Quantcast
  1. Sign up now and join over 35,000 northwest gun owners. It's quick, easy, and 100% free!

Tips on buying an AR-15

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by packerfan503, Mar 30, 2014.

  1. packerfan503

    packerfan503 sw pdx Member

    Messages:
    309
    Likes Received:
    18
    Hey everyone I am looking to buy my first AR. I dont know much about them. I want to keep my first purchase under $1k. The one tip I have recieved is to not buy a carbon lower. Other than that I'm flying blind. Just hoping to get some pointers on what to look for i.e. brands, furniture, parts, chrome lined barrel or not, 1:7 twist or other.

    Thanks in advance for your time and advice.

    Also if you have one your selling in my price range feel free to point me to your ad.
     
  2. Riot

    Riot Benton County, Washington Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,031
    Likes Received:
    1,718
    Just an FYI, most AR types are going to be 1:9 twist...but I guess the big question you've got to answer is what are you going to use it for? Is this a SHTF/TEOTWAWKI, or are you going to go Coyote hunting with it?

    That will determine a lot right there...barrel length, twist ratio, caliber, etc.
     
  3. GunRightsCoalition

    GunRightsCoalition Vancouver Well-Known Member 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    658
    Likes Received:
    412
    Salt Bath Nitrating is considered superior to chrome lined by most. Sometimes called Melonite finish. Beyond that there is so much variety that it is hard to suggest anything specific. You can get something basic for about $650 and then go from there which would be my suggestion if you don't know exactly what your looking for. Since the parts are widely available and easy enough to swap that gives you some flexibility to make a few changes once you shoot it and have a better idea of what you want.
     
    mjbskwim and packerfan503 like this.
  4. packerfan503

    packerfan503 sw pdx Member

    Messages:
    309
    Likes Received:
    18
    It will be a SHTF/fun at the range weapon.
     
  5. GunRightsCoalition

    GunRightsCoalition Vancouver Well-Known Member 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    658
    Likes Received:
    412
    Then your probably going to want a 16" barrel and the twist will not make a significant difference. 16" is the minimum without becoming a SBR and therefore will be less weight than a longer one. Twist will not be significant for a SHTF firearm. If your going to compete with it in competitions then that extra 1/4" of accuracy at 100 yards might be significant but will also require tailoring the loads to the barrel.
     
    mjbskwim and packerfan503 like this.
  6. Kruejl

    Kruejl Hillsboro Moderator of the Coriolis effect Staff Member Gold Supporter Silver Supporter

    Messages:
    1,897
    Likes Received:
    2,366
    A good starting model like a Smith M&P sport can be had for $650 or so. DPMS has one in that price point as well. Bushmaster has one or two in that range. I would personally make sure its NOT a Carbon-15 aka polymer upper but that's just me. They shoot fine from what I hear but they don't interchange with other rifles.

    I would start with something like the Smith, DPMS or Bushmaster and then tacti-cool it out as you see fit. Lots of parts like railed forends, foregrips and such can be found on fleabay for cheap. Keep us posted on what you end up with.
     
    mjbskwim and packerfan503 like this.
  7. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

    Messages:
    8,469
    Likes Received:
    19,442
    You could always do what I'm doing and build your own if you're not in a huge rush. The only part that's regulated is the stripped lower, once you have that, you can buy your lower parts kit, furniture and upper components. You don't have to be a gunsmith either. A few simple tools will get you there. The hardest part is probably assembling the upper, but you can buy a completed upper for a reasonable price. All of that lets you put together the rifle you want at a pretty decent price, and at a pace you can afford if you don't have the full purchase amount on hand. Just a thought. There are plenty of videos on YT that show you how to piece things like the lower together.
     
    rds801 and packerfan503 like this.
  8. Meridian7750

    Meridian7750 Portland Area Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    387
    Likes Received:
    333
    My advice? Get a 16", 1:7 or 1:8 twist (these will shoot pretty much every weight and length of bullet well).
    Yes on chrome lined. Magpul CTR stock, and MOE+ grip.
    Get a 5.56 chamber (not .223...they are not the same).
    Buy a complete rifle from a respected manufacturer (Spikes, Colt, S&W, maybe Palmetto State Armory...these will come in right around your budget).
    Don't go fancy on rails or optics yet...save those for your next builds.
    Shoot it with iron sights, learn the weapon and platform, then make the enhancements that will benefit you.
    "Conversate" me if you have any specific questions.
     
  9. guitarguy

    guitarguy Longview, WA Silver Supporter Silver Supporter

    Messages:
    1,280
    Likes Received:
    508
    +1 on the Smith and Wesson M&P Sport. Tough to build an AR under $650.
    Building an AR can be rewarding as you can get exactly what you want but uppers seem to have increased in price, as lowers have come down a bit.
    A $650 AR with a warranty seems like a good way to go for the casual shooter.
     
    packerfan503 likes this.
  10. packerfan503

    packerfan503 sw pdx Member

    Messages:
    309
    Likes Received:
    18
    Does the M&P sport have a carbon lower? Does this allow me to change out or add parts?
     
  11. guitarguy

    guitarguy Longview, WA Silver Supporter Silver Supporter

    Messages:
    1,280
    Likes Received:
    508
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2014
    packerfan503 likes this.
  12. cookie

    cookie THE SOCIALIST STATE OF KALI - FORNIA Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,075
    Likes Received:
    532
    I would recommend you look at a Bravo Company ARs. They are really built to mil spec quality . The lesser ARs are built with what I like to call bolt action steel, the quality ARs are built with what I like to call machine gun steel. Read the materials and processes used by Bravo Company then choose. http://www.bravocompanyusa.com/ This link filthy 14 shows what kind of life a quality ar can have.https://www.slip2000.com/blog/s-w-a-t-magazine-filthy-14/ There are other high quality ARs besides Bravo but Bravo has the best for the $$$$ I like the 20" and the 16 inch mid length. You probably would like that! I have been playing with ARs since the early 1970s and the quality ARs run and run. The lesser brands usually choke up when run hard. only buy a 1/7 twist you can run 55gn to 77+ gn bullets. AR15.com and M$carbine.net have tons of AR info for you to study up on before making a proper decision.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2014
  13. Riot

    Riot Benton County, Washington Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,031
    Likes Received:
    1,718
    All MilSpec parts are compatible with each other. Although a carbon lower isn't made of MilSpec parts, it is made to MilSpec design and will accept the upper receiver from any AR15 MilSpec upper.

    *edit*

    If you have no experience with ARs, I would suggest getting a name brand AR like S&W, Remington, Bushmaster, DPMS, etc...

    If you knew a bit, I would suggest making your own from a kit and making the rifle for you and your needs.

    model1sales.com

    Purchasing a rifle kit can save you money and you can talor a rifle to you a lot better than just buying a rifle at a gun shop and walking out the door with it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2014
    packerfan503 likes this.
  14. 808hondacrguy

    808hondacrguy Eugene,OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

    Messages:
    612
    Likes Received:
    1,464
    My first AR was a Smith and Wesson M&P sport, It is a quality weapon, and has given me absolutely zero problems or grief. I still have it, and it is one of my favoritist guns that I own. I find myself grabbing it more than any other of my ARs when we go shooting. I do not regret buying a rifle with no forward assist or dust cover, as I have never had use for either yet in the years I have owned it. In fact, I keep thinking of selling one of my others so I can get another Sport. I like it that much. :)
     
    JK47, guitarguy and packerfan503 like this.
  15. rds801

    rds801 Portland Member

    Messages:
    149
    Likes Received:
    16
    I agree with much of the advice you are getting. But this right here I agree with the most because this is what I did. :)
     
    packerfan503 likes this.
  16. SCARed

    SCARed Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    472
    Likes Received:
    285
    I wouldn't/couldn't recommend building your first AR. You'll spend a bunch of money just to find you don't like the individual parts, and spend even more upgrading to what you want. And you won't find that out until you buy something and start shooting it.

    Once you have your first AR and know what you like, then go build your own.

    Run down to curts250x110.png and see pretty much every AR option available. My guess is you'll end up walking out with one of his package deals.
     
  17. rds801

    rds801 Portland Member

    Messages:
    149
    Likes Received:
    16
    This is true I guess. Spend a bunch of money building one or spend a bunch of money buying one. Either way you will have to shoot them to see what you want to change on them.

    Just added up the parts for my first rifle that I put together. (I bought my upper already complete, only put together the lower)

    My first rifle cost me $636.89. I did make changes to the rifle. I put a geissele ssa trigger in and a magpul moe hand guard and magpul moe stock.
     
  18. ZA_Survivalist

    ZA_Survivalist Oregon AK's all day.

    Messages:
    4,649
    Likes Received:
    5,749
    Then almost any AR will do.
    I own bottom barrel stuff and high end
    (yeah, ZA owns some purdy things)
    Stuff.
    Both types function without fail.
    With lowers (aside from polymer)
    You cannot go wrong.. Its what ever set up you like.

    Upper wise, you can always tailor it to suit your needs as you go along.
     
    guitarguy likes this.
  19. OHshoot!

    OHshoot! Bellingham Member

    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    17
    Stag Arms are well built and very accurate.
     
    Riot likes this.
  20. aznbala

    aznbala Tualatin, OR Member

    Messages:
    94
    Likes Received:
    14
    Is your budget for gun only? Do you have money for ammo, mags, etc?