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Durkin Tactical Franklin Armory
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Posted: 4/24/2001 8:47:36 AM EDT
I have a couple of basic questions about AR upgrades.  Again, being new to AR's please bare with me.

1) Is a flattop better than a fixed carry handle upper?  From a flexibility stand point, I would think a flattop upper would give you far more options since if you want fixed sights, simply mount a detachable carry handle.  With a quick change, you can set up a scope or dot sight.  Other than the classic look, why would you want a fixed carry handle?  

2)  What advantages do a preban lower offer over a post ban one?  I know one is the ability to legally mount an A4 style collapsible stock.  Are preban tactical stocks regulated?  What I mean is, can a person own one even if they don't have a preban lower?  I realize mounting it then becomes a problem.

I'm sure I'll come up with other questions, but that's it for now.  Thanks!

Link Posted: 4/24/2001 8:55:39 AM EDT
Your questions can be answered only if you know just what you intend to do with the rifle.  If you're going to shoot service rifle class NRA hipower, a flattop is totally worthless.  If you're going to shoot varmints at 300 yards a carry handle is just in your way.  Prebans are only valuable for the "collector" value...unless you have some need of a bayonet lug of which I'm not aware.

Most people flail off into something without a clear idea of where they want to end up...decide that, and most of your questions never arise.
Link Posted: 4/24/2001 9:08:25 AM EDT
If you want to be able to mount a bunch of overpriced electronic crap on your rifle buy a flat top.

If you want the military configuration upper (i.e. flash suppressor and bayo lug) buy a pre-ban.  when i first was considering an AR i thought i didn't needed the bayo lug and flash hider, but now that i've owned AR's for a few years, i think they just don't look right w/out the flash hider and lug.  Sorry i'm just a detail freak.
Link Posted: 4/24/2001 10:37:18 AM EDT
The flat top is the most versatile, but it will cost more since you have to buy the carry handle.  The extra cost is the only downside.  A scope mounted on the carry handle is too high and now you have to add a cheek piece to the stock.

The pre-ban lower will allow you to add the collapsible stock.  That's the biggest issue.  You can use MBs that look like FS and you really don't need the bayo lug, so you're back to the collapsible stock as the main advantage.  There's no good reason to own a collapsible stock if you can't legally install it.

I like my overpriced electronic optical crap.  That's what makes ARs fun.
Link Posted: 4/24/2001 1:34:47 PM EDT
If I understand you guys right, a Flash Hider can not be mounted on a nonregulated component (i.e. the upper and barrel) without mounting said upper to a preban lower?  Not that the Flash hider is all that important (MB's are just as cool) to me nor is the bayonet lug.  But I thought that the collapsible stock would be cool, although not really necessary.

To answer your question Celt.  I would like to put together a accurate scoped target AR (20-24" bbl) and a shorty carbine (16") with some of that overpriced electronic optical crap!

Link Posted: 4/24/2001 2:00:20 PM EDT
My opinion and the way I understand the law on this subject. The pre-ban lower gives you the option of mounting the "evil' features if you like (flash hider or lug or the collapsible stock) and the flattop upper is way more useful. If you want to mount some kind of optics the flattop allows you to get a proper cheek weld and if you like the carry handle , get a detachable one (about $75.00)
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