A wise man once said “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” but in the case of AR-15 parts, imitation is often the quickest way to breakage and failure – not to mention the fact that it is theft.
Rainier Arms has done us all a favor by pointing out a counterfeit of their Raptor charging handle. You can see two telltale differences in the image above that can help you identify a fake. First, the two latch handles are similar in size on the counterfeit product while the genuine Raptor has 2 different sized latch handles. Second, the counterfeit uses different roll pins that don’t fold over on themselves.
Rainier Arms recommends only buying their products direct from Rainier Arms or from authorized dealers like Brownells.com. You can also check the Rainier Arms Facebook page to see them name unauthorized dealers that you should avoid.
The info about counterfeit having same-sized latches and the genuine one having a longer one on the forward assist side only applies to the 5.56 version. On the 7.62/308 version, both latches are exactly the same size because the forward assist is located just behind the shell deflector and does not reach all the way to the rear of the upper. Just wanted to point this out to anybody that was worried whether their 7.62/308 Raptor was a fake, as I did.