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dallee 06-12-2011 03:29 PM

New to AR's want to purchase, need help
Never owned an AR type gun but want to get one.

It's going to have to be a budget type AR as I've got about $750 - $800 to put into one.

Had kind of narrowed it down to a couple but thought I'd get some advice from folks in the know.

The two I am looking at right now is the Bushmaster Carbon 15 found on Buds here for $699: Bushmaster CAR15 223 16 BSH REDDOT $699.00 SHIPS FREE

I can't figure out on this particular bushmaster model if it has the chome lines barrel. Are they even needed.

and a DPMS for $589: DPMS RFA3OC PTHR ORC 16 223 $589.00 SHIPS FREE

Are there others I should be looking at in this price range? I looked at the Smith & Wesson MP Sportster but its out of stock right now and it had a good price on it but didn't have the forward assist nor the dust cover which I think for my use would be more for look anyways. What I did like about it was the lifetime warrenty whereas bushmaster and DPMS only have a one year.

I am going to mount optics, red dot most likely, but want to be able to add at least aftermarket flip up sights or something or at least have them on hand in case of a optics failure in a TEOTWAWKI situation. I don't obesess about TEOTWAWKI but like to be prepared. More of a preper I guess. Like if I am going to buy a .22 rifle and put optics on it, I wont buy one unless its got open sights on it even though I never plan on using the open sights.

Anyway I'd like to get something accurate enough to reach out reliably a couple hundred yards. It will get used some. Probably put 1000 rounds through it until the new wears off then it may see 500 rounds per year after that.

I'm new on here and appreciate the help, realizing I have no experience at all with AR type weapons. I have several guns but they are all hunting models and pistols.

dallee 06-12-2011 04:23 PM

I've also noticed in some pics that some people put a red dot on top of the ones that have handles on them. Does it not set up too high? Would you be able to get a bead on something 200 yards away with the scope mounted on top of the handle?

canebrake 06-12-2011 04:35 PM

Better read this:

Split Lower

Build your own!

mmszbi 06-12-2011 05:31 PM

I'm with one. Stag Arms A2 flat top, all parts to build lower and buy complete upper, takes about an hour to put together, excellent rifle right in your budget. I did my first AR this way, didn't know squat about them before I did...wouldn't every buy one complete now.

russ 06-12-2011 05:51 PM


Originally Posted by mmszbi (Post 521616)
I'm with one. Stag Arms A2 flat top, all parts to build lower and buy complete upper, takes about an hour to put together, excellent rifle right in your budget. I did my first AR this way, didn't know squat about them before I did...wouldn't every buy one complete now.

+1. I'd steer clear of the Carbon15. Build your own lower and buy an upper that appeals to you.

Dillinger 06-12-2011 06:27 PM

Well hell. Everyone here knows my stance on this subject, but everyone likes personalized advice to them, so allow me put this broken record on one more time as I love the sound of my own voice. :p

First the Carbon stuff is not a good idea. The technology is nice, but it's far from reliable, proven or worth the "savings" in weight when you look at a complete gun.

Now, there is no reason to buy a complete gun in this market right now when you can build one for about the same money, but get better overall components.

There are literally parts everywhere for AR-15's right now and there is no downside to learning the platform and being able to maintain it yourself.

You take someone who buys a $1500 gun, they don't know how the damn thing runs, they just know how to load and clean it.

You take one of our MANY FTF Badge holders who built their own weapon for $800-$1000 and not only will they probably outshoot the other guy, but they will be able to tell you exactly what parts they chose, what benefits those parts bring to their weapon and why they chose brand x over any others out there.

Build your own. You will be MUCH happier, safer and knowledgeable about the platform, it's abilities and uses.

There is NO DOWNSIDE to building your own. Well, except they do get addicting. :D


diggsbakes 06-12-2011 06:35 PM

As far as the question of whether or not to build your own. Build It. Anyone can do it, just do A LOT of reading and look over many, many pictures and step-by-steps, then ask questions. We love to answer them, but if you do your reading, either from a book (My preferred method and there is several GREAT "AR-15 Assembly Guides" out there.

As far as Bushmaster, I've heard some claims of poor quality control and customer service, so I won't be using any of their products anytime soon, however, I've got an (now) older "Dissipator" and I love it!!! It's one of my most reliable ARs.

If you shop right, you can have a great shooting AR for $600-$700 in parts. Just cut where appropriate and spend where needed.

Good Luck! :)

dallee 06-12-2011 07:11 PM

Sounds practical and the way I should go. I'm not really mechnically inclined but I always do learn how to break down and service all of my guns completly and have done some trigger and extractor customs to some, so I might be able to get this build stuff down.

Now I need to go find some books or info on building. Anyone got recomendations on a good site or good book. I don't mind doing the research and will but at this point I wouldn't know if I was getting good advice and info from a book or web article as I really am completly new at this AR stuff.

I suppose I will find the answer researching but I was wondering is it just the lower that I'd have to have sent to an FFL to get it or does the upper have to be done as well that way?

I'm in Texas so I'm don't think I have any concerns about what I buy like someone in NY or Cal would have.

But ok, you guys do have me convinced to build one. I think it would be fun.

Dillinger 06-12-2011 07:22 PM

dallee - You are in the right place. Take a look at the Stickied Threads at the top of this section. You will see that a bunch of other folks came here exactly like you are right now and have asked some of the same questions you have right now.

Yes. The lower is the only piece of all the components that has to be sent to an FFL and is the only "registered" part.

Once you have one lower, you can assemble (6) or (26) different uppers for every different configuration and no one will know the difference from the paperwork standpoint.


Dillinger 06-12-2011 07:28 PM


Originally Posted by fastmaninstructor (Post 521672)
Hey have fun with hitting targets especially steel beyond 150yds, but for serious shooting (150 yd. & beyond to 600 meters) get an AR-10 caliber not a 5.56 that you'll hose lead with to hit in all likelihood. and folks please spare me the "Robin Hood" stories...ok?

What does this have to do with this thread?

The guy is asking about getting into the AR field and had some questions, but the only yardage mentioned was 200 yards in relation to having a scope or Aimpoint on top of an A2 carry handle?? :confused:

Quite frankly I see no help in your post what so ever.


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