My first AR

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by Galactic, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. Galactic

    Galactic New Member

    I am about to buy my first AR-15. This will also be the first rifle I have owned, not counting the Marlin 60 .22 I had almost 30 years ago. I want to be able to shoot out to 500 yards (eventually) or so as accurately as possible within my budget. Said budget is $1000ish.

    I really appreciate this forum and the information/opinions I have found here. I have lurked on the sight almost daily (and posted a few times) and I have read much of the information on the forum about the ARs. However I would like to get opinions on a specific rifle.

    I met the guys at FAST Firearms at the gun show in Gwinnett Saturday before last and spent a fair bit of time talking to them about what I wanted for my new rifle. They, Chris, were very helpful and informative and so I went to their shop in Lawrenceville and started getting information and prices. So far this is what I am looking at.

    Their FAST special is a Spike’s Full lower with DPMS parts (which is factory spike’s parts kit). The upper is Del-Ton with a chrome moly lined 16†barrel, with a 1in 9 twist. It also will come with a quad rail front handguard and a flip up rear sight. The price is right at $900.

    I have them looking into a 20†barrel with a 1:7 twist as I have read this will work better for the heavier rounds I will want to use for the longer range shooting.

    Oh, and I finally became a GCO member at the Gwinnett gun show. Yay!
  2. hammerg26

    hammerg26 Member

    Would definitely track down cdtracing... man has A LOT of knowledge....

  3. jgrant50

    jgrant50 New Member

    I just recently joined the AR-15 club myself. I picked up a Bushmaster M4A3 Patrolman from Adventure Outdoors on Black Friday (not that Friday made any difference pricewise). I paid $969 plus tax. So far I am more than happy. The Bushmaster is a quality weapon. It has the A3 style removable carry handle, M4 style feed ramps and a properly staked carrier key. I'm not sure about the feed ramps, but Bushmaster didn't have the best reputation in terms of key staking not so long ago, but it appears as though they've addressed the concern accordingly (I learned about this post purchase). I have read many great reviews on numerous manufacturers, but I found this one to be the best fit personally. Having said that, I'm already eyeballing a DPMS LR. Just have to figure out how to fly that one under the wife radar.

    So far I've picked up a 20 and 30 round Magpul PMAG. Ive got an Eotech 512, Magpul BUIS and A medium size Gunfighter charging handle on the way as well. Accessorizing is fun - but can be pricey as well. I'll also pick up a few zeroing targets to get everything dialed in. I didnt't have any official targets the first time I fired it, but I can tell you that beer can didn't stand a snowballs chance in hell.

    I'm sure you'll enjoy your purchase - good luck.
  4. Mrs_Esterhouse

    Mrs_Esterhouse Swollen Member

    Do a lot of research on M4carbine and AFCOM. I've shot quite a few ARs and have read tons of data on the specs. My opinion of the "best" in order: Noveske, LWRC, KAC, BCM, LMT, Colt. The rest aren't necessarily junk, but I choose not to bother with -lesser- products...

    You want a cold hammer forged (CHF) barrel if possible.
  5. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

    From what I hear from talking to experienced highpower rifle competitors, handloading is critical for long range accuracy.
    They say that's more imporant than a lot of other factors that have to do with the rifle.

    Unless you buy premium factory ammo loaded with top quality bullets. Expect to pay 75 cents to $1 per round for the good stuff.
    But on the other hand, these people don't just want to hit the black part of the bullseye at 500 or 600 yards.
    They want to hit the 10-ring or better. They want a 2 minute of angle group, fired from the prone position with a sling and with iron sights. So their demands for accuracy are high.

    All I can add from personal experience is that if you get an AR with a flat-top receiver and a detachable carry handle/ rear sight unit, you might find that there is not enough elevation in the rear sight to hold a proper sight picture at 500 or 600 yards. The fixed carry handle models don't have this problem.

    If you want the best accuracy and flattest-shooting bullets at long 400-600 yard range, get the 20" barrel.
    Those extra four inches of barrel will burn more of the gunpowder and push your bullet faster, extending the "flat" part of your range before your bullet starts dropping like a stone.
  6. EmergencyNrse

    EmergencyNrse Member

    I'm pretty sure the US Army Shooting Team is using the 20" 1:7 AR's to shoot 75gr
    hand loaded rounds out to 1000 yards. And they do it well with iron sights.
    (Yea, .223 out to 1000!)
    The problem with their loads are that the cartridges wont fit into the magazines
    and you have to single load them every shot. There are some good shooters down
    there @ Ft. Benning.
  7. Mrs_Esterhouse

    Mrs_Esterhouse Swollen Member

    I forgot to mention, please do not buy a "carbine" length gas system. I'm not talking about barrel length but rather gas port distance. You want to keep the system pressure down. Opt for a mid-length or full length gas system instead.
  8. EJR914

    EJR914 Cheezburger Operator

    A few years ago you could buy a very nice Daniel Defense AR-15 from Clyde's Armory in Athens, GA for around one grand. Its a very fine AR, IMHO.
  9. Galactic

    Galactic New Member

    Thanks for the responses.

    So far I have continued to research on here, and a LEO sight I can't remember for now but is in my bookmarks. I am definitely going with the 20" 1:7, chrome moly lined barrel, M4 feed ramp and flat top. Once I get this rifle under control and have shot it a bit I intend to try my hand at reloading. If for no other reason than to keep my latest hobby cost low.

    I think I am going to go with no fixed sights and get flip up rear and front for a clear view through any optics. I will add a red dot for shorter range plinking and a good scope for the long range fun.

    I saw a Rock River Arms varmint rifle that looked nice. Very sleek. And had most if not all the things I am looking for, including as a bonus a 2 stage trigger as part of the base cost. It was not railed on the bottom of the handguard though and I am looking at a vertical foregrip with pop out bipod. Though I may forgo this for the sleeker look. :)

    Man you really can spend some $$$ on accessories. My budget seems to keep stretching.
  10. SongDogSniper

    SongDogSniper New Member

    Yep, that exactly what I did too. Bought the S&W MP-15 flattop about six months ago while the deals were good with the $100 rebate, for like $599. Added the Troy flip-down Battle Sights front and rear. The intent was to have it with me as a patrol rifle, but also be able to throw a scope on it in some quick detach mounts and use it in the field if desired.
    I am thinking I may throw an AimPoint on it down the line one day.

    Good luck finding the right rifle.