Nick Chen runs the Daniel Defense DD5 V5 Rifle out to 1000 yards in this gun review. Let us see how the DD5 V5 did?
U.S.A. -(AmmoLand.com)- Daniel Defense has led the industry with its quality AR-15s. Their rifles are issued to US Military and are known the world over. Last year they increased their DD5 series line up with three new offerings. The V3, V4, and V5. We got a chance to take a look at the Daniel Defense DD5 V5. It is a semi-automatic 20” bbl AR-10 chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor or .260 Remington. Daniel Defense sent us their 6.5 Creedmoor Mil-Spec+ version.
Daniel Defense DD5 V5 Rifle – Built Right From The Ground Up
The DD5 V5 rifle is Daniel Defense’s long-range precision gas gun. It is based on its DD5 AR-10 rifle platform so it takes AR-10 magazines. It comes bundled with a 20-round Magpul PMAG. The V5 has all the engineering attributes of the Daniel Defense DD5 series.
The upper and lower receivers are CNC milled out of 7075-T6 aluminum. The lower receiver has completely ambidextrous controls. Often when a manufacturer claims their rifle has ambidextrous controls they often do not have ambidextrous bolt catches. Typically they simply have an Ambi safety, Ambi mag release, and a bolt release on the right side but no Ambi bolt catch. Not the case with the DD5 V5.
The bolt catch is mirrored on the right-hand side. So for a right-handed shooter, all you need to do is extend your trigger finger forward and up, just above the mag release. You can press the bottom of the bolt catch to lock the bolt back as you pull the charging handle.
This helps when clearing malfunctions like double feeds while still maintaining your shooting hand on fire control. Daniel Defense has an integrated flared magazine well to act as a funnel to aid in faster reloads.
Their signature DD5 pistol grip provides an ergonomic wrist angle and non-slip grip for comfort and control in all conditions Just behind the lower receiver, the receiver end plate has an integrated QD point for attaching slings. The Daniel Defense adjustable carbine stock also has ambidextrous QD points near the rear of the stock.
Inside the lower receiver is a standard mil-spec trigger.
The free-floating handguard utilizes a 4-bolt interface to attach the handguard directly to the upper receiver. According to FD Defense, the 4-bolt interface is the “strongest most rigid interface in the industry”. The 4-bolt connection system eliminates the need for a barrel nut and ensures greater accuracy. The handguard on the DD5 V5 has 7 MLOK slots along each of the cardinal directions: three, six, and nine o’clock with a Picatinny rail along the top.
At the end of the 20” 1:8 twist cold hammer-forged barrel is their Superior Suppression muzzle device designed to offer muzzle flash signature reduction and reduced muzzle rise. And at the opposite end of the upper receiver is Daniel Defense’s GRIP-N-RIP ambidextrous charging handle. The GRIP-N-RIP Charging Handle is engineered for suppressed fire, with anti-gas features that redirect gas flow upward and away from the face and away from the operator.
Upon closer inspection of the GRIP-N-RIP charging handle it looks like there is a bleed off vent on the right-hand side just forward of the right-hand side handle. At the top of the charging handle is a raised semi-circular protrusion that seems like it would redirect any remaining gas upwards.
Just behind the muzzle device and under the front of the handguard is the DD5 adjustable gas block. The gas block has a two-position selector for shooting unsuppressed and suppressed.
The bolt carrier group is Superfinished and DLC-coated. The super finish is a long tumbling process that makes the surface very smooth and slick. Daniel Defense then coats the BCG in a diamond-like carbon coating. This makes the BCG super easy to clean simply by wiping it down with a cloth. On top of that, the slickness of the coating and super finish means you do not need
a lot of oil to keep it running. There is a tungsten buffer weight into the rear of the BCG this is for optimized cycling and improved recoil impulse.
The bolt itself has enhanced extractor geometry and dual ejectors for reliable cycling. According to Daniel Defense, the bolt used in the DD5 rifles is made of a custom stainless steel. The bolt material improves the life of the bolt. They tested it across all calibers and it exceeded 10,000 rounds.
Shooting The DD5 V5 Rifle
The DD5 V5 worked as advertised as long as it is set up properly. When I first test-fired this DD5 V5 I had failures to eject while shooting unsuppressed. I put a SilencerCo Omega 36M onto the DD5 V5 and it ran like a champ. Only later did I realize that this demo gun had been shot by someone else before me and left the gas block on the suppressed setting. In fact, it was stuck on the suppressed setting. But a quick call to Daniel Defense tech support and I was able to fix the problem. The previous reviewer shot this DD5 V5 exclusively suppressed. While there was a little bit of carbon build up on the gas block selector switch, it was very easy to fix the problem.
On the opposite side of the selector switch is an open channel. This channel houses the detent pin and spring for the selector switch. A couple of squirts of weapon-grade solvent and it freed up the selector switch. Now the gun was working as it should and properly ejecting spent casings. I did change the Superior Suppression muzzle device for my VG6 Precision Lambda PRS65 muzzle brake and it cut down the recoil significantly. Suppressing the V5 with the Omega 36M also helped reduce the recoil and made shooting the V5 much more pleasant. As mentioned earlier, the DD5 V5 comes with a mil-spec trigger and a Daniel Defense adjustable carbine stock. Not my first choice for a long-range precision gun but these were chosen for two reasons. First it keeps the cost down. Secondly, the end-user can choose what triggers he or she prefers. Whether it is a two-stage or single-stage trigger, you can install whatever trigger you like. Why spend extra money on a factory-installed precision trigger that you might not like? I tried the mil-spec trigger and it was not great but useable.
However, I swapped it out for a Geissele SD-E two-stage trigger and that made the gun feel a lot better when I broke off my shots. I pulled the carbine stock off and used an LMT DMR buttstock. It is designed for mounting to a carbine buffer tube so it was easy and effortless to install on the factory DD5 buffer tube. Changing the stock and trigger makes the DD5 V5 feel like a proper precision gas gun.
For $2,499 the Daniel Defense DD5 V5 Rifle is not cheap. However, it is a quality built rifle with a company that stands behind it. I cannot express enough how wonderful it was to shoot the V5 suppressed. With the gas block selector set to the suppressed setting, the V5 was perfection. It is as if everything was right with the world. If you want an out of the box semi-automatic rifle that can shoot out to 1000 yards then I would seriously consider the DD5 V5.
Nicholas “Nick” Chen
Nicholas Chen is a firearm aficionado. Growing up in California, He learned about firearms and hunted with his father growing up in Southern California. Once he moved out to Pennsylvania and then spent a few years in New York State, he learned to truly appreciate firearms and the second amendment. It was in New York State where he became a USPSA competitive shooter and learned about 3Gun. He is an avid fan of running and gunning.