Christensen Arms has partnered with Kyle Lamb and Viking Tactics to produce the Christensen Arms VTAC-15 rifle. Based upon the Christensen Arms CA-15 rifle, the VTAC-15 will be over a pound lighter while still offering incredible design and accessory improvements.
Christensen Arms is a leader in carbon fiber technology and production in the rifle market, including the very popular AR-15 rifle. There are many benefits of carbon fiber barrel designs, including improved accuracy and longevity. Viking Tactics was founded by Retired Sergeant Major Kyle Lamb, who spent over 21 years in the U.S. Army, including 15 years in Special Forces. The match-up of these two companies has produced an outstanding AR-15 for serious and professional shooters.
Benefits of Carbon Fiber Barrels
- Safety – Graphite barrel casing is 3-4x stronger than steel
- Accuracy – Graphite barrel casing is 4-5x stiffer than steel/per weight
- Comfort/Mobility – Graphite/epoxy barrel casing is 5-6x lighter than steel
- Durability – Graphite barrel casing is 100% weatherproof
- Quality – Graphite barrel lining is match grade 416R stainless steel
- Longevity – Graphite increases barrel life by approximately 25%.
According the Christensen Arms, Carbon-fiber barrels have a zero coefficient of thermal expansion, while steel barrels expand and contract with temperature changes (hot or cold). Since the temperature through steel barrels does not remain uniform, the steel barrel can warp over time and use. These effects cause the bullet point of impact to change.
The Christensen Arms carbon-fiber barrels do not respond to internal or external temperature change, resulting in accurate shot placement over an extended time and use. Christensen Arms notes that independent tests show that the carbon wrap keeps the underlying steel layer approximately 25% cooler than a normal steel barrel, which in turn adds to the life of the barrel.
Christensen Arms VTAC-15 Specifications
- Upper/Lower Receiver – Machined billet 7075 T6 aircraft-grade aluminum
- Barrel Material – Match grade carbon fiber wrapped, or 416 fluted stainless steel
- Receiver Finish – Hard coat Type III anodized, black
- Operating System – mid-length direct impingement
- Caliber – 5.56mm NATO
- Twist Rate – 1:8
- Overall Length –
- Barrel Length – 16.0″
- Weight – 5.8 lbs. (carbon fiber wrapped barrel), 5.5 lbs. (fluted steel)
- Trigger – Skeletonized VTAC self-contained
- Handguard – 15.0″ Free-floated aerospace-grade carbon fiber
- Accessory Attachment – Full coverage key mod system
- Buttstock – BCM Gunfighter collapsible
- Pistol Grip – Magpul MOE
- Flash Hider – Christensen Arms titanium stand-off, 1/2 – 28 tpi
- Bolt Carrier Group – Nitride-coated
- Accuracy – Sub MOA
- MSRP – $2850 (carbon fiber); $2650 (fluted stainless steel).
Christensen Arms VTAC-15 Features
The Christensen Arms VTAC-15 is full of great features. In addition, to the carbon wrapped barrel option, the hand guard is also made from carbon fiber. The 15″ free-floated hand guard is octagonal in shape and has a complete key mod attachment system. The carbon fiber reduces overall weight, while providing superior heat dissipation. The surfaces are smooth and snag free, unlike traditional Picatinny quad-rails.
The upper and lower receivers fit together very nicely and have tight tolerances ensuring almost no movement during firing, assisting in superb accuracy. Both receivers have a uniquely chiseled appearance, and the VTAC-15 magazine well has a flared opening providing shooters easier and more confident magazine loading.
The pistol grip is a Magpul MOE grip, and the trigger guard is expanded downward for use with gloves. The VTAC skeletonized trigger is a self-contained system that has a flat trigger face. Some shooters believe the flat-faced trigger promotes smoother and more accurate shooting as it directs the trigger’s motion straight back instead of in an arc like many curved triggers.
The Bravo Company Manufacturing (BCM) Gunfighter butt stock has a snag free design, with no sharp edges to become entangled with the shooter’s gear or clothing. The Gunfighter stock has an integrated soft rubber butt pad, and (2) different types of ambidextrous sling mounting options, including QD swivel sockets. The patented internal adjustment mechanism ensures that each adjustment is secure and there is no rattling or movement once locked in. The adjustment handle is on the bottom of the stock and runs the front 2/3 of the Gunfighter stock. This enlarged adjustment bar makes adjusting the stock fast and sure.
The Christensen Arms VTAC-15 also has an upgraded bolt carrier group (BCG). Completely coated with a nitride finish, the VTAC-15 BCG has excellent corrosion protection. In addition, the nitride coating actually produces a smoother finish that improves function and reliability, while reducing carbon build-up and adherence.
History of Christensen Arms
Dr. Roland Christensen has a Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering and initially used his expertise to develop a company producing high-quality and specialized parts for the medical and aerospace industries. In fact, Dr. Christensen’s medical products company still produces some of the finest prosthetics available for amputees. His aerospace company has produced aircraft wings and other specialized parts.
Being a life-long shooter, Dr. Christensen turned his expertise to his passion, and developed a superior barrel that consists of a stainless steel liner, wrapped in high quality carbon fiber. The success of his barrels led Dr. Christensen to start his own firearms company producing complete rifles and Model 1911 handguns. Christensen Arms has gained tremendous respect in the firearms community for quality and innovation.
Retired SGM Kyle Lamb spent over 15 years in U.S. Army Special Forces, including action in Somalia, Bosnia, and Iraq – both Desert Storm and Iraqi Freedom. He was involved in the infamous “Black Hawk Down” incident. He helped start Viking Tactics which produces quality firearm and shooter accessories, as well as providing outstanding firearms training courses. The combination of Christensen Arms and Kyle Lamb has truly produced an outstanding AR-15 rifle.
Having handled the CA-15 and other Christensen rifles on several occasions, I can attest that these are well-balanced, incredibly lightweight rifles made to the tightest tolerances. I was able to shoot a Christensen Arms CA-10 at SHOT Show and was extremely impressed with its heft, accuracy, and minimal recoil firing .308 rounds. I have been so impressed with the Christensen Arms quality that I am seriously considering purchasing a rifle as my go-to rifle.
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