AR Questions


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H1500308
January 18, 2008, 10:35 PM
I'm in the market for an AR and I don't really know what to look for in one. Witht the plethora of models/manufacturers I don't know what to get. I do know that I'd use it for HD and just plain fun from time to time. I've checked out the Bushmaster and Rock River Arms site but I don't know what criteria I should use when selecting one. Also, what should I expect to pay for a quality AR? Not looking for a bargain basement example.

Thanks.

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newsavageowner
January 18, 2008, 10:52 PM
I'm researching a 16" AR for a gun ignorant friend of mine at the moment. I've read and heard very good things about LMT (Lewis Machine and Tool). You probably can't go wrong with RRA or Bushmaster either. Those who seem to know the most about ARs say that LMT is better than either though. You could always get a RRA lower (for the two stage trigger) and an LMT upper that has a 1/7 Twist Barrel instead of RRA's (or Bushmaster's) 1/9 Twist. The faster twist works better with heavier bullets. Also heard good things about Stag. If you narrow down the type AR you want, it would be easier to project the expected pricing. Do you want a 16", 20" or other?, Target or Tactical flavor etc....?

H1500308
January 18, 2008, 11:08 PM
Good questions...probably 20", tactical flavor. Keep the questions coming.

3pairs12
January 18, 2008, 11:10 PM
Flat top or carry handle? what kind of handguards do you prefer? are going to assemble your own? if so check out model 1 sales.

RockyMtnTactical
January 18, 2008, 11:17 PM
Stag or LMT is what I recommend.

DnPRK
January 18, 2008, 11:36 PM
For HD, shorter is better, so a 16" barrel would be best.

For fun, get a flat top because you can add a red dot sight or scope if you want.

ugaarguy
January 19, 2008, 12:53 AM
I really like the 1/9 twist barrels. They'll still stabilize bullets up to around 70 grains, but the twist isn't too fast for the 50 to 55 grain bullets either like 1/7 is.
probably 20", tactical flavor.
I'd go flat top, with either an F marked A frame front sight base, or a flip up front iron with a flip up rear iron (these are known as BUIS - Back-up Iron sight/s). From there add an optic suitable for the distances at which you plan to shoot.

Bartholomew Roberts
January 19, 2008, 01:01 AM
They'll still stabilize bullets up to around 70 grains, but the twist isn't too fast for the 50 to 55 grain bullets either like 1/7 is.

What do you mean by "too fast"? I ask because I shoot 55gr out of my 1/7 all the time with good accuracy. It is minor fractions of an inch at 100yds less accurate than a 1/9 but you have to be an exceptional shot to notice the difference. You also have to be shooting 55gr match ammo which few people do as most 55gr shooting is milsurp that is usually only 3-4MOA ammo at best anyway.

ugaarguy
January 19, 2008, 03:18 AM
What do you mean by "too fast"?
Allow me to clarify. Speer Reloading Manual Number 13 has pretty lengthy notes about the 1/7 twist barrels being too fast a twist for lighter weight commercial bullets which are generally constructed rather lightly for varmint hunting. They note that if velocity is not limited these lighter construction bullets are literally ripped apart by the excessive rpm upon exiting the bbl. I've not tested this myself because I've trusted the information presented by the reloading manuals. This of course doesn't affect the more heavily constructed 55gr FMJ rounds. I was simply trying to convey the versatility of the 1/9 twist bbl. to shoot a variety of bullet weights of varying construction for different purposes. I should have been more thorough in my previous post.

possum
January 19, 2008, 07:17 AM
what is the primary purpose of the ar gonna be?

if for hd/sd/truck gun and almost any other situation you would need the ar platform for the 16" barrel is the best choice.

i would get the flat top, allows you to mount optics flat to the upper reciever.
i reccomend eo-tech 1st and then aimpoint 2nd.

i suugest that you get a buis, i use matech, gg&g mad buis is also another good one.

everyone needs a sling and yes even when the gun is gonna be used in the hd role!
i suggest a one point sling, and sling plate attachment.

again if used for hd then you should replace the front sight with an xs front sight blade!

any more questions?

possum
January 19, 2008, 07:18 AM
as far as folks to buy form, i highly suggest bushmaster, stag, and if money isn't an issue then i would give www.slr15.com a goo hard look. my pic being the grail.

JonB
January 19, 2008, 11:11 AM
As you have probably noticed, AR's come in more flavors than life savers. Narrowing down what you like/want will help. I personally went with RRA just because I could buy it locally at a good price, and it had a midlength gas system on a 16" barrel (love those middies). I was looking mostly for range fun gun, perhaps for prairie dogs some day - which would be a good excuse to buy a varmint upper for it.

Anyway you'll get more opinions than you'll know what to do with. Also keep in mind that the platform is very modular, so you can go with something more on the basic side today, and 'upgrade' it as you go.

MMcfpd
January 19, 2008, 11:50 AM
Different approaches suit different people, so mine may not work for you. When I first began looking into getting an AR-15 it reminded me very much of my experience when buying my first computer in the early '80s. Researching that was opening a Pandora's Box of information that overwhelmed me and I just didn't know anybody who could help me out. Same deal many years later with buying a first AR-15.

Eventually, with both the computer and the AR, I decided that I'd never be able to adequately digest all the data that was swirling about until I had some hands on experience and I elected to just buy one of what seemed like a pretty standard configuration just to give me a traction point. In both cases I was a.) glad I did it and b.) discovered something or other that I'd do differently in the future.

You can get yourself started with a 16" flattop carbine with a 1:7 to 1:9 rifling twist from any of the first few tier manufacturers (Colt, LMT, RRA, Bushmaster, Stag, CMMG, Armalite, S&W to name a few that are fairly safe bets) and then learn a bunch about what you may like/dislike/want to add/change. Don't worry about whether or not it has all-weather tactical ashtrays at this point. If it is just a horrible fit for you (unlikely), you can easily sell or trade one of the named brands and move on to something that you'll be better able to decide about. And the Lego-like nature of ARs is such that you can make all sorts of changes to that basic model to fit your desires, once you have a little time on the gun.

Good luck, and come back with pictures!

tjhjunk
January 19, 2008, 12:57 PM
Let your wallet and conscious be your guide:D.
http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=6642

Tim:cool:

Soybomb
January 19, 2008, 02:22 PM
Allow me to clarify. Speer Reloading Manual Number 13 has pretty lengthy notes about the 1/7 twist barrels being too fast a twist for lighter weight commercial bullets which are generally constructed rather lightly for varmint hunting. They note that if velocity is not limited these lighter construction bullets are literally ripped apart by the excessive rpm upon exiting the bbl. I've not tested this myself because I've trusted the information presented by the reloading manuals. This of course doesn't affect the more heavily constructed 55gr FMJ rounds. I was simply trying to convey the versatility of the 1/9 twist bbl. to shoot a variety of bullet weights of varying construction for different purposes. I should have been more thorough in my previous post.
The OP said he wanted a rifle for HD though, for that I'm with Bartholomew Roberts, 1/7 will let you shoot cheap 55gr target stuff and long heavy 70+ defensive loads. I don't see why he should worry about light varmint loads spinning apart unless he's worried about HD from gophers :D

Coronach
January 19, 2008, 02:39 PM
My answer for a good general use AR is...

16" barrel
"gov profile" or lighter
1/7 twist, but 1/9 will work fine 99% of the time
Midlength gas
fixed front sight tower
flat top upper
detachable carry handle or "BUIS", your choice (BUIS would be my preference)
standard carbine lower (M4 style collapsible stock)

I would go Stag or CMMG to get the configuration you want. Any major maker can get you something close to this. The base rifle is a good as-is for almost anything you want to do, and can be tweaked with more bells and whistles once you figure out what you want it to do.

Mike

ugaarguy
January 19, 2008, 02:50 PM
The OP said he wanted a rifle for HD though, for that I'm with Bartholomew Roberts, 1/7 will let you shoot cheap 55gr target stuff and long heavy 70+ defensive loads. I don't see why he should worry about light varmint loads spinning apart unless he's worried about HD from gophers
If you read back through the countless threads here discussing penetration of the 5.56 round in urban environments there are many who advocate shooting a slightly lighter constructed bullet which will still penetrate an attacker well, but start coming apart and rapidly losing velocity after initial barrier penetration. It's just another piece of information to consider.

...and hey you never know when those mutant gophers and prairie dogs are gonna attack. :neener:

Bartholomew Roberts
January 19, 2008, 08:04 PM
They note that if velocity is not limited these lighter construction bullets are literally ripped apart by the excessive rpm upon exiting the bbl.

OK, now I understand the point better. FWIW, the lightest I have run through my 1:7 is 45gr Winchester JHP; but it did just fine with no problems. I have heard that the really thin skinned, light and fast varmint rounds can spin apart though.

I like Coronach's AR recommendation. It is a pretty good one for someone buying their first AR as you can do just about anything with it.

ckay
January 20, 2008, 12:52 AM
My RRA with chrome lined 1/7 shoots great. Eats 55gr and 62gr Wolf all day with great groups. 1/9 isn't as versatile as a 1/7 IMO. As far as what to build, RRA, Stag, BM, LMT...can't go wrong. I do prefer RRA over Stag and BM. I like LMTs as well.

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