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AR15: Purchasing a new rifle, but which and why?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by meanmrmustard, Oct 6, 2012.


Which to buy?

Poll closed Nov 5, 2012.
  1. Del Ton Dissipator

    5 vote(s)
  2. Sig M400

    16 vote(s)
  3. PSA PA-15CR

    10 vote(s)
  4. S&W M&P Sport...again!

    26 vote(s)
  5. A PSA middy upper, BCM BCG, lower to be named "franken rifle"

    34 vote(s)
  1. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    I'm going to be getting a new AR in the neighborhood of early to mid December. I'm trying to keep it at a strict budget, in the area of $1K. This isn't my first rodeo, I've owned too many ARs, but I'm wanting to get another purely for a HD/farm rifle. This bugger won't likely see high round counts, not that it matters.

    I've made a poll. Vote, state your case, and I'd like purely objective reasoning as to why I should choose one over another. Thanks in advance.
  2. henschman

    henschman Well-Known Member

    I don't see the poll.

    For a lower, I would go with the cheapest stripped lower you can find... brand doesn't matter. There are Surplus Ammo & Arms lowers for $80 online (plus shipping and FFL fee), or at least around here you can find them at a LGS for around $100 or not too much more.

    For the upper, I would go with PSA because they have great prices, and meet or exceed the mil specs on everything. While that isn't strictly necessary, especially since you said it isn't going to see a high round count, the extra quality assurance is a good thing. HD is a pretty serious role, after all. Their chrome lined barrels in particular are very nice, being made by FN.

    I would go with one of their "fall madness" uppers while they're on sale. I would go with a 16" barrel for your stated role, since you mentioned home defense, and you didn't mention a need for any longer range work. I would go with a mid-length gas system since they have the optimal dwell time for a 16" barrel, give you a little more sight radius and handguard length, and are easier on recoil and on the internal parts. For barrel profile, I would go with the lightest you can get, for ease of handling in tight quarters and for being nice to carry around the farm. I would prefer the pencil profile, but as of right now it looks like they aren't in stock. The mid-length light profile premium madness looks nice too, and is a great price at $279.99. I actually just ordered one of those myself for my Dad's AR build.

    Get one of their discounted premium classic lower build kits to finish off the lower, one of their M-16 BCGs, and their discounted mil spec charging handles, and a Magpul MBUS rear sight and you are in business. Spend the rest of your budget on a good red dot sight, a flashlight + mount, and maybe some different handguards to mount the light on.
  3. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    The poll is up. Mid length is my goal, in any case. The one I want from PSA (if I go that route) is $279, stripped minus BCG and charging handle. If I build the frankengun, I'm going FA BCG by BCM.

    I don't do flashlights on my rifles, and I'm loyal to the TRS-25 on ARs.

    Thanks for your information.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2012
  4. Inebriated

    Inebriated Well-Known Member

    I'm no AR expert, but it's my understanding that for the $1k market, the Colt 6920 is about as good as it gets for a new rifle.

  5. Warp

    Warp Well-Known Member

    He has something against Colt and is not considering them, for some reason.

    I voted for the only option with parts from what I consider to be a Top Tier manufacturer. (PSA mid with BCM BCG)

    Get the Del Ton off the list/poll.

    If you get a Smith and Wesson, get the M&P, maybe even the MOE edition. Not the sport. (since you list HD as a use, you cut fewer corners vs the Sport)
  6. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    We've had the Colt discussion.

    I trust Sports, no reason not too. But, I'd be lying if I said I didn't want something different.

    What's wrong with Del Ton? Lots of good reviews from those who own one!

    Lastly, what lower should I purchase if I piece a rifle together. I'd buy that locally, and I'm surrounded by gun shops.
  7. Inebriated

    Inebriated Well-Known Member

    Drinking that hateraid? lol

    I've heard no complaints about DT, though. Handled a few at the store when I was about to get one, and they were nice little rifles from what I can tell.
  8. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    Hateraid? Haven't heard that one in years! I don't hate Colt rifles, I don't like how Colt conducts business. I'm sure that seems petty, but it is what it is.

    Yeah, I read a lot of good things about DT. Actually, nothing negative thus far.
  9. Quentin

    Quentin Well-Known Member

    I have to agree with everything Henschman said. I ordered a PSA 16" midlength upper during their Labor Day madness sale and they have another sale now. $280 for that good of an upper really is madness! If their $140 milspec BCG is in stock it should be fine, they do have an AR-15 BCG for about $10 less but I'd go with their M16 version instead. You'd save $20 + $10 shipping over BCM and it should be as good. (I did go with BCM's BCG because the PSA was out of stock.) The PSA charging handle is a good deal at only $15 or you could splurge for a BCM Gunfighter Mod 4 (I have two). The M4 handguards are pretty fat and a MOE handguard is a good upgrade.

    The MBUS2 rear sight is indestructable and weighs only 1.3 oz I believe. I also use the 5.9 oz Bushnell TRS-25 (have two) and they work fine. Daniel Defense used to put them on a value M4 package sold to law enforcement!

    If the pencil barrel is out of stock (like it was when I ordered) their midlength light profile premium madness government profile barrel only weighs a couple ounces more than my BCM pencil. (That surprised me since I expected more like 4-5 oz.) I have a picture of that upper naked in another thread if you want to see under the handguards.

    As far as the stripped lower, I'd buy that locally and look at as much inventory nearby as you have time. Any 7075-T6 lower should be fine but I tend to kick in a little more to get a rollmark I like. I figure an extra $25-50 is a drop in the bucket considering the price of entire rifle, say $1000, so why not get something you're proud of! I just couldn't put a DPMS or BM rollmark on one of my builds but of course it shouldn't make a bit of difference. Locally I've bought S&W M&P-15, Valkyrie, Charles Daly and ArmaLite lowers. The first three are great and have flared magwells, the ArmaLite was rougher cosmetically but no functional issues (but I wish the magwell was flared better). I did order a Quentin Defense US Army Edition billet lower which is amazing but never built it up.

    As Henschman said the PSA lower build kits are great, all milspec. The BCM receiver extension is a bit smoother but both are 7075 alloy and proper dimensions so you might as well save $25-35 here. Get their H-buffer, it works fine with midlength gas. And BTW he's right on the advantages of a 16" middy, it has the same dwell time as the 14.5" M4 and 20" M16 (about 7" from gas port to muzzle).
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  10. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    ^thanks for chiming in! I've got my mind set on the BCM BCG, if I piece a rifle together.

    Spikes has a bunch of custom lowers, nifty roll marks and such.
  11. Quentin

    Quentin Well-Known Member

    Spikes lowers have a lot of fans. No doubt they're good but I've never seen one first hand.
  12. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    Just looked. Back ordered like a mofo.
  13. wally

    wally Well-Known Member

    S&W for the warranty and customer support.
  14. LeonCarr

    LeonCarr Well-Known Member

    I have a BCM upper with a BCM BCG on a PSA lower. Everything that is supposed to be staked is staked, everything that is supposed to be torqued is torqued, and everything that is supposed to be HP/MPI is HP/MPI.

    Lots of rounds through it with no problems at all.

    Just my .02,
  15. meanmrmustard

    meanmrmustard Well-Known Member

    I do enjoy their service. They're very friendly, helpful, and knowledgable.

    If I could muster the strength to turn the other cheek, I'd get another 6920.
  16. Quentin

    Quentin Well-Known Member

    Y'know one other thing I really like about my S&W lower, it proudly says Made In USA (in addition to city/state). None of my other lowers have that.

    One thing odd about it, the S&W lower doesn't have the caliber marked. And when I originally had an ArmaLite upper on it I actually had a rifle where the caliber wasn't marked anywhere! Now it has a Daniel Defense upper which is marked 5.56.
  17. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    Buy a BCM middy upper decked out to suit your taste/needs, and install it on the lower of your choice, or just buy the Sport and use the savings from the $1000 bill to buy ammo.
  18. Warp

    Warp Well-Known Member

    I know a guy, on another forum, who put a BCM upper on a lower of his choice. It failed first time out. Hammer spring.
  19. Fremmer

    Fremmer Well-Known Member

    You know you like the s&w sport, it'll be less expensive, and it'll do what you want it for really well.
  20. 68wj

    68wj Well-Known Member

    Not sure I would look at a gutted upper. Carriers are starting to be hard to come by as parts.

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