DSA FAL & Savage or LaRue OBR?
My wife and I are in the market to buy some guns in order to defend our future Permaculture homestead out in the country. (However, we currently live in the city.) While we've already made our various handgun and shot gun selections, we now have to decide on a Battle Rifle for SHTF.
So, should we get one powerful Battle Rifle that'd be good at rapid fire (DSA FAL, or FN SCAR H17, or Springfield M1A, or PTR91) and
one highly accurate hunting rifle that be good for long range (Savage?),
just get one super accurate, "battle" rifle and be done with it (LaRue OBR 7.62, or FNH FNAR, or Armalite AR104).
The former option would at least give us two guns, instead of one.
Regardless, we want good quality - something very reliable and durable, because we're relatively new to the world of guns. Also, I'm 5'6", but very strong, so please consider my size.
Here's my vote;
Main battle rifle. My preference is the PTR, but I had an M1a and liked it pretty good as well.
If you're looking for an FAL, I'd skip DSA for awhile until they get their stuff back together. All kinds of issues, recalls, and letters lately poping up on FAL forums.
As far as "super accurate"... I think you'd be surprised at what an M1a or PTR is actually capable of...
A solid battle rifle fills every need imho. No need for much of anything else...
Ask yourself these questions;
*How much (paper and theoretical) accuracy do I really need? Under duress, you can have the most expensive, most accurate rifle in the world and miss. 4-5 moa is acceptable for a military rifle, most new battle rifles shoot between 2-4 moa.
*How much more defensive firepower can a battle rifle unleash compared to a bolt action rifle?
*How much more valuable is a 20 round magazine, and semi auto? Assuming most "engagements" are well below 300 yards, at what point would having a super accurate bolt action or $3,000 semi, outweigh the usefulness of a rugged battle rifle?
The easiest part is picking a rifle. The hardest part is learning to use it. What good is a 1/2 moa bolt action, if you can only shoot 4" groups? What good is a $1,200 or $3,000 battle rifle, if you can't afford to train with it?
What good is ANYTHING, without proper training and familiarity?
Just because a Larue OBR is capable of sub-moa, that doesn't mean you are!
Practice, practice, practice...
Money doesn't buy marksmanship.
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They can get you sorted on the FAL a lot better than I can, but just in the last few months there's been all kinds of posts about DSA issues... Bolts chipping, safety recall of lowers, and q/c issues with the receivers...
This is the last issue I know of;
*Dirt Cheap magazines
*Lots of parts and accessories available
*Can be "modular" and "tactical"
*Will eat steel cased ammo without a hickup
*No bolt hold open
*Ergonomics not for everyone
*A little rough on brass
*Standard versions will not feed tar sealed ammunition
As you can see, it's not without fault, but I believe it to be one of the top tier main battle rifles available, and it's more affordable than FALs and M1As, especially when factoring in much needed magazines. I've owned both the M1a and PTR, and I honestly think people are splitting hairs when it comes to the well made mbrs, and it's really personal preference...
Here's some links of interest;
Mizer's 3,000 round reliability test (WIP, Mid-Page 4 starts my 91K entry)
CZ's Accuracy Challenge
Recent PTR91 G.I. Thread
What is cheap, and where do I go to get them? Are magazine and follower rebuild kits available, and again, where? On your advice I went and looked at them at a big gun shop in town. I'm buying two...
I had to sell my CZ505 Gibbs to fund these, so you better be right.
I have owned a Belgian FN FAL 50.00 a long time now and I have shot numerous versions of the M1A. Both are pretty good, though the FAL has it's legendary ergonomics and fast handling. M1A is well know for it's accuracy and reliability.
I have a few rounds through the Larue OBR and they are absolutely first rate... like everything else they make. My only issue is that they cost a good bit more than what you can build other AR platforms up for. You are looking at 5k to put one together with good optics, mags and accessories.
The FNAR has a long way to go before proving itself.
Considering your size, you may want to look at the FN SCAR 17. It's the lightest battle rifle I have ever handled. The price will drop eventually. I really like the 556 version. The 17 has been in the hands of SOCOM members for a couple years now and they are keeping it for a while.
With those options, one true MBR and one bolt action (same caliber!) is better for a married couple IMO:
1. Your wife could carry the lighter bolt rifle.
2. Two people shooting is better than one.
3. A "super accurate" MBR is going to be EXPENSIVE.
4. Many MBR's and most bolt guns are already more accurate than 95% of users.
5. Backup weapons.
6. Two shooters, but only one rifle???
After trying several different semi auto 7.62x51mm rifles out, most of my clan uses the M14/M1A, as they have alot to offer for the end user.
1. Plenty of different options, mods, and configurations that allow the most versatility for various different uses, and/or folks with different preferences. A big advantage here is in the different types of stock designs that one can use with this design. The traditional type of stock, or various other types of pistol grip stocks. LOP can be taylor made for any specific end user, and utilizing either type of stock. From my experience, this goes along way towards precise bullet placement upon firing it, either for defensive use, or hunting, and at various ranges. My favorite stock is the plain jane GI synthetic, but my brother loves his SAI Socom16 in a Sage stock for example.
another thing that I really like about the M14 types is that they are very easy to use with either hand. I'm a lefty by nature, and when I shoot right handed, prefer a little mod from SEI called an extended bolt stop. Shooting southpaw= no mods required for me at least.
Optics mounting has plenty of options nowadays regarding the M14/M1A as well, and is also very easy for one to do.. (Either over the receiver, or mounted forward of the receiver depending on what one likes.)
Note: I am likin the 18ish in bbls personally......
2. All of the rifle types that you are looking at vary in their manual of arms, and is another point to consider before purchase. Examples include the location of the charging handle, safety, and over all balance of a specific type in comparison to another. This is what led me to the M14/M1A, as it's design lends itself well for a point and shoot type of rifle. Others may be more comfortable with another design.
3. Iron sights are another big reason as to why I prefer the M14/M1A over the others. Fully adjustable, and precise with either 1MOA adjustments, or 1/4 MOA adjustments depending on what one likes. Increments are in meters when using the M14 rear sight assembly, or in yds if one likes....provided that the M1 Garand windage/elevation knobs (or complete rear sight assembly) is preferred, as they will interchange....along with a few other M1 parts.
4. Reliability/Durability: Any of them should be good to go in this department, provided that they are well built and with quality parts/magazines.
Note: DSA Arms has put out a recall notice regarding some of their FAL types. I ran across it on thier website, and posted it in this section just in case a fellow member had one, and didn't know about it. I haven't researched it further, but am just stating my findings.
5. Accuracy: Most of this is up to the shooter, but when conducting my own little evaluations of the M14/FAL/HK91..... The M14 provided for better precision using various different loads of milsurp,match, and hunting ammunition. As for practical shooting in the field, refer to #1 above.
6. Cons: Other than initial costs of the rifle, I really dont have any.
Note: The M1A/M14 seem to hold thier re-sale value well, so if I ever stumble into something else that I prefer, mine cost more now than at the time of purchase regardless.
7. Links for additional info are as follows......( IE...stuff other than SAI that might be of interest)
Good quality M14 mags =
Note: If I was on a tight budget, I would go with the PTR.
Good luck with your decision sir.
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