ARBuildJunkie recently sat down with Joshua Reed, Outside Sales/LE and Military Subject Matter Expert at Strike Industries to discuss the company, some of its most popular items, and what the state of the industry is in his view. He also helps us put together an ideal build for someone new to ARs.
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Q: Can we start with a bit of brief background on Strike Industries?
A: The company is just about 8 years old. The first product we came out with
From then on, the joke in the company is “too many beers, too many bar napkins.” But, in many ways, it seems to not be a joke anymore. Every day we are coming in with new stuff. We source ideas from everyone in the company. Everyone can come to our design team to try to make something work.
That said, what a lot of people see on our Instagram page, or on our website is the rapid pace that we put stuff out at. But they don’t get to see the work that goes into it behind the scenes.
Obviously, the first thing that happens is some sort of concept. That’s where the bar napkin joke comes in. These ideas can come from anywhere. From there, an initial rough drawing is done. What we’re looking for is: what is the heart of the function of that product?
Because, you can make a product that looks good, but if it doesn’t have a function, there’s no point in it.
That said, you can make a product that functions great that looks like dirt and nobody
You can make a product that functions well and looks
So once we have the rough drawing, we then try to figure out what the sweet spot is, what are we trying to get out of it, and how can we make it work. Because of this approach, I believe we have a dollar-to-quality value that is very unique.
I must also point out that our design team at Strike Industries is also great. Of course, we give our ideas to our engineers that make it work well. But, then we give it to our designers. They are the ones that make it look like a Strike Industries product. Our designers have just such a flair for picking out the right view on something and making it look special. You do end up buying things based on looks. Looks are not everything, but it is nice when you spend money to have it look nice.
Q: Your stocks are very unique. Let’s start with the Strike Industries Viper Stock. Why would someone go with this stock versus some of your other offerings?
A: When we take a look at the stocks we offer, our flagship is the Viper. It is a lightweight, good strength, comfortable stock, whether you are shooting with a bare chest or with plates.
The Viper is something that if I am building a good standard rifle, something that is a patrol rifle, or if its something I am going to have my kids learn to shoot on, or if I just want a comfortable stock – this is going to be the one I go to.
Q: A lot of builders love the look and function of the Viper PDW Stock, which is different from the Viper. How do you see that being used?
A: My favorite without a doubt is our Viper PDW stock. I have the longest-serving prototype on one of my guns that has 14,000 rounds through it, and it just fits me perfect. When it is in retraction it works
Also, in regards to the Viper PDW, we are very excited to now have a stabilizer version that we are starting orders on soon. People have been waiting on it. So, if you want an AR pistol, and you want the ability to shoot in that closed option, or open it up to that full arm stabilizer position, that’s going to be a great one to choose.
Q: The Pit Viper was released not long ago. Where does that fit into your lineup of stocks? Also, it’s got a very unique look to it. Is it comfortable to shoot?
A: Our Pit Viper stock is a 3-
It only works with our enhanced buffer tube, because to get it that small and to have it have strength back there, we had to do a secondary rail in that buffer tube…so you can buy that in a package set.
And yes, people ask how comfortable it is because it looks like a cheese grater. Well, I shot it on a video shoot, I put 800 rounds through it with no issues whatsoever.
Q: Strike Industries has released a lot of muzzle devices. What should builders steer towards in a new AR build?
A: If we got known for any muzzle device it would be our Cookie Cutter. It is made for SBRs, AR pistols, any short system throwing a lot of gas forward. It allows all that gas to get pushed out and away. It is loud, it is obnoxious, and it throws fireballs, and makes cool Instagram videos. Anyway, that’s the one that got our name known, but we must have made over 20 different muzzle breaks. We’ve discontinued a few as we’ve come out with better ones.
As far as ones that get a lot of recognition today, the J-Comp is outstanding and makes a very flat shooting gun.
That said, our King Comp is one I shoot the most. It is double chambered and has a really good signature to it. It gives you a real flat shooter that you can rip rounds out as fast as you want with zero issues.
Q: Finally, what is the idea behind your
Oppressor, which we see on quite a few shorter builds.
A: With our muzzle breaks, as you shorten your AR pistols and SBRs, the sound signatures are getting higher and higher. People can take damage from concussion and hearing. We came out…originally we had manufactured an OEM for another company…one of the first concussion reduction devices.
Last year, we came out with our
Q: As a company known for a lot of innovation and creativity, where do you see the market heading? Any trends you anticipate?
A: Ages ago, there were only a few big companies, and you couldn’t get a gun anywhere else. 10-15 years ago, when people realized that anyone with a machine shop could apply for an FFL and become a manufacturer, we saw this explosion in the market…Tons of different shops, parts coming out, and the buying atmosphere was intense. With that, a lot of innovations happened left, right, and center. That said…Lately, I think I see a retraction in the industry and I, think consumers are getting very aware of quality.
So, what we are going to see is a better price for better quality. Also, I think you will see a lot of companies come out and make
For example, right now I have a Sig Sauer MCX right next to me that I am playing with because…why not make parts for it? I could go on listing every gun that I want to make parts for, and that makes me excited. Its great for guys like me because we get to engage and just
Q: Finally, any advice for a new builder?
A: If I was talking to a brand new builder, I would say let’s keep it basic. Let’s go ambidextrous safety, 16” barrel, nice muzzle break that’s going to make it pleasant to shoot, so throw a J Comp on there.
I’d do a free float rail on there. Probably a 13.5 or so. So you’re getting a standard build. Finally, just a Viper stock on the back with a standard buffer tube.
There’s no reason a new builder has to put together a $3,000 rifle. I’d rather them put money into ammo and training, get good and maybe take some friends shooting. That’s what we need.
We need the excitement of the ability to get good at a skill, and that’s what firearms are….its just a skill, these are just tools. We just need people to understand the responsibility and the enjoyment, and the enjoyment of being responsible for yourself.
Tremendous thanks to Joshua Reed, Outside Sales/LE and Military Subject Matter Expert at Strike Industries for taking the time to speak to us for this interview.
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