View Full Version : Sorry another AR 15 thread

June 13, 2010, 09:44 PM
Sorry for another AR 15 thread.
But i've been reading lots of threads on the "cheapest AR 15",
and i've been left wondering, is it worth buying the cheapest you can find (under $700), or will you be left with a hunk of rubbish that will end up costing you lots more, and make you wish that you had got a better quality one ( M&P or Rock River)?

On a second thought, do the more expensive M4 style 14" barrel AR 15 give you better accuracy?


June 13, 2010, 10:22 PM
I think a major point for buying the more expensive guns tend to be of a more reliable quality. Not to say any particular maker/gun is necessarily bad, but you ask about any manufacturer and you are sure to get a huge number of happy people with "no problems", and probably a few lemons too.

I built my AR, the gun itself would have come in around $700, but I spent a bit more on factory accessories. I enjoyed the experience and it has not had a single problem, but the lack of a warranty or factory support that everything is going to work together does scare some people off this route.

Personally, I always do extensive research on expensive purchases and get my homework done on the available options. I concluded that for my purpose, I didn't need a high dollar gun, but rather something that had good customer feedback from a known, honest manufacturer that I could customize. So, I guess if I am saying anything, it's that you choose a gun depending on your needs. Plinking vs varmints vs combat would lead me to chose very different guns and would affect my budget dramatically.

June 13, 2010, 10:32 PM
Barrel length doesn't mean accuracy.

The better guns on the market will shoot a 1000 round carbine course and not likely fail. The parts are made to specification, inspected by specification, assembled by experienced workers to specification. That costs money.

There's a new post on TOS from Bravo Company that outlines some of the things specific to their products. It's a good wake up just exactly why some other companies have lesser prices - not all the parts are spec or inspected.

Another problem is comparing apples to oranges. An issue M4 has a contract price around $1100 - $300 of that is the KAC quad rail. That makes it a $800 gun. They make up the expense of inspections and meeting government standards from volume. Others have to make their way on their own, at the mercy of the public's assumption they make good product. Reputation is critical to staying in business ( which begs the question how some still are.)

IF you are using the weapon daily or weekly in literal life and death incidents against other armed individuals, don't scrimp. The other 95% of us don't need that, it's just a recreational firearm. Spend the extra if you like and can, but for most, it's not really necessary. Those who say otherwise are likely just engaging in their own self enhancement.

June 13, 2010, 11:18 PM
Rock River makes a good AR, as does Bushmaster, Colt, and quite a few others. Stay away from Olympic Arms.. horrible guns, gritty, bad triggers, bad quality.

June 13, 2010, 11:42 PM
Anybody have a link to that Bravo Company post? I looked quickly but nothing obvious turned up...

June 14, 2010, 12:21 AM
I've got a couple of officers with personally owned stags, del-ton M4gery builds etc. in the $750 range. I fired them all some, as we were zeroing their irons and dot sights. They all ran slick and shot well enough to connect bullet holes at 50 yards. Biggest limiting factor on them was their triggers, which universally sucked- but are easily (if not cheaply) upgraded. Bolt on sights for the M4 size examples were a little problematic too, as some didn't want to screw down quite far enough for proper zero. We fixed that with a file.

I've come to view this class of firearm in the same light I view entry-level 1911s. For the guy or gal who just wants one to bang away with, they are usually just fine. Any tweaking they need is easily accomplished.

June 14, 2010, 07:32 AM
I have had so many headaches over my M&P15's that I could never reccomend one to anyone. If I had it all to do over again, I would've shopped around for various parts and pieced it together myself. My smiths are on their way back to manufacturer due to failures to feed that could not be remedied. Watch the for sale section on this site or gunbroker and get a lower, then go from there. That's what I'm doin next time. These are the only firearms I've ever had to send back. They were fairly pricey, so Smith got a nice letter from me about how much more reliable my mini14 is.:p

June 14, 2010, 08:43 AM
Build your own.

June 14, 2010, 08:59 AM
The M4 types with the shorter faster twist barrels are accurate enough for me. If I was to choose between a 20" or 16" barrel I'd go 16. The difference between the two is smaller than the tidier package offered by the M4.
If you buy a package versus a build the company is behind you in the event of a "bug." You spend more but have a known skilled company that knows more about the rifle than you do.
If you build one you are on your own but might save money without a headache.

June 14, 2010, 10:40 AM
zombieslayer beat me to the punch.......

I was gonna say,'sorry another mini 14 thread soon to follow' ;)

June 14, 2010, 11:00 AM

I've never purchased from them, presented for info only. I doubt the AR I'm building could be documented as good, but I'm not planning to be shot at daily anymore.

June 14, 2010, 11:18 AM
If you know what you're doing, you can build a better gun rather than buying a stock gun. Custom is always better.

June 14, 2010, 11:23 AM
Finally found the BCM post. Here it is if anyone else was looking...


June 14, 2010, 12:47 PM
I've never ONCE read a reply/thread from a shooter who regreted buying a good quality AR.

I've read a ton and a half of threads from guys having problems with bottom feeder rifles.