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Posted: 7/11/2008 5:20:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/11/2008 5:21:47 PM EDT by SeanK1ng]
I'm considering buying a .308. What advantages are there for the SA M1A vs. something like a POF .308 AR?

If it matters, I'm looking at the 22" bbl and 18" Squad Scout M1A with the black synthetic stock. I'd probably go with a 18" or 20" bbl on the .308 AR. I've heard the M1A is very reliable but how does it compare to a .308 AR? Ergonomics are better on the AR (and yes, I'm sure there will be some bias considering where I'm asking this question....is there a M1A forum here I haven't seen yet?).

What about mags....do both have reliable feeding magazines?

SA claims their rifle weighs 9.3 lbs. with no optic or loaded mag. Is an AR comparable?

I like the gas piston design so that's why I'm considering a POF (I'm not against a direct impingement AR, but I know next to nothing about their reliability). A .308 Massoud would be high on my list....but I doubt it'll be out before I decide on a purchase.

My primary use for the .308 would be longer range shooting....but not long by most standards. At most, I'd guess I'd shoot 5-600 yards with a good, high quality optic and would plan to buy some 5 round mags for hunting elk (I'm assuming 5 round mags exist...if not, please let me know). I'd also use it for long range plinking.

Any advice is appreciated. I admittedly don't know enough about the .308s....I'm just starting to look into it b/c of a really good deal a guy at work has on his M1A so if anyone can recommend a site dedicated to the M1A, I'd appreciate any help.

Thanks,
Sean

***EDIT*** and yes, I know a bolt gun would probably be better suited to elk hunting, but I'd like something that's a little more flexible in terms of what I can do with it.
Link Posted: 7/11/2008 5:42:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SeanK1ng:
My primary use for the .308 would be longer range shooting....but not long by most standards. At most, I'd guess I'd shoot 5-600 yards with a good, high quality optic and would plan to buy some 5 round mags for hunting elk (I'm assuming 5 round mags exist...if not, please let me know). I'd also use it for long range plinking.

IMHO, scoping the M1A is generally an unpleasant experience, and an area where the AR platform has its primary benefit. Exceptions to the above involve the use of several of the very nice aftermarket stocks which greatly clean up the M1A scoping situation (Troy MCS, JAE, etc.) Some of these stocks will set you back almost the same amount as a second rifle...

If you want easy access to irons along with the scope (quick detach rings, obviously), the above recommendations are even stronger.

If you can use a scout type scope, then you can achieve your goals much easier with a railed handguard on the M1A at a significantly lower cost. (Amega Ranges, etc.)
Link Posted: 7/11/2008 5:58:42 PM EDT
Not long ago, I bought an M14/S and have since shot it and handled it a good bit. Never owned one before, though I'm quite familiar with the M1 Garand. It's an "ok" rifle, but I don't like the handling properties nearly as well as I do those of the AR15 type rifles.

Additionally, I discovered the M14 takes a good bit of expensive work to get it to shoot as accurately as most AR's, regardless of caliber, shoot right out of the box. I can also see, looking at the design, that the rifle will need some "maintenance" to maintain that expensive accuracy over time. AR's don't need such maintenance to maintain their accuracy.

The M14 type rifles are reliable, but so are the AR type rifles and the AR's are less expensive to buy initially, have a larger, more available and less expensive parts base as well.

If I had it to do over again, I would buy the AR .308 instead of the M14/S. As it is, I'm keeping the M14/S stock and I'm saving up to buy an AR .308 because I can have two rifles for what it would cost to get the M14 shooting like the AR does out of the box.

Just my .02,

Dave
Link Posted: 7/11/2008 6:24:39 PM EDT
I have owned both. I originally started with a loaded M1A, synthetic stock. I bought the expensive optics mounting system( large steel plate mounted agianst reciever and held there by 2 thumb wheel machine screws) Getting that thing on the same way every time is impossable unless you spend the money to have both surfaces, surface ground parrallel. SOOO every time you dissasemble you must re-zero, More money down the drain, not to mention the finnish and rifle you just spent 1500.00 on is ruined. The rifle I purchased would not group 2.5" at 100 yds no matter what weight or brand ammo I used. I sent it back to Springfield, explained my issue, 5 weeks later I recieved the rifle, took it to the range and got the same performance I had before I sent it to them. I sold it the next week and purchased a DPMS LR308. WOW, what a difference!!! Fresh out of the box, durring break-in, cleaning after every round it was grouping 3/4 to 1/2" Now that it is broke in I have had groups as low as .287 center to center. Remember the bullet measures .308 My setup is for sale now due to other projects I am building, take a look it might be what your looking for.(EE Customised DPMS LR 308)
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 7:41:11 AM EDT
Very eye opening. I was apparently misinformed that the M1A was extremely accurate, but the issues you guys have brought up are exactly the kind of honest information I was looking for.

Any other advice is appreciated.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 7:44:30 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Dave_:
Not long ago, I bought an M14/S and have since shot it and handled it a good bit. Never owned one before, though I'm quite familiar with the M1 Garand. It's an "ok" rifle, but I don't like the handling properties nearly as well as I do those of the AR15 type rifles.

Additionally, I discovered the M14 takes a good bit of expensive work to get it to shoot as accurately as most AR's, regardless of caliber, shoot right out of the box. I can also see, looking at the design, that the rifle will need some "maintenance" to maintain that expensive accuracy over time. AR's don't need such maintenance to maintain their accuracy.

The M14 type rifles are reliable, but so are the AR type rifles and the AR's are less expensive to buy initially, have a larger, more available and less expensive parts base as well.

If I had it to do over again, I would buy the AR .308 instead of the M14/S. As it is, I'm keeping the M14/S stock and I'm saving up to buy an AR .308 because I can have two rifles for what it would cost to get the M14 shooting like the AR does out of the box.

Just my .02,

Dave


Dave,
What 'maintenance' will need to be required to keep the M1A accurate? I'm not sure I understand what you mean...

Also, as far as pricing goes, what does the .308 AR you are planning to buy run in terms of price and what brand are you looking at?

Thanks for the comment.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 7:45:41 AM EDT

Originally Posted By scout-1:
I have owned both. I originally started with a loaded M1A, synthetic stock. I bought the expensive optics mounting system( large steel plate mounted agianst reciever and held there by 2 thumb wheel machine screws) Getting that thing on the same way every time is impossable unless you spend the money to have both surfaces, surface ground parrallel. SOOO every time you dissasemble you must re-zero, More money down the drain, not to mention the finnish and rifle you just spent 1500.00 on is ruined. The rifle I purchased would not group 2.5" at 100 yds no matter what weight or brand ammo I used. I sent it back to Springfield, explained my issue, 5 weeks later I recieved the rifle, took it to the range and got the same performance I had before I sent it to them. I sold it the next week and purchased a DPMS LR308. WOW, what a difference!!! Fresh out of the box, durring break-in, cleaning after every round it was grouping 3/4 to 1/2" Now that it is broke in I have had groups as low as .287 center to center. Remember the bullet measures .308 My setup is for sale now due to other projects I am building, take a look it might be what your looking for.(EE Customised DPMS LR 308)


I'll check it out . Thanks for the tip.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 8:06:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/12/2008 10:17:36 AM EDT by SeanK1ng]
Scout-1,
Bumped your ad to the top....wow, it's a nice rifle, but I doubt I can swing the money right now. I was hoping to buy the rifle, then save up the money for the optic and accessories. Your's is ready to go....but I don't think I can scrape that much coin together before you sell it.

Good luck with the sale. It's a really nice rifle.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 8:23:14 AM EDT
all the battle rifles from the 50s and 60s were designed with iron sights only. The FAL, G3/HK91, and M1A all suffer from that fate. The AR was not deigned with optics in mind either. As things progressed, methods to mount optics to all the weapons were developed. The flat top upper seen on AR-15 and AR-10 style 308s is the most elegant and simple optic mounting solution. Now days we have optics on just about everything. From Aimpoints and EOTechs to ACOGs all the way to a big Nightforce in a LaRue mount. Irons are becoming obsolete.

Next Gen rifles, which are designed around how we shoot today, like SCAR and Magpul ACR/Massoud are coming, but not here yet. The AR-15 platform is the old school design which has adapted to the 21st century best.

When it comes to bang for the buck, the DPMS LR-308 is hard to beat.
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 8:58:50 AM EDT
I own and enjoy both,

That said, if you're gonna run an optic, get the AR10.
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 9:48:11 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SeanK1ng:

Dave,
What 'maintenance' will need to be required to keep the M1A accurate? I'm not sure I understand what you mean...


M14's do not hold their tuning long term due to the design and to bring them into shooting less than an inch, you'll need to tune them. To tune, you need to do things like unify the gas cylinder, bed the action, adjust the operating rod, etc. Some of these adjustments break down over time with shooting and cleaning and you have to do it again, just like you do with an M1 Garand. To get a more detailed explanation and to find out prices, you'd have to spend time on M14 Firing Line dot com, where they're really into M14's. All this stuff costs money and NM parts. Generally, it adds up quickly, especially with the high cost of M14 parts nowadays.

Also, as far as pricing goes, what does the .308 AR you are planning to buy run in terms of price and what brand are you looking at?

I've been looking at the DPMS rifles, as they run less in my hands than the customizing on the M14 costs for good materials and will outshoot the M14's.

Thanks for the comment.

You're welcome.



Dave
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 10:08:54 AM EDT
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 10:21:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Dave_:

Originally Posted By SeanK1ng:

Dave,
What 'maintenance' will need to be required to keep the M1A accurate? I'm not sure I understand what you mean...


M14's do not hold their tuning long term due to the design and to bring them into shooting less than an inch, you'll need to tune them. To tune, you need to do things like unify the gas cylinder, bed the action, adjust the operating rod, etc. Some of these adjustments break down over time with shooting and cleaning and you have to do it again, just like you do with an M1 Garand. To get a more detailed explanation and to find out prices, you'd have to spend time on M14 Firing Line dot com, where they're really into M14's. All this stuff costs money and NM parts. Generally, it adds up quickly, especially with the high cost of M14 parts nowadays.

Also, as far as pricing goes, what does the .308 AR you are planning to buy run in terms of price and what brand are you looking at?

I've been looking at the DPMS rifles, as they run less in my hands than the customizing on the M14 costs for good materials and will outshoot the M14's.

Thanks for the comment.

You're welcome.



Dave


Again, thanks for the info Dave. I had no idea you'd have to worry about bedding the gun over time. I'm assuming if you went to a Troy/Fulton Armory aluminum stock, the bedding issue would be taken care of, correct?.....Though I am aware that the cost of those stocks is so expensive, I could easily buy a nicely set up AR in .308. Just trying to learn more about the M1A.

I just signed up on M14 Firing Line....but they haven't approved my account yet. Thanks for the tip.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 11:18:53 AM EDT
Here's my thoughts: By the time you buy all that expensive junk trying to make an M14 look and shoot like a more modern rifle, you could buy the more modern rifle, keep the M14 original and invest the extra dough in optics and ammo.

Dave
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 11:44:06 AM EDT
I would go for the POF .308 if I bought a .308.
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 11:49:59 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Dave_:
Here's my thoughts: By the time you buy all that expensive junk trying to make an M14 look and shoot like a more modern rifle, you could buy the more modern rifle, keep the M14 original and invest the extra dough in optics and ammo.

Dave


Agreed....which is why I don't want to get into buying a Troy/Fulton Armory aluminum stock if I go M1A. Trying to KISS is getting harder to do for me it seems now.

Thanks again for all the helpful advice.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/12/2008 1:44:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Dave_:
Here's my thoughts: By the time you buy all that expensive junk trying to make an M14 look and shoot like a more modern rifle, you could buy the more modern rifle, keep the M14 original and invest the extra dough in optics and ammo.

Dave


I agree. I love the M14 / M1A, but wouldn't get one if I wasn't going to run it stock... well maybe a trigger job if it needed it, but that's about it.
Link Posted: 7/15/2008 8:37:25 AM EDT
I had a similar debate before I bought my DPMS 308B. To me it came down to one thing, accuracy out of the box.

When I asked guys about M1A accuracy out of the box they acted like I was insane for expecting at least MOA accuracy out of a $1,500 rifle. When I talked to the DPMS guys they just bragged about their rifles accuracy and they were under $1,000.

Part of it is preference. If I had used an M-14 in the service then that's probably the way I'd go, I used an M-16 and that's the platform I'm very familiar with. Good luck with whatever you chose.
Link Posted: 7/15/2008 12:23:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By teddy12b:
I had a similar debate before I bought my DPMS 308B. To me it came down to one thing, accuracy out of the box.

When I asked guys about M1A accuracy out of the box they acted like I was insane for expecting at least MOA accuracy out of a $1,500 rifle. When I talked to the DPMS guys they just bragged about their rifles accuracy and they were under $1,000.

Part of it is preference. If I had used an M-14 in the service then that's probably the way I'd go, I used an M-16 and that's the platform I'm very familiar with. Good luck with whatever you chose.


That is funny. You don't need to spend $1,500 to get consistent sub MOA groups with the AR platform. You can build it yourself for around $900 or so if you shop wisely and have a hell of a shooter.
Link Posted: 7/15/2008 12:44:37 PM EDT
The M1A weighs close to 10 pounds if not more. What are you going to be using the rifle for? It seems you have decided on 7.62x51 as being the caliber of choice, now just compare your 2 options and decide which one would be more practical. Competition, bench rest, hunting, plinking?
Link Posted: 7/15/2008 1:01:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By john575:
I would go for the POF .308 if I bought a .308.



Just curious why you would buy the POF at roughly $2500+ as compared to the Armalites and Dpms's of the world? Seems to me while the POF maybe nice they sure haven't been on the market very long and have been rather difficult to obtain.
Link Posted: 7/15/2008 5:26:29 PM EDT
I just went through the process you are considering. I finished my Fulton Armory/DPMS .308 last month, it shot everything sub MOA. I spent last fall building a match grade Garand, bought the Kuhnhausen book, match barrel, bedding, tighten rear sight, rework trigger, new stock, lap bolt face and lugs. I could never reach MOA accuracy, granted the M1A is superior to the Garand for accuracy, and my eyes aren't what they once were, but it wasn't even close. The barrel on an AR series rifle can be floated, the M1A and most gas piston rifles have tons of hardware on their barrels that vibrate differently every shot. The bolt on the AR has at least 6 lugs ( I forget exactly how many), meaning the load is evenly spread, the M1A has 2, and a with a smallish bolt that can pivot, the AR bolts are held securely by the bolt carrier. The action on the M1A is a loose fit in a wooden stock, there is no stock on the AR, everything bolts to the receiver. I won't even bother arguing optics. Build the AR.
Link Posted: 7/15/2008 8:40:21 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/15/2008 8:43:01 PM EDT by Sniper3142]

Originally Posted By Dave_:
Here's my thoughts: By the time you buy all that expensive junk trying to make an M14 look and shoot like a more modern rifle, you could buy the more modern rifle, keep the M14 original and invest the extra dough in optics and ammo.

Dave


Brother... I know exactly what you're talking about!

I currently have an M1A being accurized by GAP. They are putting a Douglas SS barrel, Troy MCS (to eliminate the need to bed), and a Vortex FH on it. Hopefully, it will be a good shooter after all of this work. I've tried multiple stocks and upgrades to improve the ergonomics, flexibility, and duarbility of the rifle.

Even with all of that work, it is STILL not even close to what an AR pattern rifle can do.

The AR rifle has, in it's favor:

- Better ergonomics (control layout, grips, buttstocks, etc).
- Better sighting options (optics, BUIS).
- Easier takedown and maintenance/cleaning (all you need is CLP, no grease or other stuff).
- Far superior flexibilty due to the Upper/Lower receiver setup (easy to change uppers and totally transform the rifle caliber, barrel length, etc).
- Vastly larger options for after market items.

The list goes on.



BTW, I'm building an AR pattern rifle right now.


Link Posted: 7/16/2008 5:02:03 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Sniper3142:

Originally Posted By Dave_:
Here's my thoughts: By the time you buy all that expensive junk trying to make an M14 look and shoot like a more modern rifle, you could buy the more modern rifle, keep the M14 original and invest the extra dough in optics and ammo.

Dave


Brother... I know exactly what you're talking about!

I currently have an M1A being accurized by GAP. They are putting a Douglas SS barrel, Troy MCS (to eliminate the need to bed), and a Vortex FH on it. Hopefully, it will be a good shooter after all of this work. I've tried multiple stocks and upgrades to improve the ergonomics, flexibility, and duarbility of the rifle.

Even with all of that work, it is STILL not even close to what an AR pattern rifle can do.

The AR rifle has, in it's favor:

- Better ergonomics (control layout, grips, buttstocks, etc).
- Better sighting options (optics, BUIS).
- Easier takedown and maintenance/cleaning (all you need is CLP, no grease or other stuff).
- Far superior flexibilty due to the Upper/Lower receiver setup (easy to change uppers and totally transform the rifle caliber, barrel length, etc).
- Vastly larger options for after market items.

The list goes on.



BTW, I'm building an AR pattern rifle right now.




And I hate to say it, but as much as I was really leaning towards the M1A, I think I may end up going AR for all the reasons you mention.

What I'm noticing with the M1A is that it's a mixed bag in terms of accuracy. I don't want a bedded "match" gun and I don't to spend $700 on a Troy or SAGE stock (nor do I really care for the look of either). I want a fiberglass stock with a good optic but unless you start spending $3800 for a Crazy Horse model, a standard 18" Scout Squad from SAI may or may not produce a 1-2 MOA gun....luck of the draw. Then you have to spend all sorts of money upgrading things and with a SAI, you still have the arguably weaker cast receiver (though I doubt that matters as much as the size variations/out of spec receivers) that can make optic mounting a challenge....good thing the Sadlak mount can accomodate these variances somewhat.

Thanks for all the opinions....keep 'em coming.

I'm getting the 22" bbl standard SAI M1A today from the guy at work.....I can't pass it up for the price. If nothing else, I'll be giving it to my Dad. At least it should tell me if I want another one or if I should be looking at a AR or maybe even SCAR-H.....assuming it ever actually is available for sale.

Thanks again,
Sean
Link Posted: 7/17/2008 8:17:21 AM EDT
I've had both. I've owned Springfield M1A's in loaded and SOCOM varieties, and I've owned a Polytech M14S. I don't have any of those rifles right now. I have a DPMS LR308T (16" barrel, A2 stock), and so far, it's everything that I've been looking for. I hand load 125grn Nosler ballistic tips that still hit about 2600 fps even with the short barrel. I tried really hard to keep my M1A's, but I just couldn't afford to make them into what I was after. M1A/M14's are beautifully simple rifles, that are built like the proverbial tank. They are classic Americana, and I will own another one some day, but it will stay in the original configuration. My LR308 cost me about $400 less before I added anything to it. And as has already been said, scoping it was very simple. Just the high rings and scope that I already owned was all I needed. I don't know if I helped sway anyone, because I think that your choice depends on what the rifle will be used for and individual taste.
Link Posted: 7/19/2008 2:18:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/19/2008 2:21:06 AM EDT by Silver78]
I think poopile summarized this very well. It's a choice between a classic rifle and a more modern one. It really depends on what you want. I remember having a similar discussion with Clint McKee several years ago. Clint is the owner of Fulton Armory. I was going through the same decision making process. At the time it was a choice between the M14 and the AR-10. There were few other 308 AR platforms on the market. Fulton, DPMS Bushmaster and Rock River had not introduced their products.

Anyway Clint knew that I really wanted something accurate and he also knew that I wanted to mount an optic on it. So in the end he said something like:

"If you want accuracy, the AR-10 will be a better choice for you... but an AR-10 will never be a classic steel framed rifle like the M14."

This was a very significant comment for Clint to make at the time because his shop offered M14 parts and services and he had not yet developed the 308 Titan offering. So he was basically turning away a customer. I always appreciated his honesty in this matter.

So I bought the AR10 and never looked back. Clint didn't really lose out either. I have a Fulton Armory AR-15 in my safe as well. While they are a bit on the expensive side, Fulton Armory makes a very accurate rifle.

If I was in the market for a 308 semi auto today I would take a hard look at Armalite, Fulton, POF, Rock River and DPMS

I wish you the best with your decision.
Link Posted: 7/19/2008 3:53:52 AM EDT
The M-14 (M-1A) can be very accurate, it just depends on how it's tuned. The .308 AR's may have an advantage over them, but for sheer elegance of design, you can't beat the M-1A.

Scoping can be a PITA since most commercial recievers (with the exception of LRB) aren't dimensionally correct for a scope mount. That said, there are mounts out there that overcome this - such as the basset mount, Sadlak and Smith Enterprise.

Link Posted: 7/19/2008 4:31:01 AM EDT
None other than LtCol Norman A Chandler, USMC(Ret), arguably the Guru of all things relating to Marine Corps sniping, has spoken out against the use of the M-14 in a combat role.

In an article in the October 2000 issue of the Marine Corps Gazette he states "We had hoped that the Corps had finally allowed the old war horse to die, but the known distance shooters keep dragging it back into the fray. The M14 requires more gunsmithing to keep operable than any rifle the Corps ever had. It cannot be modified into a hardy, tough, and accurate sniper rifle, observer's weapon, or designated markman's gun. The U.S. Army tried for more than 20 years to modify the M14 into a decent sniper weapon system. They failed. The Corps has done no better. In 1998, GySgt Jim Owens tested the Corps' latest attempt to harden the M14, and the rifle flatout failed. For marksmanship, given enough loving care and at astonishing expense, the M14 can shoot well. Take it to the field, and it all goes quickly to hell."
Link Posted: 7/19/2008 1:29:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By OMR_RDTandE:
None other than LtCol Norman A Chandler, USMC(Ret), arguably the Guru of all things relating to Marine Corps sniping, has spoken out against the use of the M-14 in a combat role.

In an article in the October 2000 issue of the Marine Corps Gazette he states "We had hoped that the Corps had finally allowed the old war horse to die, but the known distance shooters keep dragging it back into the fray. The M14 requires more gunsmithing to keep operable than any rifle the Corps ever had. It cannot be modified into a hardy, tough, and accurate sniper rifle, observer's weapon, or designated markman's gun. The U.S. Army tried for more than 20 years to modify the M14 into a decent sniper weapon system. They failed. The Corps has done no better. In 1998, GySgt Jim Owens tested the Corps' latest attempt to harden the M14, and the rifle flatout failed. For marksmanship, given enough loving care and at astonishing expense, the M14 can shoot well. Take it to the field, and it all goes quickly to hell."


I'm in no position to question the above quote, but here is a counter point about the SEI M14 rifles being built for current duty.

www.m14tfl.com/upload/showthread.php?t=54162&highlight=SEI+demonstration

Granted, I'm just reading what is written on SEI's site....but it *sounds* like a good, reliable platform with very good accuracy.

Please take a read and give me your obviously knowledgeable input:

www.smithenterprise.com/products02.html

Personally, after a LOT of research....it looks like I'm going to go with a .308 AR instead of an M1A/M14. But, if I were going to go to the additional expense, the SEI M14 SDM seems like a very nice rifle. Am I completley off base here?

Thanks,
Sean
Link Posted: 7/19/2008 1:39:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Silver78:
I think poopile summarized this very well. It's a choice between a classic rifle and a more modern one. It really depends on what you want. I remember having a similar discussion with Clint McKee several years ago. Clint is the owner of Fulton Armory. I was going through the same decision making process. At the time it was a choice between the M14 and the AR-10. There were few other 308 AR platforms on the market. Fulton, DPMS Bushmaster and Rock River had not introduced their products.

Anyway Clint knew that I really wanted something accurate and he also knew that I wanted to mount an optic on it. So in the end he said something like:

"If you want accuracy, the AR-10 will be a better choice for you... but an AR-10 will never be a classic steel framed rifle like the M14."

This was a very significant comment for Clint to make at the time because his shop offered M14 parts and services and he had not yet developed the 308 Titan offering. So he was basically turning away a customer. I always appreciated his honesty in this matter.

So I bought the AR10 and never looked back. Clint didn't really lose out either. I have a Fulton Armory AR-15 in my safe as well. While they are a bit on the expensive side, Fulton Armory makes a very accurate rifle.

If I was in the market for a 308 semi auto today I would take a hard look at Armalite, Fulton, POF, Rock River and DPMS

I wish you the best with your decision.


BTW, thanks very much for your post. It helped alot. I'm planning to go with a POF....just gotta decide on the bbl. I found a few .308 POFs for sale, but they are all 16.5" bbls so I don't think they'd be appropriate for 5-600 yard shots, but maybe I'm wrong.

I have a feeling I'm going to have to place and order for the 20" and then wait the 8 months to have it built.

Thanks again,
Sean
Link Posted: 7/19/2008 1:49:57 PM EDT
Sean, just a question why do you feel that the POF is the way to go? I'm sure it's a fine weapon but as a long distance shooter the DI system has been very very good to many a marksman.
Link Posted: 7/19/2008 3:03:20 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/19/2008 3:26:50 PM EDT by SeanK1ng]

Originally Posted By LastRites:
Sean, just a question why do you feel that the POF is the way to go? I'm sure it's a fine weapon but as a long distance shooter the DI system has been very very good to many a marksman.


I own both DI and GP guns. I prefer the GP for their easy maintenance and what feel is a more reliable operating system due to less heat and fouling.

If I was ONLY concerned about accuracy, then the DI gun would probably get my vote, but as it is, the Armalite I like is going to be over $2100 by the time I get it configured the way I want and the DPMS is just over $2100 too so they are in the realm of what I'd spend on the POF anyway. I am concerned about accuracy to a degree...I want a 1 MOA gun and by all accounts on the POF, it's sub-MOA.

Weight is another issue....somehow the POFs are listed as lighter by 1/2 lb or more.....that will start to add up once I put on a big hunk of glass (if that's actually true and I do have some reservations about that).

I also like the nickle silicone coating POF uses and having spoken with Frank (the owner of POF) on numerous occassions, he's the kind of person I'd like to do business with.

Again, I have nothing against DI ARs....I own them and like them too....I just prefer the GP.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/25/2008 8:20:26 PM EDT
If this oft-quoted report on Chuck Hawks' site is to be believed, the manufacturer of the M1A doesn't expect their products to be tack-drivers.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 6:10:47 AM EDT
I've shot a few M1As and my LR308 has held better accuracy. I think in regards to weight, recoil, and ergonomics the AR platform beats it hands down. I don't know if it means that much to you but they had to make a M1A class at Camp Perry because it was getting it's butt kicked by the 5.56 ARs. Most AR10s or LR308s will out shoot the M1A unless there was a lot of work $$$ done to the M1A. IMHO
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 10:17:35 AM EDT
Pick up a DPMS LR-308 configuration for under $1k (there are plenty out there), rings/single optics mount with integrated rings and your glass. Done. I've got a DPMS LR-308T with Burris Tactical rings and a Leu 4-12x40 VX-II sitting on top...still under $1,350 invested. It eats everything .308 and does it accurately. Putting rounds on target, accurately, with little maintenance and easy cleaning...LR-308.

If I had the extra dough, I'd put an M1A in the safe but I use the DPMS on the range an in the field (hunting) with no regrets.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 10:19:13 AM EDT

Originally Posted By workinwifdakids:
If this oft-quoted report on Chuck Hawks' site is to be believed, the manufacturer of the M1A doesn't expect their products to be tack-drivers.
I was told by SAI that for the standard M1A....they guarantee 3MOA.

FYI,
Sean

PS. Thanks for the link....interesting information.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 10:25:03 AM EDT
Guess I should update.

I ended up buying a POF P-308 with the 16.5" bbl. According to Frank the owner of POF, they are being used for competition matches out to 920 yards, so it should work for my 5-600M estimated occassional use.

I would have preferred the 20", but I'm a little concerned that in 5-10 months the price may be significantly higher (due to dropping dollar value) or ban legislation may be in the works. I didn't want to chance it. A bird in hand is worth two in the bush.

I should have the rifle on Wednesday (it's being shipped from a dealer that had one in stock in MN).

I'll post up some pics when I get it. Still looking for glass, but I did order mags and Troy BUIS already.

Thanks for everyone's input. I really like the M1A but after researching it, I was pretty set on getting a rifle from SEI and at $3800 or so for just the rilfe, it became a numbers game....not to mention the ease of cleaning, ergonomics, etc. went to the AR.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 11:25:08 AM EDT
Very nice, you are sure to enjoy it. What kind of glass and rings are you looking at for your new weapon.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 12:17:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LastRites:
Very nice, you are sure to enjoy it. What kind of glass and rings are you looking at for your new weapon.


Most people are going to laugh, but I already spent way more on going to a .308 than I had planned. My original plan was a $1500 M1A Scout Squad with the 18" bbl and synth stock a sling and a nice scope.

I have little experience with scopes....mostly cheap 4x Bushnell at 300 yards or less. That said, I have never been let down by one of these cheap scopes.

I have a friend that has a nice SA (actually a Hakko) 6-20X54 on a SAI M21 Tactical. I like the magnification for the targets we were shooting out to 500M.

As I said, I don't have a lot of coin, so my thought is the Bushnell 4200 Elite series in a 6-24X50mm (30mm body) with most likely a GGG Accucam mount.

I realize it's no Leupold Mark 4 or IOR, Nightforce, etc. but I think it will serve me well and has the features I think I need (though the turrets are MOA and the reticle is mil-dot...and I'm sure the reticle is SFP, not FFP). For the money though ($569), I think it's hard to beat for the features. I'll end up spending a lot more on the mount than I wanted (around $200) but if the scope just isn't right, at least the mount will be a good quality one and I can buy a new scope as funds allow. Weight seems comparable with most in this magnification range though the max adjustment is only 50 MOA for elevation which may be a problem at 600M with a 16.5" bbl.

Any suggestions? I really can't afford to spend too much more on the scope, so I think that's about as good as it gets with that kind of magnification. A friend did recommend some VX-III Leupolds, but most were 4-14X40mm that I remember looking at in this general price range. The warranty on Leupold is good (although the Elite Bushnell's are also lifetime) but I'm reading more accounts of the optics not being all that great.

Any input appreciated.

Sean

Link Posted: 7/26/2008 12:35:49 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/26/2008 12:36:07 PM EDT by Hokie]
IBLG...

I'm partial to the M1A provided it's chaulk full of USGI components. IMHO if you're looking for sub-MOA accuracy from a 308 cartridge, you need to build yourself a nice bolt action. If consistent minute of man accuracy is what you're after = M1A!!! If you want an expensive and nifty 10lbs hobby gun that'll spend more time stroking your credit card than sitting ready at the range, then the choice is obvious. YMMV.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 2:23:56 PM EDT
IMHO Nikon offers way more than a comparable Leupold every day of the week, same warrantry and some of the best glass in the business. Same lens that make their cameras some of the best in the biz. Sold my Leopolds and now I own Nikons. Natchez runs some pretty stellar deals on both Nikon and the bushnells.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 2:32:46 PM EDT
You might want to take a look at Burris Fullfield II scopes. They offer a lot of value for the money and I read on several "sniper" forums that guys that owned both Leupolds and the Burris were as happy if not happier with their Burris as they were with their Leupolds. I ended up with the Burris Fullfield II and have been very happy with mine.

Regards,

Dave
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 3:56:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hokie:
IBLG...

I'm partial to the M1A provided it's chaulk full of USGI components. IMHO if you're looking for sub-MOA accuracy from a 308 cartridge, you need to build yourself a nice bolt action. If consistent minute of man accuracy is what you're after = M1A!!! If you want an expensive and nifty 10lbs hobby gun that'll spend more time stroking your credit card than sitting ready at the range, then the choice is obvious. YMMV.


IBLG?

In Before ? ?

I respect your opinion, but I'm not looking for a bolt gun. If the POF 308 will hit targets at 600 yards...I'll be happy as long as it is reliable....which they seem to be (albeit, they are newer to the 308 and 556 market).

If it won't do that, I'll probably sell it off and got with a SEI Crazy Horse.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 4:05:04 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Dave_:
You might want to take a look at Burris Fullfield II scopes. They offer a lot of value for the money and I read on several "sniper" forums that guys that owned both Leupolds and the Burris were as happy if not happier with their Burris as they were with their Leupolds. I ended up with the Burris Fullfield II and have been very happy with mine.

Regards,

Dave


Last Rites and Dave,

Thanks for the input....just went to my local gunstore to look at optics. I'm looking at both the Nikons and Burris now as well. Thanks for the tips.

Sean
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 4:43:07 PM EDT
+1 for nikon.
Link Posted: 7/26/2008 7:13:08 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SeanK1ng:

Originally Posted By Hokie:
IBLG...

I'm partial to the M1A provided it's chaulk full of USGI components. IMHO if you're looking for sub-MOA accuracy from a 308 cartridge, you need to build yourself a nice bolt action. If consistent minute of man accuracy is what you're after = M1A!!! If you want an expensive and nifty 10lbs hobby gun that'll spend more time stroking your credit card than sitting ready at the range, then the choice is obvious. YMMV.


IBLG?

In Before ? ?

I respect your opinion, but I'm not looking for a bolt gun. If the POF 308 will hit targets at 600 yards...I'll be happy as long as it is reliable....which they seem to be (albeit, they are newer to the 308 and 556 market).

If it won't do that, I'll probably sell it off and got with a SEI Crazy Horse.

Sean


Sounds like you've made a choice then

Link Posted: 7/30/2008 6:40:08 PM EDT
Picked it up today. Will try and get pics up soon....hopefully by the weekend. Planning to take it to the indoor range (hot as heck here in AZ now) just to fire it, and sight in the BUIS.

Sean
Link Posted: 8/2/2008 4:35:07 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/2/2008 4:36:31 PM EDT by SeanK1ng]
Pics....



I still have to buy a scope. I just bought a GG&G QD accucam mount for 30mm rings, but it is in transit.

Pretty sure I'm going to "cheap out" on the scope for now. I spent WAAAAY too much money on this thing and ammo and mags, so I'll be getting a Bushnell 4200 Elite series in a 6-24x50mm most likely. I've looked at all kinds of scopes and for the money, this one seems to have the most features.

Oh, and a pic with the "new ".308 30 round mag :



Sean

Link Posted: 8/3/2008 12:45:40 PM EDT
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