Ruger SR-556 as first AR?


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gadgetguy1288
July 15, 2009, 03:22 AM
Im fixing to get my tax refund(finally) and Ive got some extra cash laying around right now as well that Ive been saving for an AR anyways.

I was looking at the S&W M&P15T(Im wanting an AR thats a flattop, no fixed front sight, and I want a quad rail), when I came across the mention of the Ruger, and after doing some research online I think I like the Ruger more.

What do you guys think? Which would you get?

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chrissmallwood
July 15, 2009, 03:41 AM
Me personally I would get the Ruger. You get alot of gun for the money with it.

Big_E
July 15, 2009, 03:44 AM
Well depends on what your budget is. The only review I have seen for the Ruger 556 was from Guns and Ammo so I took that with a grain or two of salt.

The Ruger retails at about $2K i think. The S&W which i think is considered one of the best bang for buck model can be had around $800. Although the gas-piston system will keep the AR cleaner and keep the bolt cool, a DI AR will still be very reliable if you keep it clean... which anyone should do with every gun.

Until more people have had hands on with the Ruger around here I would stick with the S&W. I have shot a Mini 14 and Mini 30 and was not impressed and a little disappointed. Ruger has also had a series of recalls lately so that is a thing to consider.

C-grunt
July 15, 2009, 06:28 AM
I handled the Ruger at the NRA show here in Phx a few months ago and was fairly impressed. As a first AR you could definitely do worse. But I havent heard of anyone who actually owns one yet, so who knows how reliable or accurate it is.

A Colt 6940 fits the bill for what you want and should be cheaper than the Ruger. Plus its a Colt so it will have a good resale if you end up not liking it. A few guys on my squad got in on a group deal for some 6940s and they really like them. They shoot good, even with cheap Wolf ammo and none of them have had a malfunction yet. My only gripe with it is the rear back up iron sights they have. Im not a fan of them as they feel kinda flimsy. We had an earlier version of them in the Army back in 2003/2004 that broke a lot. But its a easy fix for ya.

stubbicatt
July 15, 2009, 08:46 AM
I personally think, that for a semi automatic rifle, which is not capable of magazine dumps, that the benefits of the gas piston are dubious at best.

My prairie dog hunting companion has a DI Bushmaster varmint AR15. He has no issues with that rifle, it has never jammed on him. The bolt and bolt carrier do get dirty, but they are relatively easy to get clean again.

Unless you see yourself pouring gobs of ammo out the barrel at a high rate, and you might see yourself exactly this way, I think you can purchase a very good AR15 for quite a bit less.

Myself, I'm sort of a Ruger fan. But if I were to buy a 223 rifle these days I believe mine would be a Mini 14. I just like the more traditional lines, and the rock-in magazines. I guess they are just about the same, accuracy wise, as a standard AR15.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
July 15, 2009, 09:56 AM
Why? For a little more than half that, you can get a true AR, not a quasi-"AR" that is lighter and just as good, and probably more accurate.

A Colt 6940 fits the bill for what you want and should be cheaper than the Ruger. Plus its a Colt so it will have a good resale if you end up not liking it. A few guys on my squad got in on a group deal for some 6940s and they really like them.

That's good advice. Or the S&W. Or any other # of top quality makers (Noveske, DD, Sabre, CMMG, etc.)

Charger442
July 15, 2009, 12:41 PM
I guess they are just about the same, accuracy wise, as a standard AR15.

I could not disagree more. My experiences with a Ruger Mini-14 many years ago are what prodded me to buying and getting into ARs shortly after selling that Ruger. The only reason i wish i still had my Mini14 was so that i could have sold it during the panic buying this last fall and winter and doubled my money.

In my opinion, it was a gun that was not very accurate, unless you think getting a 4 inch group at 50 yards as being accurate. I tried to love the mini-14 as i am also a Ruger fan, but i just cant. i think its a gun that is easily recognized as an "assault weapon" and has that cool factor thing on TV shows (see A-team, Fall Guy, Simon and Simon, probably Miami Vice too). The long blow-back make unnecessary recoil (its a 223!) and follow-up shots are tough to achieve rapidly.

If you like to go out and shoot from the hip, and unload mag after mag without really caring what kind of accuracy you are getting, then maybe its the gun for you. But i will take any, and i mean ANY low end, worst shooting AR over the best Mini-14 you could bring to the table, any day of the week.

Just my .02

jhco
July 15, 2009, 01:00 PM
Something like the Ruger AR should be waited on until it has passed the test of time 6-12 months IMO as it is a new undertaking for Ruger and lately they have had a bad reputation for screwing new designs up.

freakshow10mm
July 15, 2009, 01:13 PM
I agree. Never buy the first of something and sure as hell not a Ruger. Their track record lately is a joke.

jackdanson
July 15, 2009, 01:19 PM
Something like the Ruger AR should be waited on until it has passed the test of time 6-12 months IMO as it is a new undertaking for Ruger and lately they have had a bad reputation for screwing new designs up.

Yeah, I agree. Ruger is notorious for releasing recalls of new products and new products having problems. Although I will say that it's nice to see a mfg man up and fix mistakes. Still, I'd give it a year if I was getting a 556... plus the price should go down a bit by then. The sr556 is meant to retail for 1500, which means it should be selling in stores for 1250.

CoRoMo
July 15, 2009, 01:36 PM
I won't tell you to save up a little more and buy something else, because I hate responses like that. Many, if not most, AR enthusiasts tend to be mil-spec and direct impingement fundamentalists, and I completely understand that as I have a preference to high quality too.

However, between the two...

The M&P15T is a good M4 to begin with. You would be very happy with it and the differences between it and the LMT CQB16 will likely not be of great importance to you. If those differences ever become important, buy one of the top tier rifles but keep the M&P.:)

The Ruger is still sort of "untested" since it hasn't spent years in use by guys like you and I, but I'm sure you probably realize that. I haven't seen anyone delve deep into the features of this gun, but eventually we'll know all there is to know about it. From all initial accounts, that I've heard, I'd think you would be thrilled to have this rifle too, and again, any lack of mil-spec features isn't going to make a huge difference in the eyes of a shooter new to the AR pool.

You certainly have chosen two fine rifles to start out an AR collection with, meaning, you could start out with a much cheaper rifle that you eventually might regret buying. I'm not new to the AR waters, and I tend to like these two models, but I don't own either. I have been planning to buy an M4 for my wife for a long time now, and I began with the M&P as my choice. It is a solid gun that doesn't cost two grand and will work fine for her with the uses she'll put it to. I might actually end up buying her a Colt, but it wouldn't really be her's if I do. :D

Then came along the SR-556 and my plans for her rifle changed to that gun. If all things being equal between the two rifles (I have no idea if they are), I'll definitely buy the Ruger when the time comes to buy her the rifle, simply because I've been a fan of Ruger and gas piston M4s. At this gun's price, it is a good choice IMHO to get into the gas piston design seeing that the others are so dang expensive. Members have found this gun in the $1,400 range FYI.

RP88
July 15, 2009, 02:20 PM
any AR that you've heard of is a good starter, since they will hold value and have reputable quality. Just remember that quality goes up with price. With reputable AR dealers, you DO get what you pay for.

Another idea is to look into getting a Del-Ton kit if you're on a real budget. That way, you'll have to assemble it, which is IMO something every semi-serious AR owner or above should become well-versed in. You will also save a good deal of money should ARs not be for you; although I sold mine, I would not hesitate to get another one from Del-Ton. For about $700, you can get a real nice gun that you can learn on (not a serious duty rifle, but a very tough plinker).

If you do a lot of research, you can also skip the beginner gun and jump into building your own (err...building = buying parts and putting it together yourself. For example: buttstock kit + stripped lower + lower parts kit + order-customized upper + 30 minutes putting it all together = you 'built' your own AR). You'll save about 20-25% worth of money and you'll have a rifle the exact way YOU wanted it.

I'd pass on a Ruger. A lot of its cost comes from the GP system, the rails and handguards, and other expensive aftermarket goodies that make you wonder how much of the price is for the actual craftmanship of the rifle. IMO, not worth it, especially since there is no general consensus on it yet.

Heck
July 15, 2009, 02:57 PM
I could not be happier with my Del-ton kit. For a range gun and something to grab when i'm out on the 4wheeler its perfect. I have less than $700 in the gun and it has been 100% reliable through about 700 rounds. Good idea for a first AR.

rizbunk77
July 15, 2009, 03:39 PM
Bushmaster xm15e2s, ORC. MOA rifle. mine was less than 800.00 bought spring before last. Would not trade it for anything. There was a review in Small Arms Review of the Bushmaster plant a couple years ago, and after seeing those hard working folks building those rifles I knew I had to get one.

KBintheSLC
July 15, 2009, 04:03 PM
The Ruger is on my list for my first AR... finally, the reliability/durability of my AK with the weight, ergonomics and ability to customize of an AR. They tried to do it with the Sig 556, but the rifle was a bit heavy and lacked AR parts compatibility. They tried to do it with the FNH SCAR, but the $3000 price tag makes me gag. I think Ruger has finally made a piston AR for the rest of us.

Can't wait to get one. Can't wait for the SR 308... or the SR 6.8

gadgetguy1288
July 15, 2009, 07:42 PM
what do you guys think of SOG armory?

Search didnt come up with much

GTSteve03
July 15, 2009, 07:57 PM
If you want a gas piston AR, get the LMT MRP Piston rifle.

If you want to get a DI AR, S&W, Colt, LMT and Noveske are good choices.

ugaarguy
July 15, 2009, 08:07 PM
The Ruger is on my list for my first AR... finally, the reliability/durability of my AK
First, throwing a piston in there doesn't eliminate the close clearances and daisy head bolt. Second, long term reliability and durability are still to be determined.
with the weight, ergonomics and ability to customize of an AR.
Have you handled an SR-556 yet? I have, and they're very heavy - very front heavy in particular. It's a 16" carbine that weighs the same as a 20" A2 heavy barrel.

I'm interested to see how the SR-556 holds up, but right now it's unproven. Known high quality AR-15s with the same, better, or similar features can be had for the same or less money. Namely, LMT's CQB MRP Defender Piston model gives you a piston operated AR with monolithic rail, quick change barrel capability, LMT front & rear BUIS, and SOPMOD stock has the exact same MSRP as the Ruger.

SHvar
July 16, 2009, 12:18 AM
Depends, Im told that the SR556 is front heavy but cant tell you if it is or not. I do have a Bushmaster GP rifle which is a Bushy rifle with POF design by license, its not front heavy, in fact its only .2 lbs (3.2 ounces) more than a standard M4.
If you want the GP rifle of your choice check them out, look them over close. For the price POF cannot be beat for what they offer.
I have heard that the SR556 sells in some places for $1420-$1590.

C-grunt
July 16, 2009, 02:03 AM
Oh they are front heavy for sure. Probably because of the piston and the adjustable gas block thingy (technical term).

gadgetguy1288
July 16, 2009, 02:44 AM
Im gonna go with the M&P15T, and a few Magpul Mods(gonna upgrade to the MBUS sights, and a MIAD grip), PMAGs(I like the look and Ive heard loads of great things about em, and an eotech clone and magnifier, if I can find one I like.

Also looking to get a .22 conversion. but had another question:

will the CMMG bolt conversion kit work with the M&P15T, and if so how easy is it to change out? How much do extra mags run for it? Are there any companies that make a similar kit?

Thanks again guys for the help!


(this is getting expensive already :P)

ThePunisher'sArmory
July 16, 2009, 02:54 AM
Get a bushmaster they are half the price and reliable. Just as everyone mentioned keep it clean! I got this one, "pre Obama" for $780 used and is a hoot to shoot, and still fairly accurate. (needs a new barrel) I saw a flat top upper w/fixed sight gas block and adjustable stock for $880 new at a gun show so prices are coming down. Pick yours up today:D

ThePunisher'sArmory
July 16, 2009, 02:55 AM
looks like i posted too late, oh well for your second AR get a bushy!

Guns and more
July 16, 2009, 12:17 PM
Ruger=$2000 vs. LMT=$2000. I vote LMT every time.

12131
July 16, 2009, 04:46 PM
By KBintheSLC:
The Ruger is on my list for my first AR... finally, the reliability/durability of my AK...
I know it's your money, and you spend it however you like, but, may I ask, how did you come up with this conclusion, for a brand new and unproven gun?

kamagong
July 16, 2009, 04:49 PM
I am also in the process of acquiring my first AR. While the Ruger may be a fine weapon, I'm not a fan of the proprietary parts. I want an AR because of the huge aftermarket available, so I'm not going to buy one that has limited options from the get go.

batex
July 16, 2009, 08:43 PM
I'm new to the AR market as well and would like to get a nice gun, first time. I've looked at LMT, S&W, Rock River, LaRue (would build my own from their upper) and also the Ruger. I'm leaning toward a traditional DI high quality build, probably a LMT.

ALso, several responders to this post have said the Ruger is selling for $2,000. Well, that's not true, at least in my area. Two local dealers have had them and both wanted about the same which was right at $1550 which I assume is MSRP. I've held both of them...They seem a little heavy compared to other AR's I've held, but all in all it seems to be a very nice package. I really hope Ruger does well with this gun as everyone will benefit if they do.

possum
July 16, 2009, 09:35 PM
if you do get one, let us know how it does.

now back to your question. the sr9 and the lcp 2 of the 4 newest firearms that ruger has came out with has had issues, therefore i would be a little hesitant. also i normally like to let other people be the first to get something new, i like for it to be out for a while so i can read and hear about their track record. honestly i normally wait to hear when one goes through a high round count training course, and makes it, and that is a good reason for me to look into it if it meets all those requirements.

also i am not a fan of the gun companies, trying to make the ar into an ak(piston ran). i have had no issues with the ar design in 2 deployments to the sandbox, over 6 years in the Army, and years of shooting and training with my personal guns.

lipadj46
July 16, 2009, 10:57 PM
I could not disagree more. My experiences with a Ruger Mini-14 many years ago are what prodded me to buying and getting into ARs shortly after selling that Ruger. The only reason i wish i still had my Mini14 was so that i could have sold it during the panic buying this last fall and winter and doubled my money.


Why are you talking about a mini-14? The OP is asking about Ruger's piston AR. I say if the OP want's a gas piston AR the Ruger appears to be a good choice especially at $1400-$1500.

Also people need to understand that the Ruger AR is never going to get a ringing endorsement in any internet forum due to the DI fanboys and the anti-ruger crowd. I do think Ruger should offer a 1:7 twist barrel and I'm sure they will.

SHvar
July 18, 2009, 01:07 AM
"Oh they are front heavy for sure. Probably because of the piston and the adjustable gas block thingy"
I think thats but a small amount of that extra weight, the primary reason is that big chunk of aluminum with rails on 4 sides that sits in front of the reciever.
Rugers piston design could add extra weight to it, I havent handled one yet, and I havent had a chance to see the GP design closely. Maybe the barrel is also a heavier profile, something like an Hbar profile, that could explain the primary difference.
After all Ruger did make the cold hammer forged barrel, maybe its a heavy profile also.

possum
July 18, 2009, 01:11 AM
"Oh they are front heavy for sure. Probably because of the piston and the adjustable gas block thingy"
heavy up front is a good thing imho, will help you manage muzzle rise. that combined with a good muzzle break and the appropriate grip would set you up for great success in rapid fire situations.

Evergreen
July 18, 2009, 01:11 AM
I was about to purchase a Ruger SR-556, which I found at a smokin deal for $1450, but turned it down. I know most places sell this gun for around $1600. The reason why I turned it down is it is a very new and not extensively tested. You will be the guinea pig, and I rather others, richer or better suppplied (LEO/Miliatry/Beta Testsers etc) people do the testing than myself.

It looks like an awesome gun and I wish I bought it, but I decided for the same price I can buy an LMT MRP CQB 16 with exchangeable barrels and a long time proven record as being a reliable and high quality rifle I know will not fail me. For that price, all rifles are very high quality and the average user won't see much of a difference I am told unless you are going into the battlefield. On that note, I would still want a gun with a proven track record of quality and reliability.

As far as piston guns that I hear are superior in quality, I think LWRC and Robinson XCR are winners and a better, safer bet than the Ruger SR-556.

W.E.G.
July 19, 2009, 12:26 AM
Rugers are way overpriced for what you get.

Who in their right mind would pay $1500 for an unnecessarily-heavy, unproven, and nothing-special Ruger, when you can get a flawless new Colt 6920 for at least $200 less?

Note to the audience - that gas piston has no talismanic qualities.

None at all.

Rshooter
July 19, 2009, 01:13 AM
I am a DI fan myself but my new build has been torpedoed by Ruger's SR-556 release, :eek: I want one. With the special work on the bolt it seems that they have spent some time already working out the kinks. If you want to pan Ruger because of what Bill did over ten years ago that is fine but I have several Ruger guns that have round counts in the thousands. His politics might have been bad but his guns are great.

You should be able to get them for $1250 to $1500.

SHvar
July 19, 2009, 01:55 AM
There have been a few Ruger firearms with recalls, or problems, none were rifles that I know of, and how many manufacturers as big and extensive as Ruger have had less than 3 firearm models with problems? I venture to guess very very few.
My Rugers have been flawless minus the mini-14s accuracy after one or two shots.

rogertc1
July 19, 2009, 06:36 AM
Oh Boy I can't wait until the Ruger 1911A1 comes out!!!!!!

USBP379
August 2, 2009, 09:43 AM
Rugers are way overpriced for what you get.

Who in their right mind would pay $1500 for an unnecessarily-heavy, unproven, and nothing-special Ruger, when you can get a flawless new Colt 6920 for at least $200 less?

Note to the audience - that gas piston has no talismanic qualities.

None at all.

Are you on every site on the Internet with this? Why are you so dead set against the Ruger variant? More importantly, have you seen/handled/fired one?

Probably not...

GreenTN
August 2, 2009, 10:20 AM
I like the Sig 556 platform better than the Ruger...
The Ruger is a gas-piston AR that looks like an AR
The Sig 556 is a gas piston AK that looks like an AR

thegooch
August 2, 2009, 08:51 PM
For the price of the Ruger I'd much rather have a Daniel Defense XV M4

http://www.aimsurplus.com/acatalog/Daniel_Defense_XV_M4_Carbine_7.0_Omega.html

Charger442
August 2, 2009, 11:42 PM
Why are you talking about a mini-14?

i was responding to the man who said that a mini-14 had the same accuracy as a standard AR.

The OP can do what he wants. but i think its a steep price to pay for the new Ruger AR.

wally
August 2, 2009, 11:50 PM
But if I were to buy a 223 rifle these days I believe mine would be a Mini 14. I just like the more traditional lines, and the rock-in magazines.

I really love my Mini-14 and Mini-30, but they are closer to an AK accuracy and reliability wise than to an AR. Lack of good 20 or 30 round mags holds the Mini-30 back. Mini-14 mags from Ruger are now available in 20 or 30 round versions, but cost 2X+ AR or AK mags.

--wally.

W.E.G.
August 3, 2009, 04:01 PM
Are you on every site on the Internet with this? Why are you so dead set against the Ruger variant? More importantly, have you seen/handled/fired one?

Probably not...

No.
Just three or four that I frequent.

I'm not dead set against the Ruger.

You are right.
I have NOT handled the Ruger.
I've looked for them in a few places, but not laid hands on one yet.

I can read though.
Do you disagree that the gun is front-heavy?
Do you disagree that there have been reports of the gun chewing up the buffer tube?
Do you disagree that the Colt 6920 is available for $1,200 or less, whereas the Ruger is $1,500 and up?

Yes, I have an opinion on this topic.

In case you didn't notice, this is a discussion board.

I see you have 4 whole posts here.

If wagging your finger at me is what it takes for you to participate in the discussion, please wag on.

Welcome to THR.

amprecon
September 14, 2009, 03:20 PM
What parts of the SR-556 are proprietary and not interchangeable with other AR's aside from the piston parts? If they offered it in 6.8spc I'd be seriously interested.

wally
September 14, 2009, 03:27 PM
Me personally I would get the Ruger. You get alot of gun for the money with it.

I went to the last gun show planning to get a Ruger SR-556, but I ended up with a Colt 6940 for the exact same out the door price. Seemed a better deal in the long run right now. Time will tell how well the Ruger prices and guns hold up.

--wally.

KBintheSLC
September 14, 2009, 03:37 PM
My experiences with a Ruger Mini-14 many years ago are what prodded me to buying and getting into ARs shortly after selling that Ruger.

Key words bolded.

New Mini's are far more accurate than the "classics".

stchman
September 14, 2009, 03:41 PM
The SR556 is complete AR lower. This means you can buy all the AR mags you want.

As far as accessories, the SR556 comes pretty loaded. About the only thing you would want to do it get some good optics IMO.

xaml
July 9, 2010, 02:42 AM
You get what you pay for in all things.

I just picked up the LMT for my son and it is a great gun. I have held the Ruger SR556 too and it looks and feels good. However, I purchased the SR22-R for my son back in Nov09 and it too looks good and feels good. But the real issue with Ruger's as I see is they don't have the engineering and design experience for these types of ARs. I have had issues with the SR22-R and plan on dumping it as soon as I can and plan on getting one of the other 22LR ARs for training. I like the SW 22 ARs that have the same basic design of a standard AR controls. The original design of the SR22-R was great with being able to use the ruger 10/22 mags, etc. but the gun is hard to disassemble and reassemble and it has an alloy screw to put upper and lower together and it will strip out over time and have to be sent back to be fixed and I talked to an engineer at the NRA convention in Charlotte a few weeks ago and he didn't seem to care much about my suggestion on how to fix the issues. These gun mfg should take some lessons from the Air Force they know more about light weight alloys than any one. If your plan on using this AR to defend your self and family then get a good one like; LMT, DD, Colt, etc.. My issue with Colt is I have to replace all the parts to improve it. With LMT I can purchase a new Upper MRP in 204, 6.8 spc, etc.. and it only takes a one or two minutes to swap out Uppers. It comes with fairly good LMT BUIS and everything else is top notch.

Xaml
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
CZ-75 Pre-b, CZ P-07 Duty, Browning BDA 380, etc..
LMT CQB MRP Defender 2000 DI
NRA Pistol Instructor, SC CWP, UT CWP, PA CWP

C-grunt
July 9, 2010, 03:21 AM
Holy zombie thread Batman!!!!

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