Battle Arms Development gets more B.A.D. A.S.S.
By: Steve Coulston
In the every changing world of AR parts and accessories it can sometimes be difficult to keep up with the latest trend or next best thing. Like many red blooded, 2A loving Americans, I enjoy tinkering with my AR style rifles. That is one thing that makes them so appealing. Swap out parts, change the look, modify the optics, go with a different caliber, build one for precision shooting, or one for home defense. The list goes on. With all the options on the market, the AR can be personalized anyway you like. I have used a ton of different parts from lots of manufactures. I enjoy the variety with one exception. I have said it before and I will say it again, “There is one part however, that always remains the same on my ARs. The safety selector. And that safety is always B.A.D. A.S.S. I always use the Battle Arms Development, Ambidextrous Safety Selector in my ARs. No exceptions. Period.”
It would be easy for me to assume every AR lover has heard of Battle Arms Development, but for those who have not need to get up to speed. Battle Arms Development or B.A.D. was born in 2009 and currently resides in Henderson, Nevada. They develop and market a variety of tools for the M14/M1A/M1 Garand and AR/M16/M4 style weapon platforms. As you can guess, one of their biggest sellers, if not their biggest seller is their Ambidextrous Safety Selector, also known as (yup, you guessed it) the B.A.D. A.S.S. For such a small part, it lives up to its name and then some.
The B.A.D. A.S.S. series of safety selectors is machined from 12L14 bar stock steel. It is then Magnanese Phosphate finished and is heat treated to a Rockwell hardness of 48-52. The levers feature aggressive tactile groves for positive feel and engagement. The corners are rounded for comfort and to prevent snags or cut fingers. This is important, because other than the trigger, the safety is probably the most manipulated human interface part on the firearm. It needs to work every time, over thousands of repetitions.
The B.A.D. A.S.S. has two detachable sides, (5) lever styles to make up (25) different lever combinations. Like the AR it is installed in, this safety is adaptable. For example, you can set up your safety with a standard lever on the left side and a short or thin lever on the right side so the lever doesn’t touch or rub your trigger finger as you change the condition of the firearm. Very cool feature that can be tailored for each individual.
Installation is easy and really not much different than installing other safety selectors. The B.A.D. A.S.S. comes with all the bits and pieces needed for the install to include: The selector levers, machine screw, KNS hardened stainless steel safety detent and star wrench. Moving on…
So the B.A.D. A.S.S. has been around for a while and is pretty much the standard when it comes to safety selectors. So how does one go about upgrading it with more B.A.D. A.S.S. ery ? Answer: Shorten the throw from 90 degrees to 45 degrees. I have both 90 and 45 degree variants in various ARs, but the 45 is by far my favorite. My first exposure to the B.A.D. A.S.S. 45 was when I purchased my AXTS AX556 billet ambi-lower a few years back. It came with the 45 degree selector lever installed. This is truly a match made in AR heaven and looks very bad ass. Pun intended. The 45 degree throw allows me to quickly and easily flip back and forth between “safe” and “fire” with my firing hand thumb without adjusting my firing hand grip. It also removes that annoying trigger finger bite of traditional 90 degree throw levers.
There are many manufactures that are now offering lowers that will work with 45 degree safeties. Currently, I have used them in lowers by Rainier Arms, AXTS, Joe Bob Outfitters and San Tan Tactical to name a few. This, in my opinion, is a big improvement over the 90 degree throw levers we have been used to for so long. It should be noted that the B.A.D. A.S.S. 45 will not fit every lower out there. Compatible lowers will need to have the 45 degree safety relief cut machined into the billet or forged receiver. This is because there is a safety pin/block on the B.A.D. A.S.S. 45. And yes, any modification of this pin will void the warranty.
More and more AR lower manufacturers are seeing the light and are offering their lowers with a 45 degree option. This is a simple design change that has taken a great product and made it even better. If you have the chance to shoot an AR with a B.A.D. A.S.S. safety selector with a 45 degree throw installed, do it. You will walk away with a smile on your face while talking about how bad ass the B.A.D. A.S.S. truly is.
The B.A.D. A.S.S. safety selector with a 45 degree throw retails for $85 and can be purchased from Rainier Arms.