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Discussion Starter #1
Have narrowed my choice down to the Smith & Wesson M&P Sport 2. The reviews overall seem excellent and have read the warranty is top-notch too. But was also starting to look at a Colt 6920 or a something from Daniel Defense. My question is: would I be getting much more in terms of reliability, durability and longevity if I were to go with a higher end AR, like the Colt or DD. I will be using this gun for practice on the range and home defense (ie. worst case scenario situation), hopefully that will never occur.
I like to keep things simple which is why I was really drawn to the S&W, but just want some more opinions before making a final decision. Thanks in advance.
 

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How many rounds to you think you'll put thru it? Realistically?
if it's 10,000 or more, then spend some money on a higher end rifle.
Otherwise, any of them will do fine.
 

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I have always considered the 6920 to be the best rifle available for the money. I wouldn't personally wouldn't put the extra cash into a DD when Colt is perfectly fine for my purposes. Really though, if conflicted.. I would simply toss a coin between the Colt and Smith and be done with it.
 

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The sport2 has an odd looking barrel but I do not know if its cheaper made than the colt barrel.. the sport feels lighter to me overall than the colt.
 

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Does Colt make their own parts like Ruger? Or do they source them out only to put their name on it?
I don't know but Make sure you aren't spending the extra dollars on the name.
 

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Another great option is the Ruger AR556. I owned one last year and it was a great rifle. The problem with these entry level gun though is that if you are anything like most gun people, good is never good enough. I ended up with almost $1500 in that $600 Ruger because I started upgrading everything on it. The best way to buy an AR is to buy a really nice one from the get go. You have to look at the styling of these rifles as well. The biggest thing with me was that I hate the old school look of the fixed front sight post and the cheap looking fore grip. I went with a 15" free float rail and flip up back up sights instead, which is the new style that most modern shooters are going for. I know that when it comes down to function it doesn't matter, but some people like to have their gun both extremely reliable and aesthetically pleasing.

So back to the Ruger I had. I ended up swapping the charging handle, rail, bolt carrier group, all the furniture, gas block, etc, etc. so in the end I would've been better off building what I wanted, which I did with my current gun. Basically don't rush into anything. Figure out what you ar going to want in a gun and buy the right one from the start. You may be someone who will be just fine with a stock entry level rifle and if so then either the S&W Sport, Ruger AR556, or the Colt will be fine. If you are the type of person that likes to have the latest style and technology then consider those things before you do anything. There are enough photos and info out there that you should have no problems figuring out what you want quickly.

Another option is Colt and other companies make a gun with no furniture on it. So you buy the naked gun and add whatever rail, Buttstock, grip, sights, etc that you want. That's a great way to go also. I forget what the model number by Colt is for their stripped rifle but they do offer it. They come with either a fixed front sight/gas block, or a low profile gas block so you can add a longer free float rail.

Good luck in your search. There are lots of great options out there now. Really too many. So have fun putting together your rifle.
 

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Nobody mentioned it but I will. IF return on investment (resale value) is important to you the Colt is way better than most others including DD (which makes great guns)! The Colt 6920 IS the industry standard. OTOH, if you are not worried about return on investment and want a decent no frills AR that is not junk then the S&W Sport, Ruger AR 556, and PSA Premiums are all very sound AR's IMO! Just my .02 worth!
 

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First thing you need to do, is sit down and decide how much shooting/practice or training you plan on doing. Be forewarned.........AR rifles are "fun" and addictive. With that said......if you only plan on casual practice at the range from time to time, then the entry level is all you will need.
If you get the AR bug as most folks do and decide to start modifying/upgrading your entry level rifle then it might be a good idea to consider spending the $$ for the intermediate level rife now. The Colt would be a great investment. There are some really nice mid level rifles available for a few hundred extra dollars. No one can make the final decision but you. Do some soul searching and decide what would be best for your needs and your budget. Just have fun with the whole process and enjoy your new AR.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all the advice everyone. I'm thinking the Colt 6920 will be what I end up getting. As mentioned above it's supposed to be the industry standard. I will not be putting thousands of rounds through it, but do want a gun that I can pass down in the family. I've read that the intermediate/higher end AR's have barrels which handle the steel cased ammo better. From what I understand, the barrel is the main component that will wear down with time, if used heavily.
 

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Thanks for all the advice everyone. I'm thinking the Colt 6920 will be what I end up getting. As mentioned above it's supposed to be the industry standard. I will not be putting thousands of rounds through it, but do want a gun that I can pass down in the family. I've read that the intermediate/higher end AR's have barrels which handle the steel cased ammo better. From what I understand, the barrel is the main component that will wear down with time, if used heavily.
You can't go wrong with the colt le6920. I have a s&w sport that has been through a couple classes and is over 8000 rounds. It is a great rifle that I picked up when they were on sale for $500. Now that they are getting closer to $700, I would get the colt. There just isn't enough price difference at this point to consider going with a $650-700 AR with Colt's around $900. If you want something other than a standard set up, then I would recommend you take a look at BCM and DD. I have a DDM4V11 that is my go to rifle. I added an aimpoint, MBUS, light and Geiselle SDC trigger and it is about perfect. THen again I have over 2K into it.If you plan on going with a free float barrel then I would recommend you look at BCM upper and get a PSA blem lower. You should be around $1100 (about 300-400 less than DD) . If you modify the colt, you will easily spend more than that.
 

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The Colt 6920 is a fine gun. I would lean more towards the Daniel Defense if you were looking at that price range. They have cold hammer forged barrels and some of the lightest rails in the industry. A great $700 to $800 gun is the Ruger SR-556. They deliver a lot of gun for the money too.
 
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my AR-15

I had an Ar-15 in the army and i have to say they are incredibly reliable guns. Kind of a pain to clean but amazing guns and i think they are great as the go to for army issue guns.
 

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I had an Ar-15 in the army and i have to say they are incredibly reliable guns. Kind of a pain to clean but amazing guns and i think they are great as the go to for army issue guns.
The Army issued you an AR-15 or you owned your own? The Army doesn't buy, own nor does it issue AR-15's.
 

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While we are spending your money... I have both a Windham (lower price) AR and a DD. I admit that I have a love affair with the DD. It is absolutely my go to rifle. That being said, the Windham has been flawless in operation as well. So what can i tell you? Not all that much.
 

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And just thinking on this, I do like the 1:7 vs the 1:9 twist on the DD, especially when shooting heavies bullets.
 

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Just because you spend more money on a better rifle, will not make you a better shooter. I have a S&W Sport II and I out shoot my buddy with a Colt. Spend the extra money on bullets & practice.
 
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