I mentioned in my earlier review of the Ruger PC Carbine that one of the concerns about its takedown capability was a potential loss of zero if the optic is mounted on the receiver’s integral rail.
There are a number of options that have arisen to remedy this concern, and hopefully I’ll get a chance to review most of them. First up in what is hopefully a long series is the Samson Manufacturing PC Scout Rail.
Some pertinent facts from Samson’s website:
Mounts using the existing sight screws
Made in New Hampshire USA
Weight: 2.97 oz (84.1 gm)
Length: 15.39 in
Width: .835 in
Height: .544 in
Material: 6061-T6 aluminum
Finish: Type III class 2 hard coat anodizing
Retailing for $49.99, it is an easy to install solution if you’re worried about the zeroing issue. It took me about five minutes to grab a Torx bit, unscrew the four screws holding the sights on, and screw the Scout Rail on. The Scout Rail height matches the receiver rail height just about perfectly, so if you liked the height of your optic on the receiver, it will be the same, just further forward.
As you can see from the specs above, adding the Scout Rail itself won’t dramatically affect the balance of your gun. The Aimpoint T-1 I mounted on it weighed more than the rail itself. Now, moving the sight off the receiver did seem to affect the balance of the gun, but I’ll have to put more time in on the range before I really know how it affects me. Having my sight that far forward is different for me, as I normally push it as far back as possible. It’s workable, especially once I put some reps in, it’s just a departure from what I’m used to on my AR.
Obviously, you’ve lost your sights if you’re using this rail. I know iron sights split the gun community right now, especially those in the AR world. Some guys absolutely require back up irons, and some guys run optic only. If you’re one of the guys that absolutely has to have back up irons, start looking for some low-pros or find a different optic mounting option. As I was looking around earlier, it actually appears that you could put a set of sights similar to the CZ Scorpion on this rail and get decent results, but I haven’t tried that yet. If you’re of the opinion that an optic is all you need, then you’re set.
If your primary interest is in finding a mount that will give you the most options for your optic, this is the rail you’re looking for. There is also enough room on the rail to mount a flashlight with an offset if you don’t want to use the Picatinny on the handguard. If there was a single thing I could change, I would love to see the rail extended back toward the receiver about 1/4-1/2″, just to allow the optic to sit a little further back. Otherwise, the Scout Rail is good to go.
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