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Wood forearm of a Browning BLR

Near the front of the forearm there is often a barrel-band to secure the forearm to the barrel.

A forearm (also known as handguard or forestock) is a section of a firearm between the receiver and the muzzle. It is used to hold the weapon steady. Forearms are usually made of wood or composite materials. Some forearms are equipped with heat shields to protect the user from heat radiating from the barrel when the weapon is fired. Forearms can serve as a mount for more attachments to the firearm, such as carrying handles, flashlights, bipods, M203 grenade launchers, and so on.

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