SHWAT™ first reviewed the Battle Arms Development Ambidextrous Safety Selector (aka “BADASS”) back in 2012, before they were big time, before Brownells carried them, before most hunters and shooters had ever heard of them. They cost more than twelve times the price of a standard selector, one you probably got as a part of an AR-15 rifle. The obvious question here: Is it worth it?
Essentially, there’s nothing wrong with the standard AR-15 safety selector. It’s functional and even lightweight. If you bought a complete rifle, the six dollar part was probably part of it. It’s worked reliably for generations, so why think about spending real money for an upgrade? After all, the Battle Arms Development (BAD) selector used here costs $74.99. That’s ten boxes of ammo or a nice dinner out.
If you shoot left handed, the ambidextrous build of the Battle Arms selector is probably worth it. For the rest of us, the ambi feature is also a win. Having used these as a right hand shooter for years I now use my right thumb to push down from the “Safe” position to “Fire” and my right index finger to reach under the right side lever to pull back up to “Safe”. It’s fast and intuitive.
I prefer the short throw version of the Battle Arms Development ambidextrous selector. Instead of rotating 90 degrees from the three o’clock position (safe) to the six o’clock position (fire), it moves roughly 45 degrees (three o’clock to 4:30). It is faster and like my thumb riding the selector similar to how I shoot a 1911 pistol.
The Battle Arms Development ambi selector now comes in a broad variety of designs, ranging from window crank styled levers to lightweight ones, both standard and short lengths. I prefer the thicker levers as they provide outstanding surfaces for human touch to interface with. A right-handed shooter, I prefer the standard length lever for my right thumb and the short lever on the port side of the gun.
Pricing for the Battle Arms Development safety selector varies depending on the version you buy. The Brownells website lists them from $51.30 to $99. Worth it? Absolutely! Personally, I could care less about the few extra ounces. The interface is many times better than the standard safety selector. Since it’s ambidextrous, it’s twice as functional. If looks matter to you, the BAD selector smokes the standard one. There are no affiliate links here and we don’t make any money off these, but for five years if an AR is in house very long it gets a Battle Arms safety. That’s a resounding, “YES,” it’s worth it.
What do you think? Worth it? Like another selector better? Tell us why in the comments below!