Where can I go to learn more a about AR weapons?

This is a discussion on Where can I go to learn more a about AR weapons? within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Iíve been around, at my age of 63 most have I guess. Both my wife and myself have our CCW permits, actually carry permits in ...

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Thread: Where can I go to learn more a about AR weapons?

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    Senior Member Array Maverickx50's Avatar
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    Where can I go to learn more a about AR weapons?

    Iíve been around, at my age of 63 most have I guess. Both my wife and myself have our CCW permits, actually carry permits in MN as open carry is allowed here as well. I/we own maybe 8-10 pistols of various calibers, 3 shotguns, and a couple of hunting rifles. I bought my first 22 at the age of 10 without any need of a permit or even a parentsí permission. Actually collected pop bottles and turned them in to raise the money. (My how the world has changed) still have that 22. Only gun Iíd never part with. Iíve been a member of this forum/web site for some time now and even put in my dimes worth occasionally.

    Al that said Iím confused. Iíd like to buy an AR style weapon. I sort of like the 308 caliber but there is so much that confuses me. 7.62 and 308 are they fully interchangeable? Will some guns shot both and some not? What about the other calibers out there? What is the upper or the lower? Why are they sold separately? What should I be looking for if I was to want to be able to change over to shoot other caliber ammunition from 22 LR on up? Piston or gas? Etc. So much to learn and no one place to get it all in a simple format that can be understood. Where can I get AR xx 101 information and education?
    Thank you all I do enjoy this site.

    Fred from MN
    I carry to protect myself and my loved ones from the BG's. Not to solve societies problems. That said: if more carried the deterrent would only have a positive overall effect on those problems.

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    Member Array hk45c's Avatar
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    www.m4carbine.net
    The only other forum I spend time on for real. They have SO much info over there it's crazy.....bunch of great guys too

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    Member Array pistola's Avatar
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    I have a good kowledge of such from my military experience which included much hands on training and attending a small arms unit armorers course.At 63 enlistment is not in your options.Maybe a specific gunsmithing course?
    U.S. Army Veteran

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    In the AR 10 platform,I have an Eagle Arms 308,I shoot a lot of milsurp 7.62x51 ammo thru it,I also shoot 308 hunting ammo thru it,it will handle both without a problem
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
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    The biggest AR board on the net. It'll take you weeks to read it all and it pretty much answered every question ever asked...

    http://www.ar15.com/
    The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it...- George Orwell

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    Senior Member Array canav844's Avatar
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    My knowledge is by no means expert but I did set out some time ago with the intention of de-mystifying and learning about ARs because I was once like you quite lost beyond the knowing they're out there.
    Quote Originally Posted by Maverickx50 View Post
    Al that said I’m confused. I’d like to buy an AR style weapon. I sort of like the 308 caliber but there is so much that confuses me. 7.62 and 308 are they fully interchangeable? Will some guns shot both and some not?
    From Wikipedia...
    The .308 Winchester is a rifle round and is the commercial version of the military 7.62x51mm NATO centerfire cartridge. .... Although not identical, the 7.62◊51mm NATO cartridge is similar enough to the commercial .308 Winchester that the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers Institute (SAAMI) considers it safe to fire the NATO round in weapons chambered for the commercial round, but is silent on the opposite usage.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/7.62x51mm_NATO

    The way it has been explained to me, military brass is cheaper made (thinner case) and the extra space from round design can create problems when the thinner brass expands in the gaps.

    What about the other calibers out there?
    Pretty limitless if you're willing to look for it, there's uppers for everything from .22lr all the way up to .50 Beowolf; plinking hunting defense or just making big booms, there is something out there for just about everyone.

    What is the upper or the lower?
    This is easiest to explain to a novice visually so allow me to use images

    http://ee.ar15.com/uploadImages/2009...45434_File.JPG

    http://www.gandrtactical.com/images/.../BCM_Lower.jpg

    Think of the AR as a modular platform, it's two largest and broadest components being the the upper and lower, sort of an engine and transmission type thing.

    Why are they sold separately?
    While you can often buy them together as a unit, the lower is the part that is legally defined as the gun, so it is the part that you need to ship to an FFL, you can get an upper mailed straight to your door. Also you can take your .556 self defense upper off and replace it with a .308 or 6.5 upper and where legally ok, take it hunting or throw on a .50 upper to train for the zombie invasion. ARs are used from competition rifle to hunting to self defense to plinking.

    What should I be looking for if I was to want to be able to change over to shoot other caliber ammunition from 22 LR on up?
    Well the .22 conversion kits slip into a .556 (or .223) upper and often go for about $100-150 so they pay for themselves in just a few hundred rounds of ammunition. You're basically going to need to match mags with uppers for most of it.
    Piston or gas?
    Pluses and minuses to each method, properly cared for they both get the round down range, it's how you want to get there, cleaning process temperature, commonality with other ARs, etc.

    Etc. So much to learn and no one place to get it all in a simple format that can be understood. Where can I get AR xx 101 information and education?
    Thank you all I do enjoy this site.
    I'd second M4C for great reading resource, there's also a ton of great info in the shotgun and rifle forum right here on DC (There's a few really good reads from user BAC if you dig a little). I'd also reccomend the following thread to anyone just starting to learn about ARs, there's lots of what's what and what it does and why what's important; while he makes personal reccomendations he also writes it in a manner that lets you decide for yourself

    http://forums.officer.com/forums/sho...y-an-AR-15-huh

    And after you've read that go take a look at "the chart" and you can start to survey what's out there.

    The AR has seen a recent boom in past years in terms of popularity, so not only is there plenty out there in the "Barbie for Men" gun accessories
    department but there's also an increasing knowledge base from which to draw information.

    Glock Certified Armorer

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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hk45c View Post
    www.m4carbine.net
    The only other forum I spend time on for real. They have SO much info over there it's crazy.....bunch of great guys too
    Concur. I HIGHLY recommend reading A LOT before posting.....read the stickys first--they have a lot of in-depth knowledge there and can answer many of your initial and follow-up questions.....READ!!
    Magazine <> clip - know the difference

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    Senior Member Array jualdeaux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by canav844 View Post
    Also you can take your .556 self defense upper off and replace it with a .308 or 6.5 upper and where legally ok, take it hunting or throw on a .50 upper to train for the zombie invasion.
    This isn't true.

    There are basically two sizes of ARs, the 5.56 and the 7.62. Obviously, the 7.62 is going to have a larger mag well than the 5.56. Some alternate calibres will use the 5.56 version while others will need the 7.62.
    Bend the knees, smooth is fast, watch the front sight.

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    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    You can also go to YouTube to get some visual's about what you're reading. If you enter things like " breaking down an AR" or " cleaning an AR", they'll list some of the parts of the rifle as they handle them.

    Like you, when I first looked at AR's, I didn't know a single thing about them. But after spending a little time on the sites listed above, it wasn't too hard to figure out.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
    -Tony Soprano

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    Senior Member Array canav844's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jualdeaux View Post
    This isn't true.

    There are basically two sizes of ARs, the 5.56 and the 7.62. Obviously, the 7.62 is going to have a larger mag well than the 5.56. Some alternate calibres will use the 5.56 version while others will need the 7.62.
    I'm not sure I follow Don't get me wrong, if my information provided was inaccurate I want to correct it I don't want to peretuate any rumors. Are you talking like, the lower portion of a S&W M&P15-22 lower isn't compatible with a .233 upper and a Colt lower is incompatible with most any other brand upper? There certainly are a myriad of calibers available that will fit into the "AR platform" and it's largely my understanding (though I've never ventured there myself, yet) that many of the uppers are made with the existing lowers in mind so the mags are different but made to accommodate the standard .223 mag well, but I wouldn't necessarily expect this of all calibers so perhaps my statement was too broad in that regard?

    Some links to some less common AR caliber uppers
    http://www.m4carbine.net/forumdisplay.php?f=10
    http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...m_campaign=649
    http://www.50beowulf.com/FAQ.htm
    http://www.shop.umlautarms.com/50-Be...mblies_c17.htm
    http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...m_campaign=649
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...-or-.458-Socom
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...204-50-beowulf
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...-AR15-in-6.8mm


    But to make sure this thread stays on topic and doesn't get bogged down in smaller details, here's a link to a great guide on this forum http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...In-Progress%29

    Glock Certified Armorer

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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by canav844 View Post
    I'm not sure I follow Don't get me wrong, if my information provided was inaccurate I want to correct it I don't want to peretuate any rumors. Are you talking like, the lower portion of a S&W M&P15-22 lower isn't compatible with a .233 upper and a Colt lower is incompatible with most any other brand upper? There certainly are a myriad of calibers available that will fit into the "AR platform" and it's largely my understanding (though I've never ventured there myself, yet) that many of the uppers are made with the existing lowers in mind so the mags are different but made to accommodate the standard .223 mag well, but I wouldn't necessarily expect this of all calibers so perhaps my statement was too broad in that regard?

    Some links to some less common AR caliber uppers
    http://www.m4carbine.net/forumdisplay.php?f=10
    http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...m_campaign=649
    http://www.50beowulf.com/FAQ.htm
    http://www.shop.umlautarms.com/50-Be...mblies_c17.htm
    http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...m_campaign=649
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...-or-.458-Socom
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...204-50-beowulf
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...-AR15-in-6.8mm


    But to make sure this thread stays on topic and doesn't get bogged down in smaller details, here's a link to a great guide on this forum http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...In-Progress%29
    In short, there are two sizes (well, three if you count the .22LR only clones...but I really don't).

    There's the .223/5.56mm standard, "AR-15" type...this would be the most common type encountered, and made by dozens of not more manufacturers.

    And the .308/7.62x51 sized "AR-10" type...actually the original AR platform, but a little less common, and not made by nearly as many manufacturers (Mainly Armalite & DPMS with a few others).

    The difference is the AR-10 reciever is considerably larger, with a much larger magwell. There is no such thing as a .308 AR-15, and to the absolute best of my knowledge, there is no .223/5.56 AR-10.

    The two platforms have some interchangeable parts, but you cannot put a AR-15 upper reciever on an AR-10 lower, and vice-versa.
    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

    ...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper


    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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    Senior Member Array Maverickx50's Avatar
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    Thank to you all I'll read and absorb best my old mind will allow. I do find it interesting that even those that replied here have differences of opinions on what is basically a mechanical design of components. goes to show how too much tinkering with, or improvements to a great idea can muck up the what was a good design to start with. Or was it? my recollection was the first versions released to the troops (Vietnam era) either jammed or exploded due to poor materials used in the breach and machining tolerance problems. so guess a little tinkering was called for after all LOL
    I carry to protect myself and my loved ones from the BG's. Not to solve societies problems. That said: if more carried the deterrent would only have a positive overall effect on those problems.

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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverickx50 View Post
    Thank to you all I'll read and absorb best my old mind will allow. I do find it interesting that even those that replied here have differences of opinions on what is basically a mechanical design of components. goes to show how too much tinkering with, or improvements to a great idea can muck up the what was a good design to start with. Or was it? my recollection was the first versions released to the troops (Vietnam era) either jammed or exploded due to poor materials used in the breach and machining tolerance problems. so guess a little tinkering was called for after all LOL
    They jammed because the troops were told that the M16 required no cleaning or maintenence, and the military (in it's infinite wisdom) switched from the cleaner burning powder the round & gun was designed around for a much dirtier powder that quickly gunked up the unmaintained guns.

    Trust me on the .308/.223 thing, though. I have both.
    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

    ...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper


    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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    Senior Member Array Maverickx50's Avatar
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    Isn't there a new size out there now? a 6.2 or something close to that? would that use the same lower or be another one all it's own?
    I carry to protect myself and my loved ones from the BG's. Not to solve societies problems. That said: if more carried the deterrent would only have a positive overall effect on those problems.

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    VIP Member Array Cuda66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverickx50 View Post
    Isn't there a new size out there now? a 6.2 or something close to that? would that use the same lower or be another one all it's own?
    I think that you're referring the the 6.8mm SPC; it would use the AR-15 lower. Either that, or the 6.5mm Grendel, which would also use the -15 platform.

    Basically, when determining what lower a cartridge will use, what you need to look at is it's overall length.

    If it's similar to .223, it'll use the AR-15. If it's similar to .308, it'll use the AR-10.
    There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.--RAH

    ...man fights with his mind; the weapons are incidental.--Jeff Cooper


    There is a reason they try and make small bullets act like big bullets--Glockmann10mm

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