You’ve taken the time to buy or build a left handed AR-15. Now what? Depending on if you bought or built your rifle , you should probably invest in backup parts. Both left handed and right handed.
As handy as it is, I hope that I can continue to build and buy left handed rifles. However, there comes a point when you need to have a backup plan, and there are three avenues to take:
- Invest in extra proprietary left handed parts
- Invest in right handed parts to supplement your left handed parts
- Invest in both
Invest in extra left handed parts
Personally, I have at least one backup left handed bolt carrier group and 1 left handed upper. This helps in two ways. Most importantly, if something breaks and it’s not readily available, I’ve got the hard part solved. If I’m starting a new project, I can continue if said parts are not available. But don’t get complacent, and try to get these backups ordered. I should also get one extra left handed bolt, as these will wear out or break more often than there carrier.
Invest in right handed parts
This may not be a popular opinion, but it’s a good alternative to keep your gear up and running. Right handed upper receivers and bolt carrier groups are usually easy to come by, and in a pinch, it’s the only two things that are demonstrably different. Sure, you will get gassed in the face more often, especially if you are shooting suppressed, but that’s better than not having a functional rifle.
Invest in both
Since I’ve got my backup left handed upper and left handed bolt carrier group, I am now getting a right handed set to have as another backup. Keep them ready and available, and sell them later on if you need to. But in other words, be prepared. The rifle and the parts are a consumable, and if you run them hard, have replacement parts ready.
When times are tough, and parts are hard to come by, you’ll thank yourself for being ahead of the game, and not behind it. Have parts, get training, and shoot often.