You are Unregistered, please register to use all of the features of!    
Firearm & Gun Forum - > Long Guns > Auto & Semi-Auto Discussion > AR-15 Discussion >

"BEST" AR, "BEST" Upgrades....

Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-19-2008, 10:09 AM   #1
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 129
Default "BEST" AR, "BEST" Upgrades....

I have been quietly reading a bunch of the threads here, and I'm seeing some 'Stinkin' Thinkin' going on...

First off,
There are only two or three people that are forcing their opinions and view points down everyone's throats.
That's a bad thing when someone is a 'Self Appointed Internet God'...

No one here is addressing the three primary rules,

All I see is advertisements for expensive parts you normally don't need and won't use.

The 'BEST' AR (or any firearm for that matter...)


No sense in having one of the 'Tacti-Cool' AR's with all the mounting surfaces covered in 'Gadgets' if it's at home under the bed because the batteries are always dead or it's too heavy, or it's not 'Legal' in your area because you have this or that installed, ect. ect. ect.

Guys knock the first generation 'Soda Straw' barrels,
They knock the early style CAR shoulder stocks,
They knock early grab handles with the first generation sights,
They knock the 10 or 20 round mags...

(drum roll please...)
It's all BS.

I can tell you I have the very light duty CAR stocks, soda straw 16" barrel and first gen iron sights...
It's very light and compact so I actually CARRY IT with me...
And the BEST AR is the one you have when you need it!


If you have the high dollar drum mag and it makes your rifle 'Illegal' in your area, TAKE IT OFF..

If you have a bayonet/bayonet lug and that makes your rifle illegal... TAKE IT OFF..

If folding stocks or collapsible stocks are illegal in your area.... TAKE IT OFF.

If 16 barrels are illegal, get an 18" or 20" or what ever is legal!
This isn't rocket science!
And your rifle does you NO GOOD AT ALL if it's in storage in the closet at home!

Now, for you guys that must 'Accessorize'.
(Yes, I just said it! You have been 'Outed'...)


For the rest of you,

In 16 Years as a firearms/small arms instructor in the military, and over 25 years as a civilian NRA certified instructor, I've NEVER seen any of the accessories dealers tell you the truth, and as the internet grew, I started seeing self appointed 'Experts' take over the forums and just parrot the crap the retailers have been spreading for so long....


You need to learn to use basic, fixed iron sights.
You need to learn to use the firearm safely and efficiently.
You need to learn to use the firearm in all conditions you might encounter with it and plan for every foreseeable contingency.
You need to LEARN what the fire arm WILL, and WON'T do.

An Army scout and part time buffalo hunter named Billy Dixon knocked an Indian off his horse at over 7/8 mile away with a .50-70 black powder rifle with open sights!

Alvan York killed over 35 Germans in one day during WWI with a .30-06 Springfield rifle and all of his shots were over 600 yards. May were head shots, with fixed open sights!

I watched a guy I've seen hit the bull regularly at 1,000 yard matches pass on a 400 yard shot hunting last year.
When I asked 'Why', he said he wasn't sure of his sights and didn't want to cripple the animal.
That guy knows how to shoot 1,000 yards, but also has the good sense to know when NOT to shoot.

Learn How To Use The Iron Sights, Work On Your Shooting, & Learn The Capabilities Of The Firearm...


If you only shoot 100 yards and less, you DO NOT need a $1,000 set of optics!

If you only get your rifle out once or twice a year,
You don't need a bull barrel, premium ammo or expensive optics, since you can't hit anything anyway.

Accurate shooting takes PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, and all the expensive 'Toys' in the world aren't going to make up for poor stance, unbraced shooting positions, and lack of trigger control!

If the only thing you use your rifle for is hanging 'Accessories' on to show off/impress your friends, you probably shouldn't own a firearm...

If, in fact, you regularly target shoot (at LEAST once a month), and you know the difference between a 'Bench Trigger' a 'Field Trigger' and a 'Military Trigger' then you might have a need for a more accurate barrel and a slicked up trigger.

If your 'Zero' point is 200 yards or more, then you might have a need for some serious optics.

If your 'Average' shot is farther than 400 yards, then you might have a need for 'Premium' ammo.

No one I know (military not withstanding) NEEDS a $700 optic with 1x magnification... That includes the police...
So if you have an 'Aim Point' on your AR, don't be surprised if I laugh at you...
Same for lights, lasers, front pistol grips, extra mounting rails, bayonets, battery holders, disco balls, fuzzy dice or pink ribbons...

Learn the basics, Balance, Bracing, Breathing, Sight Picture, Trigger Control & Follow Through.
Nothing else matters, and nothing else can help you if you can't do the basics...

Marksmanship IS NOT loading up on the latest fad sight, optic, light or mag.

Marksmanship IS NOT making one good shot every once in a while.

Marksmanship IS NOT loading up high capacity magazines and drenching the range in hopes you will hit a target, any target if you waste enough ammo...

Marksmanship IS being able to repeat your shots time after time after time in all weather conditions.

Marksmanship IS KNOWING IN YOUR SOUL you can blow the heart out of that Mule deer at 500 yards, because you have PRACTICED this very shot at this very angle with these very bullets in this very rifle in these very same weather conditions...
Not thinking you can *MAYBE* hit the deer at 500 yards and *MAYBE* you will get lucky and it will die before it gets away...

If you want to load up the 30 round mags or the 75 or 100 round drums and waste ammo, that's perfectly fine with me.
Just don't mistake it for any form of 'Marksmanship',
Or sign of any ability to control the firearm,
Or ability to hit any given target on demand...

I ground hog hunted and prairie dog hunted with an AR-15 and shot an AR-10 in competition 35 years ago.
Don't think that every single time I took that black rifle out of it's case, people didn't snicker and sometimes outright laugh...

Don't think I didn't take a butt load of abuse when I cleaned the rifles at the lodge before we went prairie dog hunting...

By the end of the first day the jokes and snickering had stopped,
And usually by the end of the second day, the 'Old Timers' were asking questions and wanting to get a closer look, maybe squeeze off a few rounds...

And in case you all aren't familiar with firearms from that era, some guys were using .22 WMR & .218 Bee rounds, while others were using .220 SWIFT and 6MM Mag. to hunt with!

No one, and I mean absolutely NO ONE used an auto loader for the first two years I went west to prairie dog hunt.
On the third year, one guy had a Ruger Mini 14, and that was the only other auto loader I saw for may years...

*IF* you put in the hours at the gun range to learn proper procedures,
*IF* you have a need, like hunting or long range targets, for a better barrel and some 'Slicking Up' of the action and trigger, then I can't fault you for it.
That is just going back to the three basic rules...

*IF* you think a optic of any kind is going to make you a better 'Shooter', you are SADLY MISTAKEN!

*IF* you think there is any need in the world for a gob of accessories on any AR, again, you are SADLY MISTAKEN!

*IF* you think that owning an AR, With or Without a Gob of 'Paste On' accessories will make you more of a man or braver, then you are not only Sadly Mistaken, you need serious and intensive treatment from a mental health professional!
AR Hammer is offline  

Join Today - It's Free!

Are you a firearms enthusiast? Then we hope you will join the community. You will gain access to post, create threads, private message, upload images, join groups and more.

Firearms Talk is owned and operated by fellow firearms enthusiasts. We strive to offer a non-commercial community to learn and share information.

Join Today! - Click Here

Old 08-19-2008, 03:08 PM   #2
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: I see you, and you will not know when I will strike
Posts: 24,301
Liked 3516 Times on 1621 Posts
Likes Given: 3590


Well, it would appear some of this, if not all of it, is directed at me, so I guess I should respond. I have fielded all the questions recently concerning AR's based on experience and familiarity of the products. At the time I joined, there were several AR threads that had been started, but with no conclusive answers, and left open. I have tried to close some of those with answers based on build experience.

I have tried to end some of the common mythos that you need to spend $1500 to get a good AR platform. I have tried to point out several sources of do it yourself bargains for those interested in building an AR and not breaking the bank.

I have also been asked about add-ons, and I have included reponses, along with some alternatives, that would be useful for the person asking the questions.

Frequently I have tried to cop to the fact when I am not familiar with the products in question, but offer what I have seen in the shop where I hang out, or an opinion from SHOT based on handling and hands on time.

Apparently I have offended you - though I am not sure how really. I can't recall telling anyone to purchase a mall ninja gun, nor have I advocated refinancing the house to attain a superior weapon system.

I would take difference with your beliefs on triggers, and your beliefs on optics, but they are yours and you are welcome to them.

Generally we don't deal with a "buy it and store it" clientele, so I am willing to give the benefit of the doubt to the folks that have joined up here with the intent of getting some information on a purchase. I don't recall holding a gun to anyone's head and making them purchase a product I recommended.

First off,
There are only two or three people that are forcing their opinions and view points down everyone's throats.
That's a bad thing when someone is a 'Self Appointed Internet God'...
Well, I read back through like 50 of my AR posts and am still comfortable with the Q & A that was expressed. If I have upset you - well, sorry bro....

Perhaps you can go through and respond to some of the open threads with facts from your time with the weapon and give the folks some other options...

Dillinger is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 04:38 PM   #3
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 48
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Personally, I am a fan of Dillinger, the man has a wealth of information on firearms related subjects- the very reason that I signed up here- to gather information.
Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.
-Ronald Reagan
THE_REPUBLICAN is offline  
AsSeenOnTV Likes This 
Old 08-19-2008, 06:14 PM   #4
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
RL357Mag's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Albany,New York
Posts: 3,251
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts


This IS America, and people have a right to spend (or waste) their money on whatever they see fit. That being said, I never hunted with a semi-auto before, but after two AR purchases this past year, I will definately be hunting with both this year - the .223 for small game and the .308 for large game. It is a weapons platform that I am very familiar with. I don't much give a crap what anyone thinks of me using an AR to hunt. Any weapon that is good enough to hunt people with, is good enough to hunt game with. I don't rely on iron sights as much as I used to because since last year my eyesight has declined considerably to the point where I need either peep sights or scopes to make an accurate shot past 100 yds. I don't believe you need to learn German or spend $500-1000 to buy a reliable scope either. About the only thing I object to is people who make ridiculous claims and comparisons between the accuracy of the AK system and the accuracy of the AR system. IMO it's fairly easy to tell the difference between someone with experience and someone that's full of sh!t...
Guns Have Only Two Enemies-Rust and Politicians
"The United States Constitution (c) 1791 - All Rights Reserved"
If Guns Kill, Do Pencils Mis-spell Words?
Pain is Weakness Leaving the Body - USMC
"Qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum"

Last edited by RL357Mag; 08-19-2008 at 09:54 PM.
RL357Mag is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 06:47 PM   #5
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
matt g's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 3,885
Liked 12 Times on 9 Posts


1. You're complaining about others voicing their opinions.
2. You use what had to be close to an hour of time to voice yours by bad mouthing others.

3. If it's not your rifle, why do you care?
4. Do you have a car? Does it have any custom parts on it?

Let's keep this thread civil and not bash the OP or anyone else, or it will be closed.
"'Did you ever wonder why we had to run for shelter when the promise of a brave new world unfurled beneath a clear blue sky? "
Roger Waters

Vote freedom, join the Libertarian Party.
matt g is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 07:31 PM   #6
Lifetime Supporting Member
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
robocop10mm's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Austin,Texas, by God!!
Posts: 11,395
Liked 4138 Times on 2111 Posts
Likes Given: 523


I agree that many people accessorize their AR's (and AK's and SKS's and 870's etc) to the nth degree. If you want to spend a grand on a rifle and then spend $2K on accessories, more power to you.

I agree the best AR is the one you have when you need it. I have a Colt Gov't Carbine that I call my American Express (don't leave home with out it). I have a small handful of modifications done to suit my purpose (Patrol Rifle). I shoot regularly (about 2500 rds to date) and am deadly accurate with it out to 200. For precision I have a 20" HBAR that will shoot sub minute groups all day. It is not a rifle that I would use to clear a house or hump all day but it has its place in the arsenal.

I will not begrudge a man's desire to part company with his hard earned dollars, but some of it is just silly IMHO.
robocop10mm is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 07:51 PM   #7
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Rochester, NY
Posts: 6,973
Liked 1307 Times on 665 Posts
Likes Given: 151


The only add-on for my AR I got is a Bushnell holosight, which I got for a song, and it has helped my grouping past 100 yards a lot. For me, it was a useful addition. YMMV. (Probably, a narrower or tapered front post sight would have been just as useful.)

AR Hammer's point that unless you really know how to use your rifle, add-ons aren't going to help is a true statement. But what others choose to spend their money on is no business of mine, so if they ask about rails, scopes, stocks, grips or other things, that's cool.
bkt is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 08:06 PM   #8
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
JWIII's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 108

I don’t think it’s fair to the forum that you take out your problems on the group as whole… If you have an issue with one or a few members, then direct it towards them.

Or, if this rant is a reflection of something that occurred outside the forum; just say so. Start out by saying “guess what happened to me today?, etc…” And, then let your frustration out.

Why now? You said you have been quietly reading some threads; why not voice your opinion at the appropriate time in some of the other threads?
I have not read every thread in the forum, but I did not read anything about anyone “knocking” anything/anyone; until now.

This may also be a case of “Old School” versus “New School?” But, you have to take the best of both worlds. Both sides have valid points.

Tacti-COOL can also be Practi-COOL. There is nothing wrong with having a light and laser. I would assume it’s better to be over equipped than under equipped? My AR weighs 10.2lbs with a loaded 30 rd magazine; I can’t speak for you, but that’s no where near too heavy or unmanageable for me.

However I do agree with what you said about training and knowing your firearm. Practice always makes perfect.

You have some valid points; I just wish you would have approached things differently.

Mossberd 500...

Beretta 96...

Smith & Wesson M&P15T...
JWIII is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 08:33 PM   #9
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
JPBeck's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 138

I'm one of those guys that has a 1K optic on my AR-- The ACOG is an issued piece of "KIT" and I use it in Three Gun all the time (targets way closer than 400 yards--lol). I guess I'm a stroke in your eyes. All well... I guess I'll have live with the fact that I'll be loosing 5 seconds of sleep over it tonight (since your the all knowing AR guru lol).

"BEST" AR, "BEST" Upgrades.... - AR-15 Discussion

Ohhh yea, I also have a Redi-Mag and a CAR stock installed-- I bet that really chaps your hide. Sorry.
"Trust in God, but keep your powder dry."

Last edited by JPBeck; 08-19-2008 at 09:10 PM.
JPBeck is offline  
Old 08-19-2008, 10:01 PM   #10
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
RL357Mag's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Albany,New York
Posts: 3,251
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts


To JP : Who makes that AR?
Guns Have Only Two Enemies-Rust and Politicians
"The United States Constitution (c) 1791 - All Rights Reserved"
If Guns Kill, Do Pencils Mis-spell Words?
Pain is Weakness Leaving the Body - USMC
"Qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum"
RL357Mag is offline  
Closed Thread

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Firearms Forum Replies Last Post
"Do "Gun-Free" Zones Encourage School Shootings?" cnorman18 The Club House 26 04-17-2012 09:57 PM
New youtube video I posted of "slow cycle" test of my Hi-Point SGT-MILLER General Handgun Discussion 7 05-19-2009 03:51 PM
No to HR 1022, "Assault Weapons Ban"" right winger Politics, Religion and Controversy 0 10-27-2008 01:54 AM
Witloe Remington 1858 New Model Army "Lee" & "Grant" bprevolver Blackpowder & Musket 0 09-25-2008 11:11 PM