VW Vortex - Volkswagen Forum banner

1 - 20 of 106 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,599 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So the idea of picking up an AR-15 has been rattling around in my head. Over the Christmas holiday while in Florida I had the opportunity to shoot a couple of different AR's, one a Sig 716, the other two were custom builds with probably $2,000+ invested in each gun. A friend here in Michigan has a Radical Arms AR that he really likes. I'll have to shoot it, soon.

Unfortunately, my budget will fall in the under $1,000 range for gun and $300 for optics, light, etc.. I've been checking out various YouTube "reviews" and really like the Springfield Armory Saint, except for the hand guard. Would swap that out for a free float.

I'm going to a gun show in a few weeks and will see what I can find and see if there might be something else that strikes my fancy. I don't want to build my own, I don't have the time or patience.

Now for the questions -
Any recommendations / real world experience with sub $1,000 AR's? Which manufacturers to avoid, models to skip, etc.
How many on here currently own an AR? What do you like about shooting them, what don't you like?
Can anyone recommend a good AR-15 Forum to join?

Out for now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,613 Posts
I haven't followed the Saint closely enough but $1000 would probably get you a basic Colt, the Saint, a S&W M&P15, or an FNH .mil copy. While a lot of people will advise building your own, I think there is value in a well-built, purpose built rifle with a warranty.
 

·
Registered
'16 Golf R (wife's)
Joined
·
39,963 Posts
I get emails every day with complete, name-brand AR-15s for $6-700 from Sig, Colt, S&W, etc.

Or you can even go with a complete lower on sale from from PSA for $160 and then find a good complete quality upper just about anywhere for ~$3-400. That's the route I went, picked up a Magpul blem lower from PSA for $150 and then spent $400 on an upper from a vendor at ar15.com that was blowing out a bunch of uppers they made for their website photos. A few inexpensive upgrades later and:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41,655 Posts


I've got three ARs. A match grade AR15 and a match grade AR10.

Wait that was only two. Those are around $4-5k with optics each.

My favorite is my ultra budget AR15.

$450 with an Anderson Arms lower.

https://22mods4all.com/en/

I spent eight years as a Marine Corps Rifleman in GWOT. I find it hilarious when people drop so much money on ARs, who A) don't know how to shoot, or B) never shoot.

The rifles we were issued and qualed with were pure garbage. A $500 S&W is plenty for a plinker.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Banned by John until they unbanned me
Joined
·
9,077 Posts
$450 with an Anderson Arms lower.
My favorite is the Anderson lower with the built-in trigger guard and an Anderson lightweight upper without a dust cover. $80 for an upper/lower set with that kind fit is a bargain.

It's a great rifle for the hobbyist. With the right barrel and a two stage trigger, anyone can build a free floated 20 inch barrelled rifle with a twist rate to suit his preference that will be reasonably accurate and weigh under seven pounds with an optic. I don't begrudge anyone his $2500 AR, but it seems to miss some of the advantages of an easy to assemble rifle.
 

·
I got a poop emoji! CHEVY!!
Joined
·
11,983 Posts
A $500 S&W is plenty for a plinker.
My AR15 is a S&W with a couple basic modifications and mid grade optic. All in all it probably ended up costing me about $1,200 or so. I think it's a great platform for the money.

Actually, it's probably closer to $1,500 with the rings and BUIS.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41,655 Posts
My favorite is the Anderson lower with the built-in trigger guard and an Anderson lightweight upper without a dust cover. $80 for an upper/lower set with that kind fit is a bargain.

It's a great rifle for the hobbyist. With the right barrel and a two stage trigger, anyone can build a free floated 20 inch barrelled rifle with a twist rate to suit his preference that will be reasonably accurate and weigh under seven pounds with an optic. I don't begrudge anyone his $2500 AR, but it seems to miss some of the advantages of an easy to assemble rifle.
That is what I did. I have an upgraded barrel, bcg, and high end lower parts/ trigger.

I built two Andersons and gifted one for Christmas.

My AR15 is a S&W with a couple basic modifications and mid grade optic. All in all it probably ended up costing me about $1,200 or so. I think it's a great platform for the money.

Actually, it's probably closer to $1,500 with the rings and BUIS.
:thumbup:
 

·
Banned by John until they unbanned me
Joined
·
9,077 Posts
Actually, it's probably closer to $1,500 with the rings and BUIS.
I wouldn't beat yourself up too much on prices. The market over the last five years has been nuts. I sold a complete upper for peanuts just before Sandyhook; a month later, prices were stratospheric. I remember almost buying a BCG from Brownells for over $200 because I couldn't find one in stock anywhere, and thinking I got a deal a few weeks later at $170 from Palmetto State. Recently I've seen BCG for $80.

I never fell for the crazy pricing on magazines, maybe the one mistake I haven't made.

If you felt like putting together a spare on a modest budget, this would be a fine time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
Just started my own build on my ar15... Granted i knew nothing about guns a few months ago... But generelly i wouldn't buy a complete gun because generally you gonna end up swapping out parts to better suit yourself. There are so many.. I personally like psa alot as there daily deals are crazy good.. So far iv gotten a anderson lower. Magpul trigger guard. Psa polished trigger . psa buffer tube . moe grip and a blackhawk stock. Got most of these from crazy sales an i think im at $140 so far .. And right now daniel defense has a assembled upper with barrel an slanted free float for $200.. Keep a look out for deals. Be patient an have fun. More rewarding buildin it yourself i find

Sent from my LG-H918 using Tapatalk
 

·
Banned by John until they unbanned me
Joined
·
9,077 Posts
More rewarding buildin it yourself i find

Sent from my LG-H918 using Tapatalk
I don't build these because I am handy, but because no one made the configuration in which I was interested, or if they did, the price made no sense. I had difficulty just finding a 1:12 20 inch barrel at all a few years ago. Also, if modest weight is your goal, just buying the parts separately will save quite a bit.

If you are building, I recommend setting a goal and a budget. It is very easy to loose your way in sea of aftermarket parts and end up with more money spent than you intended.
 

·
Registered
'16 Golf R (wife's)
Joined
·
39,963 Posts
More rewarding buildin it yourself i find
I really wanted to build my AR completely from scratch but I would have to spend close to $200 just to buy the necessary tools to put it together. Not to mention I have nowhere to install a bench vise.
 

·
Banned by John until they unbanned me
Joined
·
9,077 Posts
I really wanted to build my AR completely from scratch but I would have to spend close to $200 just to buy the necessary tools to put it together. Not to mention I have nowhere to install a bench vise.
That was the hard part for me, too. You can get by with a $20 vise block and $15 barrel wrench. I also bought a $10 torque wrench at Harbor Freight, but it isn't a necessity.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,349 Posts
I really wanted to build my AR completely from scratch but I would have to spend close to $200 just to buy the necessary tools to put it together. Not to mention I have nowhere to install a bench vise.
I used my cars tools to install my lower parts an trigger group.. O an YouTube of course... A hammer and screw driver is all i used.

Sent from my LG-H918 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
S4, B8.5, M/T, Stg3
Joined
·
8,201 Posts
You guys are such enablers, I was just strolling along and clicked this thread, now I have an urge to build an AR! :laugh:

Since I've never owned an AR, are there any cons on having iron sights?
 

·
Banned by John until they unbanned me
Joined
·
9,077 Posts
You guys are such enablers, I was just strolling along and clicked this thread, now I have an urge to build an AR! :laugh:

Since I've never owned an AR, are there any cons on having iron sights?
A very flexible configuration is the front sight/gas block fixed, but a flat top picatinny receiver. You can mount a rear iron sight via the picatinny (and ARs have pretty good iron sights), or you can mount an optic at 1.4 to 1.5 inches for the centerline of the scope. I do this with 2.5x scopes and haven't any issues with a ghost image of the front sight.

If you know you won't use iron sights, you can just leave them off. If you are using your AR as you would a Remington 700, you don't need iron sights on it any more than you would the 700.
 

·
Registered
S4, B8.5, M/T, Stg3
Joined
·
8,201 Posts
I do this with 2.5x scopes and haven't any issues with a ghost image of the front sight.
This was my concern, I should have been more specific, thanks for clearing it up!

I like to have iron sights and a scope, since I like to have a plan B if optics are damaged in the field.
 

·
Banned by John until they unbanned me
Joined
·
9,077 Posts
This was my concern, I should have been more specific, thanks for clearing it up!

I like to have iron sights and a scope, since I like to have a plan B if optics are damaged in the field.
Some guys use a red dot sight with the dot sitting on top of the front sight post. I'm not super-tactical, so I avoid some of the more expensive options that can be put on an AR.

I've never broken an optic, so I don't use BUIS. If I anticipated very rough use for something, like a carbine for home defense, I wouldn't place an optic on it at all. If I wanted to make holes in paper, I wouldn't sweat a scope going screwy. That's just the way I see the issues.

Still, one of the most comfortable and accurate ARs I've had was a BCM flat top with an a2 20 barrel with fixed front sight and plastic, non-free-floated handguard, and a little 2.5x scope. The rifle buttstock and buffer weight make for very low recoil, the weight is reasonable to carry and the accuracy is good enough for normal shooting (as opposed to benchrest range shooting).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,569 Posts
So the idea of picking up an AR-15 has been rattling around in my head. Over the Christmas holiday while in Florida I had the opportunity to shoot a couple of different AR's, one a Sig 716, the other two were custom builds with probably $2,000+ invested in each gun. A friend here in Michigan has a Radical Arms AR that he really likes. I'll have to shoot it, soon.

Unfortunately, my budget will fall in the under $1,000 range for gun and $300 for optics, light, etc.. I've been checking out various YouTube "reviews" and really like the Springfield Armory Saint, except for the hand guard. Would swap that out for a free float.

I'm going to a gun show in a few weeks and will see what I can find and see if there might be something else that strikes my fancy. I don't want to build my own, I don't have the time or patience.

Now for the questions -
Any recommendations / real world experience with sub $1,000 AR's? Which manufacturers to avoid, models to skip, etc.
How many on here currently own an AR? What do you like about shooting them, what don't you like?
Can anyone recommend a good AR-15 Forum to join?

Out for now.
https://www.ar15.com/forums/

https://www.thehighroad.org/index.php

Two good forums that have answered basically any question I have ever asked about anything firearms related and AR15 related.

If you are getting into the AR platform, first thing you want to ask yourself, what is the purpose of this firearm? 300yd tack driver? Home Defense? 50yd shootin the **** with buds at the range?

There's a multitude of options and configurations. If you want to go basic, just get a lower with a carbine buffer tube and a stock to your liking. You can then swap on any number of completed uppers based on your wants/needs. Rifle buffers/stocks add weight which can be very nice, but you may not want a honkin A2 stock when your itch hits to make an M4orgery with lights and lasers etc

Also check local laws. I built my first AR while living in NY and was gimped by so many legal restrictions. Built my newest (and currently only) AR with an 18" upper from PSA and built the lower myself, all told $700 for the rifle. Optics ended up being free due to some mishaps but the Burris MTAC 1-4x24 fit my needs well. I have an astigmatism so red dots bloom badly for me. Even the Eotechs don't focus that well.


Terrible photo but a general idea when it was almost completed.

When you have questions, as you can see, many of us in here have experience with the rifle and would be happy to help.

:thumbup::thumbup:
 
1 - 20 of 106 Posts
Top