What To Consider When Looking for a Bolt Carrier Group

Nov 4th 2019

What To Consider When Looking for a Bolt Carrier Group

When you are shopping for a sporting rifle platform you have a dizzying amount of considerations to make. You need to make decisions about form and function. That is, what will you be using the rifle for? Will it be used in heavy competition or in the brush hunting hogs? Will your gun be strictly a range gun or will you need to include components that are specifically resilient to corrosive and abrasive agents like water, salt, dirt, and other debris? You will have spec after spec to go through about the caliber you want to go with, the types of rails, the length and weight of the barrel, trigger assemblies and more. You’ll be fitting out a platform all the way down to the types of accessories you want to include with it - things that are as much cosmetic as they are functional, like lights, grips, optics, and mounts. You’ll also need to make choices about things you simply like or don’t like, and when you’re shopping for a sporter, it can be easy to lose sight of certain aspects of the gun that deserve a keen edge of attention.

The case in point is the bolt carrier group. It would be unfair to say that the bolt carrier group is overlooked - it isn’t. No one is going to say that the bolt carrier group they chose for their rifle took a backseat to some other feature, or even that it can be forgotten. It’s more than the bolt carrier group is a piece of equipment that doesn’t draw attention to itself in league with its significance. It simply is the hardest working moving piece of the rifle, and perhaps the most mission-critical piece of all. You’ll be faced with choices over style and function, and you’ll have to decide among options such as a Bootleg or a BCM bolt carrier group, so it’s important to do some homework.

The bolt carrier group on your rifle is responsible for the basic operation of your gun. It houses and holds the firing pin, the extractor, and ejector, and is responsible for the loading, firing, ejecting of the rounds and for cycling of the action. In short, every time you pull the trigger, you rely on the smooth and systemic operation of the bolt carrier group to use your rifle as intended. Not only is the bolt carrier group in your rifle hardworking and engaged every time you fire off a round, but it is also subject to intense pressure, heat, and wear. All these things being front and center, it’s important to make a wise investment in a quality bolt carrier group (and perhaps several spares) when you are shopping for our building a rifle. Here at White Knight Supply, we can help make the choice easier by offering a wide range of bolt carrier groups for multiple platforms. You’ll be looking at a lot of different options for equipment and brands like Black Rain, DoubleStar and Fail Zero. You might even be considering a BCM bolt carrier group, so you’ll need to consider some aspects of the group as well when making the choice, such as the design and the coating.

In terms of coating of the bolt carrier group, the idea is to give the bolt carrier group a high degree of dry lubrication, the right hardness to thwart excessive wear, and the ability to prevent loss of reliability due to high temperatures. Some of the coatings you will come across are phosphate, nitride, and nickel.

Phosphate coatings are one of the more common of these, and phosphate coated bolt carrier groups are fairly resistant to heat and abrasion, but they will require additional lubrication which adds up to extra wear from fouling, and they will need to be cleaned more frequently as a result. Another advantage of this type of coating is the cost. Nitride coatings are fairly common as well, and their chief asset is in their extreme hardness, which gives them an added degree of resistance to abrasion. A nitride-coated bolt carrier group is a good choice for someone who needs a bolt carrier group to stand up to an elevated level of wear and tear. As for nickel coatings, though they are particularly expensive and not as hard as the former two, they offer a very specific advantage in that they have a high degree of dry lubricity. With that lessened level of friction during operation, the bolt carrier group will not necessarily be subjected to the same temperatures as it might be. A nickel coated bolt carrier group also will not need as much lubrication as the other two coatings. A lack of such need for lubrication means there will be less oil to gum up the action and attract dirt and fouling - subjecting the bolt carrier group to less abrasion and making it easier, and less pressing, to clean.

It’s important to go with the right bolt carrier group for your needs, whether that piece of equipment is a BCM bolt carrier group, a Fail Zero or a BCG from Patriot Ordnance. In truth, a shooter might want to keep and maintain several bolt carrier groups for different scenarios and environments, which will also give their rifle a sense of redundant protection. Either way, when you’re looking for a bolt carrier group, you’re in the right place right here at White Knight Supply. Check out our selection of bolt carrier groups and you’ll be sure to find the one (or ones) that are right for your shooting endeavors.