Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

The Agile Sling

When it comes to slings I pretty much like the standard 1¼-inch cotton type carry sling. Cotton isn’t slick like nylon, so it grips better on your clothing when hanging. The sling can be used in a standard carry mode with the rifle over your shoulder; I like the rifle on the support shoulder muzzle down, what’s traditionally been called “African Carry” by the big game hunters. Normally I don’t like to have the rifle looped around my body, but there are times when it’s necessary to have your hands free.

The new Agile sling provides all the advantages of a simple sling, and with its quick release buckle it can safely be used as a tactical or body sling. Matt Weathers, a conservation officer, AR expert, and Shootrite instructor, is the father of the Agile sling. (Agile was the original name for the AR project.) The beauty of this sling is its simplicity, ruggedness, and versatility. Matt uses the original cotton mil-spec material and metal tri-glides for adjustment. A quick release buckle is sewn into the sling, which when mounted is positioned on the front end of the rifle. The Agile sling can be used in the simple carry mode, without extra material, buckles and adjusters getting in the way, or as a tactical sling, looped around the body.

For self-defense or law enforcement applications you may have to grab up the rifle quickly. An elastic band included with the sling allows you to secure the sling to the handguard so when you pick up your rifle the sling isn’t hanging down to get caught on doorknobs, car doors, or tree limbs. When the time is right you grab the sling and rip it free of the elastic band. The other side of the coin is when you have the carry the weapon for hours at a time, or one or both hands are needed for other tasks.

You can loop it over your neck for a quick hands-free mode in what I call a “scramble carry,” and with the sling adjusted to the proper length still deploy the rifle. It can be adjusted to wear around the body, over the neck and under the arm, but without the extra material associated with most tactical slings, which can hang up on things or get in the way when manipulating your weapon. The key is the quick release buckle. In a situation where you need to shed the weapon quickly, say for instance you need to switch shoulders due to an injury, the sling gets caught on something immobilizing you, or you find yourself in the water sinking and need to get rid of any extra weight, you grab the sling with your hand, slide it down until you feel the buckle, and unsnap it to get free of the rifle.

This isn’t a fancy sling, but it will do everything you need, especially for general-purpose use, which is the category most of us fall under. Your application may dictate using a more complicated sling, but for most of us, simple is good.

Matt can be contacted by email at combat_lab@yahoo.com


September 19, 2010 - Posted by | AR-15, Gear

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