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9mm AR-15 carbines are pretty popular right now. It’s easier to control a 9mm rifle than a 5.56mm rifle. And works well enough for most typical applications.
Obviously, 9mm isn’t as ballistically efficient as 5.56mm. But it’s cheaper. So you can train more with it. Or just shoot more, in general, because shooting is fun.
But, regardless of what you use your 9mm carbine for, it’s important to have the right parts, especially when it comes to your bolt and barrel, because these are pretty much the heart of your rifle.
Recently, the market has gotten a bit flooded with 9mm bolt carrier groups. So we sorted out all the best 9mm bolt carrier groups for you. That way you can make an informed choice. And get a 9mm carbine that does everything you need.
SPOILER—once the sorting was finished, the Faxon Firearms AR-15 9mm Bolt Carrier Group was at the top of the heap. It’s an excellent bolt carrier group that has quite a few creature comforts. And it’s remarkably affordable.
Want to see all the other options? Looking for something more specific? Keep reading. We’ve got all the best 9mm bolt carrier groups ready for inspection.
Top 9mm Bolt Carrier Groups on the Market Today
The Best 9mm Bolt Carrier Groups Reviews: Pistol Caliber Rifles
The overall best 9mm bolt carrier group is up for review first. The other best 9mm bolt carrier groups will be presented in order of price.
The most affordable, but potentially the most bare bones, 9mm bolt carrier groups are first in line.
The 9mm bolt carrier groups with the most creature comforts, with absolutely no regard for cost, are near the end.
Read the reviews wisely.
1. Faxon Firearms AR-15 9mm Bolt Carrier Group - Overall Best 9mm Bolt Carrier Group
I would be comfortable simply recommending the Faxon Firearms AR-15 9mm Bolt Carrier Group and calling it a day. It’s that good. And the price is excellent.
This is the bolt carrier group that I use in my 9mm carbine because it’s got a few key features.
First, it’s compatible with standard AR-15 upper receivers. And it has a notch for the ejection port door. So your dust cover works exactly the same as it would on a 5.56mm rifle.
Additionally, it has a last round bolt hold open. That way your bolt locks back when the magazine is empty (the way it should). This just makes your reloads faster and easier.
Then, it’s compatible with both Glock and Colt magazines. I prefer Colt magazines for 9mm carbines, because they tend to be more reliable, and the magazine release is the same as a 5.56mm AR-15.
But, if you prefer Glock magazines, this bolt carrier group is cool with that.
Lastly, the black nitride finish is outstanding. There are a lot of companies that offer black nitride bolt carrier groups. But the Faxon Firearms finish is one of the best. It’s super smooth, looks great, and resists wear really well.
It’s hard to find much to complain about. But the charging handle lug is bolted to the bolt carrier the same way that a traditional gas key would be attached. It might be more durable if the charging handle lug was machined directly into the bolt carrier body.
But it’s not a big deal at all. This bolt carrier group is far and away the best option if you have a limited budget, but don’t want to compromise on features or functionality.
2. R&D Precision 9mm Complete BCG - Versatile 9mm Bolt Carrier Group
The R&D Precision 9mm Complete BCG is an excellent bolt carrier group that you can use with just about any lower receiver out there.
Real quick stuff about the standard features:
In theory, this bolt carrier group is compatible with standard AR-15 upper receivers.
However, I recommend using a dedicated 9mm upper receiver. The ejector on this bolt carrier group doesn’t seem like it has the right angle to ensure reliable ejection through a standard AR-15 ejection port.
On the bright side, it has an ejection port cover notch. So your dust cover will operate normally with this bolt carrier group.
Lastly, it’s finished in black nitride. The finish is thick and durable.
But it’s got more of a matte look, and feels fairly similar to a phosphate finish. It might not deliver as much lubricity as a smoother nitride finish.
Here’s the real kicker, though: this bolt carrier group is compatible with Glock, Colt SMG, and MP5 magazines. There are very few 9mm bolt carrier groups with that kind of magazine compatibility.
It’s the broadest magazine compatibility you can find. So use (almost) any magazines you want.
As if that weren’t enough, this R&D Precision bolt carrier group is also incredibly affordable. Between the price and the magazine compatibility, you can easily build your 9mm carbine for the lowest possible price.
3. Stern Defense, LLC. M16 9MM Bolt - Budget 9mm Bolt Carrier Group
The Stern Defense, LLC. M16 9MM Bolt is pretty much the most affordable 9mm bolt carrier group that you can get without any nonsense. Usually, 9mm bolt carrier groups in this price range have some sort of functional limitation. But not this one.
Now, the finish is a standard phosphate coating. It’s durable. And it works just fine. But there’s nothing special about it. It’s just a mil-spec finish.
However, this bolt carrier group is compatible with Glock and Colt SMG magazines. That way you can use whatever mag fits your budget or existing magazine stockpile.
Additionally, this bolt carrier group is compatible with popular competition components like single stage triggers and the JP Enterprises silent capture spring. That way you can really tune your 9mm carbine.
This bolt carrier group is also compatible with the Law Tactical folding stock adapter, which is nice for storage and staging.
Lastly, this bolt carrier group is compatible with standard AR-15 upper receivers and ejection port covers. That way you get standard AR-15 operation from both your upper and lower receiver, if you want.
On top of all that, this Stern Defense bolt carrier group is one of the most affordable on the market, period. If you want a fully functional 9mm bolt carrier group for the lowest possible price, without any silly hiccups, this is the bolt carrier group for you.
4. ODIN Works 9mm Black Nitride Bolt Carrier Group - Value 9mm Bolt Carrier Group
ODIN Works isn’t known for producing budget parts. But the ODIN Works 9mm Black Nitride Bolt Carrier Group is surprisingly affordable. And it’s just as good as any other part you’d get from ODIN Works.
This is a completely functional 9mm bolt carrier group.
It’s got an ejection port cover notch. That way your ejection port cover functions as intended. The extractor is located at the 2 o’clock position (or the 11 o’clock position, depending on which direction you’re looking). That way this bolt carrier group works with standard AR-15 upper receivers.
This bolt carrier group is also compatible with Glock and Colt SMG magazines. That way you can use the magazines that work best for your budget and shooting lifestyle.
Lastly, this ODIN Works bolt carrier group is also compatible with specialty components like the JP Enterprises silent capture spring and other upgraded buffer systems.
And the entire thing is finished with black nitride. So you get a really high performance bolt carrier group at a better price than most comparable bolt carrier groups.
5. Rainier Arms 9mm Precision Match Grade Bolt Carrier Group - Match Grade 9mm Bolt Carrier Group
The Rainier Arms 9mm Precision Match Grade Bolt Carrier Group is incredibly well built. And it has a few extra touches that make it an excellent option for both competition and tactical shooting.
On the surface, this is simply a solid bolt carrier group that’s compatible with Glock and Colt SMG magazines.
It’s compatible with standard AR-15 upper receivers. And it has an ejection port cover notch. That way your upper receiver works exactly the same as your 5.56mm carbine.
And this model is finished with a black nitride coating. That way your bolt runs smoothly with minimal lubrication.
However, you’ll notice that this bolt carrier has contoured cuts. They look cool. But the real benefit is that the contouring of the bolt carrier body creates more space between the bolt body and your upper receiver.
That way there’s less friction in your upper receiver, which means smoother operation, less heat, and more reliability. And the contouring cuts make larger debris channels. That way hardened carbon and other debris are less likely to cause a malfunction.
If you’re a competition or tactical shooter, you know that reliability is everything.
So this Rainier Arms bolt carrier is a high performance and affordable option for anyone who needs a high-reliability and high-performance bolt carrier for their competition or tactical 9mm carbine.
Crushing it with Pistol Calibers
9mm AR-15 carbines are cool. But they can be a bit finicky. Shooting a pistol caliber cartridge out of a rifle platform takes a bit of tuning.
But you can make your 9mm carbine much more reliable, with far less tinkering, if you get the best 9mm bolt carrier group. That way things work as intended right out of the gate.
Still trying to decide? Just get the Faxon Firearms AR-15 9mm Bolt Carrier Group. It’s probably the best 9mm bolt carrier group for the money, period. This bolt carrier group will make your pistol caliber carbine work and work well.
Now that you know which ones will do the job, pickup one of these 9mm bolt carrier groups, finish your build. Then get out there and shoot.