Choosing the proper sling depends on the purpose, the rifle, and the shooter. There is no one-size-fits all when it comes to slings. There are however, a few things to consider to make the choice easier in the sea of options.
The Types of AR 15 Slings
There are four major types of slings to choose from. We will describe each and give some pros and cons for each. We want to help you make a decision about the right sling for you.
Single Point Slings
The single point slings mount to the rear of the rifle. They are the most easily maneuvered. This is both a benefit as well as a drawback. Because the rifle is only secured at one point, it is great to use when limited positions are needed, such as in a vehicle.
However, because the rifle is only attached in one place it can make the hands free carry a bit clumsy. Not to mention because the rifle usually points downward if the operator bends to a knee, the rifle may plunge into the ground.
A single point mount is generally fastened to the buffer tube plate attachment. There are many ways to attach a strap to that connector. Such as QD, strap, slot, and hole.
Dual Point Slings
A two point sling offers far more stability when working hands free as the weapon is usually held closer to the body. The greater stability comes at a cost however, making switching shoulders difficult or impossible.
Mounting can be accomplished in various ways in multiple locations. The key is for a comfortable fit and usable placement for the attachments. For all intensive purposes, the dual point sling is the most flexible and versatile of the sling options.
Three Point Slings
The three point sling is the most secure sling for your weapon. It is the best for keeping the most control when strapped to the body. It offers the least forgiving strap during use. Because there is webbing and strapping the entire length of the weapon, it can become cumbersome and awkward to use when deploying or shooting.
These offer the largest versatility with a strap. Because you can customize and modify your hold based on your needs at that time. Convertible straps do not require separate or detachable components that may get lost. Switch up your hold as needed.
Guide for Two Point AR 15 Sling Attachment
1. The Components
These are the terms and items you should know about when looking into sling purchase and use.
The strap is used for carrying large AR pistols and rifles. It is used to hang the weapon in front of the shooter. Often with the stack near the dominate shoulder and the barrel facing downwards.
The material the straps are configured of varies. Some are made from leather, nylon webbing, and paracord. The durability and ruggedness depend on the product's material. They vary in price and come in different sizes, colors, lengths, and configurations.
Connectors are components and materials that join or connect the sling and the mount. They have a wide range of styles and are often metal fixed loop swivels, quick-detach, or sling loops.
The mount is the quick detach swivel mount, CQD mounts, and paraclips. It is essentially the part on an AR rifle that joins or connects the attachment hardware.
Shooters can also simply create a loop of cord or sling material around the stock or the handguard without needing any connectors or special adapters.
2. Attachment Hardware
The attachment hardware will be mostly dependent on the sling of your choice. Each sling has a suggested method from the manufacturer. You are however able to use your imagination and ingenuity when devising your sling connections. But here are the most common that are readily on the market.
It’s a version of the stud design and swivel loop. Simply press a button to connect or remove it from the rifle. This is a great way to use the same sling with different rifles.
It’s a metal or polymer carabineer or hook that you can use to clip to the mounting ring. It can be used when easy and fast removal of the sling is a must.
Fixed or Swivel Loop
The fixed loop is where you can directly connect your rifle to the strap. However, it is not technically considered a connector.
The swivel loop is a ring that is attached to the rifle’s mounting studs. Some of them rotate while others do not, be careful when you choose if that is important to you.
Buffer Tube End Plates
It’s an attachment spot on the rifle, most often circular in shape. It comes in single or ambidextrous configurations.
Some shooters prefer a specific type of sling for each rifle, so they opt for the fixed or swivel loop. Meanwhile, others prefer to have one sling that can be fitted on different rifles, so they choose clip or QD connectors. There is no right or wrong here.
3. Mount the Rear Point
This does not have to be first, but you have to start mounting somewhere. So this is as good a place as any.
The best way to mount this is to be sure it is secure using whichever mounting connectors you choose. The next thing to remember is be sure it is not twisted, that will make using it less comfortable.
Attach the QD to the side of the rifle. Quick tip: if you’re right-handed, attach it to the right side but if you’re left-handed, attach it to the left side.
Go slowly and make sure you keep the sling from twisting.
Here are a few additional considerations:
You will have better rifle maneuverability if you mount further away on the handguard.
Your weapon is more stable the more space between the rear and front points.
If you mount on the back of your receiver, you can manipulate your weapon more easily.
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4. Mount the Front Point
You can mount the front connection point anywhere on the rail of the receiver or the handguard.
If you use a QD, push the button and slide the cord through on the low profile sling mount, and go back through the buckle.
5. Adjust the Sling
Put the sling on your dominant shoulder and make adjustments. Decide on the length but be sure it won’t get in the way while maneuvering the weapon. Pull the running end of the side to achieve the size and tightness that you need.
Once you have a strong idea about where you want your weapon slung you may cut the extra part of the cord to prevent any entanglements or obstruction while manipulating your weapon. But I suggest you tape it so if you need more size adjustment, you have it. Especially if you’re wearing thick layers of clothing during the winter.
Choosing and Buying the Right Sling
Hopefully after reading this, you have some insight on choosing the correct sling for your shooting needs. In some cases you might even find yourself using different slings for each rifle set up. No matter your choice always pick a reliable source when making your final purchase decision.