Newbie help on picking an AR

Newbie help on picking an AR

This is a discussion on Newbie help on picking an AR within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; OK, Faithful, I'm a total newbie when it comes to AR's/Assault rifles. I fear I'm going to get a dozen absolutes on what to buy. ...

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Thread: Newbie help on picking an AR

  1. #1
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    Newbie help on picking an AR

    OK, Faithful, I'm a total newbie when it comes to AR's/Assault rifles. I fear I'm going to get a dozen absolutes on what to buy. I will also be revealing my ignorance in what I'm looking for.

    Here's the deal: I'm looking for a defensive weapon. I'm not concerned with pretty or a bucket of accessories. I want something that I can pull out of the mud and shoot - something that won't have a FTF halfway through a magazine. I'm not overly concerned with "uppers" or "lowers", folding stocks, lasers or scopes. I am clueless on the plethora of caliber options.

    Basically, I'm looking for "point and shoot". Because of my Nam-era training, I like the idea of a carry handle and a forward assist but that could just be my forty-year bias. Price: I 'm clueless. I'm not Daddy Deep-pockets but I will sell/save what I need to so this can come together.

    Finally, meaning no disrespect, I would like some "pros" to weigh in on this. That is, guys with first hand experience and not something they read on a blog or forum. Sorry. But I bought an M1 Carbine two years ago on thin advice. I ended up giving the POJ away. Set me back a pretty penny when you include mags and ammo.
    "The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left." Eccl. 10:2


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    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    Bushmaster in .223/5.56.

    It's what I have. A good middle of the pack rifle, that won't brake the bank.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
    -Tony Soprano

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    Senior Member Array Gun Bunny's Avatar
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    One name- Spikes!
    http://www.spikestactical.com/
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    VIP Member Array peckman28's Avatar
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    Get yourself a Colt LE6920 and don't look back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by peckman28 View Post
    Get yourself a Colt LE6920 and don't look back.
    Can't go wrong with the LE6920. I have one and it's been great. It does come with a removable carry handle in case you want to mount a red-dot in the future (which I highly recommend). You can find one for $1175 on the web. If you want only one and want it to last through heavy use, then it's your best bet.

    My first rifle was an LMT Defender 2000 and have had zero issues with it as well. The LMT does not come with a carry handle.

    There are lots of other companies out there making great rifles such as Daniel Defense, Noveske, BCM, LMT, etc.

    G19, G23, P2000 (9mm), LMT Defender 2000 (SOPMOD), Colt LE6920, Ruger 10/22

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    Senior Member Array canav844's Avatar
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    Here's a link with some "thick" advice, if nothing else it'll help you reaffirm whichever choice is right for you.

    So you want to buy an AR-15, huh? - Police Forums & Law Enforcement Forums @ Officer.com

  7. #7
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    Since you mentioned that this would be a defensive rifle...

    DC AR-15 Buyer's Guide

    It's still rough around the edges, but a good start nonetheless.


    A more direct response to your question is find a rifle that you can shoot the piss out of, and make sure part of your budget for this rifle is the ammo to shoot the piss out of it. You're already a little familiar with the AR platform and I don't know how current you are with shooting/training, but you'll need to shoot the gun to know that it works. I'll second Shotdown's suggestion on a quality red dot.

    Bravo Company (highly recommended), Colt, Daniel Defense, LMT, and Noveske are pretty much the industry leaders and for good reason. I'd recommend all of them without hesitation, especially Bravo Co. KAC's new SR15 E3 IWS is by all accounts a fantastic rifle, but it starts off fully-loaded and thus at a higher price point; frankly, at its price point it's probably the best dollar value for a high-quality rifle on the market, especially if some of its parts are sold off and replaced (stock, grip, irons, etc.).


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    Colt, FN, S+W, Lewis M+T, Noveske - good.

    DPMS, Olympic Arms - not good.

    Lots of middle ground - Bushamster, Rock River, more. Reliability costs more.

    Look on line for "the chart" by Rob Sloyer, plus reliability info from Pat Rogers.
    Smitty
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    Member Array 120mm's Avatar
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    You can put buy a complete Spike's Tactical for $800. This is a pretty good carbine.

    You can put together the upper and lower of a BCM for around $950-$1050. By putting together, I mean sliding two pins with your thumbs. Anyone can do it. You will then have the state of the art, world-beater carbine.

    You can buy a complete Colt 6920 for around $1200. Again, state of the art.

    If you buy a Bushmaster, you'll probably need to have someone stake the gas key and maybe re-ream the chamber to make it the rough equal of a Spike's.

    S&W 15 is roughly equal to a Spike's.

    After that, everything is how much money you want to spend. I don't discourage people completely away from RRA or Bushmaster, but why for the love of all that is holy, whould you pay as much or more for one of those than you would for a Spike's, BCM or Colt?

  10. #10
    Distinguished Member Array pirate's Avatar
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    I strongly second the Spikes Tactical advice, otherwise possibly the best deal going right now on the web for a hi quality AR15 is at CDNN. They have the basic S&W M&P15 with flattop reciever for $799 and it comes with 18 free mags! Thats hard to beat.

    Page 32-33 of their latest catalog



    CDNN Sports, Inc.
    Last edited by pirate; May 8th, 2010 at 05:03 PM.
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    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    That is good advice from pirate right there....I do have a Colt LE Carbine, the 6721HB. Tht should be something you also look at. Still cant go wrong with a Colt.
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    I picked up a Bushmaster ORC. I did the customizing myself. Added an Osprey gas piston kit, MOE handguard, magpul stock, and Eotech 557. I like the 557 because I purchased it in a kit that had a magnifier with it. Can handle the short stuff as well as a little longer if needed. It is not that hard to do. I am not a fan of heavy barrels because of the added weight and I am not really using it for long range accuracy. One thing that is most important is good ammo. Tried some wolf and some other cheap stuff and had nothing but problems. Shop around and fing good 5.56 ammo and you won't have any problems.

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    Member Array Longbow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peckman28 View Post
    Get yourself a Colt LE6920 and don't look back.
    Yep, what he said....


    "Planning to draw and chamber a round after TSHTF is like planning to fasten your seatbelt after you see the other guy run a stopsign..."

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    Quote Originally Posted by varob View Post
    Bushmaster in .223/5.56.

    It's what I have. A good middle of the pack rifle, that won't brake the bank.
    Yep that is what I have. Not the finest tricked out precision AR made but a good solid entry level AR. I suspect I'll be keeping this one as I move up the the food chain as its been a great shooter and would have no problem depending upon it for HD or urban defense or hunting if need be.
    Abort the Obamanation not the Constitution

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  15. #15
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    Great stuff, guys (and girl), I'm going to walk slowly through all of this and the links. When I have questions I'll post them. Thanks!!
    "The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left." Eccl. 10:2

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