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So…. I have been wanting a carbine for awhile now but unfortunately just couldn’t fit a AR into the budget. I love them but it is just to pricey of a purchase for me to justify. However doing a bit of research I have heard a lot of good things about the Kel Tec SU-16. One of the things I like about it is that you can buy a adapter to put a AR style collapsible stock on it. There are also a few other accessories that allow you to turn it into a nice little carbine. The reviews have been good as well. My real question here isn’t so much about the SU-16 but about rifle barrel lengths because I am not much of a rifle guy.

There are a couple of different models of the SU-16. The two that I am primarily looking at are the SU-16C and the SU-16D (Which come in two modles, the D12 and D9). The D9 has a 9 inch barrel, the D12 has a 12 inch barrel and the SU-16 has a 16 Inch Barrel. I am leaning towards the D9 or D12 because I think I would prefer the shorter barrel. It seems like this would make it a bit better in terms of maneuverability in tight spaces like my house or any other indoor environment. So my question is basically this. How much accuracy am I giving up? I’m not looking for a long range tack driver but I don’t want to give up too much in the accuracy department. This weapon will not have a scope mounted to it. I will use something more along the lines of a red dot style optic.
 

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"How much accuracy am I giving up?" = None.
 

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"How much accuracy am I giving up?" = None.
lol, like I said, Im not a rifle guy :) Ok, if I'm not giving up accuracy what am I giving up with the shorter barrel?
 

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This point is actually moot now. I just realised the 9 and 12 inch barrel models are classified as SBR's. Im not paying a extra 200 bucks. SU-16C it is!
 

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Not to misunderstand, are you looking at a 16" barrel carbine or a less than 16" barrel SBR (short barrel rifle)? SBRs are NFA weapons and subject you to paying for a class 3 tax stamp, intense checks and fees. Here is a good primer on what is required for a SBR. The only NFA weapon restricted to own in Indiana are short barreled shotguns so you are good in that respect. More Indiana specific NFA rules.

edit: ok, never mind
 

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You lose a bit of velocity from the round. As an example, a M-16 is good for about 200 more meters than an M-4 is (this was computed by comparing the max effective range of both weapons systems), due to the way that the ballistics are affected by the 16.5" barrel as opposed to the 20" barrel. A skilled shooter can still use an M-4 to hit man shaped targets to at least 500 yards using iron sights.

For a HD gun, I'd get the shortest barrel possible, it makes life easier for a lot of reasons, including maneuverability and weapons retention.
 
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