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10 Best AR-10 Bolt Carrier Groups (2023 Must-Read)

Best AR 10 Bolt Carrier Group

Any part of an AR-10 is indeed essential to your gun’s overall performance. However, the bolt carrier group is one of the more important parts, as it’s responsible for making the semi-automatic fire possible.

We’ve tested, reviewed, and compared the best AR-10 carrier group to give you this list below. 


Wilson Combat AR308 Low Mass Bolt Carrier Group


J P Enterprises 308 AR Low Mass Bolt Carrier Group


Aero Precision AR 308 Bolt Carrier Group

1. Wilson Combat AR308 Low Mass Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

This is the same BCG that Wilson puts on their custom rifles and we were happy to get our hands on one to test on the range. It is a newcomer to our list and we were so pleased with its performance, we quickly awarded it our #1 pick.

This 8620 hardened low-mass steel carrier is smooth with no forward assist cuts. It can be tuned with your gas system for lower recoil impulse. The bolt material is aerospace grade 9310 MPI inspected. The Nickel Boron plated finish looks slick in every sense of the word.

Installation was simple and required no mods. The machined ejector and S7 extractor easily handled the pressure of round after round of hot, .308 caliber. Altogether, this set up is a bit on the heavier side at 15.5 oz but it seems Wilson used every ounce well. The result during testing was smooth operation and no malfunctions.



2. J P Enterprises 308 AR Low Mass Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

The only reason this option wasn’t named our number one pick is due to the higher price tag, but if it’s in your budget, go for it. This complete carrier assembly is a great value and after testing it was clear why this option has a higher price tag. In all of our tests it performed smoothly with no malfunctions, plus felt recoil was noticeably reduced on our large-caliber AR rifles.

Every element seems to be designed so well. Wide carrier rails provide extra bearing surface which improves bolt alignment and reduces wear. The JP EnhancedBolt™ was designed for high-heat, high-impact use and we saw firsthand the smooth action this bolt acheived. The carrier key is already installed and staked. Even with all of these performance enhancing features it only adds. 0.9 oz of weight to your build. Plus it was easy to install and looks great.




3. Aero Precision AR 308 Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

The Aero Precision AR 308 makes a great partner for a big-bore rifle build. The bolt carrier group is HPT inspected, and it bears a laser engraved Aero Precision, which adds to its aesthetic. 

It is machined from 8620 steel, and the case is hardened. What’s more, these are black nitride coated, which reduces friction when used for long-lasting performance. The package comes with a retaining pin as well.



4. JP Enterprises Complete JPBC

Why We Picked It:

JP Enterprises focuses on reliability with its 416 stainless steel full mass operating system. It features a forward assist serration as well as a dust cover notch. 

It features extra bearing surfaces to give you smoother operation, enhance bolt alignment, and lower wear and tear in the upper receiver. It’s an upgrade from the factory default BCG.

Compared to the other products on the list, this has a longer Mil-spec. JP also improved on the felt impulse. It reduces the reciprocating mass within the operating system, so it moves less during cycling.



5. Next Level Armament DLC Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

This Next Level Armament hardened, shot peened and MPI inspected bolt is machined from SAE 4140ph high-grade steel providing a hard surface and a strong core which makes it more resistant to structural failure. The carrier is also machined from 4140ph steel to aerospace tolerances, making it strong and durable. The gas key comes staked to mil-spec tolerances. The rear diameter of the carrier is expanded allowing for smooth cycling in the buffer tube.

All internal parts are coated with DLC for protection against abrasion and oxidation, preventing surface pressures from leading to scuffing and cold welding. Plus it cleans easily. The whole assembly looks slick and seems to be durable and long-lasting. Right and left-hand models are available.



6. CMC Triggers Enhanced AR Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

The CMC Bolt Carrier Group is created for shooters who require a bolt carrier group that demands superior performance in their line of work. 

The carrier assembly is made to reduce carrier tilt during recoil. It increases reliability by relocating key bearing surfaces strategically. 

It has fewer points of contact, which results in less friction. An increase in mass makes sure there’s proper gas pressures, and it escalates dwell time. Overall, the CMC bolt carrier group reduces title recoil. It’s an all-around bolt carrier group that fits well in rifles and different application types.



7. Tacfire .308 Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

The Tacfire .308 is serrated for use with forward assist. The assembly comes with a fully staked gas key.

The bolt is made out of sturdy 9310 steel, and the carrier is 8620 steel. The gas key and extractor are QPQ Nitride treated and the whole setup seems really durable.



8. TRYBE Defense Milspec Complete AR 10 .308 BCG

Why We Picked It:

The TRYBE Defense AR10 .308 is one of the best bolt carrier groups for quality and price-value ratio. It’s ready assembled, meaning you can drop it into your AR10 build right away.

These are standard Mil-Spec carriers coatings that deliver high-core strength and a rugged exterior coating for wear and tear. It is 8620 steel carrier nitride treated and features an enhanced ejector and extractor pin.

If you’re looking for a high-value bolt carrier group, the TRYBE Defense Mil-Spec is a good BCG to buy. It features high-core strength for durability, and it lasts for an extended period.



9. Faxon Firearms .308 9310 Bolt Carrier Complete

Why We Picked It:

The Faxon Firearms .308 bolt carrier group is a high-performing bolt carrier group. It’s constructed with a 9310 tool steel that delivers durability. 

In addition, the .308 bolt carrier group features chambered bolt lugs for reliability. Another thing we like about it is that it is super finished to decrease fouling and friction, which gives you a smooth performance.



10. ODIN Works AR10 Bolt Carrier Group

Why We Picked It:

The ODIN Works BCG is made for multi-caliber use, working with .308, 6.5 CM, 6 CM, and other calibers that use the case head size. 

It features a smaller diameter firing pin, and the pin hole helps with high in pressure cartridges.

It is MPI and HPT tested and made in specialized factories.



What Is Included In A Bolt Carrier Group?


Bolt Carrier

The bolt carrier is responsible for housing all of the parts of a bolt carrier group. Normally, it’s made out of hardened steel, like 8620 steel and 9310 steel.

It absorbs the pressure of the gas from each of the rounds you fire.

Carrier Key

The carrier key is also referred to as the gas key, which is situated at the top of the bolt alignment as a protrusion. The carrier and gas key is hallowed out, and it absorbs the gas that travels down to the gas tube.   

Without the gas key, both the extractor spring & bolt of the AR-19 are unable to rotate. 

Bolt Gas Rings

The bolt gas rings are made to trap the gas of each spent round, which allows the bolt to work. Without the bolt gas rings, the gas of each round simply disperses through the rifle’s upper receiver.

Bolt and Extractor

The bolt and extractor come together as a single unit but come in dual functions. It is designed to hook onto the exterior rim of each round and keeps them in place when you’re loading them.

Firing Pin

The stainless steel firing pin strikes the primer a round every time you pull the trigger. The firing pin is situated at the bolt’s head, and without the firing pin, the rifle won’t fire. It often has a chrome-lined interior.

Cam Pin

The cam pin stops the bolt from rotating too far. You can find the pin in a hole, which is located next to the bolt.

Exclusive Buyer’s Guide

Lunde Studio Buyers Guide_v2

Type of BCG

There are three types of bolt carrier groups, namely semi-automatic, full-auto, and low-mass. 

The semi-auto carriers are only for a semi-auto rifle, which is generally designed to MIL-SPEC, which is often standard. 

The full-auto is for full-auto rifles, and these are longer and weigh more than the semi-auto. Lastly, low-mass make lightweight bolt carriers for quicker follow-up shots.

Keep in mind that lighter bolt carriers have significantly lower reciprocating mass. 


Steel is the most common material for bolt carrier groups because of how durable and heat-resistant it is. (1) What’s more, it isn’t expensive.

Another option is aluminum. It’s lighter than steel and is often used for low mass bolt carrier groups. 

Typically, a low-mass bolt carrier group is constructed from SAE 9310 stainless steel. What’s more, a low mass bolt carrier body is typically treated with a chromium nitride finish. 

Lastly, the titanium bolt carrier group is lighter, but you’ll find them much stronger. It’s heat and pressure-resistant, but it is pricier.


Phosphate finish is considered Mil-Spec, and the phosphate-coated BCG is one of the most common coatings you can find in the market. Phosphate finish is highly durable, and it’s corrosion-resistant. 

Meanwhile, Nickel Boron finish is highly corrosion-resistant and almost friction-free. You’ll nickel Boron easy to clean, and it works smoothly. These are most common on regular bolt carrier groups.  

Black nitride is referred to as salt bath nitride or QPQ. It’s a treatment that hardens steel, which makes it more corrosion-resistant.

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MPI Tested

It’s essential for a bolt carrier group as MPI tested, meaning the bolt carrier group has already been inserted into a magnetic field. 

MPI wasn’t used in the earliest days where firearms were still in breech loading rifles.

What’s more, the bolt carrier group is bathed in a liquid solution of magnetic particles. It’s an effective method that reveals fissures, cracks, and other flaws that a human eye cannot detect.

By doing so, the bolt carrier group you purchase is durable and safe to use for an extended period. At the least, it should be able to last for tens of thousands of rounds without experiencing issues.

HPT Tested

HPT stands for high-pressure testing, and it means that the bolt carrier group can fire high-pressure cartridges. 

If your bolt carrier group can handle high-pressure rounds without any hiccups, then it means it can handle standard cartridges without any hiccups.

Drop-In Design

A bolt carrier group with a drop-in design means that gunsmith services aren’t necessary to have it fit your AR-10. 

It requires no tools to install your bolt carrier group to your rifle as well. A drop-in design means that the bolt carrier group is pre-assembled and ready to use. 

Otherwise, you have to assemble each of the parts together yourself, making it a hassle. For a drop-in design, replacing your stock on an AR-10 is one of the breezier customizations.

Our Team's Selection Process

selection process

Overall Performance

We spent time testing each of these bolt carrier groups on the list. The ones who made it to our top 10 have the capability of firing pressure cartridges rated above the SAAMI specifications. 

Weapon Compatibility

The bolt carrier groups on the list are compatible with the AR-10. These are easy to install, which saves you time. 

Product Quality

The products on our list all have positive reviews from customers. The bolt carrier groups have proven their durability, performance, and quality through buyer feedback.

What’s Our Choice For The Best AR-10 Bolt Carrier Group?

After our original round of testing and comparing, we are confident that the Wilson Combat AR308 Low Mass BCG is the best AR-10 bolt carrier group for most builds.

This is the same BCG that Wilson puts on their custom rifles. This 8620 hardened low-mass steel carrier is smooth with no forward assist cuts. It can be tuned with your gas system for lower recoil impulse. The bolt material is aerospace grade 9310 MPI inspected. The Nickel Boron plated finish is slick. What’s more, installation was simple, operation was smooth and we experienced no malfunctions.


Our #1 Recommendation

Wilson Combat AR308 Low Mass Bolt Carrier Group

Alfred Mendoza

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