June 03, 2016
By James Tarr
I never share funny cat videos, and am not much of a "social" person, but I find myself on Facebook quite frequently — for business. Because of being asked to "Like" certain companies, I have become aware of some firearms-related businesses and products I might otherwise never have known about. The first was San Tan Tactical's product-improved AR receivers. The most recent are the match triggers from Elftmann Tactical.
Elftmann Tactical started out making a two-finger trigger similar to those found in paintball guns that allowed a close to full-auto rate of fire. I've heard that all the serious "tactical" types hated them€¦until they actually tried one. Since then Elftmann Tactical has begun making more traditionally-styled triggers, and I recently had a chance to try two of their triggers — a Match unit as well as a 3-Gun trigger.
Unusually, both the hammer and trigger rotate on aircraft needle bearings for one of the smoothest trigger pulls you're ever likely to find. The hammer spring is full power, not reduced like you'll find with some match triggers.
The hammer in the Match trigger is solid, whereas the one in the 3-Gun trigger is skeletonized for faster lock time. Other than that, the trigger units are internally identical, although the Match has a traditional curved bow and the 3-Gun sports a flat trigger.
Elftmann Tactical triggers are cassette-type triggers. These seem to be the most popular type of replacement triggers for AR-15s, as all you have to do is drop the whole unit into your receiver. The problem most cassette triggers have is walking receiver pins. Because the springs are contained within the housing, the hammer and trigger springs are not exerting any pressure on the receiver pins€¦and those pins can start to drift out of the receiver much more often than with a standard trigger group.
The traditional solution? Anti-walk pins, such as those made by KNS.
Elftmann's solution? Two screws in the body of the cassette. Once it is installed, just tighten those pins down and they bind against the aluminum floor of the lower receiver (check with Elftmann Tactical if you've got a polymer lower). Any pins can walk if you shoot enough, but after several hundred rounds, I hadn't noticed any drifting with the Elftmann properly tightened down.
The trigger bows themselves are skeletonized, and it took me a while to warm up to their looks. All of the triggers they make are available with either traditional curved or flat faces. I know a lot of people are getting to like the flat triggers, but I've just never liked the way they felt under my finger.
These triggers are user-adjustable for pull weight through the use of a single Allen-head screw at the rear of the unit. Unscrew it to lighten the trigger pull — unscrew it too much and the disconnector won't work.
Screw it in to make the pull heavier, and if you screw it in too far, the hammer won't fall. Which pretty much makes it idiot proof (at least until they begin breeding better idiots). This can all be done without removing the unit from the receiver if you decide you want to change the pull weight you initially dialed in.
Elftmann Tactical advertises that both their Match and 3-Gun triggers have pulls adjustable between 2.5 and 4 pounds. With the adjustment screw on my Match trigger set in the middle of its travel the trigger gave me a clean, crisp 3-pound break.
These are single-stage triggers, with no take-up and as close to no overtravel as you can get. As much because of the reduced amount of trigger travel as the 3-pound pull weight, I was able to easily do .14 — .16-second splits between shots — and I do not have a fast trigger finger. That equates to 400 rpm for those of you looking for quick double-taps or simulated full-auto.
All of the Elftmann Tactical triggers are completely drop-safe, because of a stupidly simple ledge they machine into the bottom of the hammer that catches on the front of the trigger bar if the trigger is not pulled when the hammer falls. If 2.5 — 4 pounds seems a bit light to you, Elftmann also makes a Service Trigger with a pull weight adjustable from 4 — 7 pounds. Triggers start at a very competitive $259.