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Ok, bear with me here. While I own a M&P-15 Sport II, I am not a AR kinda guy. Honestly, I don't really like the things. However, sitting here with my mind wandering in isolation boredom ( and I mean really bored as Hell!) Its occurred to me that if (really big IF) I were to get another AR style rifle, I wouldn't mind having one similar to the M-16A1 I used back in my Army days of the early 1970s.  I'm talking 20 " barrel, forged in carry handle, solid butt stock,  tri-angular handguards, pretty much G.I. semi-auto clone from days gone by. About the only thing I might want different would be the A2 style rear sight with easier to adjust knobs. But I'm not totally sold on that. 

Anyway, my googlefoo isn't the best and attempts to search mostly turns up millions of current style ARs with all the bells and whistles. Frankly, I don't feel like sorting through all that crap. So, does anybody know of a good company making a rifle like this at a reasonable price? Honestly, if its too expensive, I'll just forget it. This is just a random thought rolling around in my head and not something I'm seriously committed to. 

I'm sure if I looked enough I could find an older rifle from years ago in this configuration, but what price could I expect to pay? 

Anyway, like I said, just bored and spit ballin' here. Bear with an old man.  :shrug:

 

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16 minutes ago, Grayfox54 said:

Ok, bear with me here. While I own a M&P-15 Sport II, I am not a AR kinda guy. Honestly, I don't really like the things. However, sitting here with my mind wandering in isolation boredom ( and I mean really bored as Hell!) Its occurred to me that if (really big IF) I were to get another AR style rifle, I wouldn't mind having one similar to the M-16A1 I used back in my Army days of the early 1970s.  I'm talking 20 " barrel, forged in carry handle, solid butt stock,  tri-angular handguards, pretty much G.I. semi-auto clone from days gone by. About the only thing I might want different would be the A2 style rear sight with easier to adjust knobs. But I'm not totally sold on that. 

Anyway, my googlefoo isn't the best and attempts to search mostly turns up millions of current style ARs with all the bells and whistles. Frankly, I don't feel like sorting through all that crap. So, does anybody know of a good company making a rifle like this at a reasonable price? Honestly, if its too expensive, I'll just forget it. This is just a random thought rolling around in my head and not something I'm seriously committed to. 

I'm sure if I looked enough I could find an older rifle from years ago in this configuration, but what price could I expect to pay? 

Anyway, like I said, just bored and spit ballin' here. Bear with an old man.  :shrug:

 

Having been issued both A1 and A2 versions of the M16 in the Marine Corps, I would go to the A2 version because the rear sight is able to be adjusted by hand. With the A1 you have to use the tip of a bullet or some other similarly shaped tool.

https://palmettostatearmory.com/psa-20-classic-a2-rifle.html

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I am about like you. In 2012, I called Rock River and got them to build me two AR-15;s.  I got the fixed buttstock and the M2 fixed carry handle. I like the shorter 16 inch barrel but like the longer handguards better than the short carbine style. They suggested a mid length gas system and longer handguards. I rally like the look. It looks like a full size 20 inch, but they are a bit too heavy. I still have both of them unfired in the boxes. Back then I had an FFL and I think the cost was $775 each. You might check and see if they can put together what you want.

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The only real older rifle version all wear the pony, and anything pony is out of line with them stopping commercial civilian production. Even before that, SP1 Colts were on the way up with the interest in retro's. They are expensive at 1500 to 2000 for not so great ones, so likely preclude that route.

Good news is, like some have alluded to, just about everyone jumped into the retro market the last 2 to 3 years and makes their version. Question is really what is your limit, and how "close" to the real thing do you want it. The hanguards and fixed carry handle look, or era and model correct down to colors, correlated furnture, and/or markings.

For example, do you want the early 67 version with the 3 prong brush catcher and D (swivel) buttsock, or later birdcage fixed trapdoor. Many of the current market offerings are a mashup, if you care.

Most folks that just want the 10 feet away look really like the Brownells offering, with the most recent Colt branded retro (arguably the best correct replica) rollmarked Propery of US version that clocked in at 2500 retail. They were going on GB for 1500 last year because everyone thought they were overpriced, but now....yeah....its got a pony on it making it over the 2k mark.

Couple good reviews out there. The guy who worked for Colt did a comparo of the BRNM16A1 versus the Colt CRM16A1 and tried to make the Brownells offering look better while contradicting himself due to his disdain of Colt. So factor some of that.

Best bet for authenticy, may be to source a NOS  or lightly used genuine A1 upper and use a repro lower, like the Nodak Spud. That is what my retro is made up of and it looks pretty on point. If they had the Colt offering I would have gotten that, its like the real deal with out the go fast switch.

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8 minutes ago, Chucktshoes said:

Colt returned to the civilian market a month or two back. 

Yes, for 6920’s.  The chance of them making their $2,500 A1 retros again are about slim to none I imagine.

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5 minutes ago, Garufa said:

Yes, for 6920’s.  The chance of them making their $2,500 A1 retros again are about slim to none I imagine.

Fair point. 

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Yes sir, was aware and not surprised since that how I read their release back in September. I was referring to rifle supply and the general effect of killing secondary market parts supply driving current cost of that supply up for those looking to put one together or buy one. The small amount they recently released shouldn't have any material impact.

FWIW, their retro A1 was not actually put together by them, which may be one of the reason they were a bit nicer. It would be great if they fully licensed that vendor to make more to get the price realistic. Though the market for the full size rifle is more niche to have that happen. Unlike their M4A1 Socom which they could sell by the truckload even if its a subpar clone. If they were smart, since they have that line up and running, they'd start knocking more of those out since they are obviously chasing the panic dollars.

 

 

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The Brownell's rifle is pretty much what I'd want. But I'm just not sure I want to spend $1200 on what would be just be a nostalgic toy.   No way I'll spend $2500 on a pony. 

If I remember correctly, most of the rifles I was issued in the Army were made by General Motors. I don't think I ever had a Colt. These were also the rifles that turned me against the M-16 for 40 years. Good shooters when they worked. The problem was keeping those A1 POSs working. I've seen M-16A1s do some really weird malfunctions. Most unreliable firearm I've ever had. Not just mine, but many others as well. 

The only reason I own the S&W M&P 15 now is that at the time they were pushing the ban real hard again and I just thought "why the hell not?" Like I said, I'm not much of an AR guy anyway.

Again, I have no idea why this notion has struck me now. Maybe I've just been locked away from the world for too long. Gettin' bored and crazy.  IDK, maybe if I can stumble across the right rifle at the right price?  We'll see. 

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I think I may have found something. [url=https://www.windhamweaponry.com/firearms/rifles/223-556-caliber-rifle/a1-government/] WINDHAM WEAPONRY A1 GOVERNMENT[/url] Looks to be what I want and seems to sell in the $800-850 range. Some minor differences such as the barrel profile ain't quite right or the stock is a hair longer, but I'm not that nit picky. Of course, right now nobody has one in stock. :shrug: 

I really don't know one brand from another. What's good or what's bad. Anybody got any opinions of these? 

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Windham builds a solid rifle, one of the better price to quality ratios. They were the former Bushmaster crew but with improved quality over Bushmaster. In the sub 1k range for a ready to go, that is your best bet.

Hydra-matics were one of the original contract builds only for the military. You can occasionally buy them today, but since they have go fast switches and NFA, you're gonna have to up your budget a bit. Or sell your house :)

I dont think you have to question the why. Heck, probably more of a why not. IMO no collection is complete without one. The modern carbines are all good, but if you are limiting it for nostalgia, it has to be one of the most iconic rifle version if not the most iconic. 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...
59 minutes ago, Chucktshoes said:

Well, they said they had returned to the civilian market. I don’t think you can get anymore back on the market than an email blast from PSA. 
 

https://palmettostatearmory.com/colt-le-carbine-5-56x45mm-ar-15-rifle-black-cr6920.html

How much did they want for them?  Out of stock, lol.

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I've pretty much decided to go with the Windham Weaponry model. But, like all other ARs, they're sold out everywhere. IDK, maybe by the time they're back in stock I'll have gotten over this desire. 🤔

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