Anybody try one of these? DPMS .308 Panther


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Nightcrawler
March 6, 2004, 07:55 PM
Anybody try out a DPMS .308 caliber Long-Range Panther rifle? SWAT Magazine (http://www.swatmag.com) game it a solid review.

I'm not terribly fond of ARs, but I like the way this one looks. Comes in a few configurations, including an 18" and 24" bull barrel. All are flat tops and have free floated handguards.

I think the most interesting thing about them is their price. The MSRP for the standard .308 Panther is $1,149.00. Compare that to the price of a similarly-configured Armalite!

They take 10 round magazines, but I believe they take the same mags as the Stoner (KAC) SR-25, so pre-bans are available (and in any case, if the ban sunsets 20 rounders shouldn't be any problem). I'm not real concerned with capacity on this type of rifle anyway. I mean, yeah, Bushmaster is making a special .308 AR-clone that takes FAL mags, but you know, my FAL already takes FAL mags, so it's not really any big whoop for me.

http://www.dpmsinc.com/products/RFA2-308.jpg
24" Panther Long Range Rifle

http://www.dpmsinc.com/products/RFA2-308B.jpg
18" Panther Long Range Rifle

I'd only have a few questions about the rifle that'd I'd want answered before considering a purchase.

-Reliability? How's the reliability? This rifle isn't marked as a "match" rifle, so it should be considered a "field" rifle. Will this rifle hold up to field conditions? Will it require excessive cleaning? The gas system results in PITA cleaning to begin with; no need to further complicate it by the rifle itself being a big prima donna.

-Ammo? Will it function with the surplus Australian, Portugese, and other 7.62mm ammo out there? (South African isn't that great, as I found out after I bought 1,400 rounds. I don't think it's actually milsurp anyways.) I mean, sure, your best bet with this kind of rifle will be premium match ammo, but the price advantage of this rifle is negated if you have to spend fifty cents a round on ammo to shoot it. It needs to be able to digest a lot of milsurp.

So, anybody got their paws on one of these yet?

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jem375
March 6, 2004, 08:14 PM
not yet, but in the future....no doubt

Rob96
March 7, 2004, 05:59 AM
According to their website, they also have a 16" carbine version. Check the AR board for info on them. If I remember correctly a few people have them and like them.

clubsoda22
March 7, 2004, 06:41 AM
Judging by the accuracy of DPMS' similarly equipped .223 rifles, this thing's probably a real tack driver! Sub MOA is a definate. Reviews i've read say it perfoms as well as a lot of precision bolt guns.

I think i'd rather have this than an armalite or bushmaster (which both cost considerably more. I've actually been dreaming of this rifle with a harris bipod and a sightron 6-24x42.....drool.

They also come in 300 SAUM, which is a wicked round, but i'd rather have 308 for availability.

The things i'd do with money.

Bruce H
March 7, 2004, 10:05 AM
There was an article in a magazine at our local gun shop about this rifle. Shot under an inch with several different factory loads. Shot under a half inch with some. I'll try to get it and post next weekend.

Rob96
March 7, 2004, 07:23 PM
SWAT has an excellent article on it.

Nightcrawler
June 17, 2004, 10:40 PM
How 'bout now? Anybody have one yet?

This is the only AR-family rifle that's tempted me in a long time.

JohnKSa
June 18, 2004, 12:26 AM
Saw one in a shop the other day for about $940 IIRC. It was already sold...

Nando Aqui
June 20, 2004, 02:50 PM
I bought one a couple of months ago – had the gun shop order it from Clark Custom Guns with a Williams set trigger.

I don’t like the plastic magazines that come with it, as sometimes they cause a FTF. DPMS will be having steel versions shortly. Other than for that it is a GREAT RIFLE!

I don’t believe you can buy a comparable semi-auto rifle in .308 for at least twice as much that would come close to the Panther. (BTW, I do not know how the standard triggers are.)
I started using Federal Gold Medal Match 168-gr and had very good results: largest 4-round group was under 1” (other than those that were my fault) and have had several 3-round groups under 1/2" (like 3/8” and 1/4"). Now I am reloading for it, and have tried 168-gr and 175-gr SMK with 42.2 to 42.6 grains of IMR 4064. At 100-yds, the 168-gr may be slightly better; beyond 600 yards the 175 should have the edge.

These are some examples of targets: (All at 100 yards from the Harris bipod with a Sightron SII416x42MD scope.)

http://img1.photobucket.com/albums/0903/bonifacio7/dpms6.jpg


As soon as they have their 300SAUM ready, I’ll get one.

Alex

P0832177
June 20, 2004, 04:57 PM
I shot the DPMS range gun at their home range, Del Tone in St. CLoud. It was equipped with stock trigger and fixed Loopy 6x scope. The gun was shot with surplus ammo. From bags it was a going into a shade over an inch and a quarter. The gun with a good trigger such as a JP or Jewell ought to be a tack driver. Locally FAC has the gun listed at 804.00, but then they never have anything instock!
One local shop sells them for 929.00, and they had two for a long time. Then they are out. It has been said that metal mags are on the docket! And of course the scarce SR 25 mags work with the gun too!

Nando Aqui
February 13, 2006, 01:20 PM
Lunch time and I was just browsing, using Google to search for something else, and came across this thread. A few days ago I posted elsewhere one of the targets I shot three few weeks ago, and thought it should make a good update.

Same rifle, scope, etc., but instead of Federal GMM, I now use my own reloads, and the DPMS Panther likes them better:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0903/bonifacio7/DPMStarget060122d013ts.jpg

Alex

jem375
February 13, 2006, 01:38 PM
damn man, now you have me wanting one...:)

JohnKSa
February 13, 2006, 11:13 PM
WARNING! BEFORE reading farther, please read the disclaimer at the end of the post.

Have they finally got decent mags for this gun or are you still forced to choose between the expensive Armalite mags or the plastic DPMS mags that don't work?

RaetherEnt
February 13, 2006, 11:26 PM
Huh...I have browsed over one of these in Shotgun News lately. Flat top, with forward rails and 6 position collapsable stock for around $1100 new. Me think me likes! :what:

jem375
February 14, 2006, 12:30 AM
WARNING! BEFORE reading farther, please read the disclaimer at the end of the post.

Have they finally got decent mags for this gun or are you still forced to choose between the expensive Armalite mags or the plastic DPMS mags that don't work?yes they do...you get 2 19-round steel mags with each rifle according to the website...

porterdog
February 14, 2006, 11:09 AM
I don't know much about these, so please pardon the newbie question. Are these similar to AR's in that they 'poop where they eat'? I've been wanting a .308 MBR for a while, and one of the main benefits of the FAL is that they run clean and are easy to breakdown for maintenance. The Panther seems to have better accuracy though.

TIA,
Robert

jem375
February 14, 2006, 11:13 AM
You can go to the DPMS website or go over to www.ar15armory.com where they are Industry Partners and ask them any questions you would like to..

Bartholomew Roberts
February 14, 2006, 12:59 PM
I don't know much about these, so please pardon the newbie question. Are these similar to AR's in that they 'poop where they eat'?

Yes, the DPMS .308 is a direct-gas impingement system like the AR15 and like the Army's new SASS rifle.

The only .308 AR I am aware of that does not use direct-gas impingement is the brand new Leitner-Wise system that uses their proprietary gas piston system.

EBRDude
February 14, 2006, 05:00 PM
Had mine close to a year now. I have the AP4, and I love it.
Works great under 400yds, and anything over I use a Savage 12BVSS in .308

Nightcrawler
February 14, 2006, 05:27 PM
Wow. I started this thread almost two years ago. :cool:

Nando Aqui
February 14, 2006, 06:08 PM
Have they finally got decent mags for this gun or are you still forced to choose between the expensive Armalite mags or the plastic DPMS mags that don't work?
As was answered above, yes; they do have good steel magazines now (actually, for about a year.)

I had gotten tired of waiting for the two polymer magazines that I had sent them to trade, plus $20, and bought two of the pricy Knights Armament SR-25 20-rd magazines, which work fine. Of course, shortly after I bought the SR-25s, I received the DPMS new steel mags, 20-rounders. Yes, it is difficult to get that 20th round in, but it is possible.

(Just an observation: I do not know whether Armalite magazines will work; I was under the impression that only the KAC SR-25s did.)

Now I am looking to get their AP4, which is in short supply.
BUT, now that Rock River has announced their line of .308's, maybe this bit of new competition from a reputable manufacturer will speed up the availability of these rifles from DPMS.

Alex

NineseveN
September 19, 2006, 12:56 AM
$40.00 per magazine is a deal breaker IMHO. Just to get the requisite 10 magazines for a primary rifle, we're talking over $320.00 (including the 2 you get with the guns)! :eek:

No way, no how. $25.00 per magazine and I could stand it...$30 would be real tough, but at $40.00 a pop, no thanks. Shame too...if Rock River's LAR-10 works when it comes out, and FAL mags are $3.00-$10.00 a peice...it's a no brainer IMHO.

Garrabo
February 23, 2007, 04:44 PM
I picked up a DPMS .308 today, carbine version. I also have a bushmaster and from the looks and feel of it the DPMS appears to be built better. I will probobly go shoot it in the next day or so.

cobb
July 17, 2007, 11:43 PM
I received the DPMS new steel mags, 20-rounders. Yes, it is difficult to get that 20th round in, but it is possible.


Maybe that is why now they have on their web site that it come with 2 - 19 round magazines. I am seriously looking at ordering a 308B this week.

ProficientRifleman
July 18, 2007, 01:31 AM
Mine is a tack-driver. But...

It has a heavy, fluted, stainless barrel. It tends to give a big shift in zero with a warm barrel. When it cools, it will return to original zero for a shot or two, then jomp back low and left again. At either hot or cold zero it is still a tac driver.

LR-308Hunter
December 29, 2007, 06:14 PM
Own a DPMS 308 love the thing to death i have shot about 3000 rounds through mine, no problems and accuracy is top notch I have puch 168gr HPBT rounds 300 yds with 2'' groups

Will Learn
December 29, 2007, 10:06 PM
I really like mine too(DPMS .308LR). I got it about two months ago and I've got it to shoot MOA consistently with handloads. Just remember to full length size your cases otherwise they will get stuck in the chamber(I learned the hard way).

russcoh
May 18, 2008, 12:22 AM
I've loved mine, have a 308T (16"), has yet to jam, no FTF, has not stovepiped, very accurate and well priced.

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