There are some things I don't understand well about firearms and some helpful input would be much appreciate...

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As a guy formerly in the army as an American soldier, I'm so familiar with this weapon platform. Several of my issue M16A2's even had Colt AR-15 stamped right on the left side of the mag well. American citizens, I feel, need this gun because, even for older and frail people, it's easy to shoot and handle and 5.56 ammo is dirt cheap as compared with other CF ammo. This is 3 rifles in one: a fun-to-shoot sporter, a varminter and a great home defender.

I endeavor to own my own Colt AR-15A4 should Colt decide to put them back into the civilian market again. They seem to be out of stock right now. This gun has a detachable A2 rear sight carry handle and government profile barrel, not HBAR. I would consider this an all-around rifle for plinking cans and soda bottles, controlling rodents and coyotes, home defense and range paper target fun as well. I want easy iron sights and scope capability.

A few questions about this rifle:

1. it make a good varminter for rodents as woodchucks and ground squirrel about what maximum range with its stock non-HBAR barrel and the proper scope mounted on the picatinny rail? I had a a Burris Optics Peepers QD mount in mind. Supposed to be excellent at holding a zero everytime the scope and mount goes on and off the gun. For a scope I have a Leupold of sorts in mind. Beaverton, OR is the home of Leupold.

2. will the A2 sight on the stock Colt carry handle to continue to hold its zero each and every time the handle goes on and off the receiver?

3. is Harris bipod a good one for varmint rifles including AR-15's?

4. the cheapest 5.56 ammo (some of it Chinese bulk) will group how tight in a Colt AR-15A4 typically? is the cheap stuff even decent for varmints up to about 500 yards?


I know there are shiploads of AR-15 clones on the market but none would ever be so near and dear to me than the one's bearing a Rampant Pony.
 

Andy54Hawken

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Interesting....
None of the M16A1's , A2's , CAR-15's or M4 Carbines that I was issued or remember seeing , had :
Colt AR15 , stamped on them...but its been awhile since I was in the Army.

Be that as it may....
We zeroed our M16A1's , A2's , CAR-15's and M4 Carbines at 25 yards...but shot and qualified with them out to 300 meters...on what was commonly called the "pop-up" range.
The above mentioned rifles were iron sighted , no optics were commonly used on the M16 series , expecting the occasional night vision scope.
I was in the Infantry and often was assigned to a LRRP / LRSD unit....so we did get see and use some more upper end items....but again...optics at that time were uncommon.

When I had good eyes....the 300 meter distance was a good practical limit with the 5.56 round and the issued iron sights on the M16 series of rifles and carbines.

As for as your questions #2 and #4
It depends...

On my AR the detachable sight / carry mount will hold its zero....
With that said...I no longer use it....I use a Daniel Defense A1 style rear sight.
I would guess that some carry handle sights will retain a zero...and others will not.

As for ammo and accuracy....again it depends...
Use what your rifle likes and what you shoot best with.
You will have to try out different brands and styles of ammo .
This will require lots of practice and range time to see what does indeed work for you.
Andy
 
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Interesting....
None of the M16A1's , A2's , CAR-15's or M4 Carbines that I was issued or remember seeing , had :
Colt AR15 , stamped on them...but its been awhile since I was in the Army.

Be that as it may....
We zeroed our M16A1's , A2's , CAR-15's and M4 Carbines at 25 yards...but shot and qualified with them out to 300 meters...on what was commonly called the "pop-up" range.
The above mentioned rifles were iron sighted , no optics were commonly used on the M16 series , expecting the occasional night vision scope.
I was in the Infantry and often was assigned to a LRRP / LRSD unit....so we did get see and use some more upper end items....but again...optics at that time were uncommon.

When I had good eyes....the 300 meter distance was a good practical limit with the 5.56 round and the issued iron sights on the M16 series of rifles and carbines.

As far as your questions #2 and #4
it depends...

On my AR the detachable sight / carry mount will hold its zero....
With that said...I no longer use it....I use a Daniel Defense A1 style rear sight.
I would guess that some carry handle sights will retain a zero...and others will not.

As for ammo and accuracy....again it depends...
Use what your rifle likes and what you shoot best with.
You will have to try out different brands and styles of ammo .
This will require lots of practice and range time to see what does indeed work for you.
Andy
Andy you deserve the title of soldier/master negotiator. Your responses are helpful and completely devoid of ambiguity. Well done sir and thank you for your service!
 

Andy54Hawken

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Andy you deserve the title of soldier/master negotiator. Your responses are helpful and completely devoid of ambiguity. Well done sir and thank you for your service!
Thank you for your kind words....they mean a lot.
And you are very welcome...it was my pleasure ( mostly :D ) to serve.
Andy
 
DEPENDS!

I was issued several different variants of the Carbine in question, NEVER the "Rifle" so my response and bias might not align with the thinking or purpose were discussing. That said, The Best of the best was my first issue A-2 HBAR ( Colt 607/XM-177E) with it's 1/8 twist 11.5 inch barrel! I could consistently score out to a maximum of 400 meters, but that was the practical limits of this combo! A-2 HBAR sights with the National Match rear Diopter was what got the job done! MOA was achievable but impractical beyond 200 meters! The Early M-4 saw some improvement, but the AMMO left us wanting badly, and scores proved it, and Combat left no shadow of a doubt that something needed to change! Change came with the 1/7 twist and switch to M-262 ammo, better, but not as good as the first A-2!
Today, I have a close replica of that A-2 HBAR Colt 607 with it's 11.5 inch 1/7 twist and match rear carry handle sight, with really good factory ammo, and better hand loads, this little carbine is good to around 500 meters on a good day, Min. of Bad Guy is the norm, which puts this solidly in the great all around category, I can do CQB and Counter Sniper with out changing a thing, pretty handy to have, and if needed, I could hunt with it to all the same practical limits of a actual hunting rifle! To me, it's the Jack of All Trades, Master of None, but it's plenty good enough to justify carrying it before others that may be more capable, but also more limited!
 
OP
GoatFarmer
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Interesting....
None of the M16A1's , A2's , CAR-15's or M4 Carbines that I was issued or remember seeing , had :
Colt AR15 , stamped on them...but its been awhile since I was in the Army.

Be that as it may....
We zeroed our M16A1's , A2's , CAR-15's and M4 Carbines at 25 yards...but shot and qualified with them out to 300 meters...on what was commonly called the "pop-up" range.
The above mentioned rifles were iron sighted , no optics were commonly used on the M16 series , expecting the occasional night vision scope.
I was in the Infantry and often was assigned to a LRRP / LRSD unit....so we did get see and use some more upper end items....but again...optics at that time were uncommon.

When I had good eyes....the 300 meter distance was a good practical limit with the 5.56 round and the issued iron sights on the M16 series of rifles and carbines.

As for as your questions #2 and #4
It depends...

On my AR the detachable sight / carry mount will hold its zero....
With that said...I no longer use it....I use a Daniel Defense A1 style rear sight.
I would guess that some carry handle sights will retain a zero...and others will not.

As for ammo and accuracy....again it depends...
Use what your rifle likes and what you shoot best with.
You will have to try out different brands and styles of ammo .
This will require lots of practice and range time to see what does indeed work for you.
Andy
Andy, here is an M16 with such a Colt AR-15 stamping: mine was an A2 and I was in the late 1980's through mid 1995. This more or less Colt's own brand/model designation. The US govt. chose to brand it with "M16" to boot.
1597347587901.png
1597347917721.png
Above is the current AR-15A4, Colt's Patent Firearms Mfg. Co. is now Colt Defense. Where the serial number is I suspect the CAR stands for Colt Automatic Rifle and not Carbine. The COLT trademark with snake "C" is a the modern design.
 
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Andy54Hawken

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Andy, here is an M16 with such a Colt AR-15 stamping: mine was an A2 and I was in the late 1980's through mid 1995. This more or less Colt's own brand/model designation.
I am familiar with the history with the M16 series of rifles...
And yes in the early 1960s' the AR15 stamping was found on some issued rifles....
That was , as I said in the 1960's ...

My reading from your post had me thinking that you served much later....and as you state :
"I was in the late 1980's through mid 1995 ".....which is roughly the time I served.
Again I will say that no M16A1 , M16A2 , CAR-15 or M4 Carbine that I was issued had a stamping that said AR15.....
That stamping is from much earlier than when I served....and found on a different rifle...not a M16A2*
* At least in my experience.
Andy
 
OP
GoatFarmer
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I am familiar with the history with the M16 series of rifles...
And yes in the early 1960s' the AR15 stamping was found on some issued rifles....
That was , as I said in the 1960's ...

My reading from your post had me thinking that you served much later....and as you state :
"I was in the late 1980's through mid 1995 ".....which roughly the time I served.
Again I will say that no M16A1 , M16A2 , CAR-15 or M4 Carbine that I was issued had a stamping that said AR15.....
That stamping is from much earlier than when I served....and found on a different rifle...not a M16A2*
* At least in my experience.
Andy
Andy, not to insult your intelligence. Some people might not be aware that "Colt AR-15" was branded on issue M16's. They only might think of "AR-15" as the civilian version of the M16. My post was to clear things up for those people. CL scam? I have nothing to sell in regards to AR-15s and related accessories.
Correct: I served 1988-1995.
 

Andy54Hawken

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@GoatFarmer
Again...
I read that you were in the Army from the late 1980's -1995....
The M16 was not issued then....
The M16 was issued from roughly 1963- 1967...depending on what source is used.
So ...if you were in the Army during the times that you stated....you did not have a M16.
In fact you state that you had a M16A2....which is similar , to a M16 , but is a different rifle , vastly improved upon in regard to things like sights , barrel twist and the like.

And again...
I was already aware that the stamping AR15 could be found on some issued rifles....those rifles being from the early 1960s....not the 1980's through the mid 1990s......

So its your statement of :
Several of my issue M16A2's even had Colt AR-15 stamped right on the left side of the mag well.
That is what has me confused...as again...in my experience none of the M16A2's that I was issued or remember seeing...ever had AR15 stamped anywhere on them.
Andy
 
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GoatFarmer
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DEPENDS!

I was issued several different variants of the Carbine in question, NEVER the "Rifle" so my response and bias might not align with the thinking or purpose were discussing. That said, The Best of the best was my first issue A-2 HBAR ( Colt 607/XM-177E) with it's 1/8 twist 11.5 inch barrel! I could consistently score out to a maximum of 400 meters, but that was the practical limits of this combo! A-2 HBAR sights with the National Match rear Diopter was what got the job done! MOA was achievable but impractical beyond 200 meters! The Early M-4 saw some improvement, but the AMMO left us wanting badly, and scores proved it, and Combat left no shadow of a doubt that something needed to change! Change came with the 1/7 twist and switch to M-262 ammo, better, but not as good as the first A-2!
Today, I have a close replica of that A-2 HBAR Colt 607 with it's 11.5 inch 1/7 twist and match rear carry handle sight, with really good factory ammo, and better hand loads, this little carbine is good to around 500 meters on a good day, Min. of Bad Guy is the norm, which puts this solidly in the great all around category, I can do CQB and Counter Sniper with out changing a thing, pretty handy to have, and if needed, I could hunt with it to all the same practical limits of a actual hunting rifle! To me, it's the Jack of All Trades, Master of None, but it's plenty good enough to justify carrying it before others that may be more capable, but also more limited!
Most any AR-15 type rifle should be within minute of bad guy out to 300 meters. Minute of ground squirrel, coyote or woodchuck is questionable especially for a non-HBAR barrel and cheap Chinese or Russian ammo. I really don't want to spend 75 cents to $1.50 on a single round to terminate one ground squirrel or destroy one 2-liter bottle of strawberry soda. My main concern is that the rifle holds it's zero between carry handle and QD scope switches. My squirrel/chuck/plinking gun needs to turn instantly into my "s___ hits the fan" weapon. I don't want to dish out additional money for a second upper assembly for chuck hunting. I'd prefer to use A2 iron sights to engage a bad guy fairly close. I'm all too familiar with M16 rear peep sights and scored Expert in the army with them. I think the rear leaf sight was flipped to the L position to zero up close if my memory is not on the fritz.

I might only be able to hit, on a calm day, a squirrel up to 200 yards (and maybe a chuck at 300 yards) with a scoped standard-barrel and bipod-supported AR-15 rifle, not carbine, loaded with cheap ammo and I'm willing to accept the rifle and ammo even with such limitations. One has to also consider range and kill zone of the target engaged. What is the kill zone of a coyote? A chuck? A squirrel? I need to do some ballistics calculations of 5.56 ammo too. I want to achieve the optimal yardage for a scoped varmint zero. If the kill zone for a squirrel is 4", then deviation of the bullet from the line of sight should not exceed 2" any way. There will be a maximum point blank range where hold-over/hold-under is not necessary to kill the squirrel. I believe 5.56 stays pretty flat out to 300 yards. Windage is another ball of wax.

I have killed ground squirrels with a 6x power scoped .25-06 bolt-action up to 100 yards freestanding or supported by a fence post. The rifle grouped 1 MOA on the bench offhand and had a 100-yard zero. Still I was only killing squirrels 50% of the time this way. 1 miss per 2 shots fired on squirrels isn't too shabby for a deer rifle and caliber standing up.
 
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Most any AR-15 type rifle should be within minute of bad guy out to 300 meters. Minute of ground squirrel, coyote or woodchuck is questionable especially for a non-HBAR barrel and cheap Chinese or Russian ammo. I really don't want to spend 75 cents to $1.50 on a single round to terminate one ground squirrel or destroy one 2-liter bottle of strawberry soda. My main concern is that the rifle holds it zero between carry handle and QD scope switches. My squirrel/chuck/plinking gun my intimately turn into my S hits the fan weapon. I prefer to use A2 iron sights to engage a bad guy fairly close. I'm all too familiar with M16 rear peep sights and scored Expert in the army with them. I think the rear leaf sight was flipped to the L position to zero up close if my memory is not on the fritz.
This is the main reason I prefer a Fixed Carry handle A-2 HBAR sights carbine, and I use the "Delta" type scope mount to lock in an optic that cannot shift on the handle! There is so much more surface area to that mount, and retaining zero is never a question as long as the scope/optic is a good quality unit along with it's rings! With a good optic, that little carbine becomes a bug blaster out to 300+ meters with decent ammo! Cheap ammo is going to give cheep results, spend accordingly!
 

oldcorpgunny

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Lots of good information here from people who's opinions I respect. The best advice I ever got regarding shooting, came from a Preliminary Marksmanship Instructor at Edson Range at Camp Pendleton while I was trainng to be a Marine. He said, "Remember, your first shot is the one counts and you will be firing regular factory ammunition out of a COLD barrel." As a consequence of my two weeks in his care, I shot from a clean bore, absolutely filthy bore, in extreme heat, rain and some cooler weather. I shot at might, dawn and dusk (yes, there is a difference in the light) at ranges from 100 meters to 500 meters using an M-14. Later, we were issued the original boat anchor M-16's. His advice still rang true.
Combat in Vietnam usually never involved shooting at known targets at more than 200 feet! So, good site picture, sling wrapped around your arm, etc. was replaced with a quick snap shot or two followed by an M-60 laying down a base of fire till you could maneuver to within grenade range.
 

bbbass

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Hmmm, I don't have combat experience, but I did sleep at a Holiday Express a few times. And I would add defense against tyranny or mobs to the list of uses.

My varmint AR was (I just gave it to my SIL because my eyes have gone bad to the point where even a scope doesn't cut it) an 18.5" heavy stainless spiral fluted barrel in .223 Wylde with a 1/8 twist. It had a rifle length gas system, and a Velocity 3.5# drop in trigger. It shot dime sized 5 shot groups at 100 yds with handload Sierra Match 55gr HPBT. The best I could ever get with factory ammo was 2-3" at 100yds. Acceptable for war, but not much good for chucks laying down on rocks at 200-300yds.

I don't understand people shooting expensive rounds at squeaks. I accept people's right to do as they please, but one can massacre zillions of them all day long with a .22lr for very little out of pocket, and it's still a great challenge!!! Makes no sense to me.
 
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OP
GoatFarmer
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Hmmm, I don't have combat experience, but I did sleep at a Holiday Express a few times. And I would add defense against tyranny or mobs to the list of uses.

My varmint AR was (I just gave it to my SIL because my eyes have gone bad to the point where even a scope doesn't cut it) an 18.5" heavy stainless spiral fluted barrel in .223 Wylde with a 1/8 twist. It had a rifle length gas system, and a Velocity 3.5# drop in trigger. It shot dime sized 5 shot groups at 100 yds with handload Sierra Match 55gr HPBT. The best I could ever get with factory ammo was 2-3" at 100yds. Acceptable for war, but not much good for chucks laying down at 200-300yds.

I don't understand people shooting expensive rounds at squeaks. I accept people's right to do as they please, but one can massacre zillions of them all day long with a .22lr for very little out of pocket, and it's still a great challenge!!! Makes no sense to me.
Well, when one spends $1,200 for an AR-15, they feel they need to have a little fun with it. It's like a stock certificate, not much fun to just sit at home and caress with one's hands. A .22LR is just a boring rifle. An AR-15 is just so tacticool fun to shoot at pesky critters. My Colt AR-15 would never resort to being a gun cabinet queen. One guy is blaming his misses on the wind. How many baseball players blame their long fly-outs and missed outfield catches on the wind? I wouldn't mind flinging cheap high-velocity Chinese or russian 5.56 bullets at pesky little critters in the field. Note the cheap Freedom Munitions ammo box on the guy's varmint field bench.

 
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bbbass

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Well, when one spends $1,200 for an AR-15, they feel they need to have a little fun with it. It's like a stock certificate, not much fun to just sit at home and caress with one's hands. A .22LR is just a boring rifle. An AR-15 is just so tacticool fun to shoot at pesky critters. My Colt AR-15 would never resort to being a gun cabinet queen.
My suggestion then is to either get a heavy barrel (not too useful for your other needs), or to work up some handloads for the rifle you do get. Otherwise your probably looking at a group spread too large to include ground squirrel at 200-300yds. You can do it, who knows, you might get a lucky wind spurt once in awhile. But mostly you'd just be flinging lead. :)

P.S. Ammo is almost impossible to find right now. I shopped online for my daughter with no success. None at LGS either. I had to part with some of mine to ship for her birthday. But I gotta have enough to quell riots, so I'm not spending them on four legged critters.
 
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OP
GoatFarmer
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My suggestion then is to either get a heavy barrel (not too useful for your other needs), or to work up some handloads for the rifle you do get. Otherwise your probably looking at a group spread too large to include ground squirrel at 200-300yds. You can do it, who knows, you might get a lucky wind spurt once in awhile. But mostly you'd just be flinging lead. :)

P.S. Ammo is almost impossible to find right now. I shopped online for my daughter with no success. None at LGS either. I had to part with some of mine to ship for her birthday. But I gotta have enough to quell riots, so I'm not spending them on four legged critters.
I could also set my sights in on 100-200 yards. It sounds like a farmer or rancher with 1,000's of pesky critters in the field needs to take up handloading out of economic necessity. If I ever get a Colt AR-15 with a govt. profile barrel, at $1,100+ retail, I want to make the damn most out of every dollar spent for that sucker right out of the box. Using expensive match ammo to blast pesky little rodents seems ridiculous.

Mr. GunBlue debunks the lie that a light-profile barrel is necessarily inaccurate.

 
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oldcorpgunny

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Hmmm, I don't have combat experience, but I did sleep at a Holiday Express a few times. And I would add defense against tyranny or mobs to the list of uses.

My varmint AR was (I just gave it to my SIL because my eyes have gone bad to the point where even a scope doesn't cut it) an 18.5" heavy stainless spiral fluted barrel in .223 Wylde with a 1/8 twist. It had a rifle length gas system, and a Velocity 3.5# drop in trigger. It shot dime sized 5 shot groups at 100 yds with handload Sierra Match 55gr HPBT. The best I could ever get with factory ammo was 2-3" at 100yds. Acceptable for war, but not much good for chucks laying down on rocks at 200-300yds.

I don't understand people shooting expensive rounds at squeaks. I accept people's right to do as they please, but one can massacre zillions of them all day long with a .22lr for very little out of pocket, and it's still a great challenge!!! Makes no sense to me.
Well said Sir! I started off varmint hunting using rocks. I once hit a liberal in the mouth at 50 yards! Admittedly, it was a big target.
 

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