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When it comes to choosing the right AR-15 barrel, there are a lot of factors to consider. One of the most important is the length of the barrel. The two most popular lengths are 16 inches and 10.5 inches, but there is a third option that is often overlooked: the 14.5-inch barrel.

In this article, we will compare the 14.5-inch barrel to the more common 16-inch and 10.5-inch barrels. We will examine the pros and cons of each length and help you determine which one is right for your needs.

The 16-Inch Barrel

The 16-inch barrel is the most common length for AR-15 rifles. It is the standard length for most military and law enforcement rifles, and it is also the most popular length for civilian rifles.


– Longer sight radius: The longer barrel provides a longer sight radius, which can make it easier to shoot accurately.
– Higher velocity: The longer barrel allows for a longer powder burn, which can increase velocity.
– Better accuracy: The longer sight radius and increased velocity can result in better accuracy.


– Less maneuverable: The longer barrel can make the rifle less maneuverable in close-quarters situations.
– Heavier: The longer barrel can add weight to the rifle, making it less comfortable to carry.
– More expensive: In general, longer barrels are more expensive than shorter barrels.

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The 10.5-Inch Barrel

The 10.5-inch barrel is a popular choice for those who want a more compact and maneuverable rifle. It is often used for tactical and home defense purposes.


– More maneuverable: The shorter barrel makes the rifle more maneuverable, especially in close-quarters situations.
– Lighter: The shorter barrel can make the rifle lighter and more comfortable to carry.
– Less expensive: In general, shorter barrels are less expensive than longer barrels.


– Less accurate: The shorter sight radius and lower velocity can make the rifle less accurate.
– Lower velocity: The shorter barrel provides a shorter powder burn, which can result in lower velocity.

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The 14.5-Inch Barrel

The 14.5-inch barrel is a less common option that combines some of the benefits of both the 16-inch and 10.5-inch barrels.


– More accurate than 10.5-inch barrel: The longer sight radius and increased velocity can make the 14.5-inch barrel more accurate than the 10.5-inch barrel.
– More maneuverable than 16-inch barrel: The shorter length can make the rifle more maneuverable than the 16-inch barrel.
– More affordable than 16-inch barrel: The 14.5-inch barrel is often less expensive than the 16-inch barrel.


– Less accurate than 16-inch barrel: The shorter length can result in lower accuracy than the 16-inch barrel.
– Less maneuverable than 10.5-inch barrel: The longer length can make the rifle less maneuverable than the 10.5-inch barrel.

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Choosing the right barrel length for your AR-15 rifle depends on your intended use. If you need maximum accuracy and are not concerned about maneuverability, the 16-inch barrel may be the right choice for you. If you need a rifle that is more maneuverable, the 10.5-inch barrel may be the best option. If you want a balance of accuracy and maneuverability, the 14.5-inch barrel may be the perfect choice.

No matter which barrel length you choose, make sure to choose a high-quality barrel that fits your needs and budget. With the right barrel, you can maximize the performance of your AR-15 and enjoy it for years to come.

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