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Thread: Anyone shooting AR-15's? I want one but don't know which one...

  1. #1
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Default Anyone shooting AR-15's? I want one but don't know which one...

    Been wanting an assault rifle for a while. Guess the AR-15 will do, but open to any other suggestions. Problem is, I don't know much about them. I don't want super high end, but don't want junk either. Looking for a very reliable gun I can go out and shoot a few hundred rounds with for fun. Might double duty as a home defense gun so reliability is priority. No bench rest or specific target shooting. Heard of Bushmaster, DPMS, etc.. but not sure what is best. Sig, S&W, or SA would be of interest perhaps. Any advice on sights or tactical lights would be appreciated as well. 5.56 is the standard or do these guns come in other offerings? Thanks for any comment. Wife says thanks for helping me spend my money.



    -Dan

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    Member Trappnguns's Avatar
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    I've got three. One is a Carbon 15 Bushmaster pistol... Probably not what you are looking for.

    The other two I "built" myself. Rock river arms has an M4gery kit that is relatively cheap. All you need is very basic assembly skills and a lower receiver. Got the kit from RB Precision.

    The last one is a cheap Essential Arms lower (had to file the magwell to fit Pmags) DPMS lower parts kit, A2 buttstock assembly and a Rock River Arms CMP stainless A2 bull barrel upper. I got these parts from a bunch of different places...

    The advantage to the RRA kit is the National Match 2 stage trigger. The DPMS is ok, but I really like the RRA NM...

    I built both for less than $700 a few years back.

    If 'ol Ken (Wild Alaska) gets on here he will probably tell you they are all JUNK. The only jams I have ever had (I load my own) were in the pistol, and when I didn't dry the cases all of the way and ruined the primers...

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    Member markopolo50's Avatar
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    Dan, I've only have one so far. I built it myself using Delton lower and Delton rifle kit. I added a few extra's, 20" barrel, flattop for a scope, RRA two stage trigger and a couple other small extras. So far it works perfectand have shot only factory ammo. Bought a bunch of Federal in bulk and they aren't as accurate so far as the Fiocchi, but far less in price. Delton has a pretty user friendly web site. Good luck and they are fun to shoot.

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    Dan, Do NOT buy one, they are ugly, ugly, ugly, did I say UGLY. I'll disagree with your thinking, and advise you do lots of research, and buy exactly what you want the first time, it is so much cheaper than endless upgrading, and the five boxes of un-loved buttstocks, forends, springs, etc. O'Yes they are BUTT ugly, how do I know this, because all of mine are butt ugly. Most of mine are Rock River.

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    +1 on Delton. All milspec and you can mix and match parts when you order the kit...or...get the cheap one and upgrade as you want after you shoot it a bit.

    Carbon lowers are wonderful...check out Plum Crazy at London Bridge Guns in AZ.

  6. #6
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AGL4now View Post
    Most of mine are Rock River.





    Thanks for the input guys. Will look forward to future contributions here. Not dead set on an AR-15, just want a good assault rifle. Question is which one to buy. A loaded question perhaps. ha ha... So many choices. A double edged sword of sorts.




    -Dan

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    Dan,

    A few sites you may want to check out is ar15.com, m4carbine.net, and lightfighter.net. ar15.com is a decent place for beginners to find info, but you may have to filter through some of the BS. Good info to find deals and sales as well. m4carbine.net will have you spending top dollar to buy a rifle for some class or something...good info though. lightfighter.net is not a gun board, but it has gun people on it. Neither lightfighter, nor m4carbine is very forgiving to beginners who don't search first.

    I own a couple ARs, a BCM and a RRA. They are my toys...no real serious use other than practicing at times.

  8. #8
    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDC View Post

    I own a couple ARs, a BCM and a RRA...

    And...


    Perhaps tell me which guns you got and how you like them. That is the kind of info I am hoping for. I have never shot an assault rifle. Closest thing I shot was a mini-14 back when I was a prison guard. Translation, I got nearly no insights into these rifles.




    -Dan

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    These are good value, for a built ready to rock & roll rifle. You can spend $5,000.-- or $700.-- (What I would suggest if you are serious is start buying ammo, lots and lots of ammo). http://www.rockriverarms.com/index.c...ategory_id=461

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    your going to get a bunch of opinions with a question like that. So ill give you mine
    It depends on what your budget is, what kind of quality, and what features you want. ARs are like LEGOS. Building your own is easy but you will need a couple tools or know someone who has them, good places to start are http://www.bravocompanyusa.com/ , brownells.com , midwayusa.com, and many others. As far as pre built good brands i have experience with and have good reputations are JP enterprises, Larue Tactical, and Noveske. None of those would be considered budget ARs but all will be great quality. I have also heard good things about Colt and RRA, which are a little cheaper. I have not been impressed with bushmaster, DPMS, or any of the piston ARs. Just a couple of my opinions. Im sure there are lots of other quality manufactures that i don't have experience with. hope it helps

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    Member .338-06's Avatar
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    I'll offer a different suggestion. Saiga rifles or shotguns. These are, at their heart, AK-47s. Much more robust weapons than the ARs. Yes, you have to fuss with them to get that AK-47 look and it costs about $150 in parts, but they end up looking and handling much better. I have one in .308 & 12ga. It doesn't get much more fun than shooting an autoloading 12ga with a 20 round mag! The rifles are in 5.45x39mm, .223, 7.62x39 and .308. The shotguns are in .410(I'm not sure why), 20ga and 12ga. The price goes up and down seemingly on how hard it is importing them. Stupid government. I got into them cause they were cheaper than ARs, 'course I've got an AR build in my workroom right now.

    Saigas generally are not as accurate as ARs, but mine is certainly "minute of Moose" grouping 3"-5" at 100yds from a rest with Winchester 'white box' ammo.
    I may be slow, but I get where I'm going!

  12. #12
    Member TWB's Avatar
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    Ford. Dodge. Chevy.

    Unless your gonna turn this into a tactical shooting passion, any of the decent rifles off the shelf will do. Bushmaster, S&W, Ruger.... From the price perspective of 7-1000$....a lot of the internals are the same and you really can't go wrong. Or build one yourself, save some money, turn in a few extra trick parts for the same as a gun off the shelf and learn a few things along the way.

  13. #13
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    or buy 2 ak's and twice the ammo
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    You're going to get a lot of opinions here, and take them all with a grain of salt... even mine. You're asking a question like "what's the minimum caliber for XXX hunting. What I can give you is some purely anecdotal advice. Best bang for buck? build your own. There's a guy in the valley who sells stripped lower receivers for about $130 or so... look for his ad's on places like alaskaslist. Or, if you can shop at the BX on Elmendorf, they're $100 (the guy in the valley can etch a custom design on the side of the receiver I hear). From there, you can build whatever you want. Me personally, I have several in all shapes and sizes which I built from DPMS stripped lowers. If I have a 16" M4(gery), I don't really care about the trigger pull so much since it is mainly a sub-100 yds rifle... on the other hand, if I have a 24" SS heavy barrel, I go with the RRA 2-stage NM trigger... it's a long range rifle (300+).

    As far as reliability, I have 2 main areas of advice... #1, M-4 barrel extension and receiver grooves. (google it). Also, have a fair amount of barrel in front of your gas port. Dont (IMHO) get a 16" barrel with rifle length gas... go for at minimum a mid-length gas system, or better a carbine gas system. The shorter the gas system, the harsher the recoil/return to battery, but IMO and in my personal experience, more reliable.

    A company to look up is CMMG. They have quality parts and kits, as well as a pretty good FAQ on what you should choose for what application and why.



    Edit: just noticed your location, so the valley and Elmendorf are not an option... I'm sure there's a source in your area for stripped lowers

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    Member danattherock's Avatar
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    While I appreciate the fact that many are making their own, I am looking to buy a complete gun at this point. I do want a shorter and more compact AR-15 than most. Accuracy is not the top priority and I will not be putting a scope on this gun. Tactical light and laser, 30-50 yard gun, home protection, plinking at range, etc.. Looks like Rock River has lots to offer. Perhaps a better question at this point is are there any models to avoid. Bushmaster and DPMS perhaps? Sig and Armalite are pricey for my intended usage it seems. I had no idea there were so many AR's out there so my search has humbled me a bit in that regard. Although many look the same to me, seems the quality varies considerably. I am looking for a reliable gun without all the bells and whistles it seems. A shorter model, folding stock, with a few toys mounted on the rail. Thanks for any further comment.



    -Dan

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    Member marshall's Avatar
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    I have an American Spirit Arms AR. Fortunately for me they're only 45 minutes from my home.

    The really cool part is that you can walk in and pick what ever parts you do or do not want and only pay for what the finished product is. It beats buying a complete rifle then paying for changes down the road.

    The reviews are great and the quality and workmanship are first class.

    My first was a Sidecharger 308, I sold it for more than I bought it for when the current President took office. New builds at that time were taking up to six months so the price for current models went up. I had a cheaper 223 version built for plinking. Both rifles function perfectly and shoot very nice groups.

    http://www.americanspiritarms.com/index.php

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    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    Been wanting an assault rifle for a while. Guess the AR-15 will do,
    -Dan
    Unfortunately you won't find an "assault rifle" in the AR-15. You have to go to the M-16 which will cost around $8k and up and you can't use it for any kind of hunting. But it will be fun until you have to feed it.
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

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    Member tyrex13's Avatar
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    If you want to buy one and done, get a Colt 6920 or 6940 and you will have no regrets. That being said, BCM, RRA, Stag, Daniel Defense and are all really good complete rifles. There's probably nothing wrong with Bushmaster or DPMS, but I think you can get more for your money.

    If you are up for building one, Del-Ton is great as well. I have some Stag, RRA and Delton's if you want to take a peek. My current stable is a couple of Stag lefty's, a couple of Del-Ton M4gery's and a M&A Parts M16A4gery (not select fire). I also have a couple lowers. I tend to prefer Stag and RRA lowers to DPMS, Bushmaster and others. I think RRA makes the best lower parts kit (I've assembled only a dozen or so).

    ETA: after reading your post further down the thread I would look hard at the Colt 6940 and Stag Tactical. I would swap out the folding rear sight with a Larue rear.

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    Member GD Yankee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danattherock View Post
    While I appreciate the fact that many are making their own, I am looking to buy a complete gun at this point. I do want a shorter and more compact AR-15 than most. Accuracy is not the top priority and I will not be putting a scope on this gun. Tactical light and laser, 30-50 yard gun, home protection, plinking at range, etc.. Looks like Rock River has lots to offer. Perhaps a better question at this point is are there any models to avoid. Bushmaster and DPMS perhaps? Sig and Armalite are pricey for my intended usage it seems. I had no idea there were so many AR's out there so my search has humbled me a bit in that regard. Although many look the same to me, seems the quality varies considerably. I am looking for a reliable gun without all the bells and whistles it seems. A shorter model, folding stock, with a few toys mounted on the rail. Thanks for any further comment.



    -Dan
    Dan,

    Everyone is giving good advice. AR15s come in every flavor these days. Frankly, the only way to help narrow it down is to decide your price point and start shopping. There aren't too many bad choices, but like you've seen, some are more expensive than others (Sig, Armalite, etc.). If you want good value, I would look at Smith and Wesson's. They seem to be sold for a pretty good price, with lots of options available. I would go for a flat top, no need for the old military handle/rear sight. If you are looking to save a bit of money, don't worry about a multi-rail front handguard either, you'll be putting a scope or red-dot sight on the receiver rail anyway. You can always put a railed front handguard on it later by your self for pretty cheap (look at Magpul's options).

    Basically, decide what you want to spend. Decide what options you want, then comb the websites. Bravo Company, as previously mentioned is a great company for looking at options and accessories. It is all fun stuff! Good luck.

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    Moderator hunt_ak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lowrider View Post
    +1 on Delton. All milspec...
    Carbon lowers are wonderful...check out Plum Crazy at London Bridge Guns in AZ.
    Milspec in what sense? I love that word....milspec...

    What makes carbon lowers wonderful? The weight savings? Stripped aluminum lowers are pretty durn light already....

    Quote Originally Posted by FDC View Post
    Dan,

    A few sites you may want to check out is ar15.com, m4carbine.net, and lightfighter.net. ar15.com is a decent place for beginners to find info, but you may have to filter through some of the BS. Good info to find deals and sales as well. m4carbine.net will have you spending top dollar to buy a rifle for some class or something...good info though. lightfighter.net is not a gun board, but it has gun people on it. Neither lightfighter, nor m4carbine is very forgiving to beginners who don't search first.
    You'll definitely filter through BS on ARFCOM. Go to M4Carbine.net for about 2-3 months and read, read, read. Read the stickes, use the orange search button, etc. You will learn TONS about what makes an AR a real AR...

    Quote Originally Posted by Akheloce View Post
    There's a guy in the valley who sells stripped lower receivers for about $130 or so...
    As far as reliability, go for at minimum a mid-length gas system, or better a carbine gas system. The shorter the gas system, the harsher the recoil/return to battery, but IMO and in my personal experience, more reliable.
    $130 for a stripped lower is absolutely highway robbery, no two ways about it...

    I don't doubt your experience, but I am just wondering what your experience consists of as far as barrel length vs gas port location. I'm still learning about the AR platform and want to hear everyone's experiences and how they came to these conclusions

    Quote Originally Posted by tyrex13 View Post
    If you want to buy one and done, get a Colt 6920 or 6940 and you will have no regrets. That being said, BCM, RRA, Stag, Daniel Defense and are all really good complete rifles. There's probably nothing wrong with Bushmaster or DPMS, but I think you can get more for your money.

    ETA: after reading your post further down the thread I would look hard at the Colt 6940 and Stag Tactical. I would swap out the folding rear sight with a Larue rear.
    This advice is very good. However, I would steer clear of the 6940. It uses a proprietary barrel nut and with the monolithic upper you're kinda stuck with whatchat got. The Colt 6920 is almost the best value out there as far as what you get for the price. I know, I know, it only just looks like a basic AR, but it is the rifle that all other fighting rifles are compared against.

    Like he said, the 'big names' (DPMS, RRA, Stag, etc.) are rifles that will probably suit you just fine for a long time but if you're already spending close to a grand in some cases, PLEASE just get the 6920 or save up a few more bucks and get something like a BCM or a Daniel Defense DDM4.

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