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Q Honey Badger 300 Blackout Review

Q Honey Badger standing

Some guns come with a ton of hype, and there may not be one more hyped in recent history than the Q Honey Badger. There’s a lot of confusion about this gun, and a lot of companies trying to copy it. So, is there anything special about the Q Honey Badger?

Honey Badger Origins

The Honey Badger got its start back in 2010 while Kevin Brittingham and his team were at Advanced Armament Corp (AAC). While working with US special forces on many projects; one was seeking a replacement for the MP5SD. The goal was to have one weapon that could be as quiet as the MP5SD, and still great for close quarters. Additionally, the same system needed to be used at longer ranges and lethal at distances similar to the M4. The MP5SD and its 9mm round are no longer effective past 100 meters. To further the wish list, special forces also wanted the gun to have the familiarity of use from the M4 with the compactness of the MP5.

The first thing they did was take a look at the cartridge. There is not a single round that can accomplish both of the required tasks. This lead AAC to give birth to the 300 Blackout. With 300 Blackout you can run a 30-caliber bullet through an M4 platform. The only change to the rifle is the barrel. It uses the same bolt and magazines as the M4. Along with that, the magazines maintain their 30-round capacity. Most importantly, 300 Blackout comes in two varieties subsonic and supersonic. Subsonic rounds which are heavier and work great for close quarters combat have the added benefit of being extremely quiet with the use of a suppressor. Supersonic rounds which are effective to much greater distances than their subsonic counterparts.

Now that there was a cartridge that could hit the wish list, Birmingham and team at AAC could develop the rifle. They came up with what is basically an M4 with a very short barrel, a suppressor inside the handguard, and a proprietary buffer tube and collapsible stock that was very reminiscent of the MP5.

Q Honey Badger Gets New Life

During this time Brittingham sold AAC to Remington who decided not to bring the Honey Badger to market. He and Remington parted ways and Birmingham moved on to SIG as president of the SIG Silencer division. During his tenure at SIG, the MCX launched, and there were many similarities to the Honey Badger. Many thought that this was as close to the Honey Badger as the civilian market would get. Then after completing his time at SIG, Brittingham started his own company, just one letter, Q, and answered the prayers of gun nerds everywhere. He brought an improved version of the elusive Honey Badger to the consumer market.

One of the most amazing things you immediately notice when you pick up the Honeybadger is the weight. This thing is insanely light; everything that Q builds is light, whether it’s a silencer, a muzzle brake, or a gun. If it says Q on the side it will be light. They cut all the pork out, they meticulously go through every single aspect and part and use the lightest materials possible, as long as they still function. The SBR version of the Honey Badger weighs in at only 4 pounds 8 ounces.

There’s a very distinctive look to the Honey Badger, and that comes from the clear anodizing on the 7075-aluminum giving it that honey-like color. The handguard is clear anodized 6061 aluminum giving it a grey color. Anodizing is a very tough scratch-resistant coating for aluminum, and not only do I think it looks amazing I find it fascinating that there is no paint on the Honey Badger.

Shooting the Honey Badger

The key to the compact size of the Honey Badger is from the stock assembly, which is much shorter than a traditional AR buffer tube. This causes some changes internally and externally. First, the stock moves on two rails, deployed by pressing a button. It only has 2 positions; all the way in and all the way out, but I will say that it is comfortable for me and the vast majority of people who shot the badger.

So how does it suppress? … It’s a gun made by a suppressor company, how do you think it suppresses? This thing is amazingly suppressed. It runs flawlessly, it’s astonishingly quiet, and not sure if it’s intentional, but the proprietary buffer system in the Honey Badger is very quiet, much quieter than a standard AR. You don’t get any of that “spring” sound you’d get from a traditional AR.

One thing that is hard to convey is the feeling a gun gives you. The Honey Badger just feels good and I think a lot of that great feeling comes from the weight. This thing is just so light, and so well balanced, even with a suppressor.

The fact that it functions so well, is so accurate, and all the parts come together. This gives you a rifle and a feeling that is so much greater than just the combination of its parts. You can move with the gun easily. Due to the weight, it points and shoots so naturally, you almost don’t even need to think about it. I will say this is easily the best 300 Blackout rifle ever conceived. It should be since it was developed by the team that developed the round.

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