Pat’s Product Reviews: MGI Hydra Modular Rifle

Very interesting:

The Hydra is a true modular rifle based on the ever popular AR-15, with a few new twists of its own. The Hydra can be set-up as your basic AR-15 style rifle – firing the .223/5.56mm round, and it comes with a free-floated barrel for added accuracy, as well as a quad-rail handguard and flat-top receiver for mounting your favorite optic, laser, red dot or regular sights. If that’s all the Hydra did, it would be a good rifle, it’s a big step above many of the economy AR-15s on the market, make no mistake about that. What we have in the MGI Hydra is a rifle/carbine that can easily and quickly change from one caliber to another – in about a minute and a half. Yes! You read that statement correctly – the Hydra can change from a plain ol’ .223/5/56mm to a good number of other calibers in less than two minutes, with no special tools.

I’d like one that can switch to 9mm and use GLOCK magazines.   That’d really make my day.

via Pat’s Product Reviews: MGI Hydra Modular Rifle –

6 thoughts on “Pat’s Product Reviews: MGI Hydra Modular Rifle

  1. I purchased one of these uppers in the spring of 2011. After waiting for several months, I started emailing and calling the company for details of my order. Nobody ever returned my calls or emails. Finally one day I reached one of MGI’s employees. He told me it was raining really hard in Maine that morning and that’s why the company was not returning calls. Total BS. Todd then told me he’d call me back when he tracked down my order.
    He never did call back.
    I did some research on the company and the owner who purports to be a former Special Forces guy. According to state records in North Carolina, Mack Gwinn had a state license pulled for mismanaging peoples money. He was some kind of money manager who went all Bernie Madoff on his clients. There are only 2 Mack Gwinns in the U.S. Father and son.
    After more phone calls to MGI, I finally got in touch with LeeAnn who purported to be a new employee just starting out there that week. I found that odd being that it was her voice on the companies vmail message that I had been listening to for months. LeeAnn told me that they had no stock of the item that I had ordered and apologized that the website did not reflect that the product was backordered (which it still is to this day). They were having a factory make the products and were shooting for the middle of July 2011. I asked if the money orders I had sent had been cashed. She admitted they had been cashed months prior even though they had no products to sell me. I let her know that this was basically wire fraud and that if I didn’t have my products soon, I’d be filing a legal complaint with the state of Maine. She told me she’d call Mack who was at the 140th NRA anniversary in Philly. He had one of the uppers with him and was try to sell more of these products. You know, the ones he doesn’t have. Mack Gwinn, the owner, told LeeAnn she could send the one he had with him once he got back in town. LeeAnn actually called me back like she promised. I was shocked. They actually returned the call as they promised. Lee Ann let me know that she was shipping the upper the following week and that was that. A couple of weeks later I received the upper, then a couple of weeks after, a barrel from MGI
    After installing the barrel into the upper receiver, I noticed that the barrel wobbled around alot. I’m betting had I fired it I probably would have been injured. Lee Ann told me it probably had “bad cams” and that I should ship it back. I shipped it back.
    It’s now been a couple of weeks. Lee Ann claims she’s been sitting in an office all by herself, nobody has been there in two weeks to do a thing. She has no idea when my upper will be repaired. She can’t even authorize a new upper being sent out. Oh yeah, one thing I forgot to mention, Lee Ann told me that the uppers scheduled for July 13 had come in. She implied that there were new upper receivers. Funny, Midwayusa STILL has them listed as backordered.

    I would avoid this company. They won’t even return email messages or vmail. Hell, they won’t even call you back when they claim they will. They used my money to run their operation for several months without even useful products to sell.

  2. FWIW, my MGI QCB upper has been through several range days, an Appleseed clinic, and an Awerbuck 3-day carbine course without any malfunctions, despite a more-or-less complete lack of cleaning.

  3. My MGI upper is still at the MGI because it can’t be fixed. I’m still waiting. I have been told 4 to 6 weeks. 8 weeks later I was told 4 weeks. Last week I was told this week. This week I was told by LeeAnn she has no idea when I’ll see my rifle again and that it couldn’t be fixed as the technician couldn’t actually figure out why the barrel was loose.
    They did update their website however. They now claim they won’t charge your card till they ship your product and admit they have no products in stock other than 1 adjustable gas tube. They’ve been making promises every month since this spring. Honesty isn’t MGI’s strong suit. I’m not sure how somebody would feel comfortable dropping $4000.00 + from a company that doesn’t honor warranty obligations.

    This is what I found out about the owner:
    MACK W. GWINN, III (Fayetteville) – By Consent, the Commission revoked Mr. Gwinn’s broker license effective December 1, 1999. In an audit of Mr. Gwinn’s trust account during 1999, the Commission found that Mr. Gwinn had failed to keep proper records of the funds he held for others and failed to maintain those funds in a trust account. The Commission further found that Mr. Gwinn had failed to account for and remit the funds of others in his possession.

  4. They tell some people that the cams can be adjusted to fit loose barrels. I asked about this and Lee Ann told me that was not the case. They just wanted me to send them back their demo model as they had none left. Here’s the info I found elsewhere. MGI has been anything but honest with me as they refuse to fix my rifle. I’ll have to wait for a new one. That was a couple of months ago:

    On the barrel lock up:
    The barrel extension flange is what the MGI upper locks on, and if it isn’t within a few thousands of .131″ (Rock Island Arsenal blueprints) locking issues may occur.
    I found that the barrels I installed to lock up tight, with the exception of a new 7.62×39 YHM barrel I purchased. The flange on it measured .127″.
    While this will not an issue on a standard barrel nut setup, it is too thin for the MGI, and the barrel will still be loose after installation. The barrel could literally be rocked back and forth, with an extension only .004″ out of tolerance.
    MGI can adjust the tension on the locking cams if desired, but an in-spec barrel extension will then be too thick, causing locking issues as well.

  5. I bought a hydra and AK kit in March. It never worked right. First the barrel was 308 rather than 311 so 7.62X39 bullets came out sideways when the thing occasionally could be made to feed. They replaced that after a long wait, but it still never worked with failure to feed every other shot. At their request I returned the rifle for repair, and didn’t hear from them again for months. I finally demanded a refund in September and am still waiting.

    Avoid MGI.

  6. I sure wish I had seen your report before ordering my Hydra from MGI MILITARY. On 10/31/2016 I purchased via CC on was charged immediately for it. As of this date 11/30/16 I have been given the run around by Mack as to delays by UPS or parts he does not return calls or reply to emails. Told item shipping label was printed over a week ago but UPS has not pick up. I believe he has no intention of sending item, UPS picks up shipping orders same day or next business day. What a nightmare

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