Ballistic Advantage (BA) just launched their YouTube channel with a video about their 7.5″ BA Hanson Barrels. It is fitting that they kicked off with a video about their short barrels because, in my opinion, they do them very well and their 7.5″ barrels in particular have a reputation for running very well. It all comes down to gas port diameter and BA has shown that they are not afraid to go small on gas ports.
In fact, on every BA barrel I have seen, from their lower end to their premium offerings, the gas ports are consistently smaller than just about anything else I have put hands on. This contributes greatly to how “smooth” their barrels are under recoil. I haven’t had a single reliability issue with a BA upper or barrel that can be tied to the barrel. They function fine with a range of ammo and much of what I use is loaded to .223 specs, not the higher pressure 5.56.
It makes me wonder why some manufacturers go so large at the gas port. If you have ever torn down a high round count AR, you know that gas ports don’t get smaller over time. They start eroding from the moment you start shooting them so it makes sense to start out as small as you can and still allow for reliable function.
Check out Ballistic Advantage.