Tyrant Designs is making a name for itself with its CNC machined, skeletonized AR grips. I can understand why: the grips appear to be precision machined with some bright, attractive colors. For a fun gun or competition rifle, I can definitely see the appeal.
Recently, the company reached out to me to see if I would be willing to review some of its products. I agreed and a set of red grips was sent out to me. Overall, I like the grips. But, I feel they are specialty products, and they won’t be perfect for everyone’s needs. Let’s get into the details…
Mod Series AR-15 Pistol Grip
For this review, I had two Tyrant Designs products to test: the Mod Series AR-15 Grip and the Mod Series AR-15 ForeGrip. Although I used them as a set, I decided to break them down into separate sections to talk about installation and use.
The Mod Grip is machined from 7075 aluminum and then anodized. Tyrant Designs offers a number of anodized colors including red, blue, grey and black.
As you can see in the photos, the pistol grip is skeletonized, offering little in the “meat” of the grip. On the leading and rear faces of the grip, you add a hard polymer insert. Inserts come in two sizes: medium and large. Also, the backstrap insert can be had with a smooth finish or with a chevron pattern.
The grip I received was finished in red with the medium sized chevron rear insert.
The pistol grip is not cheap, but you are getting a really good part for your money. The suggested retail price is $115.95 for this kit. The kit includes everything you need to install it onto your gun.
Machined 7075 aluminum is very rugged when compared to injection molded plastic. However, it can also be heavier. The balance between strength and weight is always a trade off. Here is a comparison of the Mod AR-15 Grip to several other AR grips I had on hand. All of these weights were measured with the mounting hardware on a digital postal scale.
|Tyrant Designs Mod AR-15 Grip||4.3 oz|
|Anderson Manufacturing A2-style grip||2.6 oz|
|Magpul MOE SL grip||2.8 oz|
|SIG SAUER MPX grip||3.5 oz|
I was impressed with how good the red anodizing looks. The machine work on the grip was excellent and the red really popped. I was intending on using the red set on a 7.62×39 AR I was building. However, after running into an issue with the rifle, I swapped the Tyrant Design grips onto a SIG MPX for testing.
The grip installs in a manner similar to any other AR pistol grip. However, instead of using a screwdriver to turn the grip screw, you will use an included Allen key with a ball end. The ball end allows you to tighten the screw from an angle.
Tyrant Designs cautions against over-tightening the grip. I found that hand tightening without bearing down on it was enough to secure the grip. Through several days of shooting, I had no problems with the grip.
I should note that I tried this grip on a standard AR-15 and on a SIG MPX. The only difference between the two installations is that the MPX has a second spring that is held in place by the grip.
Be careful when removing the original SIG grip so the spring doesn’t get away from you. When installing the new grip, just be careful not to bend or kink that second spring. It is no problem making the swap as long as you take your time.
On the Range
The grip feels pretty good in the hand, and it feels like a rock solid part of the gun. It felt perfectly at home on both the AR and SIG. From the bench and on the move, the grip simply worked as one would expect.
I do not baby most of my guns. To me, guns are tools and should be used. That means I am probably harder on my guns than a lot of people. As a consequence, wear can show up fairly quickly on my guns.
The Tyrant Designs skeleton grip held up great. There was very little wear on the grip even after quite a bit of use.
As I stated above, the grip feels pretty good in the hand. However, grip feel is a very subjective thing. What works for me may not work for you. Neither of us is wrong – just different.
While the Tyrant Designs grip felt good in my hand, it would not be my first choice on a gun I planned on shooting a lot. I much prefer the feel of the Magpul MOE SL grip.
Although the front to back distance is perfect, I found that the significantly recessed sides felt a little too funky for me. I still maintained control over the gun at all times. However, I like a little fill in the sides of the grip. For a size comparison only (because they are two totally different products), the Magpul MOE SL feels about perfect in my hand.
Bottom Line: The Mod AR-15 Grip worked perfectly and looks great. As with anything else, the feel of the grip is highly subjective.
Mod Series AR-15 ForeGrip
Like the pistol grip, the ForeGrip appeared to have very precise machining and was in the bright red finish. It is designed to be used in a number of ways. One of the nice features about the ForeGrip is that it can attach to both KeyMod and M-LOK handguards with a quick switch of hardware.
The ForeGrip kits include everything you need to install the grip on your gun. For $69.96, you can have the grip in one of four colors with either the M-LOK or KeyMod hardware. For only $5 more, you get a kit that comes with hardware for both styles of attachment. Unless the industry settles on either of the two attachment methods, I’d prefer to spend the extra money for the greater compatibility.
Installing the ForeGrip is even easier than the pistol grip as there are no springs to worry about. Simply choose the correct hardware – KeyMod or M-LOK – and attach the grip to the AR rail. The attachment screw heads are concealed under a hard polymer insert. This keeps things looking very clean.
On the Range
As I expected, the ForeGrip was very solid and it looked good. It held up to plenty of shooting and showed little wear on the finish.
Unfortunately, for me, it was a bit awkward to use. The rear portion didn’t work terribly well as a handstop with an ungloved hand. But, if I moved the ForeGrip farther back on the handguard, I found that the leading edge was a bit too short to reliably use as a handstop.
When using a pair of Mechanix M-Pact gloves, the ForeGrip was much easier to use and seemed less awkward.
I don’t mean to bag on the ForeGrip as it is a well machined piece that looks really slick. However, I never could get comfortable using it without gloves. If I was setting up a gun for use only with a gloved hand, I would consider using the ForeGrip.
As I said, the drawbacks are based on my needs. The ForeGrip may work very well for you. For example, The Daily Shooter had a very good experience with the ForeGrip:
Bottom Line: The ForeGrip looks very good and mounts solidly to the gun. Even though the fit did not work well for my hand, it may work perfectly for you. I encourage you to check it out.
The Tyrant Designs grips are high quality parts. They fit exactly as they should and the durability of the finish was very good. For adding a unique look to your AR, these are hard to beat.
For me, the grips are not an ideal fit to my hand. As I described above, I prefer a full pistol grip and simply wasn’t a fan of the the ForeGrip. That said, they may work extremely well for you. It all comes down to personal preference.
I recommend these products to anyone who likes the feel of them. I found absolutely no problems with the build or durability of the grips.
All of my reviews include a full disclosure of any potential influences that may have affected the determinations made in the articles.
I was contacted by Tyrant Designs to see if I would be interested in reviewing the company’s products. No offers of money or other compensation for writing the review were made or given.
I have no financial interest in Tyrant Designs or any other manufacturer in the shooting/outdoors industries. Tyrant Designs is not an advertiser, nor are we in any talks for the company to be one.
At this time, I do not accept any advertising on GunsHolstersAndGear.com (GHG). GHG is, however, a for-profit website that helps to take care of my family. Some of the links on this site are affiliate links that go to sites that include Amazon and Brownells. These links pay me a small commission – typically about 4-5% – that does not affect what you pay for the products. I do not get to see what any individual purchases.
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All of the opinions are my own.
The Tyrant Designs Mod AR-15 Grip and ForeGrip are top quality components for your rifle. The skeletonized parts allow for the use of high strength aluminum without adding a lot of weight to your gun. The parts worked as described and showed very good durability on the range, while I prefer the feel of other products, I still strongly recommend these if you like the look and feel of them on your gun.