First Look: Franklin Armory OPS-16R Rifle

by Braxton Taylor

Franklin Armory is unveiling its new OPS-16R, a 5.56 NATO AR-15 pattern carbine chambered in that makes use of the Osprey Defense low-profile, patented, gas-piston system which uses a self-regulating design and allows uses to switch between suppressed and unsuppressed shooting without needing to manually adjust the firearm’s gas system directly. In addition to making use of a self-regulating configuration, the Osprey Defense gas piston system also omits the use of piston springs in order to reduce the number of working parts needed for reliability and smoothness.

Suppressor use on AR-15-pattern firearms is more popular than ever. In practical terms, when mounting a suppressor on a rifle, it sometimes affects how the gas system functions due to the increased backpressure caused by the suppressor. For many shooters, the solution is to opt out from the traditional direct-gas-impingement system in favor of an alternative that makes use of a piston and some sort of manual or self-regulating valve up front near the gas block. In addition to its unique piston actuated gas system, the new Franklin Armory OPS-16R is configured similar to other modern AR-15 designs with a full length M-Lok equipped handguard, flat top upper receiver, a B5 pistol grip and B5 SOPMOD stock. Up front, the 16 inch barrel has Franklin Armory’s proprietary Triumvir muzzle device attached to it.   

Franklin Armory sells the OPS-16R as a base model with a standard retail price of $1,350, and another version that ships with the Binary Trigger System for $1,540. For those who wish to build their own carbine, Franklin Armory also sells an OPS-16R complete upper receiver (including the Osprey Defense piston mechanism) for a retail price of $850. To learn more about the new Franklin Armory OPS-16R piston driven AR-15 carbine series, please visit


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