Vepr, Arsenal, or Socom 16?
I am looking to purchase my 1st rifle as my next firearm. I'm pretty squared away for handguns at this moment, although many more will be in my future. I'm not a hunter or target shooter. My only interest is having a fun military style plinker I can take out and enjoy. Might be rotated in with my 870 for home defense. Would use my choice for any tactical carbine courses that I may take in the future. Might use if for a squad car rifle if I get accepted into the academy and the department allows it. I have found 3 rifles that I really like. I realli have no preference for one over the other and would love to own any of them. But I can't make up my mind and would like some recommendations. Oh and I don't want to hear any votes for ARs or FALs. Both good guns, but I prefer the ones listed below.
1. Vepr K in either 7.62x39mm or 5.56. A little less expensive than the Arsenal and alot cheaper than the Socom 16. IMO the best looking AK by far and overbuilt for the role, but are hard to come by. Accessories are harder to come by, but I would only plan to add an Ultimak rail, EoTech sight, Ace folding stock, and Surefire light. Would probably go with the 5.56 because its easier to find now a days, is less expensive, and I believe it will be more accurate.
2. Arsenal Ak in 5.56. I would get the stamped reciever to get a lighter, handier weapon and the 5.56 round would equal to less recoil and faster target reaquisition. A dealer I know can get them very easily. I handled an Arsenal AK in .223 and I loved it. Felt better built than any AR I have ever handled and I really don'y find it that much less ergonomic. Accessories are easier to find than the Vepr, but I would add the same things.
3. Springfield Armory M1A Socom 16. An awesome take on a legendary rifle. 308 round it more powerful and I could potentially use it for the ocassional hunt (which is rare). It is an expensive weapon at $1600ish and the increase in firepower isn't necessarily needed. Heavier than the Arsenal, Vepr might be close. But I can handle the weight and I don't plan on carrying it slung on my back for miles at a time. My only mod would be to add an EoTech sight.