BMSIL – Battlelink Minimalist Stock (MFT)
I saw the Mission First Tactical Minimalist stock the first time on MFT’s Facebook page months ago. I don’t know how long it’s been in development, or how long they have been teasing the general public with pictures of it, but ive been waiting to get my mitts on one since then. Well, the UPS fairy finally delivered and I tore into the package like Christmas morning.
See, I’m a gear masochist. I didn’t want to get my hands on the Minimalist because I wanted a new stock; I wanted to get my hands on it to break it. Ive tested Mission First Tactical stocks in the past, they sent me their Battlelink Utility Stock last year and even after running it over with 5000 pounds of American V8 twice, I could not break it. Short of setting it on fire or using a sawzall, I was at the limit of realistic tests for durability and have to submit to the fact that it was a well-built stock. Admittedly, running it over with my truck was outside of the “normal wear and tear” envelope even for the speediest of high speed BAMFs. I had to acquiesce to this truth and keep in mind when testing the Minimalist.
First test for any stock is the fit. I removed my current stock and slid on the Minimalist MILSPEC model to a Vltor MILSPEC tube. No play, no rattle, nothing to complain about. I expected that, so I immediately set to working on consistent cheek weld. The Minimalist is called the Minimalist for a reason; it’s minimal. (Grunts: minimal) So minimal that what you are getting is a stock toe, heel, butt pad and a flared stock body for cheek weld and that’s it. This stock doesn’t have 19 battery compartments, 23 different sling attachment points, a chapstick holder or a bottle opener. It’s just a stock pretending to be not there while supposedly providing all that you need a stock to be there for. Cheek welds with the Minimalist are improved over your standard MILSPEC carbine stock. Thanks to the flared body along the stock length, it’s also improved over many other aftermarket stock options. It’s not a significant body flare, but it’s enough to get your peepers behind your sights without alignment issues. That is all we can ever hope for when it comes to cheek weld anyway. Using the Minimalist from different ready positions, I was able to find cheek weld each time and the cheek weld was consistent. Pleased with that, I set to trying to break it.
It’s just a stock pretending to be not there while unobtrusively providing all that you need a stock to be there for…there’s no iPod jack or tent storage compartment so if you treat your stock like the trunk on an Oldsmobile, you may need to shop for something a little more suitable.
I wanted to keep it realistic, so I set to trying to break the Minimalist in a method that a LEO, soldier, Marine or any other harm’s way shooter might use their stock (other than for shooting). Obviously the stock must be able to handle the occasional strike (which is as much about the buffer tube as it is the stock) but I purposely used the toe of the Minimalist as that is obviously the weakest (structurally speaking) part of the stock. No real luck there; some stiff butt strikes to door handles, dry wall and plywood showed the stock to be structurally sound over all. I’m not going to say I’m disappointed I couldn’t break it because I’m not, but I admit to suffering the residual grunt feelings of setting out to break something and not being able to do so.
It’s under 6 ounces. In grunt math, a can of Bud weighs twice as much and isn’t nearly as useful for helping to put bullets where they need to be. The weight, or I should say the lack of weight is very noticeable, it feels like the rear of the rifle is better balanced over a traditional stock with the weight savings offered by the Minimalist without sacrificing strength or usability. If your intention is to have the lightest rifle possible, this stock should be the only consideration for weight savings on the rear end of your rifle design.
It’s under 6 ounces. In grunt math, a can of Bud weighs twice as much and isn’t nearly as useful for helping to put bullets where they need to be.
For stock features, the Minimalist has three sling point slots and two eyelets for HK style attachments, a length of pull adjustment and that’s it (remember, it’s called the Minimalist). Obviously this sparse design isn’t for everyone; there’s no iPod jack or tent storage compartment so if you treat your stock like the trunk on an Oldsmobile, you may need to shop for something a little more suitable. If you want to run it light, this stock is the lightest on the market and can take plenty of hard use.
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