Best, inexpensive AR-15 for Home Defense

amtilton17amtilton17 MemberPosts: 54 Member
Hey guys,

What are some of the best, inexpensive AR-15s that would be reliable for home defense? I am hoping to stay around the $600 mark if possible. Not really sure where AR-15s usually run. Thanks.

Comments

  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 13,528 Senior Member
    Two I am familiar with are:

    DPMS Sportical...Very basic, functional AR carbine, no forward assist, no dust cover...
    DPMS Oracle...Basic AR carbine with FA and dust cover...

    In either case you will been to add the price of either iron sights or optics....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • JeeperJeeper Senior Member Posts: 2,875 Senior Member
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  • SirGeorgeKillianSirGeorgeKillian Senior Member Posts: 5,458 Senior Member
    Here is my DPMS Sportical. I have about 1200 invested in it so far, and that includes a .22 conversion kit. I am very happy with it, and it's simplicity. I don't have a use for a forward assist or a dust cover. I would highly recommend one!
    Picture093.jpg
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  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 9,653 Senior Member
    I am very happy with it, and it's simplicity. I don't have a use for a forward assist or a dust cover. I would highly recommend one!

    I looked hard at those, when I'd see them advertised for under $700, but I cannot bring myself to do the research on them. All the AR guys I know act bored when I ask about them, and switch the topic to buying the individual components and assembling a 'better' one for the same price. I'm not really interested in doing that. I'd just like to have a short, semi-auto .223 that I could hit the sweet spot on a feral hog, out to maybe 150-200 yards...and mostly just play with. If I liked it enough, then, I might build one to replace it (probably not).
  • ken55ken55 Senior Member Posts: 776 Senior Member
    I have a S&W MP15 Sport that is about as simple as you can get. I won it in a drawing but I think they can be found for around your $600 budget. It comes with a good removable rear sight on a flat top and has no forward assist or dust cover. It's very light compared to my other ARs and is more than accurate enough for home defense or even hog or coyote hunting. I had no trouble keeping everything in the 3" circle at 100 yards with the irons, even with my poor eyesight.

    Here's a link to the S&W ad. Don't be put off by the MSRP - they go for a lot less than that around here.

    http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product4_750001_750051_786006_-1_757785_757784_757784_ProductDisplayErrorView_Y
  • scarfacescarface Member Posts: 263 Member
    I have heard good things regarding Spikes Tactical products and Palmetto State Armory AR-15s. They look to be quality firearms at good prices. I am not sure if they fit into the $600-$700 dollar category, but they may be an option.

    I do have first hand experience with the Smith and Wesson AR's, and they are quality rifles. Good luck.
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,410 Senior Member
    bisley wrote: »
    I looked hard at those, when I'd see them advertised for under $700, but I cannot bring myself to do the research on them. All the AR guys I know act bored when I ask about them, and switch the topic to buying the individual components and assembling a 'better' one for the same price. I'm not really interested in doing that. I'd just like to have a short, semi-auto .223 that I could hit the sweet spot on a feral hog, out to maybe 150-200 yards...and mostly just play with. If I liked it enough, then, I might build one to replace it (probably not).

    Bis, you've summed up my EXACT feelings on ARs. I have said these same words myself. Too funny.:beer:
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 13,528 Senior Member
    bisley wrote: »
    All the AR guys I know act bored when I ask about them, and switch the topic to buying the individual components and assembling a 'better' one for the same price.

    As in all niches of firearms ownership...there are AR snobs...NOTHING is better than what they have, and no opinions count more than theirs.

    I have a friend who bought a Sportical as an entry-level AR....and between the two of us we have run that gun hard!...no problems with it other than the silly name..."Sportical."
    "I kicked him right in the Sporticals!!!"
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • avmechavmech Senior Member Posts: 838 Senior Member
    Stag is also a good one that is reasonably priced. Heck, Stag's mother company makes uppers and lowers for a bunch of other manufacturer's
    NRA Benefactor Member
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 9,653 Senior Member
    bobbyrlf3 wrote: »
    Bis, you've summed up my EXACT feelings on ARs. I have said these same words myself. Too funny.:beer:

    I'll buy one, if you will. Jayhawker says they are OK, and I can go with that. Bud's Gun Shop has them for $572 - that's with no tax and a $25 transfer fee for me. We can be the "Sportical Twins." :jester:
  • minnesotashooterminnesotashooter Senior Member Posts: 674 Senior Member
    Here is my DPMS Sportical. For what I do with it, plinking mostly, it has worked fine. It has never given me a problem. I am not an AR snob, so I am happy with this one. It has eaten any type of ammo I have fed it and just keeps on running. I added iron sights and a red dot. Should be fine for the zombie hoards when they come!
    2011-10-27_14-22-27_620.jpg
  • 1965Jeff1965Jeff Senior Member Posts: 1,540 Senior Member
    Hey! thats my zombie gun too! Are you ready for ... hey, is this Friday another world ender like last Friday? Seriously though I bought one of the DPMS sportical last spring and really enjoy shooting it.
  • amtilton17amtilton17 Member Posts: 54 Member
    sounds like most of you like the dpms sportical, but that i wlould probably be spending close to 1,000 after buying a scope and other stuff. is there any other inexpensive, semi auto rifle you all woul recommend or should i just stick with the ar-15?
  • bobbyrlf3bobbyrlf3 Senior Member Posts: 2,410 Senior Member
    bisley wrote: »
    I'll buy one, if you will. Jayhawker says they are OK, and I can go with that. Bud's Gun Shop has them for $572 - that's with no tax and a $25 transfer fee for me. We can be the "Sportical Twins." :jester:
    :rotflmao:

    Unfortunately for me, the shops here require that I pay sales tax as well as the transfer fee; tax rate is 10%, and the lowest transfer fee I've found is $60 at Cabela's. Maybe I can convince the Mrs. to be extra nice to me this Christmas :angel:
    Knowledge is essential to living freely and fully; understanding gives knowledge purpose and strength; wisdom is combining the two and applying them appropriately in words and actions.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 17,913 Senior Member
    amtilton17 wrote: »
    is there any other inexpensive, semi auto rifle you all woul recommend

    For the budget amount you've mentioned, you could buy TWO Mossberg 500's, one set up for buckshot, and the other for slugs, and have better home defense firepower than any EBR I can think of.
    Jerry
    Hide and wail in terror, Eloi- - - -We Morlocks are on the hunt!
    ASK-HOLE Someone who asks for advice and always does something opposite
  • minnesotashooterminnesotashooter Senior Member Posts: 674 Senior Member
    Teach wrote: »
    For the budget amount you've mentioned, you could buy TWO Mossberg 500's, one set up for buckshot, and the other for slugs, and have better home defense firepower than any EBR I can think of.
    Jerry

    If this rifle is going to only be for home defense then I am going to agree with Jerry and go buy a shotgun. You could buy a good shotgun and a bolt action rifle in .223(like a used Savage or Marlin) for about the same money as your AR15.
  • shotgunshooter3shotgunshooter3 Senior Member Posts: 5,258 Senior Member
    Teach wrote: »
    For the budget amount you've mentioned, you could buy TWO Mossberg 500's, one set up for buckshot, and the other for slugs, and have better home defense firepower than any EBR I can think of.
    Jerry

    That is an idea right there. My HD setup is a $140 Maverick 88 (economy version of the Mossberg 500) with 5 shots of 7.5 birdshot. The AR and Glock are backups if I get attacked by a Zombie Hoard.
    - I am a rifleman with a poorly chosen screen name. -
    "It's far easier to start out learning to be precise and then speeding up, than it is having never "mastered" the weapon, and trying to be precise." - Dan C
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 9,653 Senior Member
    bobbyrlf3 wrote: »
    :rotflmao:

    Unfortunately for me, the shops here require that I pay sales tax as well as the transfer fee; tax rate is 10%, and the lowest transfer fee I've found is $60 at Cabela's. Maybe I can convince the Mrs. to be extra nice to me this Christmas :angel:

    Well, since Mrs. Bisley just bought me a gun safe last week for anniversary, I guess I owe it to her to lay low for a brief period on gun expenditures...maybe a month.
  • drawlin2drawlin2 New Member Posts: 1 New Member
    I just bought a DPMS Sportical .223 Upper for my Spikes Tactical lower. I purchased a 4 rail hand guard for it, but when I went to install it it did not fit despite them being the same size. I noticed that my stock DPMS hand guard is tapered on both ends, unlike other AR-15 hand guards I have seen are only tapered on one end. I have not been able to find an aftermarket hand guard like yours that fits my Sportical. Any suggestions or brands I should look into? I noticed you had a 4 rail set up on your Sportical.
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 22,588 Senior Member
    drawlin2 wrote: »
    .
    Welcome aboard.
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  • TSchubTSchub Senior Member Posts: 780 Senior Member
    While I personally have nothing against AR's, I like Jerry's idea for HD.
  • jbp-ohiojbp-ohio Senior Member Posts: 8,451 Senior Member
    In Dunham's Sports black friday ad is a Bushmaster Optics Ready carbine. It's $749 and you get $100 back, so final price is $649....

    5%20e2s%20o.r.c.%20(optics%20ready%20carbine).jpg
    "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not." Thomas Jefferson
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 6,589 Senior Member
    I would at least insist on something with a chrome lined barrel for your purposes. A little more expensive, but longer lasting and far easier to clean.

    There are a couple of makers using polymer lowers (Plumb Crazy, I think) with polymer fire control components. This will drop your cost down, but you may be loosing some interchangeability with standard AR parts, and the jury is still out on longevity.

    I'll join the shotgun crowd for the purposes of home defense, but if your goal is a reliable semi auto rifle for not a lot of money, think AK-47.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 16,557 Senior Member
    You can buy a complete (minus lower) kit from Del-Ton for $465 and a stripped lower
    http://www.del-ton.com/AR_15_Rifle_Kits_20_s/58.htm

    And a stripped lower from Palmetto State Armory for $80 (Though you might be able to find one on sale for less elsewhere)
    http://www.palmettostatearmory.com/1560.php
    And can have a nice basic AR for well under your $600 budget (depending on your dealers transfer fee for the lower)
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • JayJay Senior Member Posts: 2,823 Senior Member
    knitepoet wrote: »
    You can buy a complete (minus lower) kit from Del-Ton for $465 and a stripped lower
    http://www.del-ton.com/AR_15_Rifle_Kits_20_s/58.htm

    And a stripped lower from Palmetto State Armory for $80 (Though you might be able to find one on sale for less elsewhere)
    http://www.palmettostatearmory.com/1560.php
    And can have a nice basic AR for well under your $600 budget (depending on your dealers transfer fee for the lower)

    :agree:

    I've built two carbines using Del-Ton kits. Both were upgraded and weren't the basic package, but the base price kit would do just fine. IMHO, I will not buy a Del-Ton kit without at least upgrading to the RRA NM trigger. It's hard to beat the price they give you on it with the kit.

    I would also have no problem buying a Sportical and looked at them before ordering the stuff to put mine together. But I decided I wanted a little more and probably would have spent as much buying a sportical and swapping parts.
  • NCFUBARNCFUBAR Senior Member Posts: 4,172 Senior Member
    knitepoet wrote: »
    You can buy a complete (minus lower) kit from Del-Ton for $465 and a stripped lower
    http://www.del-ton.com/AR_15_Rifle_Kits_20_s/58.htm

    And a stripped lower from Palmetto State Armory for $80 (Though you might be able to find one on sale for less elsewhere)
    http://www.palmettostatearmory.com/1560.php
    And can have a nice basic AR for well under your $600 budget (depending on your dealers transfer fee for the lower)

    Or if you just want to buy 1 Palmetto has the basic carbine on sale for $599 and it has a warranty from them.

    http://palmettostatearmory.com/8923.php
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  • rapier5316rapier5316 Member Posts: 312 Member
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  • glockman0422glockman0422 Member Posts: 216 Member
    If you can come up with about 800 i would suggest checking out Spikes Tactical. Its the only company that i know of that has all the basic features any AR rifle should have including chrome line bore, gas key etc. They really go above and beyond and it really shows in the attention to detail on all the components. Other companies should take notice, there is no need to charge a rediculous amount of money for options that should come standard on a rifle. They also have a lifetime warantee unlike other companies like Bushmaster, DPMS and others. IMHO i beleive that you cant beat the value considering the quality you get. I have the carbine lenght and it has been great. Very accurate and reliable. 1000 rounds thru it so far and not one single hiccup. I highly reccomend it. And if you want to upgrade it, you will have an awesome platform to start with. Check out their specs:

    http://www.spikestactical.com/new/z/st15-m4-le-carbine-p-387.html

    Here is a photo of mine with Magpul furniture:

    magpul003.jpg

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