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AR Upgrades Question

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AR Upgrades Question

Postby kalos72 » Thu Jul 20, 2017 1:36 pm

My wife and I both have S&W M&P 15's and I want to put together a list of upgrades we can do slowly over time.

I know what some will say "buy a real AR" or something but I cannot break my budget to buy a $2000 AR, but I can use the $500 M&P as a base to make sure I have one first, then upgrade as I can later.

I assume having spare parts, say a lower and upper parts kits is first priority.

Then I was thinking BCG or barrel maybe? What am I look for here, brands, materials, construction? Please provide specifics as you are able.


Thanks!
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Re: AR Upgrades Question

Postby Fullmoon » Thu Jul 20, 2017 4:52 pm

How accurate is your rifle? I have a Rock River M4 carbine and was disappointed with its accuracy. It has a 1 in 9" twist. I shot 55 and 62 grain bullets with no difference in accuracy, it shot a one and a half inch group at 100 yards. I called Rock River and they said to try 69 grain bullets. I loaded a few for a test using some 30 year old IMR 3031 powder and it shot dime sized groups. Real happy with the change. Other than that I have attached a bipod mount ($5) to the underside of the fore stock and invested in a couple of scopes. Mine is a flat top so I got an Eotech 512 red dot holographic sight for close range and a Trijicon ACOG for long range shooting. Both scopes are real accurate and I am pleased with their performance. Have them attached with A.R.M.S. #22 throw lever quick mount rings so I can swap scopes in a hurry without losing the zero. Put a $3 surplus sling on it and that's about all the upgrades I have done. If you demand pinpoint accuracy get an Armalite with the full length barrel with a 1 in 7" twist. These are super accurate right out of the box and can fire the 77 grain ammunition.
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Re: AR Upgrades Question

Postby DR1VENbyKNOWLEDGE » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:49 am

Fullmoon wrote:How accurate is your rifle? I have a Rock River M4 carbine and was disappointed with its accuracy. It has a 1 in 9" twist. I shot 55 and 62 grain bullets with no difference in accuracy, it shot a one and a half inch group at 100 yards. I called Rock River and they said to try 69 grain bullets. I loaded a few for a test using some 30 year old IMR 3031 powder and it shot dime sized groups. Real happy with the change. Other than that I have attached a bipod mount ($5) to the underside of the fore stock and invested in a couple of scopes. Mine is a flat top so I got an Eotech 512 red dot holographic sight for close range and a Trijicon ACOG for long range shooting. Both scopes are real accurate and I am pleased with their performance. Have them attached with A.R.M.S. #22 throw lever quick mount rings so I can swap scopes in a hurry without losing the zero. Put a $3 surplus sling on it and that's about all the upgrades I have done. If you demand pinpoint accuracy get an Armalite with the full length barrel with a 1 in 7" twist. These are super accurate right out of the box and can fire the 77 grain ammunition.



Back in the day(6 yrs ago) I bought the DDM4V5...It was 1300 +DROS/Tax back then....1/7 twist....I've been a self-acknowledged "Fanboy" ever since...I've sent 4 friends over the years to Daniel Defense since and every one out of the box always goes bang and is dead on...quality gear there my friends for out of the box ready. I've run somewhere around 10K+ rounds thru and only had a single serious malfunction that was honestly Op Error(heavy day with about 600 rds and it went dry).... 'nuff said. The only thing I've changed over the years was the charging handle for faster running/ease of use.

I'm chiming in because the EO-Tech you mentioned...I just recently found out about the lawsuit....I personally haven't noticed any issues and decided to keep mine but just be aware of it if you weren't...(Temp changes effect accuracy supposedly...1-4 mil from what I've read)

As to OP....Agreed. Having one is better than none unless that one doesn't go bang....The upper and lower sets on standby for sure....I'd suggest a nicer trigger but would need to understand your uses before recommending one specific(bench? fun? 3gun? etc...)

Here's a great company I use and some charging handle upgrades too just in this link.... https://www.riflegear.com/c-96-charging-handles.aspx lol...They're also local to me (The showroom) but you cant walk in there without expecting a 1/2 -1 hr wait because they take the time to answer questions/are good/ and inexpensive...And that's with 10 employees on the showroom floor...lol...

Internet will be a perfect way to use them....you can call for advice too.

Good luck Kalos
In honor of RebNavy...RIP buddy. You made me smile. :)

Postby rebnavy1862 » Fri Apr 07, 2017 4:00 pm
Driven, are you sure you are from Kalifornia? You make a lot of sense.
Reb"Then call us Rebels if you will, we glory in the name, for bending under unjust laws and swearing faith to an unjust cause, we count as greater shame". Richmond Daily Dispatch May 12 1862
Semper Fi, Sic Semper Tyrannis, Remember The Alamo, and Aide'toi et Dieu T'aidera!
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Re: AR Upgrades Question

Postby Dirk Williams » Sun Jul 23, 2017 4:46 pm

Not knocking anybodies build, buy Colt, and never look back. Colt IS the rifle all these aftermarket dealers are wanting to be. Purchase a set of Crane gas rings, and an extra bolt, your done, good for 10.000 rounds minimum.

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Re: AR Upgrades Question

Postby NJMike » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:06 am

Congrats on your two M&P 15s. I assume you have two Sport models, based on the cost? Are they Gen 1, or Gen 2 with the dust cover or forward assist?

Before continuing, I want to say I'm far from a firearms expert, and only offering an opinion. There are many experts on this forum with vast amounts of experience on the intricacies and nuances to fully kit out your rifles. They have plenty of range time and/or can speak well to their personal experiences.

I assume having spare parts, say a lower and upper parts kits is first priority.


I'm going to supply my simple perspective, fwiw, on priorities. I'm also budget conscious. Depending on the item, I won't spend a whole lot on upgrades or spare piece parts. If you have the potential to lose your primary, a subset of parts aren't the whole. If the desire is to have nearly the parts to assemble another rifle, then I'd suggest already having a backup rifle. Being the M&P cost you $500, when talking uppers, lowers, trigger upgrades, charging handles, BCG, etc. I'd personally just add a spare M&P, or suggest saving a bit more money to get something with extra features, and keep the original M&P as your backup. All things break eventually, even a high end product. A whole spare/backup can be used out of the box when needed, with no extra time spent to diagnose and rebuild. After having a backup, then spare parts. Just my opinion.

On AR upgrades, one has to consider their own unique situation, use scenarios, and personal proclivities in such things. Beyond a stock setup one could be a minimalist (e.g.- MBUS flip sights, red dot, sling, fold up bipod) or spend hundreds on a high-end scope, and many other customs. On high end upgrades, from a defense standpoint, night vision could be a better choice over getting a superb rifle, or working to make something better out of something basic. All depending on what you see yourself doing of course.
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Re: AR Upgrades Question

Postby handyman777 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:30 am

The one thing to consider would be extra mags, besides your spare parts.
If anyone recalls the cost of a 30RD mag a few years ago with the big scare that was placed on us, I remember the lines at the gun shop.
Big Gov. changes all the time, buy now while you can and its cheap.
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Re: AR Upgrades Question

Postby MrDanB » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:36 pm

It's such a personal thing to put mods on a rifle. I say this because one person may want to accurize while another may want sheer capacity and yet another may want an optic that brings the next county over into view. If it were my M&P, I would probably buy the spare parts kits, bulk up on magazines, then optic (in that order). After that, you may consider an accurate barrel (Wylde?), trigger upgrade (Timney or Geissele (sp?) and ambidextrous charging handle, fancy bolt etc etc. There's almost no limit to what you could change on an AR.
I have an older Colt HB Sporter I picked up many years ago. I have yet to have a single problem with it. I have purchased an accurized Colt a year ago, and that rifle is as good to shoot as my older Colt. Best thing to do is go to AR15.com and start reading up on what others have done to their rifles and their rationale behind their decisions. If you can learn from others, you will be money and experience ahead! Enjoy it, take care of it and be safe!
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