I've been through M16 training with both the Army and Air Force and neither has taught me to use the forward assist, that I recall. The last training I went through I specifically remember them teaching us to clear the round rather than wasting time with the forward assist. My point is that FA and dust cover are pretty much a non-issue for most everyone, especially someone new to ARs. I know a lot of people that actually prefer the clean look of the slick side receiver without the FA and dust cover.
I changed the upper on my Sport to one with FA and dust cover purely for looks. As mentioned earlier I never had a malfunction that wasn't caused by me so there was no need to change anything on the rifle, except that I wanted to. IMO, the Sport is a great base for an AR build. I've changed a lot of stuff on mine and still have less money in it than with would buying a factory rifle with the same mods or building a rifle from scratch.
Glock 20, Colt Delta Elite, Sig 1911 Extreme, Norinco SKS-D, AK47, Marlin 795 .22LR, CZ 452 LH .22LR, Colt M4 .22LR, S&W M&P-15 Sport, Remington 700 SPS LH 300 Win Mag, Winchester 1300 Defender 12ga, Winchester 1300 Black Shadow 20ga
Last edited by AKRover; 10-01-2012 at 10:50..