Gun Report

Bushmaster Carbon 15 Model 97 .223

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We liked the ergonomics of this gun better than the OA 98, and the compensator did a great job of taming muzzle flip. But without reliability, we cannot recommend the model 97.

Bushmaster Carbon 15 Model 97 .223

Gun Details

Model Name
Model Number
Home Defense
Caliber Plus Cartridge
Weight Unloaded
Overall Length
Barrel Length
Sight Radius
Overall Height
Front Strap Height
Back Strap Height
Maximum Width
Grip Thickness Max
Grip Circumference Max
Frame Material
Barrel Material
Grip Material
Trigger Pull Single
Trigger Pull Double
Trigger Span Single
Trigger Span Double

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The rubber Hogue grip was a pleasant feature. The safety was shipped as left side operation only, but highly visible graphics told us the condition of our weapon from the right side as well. The chromed bolt and fluted barrel distinguish the model 97 from the Bushmaster 21 pistol. The optional scope mount slid on from the front and was anchored by a single Allen screw.
We found the supplied sights to be too vague for accuracy. We added a Picatinny rail from the Bushmaster catalog for $58 and were able to mount a scope without losing the sight picture. The Bushnell Holosight proved to be fast, but for longer-range shooting wed opt for a scope with magnification.

Read Gun Tests Rating and Recommendation