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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I hate to just sign up on this forum and ask the community a question that probably has been beaten to death, but I read some of the posts here and this seems to be a friendlier forum than a lot I've passed through. I am in the market for an AR 15 and have done quite a bit of research but need real peoples input since most of the reviews tend to be close in nature. I have shotguns,SKS,and numerous handguns so I am on about a $800-$!000 budget or my wife of 30 years will band me to where ever folks are banded to. I am not particularly loyal or leaning towards any company but would like to become loyal to one and that only happens when you get a good product and I am hoping that you all can help point me in the right direction....
 

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What is the intended use for the rifle? That will help out in determining make, model etc. S&W and Windham Weaponry make some very decent quality AR15s for good prices, generally speaking. But if you intend to hunt, compete or otherwise, there could be other alternatives for type of rifle, configuration and even caliber choice for the platform.
 

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Welcome

I hate to just sign up on this forum and ask the community a question that probably has been beaten to death, but I read some of the posts here and this seems to be a friendlier forum than a lot I've passed through. I am in the market for an AR 15 and have done quite a bit of research but need real peoples input since most of the reviews tend to be close in nature. I have shotguns,SKS,and numerous handguns so I am on about a $800-$!000 budget or my wife of 30 years will band me to where ever folks are banded to. I am not particularly loyal or leaning towards any company but would like to become loyal to one and that only happens when you get a good product and I am hoping that you all can help point me in the right direction....
Assuming AR15=5.56/.223 caliber as your price point indicates....

I have heard nothing bad about del-ton. You may even have some left over for upgrades.

https://www.del-ton.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=DTSPORT
 

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At that price, I would hunt for a Smith and Wesson M&P. well made rifles.
Also keep checking Walmart for the Colts. Sometimes they come in at 1100-1200. Worth the extra couple hundred.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
" this seems to be a friendlier forum than a lot I've passed through" Really, Wow, what other forums have you been on....I want to avoid those....LOL!
Welcome, have fun and when the language bullets start flying, bob and weave, bob and weave!!!!
Oh,I got pretty thick skin,some of the other AR sites remind of going into an unfamiliar bar back in the day and everyone there gives you the evil eye because you are not one of the regulars or just ignore you all together....
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
What is the intended use for the rifle? That will help out in determining make, model etc. S&W and Windham Weaponry make some very decent quality AR15s for good prices, generally speaking. But if you intend to hunt, compete or otherwise, there could be other alternatives for type of rifle, configuration and even caliber choice for the platform.
Not really a competitive shooter,got other weapons for hunting just would rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it. 223/5.56 M4 is something that I would like to add to my arsenal.It would be shot and used. I am reading up and doing research on ARs and want to get something of quality in my price range and want to get some input from real folks....
 

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I have an M&P sport upper (bought it off a guy in another forum). I wanted the upper receiver it has and like the barrel twist, but prefer mid-length gas as it is a little less snappy on recoil and easier on coponents. I was going to swap barrels for a mid-length gas barrel as opposed to carbine length, until I shot it and I am really impressed with the accuracy of the barrel. I am hovering around MOA when I don't pull the shot, or sneeze, or any other excuse I can come up with. So, I kept the barrel. M&P rifles are great quality for the price, Someone else mentioned Del-ton. I have heard nothing but good from them, haven't used them though. I also am aware of Windham Weaponry rifles, I have handled a few and they are great quality. I haven't shot them, but hear they are pretty accurate and they are well priced rifles, and since I am from Maine, and they are local, I gotta try and support them. I have heard that some of the other large brands of ARs have some QC issues occasionally (not normally) like Bushmaster, DPMS and other large names. Stag is good stuff too, if you can find one, I have had their lowers and they are great. I would suggest a flat-top upper so you have the options of optics or irons (either back up sights or attach a carry handle sight). I hope this helps. Keep asking quesitons and we'll try our best to answer.
 

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Nothing fancy but works well is reasonably accurate and would be in your budget:

Kel Tec’s SU-16A.

I don't know today's prices on it but this time last year they were MSRP $650.
 

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A "do everything" AR is conceptually a lightweight, handy carbine with relatively low-power optics.
IMO, the ideal configuration is a 5.56 with 16" lightweight mid-length gas barrel on a flat-top upper with a collapso-stock, a straight-tube 1-4x scope and as many magazines as you can afford.

Adding rails, float tubes, etc. adds a surprising amount of weight to no particular advantage.

You aren't likely to find a factory-built rifle configured as above "off the rack", so you may want to look at building your own. Finding parts right now is something of a challenge, however, so you're faced with that trade-off.

All the above mentioned companies make good guns. Del-Ton is a favorite of mine. If you buy an assembled upper from somebody like Del-Ton, "building" an AR is really just putting all the parts together as though you'd detail stripped it. Just add a stripped lower.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
This is all good stuff and thanks for the input. I do think simple is better and as I go I can figure out what some good accessories would be feasible. I don't really need to get a Ferrari when all I need is a good basic platform that if I feel the need can be upgraded to a higher spec. Do ya'll think that the 1:7 or 1:9 twist in the barrel makes a real big difference in the type of ammo you shoot?
 

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All firearms are unique in that they all like a different ammo. Some 1/7 twists like lighter bullets and some 1/9 like heavy bullets. So it really boils down to your preference. I like a 1/8 twist. My M&P has the 1/8, I have had Black Hole 1/8 barrel and it was crazy accurate, but that is more the barrel rifling and quality than anything. I have used 1/9 and 1/8 twists with great results. I think these twists offer the best of being able to shoot the widest variety of rounds well. But again, it will boil down to what your individual barrel will like and you will have to get different types of ammo and weights to see what your barrel likes, or if you can reload, you can figure it out cheaper than I can. Like others have said, a mid-length gas system is probably the best. If you want accuracy, the heavier the profile, the better, but that is obviously more weight. Its all your preference. However, as someone else said, assembling your own is probably best since you can build exactly what you want instead of buying a rifle and upgrading it later for extra money. No point in spending more to get what you want if you can do it right the first time. But, that requires tools that can quickly add up, but its worth it since you can then work on your own rifle when you want/need to. I began by buying assembled rifles and adding extras later, but it cost too much and I began assembling my own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
All firearms are unique in that they all like a different ammo. Some 1/7 twists like lighter bullets and some 1/9 like heavy bullets. So it really boils down to your preference. I like a 1/8 twist. My M&P has the 1/8, I have had Black Hole 1/8 barrel and it was crazy accurate, but that is more the barrel rifling and quality than anything. I have used 1/9 and 1/8 twists with great results. I think these twists offer the best of being able to shoot the widest variety of rounds well. But again, it will boil down to what your individual barrel will like and you will have to get different types of ammo and weights to see what your barrel likes, or if you can reload, you can figure it out cheaper than I can. Like others have said, a mid-length gas system is probably the best. If you want accuracy, the heavier the profile, the better, but that is obviously more weight. Its all your preference. However, as someone else said, assembling your own is probably best since you can build exactly what you want instead of buying a rifle and upgrading it later for extra money. No point in spending more to get what you want if you can do it right the first time. But, that requires tools that can quickly add up, but its worth it since you can then work on your own rifle when you want/need to. I began by buying assembled rifles and adding extras later, but it cost too much and I began assembling my own.
I like the idea of assembling my own but I would need to find an LGS to get my parts or that could add up with shipping and FFL fees. I think if I bought an entry level AR and fiddled with it some it would give me a little more insight as to what and how I would like to assemble one.
 

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I would have to recommend Palmetto State Armory. You get a lot of bang for your buck there. FN hammer forged barrels, everything as near as possible to Mil-Spec (if that matters to you) and a standard flat top carbine can usually be had for $850 -$1000.
 
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