From a competitive standpoint the stock AR trigger basically sucks. The parts inside the spec AR are built with a hammer/trigger made from forgings or castings then are surface hardened and ground to a finish on the engagement surfaces.
If you don't modify them they'll last forever. If you tweak them you could have a problem pretty quickly. But, you're not happy with your trigger pull, how do you improve it safely? You could always have a stash of hammers and triggers and keep swapping them until you have a combination you like, but let's face it, that can get expensive and you probably won't be completely happy with the results. I won't even go into the complications of fitting in a tunable trigger or a two-stage trigger. If you're a very experienced gunsmith or have entirely too much time on your hands to get it right, the latter might work for you.
A simpler solution might be using American Trigger Corporation's new AR Gold trigger kit. It's a self-contained package that goes into or out of your AR in one piece. No tuning, fiddling, fitting. Drops right in.
The installation is straight forward. You take out the old trigger parts (including the safety) then insert the AR15 Gold and press the trigger pivot pin through. It will lock into place, no requirement for "C" clips (what we refer to around here as "Jesus" clips when they get away from us) to hold everything in place. Next, move the tail of the trigger down and reinsert the safety, then pivot the unit back level and insert the hammer pivot pin. Except for testing everything you're done.
So, what's the difference in the new trigger? It has a very clean, crisp release. No longer that long, gritty drag feel of the stock trigger setup. It's now take out the slack and squeeze, pop. The reset is even better. The reset, according to ATC, is modeled after the 1911 per feedback it was given. How much better is the trigger? According to their website Jerry Miculek tested it and decided to leave it in his gun to use it in the 3 Gun Nationals...and won. To change out something as important as a completely different trigger just before a match has to say something for this trigger assembly, right?
Compatibility is high if you stick to the Mil Spec rifles that use the .154 pins and does not have a 'sear block' that's found on some Colt's. It's been tested to work fine in the Sun Devil, CMMG, Stag and Bushmaster lowers. It didn't work too well with an old Essential Arms lower. Make sure any of your lowers do not use the 'big-pin' before attempting to install, this trigger kit requires the smaller pin.
So, who is this trigger kit for? It's probably not a good choice for those using it for defense or as your duty rifle. Those that are used to the long trigger pull could misfire with this new trigger assembly. However, hunters, competitive shooters and just your plain old plinkers will absolutely love the AR15 Gold.