Lancer Systems: “Not a rifle company, but an Engineering company that makes rifles”

lancer rifle
December 11, 2014  
Categories: Musings
Tags: Mags

Lancer Systems is not just a rifle company, but an engineering company that makes rifles. True story. We’ll explain why.

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Lancer Systems 5.56 and .308 rifles

Recently we had the chance to travel to Lancer Systems new 78,000 sq. ft facility located in Quakertown, Pennsylvania. Having just finished their move on Sept. 26, the place still smelled of new paint and maybe a bit like determination… Lancer is a company kicking off a lot of new projects!


The new facility, with room to grow!

Most people know Lancer as a company that produces high quality polymer AR-15/ M-16 magazines. To be honest, thats pretty much what we only knew them for. We’ve seen their recent additions to the AR market with adaptable lower receivers, carbon fiber forearms and the like, but we didn’t know much about them as a company. Some people view Lancer Systems as a “3-Gun Company” because that’s one of the most likely sports that you will see their products, particularly their hand guards and shotgun magazine tubes. We kind of felt the same way until we stopped for the tour, and realized just how wrong we were (or at least just how incomplete our understanding was). 

Lancer Systems gets its roots from a very big titan of the manufacturing industry, Greene-Tweed. This company is know the world over as an advanced engineering, forward thinking, high performance manufacturer for multiple industries. From this, Lancer has gained an edge in both knowledge and experience when it comes down to producing products from nearly every conceivable material. From Thermoplastics, specialized coatings, elastomers, polymers and metals, to composites, ceramic and carbon fiber. If you can name a material or a manufacturing process, Lancer most likely does it, and does it well.


Steel feed lips being attached to their AWM magazines

Thinking that we were merely going to see some polymer magazines get popped out of a mold and some receivers CNC machined, we set our expectations  fairly, foolishly low. Lancer produces a wide range of products, and not just for the shooting market. They build a wide range of products for harsh environment, high reliability, low failure industries such as energy production, underwater vehicles, aerospace and our military. Hell, they make parts for the Lockheed Martin F-35 stealth multirole fighter plane.


Carbon Fiber tubes prior to being turned into forearms and stocks.


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From Polymer magazines, to fiber optic systems this is a company that can do it all, because it already is.  Speaking with the company’s lead engineers, we were apprehensive about a “we can do it all” type company producing firearms. We are cautious of this, because it would seem like they might not “stay in their lane”, and over-engineer complex solutions to problems that fail to even exist. We see this all the time, and we are sure that you, the reader has noticed it as well. You’d have to be an idiot to miss the plethora of pointless accessories that exist in the firearms market. Sometimes it seems like people produce a product for no other reason than just to make it, never factoring in cost, weight, ergonomics, the way it’s actually going to be employed or even need. The makers of such items frequently fail to consult the end user, or (as we have occasionally heard) simply tell the perspective customer that they are wrong.

Yes, that actually happens and more often than you would believe.



Extremely light and strong, Lancer makes extensive use of Carbon in their product line up.

Luckily, this is not the case with Lancer. They have hired a good, well rounded staff of  experienced engineers, former military, LEOs and sport shooters to form a team that listens.

“We make the best stuff no one knows about!” they quipped.

We’d like to help that joke is likely soon change! Lancer keeps their finger on the pulse of the industry and are willing to produce quality products based off customers needs. As it was said repetitively during our visit, they will not make a product unless it fills a need, and can be made stronger, lighter and better than the competition. We like that, and from everything we could see its perfectly true. It wasn’t just cool to see carbon fiber spun around a mandrel to create a forearm, it was insightful to learn why their process and materials are superior to prevent delamination and cracking. We didn’t know a lot about how parts are made from high strength ceramics, but we do now! Their take on advanced weapon projects feels more like science fiction than current technology would seemingly allow. If you told us they had Lucius Fox from Wayne Enterprises working for them, we’d probably believe you. We were tipped off to some exciting things in the works, and it appears Lancer systems has both the drive and means to push the envelope. Their vision is one full of innovation and absolute quality that not only helps existing systems operate better, but is also the kind of stuff that sets the stage for original, 21st century designs. 


The lineage of the AWM magazine family. The company has some very cool designs coming out soon!

We are glad we had the chance to tour the new facility and learn more about a company that has been lurking in the shadows of the market. Our perception of the company was entirely wrong, in both scope and production. Lancer Systems is not a rifle company trying to engineer firearms, they are an engineering company that wants to build superior firearms. They have the knowledge, experience and means to modernize our expectation of what that should be. With confidence we can say that the public’s perception will change in regard to Lancer. They are not a “3 gun company”, or “just a magazine company”. Having shot their rifles, tested their magazines and drilled their staff with questions, we see that they are much more than that – Lancer Systems is an adaptive, responsive company with a lot of resources. We most certainly will be seeing much, much more from them.

Mad Duo, Breach-Bang & CLEAR!






Nate Murr

Nate Murr

About the Author

Nate is a former USMC Sergeant turned nasty civilian and idiosyncratic inventor. He lives largely on nicotine, whiskey, and hate and can be frequently found orating Kipling poems to frightened hipsters. A renowned procrastinator and storied adventure protagonist, Murr is a graduate of the Camp Lejeune School for Wayward Boys. A combat veteran of multiple tours in Iraq and Africa, he was a Marine NCO, Infantry Platoon Sergeant and Scout Sniper team leader. Murr is a fully qualified American Jedi, self-described handsome badass and world-renowned field barista (true story - he's brewed great coffee on at least four continents). As anyone who has spent any time talking gear with him, Murr is something of an idiot savant when it comes finger-fucking stuff to make it work better. Nate only chain smokes when he's drinking, and only drinks every day. We reckon he is probably best described as a sociopathic philosopher with vestigial cutthroat (though poetic) tendencies. Thus far Murr's writing has appeared in such places as here on Breach-Bang-Clear, on, in field shitters and portajohns on at least 3 continents, in RECOIL Magazine and of course Penthouse letters. You can follow him and his company at @frontier_resolve on Instagram.


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