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AR platform... .308/7.62x51... Questions..?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by KBintheSLC, Oct 22, 2007.

  1. KBintheSLC

    KBintheSLC Well-Known Member

    Hi All,

    I am new to the AR world and have long been considering a basic AR chambered in 5.56. However, lately I have been leaning more towards and AR in 7.62x51.
    The reasoning is that I don't want to own/maintain too many guns, so I would like an AR that I can hunt large game with, and have an effective combat weapon with a range of over 500 meters (I live in the Rocky Mts. so effective range takes priority over dense "urban sweeping" capabilities) So here are a few questions I have for you AR gurus.:confused:

    1-How abundant are quality accessories relative to .223 (aka... mags, and such)? Seems like there are much less options out there for .308.

    2-Does the .308 function as reliably as the .223 within the AR platform?

    3-I'm looking at the RRA Varmint A4 with stainless 26" bbl ($1100-$1200 OTD). Any other good options/suggestions in this price range?

    Thanks a lot.
  2. Kentucky

    Kentucky Well-Known Member

    1. Accessories for the AR in 308 are much harder to find and are much more expensive.

    2. No, at least not without some work.

    3. In the price range you are looking at a DSA FAL would probably be a better buy. Cheaper mags, more reliable, more proven in the 308 caliber.

    That being said, if you want the AR, get the AR! :D
  3. DnPRK

    DnPRK Well-Known Member

    There are pretty much 2 makers of 308 AR-style rifles: Armalite and DPMS. Knights won't sell to civilians, Rock River still doesn't exist, and Patriot Ordnance/Cobb are so small they aren't a blip on the screen.

    For Armalite and DPMS, reliability is good if you use Federal or Black Hills match quality ammo. Don't expect them to gobble trashy foreign military surplus ammo without choking.

    Many aftermarket AR-15 stocks & grips can be made to fit the 308s, but there are only a couple makers of free float rails due to low demand.

    Armalite mags run $45 each while DPMS mags run $33 each. They are not interchangeable and there are no second sources for good reliable mags other than the factory.
  4. cmidkiff

    cmidkiff Well-Known Member

    When started researching an 'evil black rifle' in .308, I found that the available choices were a Springfield M1a, a DSA FAL, an Armalite AR10, and a JLD PTR91. They're all in the same overall price range, and fairly well respected for reliability. I managed to find people who would let me put a few rounds through each, and ruled out the FAL on the firing line, just didn't feel right to me. I ruled out the M1a because I like a pistol grip on my 'evil black rifle', so the choice was down to the AR10 and the PTR91. I went with the one that felt best in my hands, the PTR91. I have had no reason to be disappointed with the choice. It's a very accurate, 100% reliable rifle, with inexpensive magazines, it's easy to clean, easy to field strip, and comfortable to shoot.
  5. aloharover

    aloharover Well-Known Member

    I have only been working with the DPMS .308s so far, but they have been working no problem. Hand loads, commercial ammo, SA and Litheunian(sp) surplus.
    Makes are expensive. Rails are available from a couple of sources and similar priced as the 5.56.
    Mags are pricey.
  6. 24kshooter

    24kshooter Well-Known Member

    From my personal experiance if you buy a rifle in 308 cal. such as the DPMS, Armalite or RR AR10 type you will find: 1. mags are available at under $30 and as it is an AR10 type there are just as many accessories and parts available as an AR15; 2. the DPMS AR10 type is as reliable as the AR15 type with quality ammunition and good mags; 3. the DPMS is in the same price range as the DSA FAL as well as the RR when it becomes more common. The Armalite AR10's are more money but you get a longer warranty and the Armalite name and support. The DPMS LR 308 24" SS would be a good fit for your stated hunting use.
  7. aloharover

    aloharover Well-Known Member

    The RRA is not yet selling. I have some on order. Also it uses FAL mags.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2007
  8. MarshallDodge

    MarshallDodge Well-Known Member

    I have a DPMS LR308 and have been very happy with it. You can pick them up for around $1000.

    The accessories I added to it cost the same as any AR-15 including trigger, Magpul PRS, bipod, pistol grip, scope and rings. Mags will be more $$.

    Here is a picture before the PRS:
  9. mpmarty

    mpmarty Well-Known Member

    Not trying to start a rant or misdirect the thread, but:
    I have a 7.62X51 AK built on a Saiga foundation with an 8X42 POSP scope, bipod, brake, and a whole bunch of twenty round magazines and my total investment is less than seven hundred dollars. Absolutely reliable, shoots into an inch at a hundred yards consistantly with decent ammo and into less than that with 168gr sierra boat tails over 42grs of 4895. Just a suggestion please don't take offense but I just don't see the value in these four figure ARs when you wind up with double the original price invested to get what you want.
  10. KBintheSLC

    KBintheSLC Well-Known Member

    Can you hit anything at 600 yards though? I have heard that the AK platform fails to perform accurately beyond 200-300. Also, does it have a stainless steel bull barrel?... This adds to the cost. Plus it is compatible with a lot of basic AR-15 parts... trigger groups, stocks, etc.

    I understand your point. However, low price is not high on my list of priorities.
  11. jay43

    jay43 Well-Known Member

    Bushmaster makes uppers for the AR in 6.8spc or 450 bushmaster they use the same mags just different followers so all the accesories would cost teh same, plus you can allways buy a 5.56 upper and pop it on the lower and it would be cheaper at the range, with the 308 lower you are stuck with 308 only
  12. mpmarty

    mpmarty Well-Known Member

    Once the projectile is out of the barrel, its source (bolt gun, AR, AK) is immaterial to its flight path. A rifle that shoots into an inch or less at a hundred yards will shoot into two inches at two hundred and so on providing wind is not a consideration. With crosswind, again the launch vehicle is of no concern. A one in ten twist in the 7.62X51 is pretty well standard and will stabilize most bullets up to two hundred grains or so. Again, a minute of angle rifle is a minute of angle rifle and one doesn't "lose" accuracy beyond a certain distance unless either the barrel is too short to gain sufficient velocity or the rifling twist is too slow to stabilize the bullet. In either case, this is a function of the barrel not the method of firing or reloading the action (direct gas, piston, etc.) No, there is no stainless bull barrel on my Saiga. I'm glad, they are too heavy and do not add that much to the performance. The Saiga is chrome lined chamber and bore. I can't tell you what my rifle does at six hundred yards, I've never shot at that specific distance. I have, on a quiet early morning shot five shot groups of under a foot at 1000 yards with benchrest and scope.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2007
  13. KBintheSLC

    KBintheSLC Well-Known Member


    All good points. I guess my biggest issue is that it's an AK. For some strange reason, I have never liked them. I think it is the "feel" of the gun against my frame. They just don't feel as nimble and symbiotically conforming to me as the AR's.

    Maybe it is just a psychosomatic disposition I have developed from my childhood memories of KGB officers patrolling my hometown with crappy looking Soviet-made AK's produced in the late '70's.:cuss: I have never been able to stop associating the gun with all of the other garbage that was designed/manufactured by the socialist regime (bad cars, food, buildings).

    I guess it is just a personal choice. I'm sure it is an excellent gun... many folks swear by them. It's just not my weapon of choice.
  14. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Well-Known Member

    My friend's DPMS .308 rifle is pretty accurate and would make a great hunting rifle. The only thing I don't like about it is that it chokes on surplus ammo which is mostly what I have. My M1A and PTR-91 eat up surplus just fine. However, his reloads seem to work just fine so it depends on what you like.

    I would say that a 6.8 SPC or something similar might also be a great option depending on your ammo situation. Do you reload? As said above, that would allow you to essentially use AR15 accessories.

    My Saiga .223 is pretty accurate as well, but get what you like. It is your rifle.
  15. RangerHAAF

    RangerHAAF Well-Known Member

    I have an AR-10 and it performs flawlessly for me. I shot it this past weekend and everyone on the rangeline was marveling and amazed to actually see one being shot. Apparently, it seems everyone and their brother has an AR-15 but AR-10s are much rarer and when it's shot everyone knows what it is.

    I'm very happy with it as it's more accurate with iron sights than the DSA carbine that I formerly owned with a top line scope attached.
  16. elmerfudd

    elmerfudd Well-Known Member

    My Saiga's are pretty darn accurate as far as AK's go, but they're not MOA rifles and there's no way they could hang with well made free floated AR's. I was able to get a couple of 5 shot groups that were under 2" yesterday at 100 yards with my S308, but that was from a cold barrel and I got tired of waiting for the barrel to cool back down again between shots. Once the barrel heats up mine is a 3 MOA gun with ammo that it likes. My S223 does a little better than that and it takes longer for the barrel to heat up on it.
  17. ROMAK IV

    ROMAK IV Well-Known Member

    The DPMS is cheaper than a DSA/FAL. It doesn't have a forward assist, and from what I have heard, some occassionally jam or FTF, FTE, and such. As for the other choices, I have all of them. A Saiga 308 performs admirably for what it is priced, an M1-A is just a classic. FAL types tend to climb a little, something about the pressure of the rounds in the magazine on the bolt. I also have a FN-49 in 308, shoots quite well once you get the gas adjusted. I also have a MAS 49/56 in 308, it will eat and fire anything I put in it, contrary to conventional wisdom.

    A DPMS should be fine and like already said, is about $1000. Follow the break in procedures and keep clean like any other AR and it should be fine. The LR already comes with a floated barrel and such. I don't know about what other things you would be looking for.
  18. TargetShooter2

    TargetShooter2 Well-Known Member

    Having both a DPMS LR308 & a Saiga 308 i think either one would meets your needs to 500 meters , i wouldnt take the Saiga over that myself !! in a fire fight that Saiga can throw alot of lead it's a AK base rifle , if i wanted to take a target out at farther ranges i would use the DPMS . both of the rifles wear mil dot scopes i added some weight to the butt of the Saiga it weighs in at 13 lbs loaded , the DPMS weighs in at 16 lbs loaded , what ever rifle you go with spend the money and set it up to meet your needs and learn that rifle like the back of your hand your life or loved ones may depend on it one day .



  19. KBintheSLC

    KBintheSLC Well-Known Member

    Cool looking guns ya have there. I think the LR will most likely be the best option for my needs. Thanks for all of the feedback.
  20. cuervo

    cuervo Well-Known Member

    You could hold out a little longer for an H&K 417, but it uses a piston instead of being direct impingement.

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