Magpul SL vs SLK (2023 UPDATE) Tell-All Comparison Guide

magpul sl vs slk
Alfred Mendoza

If you’re building an AR-15 lower or looking to upgrade from standard mil-spec furniture, we find the Magpul SL vs SLK stock a solid topic for discussion. Over the years, my team and I have tried several stocks, but we’re so intrigued by this comparison that we decided to try them out for ourselves. We’re quite impressed with one.

The Magpul SL (or Slim Line) is the standard version of the stock – the Magpul CTR’s successor. The SLK is the compact version, ostensibly for shorter blasters. Of note in the Magpul SL line’s spec is that it’s optimized for use with body armor, incorporating a rolled toe at the butt pad base.

The Magpul SLK also benefits from a significantly reduced butt contact area, which helps it fit the above plates. The Magpul SLK stock is a miniature version of the Magpul SL Stock and is only available for mil-spec buffer tubes. The SLK is also slimmer and more lightweight than the regular SL. The SLK does not use the same friction lock and does not lock up as tight as the slightly larger SL. Many people are complaining that it doesn’t have the “steel tabs” on the inside as the first SL stock did, so it’s got a lot more wobble.

Specification Chart


  • Model: Magpul SL stock
  • Length: 7.2 inches
  • Width: 1.578 inches
  • Weight: 9.6 oz.
  • Weigh with Receiver extension: 13.6 oz.


  • Model: Magpul SL-K stock
  • Length: 6.5 inches
  • Width: 1.25 inches
  • Weight: 7.9 oz.
  • Weigh with Receiver extension: 11.9 oz.

Detailed Comparison

Magpul SLK & Magpul SL Pricing

Magpul SLK is cheaper than the Magpul SL at an almost doubled price. Maybe it shouldn’t be a shock to learn this since the SLK is a slimmer and more compact version of the original stock. With the somewhat huge price difference, the Magpul SLK is the definite winner in this category.

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When it comes to Magpul SL vs SLK, both belong to Magpul’s slimline series but we think the Magpul SLK has a better design than the SL. The SLK is designed for compact PDW style weapons or users desiring a small and light stock and features a shorter and slimmer profile than the SL. It boasts a smaller rubber butt-pad with rolled toe for easy shouldering and sure grip, and an optional M-LOK QD Sling Mount for push-button style QD sling swivels, which the original Magpul SL doesn’t offer.

Magpul design

Ergonomics - Magpul SL or SLK

Ergonomically speaking, we find the Magpul SLK’s features better than the SL because of their design and weight differences. The SLK also locks tighter than the Magpul SL, which is a huge plus for us. Some may complain about it being too tight, but we think it’s better to be tighter than too loose to mount. When tried for a shot, the SLK provided maximum comfort, ergonomics, and maneuverability.

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Magpul SLK is made out of reinforced polymer and features an angled anti-slip rubber butt pad with a rolled toe for easier shouldering. Premium chrome-silicon lock spring that provides progressive locking and long service life makes these stock models standout. Since both models come from the same manufacturer, both are from almost the same materials. Hence, we decided to give this category a draw.

Magpul SL & SLK Installation

Although the Magpul SLK also collapses entirely on a six-position tube, small size helps to get into a quick shooting position with eyes through sights and has no wobble lock up. The Magpul SL is easier to adjust than the SLK. Being tighter and slimmer, it seemed more challenging to install the SLK on AR lowers. With this, the Magpul SL takes another win.

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magpul adjustability

Adjusting the Magpul SLK and SL is relatively easy, for they both feature a dual-side release latch that provides easy adjustment while remaining anti-snag.

After installation, it’s so easy to forget about these stocks because they stay in position unless you switch their release latches to adjust them.

Magpul SLK & Magpul SL Durability

Since both Magpul stock models are made of almost the same materials manufactured by the same company, their durability is relatively the same and is out of the question. Durability-wise, it is safe to claim that they offer similar sturdiness and life span.

Impact Mitigation

Both stock models feature a compact rubber butt-pad offers an anti-slip surface and increased impact protection and a rollover on the toe that allows for easier shoulder transitions and better fit when using body armor. But due to the Magpul SLK being tighter than the SL, the SLK offers better impact mitigation when firing, as claimed by many users. With this, SLK being tighter, it creates more impact protection, so it wins another category.

Magpul SL Pros & Cons



Magpul SLK Pros & Cons



Our Pick Between Magpul SLK & SL is...

In choosing between Magpul SL vs SLK, we pick the Magpul SLK because it is ergonomically better, more compact, and more lightweight. We also liked how it is tighter than the original Magpul SL, offering more impact mitigation and protection, and less wobble and frills when firing a shot.

For a good read on AR-15 accessories, here’s our Troy vs Magpul Bad Lever comparison here.

Our #1 Recommendation

Magpul SLK

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