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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Alright here's the deal.

I want to get a new upper receiver that I can use with my current lower until eventually I get another lower.

Anyways, the plan is to end up with both a close in carbine and a medium-"long" range rifle.

Currently I have a S&W mp-15 moe that has been lightly customized. It's a very light handy carbine that is perfect for close in to medium range stuff. It's got a chrome bored and lined 16" m4 style barrel with a carbine gas system and M4 style FSP. I've got a Smith vortex FH on the end of it which i like but is maybe a bit long for this set up. I'd consider swapping that onto the new upper and putting an a2 back on the carbine.

the lower has a polished and light springed factory trigger that is good, or at least im used to how it works. i will hopefully get a better drop in one in the future along with the new lower which would go with the new build. Recently the stock MOE adjustable buttstock was changed out for an MOE fixed carbine stock. I also added a wedge to the rear of the receiver, these two things combined virtually eliminated play between the upper and lowers. Its got a spikes tac charging handle with a over-sized latch.

For sights it's usually got a combo of a troy folding rear sight, and a burris ar-332, with the option of putting on a Monstrum 2-7x32 for more precision. the 2-7 would go on the new "long range" upper.

So the plan is to get another complete upper that I can simply swap on and off my current lower depending on usage, one for short range/ GP and the other for longer range and more precision shooting.

I have decided to go with a barrel that is either 16" or 18". I'm actually starting to lean towards 16". I want this to be accurate but i dont plan on long range hunting with it so getting the most velocity out of it is not critical. and there isn't a large gain in vel from 16-18. I realize that velocity does help reduce wind drift and drop ans am still open to 18" Either way it has to be a mid length gas system and a 1/8 twist. my current barrel is a 1/9 twist. I dont feel that i need 1/7 but i guess if i found the right barrel and it was a 1/7 i could use it. I just dont plan on shooting 77 gr ammo.

The real question here is should I go with an HBAR or something like a medium weight "socom" style or even a lightweight contour. I dont want to spend a crap ton of money, like $300 is my budget. This wont be a high volume gun, it also wont be carried over long distances. I'm happy with the accuracy out of my m4 style barrel but want something thats alittle more dedicated to accuracy. I also want one that doesnt have a FSP, however this is purely due to looks.

This build is to be something like a RECCE or SPR type build; somewhere in between a long range target "sniper" setup and a close range CQB carbine.

Which barrel style would you chose? please lets try to keep this on topic, ei i dont need to hear about 20" bull barrels or 10" lightweight's! and no other calibers!

16"-18" mid length gas'd:

HBAR or
M4 contour

help me decide....

PS: same caliber, .223/5.56 so im looking at either 5.56 or .223 wylde barrels.

PPS: I think its evident that a medium profile would be the best however in my price range most of the barrels are either HBAR or m4 style.
 

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This is what I use, It's $69 over your budget but it's a great barrel.

https://www.bravocompanyusa.com/BCM...th-Gas-IONBOND-p/bcm-brl-ss410-16-8-ib-bk.htm


Its a BCM Stainless steel match barrel (ion bonded black) with a 1:8 twist rate. It uses a mid length gas system for soft shooting and it's a medium weight contour.

Not a big heavy bull barrel or still heavier HBAR but also not an M4/govt. profile barrel which has all the stupid cut outs for grenade launchers or whatever in all the wrong places for accuracy.

Its pretty light weight. Comparable in weight to a normal 16" carbine. Obviously the bipod and suppressor add some weight to it up front but I don't mind. If you wanted to forgo those parts you could have a very nice carry able AR15 platform but with a lot better performance accurcacy/precision wise if you want to go take out a coyote or even something smaller at a pretty decent short to mid range distance.

It has a free floated MLOK handguard.


5.56 chambering. I shoot Black Hills 77 grain OTM Match rounds through it out to about 500 yards using a 1-8x first focal plane MRAD reticle optic with very good results.
RECCE 2.jpg
 

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What if you could only choose M4 or Hbar? is the extra weight worth it?
If it was between M4 and HBAR I would go with stainless HBAR though for what you want to use it for.



The BCM medium stainless barrel was designed specifically to be a highly accurate AND durable RECCE style rifle/carbine barrel. They have seen a lot of usage over the past few years and you will find very few and far between if any negative things about them.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If it was between M4 and HBAR I would go with stainless HBAR though for what you want to use it for.



The BCM medium stainless barrel was designed specifically to be a highly accurate AND durable RECCE style rifle/carbine barrel. They have seen a lot of usage over the past few years and you will find very few and far between if any negative things about them.
thanks for the input ;)
 

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Dang TACAV, you beat me to it. I have a BCM upper on my longer range gun and it is a tack driver. If I was going to go with a 16 inch barrel, that's the exact one I'd choose. I can't say enough good stuff about every BCM product I've used. Excellent stuff.
 

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I just bought a new STAG upper minus BCG and charge handle delivered to my house for 309$
it's not what you want.[it's their varmint flat top upper with free float hand guard and 24" heavy barrel in 1-8 twist]

but they did have what you do want for less money.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I have been.

This build will happen in about 3-4 months. Right now im just trying to hammer down exactly what im looking for.

right now im leaning towards a 18" mid length 1/8 twist heavy barrel with a 13-15" FF mlok.

i think that would most nicely compliment the current 16" carbine.
 

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I built one like what you are looking for. The barrel is 18", rifle length gas system, .223 Wylde chamber and 1:8" twist. I have a 12" aluminum M-lock free float Hand guard and a standard A2 birdcage flash hider. It shoots really well with the 77gr Sierra Match King, 75gr Amax, and 69gr Sierra Match King.
I have been thinking about dropping the handguard for something lighter but not sure exactly what that would be. Honestly i'm not shooting ARs that much right now so only the Carbine gets shot on a regular basis.
 

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mine get worked out each spring.
I just bought that heavy varmint upper and put it on my Armalite NM lower as a second varmint Rig.
that gives me a nearly matched pair of rifles with similar scopes and triggers etc.
 

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Dang TACAV, you beat me to it. I have a BCM upper on my longer range gun and it is a tack driver. If I was going to go with a 16 inch barrel, that's the exact one I'd choose. I can't say enough good stuff about every BCM product I've used. Excellent stuff.

yea me too. I have a lot of their stuff and nothing but good things to say about them.

I really do believe they are the best overall bang for your buck for a serious hard use "go to war" (or work) gun for when you want something extremely well built and reliable and arguably giving you the same results without blowing the bank like with a Daniel Defense or Noveske or LMT build.

I also have DD and Noveske stuff and they are top notch and DD like LMT makes a lot of stuff for the military but all my BCM stuff is every bit as reliable and well built at a lower price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Im starting to lean toward a heavy 16" upper. I go back and forth between 18, 20 and 16".

I already have a 16" lightweight upper.. so even going to a heavy 16" is going to be more accurate. but part of me wants to go full on 20" hbar. 18" seems like the sweet spot but they are harder to find and or more expensive.

One major part of this new upper idea is that i want an upper without the FSP, I want one with a longer free floated Handguard and no FSP. so even a 16" hbar with a nice 15" slim hand guard will accomplish what i want mostly. the extra barrel length would be nice though to get the most out of the .223/5.56.
 
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