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post #1 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 09:31 AM Thread Starter
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Where to start when it comes to an AR?

I have been wanting an AR-15 for a while, but ever time I look into it I get confused with all the parts, pieces, options, upgrades, sizes, etc. Where does someone start if they want to get into this type of firearm? I ran into this same problem with trying to root my Android and just decided to walk away before I got myself into a big mess. I think the AR would be something I could really enjoy so I want to know what Im getting into. I guess Ill just throw out a few questions and see if anyone can help out here

1. Is there a base model that is fully functional out of the box that is a good place to start?
2. Is there a good break down (Video, Diagram) that anyone has used to understand the layout of the gun and its functionality?
3. You can get this in different gauges, correct? If so, what gauge is most common/cheapest/can be used at the range/takes down a zombie most effectively?
4. If I had a basic AR (from question 1), are there upgrades that should be done right away to make it a better gun?
5. Is an AR something that someone with minimal gun experience can handle in terms of ownership tear-down, reassembly, installing upgrades? I have a 9mm Sig and a .22 Savage rifle, but nothing nearly as complicated as an AR.

Id really like to get one of these as a target gun here in the City and for a fun gun when I go back to North Dakota and go shooting with the guys. Plus, Id like to have one of these before they start banning purchasing of these types of guns

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post #2 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 09:59 AM
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Funny you mention Android OS rooting. In my opinion, both face the same challenge... an initial steep learning curve that requires a LOT of reading.

But once you've spent the time reading and researching, you're good to go.
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post #3 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:03 AM
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Funny you mention Android OS rooting. In my opinion, both face the same challenge... an initial steep learning curve that requires a LOT of reading.

But once you've spent the time reading and researching, you're good to go.
Wrong thread Andy.

Muddy,

1. Any AR will fully function just fine. But it really depends on what you want to use it for that determines a good value for you. If all you want is a range toy, I would suggest something like DPMS (Panther Arms). If you want a .223 nail driver, then something higher end like Rock River Arms (I'm not even sure if RRA is considered high end anymore?).

2. Youtube and google. the AR15 platform is so common (and old) that you can find Terrabytes worth of info on it. Also there are several members on here that own them and will be willing to talk about them.

3. Yes. .223 (5.56) is most common as that is the military NATO round. .308 (7.62) is prob the second most common, followed by .22LR, 6.5mm, .50 Beowolf, .50BMG, and I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting.

4. Depends on what you want to use it for. My opinion on what should be upgraded will differ from everyone else as my view on how I use it will be different. My first upgrades when I get my new AR15 (will be another DPMS rifle) will be a tactical charging handle, red dot scope and a more comfy grip. If you start upgrading bolt carrier groups or barrels then it might have been better to buy a higher level rifle that already had that stuff.

5. All I'm going to say about this is that the M16/ M4 platform is a standard issue weapon for the U.S. Military. Although I'm a vet, I'll be the first to admit that there are some stupid people in the service. An average person can tear down and reassemble an AR with less than 30min of training.

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Last edited by spoil9; 06-13-2012 at 10:04 AM. Reason: grammer and spelling.
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post #4 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:10 AM
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Subscribed.

Let me add one more question to Muddy's list...if on a limited budget, would an AK be a better choice?

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post #5 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:20 AM
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Let me add one more question to Muddy's list...if on a limited budget, would an AK be a better choice?
A better choice for what?
Saving money? That all depends on current market values, sales, and any deals you can find but typically the AK will be cheaper.

Ammo costs? .223 is typically cheaper (I'm not even considering Wolf ammo as I would never run that through my guns.)

Take down power? .308 would win, no contest.

Ease of use? I've never used an AK so I can't answer this but I've been told that it is simpler in design thus simpler to maintain.

Expandable? The AK is limited in how you can upgrade. The AR plateform you can upgrade any part you want as you wish/ can afford.


With all this though, I do have a bias towards the AR so my opinion of the AK will reflect that.

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post #6 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:24 AM
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Wrong thread Andy.



Muddy - do a search in this very forum. There's been a number of excellent AR "starting" discussion over the past few years, which would serve as a good starting place for you. Hell, I had one going a year or so back, when I was researching my first AR build. No point in repeating what's already been said.
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post #7 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:29 AM Thread Starter
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I tried scrolling thru the weapons forum and it only had 2 pages. Maybe that's something we should bring up to Admin, tell them to show all the threads.

I'll do a search.

Also, did you see my other thread about the used shotguns? Looking to see who treats customers right out here in our area...

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post #8 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:29 AM
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A better choice for what?
Saving money? That all depends on current market values, sales, and any deals you can find but typically the AK will be cheaper.

Ammo costs? .223 is typically cheaper (I'm not even considering Wolf ammo as I would never run that through my guns.)

Take down power? .308 would win, no contest.

Ease of use? I've never used an AK so I can't answer this but I've been told that it is simpler in design thus simpler to maintain.

Expandable? The AK is limited in how you can upgrade. The AR plateform you can upgrade any part you want as you wish/ can afford.


With all this though, I do have a bias towards the AR so my opinion of the AK will reflect that.
as having both - couple pointers

7.62x39 is cheaper than 5.56 - like $.17 -.20 per round vs $.35-.37 both surplus

AK aftermarket is nearly as good as for AR - but upgrade process is more involved and requires grinding/filing/drilling vs bolton/railslap with AR.
AK can be had in every caliber that AR is available in except exotics. 5.56, 5.45, 7.62x39, .308 AKs are a plenty.
AR is much better in terms of ergonomics and accuracy, AK is cheaper to maintain and will take more beating than AR - I shot AK through broken trigger pins, mag release springs tangled with hammer springs, dust cover bent/missing, magazine not fully locked in
for fun at the range, and no need for accuracy - AK are hard to beat.
I own 2 ARs, went through couple AKs, will pick another AK by winter.

for basic AR to build upon - hands down Pallmetto State Armory!

regarding this Forum - I have a bad feeling that it will go away shortly with ownership change

Last edited by samal; 06-13-2012 at 10:32 AM.
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post #9 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muddy View Post
I tried scrolling thru the weapons forum and it only had 2 pages. Maybe that's something we should bring up to Admin, tell them to show all the threads.

I'll do a search.

Also, did you see my other thread about the used shotguns? Looking to see who treats customers right out here in our area...
Check your forum settings - look for a setting that shows how far back a forum will display threads. I have over 90 pages in here and pulled up some random threads from 2007. They're all still here.
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post #10 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:41 AM
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7.62x39 is cheaper than 5.56 - like $.17 -.20 per round vs $.35-.37 both surplus
Touche. I forgot the standard AK was x39 and not x51.
My badz.

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post #11 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:44 AM Thread Starter
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Check your forum settings - look for a setting that shows how far back a forum will display threads. I have over 90 pages in here and pulled up some random threads from 2007. They're all still here.
Fixed it - thanks bro!

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post #12 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:49 AM
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No point in repeating what's already been said.
But then how are we going to turn this into the next AR15.com where we belittle who are looking up to us for help, barking out why my shit is the best without explaining why, and bragging about accomplishments without backing it up!

But yeah, I agree, there have been a couple threads on here that were really good. Some simply had links to a couple very fine rifles.

IMHO, every American who owns firearms should have an AR, a pump shotgun of one of the three major brands, a combat style pistol in whatever caliber they like, and a .22LR rifle to practice with - and know how to use and maintain these tools to the best of their ability.

What's fun (and very American) about an AR, is that it's a grown up Lego kit. You buy the basic setup, and you build it up however you want...or you can buy one pre-setup. You could have a classic Keep It Super Simple (KISS) rifle like they used in Vietnam, you could have a modern close quarters (CQ) setup rifle, you could have an AR setup with multiple optics and extended magazines for 3-Gun sports, and they even do "space guns" and Benchrest and other types of precision shooting.

If I was looking for a buy it and use it AR, I'd probably pick up one of the M4 Flat-tops that have BUIS (Back Up Iron Sights).

https://danieldefense.com/rifles/mid-length.html

Or for a little less the S&W AR they built for Magpul.

If you wanted an AK, something modernized like this one would do well.

https://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/...s_id/411546098

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post #13 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 10:54 AM Thread Starter
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I can't access these websites at work, but for a basic out of the box setup, what would someone expect to spend for something new/used?

Adam
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post #14 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 11:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muddy View Post
I can't access these websites at work, but for a basic out of the box setup, what would someone expect to spend for something new/used?
cheaper side of basic, 800

something to pass-on/keep and upgrade, 1200

something to donate blood for and compete with 2400-3


If only you knew someone in aurora that could give you a run down on this stuff and that he spends a few hours a day studying the AR platform and designing components for it.

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post #15 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 11:11 AM
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If you wanted an AK, something modernized like this one would do well.

https://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/...s_id/411546098
I have 3 buddies with this AK variant and shot it myself - very nicely setup, but a bit ugly rifle

the MI-like foregrip is good and holds zero after a bit of torquing the bolts in right order and the action is relaible. chrome-lined barrel/chamber and assembled with better quality than century, though using the same romy single stack reciever opened up for double stack
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post #16 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 11:13 AM Thread Starter
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cheaper side of basic, 800

something to pass-on/keep and upgrade, 1200

something to donate blood for and compete with 2400-3


If only you knew someone in aurora that could give you a run down on this stuff and that he spends a few hours a day studying the AR platform and designing components for it.
Maybe we'll have to set up a date night!

Actually, if there were a few people who wanted some beginner basics, maybe a Saturday or Sunday morning "walk thru" class would be a good idea - if you would be willing to do some teaching. Same for you Andy, I'm sure you could probably give a good run-down too.

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post #17 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 11:16 AM
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Sounds like we need to do a CLSB range day at ASC.

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We are doing a reloading class next but we often shoot the shit in the garage just having fun. After Andy becomes a free man again in a couple months I plan on dragging him out west with us to ASC quite often he just doesn't know it yet.

I live over by montgomery rd and east of eola as a reference point.

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post #19 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 11:23 AM
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[QUOTE=

IMHO, every American who owns firearms should have an AR, a pump shotgun of one of the three major brands, a combat style pistol in whatever caliber they like, and a .22LR rifle to practice with - and know how to use and maintain these tools to the best of their


^^^^ this. I have both and from my perspective, my ak is the most fun to shoot for having fun at the range and ammo is super cheap you can get 20rnds for 3.99 @ cabelas all the time. The AK is dummy proof with cleaning and.will shoot anything you throw in it or after you throw it in something. It is a beat the shit out of and will keep on tickin weapon. With that being said if you want something more precise and has way more acc. options I would go AR. Nice thing is, it is like legos. even if you pick up a base model you can add to it as you go. The add ons are endless. Couple things I do and dont like about the AR compared to the AK is 3x's longer to clean!!! Rounds are more money and the AK you can shoot cheap steal case thru, wouldnt do that with my AR. AR has way more options and interchangeablity. AR is going to give you more options long range/accuracy and platform. I love both guns. I bought my DPMS mil spec with SS chrome lined barrel, trigger kit, and titanium firing pin for about 700 OTD... My AK was about 425. both new. I wouldn't get rid of either. This is just my opinion.
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post #20 of 37 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
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We are doing a reloading class next but we often shoot the shit in the garage just having fun. After Andy becomes a free man again in a couple months I plan on dragging him out west with us to ASC quite often he just doesn't know it yet.

I live over by montgomery rd and east of eola as a reference point.
I've never objected to being "dragged out," especially if Eric, Mr. I live 90 seconds away, drives.

Need to function test my M1A, which was short stroking the last time I had her out (a while ago), and get it re-zeroed. And the AR I built has only been sighted in "casually" against a swinging moving target at 25 yards, so it needs proper zeroing too.
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We are doing a reloading class next but we often shoot the shit in the garage just having fun. After Andy becomes a free man again in a couple months I plan on dragging him out west with us to ASC quite often he just doesn't know it yet.

I live over by montgomery rd and east of eola as a reference point.
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I've never objected to being "dragged out," especially if Eric, Mr. I live 90 seconds away, drives.

Need to function test my M1A, which was short stroking the last time I had her out (a while ago), and get it re-zeroed. And the AR I built has only been sighted in "casually" against a swinging moving target at 25 yards, so it needs proper zeroing too.
Sorry guys, I've been super busy with work, and haven't even made the range myself lately. Let alone worked on the reloading class stuff. Just swamped.

Speaking of which, I have a big software upgrade I need to get back to.

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post #22 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Does anyone have any opinions on the DPMS Tactical - Panther 5.56 NATO Oracle? Looks like I can find it for about $700 if that's a decent price...

Adam
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post #23 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 11:05 AM
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decent price, but not something I would snag. Especially since it's something you may have to love for the next few years.

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post #24 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 11:21 AM
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Does anyone have any opinions on the DPMS Tactical - Panther 5.56 NATO Oracle? Looks like I can find it for about $700 if that's a decent price...
good luck with that, I heard they are price gouching and charging twice as much now. If you can pick it up for 700 i would buy as many as you can.
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post #25 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 11:34 AM
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Does anyone have any opinions on the DPMS Tactical - Panther 5.56 NATO Oracle? Looks like I can find it for about $700 if that's a decent price...
Have 2 DPMS and love them. Would only buy them. Ive upgraded the shit out of it but it eats every thing. Worth every penny

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post #26 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 11:43 AM Thread Starter
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So there's some varying opinion on these...

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Originally Posted by FiReBReTHa View Post
decent price, but not something I would snag. Especially since it's something you may have to love for the next few years.
What about it makes it something to avoid? The reviews online for it seem to be pretty good with very few problems, especially after initial break in. Keep in mind I'm a baller on a budget so this type of price point does make it a little more attractive...

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Originally Posted by bignickyh View Post
Have 2 DPMS and love them. Would only buy them. Ive upgraded the shit out of it but it eats every thing. Worth every penny
Have you found any limitations on what you can upgrade on it? Any problems?

Also, after doing some looking I found the S&W AR and saw that the one at Cabela's is called it a "sport". Does it feature something that gives it that title or is it just a marketing name?

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post #27 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bignickyh View Post
Have 2 DPMS and love them. Would only buy them. Ive upgraded the shit out of it but it eats every thing. Worth every penny

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Do you have pics of your upgraded toys anywhere on here?

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post #28 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 12:04 PM
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just what happens when you mass produce it loses a bit of QC. just having some components that are poorly done but as nick did you can also upgrade anything that gives you issues as long as its not the major parts such as barrel/upper since then its cost ineffective.

thats the fun part about the AR is the abundance of components you can get for it, (when they are in stock)

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post #29 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 01:46 PM
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post #30 of 37 (permalink) Old 12-31-2012, 01:48 PM
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