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AR15 rivals worth checking out?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by The Exile, Jun 7, 2019.

  1. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

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    Even within the AR family, there's now a lot of divergence. I've been collecting AR's since 1968, and I've noticed that there has been an explosion of options in the last few years, so that some of the offerings now are hardly recognizable as classic AR's. I've made it a rule to more or less stick to the military configuration. Otherwise the choices are just overwhelming.
     
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  2. DerMerchant

    DerMerchant Member

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    On a functional basis there really isn't much difference between the stuff you mentioned and the AR. They all function (if you get a good one), It's just that the AR is the American rifle, and it is easy to source guns and parts. The AR is the top dog here for good reason, it works and has the US military backing it up, with a lot of R&D and an industrial base.
     
  3. Tater&Egg

    Tater&Egg Member

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    It's hard to beat the AR in terms of cost, practicality, and overall effectiveness. What is driving, in part I believe, the increasing interest in .223/5.56 variants are the senseless and onerous regulations certain states are using to neuter these rifles.

    In MA, if I want a collapsible or folding stock, we're talking about paying nearly $2k for a 25 year old (pre-1994 AWB) rifle, or lower receiver that costs nearly as much, just to get started. Throw in a reasonable optic, now you're getting closer to $3k. Obviously, deals can still be found, but this is by no means exaggerating the costs (this is a state where Gen 2-3 used Glocks are routinely sold for $600-$700)

    This is why I went with a Tavor recently. They're definitely not cheap, but to get an AR to be anywhere close to what I wanted, it actually would have been more expensive. With the Tavor, there is no stock to pin, and it's as close to a free-state rifle as I'll probably get.
     
  4. mrmike7189

    mrmike7189 Member

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    Me too....I have a 581 series Mini 14 with wood stock /blued steel.
    Sadly, I cannot buy an AR15 in Massachusetts anymore thanks to an Attorney General who banned them along with the AK47 rifles.
     
  5. cougar1717

    cougar1717 Member

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    Popularity? Nope. After the AWB ended in 2004, there was still a general perception of AR-15 rifles being "for military use" or otherwise scary. At that time, when people saw one at the range, they asked what seem like weird questions now: "Is that legal to own?" "Are you in the military?" etc. When a 2008 democratic president and congress made threats somewhere between registration and another ban of 30 round, magazine fed semi-autos, people responded with their wallets and made it the most popular rifle in the USA. It was similar to the mid 90's, when everyone got their first home computer with Windows 95. Questions - what's good, what's bad? What's mil spec? What is commerical? Full auto vs semi auto carriers. Parkerizing under the FSB, etc.

    The aftermarket exploded, with every little piece of modularity was either CNC'd or injection molded into something new, improved, and a must have for every would be "operator."
    Now it is strange to go to a typical shooting range and not see an AR-15. Literally, everybody has one... and they want to tell you about their parts list... or caliber other than 223... or optic... etc. I mean no disrespect to the OP or well meaning people just looking for information, but now, it feels like those who ask questions like "I'm interested in one of these AR-15's. What can you tell me about them?" remind me of the last person who wants a tribal tattoo around their bicep or the guy who still has a flip phone. Again, no disrespect, it's just that the market has advanced so much and literally they are everywhere, except localities that have in some way "neutered" them.

    They tried, but failed. The best chance was with the "modern AR-180 designs" when the military was at least testing some of these types of rifles. These are gas piston, with recoil systems that do not require the buffer tube. Think Beretta ARX 100, Bushmaster ACR, HK G36, etc.
    The big problem with these is that people got used to the AR-15's modularity. "What do you mean, I can't change the grip... or handguard... or mount a flashlight literally anywhere?" Add in high cost for the competitors. Then lack of sales, lack of aftermarket support, and lack of availability for most people.

    If one of the AR-180 designs had been chosen by the military, this may be a different story.

    But seriously, everyday, people can purchase a stripped lower from a gun store (or have it transferred), then purchase a parts kit online. It is possible to do all this and have a functioning rifle for $400 (or less). At that price point, you don't have "the best of the best," but it is hard to beat the value.
     
  6. lionking

    lionking Member

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    In .223/5.56mm I can't think of a rival. In 7.62x51mm a decent rival is the M1A. Fell bad for those living in states that are banned from having them, way things are going we all might be banned eventually.
     
  7. marksman13

    marksman13 Member

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    You absolutely can not find a better rifle than the AR-15 at current prices. I’ve got ARs, SCARs, M1As, a Mini-14, and AK variants in the safe. The ARs and SCARs are the only ones that get shot on a regular basis. They are accurate, reliable and ergonomic. Mags are cheap. Ammo is cheap and of good quality. Parts and accessories are everywhere and can be had at low cost. It is the American rifle. Buy a couple and be glad.
     
  8. lionking

    lionking Member

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    In terms of reliability and cheap ammo a AK from certain sources is also. Not as accurate as a AR , but fun also. Never tried a SCAR , prices are way high and just too box looking for me.
     
  9. marksman13

    marksman13 Member

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    Honestly doubt my AKs ever have another hundred rounds out through them. Reliability is good. Accuracy is mediocre. Ergonomics SUCK. Mounting optics is ridiculous compared to an AR or SCAR. They’ll hang around, but I just won’t shoot them much. Some people love them. I just bought them because Barack Obama was the president.
     
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  10. 303 hunter

    303 hunter Member

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    I’ve got 2 AR’s in 5.56, 2 in 6.8 SPC, 3 in 7.62x39, and 2 in 450 Bushmaster. They cover the spectrum of anything I can hunt or target shoot in my area. The 450’s are my favorite because I like the power!

    Show me another rifle platform that provides that modularity and I’ll kiss your shorts. Haters are gonna hate....
     
  11. entropy

    entropy Member

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    It was foisted on the military by bean counters who were looking at the bottom dollar. That said, it was improved continuously over 50+ years, (My issue M16A1 was as old as I was!) and is now a decent rifle (M16A4) and carbine (M4 variants). Best of the best is subjective and hard to answer.

    That is definitely a reason for it's popularity.

    There are commercial versions of the G36; the UMP is one example. I suspect there aren't commercial versions of the SA-80 because it was not that good. I certainly was unimpressed with the samples the British Artillery guys brought with them when training the 7th's Arty on the Light Gun. FAMAS....:rofl:

    That about sums it up.
     
  12. mshootnit

    mshootnit Member

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    The AR15/ M16 is not an inherently reliable rifle. If built right, and employed along with quality magazines and quality ammo, it can be reliable. However, use cheap magazines, or an upper without m4 feedramps, you will see hiccups. There have been and will continue to be warriors killed with jammed M16's in their hands. In that category alone there are many rifles which are worthy competitors. A good straight Russian AK74 for example. No one will ever win a land war in RoossEEa as long as the sons of Kievan Rus' have the AK-74 in their hands (unless the Mongolians get the band back together). But the AR shines in accuracy and Optics mounting.
     
  13. marksman13

    marksman13 Member

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    So, you’re saying that improperly built AR-15s are less reliable than properly built AKs? I don’t think you’ll find anybody to argue that point. That said, a properly built AR is just as reliable as an AK and is more accurate, more adaptable to the end user and much better designed for a modern fighting rifle in terms of adding lights and other necessities. I’ve seen AKs fail and I’ve seen ARs fail. The failure rates I’ve observed have been roughly the same across those two platforms. If you prefer an AK for ergonomics, that’s your choice, but the narrative that AKs are some unstoppable force is a bit ridiculous.
     
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  14. GunnyUSMC

    GunnyUSMC Member

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    Truly stated by someone that has never used ether rifle in combat. I carried the M16A1 and the A2. I used the M16A2 in combat against the AK47. At the end of the day i had ammo for my M16A2 and an AK47 that someone no longer had any use for. The saying is true, The first one to run out of ammo losses the fight.
     
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  15. lionking

    lionking Member

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    Like I said I can't think of a good alternative when it comes to 5.56mm/.223 AR but have heard good things about the Galil and FN FNC but real ones will cost A LOT. Maybe a Steyr AUG but bullpup isn't my cup of tea.
    pix142680815.jpg pix942738019.jpg
     
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