Should I buy a new carry gun or buy an AR15?

This is a discussion on Should I buy a new carry gun or buy an AR15? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; While trying to decide whether I should trade my Jframe for a M&P Shield I came across a sale on a S&W M&P15 Sport. In ...

View Poll Results: AR15 or another carry pistol?

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  • AR15 M&P Sport

    37 61.67%
  • M&P Shield

    23 38.33%
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Thread: Should I buy a new carry gun or buy an AR15?

  1. #1
    Member Array joepa150's Avatar
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    Should I buy a new carry gun or buy an AR15?

    While trying to decide whether I should trade my Jframe for a M&P Shield I came across a sale on a S&W M&P15 Sport. In order to buy the sport I will have to trade in my M&P 15-22. After all is said and done, I will have to come out of pocket about $350 for the Ar15.
    I do not live close to an outdoor range so I probably will only shoot the AR15 3 times per year. The rest of the time it will just sit around.

    The other option is to buy a new carry gun. I carry an LCP and jframe in warm weather and a 1911 in cold weather. I like keeping my G19 as a bedside gun so I no longer carry it much. So I was thinking of getting a M&P Shield for $409.99.

    The AR15 will not get used as much but it is cool to have and I don't have many rifles.

    The Shield is nice because it is something I would use frequently throughout the year. To buy the shield I could trade in the jframe and only come out of pocket about $185 or just buy the Shield which is not much more than if I had to trade in my 15-22 to get the AR15 (that I will not use much but would be cool to have).

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array darbo's Avatar
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    I'm going to say the M&P Sport because you don't say anything about already having a long gun of any kind. You already have the pistol aspect covered. My .02
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  4. #3
    Member Array joepa150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by darbo View Post
    I'm going to say the M&P Sport because you don't say anything about already having a long gun of any kind. You already have the pistol aspect covered. My .02
    To be honest, I have always purchased more pistols because I feel like I will get more use out of them. Long guns I can't shoot in my area unless I shoot at 25yrds indoors :(.

    I have a shotgun for HD. The only rifle I have is the M&P15-22 which I would have to trade in for the M&P15 Sport. So I would still have the same amount of long guns BUT I will be getting a 5.56/223 round rifle instead of a .22lr. Really the AR15 will just be a cool toy to own that I could use if SHTF but probably would grab my shotgun first.

    I know the MP15 Sport is a great bang for the buck but I could also build one. I just don't want to spend more money building one, it seems like the popular parts for an AR15 are typically sold out, plus I would get the trade in value if I built one on my own.

  5. #4
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    After rereading your opening paragraph to figure out what you're saying, you apparently have enough handguns for SD, you want the AR, you don't need another handgun.

    Buy what you want. If you have no use or need for the AR, get the handgun.
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  6. #5
    VIP Member Array tkruf's Avatar
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    I wanted an AR a while back. I have plenty of hand guns (in my opinion), but when I went shopping I ended up getting a S&W 15-22 also (like you). I recently decided that it would behoove me to get the real deal. So yesterday I picked up a CORE15 from a LGS. They had them priced at $899. Hard chromed chamber and all, they are designed by same guy that started up and ran Bushmaster. I think in today's society every gun nut should own a 5.56. :)
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  7. #6
    Distinguished Member Array kapnketel's Avatar
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    Handgun is more versatile. The Sport is a bottom end AR. If you want an AR, save your pennies and buy a better one. If your budget is fixed, buy the handgun.
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  8. #7
    Member Array GetSmith's Avatar
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    Here is another option. Have you thought of going with the AK47 platform for a long gun? I would keep your .22LR. That's an essential gun to have in a long term SHTF senario. Trade your J-frame and put the funds toward an AK which can be had for $400-$600 depending on your area.

    I debated the AR15 vs AK47 purchase a bit. The AK made sense to me because like you I would only shoot it a couple times a year. It would mainly be a SHTF rifle. I did not want to trick it our with light$,la$ers,and $cope.

    The AK's 7.62x39 round is a heavier hirer and cheaper than .233. Guns are cheap it's the ammo that gets you. I've found 1000 rounds of 7.62 for about $200 shipped, 1000 rounds of .223 is about $300. I just ordered 7000 rounds of 7.62x39 for SHTF.

    For SHTF a large caliber rifle is necessary IMHO. Get it while you can.

  9. #8
    Member Array joepa150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GetSmith View Post
    Here is another option. Have you thought of going with the AK47 platform for a long gun? I would keep your .22LR. That's an essential gun to have in a long term SHTF senario. Trade your J-frame and put the funds toward an AK which can be had for $400-$600 depending on your area.

    I debated the AR15 vs AK47 purchase a bit. The AK made sense to me because like you I would only shoot it a couple times a year. It would mainly be a SHTF rifle. I did not want to trick it our with light$,la$ers,and $cope.

    The AK's 7.62x39 round is a heavier hirer and cheaper than .233. Guns are cheap it's the ammo that gets you. I've found 1000 rounds of 7.62 for about $200 shipped, 1000 rounds of .223 is about $300. I just ordered 7000 rounds of 7.62x39 for SHTF.

    For SHTF a large caliber rifle is necessary IMHO. Get it while you can.
    That's a good point. I want an ak or ar while we are still allowed to buy them.

  10. #9
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    I wouldn't ditch the M&P 15-22. It's a fantastic rimfire rifle, fun and inexpensive to shoot and would be a valuable tool in many scenarios.
    It sounds like you've got the handgun thin under control, so perhaps it might be worth considering a center-fire AR, which you could easily build as the finances allowed. Start with a good lower and build from there.

    Be sure to share your decision with us and don't skimp on the pictures :)
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  11. #10
    VIP Member Array Thunder71's Avatar
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    I traded my AR15 for a carry gun lol.

  12. #11
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    I think that a good AR 15 is a necessary tool in every arsenal. I would get one.

  13. #12
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    You can always get the Sporter.....The Shield? If you know where one is........RUN...and buy it......QUICKLY!
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  14. #13
    Senior Member Array Lotus222's Avatar
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    You're profile says you're in GA. Even if you're in Atlanta, the city is so spread out, there are places to shoot long guns. It's not like NYC. I know you may not be able to go out back and start shooting on your property, but... Have you done any research to find any outdoor ranges in your area? Since you are in GA, defensively, I would opt for the AR or a shotgun if you already own handguns. I'm in the process of building an AR, myself.

    I do some hunting, plinking, etc., so a versatile rifle is a no-brainer for me. But hey, if you enjoy shooting your pistols often, and don't do much (or any) of that other stuff, it wouldn't hurt to grab another.

  15. #14
    VIP Member Array TedBeau's Avatar
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    I voted AR, but only because I think you have enough handguns for daily CCW. I agree GetSmith though, take a look at an AK. You can get a top of the line AK for about the same price as an entry level AR. If it's your SHTF gun the AK is known for it's reliablity. I personally like the 7.62 X 39 round for carbine range work (25-200 yards). You could also look at an AK-74 in the 5.45X39 round if you want something with a little more range. If your not a purist I think you can get an AK in 5.56/.223 also.

  16. #15
    Senior Member Array Alex_C's Avatar
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    It sounds like you already have 3 or 4 firearms suitable for concealed carry, and lack a rifle beyond .22 caliber. For those reasons I would go for the AR15.

    I chose an AR15 as a SHTF gun due to availability of ammunition and parts. The smaller round doesn't bother me; it seems to be doing ok for our armed forces so it's good enough for me. The merits of an AK in terms of durability cannot be beaten and I was leaning in that direction myself for a long time, but I feel that it would simply be easier to procure 5.56x45 (or .223) than 7.62x39 and if parts are required most gun shops have some, not to mention military and law enforcement.

    If you do decide to get the Shield, please consider keeping the J-frame. It is chambered in a common caliber, it is reliable and it is very concealable. The simplistic utility of a snubbie revolver can sometimes be invaluable.

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