Bushmaster Carbon 15


March 16, 2011, 10:46 AM
I recently got a bushmaster carbon 15 for 649.99 from Gander Mountain. After I bought it I found some less that great reviews about my recent purchase. I ignored the insults made on many of the forums and put some rounds down range. Seemed to function fine but didnt have enough time to mess with the red dot adjustments. Now I am asking myself would this gun be worth upgrading ang using as a RE-build with maybe a bushmaster aluminum lower and upper? and upgrading the trigger and bcg? I dont have the money to go out and buy an all new ar all at once and I figure for a beginner this would be a good starting gun to build off of.

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March 16, 2011, 11:13 AM
Just shoot it and see what you like/dislike about it. I put several hundred rounds downrange before I had any clue what features I actually wanted and needed.

March 16, 2011, 11:18 AM
Yea, thats what i plan on doing I just know that there are alot of negative opinions on this rifle but I feel like it is a good starting place and a pretty good deal for an ar-15

March 16, 2011, 11:18 AM
I agree. Shoot it until failure. Then start replacing what needs replacing.

March 16, 2011, 11:18 AM
If I were you I would focus on building the LIGHTEST AR15 possible. It would be sick to have a sub 4lb AR15.

-Skelatonized stock
-Carbon fiber for end

March 16, 2011, 11:23 AM
That would be pretty sick but I dont know how possible (or affordable) it would be to do that. I just want a good shooter and all the parts seem to be standard quality bushmaster parts just not to sure about how the carbon reciever will hold up. I guess only time on the range will tell.

March 16, 2011, 11:27 AM
FWIW, I haven't seen any Carbon 15 receivers break. Do a lengthy search and see what you come up with. In the mean time, shoot the snot out of it.

If you're really concerned and determined to replace your BCG, go with Daniel Defense, LMT, or Bravo Company, and get a complete group. I don't see any reason to replace your trigger.

March 16, 2011, 11:50 AM
Yeah, have seen a few Kaboom threads over on CALGuns but they were from like 03-04 and they may have been from the makers of the Original Carbon15 which I believe was Auto Ordinance. I was looking at a nickle boron bolt but not sure yet. Im nursing an ankle injury so once that is cleared up I plan on puttin many rounds down the pipe.

Dr T
March 16, 2011, 01:09 PM

If you decide to "rebuild", with this gun you are almost throwing the whole thing away and starting over. By the time you finish, you will have much more money in the gun than an equivalent gun would have cost you in the first place. Remember the old adage that it is difficult to make a silk purse out of a sows ear. If the gun shoots well, ignore the critics. It is always easier for a (would be) pundit to get noticed with a bad review than with a good one. (And negative reviewers tend to copy each other. Then there is always the one that says that the product is the greatest thing ever created.) Another old saying: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

On the other hand, if you are rebuilding it for recreation, go ahead and have fun. It helps keep the parts makers in business.


March 16, 2011, 01:14 PM
Yeah, Dr T..... I suppose your right. I just think it would be a good learning expirience as well as I have a slight case of gun ADD an i think if i try to save over the next year or so to buy my ar of choice I will get tired of waiting and ultimately waste the money and still be where i am now. But if i buy a piece at a time as i can afford it then atleast if i get my ADD again then I am left with a pretty nice rifle. Also I may just change the BCG and leave the carbon reciever. After that it is just functional upgrades such as quad rails and the Lucid HD7.

March 16, 2011, 01:21 PM
Black rifle fever my friend! No matter what you get you will always think about doing something to or for it. Shoot the thing and enjoy!

March 16, 2011, 01:22 PM
Also I may just change the BCG and leave the carbon reciever.

I wouldn't even do that unless it fails. I have a bushy bcg and I plan on running it until it breaks. It's not mpi tested and it isn't properly staked. Yet I evidentally don't shoot enough for there to be any issues. If I ever take an AR class with a high round count and decide to use that rifle, I'll likely just buy a bcm bcg and toss it in the range bag for a spare.

March 16, 2011, 01:31 PM
I bought one when i turned 18 and never got to shoot it before i had to sell it, so I never caught the fever but since I bought this one and have shot it im loving it and definately caught the fever. After hearing from you guys and not having alot of Bushy Bashing on here i may just take my basic rifle and do some upgrading to the optic, add some iron sights and a quad rail and spend the remaining money on large quntitys of ammo and a yearly range pass.

March 16, 2011, 01:43 PM
Yeah, have seen a few Kaboom threads over on CALGuns but they were from like 03-04 and they may have been from the makers of the Original Carbon15 which I believe was Auto Ordinance.
Professional Ordnance was the company that originally made the Carbon15.

Bushmaster has improved the rifle since they bought it (although most of the improvement has been just using better materials and better quality control).

Also I may just change the BCG and leave the carbon reciever.
One of the major improvements Bushmaster made was with the BCG (whereas the PO C15s had bolt problems). I'd keep the stock one until it breaks and then maybe replace it with a "better" one.

Just shoot the hell out of your Bushie and enjoy it ... don't let some of the gun snobs get you down. They're a great little lightweight carbine.

99% of people that own ARs never get anywhere near wearing them out (nor shooting them to their full potential) so this one should serve you well for many years.

IIRC Bushmaster has a lifetime warranty. So I wouldn't worry.

March 16, 2011, 01:45 PM
spend the remaining money on large quntitys of ammo

That's the best modification and most fun to be made on any AR. :)

March 16, 2011, 01:50 PM
^^this! :D

March 16, 2011, 01:53 PM
Love my Carbon15 - ignore the haters and enjoy your rifle.

March 16, 2011, 02:03 PM
ForumSurfer: I think most ar owners would wholly agree with that statement.

DammitBoy: How long have you had yours and have you done anything to it or left it all original?

March 16, 2011, 02:18 PM
Had mine for over a year and no real problems except loading remington hp.Fixed it simple enough have close to 1500 rounds through it no issues.It's original except a simmons scope.My advise keep it clean keep it oiled and it should fire as long as you can stand it.

March 16, 2011, 02:20 PM
What do you use to clean the carbon portions of your rifle?

March 16, 2011, 05:03 PM
Dirt works pretty good to clean it with...maybe some singe 0 steel wool....JUST KIDDING. A lint free rag and some elbow grease! Enjoy the rifle Tony and quit worrying about the haters on here...People envy what they can't have or don't own....it's as simple as that! If anything set your sights on a service grade M1 Garand....no one can talk about about them!

March 16, 2011, 07:11 PM
Yeah, I'm gonna save a little for my next toy probably an m1 but get some new toys for the bushy. Thanks for all the help and support guys glad we didnt get any haters on this one.

March 16, 2011, 07:37 PM
There's nothing wrong with a Carbon-15 for what it is. Nothing at all. But it all depends on the price. At christmas time, the Sportsman's Warehouse where I live had a Carbon 15 for $599. But, they also had a S&W M&P15OR on Sale; normally $949 for $749 and a $100 S&W rebate: Meaning the M&P15OR was $649. Well; that's not even a comparison. Obviously I took the M&P15. But if funds were tight; and I wasn't patient and couldn't wait or look around for a sale; and I just HAD TO HAVE an AR15 today; then there's nothing wrong with a Carbon-15. But if it's the same price as some of the other models on sale, then that's a different thing all together. The carbon-15 and the S&W Sporter are excellent for people who want an AR; want it NOW; can't wait for sales or to save more. It's not like you're going to be using it like a military or law enforcement agency would be using it.

March 16, 2011, 09:06 PM
I had a smith and wesson about 3 or 4 years ago and sold it before I got to shoot it because of a layoff. However, as far as quality of fit and finish I don't see or feel a huge difference between the smith sporter and the carbon 15 as a matter of fact an aquaintance of mine has a smith and said he would be looking for the next sale on the carbon 15's after getting behind the one I have. I guess to each his own and as you said they are both good for an entry level shooter.

March 16, 2011, 10:12 PM
DammitBoy: How long have you had yours and have you done anything to it or left it all original?

I've had mine for 3 years and have run about 1000+ rounds a year through it. No issues of any kind, runs like a typewriter (see google for examples of typewriters).

I added a green laser and a Beta C-Mag - both work great.


March 16, 2011, 11:15 PM
Thats sweet man.... I was thinking when i got my rifle that if all goes well with that, that i would buy one of the carbon pistols. But that speak well for the carbon rifles, they use the the same technology and the same type of action and all. Nice man, very nice.

Mr. T
March 17, 2011, 12:37 AM
I don't know if I buy into all the negative remarks on Bushmaster products. There are a lot of gun monkeys on here that are really into shooting, that are probably amateur gunsmiths in their own right, but I bought a Bushmaster Patrolman's Rifle some years ago and I couldn't be happier with it. It's accurate and it goe's bang everytime my "booger hook" pulls the "bang switch"! It shoots every type of ammo I've ever run through it...I've never had any kind of problem with it. It's been a good gun for me and I couldn't be happier with it!

December 28, 2012, 10:03 PM
Hey guys, newbie here. Have a quick question. I recently was given a top load carbon 15. Since it is a (Ca. Compliant) top load. Can simply changing out the lower receiver make it able to accept normal magazines? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks and God bless.

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