Ruger’s new AR-556 Optics Carbine swaps the front sight for a railed gas block

01/16/19 7:30 AM | by

Ruger's new AR-556 Optics Carbine swaps the front sight for a railed gas block

The flat top Picatinny upper receiver and same-plane gas block is billed by Ruger as ideal for easy attachment of magnified optic, red dot or open sights. (Photos: Ruger)

The latest chapter in Ruger’s AR-556 series uses a milled gas block with an integral Picatinny rail in place of the more traditional front sight.

Essentially the same platform at their original AR-556, Ruger’s new Optics Carbine variant has both a flat top Picatinny upper and a same-plane railed gas block that allows end-users to easily attach accessories, open sights and/or the glass of their choice. The gas block is located at the carbine-length (M4) position on the 16.10-inch, 1:8-inch RH-twist, 4140 chrome-moly steel barrel.

The new Optics Carbine model, left, is the same as the standard AR-556, except for the sighting option on the top half, and comes in at a hair cheaper.

Like the rest of the series, the rifle uses a 7075-T6 aluminum receiver with forward assist, 9310 alloy steel bolt that is peened and proofed, 5.56 NATO chamber, chrome-plated and staked gas key, M4-style buttstock, and Mil-Spec buffer tube. Available in matte black, it ships with a single 30-round PMAG.

Retail is $789, which is sawbuck cheaper than the standard model, and actual prices at the dealer will likely be significantly lower.

Latest Reviews

  • Trophy Xtreme

    Optics Review: Taking a Peek with Trophy Xtreme Binoculars

    Bushnell sent over some Trophy Xtreme binoculars for Guns.com to take for a test drive to see if they measure...

    Read Now
  • Pocket-Sized Powerhouse: The Diamondback DB9 Gen 4

    Pocket-Sized Powerhouse: The Diamondback DB9 Gen 4

    We looked at Diamondback Firearms' newest version of their micro-compact DB9 9mm pistol, the Gen 4, and compared it side-by-side...

    Read Now
  • Five-SeveN

    The FN Five-Seven: A Phenomenally Fun Plinking Gun

    What happens when you pair the FN brand with a fun plinking round? The FN Five-Seven, of course! The Five-Seven...

    Read Now
  • Beretta Carry Update: A Look at the New 92X Compact

    Beretta Carry Update: A Look at the New 92X Compact

    We looked at Beretta’s newest version of their iconic Model 92, the 92X, specifically the Compact variant, and compared it...

    Read Now