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Preview – POF P415 Carbine

Talkin’ ’Bout My Generation
POF’s Gen-4 Carbine is Accurate, Ergonomic and Runs Like a Sewing Machine

Photography by Jason Swarr

In RECOIL Issue 7, we got to shoot POF’s 7.62mm full-auto SBR and came away with a favorable impression of its quality and accuracy. When the founder and president of the company called us up and offered a sneak preview of the fourth-generation rifle that was due to launch at this year’s SHOT Show, we said, “What the hell? It’s about time we got to break something new.”

Popping the catches on the obligatory black plastic shipping case, the first thing that you notice on the new 5.56mm rifle is the hand-guard. It’s now an acceptable length for those of us who like to grind their teeth and make like a tank while we shoot. It’s easy enough to get fixated on one obvious feature, though. Doing so would be a mistake, as this carbine has enough well-thought-out elements to make your average OCD-afflicted individual take a couple of days off work to sit in a darkened room and make “ooh” and “ahh” noises while rocking gently back and forth.

POF-P415-DissasembledPOF-P415

Under the Hood
Starting at the business end, POF’s three-baffle brake is effective. And loud. Rather than time it by means of the usual crush washer, the factory employs a slim lock nut — when you think about it in the context of an AR, this makes perfect sense. Consider that the muzzle device is probably the last component to be installed whilst the upper is clamped in a vise. When using a crush washer, torque is transmitted via the (steel) barrel to the (aluminum) receiver by means of the 1⁄8-inch diameter (steel) pin in the barrel extension. Guess which one’s going to deform if you get enthusiastic with the wrench? Since you rely on the interface between barrel extension and receiver for accuracy when using any kind of optic, it pays to ensure there’s no slop in that connection.

POFs have a reputation for shooting small groups, and one of the reasons for that can be found in their gas system. It’s a short-stroke system, reminiscent of the FAL, but it omits the Belgian design’s one-piece, spring-loaded piston. Instead, it employs a lightweight operating rod and a separate, tiny piston — the net result of which is to minimize any external force on the barrel at the moment of firing. At the risk of this turning into one of those articles in which the writer has never met a gun he doesn’t like, let’s just say that it’s a contributing factor to POF rifles being some of the most accurate semiautos we’ve ever shot.

The gas plug will be instantly recognizable to anyone who’s picked up an FAL and offers settings for normal and suppressed use, and off. On a standard POF carbine, the plug is readily accessible; however, the downside to the longer hand-guard is that disassembly is more of a pain in the hoop. If you have more than three thumbs per hand, then you should consider the shorter version, as the tradeoff in terms of real estate may be worth the amount of frustration and swearing you’ll forgo when cleaning time rolls around.

For the rest of this article, subscribe here: RECOIL Issue 12

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