I’ve built quite a few rifles lately for myself or friends and have found myself wondering why every Armorers Wrench I’ve tried had been junk so I started looking around for the king of all armorers wrenches. With the popularity of building AR’s instead of buying an off the shelf model there are more and more manufacturers jumping in on the Armorer Tool market. Some are junk, some are okay but very few are really high quality products that have had some thought put into their construction and design. There were tons of junk but I finally saw a post on Facebook for the Gem State Armory – AR Armorers Wrench and realized my search had ended.
I decided to talk to Jeff, the owner of Gem State Armory, regarding their AR Armorers Wrench. He was super stoked to get the word about his new wrench out to you guys and a few weeks later one showed up in the mail. The first thing I did was get out a few other tools I had and compare them all and as always you can immediately tell a difference between the turds and the diamond.
The Gem State Armory AR Armorers Wrench designed to be an all around tool that can be used on multiple calibers and multiple types of barrel nuts using different adapters. Instead of just stamping out flimsy pieces Gem State Armory actually uses precision laser cutting to cut each piece out of 1/4″ thick Steel. Then all the pieces are mil-spec parkerized. The current production items will have laser engraving on them but the item I have does not.
As you can see in these pictures the adapters mount by sliding onto the 3 posts on each side of the wrench and held in place using a strong magnet. This was one of my only concerns I had prior to receiving the wrench. If they were going to mess this wrench up I could see this being one of the few areas that they could easily do it. I was very happy when I mounted the adapters on the wrench for the first time and there were as solid as a rock. Not to mention the magnet they use is extremely strong. Strong enough that you forget the adapters and the wrench are separate pieces.
The adapters are specifically barrel nut adapters. Each wrench comes with a standard 5.56 Barrel Nut Adapter, an adapter that works perfect with Aftermarket Freefloat Tube Barrel Nuts and an AR-10 Barrel Nut Adapter (not shown). This was the weakest aspect of a all of the wrenches I’ve used it the past. The wrench always wanted to slip right off the barrel nut whenever you would put any force on it. Gem State Armory addressed this issue by using the same precision laser to cut out the adapters too. The precision fit was what you would expect to see on a high end rifle. I was able to easily apply all the force I needed to not only remove the barrel nut but also get the correct alignment when re-installing it. The A1/A2 flash hider wrenches are also built into this end of the wrench and work very well as expected.
On the other end of the tool is the Castle Nut Wrench. The Castle Nut is what locks up the end plate and buffer tube to the lower receiver. If you look back through some of my old pics you’ll see that I was always jacking up my the Castle Nut on my rifles because the other tools I was using had small little teeth that would slip out of the notches and scrape up the nut itself or the buffer tube. Using the AR Armorers wrench from Gem State Armory was the first time I’ve not had issues with that. Because they took care to get the dimension correct, it works perfect.
I really took my time with this review. I wanted to try to break the wrench or beat it up somehow but its very apparent that isn’t going to happen anytime soon. This thing is built like a rock! This was one of those items that I was very happy to have had the opportunity to review. There are very few items that I believe belong in any Armorers setup, one is my JKL Mobile Gun Vise, two is my MultiTasker Tools Series 2x and now the Gem State Armory AR Armorers Wrench is on this short list as well. I do recommend getting a pair of gloves or wrapping it with some cord. There are no sharp edges but with any tool like this its not exactly for soft hands.
Because these are 100% AMERICAN MADE and such high quality, you might be expecting these to cost an arm and a leg but fear not! If you are interested in purchasing one for yourself, they can be found for just $38 at GemStateArmory.com with FREE SHIPPING.