PDA

View Full Version : purchasing 1st AR


jdm*fiend
06-11-2012, 5:44 PM
I'm sure you've all probably seen this a million times and are probably tired of these types of post but I could use a little help here.........I'm looking to buy my first AR platform rifle and am looking to spend $1500. My choices so far are between Adams Arms, Colt 6940, Daniel Defense, or the Sig Sauer 516. Mainly want it for target shooting and home defense incase like everyone says SHTF situation so I need an accurate and reliable rifle. Any advice would help greatly. I would spend more just find it hard to justify paying $2gs to $3gs. Thank you and happy shooting

ohnozombeez
06-11-2012, 6:14 PM
Any of the ones you mentioned are fine close to your price rang.

S470FM
06-11-2012, 7:09 PM
I'd recommend the Colt (6920 or 6940) as your first AR as it is a fine rifle and it's a Colt. The Sig 516 has proprietary parts so unless you want to buy Sig-specific parts for it, I'd go to something that's mil-spec.

anymoose
06-11-2012, 7:23 PM
I'd go for the DD.

I'll throw this out there though- my spikes has been great, life time warranty, zero issues, 100% milspec, im shooting 2MOA with military ammo, and it was only $1100. You could have a spikes and an aimpoint pro with your budget.

jdm*fiend
06-11-2012, 8:30 PM
Thanks for the input, ill really take them into consideration. I will say though I held the sig 516 and really liked it, looked like a well built rifle. Did not know it was proprietary, so does that mean I cant use stuff like magpul or is that just for internal parts

anymoose
06-11-2012, 8:35 PM
It's mostly internal, so you an still make your rifle look cool. The problems will come up if you have to rely on the rifle though.

http://www.ak47.net/forums/t_3_126/554566_Sig_will_NOT_sell_spare_parts_for_their_516 _.html

If it was a "spare" gun, I wouldn't mind it, but for HD/ SHTF rifle, there's no way I would rely on hopes of perfect function.

Guapoh
06-11-2012, 8:41 PM
You might consider a piston gun such as the Ruger SR556 or an LWRC M6A1SL. These are $1500 shooters with all of the advantages of a piston gun.

jdm*fiend
06-12-2012, 6:41 AM
Does anyone have personal experience with the sig 516

ohnozombeez
06-12-2012, 7:23 AM
As s470fm said, it's propietery parts. My friend has one and is really nice. It's a sig of course!!! Most of the rifles out of the box have lifetime warranties on them, so you might wanna but that into consideration.

IPSICK
06-12-2012, 8:18 AM
JP Rifles JP-15 LE $1499 (http://www.jprifles.com/1.2.2_JP15LE.php)

http://www.jprifles.com/jp_galleries/317.jpg

OR for $200 more with a better barrel (sub-MOA accuracy) and handguard

JP Rifles JP-15 D $1699 (http://www.jprifles.com/1.2.2_JP15D.php)

http://www.jprifles.com/jp_galleries/310.jpg

Both rifles above will come with a better trigger than most any rifle available (IMO better than any of the Geissele triggers) and do a search on JP's on this forum and you will see how highly regarded they are. If you think it isn't tactical enough, realize that JP is the premier choice of Kyle Lamb of Viking Tactics.

krisjon
06-12-2012, 8:24 AM
If it's your first rifle, go with the Colt and spend the rest on ammo. If you want to spend a little more of that cash, Daniel Defense is the best choice of the others you mentioned.

ZX-10R
06-12-2012, 9:14 AM
DD or Colt...Though I am 100% satisfied by my DD M4 which has been a solid and a consistent 1-1.5 MOA shooter.

h0use
06-12-2012, 9:45 AM
how about build your own with the stuff you want on it?

ohnozombeez
06-12-2012, 11:37 AM
JP Rifles JP-15 LE $1499 (http://www.jprifles.com/1.2.2_JP15LE.php)

http://www.jprifles.com/jp_galleries/317.jpg

OR for $200 more with a better barrel (sub-MOA accuracy) and handguard

JP Rifles JP-15 D $1699 (http://www.jprifles.com/1.2.2_JP15D.php)

http://www.jprifles.com/jp_galleries/310.jpg

Both rifles above will come with a better trigger than most any rifle available (IMO better than any of the Geissele triggers) and do a search on JP's on this forum and you will see how highly regarded they are. If you think it isn't tactical enough, realize that JP is the premier choice of Kyle Lamb of Viking Tactics.

I like it........I like both.....dang it now i want another AR!!!

IPSICK
06-12-2012, 11:42 AM
I like it........I like both.....dang it now i want another AR!!!

Buy a JP and you're never gonna consider another brand of AR ever again!

SFgiants105
06-12-2012, 12:14 PM
Stag Model 8.
http://www.riflegear.com/p-728-stag-arms-model-8-piston-rifle.aspx

I don't own one, but it is the next upper I plan to get. Piston ARs are not better or worse than DI guns; many people who own DI ARs try to come up with ways that they are better than piston ARs, but so far the only credible advantages that DIs have over piston is that they are slightly lighter and that the gas block is lower (might not even be a real advantage).

As far as the piston system weighing more than a DI tube, I couldn't imagine the weight difference being more than a couple of ounces.

That being said, the maintenance of a piston gun will be a lot easier, which will eventually transfer over into the functioning reliability of the weapon.

Get one of these for it (POF roller cam pin); I have heard nothing but good things about these. They will drop right in and improve the functioning of any AR, piston or DI.

http://www.pof-usa.com/parts/arparts.htm

jdm*fiend
06-12-2012, 5:04 PM
Any other suggestions. There are so many makes out my head is just spinning. Whether to go piston or di? Anybody have experience with several of the models listed, not just one that can give me input on which rifle felt better than the other and whether piston does run cleaner? Which is easier to maintain?

scglock
06-12-2012, 6:03 PM
Those are all good choices

IPSICK
06-12-2012, 7:38 PM
Any other suggestions. There are so many makes out my head is just spinning. Whether to go piston or di? Anybody have experience with several of the models listed, not just one that can give me input on which rifle felt better than the other and whether piston does run cleaner? Which is easier to maintain?

So what qualitative experiences are you looking for? Like I said in my suggestion, the JP trigger is second to none with a very short pull and very short reset. The only trigger I know of that will beat it is a $300 AR Gold. The barrel in the JP15D is similar to the one on my rifle and mine has shot below 1/2-MOA. The one controversial part that comes on the JPs is an adjustable gas block. It lets you tailor the gas system to your ammo load for better reliability and better recoil impulse. It is controversial because some fear the adjustment screw may move during use which can be fixed with Loctite (I don't Loctite and my JP has been 100% reliable). I tailor my gas block for function with the loads I use the most. Some people adjust for one load and find later that it needs more gas for another ammo load. If you don't feel like messing with the block, JP ships it in the most reliable setting possible and the recoil impulse is still pretty nice.

I've messed round with other people's rifles and the factory triggers were heavy and/or gritty. Additionally, their barrels were nowhere near as accurate as my JP. I'm not sure what handguard comes on the other rifles you're considering, but you do have to add the rails yourself to the JP handguard. However, you get to place them nearly wherever you like. You don't have to have a handguard covered in cheese grater rails nor do you have to place rail covers over the rail spaces you don't use.

SFgiants105
06-12-2012, 7:50 PM
Any other suggestions. There are so many makes out my head is just spinning. Whether to go piston or di? Anybody have experience with several of the models listed, not just one that can give me input on which rifle felt better than the other and whether piston does run cleaner? Which is easier to maintain?

They all feel the same. 5.56/.223 AR platforms are all built to the same specs on the lower receiver, and uppers are all very similar. The only differences you will really feel are the triggers; stock triggers, especially on carbines will not be all that great (you should definitely not make your decision based on the trigger). Also, different rifles come with different stocks, but unless you are really picky, or have odd shoulder dimensions, any stock will be fine.

The way an AR will feel depends on how it is configured; ARs can be set up as anything between carbines or full-length precision rifles. The more you tack onto your rifle, the more it will weigh, which can be cumbersome especially if you don't plan on exclusively shooting it off a bench.

There are basically three types of handguards you can have on an AR: plastic military style (usually on 16" barrels or smaller), aluminum tube (sometimes carbon fiber; these only fit on DI gas systems, and are typically used for hunting/precision), or quad rail (these tend to be heavier; has picatinny rails at 12, 3, 6, and 9 o'clock).

For your first AR, I would recommend a 16" rifle with carbine-length, plastic handguards. It doesn't really matter which brand you get. I would recommend, however, that you make sure you get a rifle chambered in 5.56x45 NATO and not in .223 Rem. The reason I say this is that barrels chambered in 5.56 NATO can handle .223 Rem cartridges, but not the other way around. Shooting .223 through a 5.56 barrel will be a little less accurate, since the bore is larger by 0.001 inch in diameter, but it isn't that big of a deal.

My first AR was a 24" Remington R15 chambered in .223 Rem. It has a direct impingement gas system; even though I love that rifle, it is very limited. It cannot accept iron sights (I doubt many ARs have that same issue, though), it is a pain to clean on account of its DI gas system, I can't buy 5.56 ammunition for it, and it is heavy as all hell (it has a full-length aluminum tube-style handguard).

Direct impingement systems utilize the gas pressure from a fired cartridge, which is expended through a gas port in the barrel, to push back the bolt carrier group via the gas key (this is located on top of the bolt carrier). What makes this problematic is that all of the gas from the burned powder is dumped into the receiver and fouls up literally everything inside the gun, from the bolt to the trigger. This means you have to diligently clean the AR more so than other rifles and you have to keep it lubed at all times.

An AR with a piston gas system works similarly in the sense that the gas pressure is used to actuate the bolt. The difference is that when the gas escapes the barrel through the gas port, there is a piston at the end of the gas block (as opposed to a hollow tube that leads to the receiver) which is pushed back into the bolt. The momentum of the piston is transferred to the bolt and the rest works just like a normal AR. The effect of this system is that all of the carbon fouling that would have been released into the receiver in a DI system is released into the top, front end of the handguard (so basically, away from all of the moving parts). This makes the piston AR immensely easier to clean than a direct impingement AR.

Some people claim that the piston system alone makes the AR more reliable, but this is not true. The momentum of the bolt is the same in the piston system, in order to preserve the compatibility of DI internals. The piston system is a short-stroke piston system, which means that the piston rod is pushed back a short distance and essentially bumps the bolt carrier (where the gas key would normally be) to transfer just enough momentum to cycle it. The piston system on an AK-47 (or any AK style weapon) is a long-stroke system, which means that the piston rod is attached to the bolt carrier and travels the full distance of the action. This means that the bolt is moving back with more force and that helps prevent jams. Also, the shape of an AK receiver is conducive to less jams; there are looser tolerances in the receiver, and the contact surface area of the bcg to the receiver is smaller than that in an AR. The bolt in an AR is round and makes contact within the entire receiver, which is shaped to perfectly fit the bolt. The receiver inside of an AK has slide rails (just like on a semi-auto pistol), so any dirt or grime inside there has a lot of space to wiggle out of the way of the bolt as it cycles. Also, the hinge style magazines mate more solidly to the receiver than the drop style mags you find in AR style platforms. You will find that your AR will function more reliably with certain magazines.



I know you asked for brevity, and my response was verbose, but let me give you a simple answer. Any 16" piston AR-15 chambered in 5.56 NATO with iron sights will be a good first gun. You should get a gun with a minimal amount of furniture, since you can always add 5h!t later on.

Oh yeah, and don't get a quad rail. They look really cool and seem functional, but they are heavy and useless unless you plan on doing operations at night (which require an IR laser, flashlight, night vision).

Let us know what you end up getting.

gregshin
06-12-2012, 7:54 PM
Dd would be my choice from ur list

jdm*fiend
06-12-2012, 9:16 PM
WOW!!! Thanks, I dont mind it at all any info I can get is a plus. If there are any other suggestions that be great thank u all

S2V
06-12-2012, 9:31 PM
I was in the same dilemma... Colt or DD. I chose DD! Great company, super high quality craftmanship and just plain awesome!!

dinosauraphael
06-12-2012, 9:40 PM
i would chose Ruger sr 556e. Probably someone is laughing their *** off now cuz i bought a $1200+ ruger, but trust me this is probably one of the best gas piston AR 15 in it's price range. The gas system is adjustable, i've shot pmc, xm185, xm855 and i have never had a single jam of any sort after 1000 rounds. And because it's a gas piston gun, i could be lazy with cleaning it. There are times that i took it to the range without cleaning it, and it worked flawlessly.

jdm*fiend
06-12-2012, 10:38 PM
Hey dinosauraphael, Ive read somewhere that the ruger gets so hot that the quad rail gets to hot to hold, and that its even been heard that the plastics u put on the rail have even melted. Is this true? Curious. How much was this rifle. Is it a mil spec configiration?

dinosauraphael
06-12-2012, 11:45 PM
Yes it is mil spec. And it gets hot if you shoot 300+ rounds in like maybe within 2 hours on a hot sunny day, but only the front part of the rail (closer to the gas block) gets hot enough to burn you. If anything this is the only draw back of the 556e, but you could easily fix that by putting rails and some good rail covers.

However, I took a carbine class with stan last weekend and I didn't have any rail covers or anything and it did get warm, but didn't burn me or anything. I think not leaving it under the sun probably makes some effect, and seems like different ammo and different gas block setting could affect the temp. too. I got it for $1300ish outta the door at turners. You can probably find a better price if look around !

Honestly sometimes I wonder why I picked the ruger, but I'm darn happy with the sr 556e and an acog ta 11

6mmintl
06-13-2012, 6:21 AM
The Sig Sauer 516 and the Colt 6940 16" barreled guns are not target rifles, they are 50-100yard knock down doors or bayonet range rifles. I dont know what model adam arms or Daniel Defence rifles your interested in buy a standard A$ configuration rifle is a target rifle out to 1000 yards with minor rework of sights, trigger,and handloads.

cheapo
06-13-2012, 6:37 AM
JD Machine might be a good choice aswell. They are located in San Diego.

jdm*fiend
06-13-2012, 7:16 AM
What do u mean theyre not target rifles? dont really understand.. Also if I did get a colt which would be better the 6920 or 6940

Agent Tikki
06-13-2012, 10:21 AM
Wrote a little ditty just for you....


http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=555451


enjoy.

Arnelcheeze
06-13-2012, 12:07 PM
Love my stag 8, but would get a Colt if i were gonna get another one.

problemchild
06-13-2012, 12:09 PM
Build it yourself. You will get a gun built just the way you like it.

Mega upper/lower
JP low mass BCG/bolt
JP adj gas block
Raineer arms or white oaks barrel
Samson or other front rail system
Magpul stock and grip
mil-spec extension tube
low mass or standard buffer
Geislee trigger
Surefire brake

jdm*fiend
06-13-2012, 11:13 PM
OK so after a lot of researching i think ive come to a decision. i think i may pick up a Daniels Defense only thing now is, if u guys could help me out with this. whats the difference between a carbine and a mid length? what are advantages or disadvantages to each? i like the M4V4 and M4V5 models. i dont like the fixed front sight on the other models. also they have a M4V5 lightweight model, i guess the barrel is lighter. is that better or worse? thanks for all the help guys

tacticalcity
06-13-2012, 11:31 PM
First, let me say Daniel Defense is an excellent brand with a strong reputation. So excellent choice.

Length of the gas tube underneath the handguards and position of the gas block on the barrel is the difference. Carbine is shorter. It is one of those endless debates as to which is better. Use the search tool and you will get lots of opinions on which is better. The debate happens once a week. It really comes down to personal preferrance. Just bear in mind what looks good on the screen might not make for the best choice when you have to lug it around all day long.

Personally I prefer a standard M4 carbine with carbine length handguards. I like to take CQB courses and prefer that style of shooting to bench rest shooting. Lighter overall rifle makes for a less fatigued training day, and I don't have to run a pencil barrel to do it. I've never actually noticed a difference in performance between the extended handguards and arm stretched all the way out method or having the hand just forward of the mid-point of a carbine handguard where it natually wants to fall. I know others swear by the extended method, for me if anything I experienced the opposite results. I tried it their way...wasn't impressed.

If you are going to get extended length handguards then get the midlength. It is a waste not to. You already added the weight, so now you might as well take advantage of the benefits you get from a longer gas system rather than just waste that potential room for it under those handguards. I've never actually noticed a difference, but engineers swear there is one. So why the heck not?

Again, if you are worried about weight ditch the monstrous extended 4-rail forearm that weighs as much as a tank rather than reducing the diamater of the barrel to a pencil barrel. Government profile is fine, but I would not go thinner. Heats up faster and starts to change shape faster. The only time I would use a pencil barrel is on a retro-build that called for it in order to be authentic.

Of course, none of these things actually matters. You don't know how to shoot it yet and you are worried about minor differences only a true expert would be able to shoot well enough to notice the differences between them (and odds are it would be in his head). So any of them will do just fine. If you are the average AR owner it will be used for recreation. In which case all of the above will suit you just fine. It is all about preferrance. The differences between them might matter if you were to drop into the sandbox tomorrow and running select fire or full-auto in combat, but that's probably not you (nor is it me anymore).

My two most recent ARs (just sold one of them a few months back). TOP: The shorter length handguard rifle is Carbine Length. Notice the position of the front sight post...that is where the gas tube ends. BOTTOM: The rifle with the longer handguards has a midlength gas system completely hidden under a rifle length forend. I prefer the M4 carbine when it comes to actually shooting them during run and gun CQB style courses. But the longer gun is better for precision shooting and plinking at the range thanks to the stainless steel precision barrel and several other design choices. I sold the bottom rifle and kept the top rifle when I needed funds.

http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh183/tacticalcity/My%20AR-15s/Tactical_Collection.jpg

anymoose
06-13-2012, 11:41 PM
OK so after a lot of researching i think ive come to a decision. i think i may pick up a Daniels Defense only thing now is, if u guys could help me out with this. whats the difference between a carbine and a mid length? what are advantages or disadvantages to each? i like the M4V4 and M4V5 models. i dont like the fixed front sight on the other models. also they have a M4V5 lightweight model, i guess the barrel is lighter. is that better or worse? thanks for all the help guys

light barrels are good for carrying the gun around, but they become inaccurate more quickly when they get hot.

Carbine vs Mid-length gas system...

youre going to hear a bunch of theories about reliability, having too much pressure in the carbine length, and more kick (as if the 5.56 had any amount of kick worth mentioning)... the advantages and disadvantages are not going to apply to most shooters, the only real measurable one the longer sight radius of the mid length, but if you arent going with a standard FSB, you wont notice it anyway.

one theory says that the carbine has too much gas pressure because of how short it is, and that it can cause damage to the bolt, a counter to that theory is that it doesnt cause damage to the bolt, and if anything the extra pressure helps ensure that the gun cycles.

W/E

truth is, youre going with a quality brand, just about anything you buy from them will work reliably, and will serve you well, its just gonna come down to personal preference, and weighing out theoretical pros and cons.

i like and have no issues with my carbine length system, and i would have no problem buying and owning a mid length.

jdm*fiend
06-13-2012, 11:43 PM
At first i was leaning for the colt but after some research i didnt like the idea of the 6940 and the monolithic 1 piece rail and not being able to change it out. as for the 6920 i just dont like the front sight and as far as i know those cant be removed can they?

anymoose
06-13-2012, 11:47 PM
At first i was leaning for the colt but after some research i didnt like the idea of the 6940 and the monolithic 1 piece rail and not being able to change it out. as for the 6920 i just dont like the front sight and as far as i know those cant be removed can they?

Front sights can be removed and replaced with a low pro gas block.

I dont like Colt as a brand, and thats just my own preference so i wont spread my agenda and tell you why i refuse to own one, but DD is a great company with a great product, no reason not to get one.

anymoose
06-13-2012, 11:54 PM
you should get a KAC SR15 upper, then slap it on W/E lower!

xSARSx
06-14-2012, 12:41 AM
how about dpms, have you considered them

http://www.dpmsinc.com/Tactical-Precision_ep_71-1.html

iHate.Kalifornia
06-15-2012, 5:16 PM
Screw buying one of these guns, go the 80% route and youll get yourself an unregistered, unserialized (completely legal) AR 15. Dont have to pay stupid DROS fees and no waiting period. :D

Agent Tikki
06-16-2012, 7:31 AM
You have a generous budget.

Daniel Defense
Bravo Company Manufacturing
Lewis Machine and Tool
JP Enterprises
LaRue
Noveske
Rainer Arms
Wilson Combat

You can't go wrong with any of these companies. Just be sure to post lotsa PrOn of ur your new rifle and start saving a bit more money, kuz there will be another one.



Personally, I'd go with a 16" BCM lightweight middy (about $1000) and an Aimpoint pro or micro. Uprgrade the rail, muzzle brake, stock grips later. Just get that, shoot it alot, and make changes as YOU see fit.

Kappy
06-16-2012, 12:24 PM
I know far less about this than anyone else here, in all likelihood. All i can say is I just build my first AR (well... built the lower and bought the upper). Since the lower supposedly makes no difference, I can only report that my Rock River Arms upper is awesome. I just drilled a .35MOA group last weekend. The half-quad rail is a great piece of furniture as well. A great value, as far as I can figure with the Wylde chamber, cryo barrel, etc.

And... for what you have to spend... http://www.rockriverarms.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=214 all tricked out.