In the market for an AR15? Maybe you want something a little more refined and different from the pack of typical forged AR15s? I got to take a good look at the Seekins NX3G and do some accuracy testing with it a few months back. Depending on your planned use, it may be a great choice for your next gun purchase.
A Known Pedigree:
Seekins Precision is located in Lewistown, Idaho and is a manufacturer of firearms, firearm parts, scope rings, and optic mounts. They have been known for some time now as being a shop that produces excellent products that are unique looking and high in quality. From their handguards and receiver sets for the AR15 and LR308 platforms, to their bolt action rifles, quality is something they take seriously.
The model I received for testing and evaluation is the NX3G. The rifle is purpose built for Three Gun competition shooting. With the skeletonized receiver set, their ATC multi-chambered muzzle device, and their 16” 416R stainless steel, the rifle was designed to be a soft recoiling, smooth shooting rifle for potential competition at a fairly reasonable price.
My overall first impressions were that the rifle balanced very well in my shoulder and that the receiver set had its own style. The cuts in the billet receivers were done with precision and aesthetically look amazing. Whether looking at their modern sporting rifles, or their Havak line of bolt-action rifles, style is not lacking with the firearms of Seekins Precision.
Getting out to the range, I mounted an ACME Machine 6-24x50 FFP optic with their 30mm extended mount. I have used this scope on many other test rifles, and the clarity of the glass is great. I tested 4 different loads out of the NX3G which included Winchester 55 grain FMJ, Barnes 62 grain TSX, IMI 77 grain OTM, and Barnes Precision Match 85 grain OTM. All accuracy testing was done off a bench using bags as a rest. I expected 1 MOA or better groups from the rifle, and I am happy to say that the rifle did not disappoint.
After getting on paper with the white-box Winchester loads, I was immediately surprised at the precision of the NX3G. Even though it was only 25 yards, the points of impact were essentially one ragged hole. Pushing out to 100 yards, even with cheap plinking ammo, the Seekins was able to shoot under 1.5 MOA. Their 5R, button-rifled 416R stainless steel barrel is of great quality. Putting up more groups with other ammo only tightened up even more.
Overall, the best two groups that were shot out of the NX3G were of a heavier variety using the 77 grain OTM loads from IMI and the 85 grain OTM loads from Barnes. I have yet to find a rifle that did not like shooting these two different loads if the rifle twist was of at least 1:8. The two loads basically did the same in performance and were able to group sub-MOA. The IMI was able to print at .75 MOA, while the Barnes performed at .76 MOA with both groups measuring at practically the same at .79”.
The trigger is not match-grade by any means, but it is smooth, predictable and has a good reset. Using a drop-in trigger with a lighter and smoother pull could potentially tighten up the groups even more, which would be my first upgrade if I were to use this rifle in a competition role. During my accuracy testing, the rifle exhibited no issues with feeding, extracting, or cycling. Between the ATC compensator and mid-length gas system, felt recoil was soft and cycling of the BCG was smooth as silk.
Running the Gun:
After I concluded with accuracy testing, I began to put the NX3G through its paces by doing some shooting drills. I switched out the ACME Machine 6-24x50 optic and bolted on a Trijicon Accupower 1-4x LPVO. This optic has proven time and again to be highly precise in adjustment while maintaining zero through any conditions I put it through, thanks to the Bobro Engineering QD mount. Drills consisted of
failure drills, multiple target engagement, and shooting unknown distances out to 300 yards.
The choice to go with a mid-length gas system was smart by Seekins Precision, and honestly it should be an industry standard with 16” barrels at this point. The mid-length gas system is as reliable as the carbine gas length, but with a properly sized gas port can ultimately help soften felt recoil. This comes in handy when firing faster or keeping on target at extended ranges. The ATC compensator in conjunction with the mid-length gas length double teams on recoil and provides a consistently flat shooting, and soft recoiling rifle that is a pleasure to shoot.
While running drills for the rest of the afternoon, the NX3G didn’t have so much as a hiccup in performance. The Winchester “White-Box” 55 grain FMJs, while not the cleanest, performed accurately and at extended ranges out to 300 yards, they were still plenty accurate. In fact, they were probably more accurate than me shooting off hand, or off a round bale with the Trijicon’s Accupower at 4x magnification. With a 50 yard zero, I was able to go from 0-200 yards with ease, and only gave a slight hold over for 300-yard targets. Typically, even out to 300 yards, the Winchester loads were keeping roughly 2.5 MOA groups.
The Seekins Precision NX3G is an excellent rifle. For its price point, it is accurate enough for a competition or hunting rifle for predator and varmints. I can not stress enough how smooth the rifle functioned and how little the felt recoil pushed the muzzle off target. It is a flat shooter and would servewell in a competition role, or a defensive carbine for that matter. I felt that the balance of the rifle was also very well done between the receivers and the handguard. When shouldered, the rifle felt like it belonged there. While I didn’t have to adjust the gas block, that feature is an excellent idea for competition shooters that want to dial in the perfect running gas pressure.
The style is also something to behold with the rifle. The billet receivers have a distinctive look between the angled cuts, and skeletonized features with the Seekins logo milled through the magazine well on the shooters right side of the weapon. The DNA extended-latch charging handle is sized perfectly for running an optic. The ambidextrous controls are another nice touch with the design of the rifle, with both an ambidextrous safety and ambidextrous bolt release. The 15” full-length handguard is of a quality design and feels solid when grabbed by the support hand. The ATC muzzle brake is effective and with the 16” barrel, it does not feel overly concussive like some other ported compensators.
The only item that I did take issue with was that the castle nut was not staked to the endplate on the receiver extension. While many people don’t feel that this is a necessity, I am a stickler for proper assembly procedures on the AR15. It is a simple procedure, takes no special machine, and provides insurance that the castle nut does not back off the end plate. For the MSRP of $1659, I don’t think it is too much to ask that a common procedure is done to an excellent rifle. A match grade trigger would also be a nice touch, but that is always something a shooter can upgrade due to personal preference.
Receivers: Skeletonized 7075-T6 Billet Aluminum with Ambidextrous Controls
Barrel: 16” 416R Stainless Steel, 5R Button Rifled with a 1:8 Twist, “Armor Blak” Coated
Chamber: .223 Wylde
Handguard: 15” NOXs in MLOK
Stock: Magpul ACS-L
Grip: Magpul MOE+
Charging Handle: Seekins DNA Non-Ambidextrous Extended Latch
Muzzle Device: ATC Muzzle Brake (4 Ports)
Weight: 7 lbs.
By the Numbers:
The Seekins NX3G is not a budget rifle by any means, and the MSRP of $1659 may be high to some. For the price though, you get a stylish billet AR15 that has an impressive barrel built for accuracy. The rifle is also feature packed with ambidextrous controls that set the rifle ahead of some of its competition. You do get a lot of rifle for the price.
The NX3G proved to be reliable with any ammunition that it was fed. Multiple brands of magazines were used between PMAG, MFT, and older standard USGI magazines. The rifle kept chugging along without issue, and remained to be a light recoiling, flat shooting rifle. It was boringly reliable. I would like to see the castle nut staked though to cover all your bases in terms of reliability.
Between the enhanced ambidextrous controls, the extended latch with the DNA charging handle, the Magpul ACS-L stock and MOE+ group, and the soft felt recoil, the NX3G was an absolute joy to shoot for the day. While 7 lbs. would not be considered a lightweight in my opinion, for billet receivers that is impressive while also looking amazing with the angled cuts and recesses of the billet aluminum.
The NX3G is a piece of art and will set you apart on the range filled with typical forged receiver AR15s. I can’t count the amount of times I whispered, “damn” to myself when handling the rifle. It is a head turning rifle and, even better, it performs as well as it looks.
Pure and simple, if you want a highly functional rifle and something that looks the part as well, Seekins Precision has a winner with the NX3G. Whether it would be used as a competition rifle or for varmint/predator hunting, this rifle talks the talk and walks the walk.
For more information on the Seekins Precision NX3G and their other modern sporting rifles, check out their website at: