I am a big fan of the Blue Force Gear UWL (Universal Wire Loop). It is just so useful to mounting slings to platforms that are generally difficult to mount slings on. I keep one in my parts box so that I always have one on hand.
Blue Force Gear (BFG) recently introduced a new version of the UWL, the UWL with Push Button Socket, which has a socket for use with push-button QD sing swivels in addition to the sling loop. They have also introduced the UWL in a good looking new Flat Dark Earth color.
The new UWL consists of two main components: a coated steel cable and a machined aluminum sling loop/push button socket. The steel cable is attached in such a way that it forms a loop. This allows you to turn any attachment point on a longarm into a full size sling attachment point or even attach a sling completely independent of a dedicated attachment point.
There are numerous inventive ways that the UWL can be used. If you are a lefty and an AK shooter, the UWL can be attached to the front sling loop on the AK handguard and passed in between the barrel and gas tube to create a lefty friendly sling mounting point. I have used them to quickly add a sling to AR-15s but wrapping them around the delta ring or the buffer tube. They are one of the best rear sling mounting options for the FN SCAR. The possibilities are nearly endless.
The addition of the push button socket accomplishes a couple of things. First, it adds to the versatility of the UWL by allowing it to accept an additional type of sling connection. Second, it adds the new functionality of allowing to transition from a 2 point sling to a single point sling when the UWL is used as your rear sling attachment point.
Observations from Use
I tried the UWL with Push Button Socket on two rifles during testing: a fairly standard AKM and a borrowed FN SCAR 17. The UWL was well suited to both.
The AK was equipped with both the V2 and V3 sling plates from Echo Nine Three. The use of the Echo93 Sling Plates, allowed the UWL to be used as either a front or rear attachment point. The combination of the Echo Nine Three Sling Plates with the UWL as a rear attachment point worked very well. It positions the sling mounting point right where I like it (the rear of the receiver) and eliminates the need for a snap hook. If your AK happens to have a front rail with a push button QD sling mount on it, the UWL in conjunction with an Echo93 sling plate would also provide the ability to turn your 2 point sling into a single point sling.
The UWL seems like it was made for the FN SCAR rifles. The original UWL is a very common sight as the rear sling attachment point for SCAR shooters. It works extremely well with small loop that FN provided to attaching slings. If the original UWL was a good solution for SCAR shooters, the new UWL with Push Button Socket is a great solution due to the additional convertible single point sling functionality.
Like my original UWLs, this new version has a very robust finish that really hasn’t shown any use at all. The coating on the cable is extremely durable and keeps finish wear on your firearm to a minimum. The aluminum part of the UWL is well machined with rounded edges that are easy on the sling.
The push button socket is not rotation limited. I know many people have strong preferences for rotation limited sockets but I generally don’t. For this application, a rotation limited socket really wouldn’t make much of a difference since the UWL itself can tend to twist a bit.
The UWL with Push Button Socket looks great in its new color (FDE), has additional functionality versus the already great original UWL, and is still just as useful for solving sling mounting problems. Some users may balk at the lack of rotation limiters in the push button socket but they really wouldn’t make much of a difference in this application as they do in others. This gear deserves a space in your tool box.