For those rocking a single PVS-14, a quality mount will make a world of difference. Noisefighters is really shaking up the game with their new AX14-PRO. This “featherweight” night vision monocular mount is made with modern materials to reduce weight, increase rigidity, and most importantly; features a proprietary rotating knuckle allowing for articulation and use in front of either the right or left eye. This ends up being much more functional than a standard Milspec J-Arm while coming in at a fraction of the weight.
One of the biggest issues I have had with standard Milspec J-Arms is how high they sit when stowed. Traditionally you have only had the option of keeping the night vision in front of your eye or flipping the whole mount up on top of your helmet which sits much higher than the top of your head. This makes driving very difficult for tall people like me since I have to adjust the seat way down, and then hunch over to keep the PVS14 from hitting the roof of the vehicle. Standard J-Arms can also cause my PVS14 to catch on doorframes as I walk between rooms if I don’t squat down, which is no good. Fixing all of these issues, the AX14-PRO incorporates an integrated knuckle that “allows the entire monocular to both swing away from the eye temporarily and, when not in use, tightly stow against the helmet, significantly lessening the chance for damage during movement under doorways or out of vehicles. This knuckle is supplemented with metal washers for smooth and consistent movements. To be clear, the articulating knuckle permits full range of motion and tight stowing on both the left and right side.” This allows users to just rotate the monocular up towards their eyebrows to clear their field of view without adding any height to their helmet setup.
The pivoting mechanism comes pre-tensioned from the factory at a good feeling resistance level. However, if hard use and lots of movement eventually decrease the resistance and cause the mount to flop around, a simple hex key could be used to tighten it right back up. While I have yet to use it to the point of working it loose, I have heard of other people having this issue with the earlier MK2 version. Noisefighters state that they utilize multiple “anti-rotation features” which prevent the monocular from vibrating loose. Either way, this is not a big deal and the resistance can be set to your desired level if the factory settings are not preferred.
Another neat feature of the AX14-PRO is a “rearward sweep of the inner arm” which helps in positioning the monocular closer to one’s eye if desired. Ultimately this gives more adjustability which is great, and I for one love to run my NV as far back as I can without hitting my eyebrow. One thing to be noted is that when pivoting between your left and right eye there may not be adequate clearance with your nose. I found I have to slightly pull my helmet forward to avoid hitting my nose with the eyepiece of my PVS14 as I swing it between both eyes.
Made from “cutting edge manufacturing and material technologies” utilizing Arkema® polymer, the AX14-PRO tips the scales at only 0.9 ounces which is more than 50% lighter than a Milspec J-arm. Noisefighters also state that their mount is significantly more rigid due to its design which I do find hard to believe based on material composition, but trying to flex around on the mount it doesn’t want to budge. The AX14-PRO seems solid and well thought out. The hardware used includes anodized aluminum and 316 stainless steel to thrive in the most corrosive of environments. It also features a tether attachment point for securing the mount and your NV.
Noisefighters has built a great reputation for customer service over the years and offers a “no-questions-asked, transferable lifetime warranty” with their AX14-PRO. Not only do they cover it if it breaks, but they offered to let anyone who purchased the MK2 AX14-Arm destroy it and receive the all-new AX14-ARM for free.
This mount utilizes a dovetail-type attachment point so it will not be compatible with bayonet-style mounts. The dovetail locks up rock solid with absolutely zero play in my Norotos dovetail socket.
Overall, this lightweight mount puts less strain on my neck and gives the huge advantage of articulation. Coming in with an MSRP of $175, this could be one of the best bangs for your buck in the night vision world where everything is known for being expensive. The Noisefighters AX14-PRO provides a lot of versatility for those running a single NV monocular.