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View Full Version : Choosing an AR, need guidance.


gfen
May 5, 2005, 08:02 AM
Hello,

With word of a possible ban in PA, I figure now's the time to buy that AR-15 I've always wanted.

So, I've saved up $1K, and I'm prepared to lay it down to get something nice that I'll be happy with for a long time. I've been reading over options and designs, and I'm pretty sure I've come to the conclusion I want a 16" barrel and a regular, non-collapsing stock, but where I come up with confusion is... flat top or carry handle?

What do I plan to use the rifle for? Fun. I'm not involved in any organized shooting sports yet, and I'm primarily buying the rifle because I can and I've always wanted one. I initially thought that a carry handle would be best because if nothing else it has that proper, issue look to it.

However, does using a handle negate the option of putting an optical site of some nature onto it? If it doesn't completely negate it, does it just make it unrealstic and useless? Does purchasing a flattop with the option of a removable handle look silly, or does it at least maintain that proper AR look when its mounted?

OK, so its a silly question. Look, I never said it wasn't.

carolinaflats
May 5, 2005, 08:38 AM
Rock River Arms (www.rockriverarms.com) in my opinion offers the best quality/price ratio with Bushmaster following close behind.
As far as flat-top vs. carry handle goes it's up to personal preference. A flat top with the picatinny rail offers the easiest way to mount optics. RRA offers a carbine with a removable carry handle that sits on top of a rail, this could be the best option if you're not sure yet. Check www.AR15.com. There's tons of info there. Good luck.

bikenjam
May 5, 2005, 08:43 AM
Well, the first question i have for you is, is that 1K just for the gun or the gun and optics. And no, if you have a permanent handle you can still attach optics, they will just be higher than normal. And as far as that goes, you can get a Delta cheek peice that alows you to rest you cheek comfortably and be at the proper hight for optics mounted on a carry handle.

Now, you can go the route of a flat top and just get a removable carry handle. No they don't look stupid, and besides, the AR-15 wasn't designed around cosmetics anyway. this might be what you looking for. you can take the option of gettin a non-collapsing stock.
http://www.rockriverarms.com/item-detail.cfm?ID=AR1225X&storeid=1&image=nbrela4.gif&CFID=9980023&CFTOKEN=93537364&jsessionid=c03087c003d9$E5$F0y$

There's a bunch of great AR manufactures out there bushmaster, dpms, rockriverarms, armalite, les bear, knights, oylimpic arms...... the biggest thing is to go with the manufacture that gives the options you want.

gfen
May 5, 2005, 10:17 AM
Rock River Arms (www.rockriverarms.com) in my opinion offers the best quality/price ratio with Bushmaster following close behind.

I'm pretty much set on the RRA A2 or A4 standard at this point, assuming I can get one at internet retailer prices (coz its not gonna happen locally). Thus the decision between flattop or handle. :) )

be the best option if you're not sure yet. Check www.AR15.com.
There's tons of info there. Good luck.

Was waiting for my membership email to flow through when I started out here. Heh.

And now, next response!

Well, the first question i have for you is, is that 1K just for the gun or the gun and optics.

Just the gun, I really more or less want to get this thing in my grubby hands more than anything else. I deleted it from the initial post, but I'm basically buying it because I want it and because I can. Heh.

Now, you can go the route of a flat top and just get a removable carry handle.

This is something I've been assuming as probably the "right choice."

No they don't look stupid, and besides, the AR-15 wasn't designed around cosmetics anyway.

Agreed, and understood. Doubly so if I were purchasing it for any realistic reason (competition, work, hunting, general ranch gun, etc). However, I won't lie, its definatly about the looks for me, as well. I don't plan on playing ninja-operator any time soon, but I'd like it to look sleek and sweet in the cabinet.

There's a bunch of great AR manufactures out there bushmaster, dpms, rockriverarms, armalite, les bear, knights, oylimpic arms......

I'm definatly leaning towards RRA if I can find it without a long wait, or probably Bushmaster. I haven't heard much on DPMS and Olympic seems to come up as "cheap," with all of the baggage attached to anything with a budget price.

As I invision I'll only ever own one, I figured I'd start with a nice unit and then slowly build up what I felt was deficient as time moved on.

Thank you all, to have responded and those yet to, for your help.

Duxman
May 5, 2005, 10:59 AM
I've got an Olympic arms PC3 "Flattop" with optics on it. My only regret is not getting the model with the carrying handle and front sights on it.

While the flattop looks cool, purchasing the rear and front sight can be a tad expensive. (Over $200 is the best price I can find.)

Plus the issue with optics and the AR, is that if you are going to let your friends shoot your rifle, your custom zero is going to be off from theirs.

Anyway, no regrets, I like my PC3 and have fired many hundreds of rounds through it - no malfunctions. Tight weapon.

Have fun with your future AR.

Lycanthrope
May 5, 2005, 11:12 AM
Go A4. You can always get a detacheable carry handle and this isn't too much of a disadvantage save for being somewhat less durable than a carry handle attached to the receiver. It looks a lot like an A2 profile save for the large attachment screws.

The flat top has an advantage in that you will be more comfortable with optics and you can cowitness the optic with a flip up iron sight set. Shooting optics mounted to the carry handle really puts you up there and can feel unnatural to a lot of people.

The trend over at ar-15 are flat tops with optics and cowitnessed back ups.

gfen
May 5, 2005, 12:03 PM
Like all my posts, once I do it and I think about it a few minutes, I knew I had hte right answer all along.

Looks like we're going with a RRA Standard A4. There's a shop in GA that has uppers and lowers that he'll sell me for $698, plus shipping and they're instock.

No 6-8 week wait, cheaper than a full rifle. Says anyone can put it together. I'm sold.

Tomorrow, I do believe I order my new toy!

(had to edit so that people didn't misread "waiting period" and promptly correct me that there's no waiting for rifles)

jefnvk
May 5, 2005, 02:05 PM
Says anyone can put it together.

It is not hard at all

dZ
May 5, 2005, 02:22 PM
http://groups.msn.com/ThePennsylvaniaAR15ShootersSite/


http://groups.msn.com/TheMarylandAR15ShootersSite/ar15brands.msnw

AR-15 Rifle & Manufacturer Comparison

shaggy
May 5, 2005, 02:36 PM
I like RRA and own one or two rifles built with Bushmaster parts on RRA lowers (I can't keep track anymore). If you're going to build your own though, try to make sure you get a kit with a chrome lined barrel. RRA has stainless, chrome moly, and chrome lined barrels available, but the chrome lined are not standard and cost a little more.

farmall
May 5, 2005, 05:53 PM
If you go with RRA, gfen, I think you'll have made an excellent choice. I have the 24" varmint/target model. Couldnt be happier. I am very glad that i optioned the elevated optical platform, makes mounting scopes with a large objective much easier. Enjoy! :D :D :D

Rob96
May 6, 2005, 04:39 AM
gfen, nice to see another person from the Lehigh Valley on the board. Yesterday, I was up at Ontelaunee testing out my new DPMS M4'gery. DPMS puts out a hell of a nice product. Excellent fit and finish, reliable, and well known for their accuracy. I highly suggest DPMS. You can find them at Keifers Gun Shop in Walnutport. Bushmaster also puts out a good rifle. You can find them at Army & Navy. Also I thik Boyers in Slatington had one but it was an M4 type, with the collapseable stock. As far as carry handle or flat top. I suggest to get an A3 model, has the detable carry handle. Good luck in your quest. Cabelas had a few different Bushmasters, but they are about $100 more than around here.

keens
May 6, 2005, 06:16 AM
Armalite...check them out. My favorite.

gfen
May 6, 2005, 01:33 PM
RRA Standard A4, $717 shipped. Spoke to my dealer, they'll have their paperwork in the mail by Monday at the latest.

Now, I just need to follow this up with a nice AK47, and I'm set.

Thank you, again, to all of you for your help. You were invaluable in deciding between an A2 and an A4, as well as some other details.

-gfen.

fanoblack
May 6, 2005, 02:34 PM
Now all you need is a 1k rounds of surplus ammo to burn through. ;)

fanoblack

gfen
May 6, 2005, 07:54 PM
Heh...point made. ;)

-gfen, giddy.

itman
May 6, 2005, 11:54 PM
With word of a possible ban in PA, I figure now's the time to buy that AR-15I'm going to move...

TPAW
May 8, 2005, 08:43 PM
Silly question....How do you put someone else's "quotes" in the white box? :confused:

dZ
May 8, 2005, 08:55 PM
we stopped an AWB in Maryland for the last 2 years

Run away from PA?

wimps

Lycanthrope
May 8, 2005, 08:59 PM
Silly question....How do you put someone else's "quotes" in the white box?

TPAW.....you just highlight their post with the cursor and select "copy" from your "Edit" menu on your browser.

Then....when you make a new post you click on quote (the last icon that looks like a little cartoon thought box above where you type the text) and then you paste the other user's words in the little pop up that comes up.

TPAW
May 8, 2005, 11:44 PM
Thank you! :)

TPAW
May 8, 2005, 11:58 PM
TPAW.....you just highlight their post with the cursor and select "copy" from TPAW.....
Then....when you make a new post you click on quote (the last icon that looks like a little cartoon thought box above where you type the text) and then you paste the other user's words in the little pop up that comes up.your "Edit" menu on your browser.

Thanks again.......now I'm like a kid with a new toy!