View Full Version : My 1st ar15

September 14, 2012, 09:11 AM
I want to buy my 1st AR15. It will be for plinking around, target shooting amongst friends (No tournament or serious competition shooting) and maybe a little small game from time to time.
I am not interested in any custom builds. I just want a good quality, bang for the buck, none jamming AR. I am willing to spend anywhere from $800---$1200 for it.
What brands would you suggest and which ones should I stay away from?

September 14, 2012, 09:14 AM
Smith & Wesson in the $650-$800 range (M&P Sport or T for an out of the box shooter), Colt 6920 in the $1,000-$1,100 range. Can't go wrong with either. Budget in ammo and a carrying case as well. Good luck!

Mr. Davis
September 14, 2012, 09:18 AM
If you're really willing to spend $1,200, buy a top-tier rifle from Colt, BCM, or Daniel Defense.

If you only want to spend at the low end of the spectrum and all you want is a range toy, just buy whatever suits your fancy.

September 14, 2012, 09:33 AM
You can put together something from Palmetto State Armory with a barreled upper, stripped lower, lower parts kit, and sights for less than $700.... and get exactly what you want, nothing you don't.


While much of their stuff is out of stock at any given time, check back, as inventory turns over very fast there.... they sell a lot of EBRs.

September 14, 2012, 11:18 AM
Buy a M&P Sport for $600-$700 and spend the rest on ammo.

That way you will have so much more practice with your rifle and when shooting amongst friends, you can make fun of them for shooting a rifle that cost twice as much, just as good or bad as you do. All in fun. :D

September 14, 2012, 11:45 AM
I bought a S&W Sport and love it, it is as reliable as they come and more accurate that a lot of them. I have about 1500 rounds through it with no failures of any kind. The gun club I belong to has a range out to 300 yards and my Sport will shoot as good as any of them and better than a lot of them.

September 14, 2012, 03:37 PM
Have you thought about a Bushmaster M-4? I have one that will accept both the 5.56 and the .223 round. My rifle has never missed a beat and is very accurate.

September 14, 2012, 07:14 PM
you can spend 1200 on a Colt, BCM, or Daniel Defense...or less than 900 on a Spikes that will perform just as well...or spend 600-700 on an M&P and, from what I read, is also a darn good AR

September 14, 2012, 09:25 PM
The Rock River operator deals right now are great. You get a lot of stuff for the money.

September 14, 2012, 10:27 PM
BTW - I saw on facebook that Primary Arms has a 10 free PMags with a purchase of a complete AR purchase. Might be worth to take a look.


Hope the link works.

September 15, 2012, 06:50 AM
That PA sale is a good deal. A Spikes LE M4gery with 10 pmags for $880 is a damn good deal. It's mil-spec and a life time warranty.

The Scientist
September 15, 2012, 09:15 AM
Another vote for the RRA Operator. Wait time is a while (mine took 4 mos this year), but well worth it. These are well built rifles. And in your price range.

September 17, 2012, 12:05 AM
If you had a budget of up to $1200, why not go ahead and get a quality rifle from BCM or Colt. If you don't plan to modify it so much, then those are excellent options. Plenty accurate, reliable, and will do anything you ask it and more

September 17, 2012, 03:06 PM
I agree with those who say if you're willing to spend a little over $1000 then go with BCM, Colt or Daniel Defense. I have BCM and DD midlengths and am pleased with the extra quality, especially the attention to little details that lower end builders ignore. Look at the detailed specs to a BCM, then go to other websites and play the guessing game with Bushmaster, DPMS and others.

As far as what to avoid, I'd stay clear of any $700 and under AR unless you catch a deal on a S&W M&P-15 Sport. And if you decide to go under $1000 then PSA is the way to go, maybe Spikes or Sionics.

Coltman 77
September 17, 2012, 03:52 PM
Another vote for Colt, DD or BCM. Good luck OP. :)

September 19, 2012, 07:57 AM
Daniel Defense, Noveske, Larue, Colt, Spikes, S&W, BCM are all >= mil-spec.
There are MANY more reputable AR builders out there.

So it all depends on what you want regarding features and technology. For example:

Receiver options: Billet or Forged

Gas System options: DI, Adjustable DI (Noveske switch block or Syrac AGB), or Gas Piston-all of which are reliable.

Bolt Carrier Group: Chrome Plated, Nitrocarburized QPQ, NiCor

Barrel: Stainless Steel (416R or the better 410), Cold Hammer Forged Chrome Lined (BCM, DD, Noveske, Spikes, Colt), Melonite SS or 4140/4150 (custom barrels).

Gas System Length: Carbine, Mid-Length, Rifle Length (mid and rifle length have the smoothest recoil impulse).

September 23, 2012, 05:50 PM
Smith and Wesson M&P 15 Sport....great AR for the money!!!:D

September 23, 2012, 06:24 PM
I have a colt and bushmaster... I prefer the bushmaster lower paired with colt upper. I vote bushmaster if you want a nice commercial AR and Colt or Daniel Defense for a top tier milspec AR. I think milspec is extremely over rated though.

September 26, 2012, 05:34 PM
I have to echo what other members have said.If you can spend around $1200 go with a Colt or Bravo Company. I haven't seen too many Daniel Defense for less than $1500.Alot of people like the S&W Sport but know that it has no forward assist or dust cover.You may also want to look at Wyndham Weaponry they can be had for $799 and are owned by the original owner of Bushmaster and are built in the old Bushmaster facility.You also get a lifetime warranty. Spike's are nice but can be tough to find. I recently bought a Colt LE6920MP-FDE and I love it.

September 26, 2012, 08:57 PM
There are many options but I would go with a colt,stag,or bushmaster:cool:

September 27, 2012, 07:51 AM
Love my Spikes Tactical middy. Got it for $769 delivered from AimSuplus. These are hard to find and AS only gets a few at a time...so they sell out in minutes. You can register and have them email you when they come in. Have your credit card ready.


September 27, 2012, 09:45 AM
Ok. So the only reason I left Spike's out of my first post was because I didn't think you could find them anywhere. Here's my middie, 14.5" CHF with pinned Dynacomp, M16 BCG, and MOE furniture. Just under $900. Great AR with a limited production FL lower roll mark (Spike's home state) from a group buy. I didn't realize it until after the fact but that's my M&P PMAG stuffed in there.


Billy the Kidder
September 27, 2012, 09:00 PM
I have been happy with My Rock River Arms tactical operator 2. Got it at the Camp Perry matches for $790, no waiting. Right place at the right time.

September 27, 2012, 09:22 PM
I like my Rock River National Match rifle a lot. The N.M. 2-stage trigger will spoil you. Their lifetime warranty is another reason to consider RRA.

September 29, 2012, 01:34 PM
My first was a S&W M&P, and i LOVE it. Loads of fun to shoot, and no problems. Then i got the Ruger piston operated unit, Just to compare. (okay, I have a gun Habit ) Love it too. no problems. very smooth operator, stays cool longer when I go through a lot of rounds faster than normal. Lastly, (so far) I got a Rock River, and I really like it too, it's heavier than the S&W, but comfortable in my hands. Doesn't matter what gun I have in my hands, if I have a gun in my hands, I'm havin' FUN ! But if I went back and started over again, I'd start with the RRA, only because of Price. It's every bit of gun that the others are, but cost less.
And I bet a couple boxes of ammo, once you get one, you'll want another !!