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Which Assault Rifle in .308

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by camslam, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. camslam

    camslam Well-Known Member

    Hey Gang,

    I'm getting ready to purchase an assault/battle rifle and I had a couple of questions. I realize there will be many varying opinions on this and I have searched many threads looking for information regarding this subject. If possible could those of you with experience owning/shooting a .308 assault rifle please weigh in on the following:

    What .308 assault rifle would you recommend for the following desires:
    1. .308 caliber, semi-automatic, reliable, decent weight for carrying for long periods of time, pistol grip (possible adjustable stock), and ability to mount optics.
    2. Used as a quality all around rifle, for example - accurate out to 300 to 500 yards, could also be used for close quarters battle inside of 100 yards, possibly used for hunting, SHTF scenarios, etc...

    My biggest concern is RELIABILTY in the gun action, magazines, and ability to succesfully shoot different factory or handloads. Also factoring in the weight and accuracy.

    I have looked at the AR-10's, M1A's, FAL's, and HK-91's. I just need some direction from people that have been there done that.

    Any help or information is appreciated. Thanks.
  2. possum

    possum Well-Known Member

    Welcome To THR!
    i would check out the dpms line up they make great .308 models. for the criteria you listed i would say go with the Lr-308AP4 model. i think it would serve you very well in all the area's that you want it to!
    here is a link!
    hope this helps!

    though my favorite battle rifle in .308 and the greatest semi auto rifle ever devised IMHO is the m1a/m14/m21 type. but it will take quite a bit of money to get it set up like you described. the dpms, will be ready to rock with minimal extra cost!
  3. Glockfan.45

    Glockfan.45 member

    The four you listed are all good choices, after that it comes down to a matter of personal preference. I cant stand the ergos of the FAL, or 91s. The M1A was too expensive, and heavy for me so I went with the AR-10. You just need to handle them and see what feels right for you. Having said that with the cost of .308 right now might I recomend something in single shot ;) . Kel-Tec is supposed to be putting out a bullpup rifle in .308 next year. Perhaps you might want to take a look into it.
  4. rbernie

    rbernie Well-Known Member

  5. alucard0822

    alucard0822 Well-Known Member

    My favorite so far is the M1A, smooth and reliable action, accurate and feels good to me. I have tried a saiga, fal and G3, the saiga is oddly balanced and hard to shoot well, the other two are not all that much cheaper than a M1A , but don't feel as solid. I have not shot an AR-10, but I own an AR-15 and like it alot. I am interested in the Kel-tech bullpup, looks like a fun little rifle.
  6. maasenstodt

    maasenstodt Well-Known Member

    My choice in a .308 battle rifle was a Tromix converted 16" barrel Saiga.

    In terms of reliability, as a Kalashnikov design, I tend to doubt that anything surpasses it in terms of construction and the ability to work under abusive conditions. This was a major concern for me and played no small role in my decision.

    Concerning its accuracy, I can't think of a report that I've read which put it at more than 3 MOA with quality ammo, making it accurate enough for a rifleman to hit a man sized target out to 400 yards +. Indeed, most of what I've read puts it somewhere between 1.5-2.5 MOA. Optics are certainly an option, and they don't eliminate the use of irons, either.

    While the 16" Saiga with a full load isn't light, I find the rifle quite handy and reasonably well balanced. It's compact enough to use for indoor sweeps in my small home.

    Price-wise, the 20 round mags from FBMG aren't cheap, but the rifle itself is an absolute bargain. If you're handy and can do the conversion yourself, it's even cheaper.

    The only significant negative that I can think of is the controls. For all of its qualities, the Saiga is still an AK-based design and can't match the ergonomics of a FAL or AR10. That said, I'm not as put off by the AK's controls as some, and the other features (along with its price) were compelling.

    Good luck! :)
  7. JWarren

    JWarren Well-Known Member

    I would recommend a converted Saiga 308-- for the following reasons:

    1. The converted saiga 308 balances as well as any other military style rifle.

    2. It can accept a whole range of ammunition with no hick-ups.

    3. It has a optics mount rail on the receiver already. Optics can be mounted to the rifle, removed, and reattached with no loss of zero.

    4. It is extremely durable, being on a Kalishnakov design.

    5. It is a suprisingly accurate rifle. With a scope attached, I can shoot between 1"-1.5" groups all day long.

    6. 20 Round magazines are available from FBMG.

    I have owned HK-91 (original HK), Century FAL, AK's, AR's (no AR-10 types), and the Saiga 308. By far, I consider the Saiga 308 the one I prefer most.

  8. rangerruck

    rangerruck Well-Known Member

    though I love saigas, and have 3, if you are thinking future armageddon here, you would proly be better off with a fal, hk, or cetme. Why? mag availability, and cost, and worldwide commonality of parts. But I do love Saigas.
  9. TexasRifleman

    TexasRifleman Moderator Emeritus

    The PTR91 SC is interesting to me.


    Short enough to do what you say, reasonable close battle inside 100 yards, but with enough accuracy to reach out to 3-500 yards if needed.

    I'm very close to placing an order for one, have not completely decided if I am OK with that short barrel but I believe it would do for what you are seeking.
  10. Will Fennell

    Will Fennell Well-Known Member


    I'm very pleased with my Kit Gun FAL, that a board member/friend here on THR had built for me.......shoots great, low recoil, easy to mount optics, reliable, cheap mags.....whats not to love:)
  11. HorseSoldier

    HorseSoldier Well-Known Member

    DSA FAL with an M4-type telescoping (and also collapsible) stock, with an 18" or 16.25" barrel is probably the option that best meets everything you want, but it's by no means the least expensive route you can go.
  12. USSR

    USSR Well-Known Member


    A FAL can meet your requirements. I would suggest removing the barrel-mounted bipod if it comes with one, as they weigh a ton, and you don't want to have a bipod directly attached to your barrel anyways. Mounting optics is pretty straight forward and easy with the FAL. DSA makes a strong and rigid mount with a picatinny rail on top. The adjustable gas nut on the FAL makes it perfectly suitable and reliable when using different types of ammo with various pressure levels. While there are platforms that offer slightly better accuracy, you should have no problems inside the 500 yards that you intend to use it.

  13. ALS

    ALS Well-Known Member

    I have a HK91, 2 M1A's, and Armalite AR10 and all are great weapons. Many have recommended the FAL which is also a nice gun for the money.
    Bushmaster also offers a .308 in the AR platform.
  14. cmidkiff

    cmidkiff Well-Known Member

    I was recently looking for the same thing you are looking for. My advice would be to shoot as many variations of the M1a, FAL, HK91, Saiga, and AR10 rifles as you can, and make your decision.

    If price is the primary concern, the Saiga is going to win, hands down. All the others will be in the $1000-$1500 range for a nice example, so pick the one you like best. Ammo will end up costing you more than the rifle anyway, if you shoot it much. On the cost front, you might consider magazine cost, as well.

    I ended up with a PTR91. Love the look and feel of the rifle, shoots very well, reliable, magazines are very inexpensive, and I got a nice example at a decent price.
  15. cmidkiff

    cmidkiff Well-Known Member

    Double post...
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2007
  16. Still 2 Many Choices!?

    Still 2 Many Choices!? Well-Known Member

    Was in the same dilema for a while...

    Chose the DSA FAL with 19" barrel. After all, it was used in the movie ,"Heat":evil: ! Now I just have to wait for it to arrive in another 10-12 weeks:banghead: . Maybe I'll get a Saiga conversion to hold me over till then.

    Still 2 Many Choices!?
  17. funfaler

    funfaler Well-Known Member

    I can't speak to the HK types, only that the ergonomics lend itself less to long range accuracy that the others. Other folks will give you plenty of input on these rifles, I am sure.

    The M1a, if tough to beat for accuracy and reliability. The FAL is a very close second. The AR products, regardless of all the flaming this will produce, are very accurate, but un-reliable for SHTF. They work great if you can "care" for them and feed them expensive ammo, but in a SHTF situation, neither of those are easily available. (Many will come on now and tell you that I am wrong, but that has been my experience, and DPMS specifically says that their 308s will not run surplus, and I have seen first hand they are true). The cost of AR308 mags are very high as well.

    Either the M1a or FAL will suit you very well, just don't expect to buy a $500-600 rifle and have it run flawlessly. You usually get what you pay for it. Don't bother with anything but a Standard M1a or FAL, you can always go back and tart it up, if you want. The Standards will be more accurate than you will be for quite some time.
  18. doubleg

    doubleg Well-Known Member

    AR-10 if you can afford it.
  19. AndyC

    AndyC Well-Known Member

    FAL followed by M1A
  20. amprecon

    amprecon Well-Known Member

    There aren't alot of choices for this class of weapon. The FAL and HK-91 look pretty cool, but in my opinion just are not as balanced as the M1A and not nearly as ergonomical IMO. But those two do take down easier for cleaning. Also though, the bolt and chamber of the M1A is pretty much exposed to quickly see what might be jamming up the works instead of having to yank the carrier cover or buttstock to peek inside. Some might say that the M1A's design leaves it more prone to the entry of debris into the action than the other designs.
    I'm more partial to the classic lines in a rifle and don't really care much for the protruding pistol grip. However, I don't mind it with the AK. I don't have any experience with the AR-15(10) style weapons so I can't comment on those.
    But all said and done, it will come down to what feels best to you and that you feel confident with. My choices were also confined by my finances when I went shopping for one, so I bought a PTR-91 (HK-91 clone) because it was the "cheaper" way to go. I found that I abhorred the ergonomics, trigger and bolt retraction mechanism. I sold it, and put the money towards the rifle that "feels" good to me and I am really satisfied and confident with, the M1A.

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