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I've got a Marlin XL7 270 bolt action that's just sitting in the closet ....I'm not likely to use it so thinking about trading it in towards a new or used budget AR that would be more fun to just go out and plink with ...possibly better for home protection than the 270 ..
but I'm not going to get into a knock-down-drag-out with my wife over how much I spend on it so what's out there new or used in the 500 or less range... I think the Marlin which has a nice crossfire scope on it might go for 200 or 250 being realistic.
 
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Honestly, you could possibly still find an AR for $500 but not with any optics or irons.

Unfortunately, I’m today’s market you will most likely need to be able to get into the $600-$700 range for a functioning AR.

That might include 1 mag. Add $13 at least for every other mag.

Plus just going bare bones Ammo, not specialty Ammo, add about $15 per mag to fill it will Ammo.

That’s being real.

If you’re lucky you might find a few bucks off here or there but a gun plus a couple mags with Ammo is going to get you into the $800 range.

Keep an eye on the classifieds and be ready to buy when you see something. Most good deals are gone in 5-20 min. The better the deal the faster it will sell.


Sell what you want and stack as much cash together as you can.

Good Luck;)
 
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Mainly what I'm after is a semi-automatic with a lighter cartridge than the 270 .mmmI'm not sure I want to go all the way down to 22 long rifle but I'm not totally locked into either the look of the ARs or that specific caliber 223
 
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If your main goal is to plink, a .22lr imo is the most fun you can have for the least amount of money.

Potatoes or reactive targets are cheap. Ammo is expensive for what it is but still sub 10¢.

You can have a lot of fun for $25 vs an AR will run you $15 every time you change mags.

Id look for a Marlin 60 as they are pretty good straight out of the box and accurate. Maybe in the $250 range and if you want a scope .22 scopes are cheaper then higher recoil scopes are.

Consider a Henry lever gun and avoid the $25 registration fee (not transfer fee you’ll still need to pay that) and the $18 yearly fee for the privilege of owning a fully simi automatic assault rifle in WA........

(Side note, I love my Henry and it’s great fun to shoot - plus it will shoot shorts, Longs and long rifle .22)
 
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Yeah the 22 long rifle can be a ton of fun for plinking.... as far as self protection I guess I could apply the same philosophy that I've applied in buying a 9 millimeter pistol instead of something bigger.... with the right ammunition and a 15-round magazine each particular round doesn't have to do catastrophic damage.
 
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I've actually had the 270 on consignment at the biggest local sporting goods store for about 10 months including last falls deer season with no luck which is why I was beginning to think about trading it in to the store. thanks for the thoughts I may also consider things like a 22 Magnum or a hornet
 

ilikegunspdx

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I would separate the plinking and HD roles for all the reasons Joe13 mentioned above. You can get a .22 plinker for as low as $100-$150 new and a 12 gauge pump shotgun for as low as $150 used for example (I recently saw a maverick 88 for less than that new). OR as said above, .22 plus 9mm handgun (buy only known reliable weapons not junk!, critical for any HD gun). If you go for 9mm for HD and don't plan on concealed carry, go for a larger gun if possible cuz it's easier to shoot, especially in stressful situation like home invasion.

Also it may be out of your budget but you can find 22s in AR15 clone rifles which can be fun and also allow you to do same practice as if were a 223/556 (ie. ergonomics, controls, etc. are the same). Pre-panic you could get a Walther-made HK416 for around $300 and they are all metal and very well built (pistol version may be my favorite gun overall, that thing is a blast to waste lots of ammo). M4 colt version is less $ but 1/2 of it is VERY cheap plastic. S&W 15-22 is all plastic feels like a toy but takes standard AR15 triggers (was $300 pre panic). You used to be able to find sig 522s for less than $300 used but I dunno about now with the panic. I think Beretta ARX-160, HK G32, and HK MP5 (not the GSG one!) are also Walther-made clones that you can buy used. They are very fun to shoot.
 
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Home defense is pretty well covered by my full-sized Springfield Armory XD 9mm.
Just hated to see the 270 sit year after year so started thinking about another rifle cheaper to shoot.
 

ilikegunspdx

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Home defense is pretty well covered by my full-sized Springfield Armory XD 9mm.
Just hated to see the 270 sit year after year so started thinking about another rifle cheaper to shoot.
Cool. then at $500ish the world is your oyster for choices in 22 guns. Heck you could get a henry like mentioned above plus a heritage single action revolver for $430 total. So many types of 22s out there: tactical clones, historical clones, everything under the sun is made by somebody in 22 really.

Re consignment, if it has been there 10 months it is overpriced IMO. You would be better off to advertise it here at 10% less than going rate and sell it pretty fast. On a trade in at big store you will probably get 30% of it's actual value or at the most 50% probably, depending on the place. You could also advertise it here and say what types of trades you are open to and might find a good fit that way.
 
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Cool. then at $500ish the world is your oyster for choices in 22 guns. Heck you could get a henry like mentioned above plus a heritage single action revolver for $430 total. So many types of 22s out there: tactical clones, historical clones, everything under the sun is made by somebody in 22 really.

Re consignment, if it has been there 10 months it is overpriced IMO. You would be better off to advertise it here at 10% less than going rate and sell it pretty fast. On a trade in at big store you will probably get 30% of it's actual value or at the most 50% probably, depending on the place. You could also advertise it here and say what types of trades you are open to and might find a good fit that way.
So if you advertise here, then the exchange has to be at a gun store etc -- to facilitate the firearms sale or exchange, correct?
 

ilikegunspdx

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Yep transfer at any local friendly FFL who offers the service. which is most of them (smaller shops tend to be more user friendly and cheaper than big stores I have found). State in the ad who pays for transfer (often the buyer but not always and can be negotiated of course).
 

223to45

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So if you advertise here, then the exchange has to be at a gun store etc -- to facilitate the firearms sale or exchange, correct?

IF you want to sell it , make me a deal. Might be interested.

Looks like I might be just down the road from you.
 

Siglvr

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You might consider waiting for a bit to buy (I know that's hard and things might get worse - but unlikely). I just looked up Smith and Wessons great little (formerly) cheap M&P15 Sport II on Gun Genie. They were under $500 and available everywhere, now there are NO S&W of any model 5.56 available but they they list the Sport 2 price at $773.

But you can't buy it cause they are sold out. Cabelas lists it at $799......but.... you.. can't buy it cause they are also sold out. Crazy. Anyway, these companys (S&W, Ruger etc etc) are ramping up production, in a couple months they'll catch up to demand and have guns for sale again more than likely.
 
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I think there's some good advice above, but wanted to point out another option. I posted the following in a 'cheap AR wanted' classified thread, but it seems more germane here:

Especiall on the used market, I'm sure you can find something decent under $500, but if you want to go seriously low-budget, you can build up a functional AR, and probably stay under $300 (I have).

Here's the rundown of my most recent 'ultra-cheap' build:

EP Armory 80% Poly lower (get the one with the reinforced butstock mount), the blems are fine ($25).
Lower parts kit from Sarco ($36.50).
Leapers stock combo (tube, spring, buffer and stock) from Cheaper than Dirt ($49.95).
Bear Creek Arsenal BCG from Wise Arms ($59.99--it costs more to buy direct from Bear Creek).
From Combat Armory, get the 16" upper with skeleton handguard for $139.99.

About $310 plus some shipping, etc. I've done it cheaper in the past, but that was the cheapest way I found with all new parts earlier this year. That said; In February, I was able to help my brother in law do one for under $250 utilizing parts found in the classifieds here and on Gunbroker to get a BCG, Lower parts, and an upper that were 'leftovers' from others' upgrades.

I do not at all mean to say that this is the best AR you can build, but especially if you are new to the platform you will learn an awful lot and have a start that you can upgrade from.
 
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