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In the mood for an upgraded AR 15

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by macadore, Oct 21, 2020.

  1. macadore

    macadore Member

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    I have a very old AR 15 [email protected] with the attached carry handle, a collapsible stock and a round handguard. It works well and has never let me down. However, I'm in the mood to upgrade. Can someone tell me about the new ventilated handguards. Do they get too hot to hold if you don't wear gloves? What other advice can you give me?

    Thanks.
     
  2. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    The aluminum handguards don't get too hot. At least I've never noticed it. If you're doing multiple mag dumps as fast as possible for an extended time, it's possible I'd guess.

    If it was my carbine with the carry handle upper reciever, I'd keep that upper the way it is for iron sighted plinking. I'd buy a new upper, they're not too costly. Just watch PSA's website and snag one on sale.
     
  3. Phantom 309

    Phantom 309 Member

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    I agree with @gotboostvr. I suppose if you simply want to add a free float handguard and leave it at that then it would be economical to do so. But if you want that plus a flat top receiver and whatnot then you will likely be money ahead to buy a complete upper in the style that you like. Leave that nice shooter that you already have alone and swap the uppers out as you see fit. FWIW I have been very happy with my PSA "freedom rifle kit" upper, although I've only had the chance to shoot it at 50 yards so far I obtained 5 shot groups just under 5/8" with an unmagnified eotech 512.
     
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  4. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    I have a '90's era Colt H-bar, an -A2 style with fixed carry handle. For many years I considered swapping the upper, floating the barrel, and other stuffs... but decided in the end that it shot well enough to not mess with it (this outside the value of a gen-u-wine Colt for resale, or it's 'pre-ban' value in some states.) It's almost as inexpensive to just order or build a complete upper and swap them between your lower receiver (assuming it's not something weird like my 'big pin' Colt lower.)

    As far as barrel heat... the barrel profile has a lot to do with it, too. Sustained fire through the heavy barrel of my Colt, with it's aluminum insert handguards, is never a problem. I had a RRA lightweight upper built, with a light 16" barrel... and that thing gets HOT. Fast. We're talking 100 rounds and you have to wear a glove to hold the thing. I have a Magpul forearm, and I don't think it deflects heat like the Colt USGI-style ones do, and with a free-float forearm you have no heat deflectors, period.
     
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  5. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    Well, this is possibly the worst possible time to be looking for complete rifles. That is what it is.
    So, the above recommendations to get a complete upper are probably far easier to accomplish.

    Now, there's muddy water in the M-Lok versus Keymod fore ends; even some debate on whether a person needs all those rails at all.

    The solid tube free-float fore ends seem to cope with heat well enough, even with only having the one open end. The ventilated hand guards do not, as noted above, get too warm, not with the open ventilation area.
    The multi-rail ones can resemble a cheese grater, though.

    Now, while looking at uppers, it might behoove to look at lowers, just separately. Availability on those is all over the place.
     
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  6. wiscoaster

    wiscoaster Member

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    Whatever you do, keep what you have. Don't even think of doing a trade. Get in the mood for ADDING another AR.
     
  7. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Buy an upper. Then buy a lower later on after the pandemic
     
  8. wiscoaster

    wiscoaster Member

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    If OP wants to pm me I can direct OP to a couple local gun stores that had between them a dozen or more complete AR-15 rifles.
     
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  9. macadore

    macadore Member

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    Thanks for all the help. It was my intention to buy or build a new one. My wife's deadly with the one I have and it stays in her bedroom. I have to sleep with a CPAP which is real noisy so I sleep in another room. I'm going to buy a pistol lower and a 10.5 inch upper with the rails. I'll probably get a pair of gloves too. Thanks again.
     
  10. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    I'm not very Tacticool... I use a pair of old motocross gloves I have, they have double palms (for the heat) but thin fingers (so you can still manipulate things like mag changes and such.)
     
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  11. DerMerchant

    DerMerchant Member

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    Make sure you're ready to blow out your ears with that short barrel.
     
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  12. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    In San Antonio?
    Complete ARs are thin on the ground here in Texas. My LGS has five; one .300BO, and the rest are 6.8s--and they have ammo for neither. Three months ago they had three dozen, mostly in 5.56--times change.
    A couple of the bigger venues have 5.56 ARs, but they are most of a grand each.
    There's a guy over in White Settlement (west of Fort Worth) who does nothing but uppers--he's out of everything shorter than 18".
    It's slim pickings here in Texas.
    Things might be better in WI, if so, then I'm glad. People deserve some normality in this some-what wacky time.
     
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  13. David Hoback

    David Hoback Member

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    If you are set on going with a short 10.9” barrel, you may want to make it a CQB in 300AAC. A barrel that short completely neuteres 5.56/223 round. I went through my SBR stage a long time ago...LONG before the super sweet “braces” became a thing. But then I learned ballistics. Haven’t built one below 16” since. But the 300AAC is already a big, heavy, slow bullet. Perfect for a Sub-Gun.
     
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  14. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    I find my supersonic 110s at 2360FPS to be equally efficient from a ten inch barrel, losing less than 50 FPS compared to some sixteen inch barrel data.
     
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  15. Drifter27

    Drifter27 Member

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    Depending on what distance its used at a 10.3" barrel can be the perfect barrel length while still delivering effective results. I have a 10.3" barrel on an ar pistol and everything I've read points to bullets opening or tumbling as expected inside the range I would use it at. Every tool has a purpose
     
  16. macadore

    macadore Member

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    Thanks. The primary purpose will be indoor home defense. The max range will be 45 ft. or less. I have a Vepr 7.62x54r for distance work.
     
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  17. army_eod

    army_eod Member

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    Keep what you have. I have two of the A1 guns.
     
  18. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Are you trying to make it better or just different?
     
  19. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    300blk, owing to realitively high pressure, low case capacity, and fast burning powders typically used for magnum handgun cartridges, is exceptionally efficient in short barrels. Love it or hate it, it's really well designed for its purpose.
     
  20. macadore

    macadore Member

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    Lighter with built in rails for modifications.
     
  21. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Once you have a quad rail with covers, you will likely be heavier than A2 rifle length handguards even before you load them up with stuff. A pencil barrel will remove the weight though.
     
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  22. IdaD

    IdaD Member

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    Buy a lower receiver when you can find one so you have it, and then I'd echo the advice to watch PSA for deals. You can build a nicer rifle than you can buy for the same money, and you can get what you want instead of buying a complete rifle and then swapping parts to make it what you want. The one I built this fall has a lightweight MLOK handguard and I like it a lot. Looks and feels good, the barrel is free floated and it isn't a big clunky quadrail.
     
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  23. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    Depending on what you intend to do, the standard delta ring forearms work, still. I just drill holes in them or use the slots in some forearms to mount what I want. After handling one of those quad-rail AR's... and I understand they have their place... I wanted nothing to do with them.

    z3W3CDul.jpg
     
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  24. David Hoback

    David Hoback Member

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    I don’t believe many use “quad” rails anymore. I’m fond of the hybrids...MLok & skeletonized venting.

    I’m using an ADE 12”. Made in the USA, and of 7075-T6 billet at that! Also uses a Nitrided steel barrel nut. Best thing, it’s only $75! Learning a few things, allows one to find high quality at a fraction of the price of big names.

    CA2-D0-A44-DC7-A-4839-B560-C93-D382879-BE.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2020
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  25. Skylerbone

    Skylerbone Member

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    My advice would be to take special care when choosing the rail. A cheap rail can add significant weight to what should be a lighter build. Combined with a pencil or LW barrel you’ll reap the benefits of mobility in a shortened package. I own both 7.5” and 10.5” ARs, each with a specific defensive purpose and both are well suited IMO to their role.



    7EBB0E36-90DA-481C-B1F0-5233FB919F70.jpeg


    Your timing leaves much to be desired given current prices and availability so you may wish to piecemeal your project beginning with a stripped lower as previously mentioned.

    Might I also suggest inquiring with your insurance carrier about a newer cpap machine. They are both smaller and quieter than older models, which could in turn allow you and the Mrs to again share a space. https://www.easybreathe.com/AirSense-10-Autoset-with-HumidAir-and-ClimateLineAir-Tube-p4361.html It’s money well spent if you need it.
     
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