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Old 03-02-2010, 08:56 PM   #1
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I am going to be buying an AR-15 rifle, It'll be my first and was wanting some opinions on Manufacturers and if there really is a best option for parts. I do only have one requirement and that is that it be worth every penny I spend on it. I looked around through them and my 3 preferred options are the Colt M4 model with the 5.56 round, a Smith and Wesson version, and then the DPMS with the 6.8 I picked these because I know Colt and S&W i own other guns of theirs and have had no problems. The guy did say that Colt M4 uses special parts that you can only get from Colt, and the DPMS I know comes in a 6.8 a round that i have heard good things about. Regardless of what it is chambered for and which brand it will get free-floating quad rails and a new flip sights foregrip and a quick release scope, I'd like it to be able to reach out about 200-250 yards with a decent cluster. I am just looking for some advice to point me in the right direction for making a good choice and any recommendations on other manufacturers are welcome.

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Old 03-02-2010, 09:04 PM   #2
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please swing by the introduction section and let us know a little about yourself

any of those brands are good enough. if you want beyond 200yrds i would stick with a 20' barrel. free float is a definite must. as long as the manufacturer is well known i would go with the cheapest. or you could build one yourself and save $$.

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Old 03-02-2010, 09:06 PM   #3
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well i do know that my ruger SR556 upper and lower do not interchange easily with my DPMS panther M4 nor with my colt SP1. the SR556 upper nor the DPMS upper go easily onto my RIA lower. it will fit but i have to use a soft hammer to drive the takedown pins home. the SPI upper will fit on the RIA lower with an adapter pin for the front.

while a lot of manufacurers and assemblers CLAIM to be milspec for certain parts not all are. from hasty measurements i took with a set of calipers and other measuring devices i have handy that go down to 4 decimal places the RIA lower appears to be milspec fitting into those dimensions as does the colt sp1 upper for some but not all dimensions. the ruger and DPMS appear to be SLIGHTLY off in some spots.

my point is that one of the things you might consider is are you going to want different uppers later?? some makers or assemblers may have to have the new uppers fitted to the lower.

just my experiences so far with swapping various uppers and lowers around. take it with a grain of salt. others experiences and opions may vary. after all this is the interweb.

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Old 03-02-2010, 09:47 PM   #4
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TP,

Welcome aboard. Give us a little more info if you would, please.

1) what length/style of barrel were you looking at?
2) what configuration of AR? Rifle, carbine, A2 stock, collapsible stock, Close Quarters, long range, etc.
3) along with #2 above, do you want something in a flat-top receiver to be able to easily mount optics? do you want the traditional A2 handle? Or perhaps an A3 that has the removable A2 handle?
4) do you have a preference between the two calibers you quoted?
5) any pros/cons to possibly BUILDING your own?
6) probably the biggest determining factor.....what price range do you want to stay in?

That gives us a better idea of what to look at and recommend, versus wasting your time with options that aren't of interest to you, or are just our own biased favorites for whatever reasons.

Slo

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Old 03-03-2010, 02:14 AM   #5
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ok, i'll rattle off the answers to your questions first.

1. Been looking at the 16 inch Carbine style
2. Multi-purpose, Carbine Style, tac mods(foregrip, light, laser), quad-rail scope mounted on removeable lock mount with flip-ups.
4. Not particularly, accuracy would be my preference in any situation, but I think the 5.56 will be too small if I decide to strip it down and take it deerhunting so the 6.8 would make it dual purpose.
5. I have no aversion to building my own aside from assembled gun warranties, been tearing guns apart and putting them back together for years and if I have any hitches I know a 40 year experienced gunsmith that used to make his own brand and is skilled with newstuff aswell.
6. prefere under 2000, should be easy, even the colts were 1400, that leaves me 600 for some of the extras.

My purpose, primarily for purchasing is recreation, I enjoy shooting guns and challenging my abilities to put a bullet in a bullseye. On the other hand this is to be my mid-range rifle, I have several rifles with scopes, all bolt action all zero but one zero at 400 and my .22 is the only one with a 2x scope that is zero at 100. Assorted pistols nothing fancy. I really need something to deal with the varmits a little better than my current rifles, all mine are .300 and up. I do have to occasionally shoot at wild dogs and Coyotes and they get close to the house and nothing I have really makes me feel warm and fuzzy about being outside with them, 5 shots, bolt action, moving target, usually poor lighting, ranges from 10-100 yards and they travel in packs of 6 upwards to 16 I saw last year at one time.

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Old 03-03-2010, 02:25 AM   #6
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Building your own is SO MUCH easier than you might think...plus you get the added benefit of knowing how everything works by doing so. And you will come in WELL under your budget, leaving you more to spend on the really cool stuff we all want!

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Old 03-03-2010, 04:16 PM   #7
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looking at the parts lists and watching the guy strip it made it look simple. and i'm not opposed to building my own, but are individual parts under warranty like if a trigger assembly fails on it 15 rounds in am i just gonna have to go buy a new one and foot the bill myself? and some of the forum threads say that sometimes the parts are "close" to milspec but are a little longer or wider how much of that am i gonna run into?

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Old 03-03-2010, 04:57 PM   #8
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JP Rifles

JP Rifles - JP15 Pricing

LMT monolithic rail platform

Noveske n4 light

noveske n4 recce

POF 5.56 Recon

Larue Tactical Stealth uppers
To which I would add a complete lower Rainier Arms, LLC™ | Browse | Receivers - Lowers | LMT Defender 2000 Lower
with a Geiselle trigger assembly Rainier Arms, LLC™ | Browse | Trigger Groups | Geissele Hi Speed Trigger

Rainier Arms, LLC™ | Browse | Rainier Arms Elite Series | Rainier Arms 18.5 Elite Upper - 6.8SPC
To which I would add a complete lower Rainier Arms, LLC™ | Browse | Receivers - Lowers | LMT Defender 2000 Lower
with a Geiselle trigger assembly Rainier Arms, LLC™ | Browse | Trigger Groups | Geissele Hi Speed Trigger

Or...BCM lower assembly with a BCM SS410 Midlength upper

Keep in mind if you are piecing one together, as above, there may be additional parts required, such as optics, BCG's, etc.

But I would take any of the above over a Colt, SW, or DPMS 6.8...

Or...I would buy out all the parts I wanted and assemble what I want....

but then again, it's not my $2000
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Old 03-03-2010, 04:59 PM   #9
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Don't know about any warranties. Assembled ARs come with warranties?

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Old 03-03-2010, 05:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TacticalPrecision View Post
looking at the parts lists and watching the guy strip it made it look simple. and i'm not opposed to building my own, but are individual parts under warranty like if a trigger assembly fails on it 15 rounds in am i just gonna have to go buy a new one and foot the bill myself? and some of the forum threads say that sometimes the parts are "close" to milspec but are a little longer or wider how much of that am i gonna run into?
If the parts fail under normal use, most manufacturers will replace them, and...some will even go as far as to replace other parts that may have been damaged by the failure of their own parts. They all differ.

If a part does fail, you will have to remove and send it in, and then replace with the new parts. But then again, YOU control how it goes in, and make sure it all works according to how YOU want it to.

Most manufacturers out there now state if their parts are mil-spec. Keep in mind, mil-spec to AR's, is a spec that was designed to....40+ years ago. So there are quite a few manufacturers out there now, who are building a better "wheel", but may not be able to say it is "mil-spec", because it is actually an improvement over the 40yr old specs. Another thing...are you planning on going to war anytime soon, or using this as an LEO, private contractor, etc. with this piece? IF not, then does the mil-spec really mean anything? How many other pieces in your collection, whether they are handguns, shotguns, center-fire, rim-fire, etc. are mil-spec? Yet, you would not hesitate to use any of them would you? Just my .02 on that subject.

I still say building your own is the way to go. But some folks don't feel secure with that. If that is the case, then shop for the best upper assembly that fits your needs again. Then look for a lower assembly that is what you want. They don't have to be from the same manufacturer, and MOST of the AR manufacturers out there, their parts will interchange with little to no problems.(except COLT ) You can even buy complete uppers and lowers that are close to what you want, then change out things to personalize them, such as grips, triggers, sights, stocks, handguards, etc. By buying the two assemblies separate, you can also save a little money on taxes and fees. And like a few have already mentioned....building one yourself, also teaches you what makes it go bang, and what to do if something goes wrong. YOU will be able to take it apart, and put it back together. Not saying you can't do that with a pre-assembled piece, but if you assembled your own, you would know where and how it all went in, and not relying on some 8-5 assembly line monkey that could have had a rough weekend.
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