[2 ARs in one?] .223 with .22lr or 9mm upper


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bp78
February 16, 2006, 05:26 PM
I'm just starting to shop for an AR. It'll be my only practical rifle for a while. My primary interest in getting one is for 3gun matches.

I really prefer the mid-length rifle and collapsable m4 style stock but understand that the longer .223 barrels are much better suited to matches.

No outdoor ranges exist close to me. So with whatever AR I buy, I'd also like to get either a 9mm upper or .22lr upper to go with it so I can shoot it at the local indoor range.

What would be required (or is it even possible) to have a:
- m4 style stock & flattop lower with both a
-- 20" .223 upper and
-- a mid-length 16" 9mm upper.

How many parts would I swap ever time i wanted to change out between the two? Would a .22lr upper be easier and how much cheaper to setup? Is this type of swap 10min or a 2hr ordeal?

Thanks. Still AR-clueless

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Tacoma
February 16, 2006, 08:24 PM
Teh M4 stock stays with the lower. The flat top arangement is part of the upper. No experience with a 9mm upper but I do have a .22 lr upper. Just push two pins, take the complete upper ( with sights/scope) off and install the other. Swap mags too. Takes maybe all of 2-3 minutes with no tools required.

WheelMan
February 16, 2006, 08:28 PM
I'm not sure what is available in those two items as I haven't really shopped them around, but I think I can help a little bit:

the stock (m4 or otherwise) is part of the lower so would be the same no matter what barreled upper you have attached.

The flat-topness is a characteristic of the upper, not the lower.

As far as time. It will take you longer to get the new upper out of wherever you keep it than to swap it out. On most guns you pop two pins out, swap, pop two pin back. About 10 seconds if you're drinking a glass of water at the same time.

(The upper includes the barrel, bolt & carrier and sight assemblies)

WheelMan
February 16, 2006, 08:29 PM
Hmm... I seem to be able to swap uppers faster than Tacoma but he can sure reply faster :)

bp78
February 16, 2006, 11:13 PM
I was reading the RRA page on their mid-length 9mm uppers and they listed swapping a slew of stuff to put on the 9mm upper.

Sounds like an ar15 can be pretty much anything you want. Does anyone make an 18" upper? Something between a 16" and 20"?

Bartholomew Roberts
February 17, 2006, 12:18 AM
I really prefer the mid-length rifle and collapsable m4 style stock but understand that the longer .223 barrels are much better suited to matches.

The longer barrels are only really handy if you need it to make power factor or need the longer sight radius due to eyesight issues IMO. Are you going to be competing in sanctioned matches or just informal local matches?

eab
February 17, 2006, 01:26 AM
If you want to have a .22 lr AR you better get a dedicated .22 lr upper. .22 lr bolt conversion things are the DEVEL!!! Are ROTC battalion has several brand new AR-15s; they put in .22 lr bolts to shoot at the indoor range. I used one last weekend and I could not fire more then 5 shots without a bullet getting jammed going into the camper. It was almost not worth shooting. :banghead:

bp78
February 17, 2006, 10:18 AM
Are you going to be competing in sanctioned matches or just informal local matches?

I may eventually try a sanctioned match, but who sanctions 3 gun matches? I thought they were loosely setup?

I'll probably go with basic optic on both dedicated uppers that I purchase, form other posts, I understood the tactical division was more active than limited/open sighted.

Are other 9mm uppers easier to install than the RRA?
http://www.rockriverarms.com/images/rra9mm.jpg

bp78
February 17, 2006, 12:47 PM
If you want to have a .22 lr AR you better get a dedicated .22 lr upper.

I was planning on a dedicated upper in either 9mm or .22lr. What is less expensive purchase wise, a .22lr upper or 9mm upper?

WheelMan
February 17, 2006, 12:56 PM
Regardless of the purchase price the .22 upper is going to be much (MUCH) cheaper to operate, so if you're going for best value for practice it's hard to beat a .22

bp78
February 17, 2006, 01:25 PM
I have no intentions of hiking, hunting, or otherwise taking an AR anywhere other than the range. I'd prefer a completely separate upper so that optics and their 0 stays in place for changes b/t .223 upper and .22lr upper.

The 9mm upper intrigues me only because I could still shoot it indoors and possibly employ it as a defensive house gun should I ever feel the need. A .22lr upper is probably much cheaper in the long run and likely my choice.

So, where do I start looking for parts kits to build out a mid-length .223 AR and include a .22lr upper assembly?

Coronach
February 17, 2006, 02:01 PM
I looked into the issue of .22 uppers vs .22 kits vs 9mm uppers, and I decided to go with the dedicated .22 upper. Here's my logic:

9mm Upper Pro:

You get to shoot 9mm, which is less expensive than .223.

9mm is also more powerful that .22LR, meaning that you can still have plinkariffic fun with plates and poppers and the upper can be used as-is for self-defense if you must do so.

Iron sights will be properly zeroed.

Reliable

Magazines don't "feel" like real .223 magazines, which might be an issue for training.

9mm Upper Con:

9mm is still waaaaaaaaay more expensive than .22LR

I believe that the 9mm requires that some parts be added to the lower for the magazines to seat properly. It's a temporary adjustment, but still minor PITA.

If you want to train with a certain scope to mimic your "real" upper, you need to buy a new scope (or swap it out and probably rezero).


.22LR Kit Pro:

Easily the most economical solution. You use your existing upper to shoot .22LR. The ammo is dirt cheap and the part itself is less expensive than a new upper.

Magazines lock into place with no modification of the lower.

Magazines "feel" like .223 magazines, which can help with training.

You can use your existing scope without remounting it on a new upper (though POA and POI will not coincide)

.22LR kit Con:

The kits can be finnicky.

The kits are less accurate than dedicated upper.

The upper gets really dirty.

Your iron sights will not be adjusted for POA/POI coincidence (unless you intend to rezero every time you use the kit).


.22LR Upper Pro:

No more expensive than a 9mm upper, but it shoots .22LR, which is cheaper than 9mm.

Magazines lock into place with no modification of the lower.

Your sights will be properly regulated.

Reliable.

Magazines "feel" like .223 magazines, which can help with training.

.22LR Upper Con:

Not as cheap as a kit.

If you want to train with a certain scope to mimic your "real" upper, you need to buy a new scope (or swap it out and probably rezero).



Those with more experience, feel free to add to this or correct me. For me and my needs, the .22 upper just made more sense.

Mike

Bartholomew Roberts
February 17, 2006, 02:47 PM
I may eventually try a sanctioned match, but who sanctions 3 gun matches? I thought they were loosely setup?

USPSA sanctions some matches. Various others are set up by local groups with varying degrees of formality. The ones I shoot at are mostly pretty informal with no power factor requirement, so barrel length isn't much of an issue.

If you are shooting a match with a power factor requirement, then barrel length becomes more important as you can't get too short before you start to lose enough velocity to make a difference. I think 16" is borderline and 17" is the minimum safe length; but you'd probably be better off taking advice from some of our more knowledgable 3-gun shooters who do compete in these matches and know a lot more about it than I do.

I can say that based on a shot timer and just fooling around, shorter barrels handle faster in close than the longer barrels do, though the difference is hardly dramatic (tenths of a second).

If you enjoyed reading about "[2 ARs in one?] .223 with .22lr or 9mm upper" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!