At the Fall 2016 Big 3 Media Event, WPA (Wolf Performance Ammunition) reveled that they will be releasing the Taiwanese T91 upper receiver sometime later this year. The price will be $599 w/ BCG and charging handle included.
It seems like the whole piston AR craze have die down by a lot lately. Noted that there were all kind of issues surfaced with various new piston-driven AR-15 designs. Those ranging from bolt carrier tilting, bad accuracy, to piston component longevity issue. The Taiwanese military had solved all of those problems and they have a piston AR in service for almost 40 years.
Due to the US firearms laws, WPA T91 upper will be made from imported Taiwanese components and assembled in Tennessee. While the barrel is imported with finished bore and rifling on the inside but it’s un-contoured and unfinished on the outside. The finished T91 hammer-forged barrel is 16-inch long with a 1:7 twist rate, and its bore is Milspec chrome lined.
The top of the T91 handguard shows the two mounting holes for mounting a top rail or in the ROCA (Republic of China Army, aka the Taiwanese military) service, that usually for mounting the leaf sight for the 40mm under-barrel grenade launch. The T91’s gas-block and front sight unit is made from a big hunk of forged steel. The front sight could be remove from the gas-block by unpinning a pin or two.
On the underside of the T91 handguard, there isn’t much to see other than a series of rounded ribs on the griping area. The handguard cross-section resembles an enlarged rounded triangle and it felt very comfortable on my hand. The triangle shape reminded me of the original M16A1’s characteristic triangle handguard.
The WPA T91 upper firing in full-auto. It was very controllable partly due to its weight and partly because of its slower full-auto firing rate of roughly 650-700 round per-minutes (rpm), comparing to the 800-1000 rpm from a typical M4 carbine.
Big 3 Media’s web editor Jim Grant really like the WPA T91 upper. We borrowed this special digital muddy-girl printed Palmetto State Armory‘s AR-15 lower with a full-auto trigger for our testing. After couple of full-auto mag dumps, the T91 upper’s barrel was smoking but its large polymer handguard w/ heat shield was just barely warmed.