Building an AR-platform firearm from individually-selected components allows for a high degree of customization. Every AR built in this manner includes a certain level of individuality. In this article, Doug shares what a new company is doing to help builders make their ARs truly one-of-a-kind creations.

AR platform rifles have become almost a commodity in recent times. Given their popularity, enthusiasts now have access to a virtually endless array of component and accessory options. At the 2014 Shot Show I found a company that has taken AR personalization to the next level. Unique-ARs is a family owned company based in Idaho that has combined their love of shooting with their talents in design and artistic machining.

Unique-ARs has created a entire line of artistically-crafted hand guards. As if that weren’t enough, they will also work with you to design a custom one-of-a-kind hand guard that will make your AR truly unique. This opens a whole new chapter in AR building and, whether it’s a tribute to a fallen comrade, a cause you support or just an idea you’ve had in the back of your head for a long time, the possibilities for your design are only limited by your imagination.

I enlisted the help of Unique-ARs to materialize my own design idea. The process was a lot of fun and I felt like a kid waiting for Christmas morning once the design was finalized. I described to them what I wanted and quickly received a design mock-up to evaluate. We made a few small changes to the design and a second mock-up was produced. When it arrived I knew that I’d found something special. Installing the hand guard was easy – the box included instructions and there is an installation video on their website. As with most free-float hand guards, Unique-ARs uses a proprietary barrel nut that is included with each hand guard. They have models for both AR-15 and AR-10 platform rifles.

After completing my first build with a Unique-ARs custom hand guard, I find myself coming up with a variety of other ideas for future build themes. I’m excited to get started on the next one! By using a custom hand guard from Unique-ARs, engraving by Sure Shot Precision and what seems like endless options for coatings and colors, you are truly only limited by your own creativity.

Visit Unique-ARs at and on Facebook at

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Doug has a diverse background, both professionally and privately, in firearms, self-defense, and tactics... but most importantly, he’s a parent. He writes from the unique perspective of someone whose life involves combining concealment clothing, tactics training, and “everyday carry gear,” with car seats, exploding diapers, and questions like “why did you paint the dog with yogurt?” In our Tactical Parent series, Doug shares his perspective on gear, tricks and tips, defensive tactics, and best practices for parents who take an active role in protecting their family.


  1. I got mine a while back. I know what you mean about waiting on it to come. Frikin glued to the mail box 🙂 since then I’ve become pretty good friends with Mike.

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