...either that I'm on track or that I'm completely off my rocker!
I have been going back and forth for months now trying to decide between an AR-15 in 5.56, or an M1A in 7.62 (both NATO calibers). I've come to the conclusion that I really want - dare I say need? - both, and fully intend to get both if I can. My worry is that I may not be able to come up with the funds for both before a new AWB is passed (I'm considering this a foregone conclusion at this point, and will be happily surprised if it doesn't pass early next year), so I need to decide which to get first.
For me, the purchase of any gun is determined by its intended purpose. Since I don't have any long guns right now, I want to satisfy my paranoid side by buying a high capacity, semi-auto rifle, suitable for both defensive & hunting (food, not humans!) purposes. Something that may not be perfect for any one application, but will be a suitable jack-of-all-trades should the SHTF.
Since this is my paranoia doing the thinking, I want something that will have readily available ammo, hence the limitation of 5.56 or 7.62. I'd like to be able to carry an ample supply of ammo on my person if necessary, which definitely favors the 5.56, and it helps that 5.56 ammo & magazines are currently about 1/2 the price of 7.62 ammo & magazines. This will make it easier to stockpile both.
So far the AR-15 wins hands down, right?
However, when it comes right down to it, I really like the M1As, and definitely prefer the 7.62 caliber on a shot-for-shot basis. I think I might cry a little if I get the AR-15 & then can't pick up an M1A before a ban takes effect.
But, when it comes right down to it, my first priority is to purchase the weapon that will accomplish the widest range of tasks should I only have one rifle at the time the SHTF. Am I wrong in assuming that the AR-15 is going to fit my current desires better?
If you think I am, can you please tell me why?
NOTE: Just to head off a whole bunch of un-needed discussion, this rifle will be my 3rd purchase, behind a Glock 19 & a Remington 870, so please limit your responses to rifle selection, and preferably AR-15 in 5.56 vs M1A.
NOTE 2: I won't be buying an AR-10 or anything similar in a 7.62 - if I choose the 7.62, it'll almost certainly be a Springfield M1A.
NOTE 3: I'm not expecting the STHTF, but I'd be happier knowing I had a tool available if it does. Given that, even though I do have an emotional preference for the M1A, I will definitely have fun plinkering around with the AR should the world stay sane. Like I said, I fully intend to get both if at all possible - the question is only "which one first".