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What is Side Charging Upper? 🔍
⇢ A side charging upper is a type of upper receiver for an AR-15 rifle that features a charging handle on the side of the receiver instead of on the rear. This allows for easier and more comfortable charging of the rifle, particularly for left-handed shooters or those using optics that may obstruct the standard charging handle.
|⚡️ Side Charging Handle||⚡️ Improved Functionality|
|⚡️ Ambidextrous Operation||⚡️ Improved Accuracy|
|⚡️ Enhanced Ergonomics|
|🔵 The side charging handle allows for faster and easier charging of the firearm, especially in situations where speed is important.|
|🔵 The ambidextrous operation and enhanced ergonomics can improve handling, making it easier to operate the firearm with precision and control.|
|🔵 The improved functionality can increase versatility by allowing for one-handed charging or charging with gloves, making it easier to use in a wider range of situations.|
|🔵 The improved balance and reduced weight can improve accuracy by reducing muzzle rise and improving overall stability.|
|🔵 Side charging uppers are available in a variety of styles and designs, making it easier to find one that fits your specific needs and preferences.|
What are the types of Side Charging Upper? 💡
📢 There are several types of side charging uppers available in the market. ⚫️ Our experts determined some of the most common:
|☄️ Non-Reciprocating Side Charging Upper (SCU) has a handle that is attached to the bolt carrier group, but it doesn’t reciprocate with the bolt during firing. This means that the handle remains in the same position during firing, which can improve accuracy.||☄️ Billet Side Charging Upper is made from a single block of aluminum, which can provide greater durability and strength compared to other types.|
|☄️ Reciprocating SCU. In this type, the handle is attached to a charging handle that reciprocates with the bolt carrier group during firing. This can make the handle easier to manipulate, but it can also create more movement during firing, which may affect accuracy.||☄️ Forged SCU is made by hammering a piece of metal into shape, which can provide greater structural integrity and resilience. They are often less expensive than billet.|
|☄️ Left-Handed Side Charging Upper is designed for left-handed shooters, with the charging handle located on the left side of the upper receiver. This can provide greater convenience and ease of use for left-handed shooters.||☄️ Integrated Side Charging Uppers are integrated with the lower receiver, creating a more streamlined and integrated design. These can provide greater ease of use and convenience, especially for competition shooting.|
Top 12 🚀 Side Charging Upper
1# Tactical Edge Complete Upper Receiver
The Tactical Edge RD-9 Side-Charging 9mm Complete Upper Receiver is perfect for the cutting edge, compact RD-9 sub-gun. With side charging capabilities, you can charge the chamber without changing your sight and shooting position. The receiver is made from solid billet construction and is fully compatible with forged or billet lower receivers. It comes with a KeyMod rail and Magpul MBUS flip-up sights, so you can add a weapon light, laser sight, red dot or any other accessories to complete your pistol build.
2# Faxon Firearms ARAK-21 Upper Receiver
Regarding quality and performance, the Faxon Firearms ARAK-21 Upper Receiver is in a class of its own. Expertly crafted from tough yet lightweight aluminium, this upper receiver is designed to withstand the rigours of the most demanding shooting environments. The ambidextrous charging handle makes it perfect for both left and right-handed shooters. At the same time, the top full-length Picatinny rail and multiple other rails provide a comprehensive M4-style quad rail upper. If you want to upgrade your rifle build, the Faxon Firearms ARAK-21 Upper Receiver is a perfect choice.
3# JP Enterprises CNC Billet Upper Receiver
Looking to add a touch of class and style to your AR-15 build? Then look no further than the JP Enterprises CTR-02 CNC billet upper receiver. This top-of-the-line upper receiver is machined from a solid piece of billet aluminium for strength and durability. It features a sleek, minimalist design that will give your rifle that high-end, custom look. The CTR-02 is compatible with any standard barrel extension, bolt and carrier assembly, and charging handle and handguard, so it’s easy to incorporate into any build. The receiver sides can be straight-finished for that trendy two-tone black/silver appearance. Whether you’re building a showpiece rifle or just want to upgrade your current setup, the JP Enterprises CTR-02 CNC billet upper receiver is a perfect choice.
4# Nordic Components Stripped Upper
Do you want to build a custom AR-15 rifle but don’t need all the bells and whistles that come with a standard upper receiver? Nordic Components has you covered with their stripped upper receiver. This receiver is made from a 7029-T6 aluminium extrusion for increased rigidity, and is compatible with standard AR-15 bolt carrier groups, charging handles, and barrels. It also features a flat-top Picatinny rail for mounting optics or other accessories. Please note that due to the heavier receiver walls, this upper may not be compatible with all handguards.
5# New Frontier C4 Upper Receiver
New Frontier C4 Upper Receiver is the perfect platform for custom AR builds. Unlike traditional stamped uppers, the C4 is cold-hammered stamped from a single piece of billet aluminium, providing greater strength and durability. The oversized windows allow for a clear sight picture, while the comfortable hand guard with soft rounded edges provides a perfect grip. Precision machined lead-free solid block spacers are used to ensure accuracy, making this upper receiver perfect for both recreational and competitive shooters.
6# Angstadt Arms Complete Roller Delay Upper Receiver
Whether you’re a professional operator or simply a prepared citizen, the Angstadt Arms MDP-9 Complete Upper Receiver is an excellent choice for your personal defence weapon. This ultra-compact receiver is built for the modern age, with a proven roller-delayed action and compatibility with Mil-Spec AR-9 lower receivers. The MDP-9 is chambered in 9mm and includes a 5.85″ MP5 profile barrel with 3-lug. It also features a 1913 Picatinny end plate that accepts a wide variety of stabilizing braces and rifle stocks. The MDP-9 is the perfect choice for those who demand the highest level of quality and reliability in their personal defence weapon.
7# Gibbz Arms Side Charging Upper Receiver
The Gibbz Arms G4 Side Charging Upper Receiver is the perfect choice for those looking for a non-reciprocating upper receiver that is reliable and easy to use. Featuring a detent to keep the charging handle forward during operation, the G4 is compatible with all mil-spec and most custom bolt carriers without modification. Additionally, this upper receiver features an enlarged ejection port and will work with AR-15 calibres from 22LR to 50 Beowulf. Other notable features include a full 15-slot Picatinny rail, a bolt carrier door in the rear for easy bolt carrier removal, and a charging handle cover to keep operating gasses in (important for suppressed fire). The G4 is also lightweight at just 13.0 oz., making it ideal for both tactical and competitive applications.
8# J P Enterprises – AR-15 PSC-11 Side Charge Gunsmith Kit
The PSC-11 includes the standard AR15/M16 charging handle and the JP side charging handle. This provides a more convenient means of charging the weapon and is ideal for those who prefer not to have to deal with an ejection port cover. The forward assist and hardware are also included. The bolt carrier is available in either low mass or full mass versions and is constructed of 416 stainless steel with a polished black QPQ finish. The bolt group is precision machined from SAE9310 nickel chromium molybdenum steel, and the locking lugs are radiused on all 90-degree corners for smoother operation. The side charging handle can be removed for cleaning and engages the bolt carrier on the front side, opposite the extractor. This kit is perfect for those who demand the utmost in quality and performance.
9# Foxtrot Mike Products Enhanced Charging Upper Receivers
The Foxtrot Mike Products Enhanced Upper Receiver is a top-of-the-line PCC Upper that sets itself apart from the competition. This upper features a unique Charging Handle, positioned much like an MP5, making the operation of the Upper fast and straightforward. The Enhanced Upper also includes a set of MLOK rail covers, ready to install! The barrels on this Upper are black nitrides for a robust and durable finish. Additionally, the included Bolt is compatible with lowers that accept Glock 9mm Magazines. Finally, the handguards neatly extend close to the muzzle. The 10-inch model features a blast diffuser on the muzzle, that projects concussion forward. The 16-inch model features a muzzle brake that times muzzle flip. Get the best of the best with the Foxtrot Mike Products Enhanced Upper Receiver!
10# J P Enterprises Side Charge Gunsmith Kit
Looking for a top-quality side charge gunsmith kit? Look no further than the JP Enterprises side charge gunsmith kit! This kit includes the standard AR-15/M16 charging handle and the JP side charging handle, making it perfect for those who want the best of both worlds. The kit also includes an ejection port cover and hardware, as well as a forward assist and hardware. Plus, the JP full mass bolt carrier and JP enhanced bolt group are also included (bolt, cam pin, firing pin and firing pin retaining pin). The JP-enhanced bolt is precision machined from SAE9310 nickel chromium molybdenum steel, and the locking lugs are meticulously radiused on all 90-degree corners of the locking lugs. The side charging handle can be removed for cleaning and engages the bolt carrier on the front side, opposite the extractor. Get the ultimate in versatility and performance with the JP Enterprises side charge gunsmith kit!
11# Brownells Blemished Slickside Upper Receiver
Looking for a quality upper receiver for your next AR build, but don’t want to spend a fortune? Check out Brownells’ blemished M16 A1 upper receivers! These upper receivers didn’t meet Brownells’ high standards due to a slightly offset sight channel, but they’re still solid components that are perfect for budget-minded AR fans. Made from 7075-T6 aluminium forging, these blemished upper receivers are marked 5.56 NATO and are completely stripped. They feature the original shape of the M16 A1, including no shell deflector and an A1 rear sight. So if you’re looking for a quality upper receiver at an affordable price, be sure to check out Brownells’ blemished M16 A1 upper receiver!
12# Brownells Slickside Upper Receiver
Looking for a precise mirror of the original early AR-15 upper receiver? Look no further than the Brownells Slickside Upper Receiver. Featuring the correct early-style carry handle contours, lack of shell deflector and forward assist, and A1-pattern rear sight housing, this upper receiver is perfect for your next “Retro” or reproduction building. precisely machined from 7075 T6 aluminium forgings to match the dimensions of the originals in every way, this upper receiver is sure to give you the perfect fit for all current mil-spec AR-15 components. Don’t settle for anything less than the best – trust Brownells for all your gunsmithing needs.
Side Charging vs Rear Charging System
⚖️ Side charging and rear charging are two different methods of charging a firearm, such as an AR-15 rifle.
- 🔰 In a side charging system, the charging handle is located on the side of the upper receiver, rather than at the rear. This allows the shooter to manipulate the charging handle without having to move their head or shift their grip on the rifle. Some shooters find this more ergonomic and faster to use, especially when shooting from a prone or unsupported position.
- 🔰 In a rear charging system, the charging handle is located at the rear of the upper receiver, as is typical in most AR-15 rifles. This method requires the shooter to lift their head or change their grip on the rifle to charge it. While it may be less convenient, it is a more traditional and familiar method for many shooters.
🎥 Hope the video will be helpful for you:
Side charging uppers have been growing in popularity and for good reason. They offer a number of advantages over traditional top-charging uppers. In this buyer’s guide, we’ve highlighted the best options on the market. Our team also answered some common questions about these products to help you decide if this or that option is the right choice for you. Thanks for reading! 😉
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