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Old 04-16-2012, 14:30   #1
Captaink
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Help With Purchase

I know question has been asked many times but--
I do not have much knowledge about AR type rifles,
And the data is very confusing for one who is not knowledgeable.,
Looking for one for home defense, some range, but mostly because I'd like one.
I don't want a high end type but low to medium. I don't need all the bells and whistles to start.
Thanks for your help!
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Old 04-16-2012, 14:56   #2
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I really need to type up an AR-15 primer...

OP: There are several options on the market that will work well for a reasonable price, but you may have to do some waiting or some looking around to find one. A S&W M&P Sport should set you back just over $600. Great barrel, reputation for being reliable, accurate, and inexpensive. Biggest drawback is the upper receiver lacks the otherwise standard dust cover and forward assist.

For a little more, you can also look at Palmetto State Armory. With a little patience, you can get a rifle (as a whole rifle, as parts, or a complete upper and complete lower) for around $700, with all the standard "mil-spec" features, like a 1/7 chrome lined barrel, standard upper receiver, etc.

The options go up in price from there with gradual improvement in quality and reliability.

If you can tell us more of the price range you are looking at, we can give you more ideas.

Stay away from DPMS, Bushmaster, and Olympic. I'm sure plenty of people will come along and say theirs have been great, but when ARs from more reliable companies are available in the same price range, why buy from a company that's had numerous quality complaints in recent years?
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Old 04-16-2012, 15:18   #3
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I recommend you take some time and research this. Read all the relevant threads here and on other forums. Google M4 comparison chart by Rob S and look at the explanation of features pages. When you have an understanding of what those features are and how they will or will not affect your use requirements, then you can make an informed decision.
While it may sound simple to just ask what’s a good brand? If you do your own research, you won’t have to worry about some 14 year old key board commando steering you down the wrong path.
That said, If you don’t care enough to do some research, These are some brands I would buy. In no particular order. Colt, BCM, LMT, Daniel Defense, Spikes, PSA, Noveske.
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Old 04-16-2012, 15:21   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K. Foster View Post
I recommend you take some time and research this. Read all the relevant threads here and on other forums. Google M4 comparison chart by Rob S and look at the explanation of features pages. When you have an understanding of what those features are and how they will or will not affect your use requirements, then you can make an informed decision.
While it may sound simple to just ask whatís a good brand? If you do your own research, you wonít have to worry about some 14 year old key board commando steering you down the wrong path.
That said, If you donít care enough to do some research, These are some brands I would buy. In no particular order. Colt, BCM, LMT, Daniel Defense, Spikes, PSA, Noveske.
Solid advice here, too. If you don't know even the basics of an ARs features, you won't be able to tell what's right for you, or when someone is giving you bad advice.
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Old 04-16-2012, 15:33   #5
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Thanks guys!! Is there any books out there?? The terms are hard
To understand etc.
It's great to have some place to go and get
Advice from with experience.
I have some experience with hand guns but not AR Type rifles
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Old 04-16-2012, 15:46   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captaink View Post
Thanks guys!! Is there any books out there?? The terms are hard
To understand etc.
It's great to have some place to go and get
Advice from with experience.
I have some experience with hand guns but not AR Type rifles
The AR15 Handbook by Mike Pannone
Green Eyes and Black Rifles by Kyle Lamb

Check out both of those.

What terms are you seeing that confuse you? If you tell us what you're getting confused by, I'm sure someone will be able to explain them.

Also, you didn't mention what your budget for an AR is - that will help with further suggestions for what type and brand of AR to purchase.
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Old 04-16-2012, 16:08   #7
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Thanks-I"ll get those books
Less than $1000.
Confusing terms when I see postings about putting your own rifle together
Lower one mfg. upper an other
Are they just two sections or does one have to assemble each?
Thanks for your help!
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Old 04-16-2012, 16:21   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captaink View Post
Thanks-I"ll get those books
Less than $1000.
Confusing terms when I see postings about putting your own rifle together
Lower one mfg. upper an other
Are they just two sections or does one have to assemble each?
Thanks for your help!
Under $1,000, I'd suggest having a little patience, and ordering from Bravo Company when they are caught up on their backlog, or see if you can catch a deal on a new Colt 6920 for under $1,000.

The lower receiver carries the serial number, and is considered a firearm by the ATF. It is the only part of an AR that can't be shipped directly to your door, as it must go to an FFL, same as any other firearm. It is the home of the trigger components, magazine well, bolt-catch and magazine release, as well as the buffer assembly, which hosts the stock. There are a few other small parts involved, as well.

You can order a stripped lower and the appropriate parts to assemble yourself, or buy a complete lower. Stocks and grips are easy to change at a later date and time, requiring little more than a screwdriver and a little know-how in most cases.
You can assemble a stripper lower with a hammer and punch set, and a castle nut wrench for the buffer tube. Extra tools, like a vice, lower receiver block, and vice-grips can come in handy, too, especially to help ensure the castle nut is torqued down correctly.

If you order a lower (stripper or complete), you then need an upper. This is home and host to the barrel, handguards, sights, bolt carrier group, charging handle, and attached items. For an AR newbie, it is strongly advised to buy this complete or at minimum with barrel, gas block, and muzzle device already assembled to the receiver itself.

If you really are unsure of assembly, then it is best to order a complete lower and complete upper that's already configured to your liking - either separately, or as a complete rifle.

Assembling the upper to the lower is a matter of two captured push pins, and is part of a standard field strip and cleaning process - literally, a trained monkey could do it.
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Old 04-16-2012, 16:28   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captaink View Post
Thanks-I"ll get those books
Less than $1000.
Confusing terms when I see postings about putting your own rifle together
Lower one mfg. upper an other
Are they just two sections or does one have to assemble each?
Thanks for your help!
With a little bit of knowledge and some tools, you can assemble your own upper and lower but itís generally accepted that for a noobie, you should buy a complete upper and assemble your lower, if you want to go the self assembly route. Buying a complete upper and lower and simply pushing 2 pins together is another good way to go. They do not have to be of the same manufacturer. Palmetto State has a bunch of options and is a good place to start.
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Old 04-16-2012, 17:12   #10
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Thanks for the advice
I'll check it out
Which upper and lower do you recommend
Thanks
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Old 04-16-2012, 17:55   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WoodenPlank View Post
Under $1,000, I'd suggest having a little patience, and ordering from Bravo Company when they are caught up on their backlog, or see if you can catch a deal on a new Colt 6920 for under $1,000.

The lower receiver carries the serial number, and is considered a firearm by the ATF. It is the only part of an AR that can't be shipped directly to your door, as it must go to an FFL, same as any other firearm. It is the home of the trigger components, magazine well, bolt-catch and magazine release, as well as the buffer assembly, which hosts the stock. There are a few other small parts involved, as well.

You can order a stripped lower and the appropriate parts to assemble yourself, or buy a complete lower. Stocks and grips are easy to change at a later date and time, requiring little more than a screwdriver and a little know-how in most cases.
You can assemble a stripper lower with a hammer and punch set, and a castle nut wrench for the buffer tube. Extra tools, like a vice, lower receiver block, and vice-grips can come in handy, too, especially to help ensure the castle nut is torqued down correctly.

If you order a lower (stripper or complete), you then need an upper. This is home and host to the barrel, handguards, sights, bolt carrier group, charging handle, and attached items. For an AR newbie, it is strongly advised to buy this complete or at minimum with barrel, gas block, and muzzle device already assembled to the receiver itself.

If you really are unsure of assembly, then it is best to order a complete lower and complete upper that's already configured to your liking - either separately, or as a complete rifle.

Assembling the upper to the lower is a matter of two captured push pins, and is part of a standard field strip and cleaning process - literally, a trained monkey could do it.

WoodenPlank, I really wish this exactly post had been readily available when I first started the search into AR's. It would have helped a whole lot! Detailed enough for someone to get the point, but not too long as to bore the reader with useless information/techincal jargin. Good Job!
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Old 04-16-2012, 18:20   #12
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Thanks for the advice
I'll check it out
Which upper and lower do you recommend
Thanks
There are literally ****loads to choose from. Most lowers are the same - Palmetto State Armory sells stripped lowers for $80, and occasionally does sales on them for $50.

For an upper, Bravo Company USA would be my choice. A lot of that is personal preference, though - different gas system, barrel length, flash hider choice, etc. Lot's of technical workings to dig into, lots of personal preference.

Personally, I would suggest you look at a COMPLETE lower from PSA with the stock and grip you like the look of already installed (Magpul MOE stock and grip would be a solid choice), and a Bravo Company upper with a 1/7 or 1/8 twist, 16", midlength barrel, standard round or Magpul handguards, fixed front sight and Troy or Daniel Defense rear, and BCM full-auto bolt carrier group. That would give you a solid, reliable rifle for around your budget price, and one heck of a platform to build on in the future, when you want to start adding rails, optics, foregrips, etc.
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Old 04-16-2012, 19:00   #13
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OP you have been given some great advice from Woodenplank. I would look hard at a Palmetto state armory build and or a BCM build.
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Old 04-16-2012, 20:18   #14
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Thanks for all your help!
I will now digest it all and I'm sure make a good choice.
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Old 04-16-2012, 21:19   #15
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Also, the general consensus is to avoid anything by DPMS or Bushmaster.
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Old 04-17-2012, 17:29   #16
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Originally Posted by bigmoney890 View Post
WoodenPlank, I really wish this exactly post had been readily available when I first started the search into AR's. It would have helped a whole lot! Detailed enough for someone to get the point, but not too long as to bore the reader with useless information/techincal jargin. Good Job!

+2

This info cleared up many of questions I had as well. Thanks!
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Old 04-17-2012, 17:34   #17
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Glad to be of help.
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