Now that basics are out of the way, we can get into what some would call the "fun stuff".
Here's Chris Fry from MDTS again, teaching you how to properly load and unload the AR 15 the safe way. All of his advice is sound, but I'd like to chime in with a few tips and opinions of my own:
1.) When loading a magazine properly, you should almost never have to use your forward assist. Its purpose is to help seat the bolt all the way forward if the bolt hasn't cycled all the way, whether you're doing a press check like Chris did in the video, or if the gun has gotten dirty from carbon fouling or if any lubrication has gone dry after about 500 rounds or so. Most of the time, you won't need it.
2.) You can load the AR 15 with the bolt all the way forward (also called a closed bolt). It's just like loading with an open bolt, the difference being that you pull and release the charging handle after loading the magazine instead of pressing the bolt release paddle. Do not hold the charging handle as it's moving forward. This is called "riding the handle" and it won't allow the bolt to cycle properly. Just yank it all the way back and let it go.
3.) I prefer to push the bolt release paddle with my thumb, instead of hitting it with the heel of my palm like Chris does. Under stress, it's possible to miss the paddle with your palm and you'll have to try again. I've found that using my thumb is more precise and deliberate, but this is mostly personal preference. Your mileage may vary.
Content originally created by:
National Shooting Sports Foundation
NSSF Youtube Channel
Chris Fry, MDTS
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