recommend using a gel-filled one as a prepper. Any puncture or tear in the pad will take away its cushioning, rendering it useless.
Most synthetic buttstocks have a cushion already embedded into them, but they aren’t enough protection for avid shooters. If you shoot more than 50 rounds through your rifle at the range every time you practice, recoil pads are more than worth their investment.
The only downside I’ve found with them, is you need to compensate for your eye relief because your scope will be about an inch further from your eye than it would be without the pad.
Throughout my time shooting high-caliber rifles, I’ve grown to love my LimbSaver AirTech Slip-On Recoil Pad. The added cushioning has definitely saved my shoulder from the trauma associated with shooting.
I bought one back in 2015, and I haven’t had to replace it yet. I’ve become very impressed with its durability and comfortability, and I’m sure it’ll do the same for you.
Shotguns (Tactical Platform)
Shotguns are a great choice of firearm for home defense, though you might destroy your house shooting at an intruder.
I won’t include hunting shotguns for this category, because if you’re going to add attachments to a shotgun, you’ll more than likely purchase a tactical one. Tactical shotguns have many uses, but CQC (Close Quarters Combat) is the most frequent reason why they’re used.
Tactical shotguns are a great option for defending your home, or bug out location. Although not all of the possible attachments were named, the ones that were are the ones that are the best suit for your shotgun needs.
The receiver mounted shotshell carrier, more commonly referred to as a shell caddy for shell carrier, is a borderline mandatory upgrade for most combat oriented shotguns. The vast majority of shotguns are low capacity firearms, usually carrying anywhere between five and seven rounds, with perhaps nine rounds available for longer guns.
Considering that ammunition usually goes pretty fast in a firefight, keeping fresh ammunition moving into the gun is imperative, but typically difficult because most common shotguns are loaded one round at a time.
Shortening the distance between spare ammunition and the gun itself is an excellent way to speed up the process and either keep the gun topped off or get it back into action as quickly as possible.
A receiver mounted shell caddy that carries several additional shot shells is a great way to do this with only a modest increase in weight and bulk.
There is a huge variety to be found for these devices, with some being made of hard plastic or metal and permanently affixed to the gun through the use of screws, while others are made out of nylon and elastic, usually with a velcro backing so that they may be quickly stripped and replaced as needed.
Still others seek to combine these two approaches, being a hard, metallic carrier that is quickly detachable and replaceable on a fixed mounting point.
A match saver is a specialized type of shell caddy that usually holds a single shot shell or sometimes two directly ahead of the ejection port.
In the instance that the shotgun goes completely empty in the course of shooting with an immediate, emergency reload required to solve a problem, it is the height of simplicity to move a shell from the match saver to the chamber by loading it directly through the ejection port located adjacent to it.
Although these devices got their start in competition circles, various tactical users of shotguns have seen the obvious utility that they afford. Defensively minded civilians, particularly those using low capacity shotguns, also rely on these devices frequently.
Although commonly available, many of these devices are a universal fit, meaning they require a little bit of ingenuity and adaptation to fix them to most shotguns. they generally work best on semi auto shotguns with long, immobile forends but it is possible to adapt them to pump actions with a little bit of ingenuity.
There is no reason that a modern shotgun should be stuck with a bead sight alone unless you were out duck hunting or shooting clays.
The demands of a tactical situation, be it on the battlefield, on the perimeter or defending Your home from intruders means that your citing system must be up to snuff for fast, accurate and most importantly sure alignment.
Also, it is difficult or impossible for the average user to regulate and zero a bead site to the point of impact of various loads of buckshot and slugs in particular. Sure, you might know your holds well enough to get away with it at very close range but this will fall apart quickly once you are beyond point blank.
Instead, opt for rifle or buckhorn sites at the very least, and preferably a full front sight post with aperture rear that will provide you with a fast, clean sight picture and give you the precision needed to zero your sights for any ammunition.
Don’t think shotguns need good sighting systems, particularly optics? Think again. though shotguns utilizing buckshot afford better hit probabilities than rifles or handguns at the typical ranges that they are employed it is not the mythical fire hose of lead that many people think they are.
you still need to aim a shotgun, and if you need to aim you want a set of sights or an optic that will give you maximum advantage possible.
Accordingly, a red dot is the ideal type of gun sight for a shotgun. If aperture sights are good, red dots are even better for all of the reasons we outlined above when employing them on carbines.
Though most shotguns made today feature a picatinny rail or direct mounting system already atop The receiver, an awful lot of legacy shotguns do not, meaning you’ll have to install one yourself or send it to a gunsmith for professional installation before mounting your sight.
Try not to give in to the temptation of optic mounting solutions that mount via the trigger group pins or some cheesy clamp-on barrel shroud. Any optic, no matter how good, is only as good as its mount.
Just like on a carbine, a sling is an essential auction for a shotgun. Unlike a carbine, more care must be taken when setting up the mounting point for use with a sling on a shotgun so that it does not interfere with maneuverability of the gun when reloading.
Regrettably, most shotguns forward sling mounting point is an old fashioned sling swivel stud at the far end of the magazine tube. While workable, this changes the balance of the gun when slung. A better option is to use a mount that clamps around both the barrel and the magazine tube if there’s enough room to support it.
For autoloaders and pump actions alike, particularly legacy sporting guns or ones specifically designed for hunting, magazine capacity is often sharply limited, usually three or four rounds in the tube.
Though this might be entirely adequate for the average tactical situation, more ammo is usually better so long as it does not compromise the length or weight of the gun unduly.
The solution is usually simple. Magazine extensions typically screw on and provide an additional round but sometimes as many as three, dramatically increasing the onboard payload. Keep in mind that these extensions, while typically easy to install, often require the use of a longer, stronger magazine spring and sometimes a follower for good measure.
Semi-Auto handguns have become more and more popular in the civilian sector since WWII (although they’ve been around earlier than that), and for a good reason. Most of them are reliable, and have a higher ammunition capacity than its revolver counterpart.
Semi-auto handguns are far more compatible with attachments than revolvers, but that doesn’t mean you need every attachment on the market for them.
I didn’t include revolvers on my article for attachments for one reason, there’s really not a lot of attachments worth spending money on for a revolver.
Most attachments you’ll find for revolvers are usually cheap knock-offs that will stop working (or break) after a short period of time. My advice is not to spend a lot of money (or time) looking for attachments for your revolvers.
Semi-auto handguns have a variety of options for attachments. You don’t need them to make your handgun do what it’s intended to do, but some attachments will make the work much easier.
Extended magazines are also an option for semi-auto handguns, but make sure you get a magazine compatible with the weapon you’ll use it for. Always shop for quality, not just for price.
A WML, or weapon-mounted light, is a worthy upgrade for most duty or self-defense pistols when weight and bulk is not a high priority consideration.
Compared to using a flashlight and the supporting hand in tandem with the pistol, a wml greatly streamlines the accessibility and usefulness of the light for positive identification of potential threats prior to shooting.
Though convenient and easy to use in a straightforward way, proper and safe usage of a wml requires considerable training and practice to prevent dangerous searching with the light.
Anywhere that the light is pointed the bore is likewise pointed coaxially, so utilizing a WML safely for intermittent navigational light requires a skilled user.
Nonetheless, there is no substitute when one requires a controllable light source in conjunction with the pistol, and it is the only solution for operating both if one hand is out of action or engaged with another task, such as calling for emergency services for instance.
A visible laser can be a smart upgrade on a handgun. in times of low light or when shooting from a compromised position, projecting your aiming point onto the target can make the difference between a botched shot and a good hit.
Don’t believe the hype about visible lasers serving as a deterrent to attackers, as this is a fringe benefit if anything, and that is assuming it happens at all. Despite this, lasers are definitely more than a novelty.
Laser sighting systems are available in a variety of profiles. Models that clamp onto the accessory rail of a dust cover, replacement guide rod systems, grip integrated systems and combination laser and light combos are all on the market and all viable, though for serious usage the rail mounted or grip integrated models have the most promise and the best reliability.
And in stark contrast to what the uninitiated might tell you, lasers require significant training and regular practice in order to remain efficient with them. They do not replace marksmanship skill, and they have shortcomings as with any other type of sight.
Pretty much every pistol on the market comes with iron sights, but even today many of them do not come with night sights.
Night sights are just iron sights with luminescent inserts, typically a small vial of tritium but sometimes glow-in-the-dark paint, that allow the user to visually locate and index the iron sights even in conditions of low or no light.
Although some might say that the prerequisite of a weapon mounted light, which will starkly backlight the iron sights in use, obviates the need for night sights they remain a popular option with legitimate benefits, as there are plenty of conditions where a threat might be positively identified but the sights themselves are not easy to see.
this is one attachment that will require a specialized installation tool and a little bit of know-how to properly and securely install without damaging them and is best left to the attention of an armorer or gunsmith
Grip sleeves add a more comfortable feel to your handgun, which can make a big difference with accuracy. While relatively cheap, most grip sleeves are durable and lightweight. This makes them a great attachment a prepper’s handgun, because most preppers spend their money on bug out tools and have little more to spend on weapon attachments.
A grip sleeve can also help you handle your weapon when your hands (or gloves) are slippery because of dirt, water, or a combination of the two.
Think of it as tire, you could technically drive with bald tires, but a tire with more grip makes a big difference in handling. The type of grip sleeve you get depends on your hand size and style, but a great brand for grip sleeves is GVN.
My personal favorite is the GVN Tactical Rubber Grip Sleeve, due to its light-weight design, and finger mold. For my finger size, the molding of the sleeve seems to hug them, which makes it so much more comfortable to squeeze and shoot with.
With grip sleeves, however, it all depends on your hand size and shape. Give GVN a look, they tend to have the best selection for people with all shapes and sizes of hands.
Attachments and accessories are a great investment if you want the added luxury to help you with your self-defense needs.
The biggest factor you should watch for when you’re looking at getting a new attachment for your weapon, is the reviews that follow it. I’ve learned from experience not to buy something for your weapon just because it looks cool and it’s cheap. If it looks too good to be true, most of the time it is.
Don’t be “tacticool”, and go buy all the attachments that you can fit on your weapon. First, you’ll be laughed off the shooting range when you go practice by the veterans. Second, you’ll regret doing so when you need to carry all the added weight for miles.
When looking for attachments that run on batteries, try to look for the ones that use AA or AAA batteries. The more common the battery, the more chances you’ll have at replacing them when SHTF and looters clean out store shelves.
The best attachment you can get for your weapon, is the one (or many) attachments that best suit you to be able to engage your enemy with ease. Try not to spend too much on them, however, because the money could be used to stockpile on more weapons (or ammunition).
Remember, it’s always shooter’s preference. This article is simply to guide you in the right direction when you’re looking for your next (or first) attachment for your weapon.
I’m an active-duty infantryman with the U.S. Army, and I’ve served a combined-service of over 5 years. Throughout my career, I’ve learned various survival techniques, as well as self-defense techniques. I specialize in weapons, long-range reconnaissance, distance shooting, and long-term isolation survival. I’m a very conservative, very “to the point” kind of person.