A while ago, one of our readers wrote in and asked for advice for a good SHTF shotgun. I helped him out with the knowledge I had, and I guess it was OK, because he wrote back on a slightly different topic. He asked,

Dear SHTFblog,
You guys gave me great shotgun advice reciently. I’m coming to you again for your thoughts on ARs.

I’m a gun novice. I’ve been looking into purchasing my first AR15. I’m trying to keep the price at $1000 or less. I do want a forward assist. I’m not planning on putting optics on this rifle so I’m looking for good iron sights. I like the maneuverability of the 16″ barrel models.

Aside from that, I really don’t know what I’m looking for. It seems I can find negative press about every model if I look hard enough. 

Can you make some recommendations on manufacturers? Can I get a quality product at the $1000 price point? I’d rather spend a little more if necessary to get a better product. I don’t want to spend 900 only to find out a could have gotten a better option for 1300. I only want to make this purchase once. I’m looking for a product I will own for a lifetime and will it to family.

 

AR advice, eh? *cracks knuckles* I’ll see what I can do.

WHY the AR-15?

I know many of our readers scoff at this plastic and aluminum wonder that has taken over our media and society in the firearms world. But like it or not, you have to face the facts: it’s here to stay, and it’s only becoming more popular as the days roll on. There are literally hundreds of companies making ARs and probably thousands of companies making parts for ARs. Go to www.brownells.com and type in the search field “AR15” and watch what comes up. The “Mattel Toy” of the Vietnam era has had 40 years of evolution and perfection through combat service, and it has become a serious tool that many rely upon for their SHTF needs. It is reliable, extremely accurate (especially compared to runners-up like the AK variants and the Ruger Mini-14), lightweight, compact. The 5.56mm/.223 round it is chambered in leaves something to be desired in the whollop department, and lack of long-range stability with the more common 55/62 grain military loads makes it an under-200 yard weapon under the best of circumstances. But for those who stay within the confines of the envelope the AR-15 works in, it is an incredible workhorse piece of gear.

 

As the most popular rifle in the US right now, by a long shot (nyuk nyuk) the AR has another thing going for it in a post-SHTF/TEOTWAWKI scenario: sheer numbers. Most, if not all, modern AR-15s are built to standard military specifications (or “mil-spec” as you’ll see it abbreviated to), and as such, parts from one (say the one in your hand) will fit another (a battlefield pick-up, for example) with little fuss. Magazines are interchangeable, triggers, bolt carrier groups (BCGs) pistol grips, springs, detents….you get the picture. So what I’m trying to say is that if you gear up with a SHTF AR-15, chances are somebody close by will too. And so will the local PD. And so will the National Guard armory. Spare parts, ammo, and mags will be easier to find in an “oh-shit-I’m-the-only-one-left” scenario for an AR-15 than any other long gun make out there except maybe the Remington 870. And when you’re using a detachable-magazine-fed firearm for a SHTF gun, you want to make sure those magazines are going to be available so your weapon keeps running.

 

Getting to the point…

 

Okay, so the specifications desired for the reader are:

-16″ barrel for mobility (also the way to go if you don’t want to fill out extra preying-eyes paperwork for an SBR (Short-Barreled Rifle)

-Iron Sights, probably no optics

-$1000 or less for a quality, long-term investment

 

Well, No sweat. Now that the post Sandy-Hook retardedness has died down somewhat (though who knows how long that will last), high-quality AR-15s can be had for less than a grand. I’m going to recommend one model in particular, because I’ve had personal experience with the firearms and the manufacturer, and can’t plug them enough.

 

If I had those same criteria, I would go buy a Windham Weaponry MPC A4. Here’s a picture!

02_ww_mpc_a4

 

It fits all your criteria (here is the Cabela’s page, where it’s on sale for $899), and has a few key points I like in specific:

-Fixed A-frame tower front sight – Extremely tough, protected. When I got my personal W-W upper, I got it with a railed gas block instead of a tower front sight. Now I wish I hadn’t. I like the simplicity and ruggedness of the fixed, all-metal front sight….especially if no optics are run.

-Folding metal rear sight – yeah, I know what I said about the front sight above, but I prefer flip-down rear sights (the Diamondhead ones that come on the W-W guns are pretty darned good) JUST IN CASE I get a good deal on an optic. Why limit yourself? The standard “carrying handle” A2-stylefixed rear sights are awesome and strong, but THEY SUCK to mount optics to. That’s why pretty much every new AR you see these days offers a removeable carrying handle rear sight as an option or add-on. But trust me, get flip-down rears if you have ANY thoughts about optics down the road.

-6-position collapsible mil-spec tube stock – with ARs, the rear buffer tube (that the stock sits on) is made in two different external diameters: commercial and mil-spec. Commercial is the smaller of the two, if I recall, and it is being phased out to standardize on mil-spec. However, you DO run across commercial-tubed guns occasionally, and if you want to upgrade the rear stock to something like a Magpul ACS (my personal favorite) it’ll be easier to find Mil-Spec stuff. Also, the collapsible stock is great if you’re wearing body armor or a backpack…you can shorten it up to make up the difference in length.

 

My personal AR has a Windham Weaponry upper, and it’s aces. I can shoot 4″ groups benched with a 3MOA red dot at 150 yards. (not anything special with a standard crosshair scope, but where the red dot covers MORE than the group size at that distance, it’s pretty good.). I’ve toured Windham Weaponry’s facility (where I took my armorer’s course with Academi/Blackwater) and their attention to detail floored me. Every SINGLE PART is inspected three times before installation: upon receipt from vendor/manufacturers, before it gets sent out for any modifying/finishing (like having the barrels drilled and rifling cut, or anodized finish applied) and then just before the gun is built. If there is the TINIEST flaw, the part is junked. So you can be assured that W-W has the highest standards on a gun you buy.

 

So there you go, my personal recommendation for your question. There are personal choices (like 1:9 rifling twist compared to 1:7…but that depends on what ammo you’ll be running) that you can iron out, and there are myriad options you can run for accessories. There are other manufacturers out there that will hit your price point (Smith and Wesson, Stag Arms, etc.) but I’ve had personal, excellent experience with Windham Weaponry so I can say you’ll be pleased with confidence.

 

Okay, all you other AR gunners (I know you’re out there!) What would you recommend to help this reader out? Let’s hear ’em!

 

Stay safe!

TRW

31 comments… add one
  • Road Warrior April 23, 2014, 7:27 am

    Also, use any money you save from your budget to stock up on Magpul PMAGs (check out the torture test I did on one: https://www.shtfblog.com/severe-gear-test-magpul-pmag/ ) and spare expendable parts, like trigger/hammer springs, extractors, extractor springs, trigger/hammer pins (they get lost easily! Ask me how I know!), detents, etc. A spare Lower Parts Kit (without the pistol grip, buffer tube, etc) is cheap and should be on hand. Also, AR’s are VERY simple to work on, if you have a bit of mechanical ability. Get a manual or take an armorer’s course…it’ll be money well spent if you ever have to work on your new AR. Good luck!

    Reply
  • Ray April 23, 2014, 10:15 am

    Well…. Buy ANYTHING not AR if you plan to stake your life on it. The only reason this “weapon” has remained in service is because the former US Military officers that run the company’s that make them ; pay MASSIVE kickbacks to congress to keep the M-16/ M-4 in full production. The US Army Rangers , Airborne , USASF , and SEALs have been trying to get rid of the Stoner(M-16/ M-4 /AR -15/ AR-10) for 35 years. WHY? Because it works on the range and FAILS UTTERLY in combat. If you stake your life on the AR platform it WILL fail when you need it the most.
    OH.. And R.W. Why exactly would I want a “battle field pickup” of a weapon that just double fed, had the gas tube blow out , or otherwise hopelessly failed and got its owner killed? AND WHY WOULD I BUY ONE? When for the same or a little more money we can buy a weapon with a better max range , better reliability , better “knock down” and a service life longer than a butterfly? (I consider 5000 rounds between parts failure to be a minimum for a survival / SHTF weapon and NO AR ON EARTH- EVER even gets close to that) The SKS(unmodified) and AK are both far and away better SHTF weapons than the AR-15 . Both being flawlessly reliable in the field , simple to operate and maintain with minimum training and accurate and powerful enough to kill a man or animal anywhere within there 400 yard effective range. I know that “everybody” loves the “range Barbie” , but no matter how many “toys” you hang off it , or how many cosmetic changes you make , it is still the same POS it was in 1965- and 1975 and 1985 and 1995 ,and 2005, BECAUSE IT IS THE SAME WEAPON, It is a black hole surrounded by alloy and plastic into witch you pour money. Can you tell I hate AR-15’s ? This is now quite possibly the least common rifle in eastern Kentucky , Everybody rushed out and bought one after the “ban” expired, and sold them off shortly after. Hillbillies wont carry weapons that won’t go “bang” every time.

    Reply
    • Road Warrior April 24, 2014, 5:23 am

      Hey Ray…last I checked, “broken gun” is only one of many reasons a gun could be dropped on a battlefield. ;) I’ve seen TONS of M44 Moisin-Nagants that were literal “battlefield pickups” from WW2 and they still worked just fine!

      I know, through gun shops I’ve worked at, to training classes I’ve taken, and networking, many people who served in our armed forces, LE, and private security who swear by the M4/M16 system, and run THOUSANDS of rounds through theirs yearly with no issues. My personal ARs have given flawless service, except when I loaded Hornady V-MAX bullets which had a longer ogive and consequently got stuck in the throat before the gun could go fully into battery. I fully believe that the modern, evolved AR-15, WHEN USED WITHIN ITS ENVELOPE and kept reasonably maintained, is a reliable and useful firearm, and I prefer it over the AK and SKS, even for a SHTF gun. But that’s just me. My AR with two loaded 30-round mags still weighs less than an empty M1A.

      Reply
      • Ray April 24, 2014, 4:28 pm

        There is no such thing as a “modern evolved AR-15” every change made to the Stoner after 1967 has been cosmetic. Combat rifles and survival rifles don’t ride around on padded racks in patrol cars. They don’t get detail cleaned at the end of a sunny day on the range. They don’t get loving care from master armorers. They get dropped in the mud and rinsed out with pond water. They get “cleaned” with diesel and lubed with used crank case oil & bearing grease. When the SHTF almost no one will have a case of lint free patches & pipe cleaners in their rucks and they won’t have the gallon of CLP needed for the 3 times a day cleaning mandated in the field.(or the pounds of replacement parts the stoner seems to need on a weekly basis) I learned to hate the M-16a1 , M-16a2 and CAR-15(we still had those crapola POS’s in the armory as late as ’79) in the Army. But then that was about the same time the “cut ‘er down ” fad started with the SF guys, who then couldn’t understand why the cut down M-60’s wouldn’t work and started screaming THEY were a POS. Go figger.

        Reply
        • Road Warrior April 25, 2014, 5:14 am

          …and here I thought that the M4 feed ramps and change from DGI to gas piston systems were evolutions. Silly me.

          Cut down guns? I’d like a Colt Monitor please!!! :D

          Reply
          • Ray April 25, 2014, 11:50 am

            The “gas piston” and “M-4feed ramp” were not improvements or “evolutions” .They are gimics that do however, distract form the real flaw in the AR system. The bolt , bolt carrier , extractor and ejector system copied from the combat failed Johnson Rifle . A system that dose not work and cannot be made to work reliably under field conditions. That’s why the USMC dumped it(the Johnson) in 1942 and why they have tried to dump or “improve” the Stoner since 1967 (every effort a failed effort thanks to the Congress and democrats who reap the lions share of kickbacks from Colt… and always have)—— The Colt Monitor was such a fiasco for Colt and the FBI that they both quietly dumped the idea(Hoover HATED bad press) shortly after it got started.( it went–Bang -Bang -JAM)(the reason for the compensator on the 16 inch tube was to try and create the gas pressure to get the bolt to cycle properly . Colt found that 20 inches was about as short as the BAR could get and still cycle properly even with a compensator.(the interwar “Cavalry” BAR– it never worked well ether) Add to that that BAR Mag’s SUCK and you could understand the need for all the gas in an already flawed gas system that you can get)IMO this was one of the main reasons the whole “shorty” MG Idea got dumped by the Government/military until after The Vietnam War. Also——- IMO if your best trigger pullers(SOF -USMC) think that a weapon(the Stoner) is crap…….maybe it is.

  • Roseman April 23, 2014, 11:21 am

    I have no recommendation for you as I am not a m16 fan.
    I was in basic in the mid sixties and we trained on both the m14 and m16. The majority of failures during my time there were experienced by the m16 and my accuracy with the 14 was far superior. Much of the poor shooting I acknowledge was operator error as I was not a good shot. The experience turned me off to the 16 and I have never had one in my safe.
    I’m sure they are more reliable now but I am also sure that I would be able to shoot better groups with the 14 and of course the caliber is far superior.
    I am also a Mossberg 500 fan because the average person can fix or replace almost anything on that model, not so with the 870.

    Reply
    • Road Warrior April 24, 2014, 5:32 am

      I’ve found that 870s are a bit easier to work on, but that’s just my opinion. The trigger groups on either suck. But the little spring and detent under the safety of a Mossberg 500 kills me…I had so many problems losing those I just ordered a 12-pack from Brownells. :)

      Reply
      • Roseman April 24, 2014, 8:10 am

        I used the term ‘average person’ in my comment. Your experience and skill level ranks you high above that ‘person’.

        Reply
  • smokechecktim April 23, 2014, 12:01 pm

    AR’s and the many variations are precision weapons……they will jam precisely when you need them most. The most recent range tests (that the army tried desperately to suppress) fired 20,000 rounds through various rifles and carbines. The M16/M4 jammed twice as much as the next rifle. If I recall the XM6 came in first. Plus the .223 round has absolutely no ability to penetrate anything….ask the troops in the stan or iraq! A friend has a ruger gunsite scout rifle. Accurate, lightweight, Chambered in .308 with a 16″ barrel its a great little carbine if that’s what you are looking for. I dont always agree with Ray….but this time he spot on.

    Reply
    • Steve suffering in NJ April 23, 2014, 9:05 pm

      Smoke,
      Had my eye on one of those Rugers for a while. How’s the iron sights on that?

      Thanks

      Reply
      • smokechecktim April 23, 2014, 10:17 pm

        ghost ring with a mini 14 style front sight. my friends carbine uses what is called a long relief scope…takes a little getting used to. If you’ve used a ghost ring before you can get good groups at 100 yards easily

        Reply
        • Steve suffering in NJ April 24, 2014, 8:15 am

          Cool thanks !!

          Reply
  • sput April 23, 2014, 12:28 pm

    Count me as another one who shuns the AR. I’ll be running 7.62 Nato. I do agree the SKS is a good choice for a beginner to the self-loading world.

    Reply
  • Jarhead Survivor April 23, 2014, 4:12 pm

    Wow! All this hate for 16! In the time I used it in the service I only had problems with it once. I did four years active duty and 8 years reserve time and the one time I had problems with it was during an NCO course I had to take. The one they issued me was broken and would only fire a single shot before jamming. I tried to turn it in to the armorer and he basically told me to live with it. We were only there for a few weeks and at that point we were more into Land Nav than shooting. Other than that one bad experience I always had good luck with it.

    Then again, I was very meticulous about keeping my weapon clean too and I’m sure that helped. I always shot good groups and found that it was reliable.

    I’ve shot the AK a few times and liked it as well, but the M16 is by far where I have the most experience shooting.

    Reply
    • Bear April 25, 2014, 3:36 pm

      You said it yourself, you had luck with it. When I’m at the range my SKS is very expensive to shoot compared to the AR guys. While its going bang as fast as I can pull the trigger the AR guys go bang once then stop for five minutes to clear a jam. Battle rifles shouldn’t do that I say. Just a range toy.

      Reply
  • Roseman April 23, 2014, 4:47 pm

    Sorry if I gave that impression but I have no hate for these rifles. Back then when I was training, problems with this relatively new rifle happened frequently. And since I couldn’t hit anything with it but was fairly proficient with the m14, it is logical to me anyway, to distance myself from that platform.

    Reply
    • Jarhead Survivor April 24, 2014, 10:27 am

      I heard the original M16 was prone to jamming and most people who went from the 14 to the 16 hated it. Understandable too. The version I worked with the most – the M16 A2 – didn’t jam as much and I didn’t know anything different.

      Reply
  • The Duck April 23, 2014, 4:58 pm

    I like the AR system, and had few problems

    Several years ago I decided to run one for an entire year without cleaning it, and only lubricating it through the ejection port, shot NRA competition, some tactical matches etc, well into 2000 rounds, and although it seemed to cycle slow in rapid fire, not a single hiccup.

    The only AR I’ve had problems with since 1994 was a factory Bushmaster, but that cleared up in the first 100 rounds

    Reply
  • Anonymous April 23, 2014, 5:03 pm

    Still take the AK , I have plenty of ammo , most US manufacturers now make the 7.62×39 , and they are as popular as an AR ……..Dirt and filth doesn’t bother them . I will take the Soviet doctrine of extreme reliability over I the American doctrine of surgical perfection at the expense of reliability . As a citizen , I most likely will find myself in a situation where weapon maintenance will have to wait , and still need the weapon to work when needed ………..the AK excels at this . If I have to resort to firearms …………..situations will not be good on any level . I also have a mini 30 , very fun to shoot and simple as dirt , but long term reliability is a big question mark , so again , my go to is the AK .

    Reply
  • Just Brad April 23, 2014, 5:48 pm

    I like my AR (bushmaster 2004) and have put several thousand rounds thru it with no issues. But as above, I keep it clean. I also have an AK, like it as well. I am in LE and every LE agency around me carries them and there is beaucoup ammo and mags around.

    Stay safe all

    Reply
  • R.C. April 23, 2014, 6:43 pm

    KY Gun Co pushed out this ad this morning for a S&W M&P15 http://www.kygunco.com/smith-and-wesson-mp15-sport-556mm-nato-30-round-37242 $593 which in my humble pie opinion is a screaming deal. I build my own ARs and it’s hard for me to get under $500 these days for all my parts.

    Reply
  • Harmony Hermit April 23, 2014, 7:51 pm

    My first experience with the AR was in Basic training in 1970. I was disappointed that they trained us with the M16, I wanted to shoot the M14 but the Army had just switched over to the M16.

    I did 7+ years active and several more reserves. Never had a problem with the AR.

    In basic I was on a range when I dropped my M16 in the sand on the firing line ejection port down. My Drill Sgt was all over me and the range Officer was berating me over the loud speaker about how Charlie was going to whack my ass because my weapon would not work and I would get my buddies all killed.

    I picked the weapon up brushed off the sand and began to fire the course of fire without a problem. Drill Sgt was really PO’ed but the RO shut up as I went through the firing sequence. After that I always trusted the M16. Use them all through my service and own two AR’s now.

    I would definitely trust my life to this weapon, it is reliable. All the hate makes me laugh, given my experience with the platform.

    Reply
    • Jarhead Survivor April 24, 2014, 10:25 am

      Harmony – I had a similar experience on the hand grenade range. I got so caught up in perfect form that when it was time to “throw grenade!” I only manged to throw it about 15 feet. The DI grabbed me and dropped us below the cement berm. When the grenade went off it showered us with rocks and sand. He proceeded to pummel me before letting me go (no big deal as I had on a flak jacket and helmet). When I got back in front the battalion the range safety office was berating me over the loud speakers and made me do push ups and mountain climbers in front of everybody for being such a dumbass. Ahh, the good old days. Haha!

      Reply
  • Mark April 23, 2014, 8:59 pm

    R.C. mentions the M&P. Looks like a great deal, I think I had even noticed that a few days ago in my looking around. I’m wondering though… does it have the milspec buffer assy you describe?
    I would guess it does but couldn’t find it mentioned in the specs.
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Road Warrior April 24, 2014, 7:33 am

      I’m pretty sure all new companies have mil-spec buffer tubes as standard…commercial tubes are being phased out quickly. Aftermarket companies like Magpul are even stopping manufacture of commercial-spec stuff. I think the only manufacturer still running commercial buffer tubes is Bushmaster.

      Reply
  • Steve suffering in NJ April 23, 2014, 9:09 pm

    R.W. Appreciate the input. Thanks to all for there comments as well.

    Reply
  • highdesertlivin April 25, 2014, 7:49 am

    Bang for the buck, I found ( and bought ) the M&P OR. Pick up a pair of sights and its good to go. Not all AR’s have chromed chambers. These do. Iff you have to fight a gorilla type engagement, w/no US type resupply structure. And live under a tarp/cave, then a Kalashnikov would be the better option.

    Reply
  • 3rdMan April 25, 2014, 7:17 pm

    A lot of haters. I have several ARs. Just bought another and it is a middy and I really like it. One of my other ARs I have fired well over 5000 rounds through it since about 2004 without any mechanical failures. I clean my ARs at between 500 and 1000 round. My AR will run all day long dirty as long as I give them a little lube now and than. It is a far cry from the original version.
    So my recommendation buy a quality brand name 16″ middy. You will love it. I also upgrade my trigger group to the Geissele SSA .
    For the hater whatever floats your boat!!

    Reply
  • Infantry Architect April 26, 2014, 3:30 am

    Where to Begin? I’m Army Infantry from ’83-95 mostly national Guard and Reservist time, Went to Airborne school, became a 2nd LT in 87.
    Lived through the transition form the M-16A1 to the A2/E2 upgrade.
    This A2 version was billed as an improvement in accuracy, lethality and reliability. In reliability the weapon was “improved” to be able to go 600 rounds w/o a stoppage or failure to fire FTF. Yes six hundred. not very many, which gives you and idea just how awful the early M16A1 was, especially our crappy worn out National Guard Ones. I really liked the A2, better sights, (thank the USMC for this one) and the 3 round burst feature, better barrel, better hand guards.
    Now jump forward to the current mil spec M-4. Since the M16A2 transitioned to the M4, the M4 has received over 50 DOD engineering improvements in the specification since 1991, and the mean number of rounds between stoppages or FTFs is specified to be 5400!!
    There is a web blog when a guy took a COLT brand M4 and went 6,000 rounds w/o cleaning it and not a single FTF.
    So that’s the good news,
    HOWEVER, on the civilian market, other than Colt, How do we know we are purchasing and M-4 with the correct DOD engineering specs to run 5,000+ rounds without a failure?
    THIS is my largest reason to recommend EITHER buy the COLT Brand M4, (whats the nomenclature, model 6930?)
    OR
    Buy another really high spec, AR like Daniel Defense, Rock River, I dunno, all over $1000
    OR
    reputable piston driven version, I like Sig 516 and Ruger SR556E (E for economy version) which goes on discount for right at $999.
    Because from this infantryman’s experience, the Direct Gas Impingement is the weak link in the reliability of the early spec M16/AR15 design. They have it improved for .gov spec circa 2012 and newer, but older spec, I just don’t know
    OR
    Also check out Sharps Reliabolt upgrade. This is a really great way to address the chamber fouling issue, and my own planned upgrade to my own low spec DPMS M4. (also fixed post type front sight, but i got the removable carry handle A2 sights)
    NEXT
    Lethality:
    Ballistics investigations into military shootings has revealed the following about the AR in 5.56.
    The round causes the most damage when it can “yaw and fragment” upon impact. That means when it hits the bullet flips and the jacket is shredded off and flies apart creating “multiple wound cavities” ( like a mini shotgun blast)
    HOWEVER
    they have Determined that “yaw and fragment” with 55-62 grain bullets exiting 1:9 twist barrels ONLY occurs when the round is traveling at over 2800FPS.
    Otherwise the bullet makes a neat small 22 hole through the intended target causing POSSIBLY too little damage to incapacitate the intended target.
    Why is this important?
    Because shorter barrels produce less velocity with the same cartridge than longer barrels. With the M16A2 20″ barrel we had 400 meters of range the 5.56 62gr was traveling at over 2,800FPS, However with the 14.5″ milspec M4, they are finding that 2800 is breached below in as short as 150- 180 meters.
    So, IMHO. That’s a very short range weapon to depend one life upon in any and every situation.
    Its a fast handling little gun, and my 107lb wife can handle it, you can carry lots of ammo and is super popular so parts abound.
    So I really WANT to love the M4,
    Also to make my dilemma worse I have had two AK-47 rifles FAIL on me, One new out of the box “IO” brand, would not fit mags in the well at all, returned it the very next day. and another bought used that within 100 rounds had the internal bolt frame rail folded over, and jammed the weapon hard. and that one is with the manufacturer for a warranty rebuild right now.
    SO much to my amazement An AK-47 can be crap too (who woulda thunk?) An arsenal AK is sure to be great, but at a $1000 and still has those crappy sights, yikes!
    So a 7.62NATO MBR is in the safe as well. its heavy, its REALLY loud, but if goes Whump! every time I pull the trigger.
    I think the 7.62×39 or 7.62×51 are the SHTF fan cartridges I prefer even though the M4 is much better now and 5.56 is more portable.
    Volume of fire is really important too, and other kick toward 5.56.
    Hope this helps more than confuses.
    FWIW, JW Rawles recommends the PTR91 as the survival rifle of choice.

    Reply
  • Chuck Findlay April 27, 2014, 3:24 am

    For a 5.56 / 223 rifle I like my HK-93, When I bought it I wanted the best, most reliable 5.56 rifle made. Going on 30-years of use and not a single mis-feed has in my mind proven it was the rifle to buy.

    I also like my leaver action Marlin 357-Mag. Either one of these rifles are great SHTF firearms. The 357-Mag is my preferred rifle as I have a handgun to match it and for any practical combat range it is a good choice.

    In fact I have been thinking of selling the HK to a friend if he comes up with enough $$$. I haven’t shot it in 2-years.

    I have a few other 223 firearms I plan on keeping, a bolt action Ruger and a Contender handgun, both of these are accurate and I enjoy hunting with them.

    But honestly any firearm that reliably feeds ammo and shoots a reasonable size group is a good SHTF gun. We all have our favorite caliber and firearm, but they all will work for survival use.

    All it really comes down to is to have a gun (any gun) and ammo.

    Reply

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