Hey all, after poking my head around a bunch of forums this one seems to provide the most civilized discussions that don't always spiral into talks about which gun you want in your bug out vehicle ready to shoot zombie liberals from 500 yards out when the unavoidable collapse of this government happens. So anyway I recently purchased my first gun, a Glock19. It was meant to be my "in a safe by the night stand" gun while still being fun and reliable at the range. However while at the range with my friends they are always letting me test out their basic AR-15s, AK pistol and 9mm carbines.....horrible influence lol. So of course I caught the black rifle bug. Now I want one of my own, and while I fully expect that I will one day end up with both (don't tell my wife) I can't decide which to get first. I am hoping that I can avoid the 7.62 vs .223 religious debate if I explain what I expect to do, and the shooting style I enjoy. Rifle experience/opinion: 30-06 semi-auto traditional hunting look rifle (unsure brand/model): Fun enough though the recoil was enough to ensure I don't put 100 rounds through it while out. Less "fun factor" for me and I didn't like the grip. I like pistol grips better. 2 very similar built 16'' AR's. They both looked like your average entry level AR. One with red dot and one with just iron sites. Had a blast shooting both and for first time shooting them was pretty accurate. AK pistol: ok not a rifle but only experience with AK platform. Emptying a high cap mag as fast as I could pull the trigger left me with a huge grin, especially with as loud as it was and all the muzzle flash. But after that initial impression is quickly got lackluster to me. Wasn't as accurate (for me) as the AR's and the ergonomics just didn't do it for me. However this was a pistol, not a rifle AK so i don't want to rule it out. 9mm High Point Carbine: dirt cheap with looks to match but fun as heck to shoot, very accurate and shares ammo with my Glock. At around $250 this was going to be my "fun gun", but that I starting seeing some AK's for just a "little" more, and could build an AR for yet a "littl"e more than that....you get the idea lol. 20 gauge shotgun: what can i say, it made big holes and had the shotgun racking sound, of course it was fun. Shooting Style: Pray and spray with the AK pistol was a fun way to kill a box of ammo in 5 seconds, but honestly not what I expect to do all the time...especially since i hit the dirt more than the target. I did however have the time of my life when we set up a small target and took turns shooting one controlled shot at a time to see who could hit it first. Before you jump to a bolt action suggestion, I also have a lot of fun trying to keep tight groups with a double or triple tap. Also keep in mind all my experience has been at 50 yards or less, though I would love to find an outdoor range where I can try 100+ yards. I say the winner here is a tie between the 9mm carbine and the AR. Plans for the gun: Shooting paper and other misc targets. Highly doubtful I will ever go hunting, and as you guessed from my opening paragraph I don't think I have to worry about the government collapsing in my life time and need this to protect my home and family. I will grab my Glock before any rifle in the rare chance I experience a home break in. I'd say this is a tie, all can shoot paper. This is where I hope your longer term experience/opinions can help. Cost: Hard to nail this down. I'd love to say under/around $600, but I know how I am and I tend to let cost rise for higher end components. So I will say I want the best bang for my buck. Also I am willing to build it myself, but prefer the upper pre-built since most posts I read said that is a little harder for a new builder to do properly. Winner is the 9mm carbine, then the AK, then the AR Looks: Much less important technically speaking, but I do prefer the look of the AR platform over the traditional AK with wood accents look. I have seen some nice all black AK based guns, and would be plenty happy with them, but the AR looks has a small place in my heart. Winner is AR, then AK (in all black), then the carbine. Any help/opinions would be greatly appreciated.