Faxon Firearms Interview at SHOT Show 2015

| January 28, 2015 | 2 Comments

Bob Faxon is one of our favorite people that we met at SHOT Show 2014. He didn’t know anything about us, and graciously gave us a lot of his time. He also gave us two fistfuls of their prototype magazine identification bands, because he didn’t want our readers mixing up 5.56 and .300 Blackout magazines. They were our first of many community giveaways.

In true gentlemanly fashion, he made time for us again at SHOT Show 2015.

A lot has happened at Faxon Firearms since last year. Their ARAK-21 upper has been successful, and they have also entered into partnerships with a LOT of other manufacturers for their barrels. Robar’s ultra lightweight PolyMAR AR15 features their new pencil barrel, and the Robar folk spoke very highly of it.


Faxon has also created a crush washer-free muzzle attachment and timing system, as well as releasing a color-coded fleet of magazine identification bands for retail.

I think most of you will be the most interested in two new caliber options from Faxon Firearms.

ARAK-21 in 7.62×39


Adding 7.62x39mm to the ARAK-21 completes what Bob Faxon called “the trifecta.” You can buy all three calibers — one upper, two bolts, and three barrels — starting at $1818. It’s available now.

ARAK-31 in .308


The big news was the introduction of the ARAK-31, chambered in .308. It’s built like a tank. I would say it felt more like a CETME / G3 than an AR10.

The ARAK-31 is the first Faxon upper to have a backup charging handle, and just like everything Faxon Firearms sells it’s configurable. You can run the backup handle on the left, right, or not at all.


Bob Faxon demonstrates the primary charging handle (left) and the backup charging handle (right).

The ARAK-31 will be out sometime in the second quarter of 2015. The upper starts at $1499 with a single barrel, and a complete rifle is $2499. If you pre-order now, you can save $100 on the upper or $150 on the complete rifle.

Barrel lengths are 16″, 18″, and 20″ , with different fluting options available for an extra cost.

I’ve sold off all of my .308, but if you’re interested in a larger caliber rifle then the ARAK-31 may be worth a look.

Gas adjustment lock

The ARAK-31 also has a new locking gas port system.


You twist the gas adjustment pin and it locks into place. I think this would be a nice feature for some .300 Blackout builds that may benefit from quickly adjusting the gas when shooting between suppressed and supersonic. ARAK-21 uppers will eventually receive this feature, but it comes standard on the ARAK-31.



Grip Safety

Faxon has always put a premium on safety. They have been working on a prototype grip safety that basically works like one on a 1911. Mr. Faxon heard of a law enforcement officer who had a negligent discharge after the trigger of his AR caught on a piece of gear. There was a fatality, and Faxon Firearms saw an opportunity to create a secondary, passive safety for the AR platform.

I appreciate the danger involved. Our instructors are always telling us to check our safeties during carbine classes. Consistent, frequent, structured training is the main defense against such a risk. It’s also important for us to keep our gear clear of any protrusions that might catch a trigger.

While I am not a fan of additional safety mechanisms on a firearm, I can imagine certain law enforcement departments will desire the Faxon Firearms grip safety. Faxon is also publishing their safety design to qualified manufacturers. This should allow easier and faster adoption.

The grip safety should make its debut sometime in the second quarter of 2015.


About the Author:

Short Barrel Shepherd Short Barrel Shepherd is a regular guy and works to make Web sites and mobile apps easier for people to use. He spends his free time attending fight-focused firearm, knife, and combatives training, motorcycling, writing, and playing games. His daily carry is a Glock 19 pistol and an AR15 .300 Blackout pistol in a backpack.
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2 Comments on "Faxon Firearms Interview at SHOT Show 2015"

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  1. David says:

    I am skeptical of the whole grip safety on an AR-15 thing, too, but I guess properly implemented, it might not suck so much.

    I’d like to see them do a shorter version of the ARAK-21 for PDW applications, if they don’t do it already.

    • Short Barrel Shepherd Short Barrel Shepherd says:

      I know there is a 12″ barrel limit on the ARAK-21 due to the design of the upper. I am not sure about the 31 (I will ask), but I do believe 308 loses a lot of potency once you go shorter than 14″.

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