Quantcast
  1. Sign up now and join over 35,000 northwest gun owners. It's quick, easy, and 100% free!

A Lefty's review of the IWI Tavor

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by BlackSheepJ, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. BlackSheepJ

    BlackSheepJ Central Washington Member

    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    13
    So I've had my left-handed Tavor for a few months now, and wanted to share my impressions of the rifle with y'all. It took me about 6 months to get a hold of a Lefty Tavor and set me back about $1900, so I hope I can help somebody else decide if the rifle is worth the effort to get.

    In the Box:
    The Tavor came packaged in a cardboard box with a cleaning kit, two QD attachments, a manual and a 30 round CAA magazine. The cleaning kit was a nice touch, though I've managed to already break the bore brush that came with and the little bottle leaks, badly. I was surprised by the stock magazine, since most of my experiences with CAA products haven't been positive, but I gotta say I'm a fan. It has fed reliably and seems to be as sturdy as my other polymer magazines. the QD points work, and the manual is pretty comprehensive.

    Ergonomics and Functionality:
    The Tavor balances very well, I'm pretty sure I could keep it shouldered longer than any other rifle I've held. It's a bit portly, coming in around 8 pounds bare, but since most of the weight sits at the rear of the weapon, I really don't notice. It also points quite well. I like the short overall length, especially since I probably will never be able to own an SBR, and fills that niche in my mind. The length of pull on the stock is comfortable enough for me, though I am 6', so considerably taller or shorter people might have a bit of a problem. I've tried the whole "six points of contact" shooting stance, and it does seem to work well enough, but feels unnatural to me and I have been defaulting to a more traditional stance as of late. I really would prefer a more closed trigger guard, but I doubt the long guard will cause problems in the long run. Recoil seems non-existent, with the inch thick rubber butt plate and the off hand sitting so close to the end of the barrel. I know that 5.56 rifles generally are all soft shooters, but the Tavor takes the cake in my mind.

    The internals of the Tavor remind me a lot of an AK, with the piston and bolt carrier set-up (pictured below), but it really is a completely different beast. Break down for the carrier is incredibly simple, just pull the recoil spring/guide rod away from the carrier, push out the cam pin and the bolt will fall out along with the firing pin. All you need is a loose round to completely field-strip the rifle, and unlike my AR-15, I haven't found any carbon build-up on any of the internals, with only a little finish wear.

    The trigger pack is also pretty simple to remove, push two pins and it'll fall right into your hand. However, be mindful of the bolt catch, as the only things holding it in place is one of the trigger pack's retaining pins, pressure from the trigger pack and small grooves at the top of the bolt hold. If it becomes dislodged during the removal of the trigger pack, it can be a bit of a headache putting it back. As for the iron sights, I love them and I wish every other rifle came with a set like them. They lay flat with the rail, and even come standard with a front tritium sight post. If you intend to swap out the stock muzzle device, the threading is the same as a 5.56 AR, but don't bother with crush washers (the barrel's shoulder isn't like an AR's), just use the locking nut that comes with the rifle.

    There is no getting around it, the trigger is heavy, heavier than any other trigger I've used. Most of my guns' trigger pulls are around 5-7 pounds, with my AR-15's being a 4 pound break. The Tavor's is around 11 pounds. I feel like I'm a slower shooter with the Tavor than my AR, and really have to pay attention to my fundamentals to hit what I'm aiming at. I've found lubing the trigger pack, as per the manual, helps a bit though. I have not personally tried it, but other Tavor owners have been removing one of the reset springs from the trigger pack, supposedly dropping the pull weight to 7 pounds. I've also heard that Timney and Geissele are working on after-market triggers, so owners will have some options soon. That being said, I haven't really been having trouble with the trigger. I honestly don't know if my trigger finger is getting stronger or if the trigger components are just breaking in, but I'm not having as much trouble with the trigger as I did when I just got the rifle. I won't be removing the reset spring in the trigger pack, and I'm on the fence about whether I will invest in an aftermarket pack, since in my mind reliability may be affected.

    Accuracy and Reliability:
    I've shot approximately 700 rounds through the Tavor using multiple magazines with zero issues. I've shot Wolf, PMC Bronze, Federal M855, Hornady TAP, American Eagle XM193, and PMC XTAC with no problems. I've also used the stock CAA magazine, Gen2 PMAGs, and Troy Battlemags without a hiccup. The 3 shot groupings pictured are with the Hornady 75 grain TAP ammo, with the best grouping being a little over one MOA. I shot these during my final sight in while leaning on the hood of my SUV, using a simple block under the hand guard and a Leupold AR MOD 1 1.5-4 at about 100 yards. I also think the high flyers are shooter's error, with how close the other rounds were to one another but I honestly can't say. So accuracy with good quality ammo seems excellent. My groupings with the 55 grain weight ammo was about 2.5 MOA on average, 2 MOA with XTAC 62 grain LAP while the M855 was a little worse than the XTAC. So at least my rifle likes the heavier weight projectiles.

    Ending Thoughts:
    I really like my Tavor, a lot. I wish I could have gotten a FDE, 18 inch barreled Tavor instead of the 16.5 black rifle that I have, but I honestly love having a true left-handed Bullpup, even if it isn't my favorite color. I have learned to live with the trigger. I'll admit it could be improved, but I will continue to exercise my trigger finger and see what happens. I'm also cautiously waiting for a Geissele two stage trigger pack. I like the compact package with a full length barrel, and have replaced my AR with the Tavor for HD situations. I also swapped out the A2 birdcage flash hider with a Troy Medieval, which works quite well with the rifle in my opinion. Hope you've enjoyed my first review on NWFA, and feel free to ask me any questions that I might have missed. Thanks for reading!

    BlackSheep

    tavor 1.JPG

    tavor 2.JPG

    tavor 3.JPG
     
    Burt Gummer, wou42, GOG and 9 others like this.
  2. gunjunky

    gunjunky Arlington, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    498
    Likes Received:
    91
    Nice rifle and review I am also a lefty and have been looking at one, thanks for taking the time.
     
  3. .45's and .38's

    .45's and .38's Happy Valley OR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,896
    Likes Received:
    88
    Great review for a lefty who has been considering the tavor
     
  4. dwaineshort

    dwaineshort Vancouver WA Active Member

    Messages:
    467
    Likes Received:
    193
    I also have one, but righty.
    For me a forward grip made the six points of contact fell way more nature.
     
  5. BlackSheepJ

    BlackSheepJ Central Washington Member

    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    13
    Getting the rail so I can add a vertical grip is on my list of things to do, mind letting me know what vertical grip you're using? I was thinking about trying the BCM Gunfighter grip, mostly because I have experience with it.
     
  6. dwaineshort

    dwaineshort Vancouver WA Active Member

    Messages:
    467
    Likes Received:
    193
    I used the rail from BullpupArmory.com .
    I didn't need to modify the grip to add it.
    The forward grip is the Magpul Moe.
    IMG_20130911_205049.jpg

    IMG_20130911_205049.jpg
     
  7. cookie

    cookie THE SOCIALIST STATE OF KALI - FORNIA Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,077
    Likes Received:
    533
    At first I thought a bull pup big deal but the more reviews there are the nicer rifle it seems to be . I want one.
     
  8. dwaineshort

    dwaineshort Vancouver WA Active Member

    Messages:
    467
    Likes Received:
    193
    I was in the same boat as you. I went to a gun show a few months ago. I played around with one, and was like I don't get the big deal. Then I got to shoot one. That same week I went, and bought one. One of the most fun rifle's I've ever shot.
     
  9. FreakSF

    FreakSF Boise Member

    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    15
    Thanks for the review! I'm a lefty and am very interested in the bullpup configuration. I have played with several variations (AUG, L85, PS90, FS2000) over the years. My biggest concern is that I want a bullpup that can easily be picked up and fired lefty or righty with little to no changes. I know "that's the FS2000", I've fired it and I'm not in love. I'm leaning towards the MSAR but I really want to want the TAVOR. Now if Magpul Would just get off there butts and make me my PDR all would be right in the world. Till then I remain torn between the MSAR and the TAVOR...

    Great gun and review! Thanks again.
     
  10. Questtt3

    Questtt3 Northeast New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Great review--thanks! As a fellow lefty, I especially appreciate your perspective!!

    Recognizing that the Tavor in "lefty" only comes in black . . . I understand that for those so motivated, one could also purchase it in FDE as a righty rifle and possibly convert it with a left hand bolt purchase. (Might also be easier/quicker way to get one as well as making 18" barrel available to those interested).

    Lt. Werner's Tavor site --discusses how to do this. (Not personally familiar with the site--just found this on a quick Google search; but also heard this ability to swap mentioned on some Youtube reviews--same search showed a random price of $109.99 for the bolt).

    So I guess if the flat dark earth color is worth $110 to someone, you could do this and end-up with an extra bolt (albeit for the "wrong" side ;o) ).

    I admit I am on the fence myself as to which color to go with as I have not been able to see one in person. As a predominantly "plastic" rifle, also wondering which color will hold up the best. Any thoughts?

    Thanks.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2013
  11. PX4WA

    PX4WA Tacoma, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    543
    Likes Received:
    158
    I removed the extra return spring.. unless you are in the desert, it's not needed... it was a later add on for reliability in a desert environment...

    it dropped mine to 9lbs... huge difference and I love it..
     
  12. GOG

    GOG State of Jefferson Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,135
    Likes Received:
    1,070
    Great review. Thank you. :thumbup:
     
  13. BlackSheepJ

    BlackSheepJ Central Washington Member

    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    13
    I actually do live in a pretty sandy area, but it is mostly because I'd rather not risk voiding the gun's warrantee by modifying the trigger. Besides, the trigger is useable for me, so I figured best not to mess with it unless I have to.

    And to Quest's question, I know I could have found a FDE Tavor, but the extra money for the lefty bolt along with shipping to IWI both ways for the conversion seemed like too much hassle to me. Also, every IDF Tar-21 and X95 I've seen in photos has been black, so I can only assume the black polymer shells hold up just fine, but I can't say for certain which one holds up better.
     
  14. PX4WA

    PX4WA Tacoma, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    543
    Likes Received:
    158
    it's a quick 5 minute job, no cutting and completely reversible.. as far as I've read, this is a documented option in a tavor manual somewhere (don't have a copy so can't verify)... and it doesn't make the weapon completely non-functional when it does not reset, you just have to push the trigger manually to reset it... (but that does pose a real problem in a real firefight)

    I doubt this will ever become a warranty voiding issue....

    that said, it's not a must do... the gun works bone stock...

    I just want to pass on to others that 2lbs makes a huge difference in this gun.. it went from great to awesome...

    I guess the biggest improvement is I could shoot it faster? but that is also overcome by practice and training if keeping the 11lb trigger...

    I'd actually recommend you try and take it off, run it in the sand a bit and see if the issue ever comes up? you could always put it back...

    just my 2 cents
     
  15. gunjunky

    gunjunky Arlington, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    498
    Likes Received:
    91
    Well I found a new/used Tavor for sale and made an offer, guess I will have it in hand soon. I appreciate a manufacturer that builds a true ambi gun and makes LH versions for sale in the market place. The only down side off the platform is the steep entry price point as that will make it more challenging to have a second rifle (the whole one is none thing).

    Now the hunt for an optic.
     
  16. PX4WA

    PX4WA Tacoma, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    543
    Likes Received:
    158
    It will be worth it....

    I have an acog on mine and works great for me...rapid acquisition and good field of view. Get the ta11 if you decide to try an acog..

    But 1x dots and eotech work great on it too
     
  17. gunjunky

    gunjunky Arlington, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    498
    Likes Received:
    91
    Thinking of the Aimpoint H1/T1 or Eotech XPS line.
     
  18. Netspirit

    Netspirit Bellevue, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    177
    I initially thought that "Lefty" in this thread's title referred to the political orientation. "A Liberal's review of IWI Tavor" - now that would be worth reading. )
     
  19. BlackSheepJ

    BlackSheepJ Central Washington Member

    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    13
    I'm sorry to disappoint you, but a gun-grabber might have an aneurism if they ever held a Tavor.
     
  20. PX4WA

    PX4WA Tacoma, WA Active Member

    Messages:
    543
    Likes Received:
    158
    Actually I suspect they may end up wanting to own one which is why they are so afraid of it and don't even touch one...

    Even piers Morgan cracked a smile when he fired an AR