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Old August 3, 2017, 08:05 AM   #26
CDR_Glock
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Originally Posted by Theeuroguy View Post
I have decided to buy my first AR-15, will probably be my only one. I am only interested in a complete model. I have seen the S&W for as low as $499. I have also looked at Windham Weaponry and the Double Star Patrol model. Gun buyer.com has a Colt LE6920 Magpul for $765.00, more expensive than I wanted to spend, but my son-in-law policeman says that it is a great price for that AR. Thoughts? Sorry for the long post!


You need to get your hands on them. See how it fits your body. See what the trigger feels like, though you can replace that with an aftermarket later.

I personally prefer flat tops.

Bear in mind, anything in an AR can be replaced with aftermarket parts.

Prices are so low for ARs these days. They all shoot well and only when you go Uber expensive will anything make a dramatic difference.

I have AR pistols, carbines, mid and long barrels, in 300 AAC, 5.56 mm, 223 Wylde and 6.5 Grendel.

Nothing in a gun is permanent.


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Old August 3, 2017, 09:23 AM   #27
shootbrownelk
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I'll second Doofus's recommendation of Palmetto State Armory. Lots to choose from. I saw some on bud's for under $400.00 on sale awhile ago.
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Old August 4, 2017, 11:28 AM   #28
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I bought my first AR last year in fear of Hillary. After much shopping and discussions with some of my AR buddies I bought a 20" Rock River A4. Bare weight 8.1 lb. Added a Nikon scope and mount. Thing weighs a ton but is very accurate. I got the carry handle for it too and will try it when I have a good load for it. I wanted a full size rifle, this one has a 2 stage trigger, about 4.5 lb pull.
The whole package isn't what I thought it would be. NOW, I'm putting one together with a Ruger lower(also has a 2 stage trigger) and a 16" Rock River upper, will put a Bushnell TRS 25 red dot on it. Trying to put it together on the cheap and still be able to hit with it. Total will be under 700.00 grand total. The real question in my mind is the Ruger lower.
My 2 cents is that it's impossible to choose exactly what you want until you start shooting the gun. It's fun to experiment with them.
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Old August 4, 2017, 12:01 PM   #29
kenny53
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I bought the M&P Sport a few years ago. Very happy with it. I would buy another M&P AR again. Good gun , good price.
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Old August 4, 2017, 04:38 PM   #30
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Pete2-when you get your Ruger lower/AR sorted out please post the results.
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Old August 4, 2017, 05:29 PM   #31
rickyrick
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Pete2, I'm fairly new to ARs as well (2014), but I've been hunting and shooting for a while. My first AR was purchased in anticipation of another panic. It's a 16" PSA kit on an Anderson stripped lower. It was a good gun, useful for many endeavors.
Prices began to drop. I realized that I can purpose-build rifles and uppers to fill some niche scenario that my mind dreamed up so I did.
I believe that I could've made due with that first AR and it's stock components if prices remained the same. Today is a great time, I've got different calibers now, fancy triggers fancy bolt or two and stuff lying around tempting me. Even got some "fancy" free float tubes installed that I swore I'd never buy, mwuhahahahahaha the evil temptress of the UPS truck. I've stopped now... but the itch doesn't.
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Old August 5, 2017, 09:06 AM   #32
ed308
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Thanks for the many thoughtful replies! To try and put the question in a little better perspective: I am 62 but only been shooting about a year. I have 3 9mm semi-automatics, for home defense and cc. I also have a 12 gauge shotgun for home defense. My purpose in getting an AR is more want than need, to be honest. Not many 4 legged varmits here in the DFW Metroplex, not much in long range shooting, unless I go out with my son-in-law. Just want a good solid AR. I know I can get by with a lesser one than the Colt, but..."want vs. need." Thanks again for all of the help!

All the ones you mentioned are good for a first AR. But I'm not a fan of the Colt or some of the other mentioned due to the carbine gas system, chrome lined barrel and 5.56 chamber. I prefer mine with a .223 Wylde chamber (better accuracy), mid length gas systems (smoother and less wear) and melonite treated (better rust protection and accuracy).

And for long range shooting the DFW area, head up to Fossil Pointe in Decatur. Nice out door range where you can shoot both pistol and rifle for $18 a day. Rifle ranges are 50, 100 and 200 yards. They also have rifle out to 800 for $35 a day.
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Old August 5, 2017, 10:18 PM   #33
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Ed...

I agree that midlength is superior, but for $750, the Colt is a good way to go. They make their rifles well. If I was to buy a carbine length gas system AR, it would probably be a Colt before anything else.

A quality 5.56 chrome lined barrel is going to be more accurate than most people need or can use. Colt has a reputation for accurate barrels too. (as well as some others)

Its not uncommon for a quality 5.56 CL barrel to get down to 1 moa with reliable repeatability with quality ammo, and 1.5 moa is basically the new standard with good ammo. If my rifle can pull off 2 moa with cheap FMJ, I'm pretty happy.
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Old August 7, 2017, 12:13 AM   #34
flyboy015
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I bought my first AR about four months back, from Palmetto State Armory. Honestly, I couldn't be happier. It's seen a little over 1000 rounds and has never had a single malfunction. If you're not familiar with PSA, you should at least check their website out. Great prices, sales every week, there's something for everyone. Most of their barrels are a 1/7, I went with a 1/8 to better handle lower weight rounds, down around the 40?-50gr range, and a mid-length setup, which has been a pleasure to shoot. 16" medium profile nitrided barrel.

On top of that, their completed lowers often come with stock options that are at such good prices, you couldn't build them yourself for $10 cheaper. My complete lower, with a Magpul STR stock, was $150. The biggest downfall though, is waiting times. They buy, sell and ship by volume, so depending how busy they are, your order can take up to a month for delivery to your door or FFL. My completed upper took about a week and half, the lower took around two weeks. Not bad for $470 IMHO!
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Old August 7, 2017, 08:09 AM   #35
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PSA, SW Sport II, and Colt are all great. I have a PSA that I got on sale for around $490. If you go SW go with the sport II over the regular one. You probably get the most bang for your buck if you buy a kit with PSA.
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Old August 7, 2017, 11:24 AM   #36
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I have a nephew who is in the market for an AR. Although I have no personal experience (I'm an AK guy right now)I've been doing some research on his behalf. Dollar for dollar it looks the S&W sport II wins every "entry level" review/comparison.

If you go up a little in price then the field really opens up; Savage has a new offering with a Wylde chamber that is getting good reviews. You can even get an affordable piston driven AR from Adams Arms. Don't even get in a discussion with the builder guys, the choices will make your head swim.

It's a great time to be buying an AR. I might make the switch myself.
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Old August 7, 2017, 01:23 PM   #37
roashooter
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Just prior to the elections last November...and the real threat that HC was going to be the next POTUS...our local Cabelas put ARs on sale.
We did not need one...didn't really have an interest in ARs...(I had one back in the 70s..when you had one choice only...a Colt) but we bought one just to add to the statistics of ARs being sold pre election. My wife shoots a CZ 527 carbine in 5.56/223...so it was more or less a rifle for her. It is the S&W Sport 2, has functioned 100%...put a NIkon p223 scope on it...she enjoys shooting it. But says it will NEVER replace her CZ.
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Old August 7, 2017, 01:26 PM   #38
rickyrick
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I'm gonna venture to say that anything from the reputable makers is going too be good to go.
The AR market is pretty much deciding what kind of AR you want and buying it. If you want an entry level carbine, then it's pretty much a decision of which logo do you want to pay for the most.
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Old August 7, 2017, 05:37 PM   #39
pete2
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Dale A. I have the Ruger lower and the RRA upper now. I was concerned there might be some looseness but they go together very tightly. The lower has Magpul stock and hand grip, I may get a Magpul forend for it, I like the looks. The Ruger 2 stage trigger seems great compared to the GI style. Weighs in at 4-1/2 lbs as advertised. Sight should be here tomorrow, hopefully will shoot it Wed. Weighs 7lb 2oz with a steel 20 mag. in it. Will use an aluminum mag and reweigh it after I put on the TRS. So far So good.
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Old August 7, 2017, 07:00 PM   #40
lunger
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Quote:
I'm gonna venture to say that anything from the reputable makers is going too be good to go.
The AR market is pretty much deciding what kind of AR you want and buying it. If you want an entry level carbine, then it's pretty much a decision of which logo do you want to pay for the most.
Common sense advise there.

I am still shooting my SW Sport I. But any of the current makers will be good for most users.
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Old August 7, 2017, 08:51 PM   #41
Kvon2
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BIG stag arms fan here...they can be pricey though.
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Old August 8, 2017, 08:43 AM   #42
ilmonster
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Your needs seem to be similar to mine. I just wanted an AR as an all around rifle, mostly a range toy. I agree with the other posters who said you can't go wrong with the $750 Colt AR. No more solid rifle than that. Also as others have said, a BCM AR is equally solid (properly staked gas key screws, MP tested barrel and bolt, shot peened bolt, barrel under front sight phosphated, 1:7 twist barrel, etc. as with the Colt). I own a BCM Mod. 0 and have 2000+ rounds through it with zero issues. Only mods are an AimPoint PRO red dot and a Magpull sling. Going to shoot an AR competition this weekend with it and put a few more hundred rds. downrange. You'll love the AR platform! Let us know what you decide.

Last edited by ilmonster; August 8, 2017 at 10:51 AM.
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Old August 8, 2017, 11:23 AM   #43
langenc
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Buy once cry once... You have decided to only get ONE so no problem. Wjhat is a couple hundred bucks-it is only money.

Get one w/ a 1:8 barrel not 1:9 and that may save you problems w/ heavier bullets. Say you wont use em--dont bet on it now. Im not sure why makers insist on 1:9..
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Old August 8, 2017, 06:38 PM   #44
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If I were going to get just one AR to plink with, truck carry/ general use, I think I'd go with PSA. They are good products and I have never had trouble with any. I just ordered another rifle from them myself. Had a Bushnell TRS25 on a QD riser, a MI rear sight and a Phantom flash hider just sitting around in the safe. I ordered a Magpul blemished(as usual I couldn't find it) complete lower for $149.99. Then a few week later there was the Freedom Stainless 1/7 midlength upper and BCG for 249.99. $419.98 for complete rifle including FFL fee. Free shipping on both orders. Solid rifle with some upgrades for a really good price, and it shoots well to top it all off. Just have to keep tabs on the Daily/Weekend deals.
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Old August 8, 2017, 09:45 PM   #45
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First, this is maybe the best time in history to buy an AR. The market is saturated and you can get them in some cases for 1/2 price of what you would have paid last year.


Second, you have to decide what you want it for. If it's for plinking, a cheap carbean would be fine. If it's for longer distance (300+ yrds) and plinking, you will want at least a mid length (18") or probably better yet a 20" heavy barrel .

DPMS makes a relatively inexpensive heavy bull barrel AR.
I have a Ruger SR 556 Varmint barrel piston driven AR.

The colt LE is a decent all around Rifle for a carbean. The varmint AR's will cost more, but it is fun hitting clay pigeons or coyotes at 300 yards. My Varmint AR is moa at 600 Yards.

You might check out the Ruger AR 556. Inexpensive, accurate hammer forged barrel, and Ruger customer service.

But, I have a feeling, if you buy one, you will want another.

Also, don't worry too much about features initially. If you get a colt LE, you can get a better trigger later if you don't like the factory trigger. You can get a different pistol grip, butt stock, rails, optics etc. So don't pay for a bunch of stuff initially until you know what you want
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Old August 10, 2017, 09:06 AM   #46
Justice06RR
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The Smith and Wesson M&P15 Sport II is an excellent buy for under $600. It has all the features you will need, as they have improved it over the first model. Smith and Wesson also has a great warranty and customer service should you need it.

You can use some of the savings towards ammo and magazines. Even a good optic if your eyes are not too good.

I have owned the Colt6920, M&P Sport I, and many Palmetto AR builds. In my experience they are all on par, mostly for your average shooter. It will all depend on your budget and preference.

If you have $800 to spend, get the Colt. If you just want a good first AR15 that is affordable, get the S&W.
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Old August 10, 2017, 10:24 AM   #47
pete2
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I took the Ruger/Rock to the range yesterday. It works just fine, I shot some Federal 55gr. in it , groups about like I expected but I won't be able to hold like with a scope. I figure I'm giving away some with the red dot sight. Overall, I'm pleased with it, now to try it at 100 and 200 Yards.
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Old August 11, 2017, 12:49 AM   #48
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Pete2--Thanks for the update. I'm a semi-fan for Ruger and am interested in how your build went. Looks like the upper mated to the lower just like it should (and would be expected to). Good for Ruger. A Ruger AR just might be in my future. Thanks for the update.
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Old August 11, 2017, 12:54 AM   #49
DaleA
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First, this is maybe the best time in history to buy an AR.
Mississippi, IMhO, you may be right.

Ha, Ha. Hillary Clinton potential presidency might have been the best gun sales point since Barack Obama but Hillary's loss sure is making a new AR an attractive acquisition.

The gun grabbers just can't win. (Well hopefully.)
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Old August 14, 2017, 01:38 PM   #50
Theeuroguy
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Thanks again to everyone for the many helpful suggestions. Just saw that PSA has one on sale for $459.99. SKU/UPC number 516446600. Looks "similar" to the Colt, not FDE. Think I might just pull the trigger when I get home from work.
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