(Note:  Article originally written by Max Slowik and published on Gunsamerica.com)

The Advanced Armament Corp. is launching a new standard for their in-house handguards called SquareDrop. Based on the open-source KeyMod standard, SquareDrop will work with KeyMod accessories in addition to AAC’s SquareDrop hardware.

The result is a lightweight, minimalist set of handguards with a fresh, sleek look that has a large, established amount of accessory support. They’re free-floating handguards that use an easy-to-remove turnbuckle locking system. The handguards are aluminum with a hard-anodized finish and AAC engravings.

SquareDrop by AAC: KeyMod Compatible Honey Badger Handguards

This turnbuckle screw fixes the handguard to the barrel nut. Anti-rotation tabs prevent the handguard from twisting off. The system unlocks easily for handguard removal. (Photo: AAC)

SquareDrop addresses one criticism a lot of people have regarding KeyMod: the looks. In the war between rail standards, a lot of people prefer Magpul’s M-Lok (or even the old Picatinny rail) based on looks alone. It also appears to remove more material than other negative mounting space standards which makes these handguards especially light.

AAC is kicking off their SquareDrop handguards in three lengths: 8 inches, 10.2 inches and 13.5 inches. AAC lists their weights at 6.4, 9 and 10.5 ounces, respectively. The design is octagonal and offers seven rows of SquareDrop sections with a standard Picatinny rail at 12 o’clock.

These handguards have an inner diameter of 1.3 inches, which is wide enough to fit around many rifle suppressors. It would be surprising if these handguards couldn’t accommodate a can since AAC is best-known for their suppressor products.

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(images courtesy of gunsamerica.com)