ALG Defense is the sister company to Geissele Automatics. While the latter has won a hard-earned reputation as a manufacturer of premium AR aftermarket triggers, ALG Defense is warranting attention on their own merits. Started by Amy Lynn Geissele (hence, ALG) in 2012, ALG Defense brings a pedigree of precision machining and innovation to the world of aftermarket triggers.
I’ve been working with ALG’s ACT lately, their Advanced Combat Trigger for the AR15 platform. Designed with mil-spec geometry and pull weight, ALG has done everything possible to improve performance while adhering to the M4 trigger guidelines. The trigger, hammer, pins, springs and disconnector have all been coated with either nickel-boron or nickel-teflon to increase wear resistance, surface hardness and to reduce the co-efficient of friction.
The ACT comes with two different hammer springs. The purple reduced power spring gives around a 4.5 lb pull-weight and is designed for recreational and target shooters. The reduced force applied by the purple spring may fail to ignite some harder primers, so in tactical or defensive uses the tan spring is recommended. Said tan spring increases trigger pull weight to around 6 lbs, which is above the minimum M4 platform specification of 5.5 lbs and well below the platform maximum of 9 lbs.
Tech specs, geometry and coatings aside, the ACT’s improvement over a stock mil-spec trigger is all in the pull. Some off-the-shelf mil-spec triggers may be a little lighter, some may be a great deal heavier. The ACT improves the consistency of the trigger pull by reducing geometric variables and friction between mating surfaces. Also changed is a reduction in “grittiness” during trigger pull. Many rack grade AR/M4 pattern rifles feel like they have sand between the disconnector and the hammer hook. The ACT has a much smoother “slide”, and lacks the jumps in trigger-pull pressure needed to overcome the “grits”.
When I headed to the range for a day of rifle testing with Graham Baates, I took along a personal rifle I’m using for deer season to get a solid zero. As we were shooting at 100 yard paper targets, I figured this was a great time to test out the ACT’s ability to group well. The rifle is an SBR’d AR, 7.5″ .300 BLK barrel in a “Honey Badger”-ish configuration. It previously had a Geissele SSA-E which was a bit overkill on such a gun.
After the first round popped off, I didn’t notice the trigger again. It did pull in a very similar fashion as the mil-spec triggers so many of us are used to. The improved creep and crisper break were slight yet tangible improvements. Despite using an optic with a 2 MOA dot, I printed 1.5″ and 2″ groups at 100 yards using Barnes T-TSX 110 gr rounds. Here’s where the only rub came in: the T-TSX rounds have primers that I wouldn’t consider to be on the soft end of the scale. Using the lighter purple hammer spring, I had a couple of light primer strikes so I changed over to the heavier (standard) weight spring. Everything was roses after that!
The ACT proved to be a solid improvement over the stock mil-spec trigger. If you don’t want to fork over the premium price that a target trigger demands, or if you are in a department/unit where modifying the trigger too much is a no-fly, definitely consider ALG Defense’s Advanced Combat Trigger. At $69, you aren’t going to find another accuracy upgrade with as much bang for your buck. Check it out!