Bad scope mounts can mean poor results when you set up your optics on the AR-15 rifle. While you need not to spend the farm on a new system, you do need to pay attention to how that rifle will be used and the requirements involved when using various sights on your gunning platform.
The following are some suggestions about the best scope mounts and which ones can work out well as a sight mounting system on the AR-15.
Burris AR-PEPR Scope Mount
American Defense Recon
Warne Scope Mount
Best Scope Mounts for AR-15
1. Burris AR-PEPR Scope Mount
The Burris AR-PEPR Scope Mount is outstanding when it comes to mounting glass on your AR-15.
The possible choices in positions are many leaving the door wide open for any and all individual options as to the eye relief level used and the amount of glass you want hanging over the receiver.
This is a quick detach system meaning two bolts and the Weaver rail and you're off the receiver completely.. This takes about 15 seconds or less if you have the necessary tools at hand.
The riflescope adjustment options give you up to a 2” choice along with the cantilever angle that makes for a very usable mount.
According to me, the mount rates high. When compared with the three of them I have used in the past, these AR mounts are as good as many others that cost far more.
To be sure, this scope mount will get the job done whether you are in the field, are shooting targets, or are engaged in combat.
2. American Defense Recon
American Defense offers a series of Recon cantilever style riflescope mounts. These are all overhanging units with setups for 1” through 35 mm tube sizes.
This quick release mount is built for flat top AR-15/M-16 applications and is flexible in terms of positioning as a stand-alone system or with other top rail options.
Machined from 6061 T6 aluminum and anodized coated in black, this is a good looking and well-built scope mounting options.
The mount makes use of the “Auto-Lock” patent pending lock system. This lock accommodates both mil-spec and non-mil-spec rails.
The outside forward ring to outside rear ring measures 4.48". The length inside of the forward ring to the rear of the rear ring measures 2.52“.
3. Nikon P-Series
Nikon, the manufacturer of all types of optical equipment, markets two types of rail mounts. The first is the two-piece Picatinny rail mount. The second is the one-piece mount that uses a cantilever design.
Except for the two methods of getting the ring into the rail, they are about the same in terms of the ring design.
Made in a black finish with aluminum, the two-piece mount is set for the AR-15. Some additional height may be seen when mounted to the low flat Weaver rail system that is used on all non H-bar rifles.
This mount is designed for the standard 1” scope tube and is a solid metal mount that lacks any external adjustments. This mount is not built to be used on police and military sight systems that have larger tube sizes.
This mount was built for sporting purposes.
The second mount that is the sister to the two-piece mount is the one-piece mount. This one is a cantilever mount that is strong, simple and allows some flexible movement up and down the rail when adding standard scopes or related sight equipment to the AR-15.
4. CCOP MNT 1516
Turning to a 30mm tube mount the CCOP MNT 1516 is designed to fit the Weaver style rail (Picatinny rail) and retains a 2” forward extension.
The CCOP is another one-piece cantilever mount scope retention system. However, this mount is a 30mm ring mount designed for military/police optic applications.
Not to say you can't have this mount, but it is set up for a bit more complicated optics. As such, this high-end mount is often more expensive than other AR-15 glass.
This mount is made from hardened T-6 aircraft grade aluminum and is an enhanced one-piece mount. This mount will fit any Picatinny rail.
The mount has high-quality anodization and a matte black finish. It includes Torx screws with a Torx driver included in the package.
5. Warne Scope Mount
From my experience with the evaluation and testing of firearms, sights, and ammunition, my "go to" mount about 80% of the time is a Warne Skeletonize 30mm or similar mount.
Warne is an early designer of the cantilever style scope mounting system. These are great systems for a rail mounted riflescope. These fit the receivers of both AR's as well as all chassis rifles.
Built of aircraft grade aluminum and using Torx style bolts, the bases are solid as a rock. This quality mount will not fail, as some lighter materials have been known to do over time.
I rate this mount five out of five stars in my own personal rating system here at Ballistics Research & Development TM.
6. Trijicon AC22033 30 mm Scope Mount
Here, we are moving deeper into the professional element when it comes to field gunning equipment. For more than 25 years, Trijicon has supplied the U.S. military with sights and mounts for their M-4 platform weapons and their 50 cal BMG.
The Trijicon Quick Release Scope mount fits 1-4X24, 2.5-10X56, or 5-20X50 AccuPoint optical systems.
Designed as a quick release one-piece mount, the design is simple but very effective. This scope mount can be depended on, to perform in battle conditions or even the gun combat target competitions.
When used in the field for hunting big game, the hunter can depend on this mount. Gunning swamps at night for wild pigs or busting backwaters for gators, this unit will do the deed every time.
The lock system features their patented BLAC lever system that requires no manual adjustments when obtaining a rock-solid alignment.
The scope ring can be moved and remounted in four different positions along the base system. This allows some added flexibility to the base design's already wonderful spacing system.
In effect, this is one of the best base systems available today. If you want quality, go with Trijicon every time. Needless to say, I am always impressed with their sights and lock down equipment.
I have used their products while shooting competitively at long-range events. I have also participated in classic press designed coyote hunts with the same equipment. Never, and I mean never, have I had any part or unit to fail me in the field. Some of this hunting was difficult in deadly nasty weather.
7. Trijicon MRO (Miniature Rifle Optic) Mount
Coming down in price but not in quality at all, the Trijicon MRO (Miniature Rifle) Optic Mount is designed for all rail-type mounting (AR-15). This is a great sight base system for hunting and even light competition shooting events.
This mount requires you to use your own rings; however, the base system is intact. This mount is a low profile and is mil-spec/drop tested. This sturdy mount is constructed from 7075-T6 aluminum. The unit passes all mil-spec testing and meets all their requirements.
At a full witness means that the sight is mounted at the exact height of the M-4 front sight. When using the red dot sights, the dot will appear precisely at the top of the towner front sight blade or notch.
These folks don't mess around. They built their mounts and bases to precision for fighting rifles or target events systems.
The distance from the top of the rail to the optical axis point is 1.53 inches.
8. AccuPoint Quick Release Flattop
This rail mounted one-piece design is a match for the AccuPoint red dot optical system for combat or civilian use. The materials are of high quality. The mounts stay where you want them even when under massive field stress.
This 30mm ring mount is used for weapons systems in the military class. Big 30mm tubes mean heavy, tough sighting adjustments with real steel holding the system together.
The mount makes use of the TRI 25 release system for the rail. This system will precisely re-zero after removal.
9. Mizugiwa Cantilever Flat Top Mount
This Mizugiwa 1-Inch Cantilever Flat Top Mount is not mil-spec and should only be considered for light duty use. It would be suited for plinking on Sunday afternoons or general small game hunting when you don't have to haul the weapons system any great distances.
This is a markdown item, but in some cases, it will work out just fine. Just understand what you are buying from the get-go.
I have listed this mount because not everyone needs a military class scope mounting system. When shooting in the back yard with everything from air rifles to 22 LR (and yes, those are built on AR platforms), this mount will do the deed for the shooter.
If you start moving up in task-related shooting situations, I would not depend on this much lower priced system. Nothing wrong here, mates, this is just what this situation boils down to.
Since this unit is in a lower price range, it has less material in the finished product. Screws, for example, tend to require great care when tightening down the bases. The alignment is a bit off and requires some extra adjusting. However, for the most part, this base system is a true Picatinny/Weaver style system and will accommodate extra accessories if needed on the receiver top.
This is a milled assembly and as such will hold up under normal use.
10. UTG ACCU-SYNC
The UTG Accu-Sync 1" mount is an integral Picatinny rail mount set up for one-inch scope tubes. It is a good match for the basic hunting scope using this tube size.
The mount is as indicated features one-piece construction and allows flexible movement of the optical system forward and backward. This mount can be flipped for an increase in eye relief as needed for small people or young shooters.
This CNC machined precision piece uses aircraft aluminum and is finished in matte black anodizing,
This good-looking mount has a very modest price. Even Torx screws have been installed on this mount. Those are often reserved for military applications instead of general-purpose mounts.
This mount is similar to the one I often use when reviewing rifles in the editorial test room when I require some quick glass for the short term. It is interesting to note that many of these budget mounts have given me great service for better than 20 years. The hard part is they are often removed several times a year to work in different test situations. Go figure?
Without question, the use of the one piece mount is an advantage but will involve some extra carry weight. This mount cuts down the chance of one full section vibrating loose due to recoil or other factors. The system is flexible, clean mounting and very strong. It would be smart to consider this mount if you're buying an AR-15 scope mount in the near future.