best entry-level AR-15/M-16? (Read 12456 times)

Kukailimoku

best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« on: March 15, 2017, 10:23:43 PM »
 
Okay, I have a feeling this may be one of those "ask ten people and get 42 different answers" kind of question, but as a noob, this is the kind of dumb thing I'll do. Here goes:

What's the best (or good enough) entry-level AR-15/M-16?

First consideration is price, but I willing to spend more if the better features/quality justify it; don't want to buy pure junk but do want something cheap but good enuff. First black gun for me.

Looking at the 600-700 range, willing to go up to about 900 if that one would be significantly better than 700/800 one, but price is prime concern for me for this first gun. Also, something that's likely to be commonplace & in-stock in most dealers, nothing too exotic nor production line backorder. Use will be plain old target shooting (no competitions) and general home defense (nothing sexy). Not looking for beau coup accessories, but maybe a red dot sight tho prefer if it came with iron sights out of the box. Don't care length, don't care if have or don't have M-16 style front sight, hand guards. I'm open to almost anything. Just want cheap but good.

Ideas?

dogman

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2017, 10:53:13 PM »

rklapp

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2017, 11:06:11 PM »
Questions to ask...
Buy local or internet?
If internet, what FFL to choose? (http://fflgundealers.net/transfer/hawaii/)
AR-15 or 300BLK? (This is less of a silly question than you might think.)
Iron sights or scope?
If scope, how much to spend on a scope because anything less than $100 is a waste of time?
Picatinny hand guard or keymod? (I definitely rec a free floating hand guard.)

Other than that, welcome to the addiction. It's like black tar heroin. Once you get that sweet taste in your veins, you can never have enough (apparently).
Yahh! Freedom and justice shall always prevail over tyranny, Babysitter Girl!
https://ronsreloading.wordpress.com/

zippz

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2017, 11:06:22 PM »
Depends what is your primary purpose for it.  Close quarters shooting, plinking, highpower rifle, precision rifle, hunting, self defense,   etc.

Nevermind I see target shooting.  I'd go with a 16" heavy barrel which is better for precision and also helps with accuracy standing.  Chrome lined barrels are good in that it's easier to clean and long lasting.  I think most low cost AR15's nowadays shoot great.

If you have never shot a rifle before, I suggest you go to the range to get some coaching, take a class, and find out what kinds of things you want in a rifle.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2017, 11:15:39 PM by zippz »
Join the Hawaii Firearms Coalition at www.hifico.org.  Hawaii's new non-profit gun rights organization focused on lobbying and grassroots activism.

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rklapp

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2017, 11:18:07 PM »
I do marvel at the number of high end firearms that are for sale here. I guess the low end firearms get sold faster than the electrons can reach the server.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2017, 11:29:01 PM by rklapp »
Yahh! Freedom and justice shall always prevail over tyranny, Babysitter Girl!
https://ronsreloading.wordpress.com/

zippz

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2017, 11:18:31 PM »
Most low cost AR15's work great nowadays.  Another thing you want to look at is the trigger.  Milspec triggers on lower cost rifles are a bit heavier and not as crisp as more expensive rifles or aftermarket kits.  Though you don't want too light of a trigger on a self defense gun.
Join the Hawaii Firearms Coalition at www.hifico.org.  Hawaii's new non-profit gun rights organization focused on lobbying and grassroots activism.

Hawaii Shooting Calendar - https://calendar.google.com/calendar/embed?src=practicalmarksman.com_btllod1boifgpp8dcjnbnruhso%40group.calendar.google.com&ctz=Pacific/Honolulu

changemyoil66

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2017, 12:38:11 AM »
A basic AR will cost about 700ish. Most gun stores have them in stock.
Remember, its the indian, not the arrow.

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XL iced_coffee

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2017, 05:33:53 AM »
cant  go wrong with a colt 6920 you now get the ones without furniture around $850. You could build it however  you want.

aaronc5362

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2017, 08:11:59 AM »
Gahh so many options!

Palmetto state armory always have deals on uppers (complete) for 400-600 depending what you want. And buy/ build a lower on your own. I suggest atleast get the lower receiver locally cause the ffl fee. Uppers don't require ffl so you can ship it directly to your house. The lower may cost in total 350 if you wait for sales on brownells psa, midwayusa etc. they always have 10$ off of 100$ spent, and so on. You can minus iron sights and get a straight holosun red dot (I'm interested in the acss model myself)

As the other person said, dpms oracle, Anderson manufacturing etc all make entry level rifles. My friend has a oracle and it shoots pretty well out the box. I think he paid 700 3-4 years ago but idk pricing now. He just added a comp m4 . Kept the rest stock.

Best way is to go to gun stores and look what they have in stock. There's always a sale in atleast one gun shop on Oahu. Sorry idk what island your from exactly.

Good luck!

stangzilla

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2017, 08:27:50 AM »
I think you should narrow down what you want in your AR
free float barrel, upgraded trigger, and what kind of upgraded trigger, handguard keymod or quad rail or standard style or other, buttstock, standard front sight or flip up, red dot or scope or prism scope or just iron sights, barrel length and heavy or not, barrel SS melonite chrome lined, etc
but I also think that you wont really know exactly what you want in an AR until you shoot it for a while and get to know what you want and what works for you
you can always modify your AR later too

have you ever thought about building your own AR? its not difficult at all.
I got my first AR over a year ago. it was the standard style front iron sight and plastic 2 piece handguard. you know, your basic AR.
it was a Core15, great rifle. also picked up 3 lowers at the same time. 
in 2 months I built the 3 lowers.  I built the lowers basically knowing very little about AR's. just using a youtube vid and a post from AR15.com to teach me how to build the lowers.
after building the 3 AR's I thought to myself that I don't need 4 AR's, and I sold the Core15.  not that it was a bad rifle, its a great rifle.  I just wanted to keep the ones that I built myself.

I see AR's online going for cheap now.  Ruger AR556 going for $400-something, S&W m&p going for about the same.  and other brands going for cheap too.

take your time in deciding.   :shaka:

dirtylickins

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Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2017, 09:20:01 AM »
I think AERO PRECISION  should have a mention here. I have found it nice quality at a economic cost. And yes the colt is also  good.

aaronc5362

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2017, 10:01:07 AM »
If you YouTube "stop buying ar15s" there's a good video on why you should build your own. Tbh I thought I was going to keep my stock 6920. But I modified it to what I wanted. Spent a whole lot of extra money and had a whole lot of unused parts(some sold, some threw in the trash). Stangzilla has a good point in building your own. I built 8 so far. Kept 2 only. Maybe you'll cherish the rifle more and save some $$ in the process as you won't need a lot of stuff if you modify a standard ar from a store.

And dirty lickins - aero got some good stuff too!

macsak

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2017, 10:20:31 AM »
I think AERO PRECISION  should have a mention here. I have found it nice quality at a economic cost.

you mean an economical cost?

flaboy808

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #13 on: March 16, 2017, 11:10:13 AM »
you mean an economical cost?

Maybe he's economically challenged.  :stopjack:  :D
The Supreme Court has ruled that you, as an individual, have no right to protection by the police. Their only obligation is to protect "society".

Shoboshi

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #14 on: March 16, 2017, 01:13:10 PM »
Savage MSR

Flapp_Jackson

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2017, 02:45:23 PM »
I'd first ask what "best" means.  That's subjective and depends on your planned use and preferences.

To me, the BEST AR15 has:

1. MILSPEC parts
2. upper and lower receivers from quality sources -- matched would be nice
3. barrel of the legal & correct length for my needs -- longer range adds length and weight plus may change rifle twist
4. free-floated barrel -- prefer mid-length for gas system myself
5. mid-length handguard for both mid-length and carbine-length barrels -- gives longer sight radius than carbine-length
6. fold-down front & rear BUIS
7. Adjustable stock with good cheek wield
8. As few proprietary parts as possible.  Don't want to be locked into a single (expensive) provider for parts
9. Direct impingement is fine for normal use, but long periods without cleaning might warrant a piston system
10. Picatinny rail from rear of upper receiver to front of handguard for mounting optics of any length at any eye relief.
11. Ambidextrous safety lever
12. B.A.D. lever

If I can get the majority of those things on an existing purchase, it saves me having to buy piecemeal and modify the gun.  Small mods, like the ambi safety and B.A.D., can be added on any rifle at a minimal cost.  Changing out a gas system and handrail will cost a couple hundred bucks at least for a low profile gas block, front sight,  handguard, and incidentals.

« Last Edit: March 21, 2017, 07:35:19 PM by Flapp_Jackson »
Surely Not Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting.

tim808

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2017, 09:50:13 PM »
Online

Colts carbine gas oems are $690 just add stock, hand guard, trigger guard and buis

Bcm blem mid length gas uppers are $400.  Add $80 toolcraft bcg, $40 buis and $40 hand guard to complete the upper.  You can build a lower for about $150

^ if you want something that is "duty" grade with a chrome lined barrel and only a few hundred more than a budget AR with a nitrited barrel.   Toyota hi-lux vs Nissan Frontier, both will get you to the grocery store but if you had to get out of dodge which set of keys would you grab?

That said, the ruger ar appeals to the tightwad in me.....must resist.....they are < $500 online and with the savings you can get 500 rds of ammo.

If you get a budget ar, try to stay with a company with good customer service.

Whatever you decide, it is the right choice for you.  Have fun and post pics!!

(Check out m4carbine.com they are just brutal on anyone that mentions PSA, Bustmaster, DPMS, etc.   Seems like a lot of them carry or used to carry an ar for a living)
« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 10:29:10 PM by tim808 »

Flapp_Jackson

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2017, 10:01:15 PM »
If you want quality, but don't want to pay too much for a custom setup, Colt has 2 OEM models.  They are the basic parts that make a rifle but without the furniture.

Pick either the OEM1 with a standard A2 fixed front sight / gas block, or the OEM2 with the low profile gas block and no front sight.

Then you can add the furniture you like, customizing the look and feel but still keeping a factory-built Colt AR-15.

It's another option.

http://www.colt.com/Portals/0/Specs/2016/LE6920-OEM1.pdf

http://www.colt.com/Portals/0/Specs/2016/LE6920-OEM2.pdf

OGC has had them in stock.

https://t.co/mY5KFiiVzj
Surely Not Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting.

jc2721

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2017, 11:00:20 PM »
Check out the Gun Show this weekend--there will be a lot of rifles and accessories available.  If you find something you like and it's in your price range then buy it.  Don't make the mistake of walking away thinking you'll be back later to buy it--odds are that someone else will spot it and buy it out from under you.

I'll have some ammo and a NIB 6920 for sale.  There'll be a lot of used rifles for sale, but unless you know what you're looking at/for, I'd recommend sticking to new guns (at least they come with a manual).

Speedtek can help you put together a rifle, if you're looking for a customized piece (and he'll be there at the show).

Good luck!

zhuzhits

Re: best entry-level AR-15/M-16?
« Reply #19 on: March 18, 2017, 12:12:10 AM »
Google "slickguns" use the search function to find deals.
 
As others have said, I would also reccomend a Colt oem ~$690 plus $30-45 shipping, plus $25 FFL fee.  Handguards($20-150), buttstock($20-100) and trigger guard($10) are very easy to install and are most often swapped out anyway. What we care about are the gun internals & barrel, which Colts are very decent at. They also tend to hold value in case you decide to sell & upgrade. Aero precision is also a fair choice.

 I would def buy online, save an average of $50-200, YMMV. If you've never ordered a firearm online, don't be put off by the whole FFL process, it's fairly simple. Shop around, look for free shipping and or coupon codes and save an extra couple extra $. If you do buy local, google the item/price on the spot, so you don't get raped.