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Posted: 2/24/2005 10:02:40 AM EDT

I'm new to this community and relatively new to the AR. I currently have a 24inch custom made AR from a gunsmith in CO named Mark Chanlyn, its a great gun.

For my upcoming birthday (March) I'm taking a 5 day tactical carbine class at Blackwater (www.blackwaterusa.com) and want to get the "ultimate setup" for a tactical carbine for that class. I wanted to to ask the community what they thought was the best complete setup for a CQB and tactical carbine setup. I am planning on getting a new "complete" rifle, if the groups suggestion is that I get a lower from a different manufacturer than the upper thats fine too, but I am not planning on using the lower I have on my other AR.

To make matters worse I'm a leftie, though 95% of the shooting I've done has been with right handed firearms.

Any advice you can give would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance.

John
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 10:11:54 AM EDT
Keep It Simple. You won't regret that!

I like a basic M4 carbean with a weapon mounted light of some sort. I use the M3 light rail from GG&G. Iron sights only for me. And an Israeli sling to finish it off. I hate 3 points slings they are too limiting. The Israeli sling offers the same method of carry, but with versitility of the two point attachment.

Simple is good in these classes.

w00t!
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 10:16:50 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/25/2005 7:05:26 AM EDT by Aimless]
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 10:20:43 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 10:35:01 AM EDT
Out of the box, Colt LE6920.
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 10:37:07 AM EDT
Blackwater also has a complete Pro-Shop on site. If there is something you need for or during the class, there is a likely chance the Pro-Shop will have it.

Keep us posted on the class and what you gained from the experience.
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 11:33:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Boomer:
Out of the box, Colt LE6920.



+1 It's lighter than an HBAR, customizable with the flattop, comes with the carry handle (learn to use the irons for now), and comes from the company that makes the most reliable-out-of-the-box ARs.
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 11:34:58 AM EDT
My primary defensive carbines were "born" as a result of my reality being shattered at my very first carbine class. I came out of that first class not only a more capable shooter, but also with a better understanding that I only know a fraction as much as I think I do.

If you have the option, get a basic carbine (or two preferably) and bring it. The Blackwater crew will help you outfit your rifle appropriately for your mission parameters and abilities. Whatever you end up buying put a few cases of ammo through it before you take the class to make sure it's reliable-especially when hot. There is nothing worse than troubleshooting on the ready line, particularly when you're paying good money for instruction.

My defensive guns are a pretty low tech compared to most. I ditched my adjustable triggers and resisted the urge to freefloat. Simple is good.

Link Posted: 2/24/2005 11:46:13 AM EDT

Originally Posted By CJan_NH:
My defensive guns are a pretty low tech compared to most.




Same here. The only gun more simple than mine was the instructors.
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 12:06:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ikold:
I'm taking a 5 day tactical carbine class



Damn!

5 days?!

You may want an AK after all that!! or Golf clubs!...j/k

That would be an awesome experience, and I for one, hope you share the experience with us afterward.

Nice gift...............if there is a connection to this, and the BD you mentioned
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 12:43:01 PM EDT
+1 colt 6920. I have a 6920HB and love it!
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 12:48:30 PM EDT
KISS is definitely the best way to go right now. I totally agree with markm: get an Israeli sling for your first. Here's a link to DSG Arms; they're great to deal with and sell a ton of Israeli slings.

After the class you'll have a better idea if you want a magnified optic (like an ACOG) or an Aimpoint/EOTech, and if you want to hang a vertical foregrip on it, plus if you want to free float the front or go with simpler solutions (aka, my miserly way).

Best of luck with all. Enjoy your class and be sure to give us a full report when you get back!
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 3:32:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By El_Roto:
After the class you'll have a better idea if you want a magnified optic (like an ACOG) or an Aimpoint/EOTech



This is precisely why I ended up with two first line defensive carbines. The instructors were big on extolling the virtues of not only the Aimpoint/EOTech, but also for low magnification optics for longer distances.

Oddly enough most of the instructors didn't care for the 2x Aimpoint. I asked if it would be a decent compromise between an unmagnified Aimpoint and an ACOG. The consensus was that it was a good idea in concept, but Aimpoint really screwed the pooch in the execution. I was ready to buy one, but after hearing the chorus of negativity I didn't.
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 4:32:32 PM EDT
+1 on keeping it simple--less dohickies to break on you

i would get a 14.5in +perm phantom m4 bbl M4 type w/ an A3 upper--BUSHMASTER stock rifle or get an upper and put it on a lower (cmmg, lmt uppers are nice for the price)

good optics (aimpoint), perhaps a tac light (surefire), BUIS backup sights, and a good sling would help out too
Link Posted: 2/24/2005 5:32:13 PM EDT
eothingie is a good thingie
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 6:31:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By CJan_NH:
My primary defensive carbines were "born" as a result of my reality being shattered at my very first carbine class. I came out of that first class not only a more capable shooter, but also with a better understanding that I only know a fraction as much as I think I do.

If you have the option, get a basic carbine (or two preferably) and bring it. The Blackwater crew will help you outfit your rifle appropriately for your mission parameters and abilities. Whatever you end up buying put a few cases of ammo through it before you take the class to make sure it's reliable-especially when hot. There is nothing worse than troubleshooting on the ready line, particularly when you're paying good money for instruction.

My defensive guns are a pretty low tech compared to most. I ditched my adjustable triggers and resisted the urge to freefloat. Simple is good.





How simple and low tech are we talking? I've not gone to a class or to war, but I do have an ongoing debate with a few guys who like to hang all kinds of stuff on their guns.

My real world experience with stuff in general is that anything that sticks out will catch, bang, snag, break, bump, clang, poke and/or rattle. The more things you have the more clanging, banging, snagging, bumping, catching, poking your stuff will be doing.
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 6:53:56 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/25/2005 6:55:43 AM EDT by CJan_NH]

Originally Posted By monkeyman:

Originally Posted By CJan_NH:
My primary defensive carbines were "born" as a result of my reality being shattered at my very first carbine class. I came out of that first class not only a more capable shooter, but also with a better understanding that I only know a fraction as much as I think I do.

If you have the option, get a basic carbine (or two preferably) and bring it. The Blackwater crew will help you outfit your rifle appropriately for your mission parameters and abilities. Whatever you end up buying put a few cases of ammo through it before you take the class to make sure it's reliable-especially when hot. There is nothing worse than troubleshooting on the ready line, particularly when you're paying good money for instruction.

My defensive guns are a pretty low tech compared to most. I ditched my adjustable triggers and resisted the urge to freefloat. Simple is good.





How simple and low tech are we talking? I've not gone to a class or to war, but I do have an ongoing debate with a few guys who like to hang all kinds of stuff on their guns.

My real world experience with stuff in general is that anything that sticks out will catch, bang, snag, break, bump, clang, poke and/or rattle. The more things you have the more clanging, banging, snagging, bumping, catching, poking your stuff will be doing.


This is my non-professional interpretation of simple:



Every shooter has a different interpretation of what they need, and some things that work for me are despised by others. My carbines with optics are more complicated than the rifle above, but they still lack the FF forends etc sometimes found on other peoples 'ideal' defensive carbines.



I'm certainly not knocking FF forends, vertical foregrips etc-there are scores of people here who use them on their fighting carbines. For what I use/need my rifles for they aren't necessary.

While they aren't for me-that doesn't mean that they don't enhance the capabilities of someone elses weapons.

Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:02:36 AM EDT
Thanks for all your suggestions. Looks like the resounding opinion is to get somthing stock without optics take the class and than decide. I am leaning towards the Stag Arms 2l (its aleft handed setup) would anyone caution me against that?


Thanks again for everyones advice. I will be sure to take some digital photos and let the group know about the class.


Regards,

John
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:16:31 AM EDT

Originally Posted By markm:
Keep It Simple. You won't regret that!

I like a basic M4 carbean with a weapon mounted light of some sort. I use the M3 light rail from GG&G. Iron sights only for me. And an Israeli sling to finish it off. I hate 3 points slings they are too limiting. The Israeli sling offers the same method of carry, but with versitility of the two point attachment.

Simple is good in these classes.

w00t!




All these accessories should be banned
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:18:30 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:22:04 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/25/2005 10:24:09 AM EDT by RAMBOSKY]
Shoot a basic AR now.....buy accessories later.

Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:24:34 AM EDT
Take a drive to Virginia Arms in Manassas and buy a Bushy M4
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:28:20 AM EDT
The number one reason for problems/failures I saw at Blackwater was due to brand new, unproven equipment.

Get yourself a Colt, Bushmaster, RRA or Armalite...new in box and get at least 1000-2000 rounds through it before you show up. Get your iron sights and optic (if you have one) sighted in and make sure you have 12-15 proven mags to take with you. If anything should go wrong while you are there Blackwater will have everything you'll need and their armorer is one of if not the best in the country.

Just make sure you get a carbine ASAP and get some rounds through it first!

I'd try these to places first as they seem to have carbines in stock and can get one out to you ASAP.
ADCO Firearms
Eagle Firearms

Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:30:05 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/13/2005 6:19:24 AM EDT by Hokie]
.
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 10:36:50 AM EDT

Originally Posted By markm:
Keep It Simple. You won't regret that!

I like a basic M4 carbean with a weapon mounted light of some sort. I use the M3 light rail from GG&G. Iron sights only for me. And an Israeli sling to finish it off. I hate 3 points slings they are too limiting. The Israeli sling offers the same method of carry, but with versitility of the two point attachment.

Simple is good in these classes.

w00t!



3 point slings are limiting???
How so???

ikold
I agree keep it simple. You don't need a ton of crap hanging off the rifle. A light and a vert fwd grip are nice to have, but no need to go overboard. I'd take a dot site over plain irons, and a low poer variable over the dot or irons, but that like pretty much everything else is personal preferance. Being that you are new to the AR i'd say keep it as simple as possible and worry about learning to use it first over the cool factor stuff.
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 1:33:05 PM EDT

Originally Posted By stryfox:
eothingie is a good thingie


Link Posted: 2/25/2005 1:33:46 PM EDT


For my upcoming birthday (March) I'm taking a 5 day tactical carbine class at Blackwater



Wow- this kid has his priorities straight!!
I agree on the simple setup, yet I would outfit the carbine with
stuff which makes it more ambi- a Norgon Ambi Mag Catch and
an ambi safety. This way you can concentrate on the class and are
not handicapped by being a lefty.
No optics may be fine, but for a 5day class, I would at least try to
borrow an optic for one or two days to get to know the difference.
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 1:36:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hokie:
perfect tactical carbine setup
img.photobucket.com/albums/v734/Hokie1850/ar1.jpg



hard to argue with that........
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 6:56:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ikold:
I am leaning towards the Stag Arms 2l (its aleft handed setup) would anyone caution me against that?



Totally.

I shoot long arms lefty (I'm right-handed, but left-eyed), and I shoot a standard setup Bushie and Colt, w/o any ambi-dohickies and I've never felt "left behind". (pun intended) The M-16/AR-15 is so well-designed, IMO, it's already setup as an ambidextrous weapon right out of the box.

Unless someone is extremely left-side biased, I don't see a need for purchasing the Stag Arms leftie model.
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 7:09:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By markm:
Keep It Simple. You won't regret that!

I like a basic M4 carbean with a weapon mounted light of some sort. I use the M3 light rail from GG&G. Iron sights only for me. And an Israeli sling to finish it off. I hate 3 points slings they are too limiting. The Israeli sling offers the same method of carry, but with versitility of the two point attachment.

Simple is good in these classes.

w00t!



Words to live by.
Link Posted: 2/25/2005 7:22:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/25/2005 7:23:13 PM EDT by Boom_Stick]
I haven't been to a carbine class, but If I did this is how I'd go. The only thing I'd add is a mounted light.

Carbine w/Aimpoint, QRP mount & #40 or a cut carry handle(Bottom rifle).

Link Posted: 2/26/2005 3:49:29 AM EDT
ikold - I see several people here mentioning weapon lights. Check with BW first but you may not need to spend the money on a light right now...it will depend on what class you're taking.
Link Posted: 2/26/2005 4:37:20 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/26/2005 4:43:32 AM EDT by Sargeshobbies]
Well.....mine is'nt the simplest or the most "pimped" out but it works fine for me.
The only thing I'm considering to add to this is a good light and mount.

Link Posted: 2/26/2005 4:56:39 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/11/2005 4:23:11 AM EDT by USMC03]
.
Link Posted: 2/26/2005 5:54:13 AM EDT
Colt LE6920 or Bushmaster M4A3 with 14.5" barrel and permanently attached Phantom 5c1 + Hogue grip (you can have your FFL dealer order this setup directly from Bushmaster).
Link Posted: 2/26/2005 8:25:11 AM EDT
John - Listen to USMC03. He knows whereof he speaks.

And apply the same principles to your handgun. You are taking a handgun., right?
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 5:06:28 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/11/2005 4:23:33 AM EDT by USMC03]
.
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 5:18:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/27/2005 5:19:09 AM EDT by M4arc]

Originally Posted By DocGun:
Colt LE6920 or Bushmaster M4A3 with 14.5" barrel and permanently attached Phantom 5c1 + Hogue grip (you can have your FFL dealer order this setup directly from Bushmaster).



I'm not so sure I would take a 14.5" carbine back to Blackwater. For one, a 16" is only giving up an inch in overall length to a 14.5 w/perm Phantom and second, those of us with 14.5s had a harder time knocking down some of the man sized poppers. We had to make direct head shots and get them rocking in order to get them down. The guys with 16" carbines had a little easier of a time and a couple with 20" rifles had no problems what so ever. I love my little 14.5" carbines but the 16" barrels are starting to make a little more sense.

Of course Shivan with his .458 had no problems getting them down with the first shot
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 6:06:44 AM EDT
USMC03 Thank you for all your advice I appreciate your lending your expertise.
It sounds like I should get a right handed setup and not mess with the Stag Arms leftie setup, and that I should go with either Colt, RRA, or Bushmaster in an M4 with 16" chrome barrel, tactical stock, and USGI mags, as for slings I already placed an order for the sling that someone in this thread had posted about. What does the group think of the RRA M4 Entry tactical (or their Government model?), someone at a shop had mentioned the Bushmaster Carbon 15, what are you thoughts?

As for pistols, I have a Kimber Custom II with ambi safety in .45. a Glock 17 or a CZ in 9mm. Not sure which to take. Thoughts?

What is the best holster for the pistol?
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 6:56:38 AM EDT

What is the best holster for the pistol?


If you are wearing a vest, probably a Safariland 6004. If not, what do you have that you have trained with? Have you had any training with a handgun? If not, do you have a preference on which you would use if you were in a fight. Think: Train the way you think you would fight. We just replaced two 6004's for Glocks with the model for a Glock/M3 light because we put SF X200's on two Glocks. YMMV.
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 12:25:22 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/27/2005 12:31:24 PM EDT by Accomplice]
Good CQB weapon = simple + light + compact: Bushmaster Carbon 15 pistol turned SBR.
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 3:32:09 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ikold:
As for pistols, I have a Kimber Custom II with ambi safety in .45. a Glock 17 or a CZ in 9mm. Not sure which to take. Thoughts?



Take the Glock or the Kimber. Unless you are already VERY handy with the Kimber, then take the Glock. It will be dead on reliable and simple to function and clean.

As for holsters go with a Safariland as mentioned above and PRACTICE the draw over and over again.
Link Posted: 2/27/2005 6:44:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/11/2005 4:23:56 AM EDT by USMC03]
.
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 2:50:42 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/28/2005 3:08:36 AM EDT by Submariner]

For a holster I would recommend a Blade-Tech, G-Code, or any other high quality KYDEX outside the waist band holster that attaches to the belt via BELT LOOPS. I am a big fan of train with what you will carry. If you are not going to carry your gun around on a daily basis in a tactical thigh holster, then don't wear it to training. Wear what you will use in real life!!!

Read this. Read it again. It is very good counsel. Better than what I wrote, even.

Safariland makes a Universal Belt Loop on which you can mount the holster from the 6004. Pick which one works better but have both available in the tool box.

BTW, Jeff, my first classes were with Yeager. (After Jeff's excellent 2001 posts on why if we could spend $300 on an accessory we SHOULD spend $300 on training.) If it were not for that, I today would not own any Glock 19's (only one worth having, IMVHO).
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 3:35:39 AM EDT
just buy some bushmaster 14.5 barrel.. throw it on a CMT upper.... stick with normal handguards for now.... get a flatop... get an aimpoint... and get some type of collapsing stock
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 4:52:38 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/11/2005 4:24:16 AM EDT by USMC03]
.
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 5:09:14 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 5:38:29 AM EDT
ikold - I really can't add much to what USMC03 & Submariner have said but I do want to make a comment about the carbon Bushy; don't take it! If for no other reason I doubt Blackwater's Armorer has parts to support it in case something breaks. I know they probably stock more Bushmaster parts than anyone in the world but I doubt they do anything with the carbon Bushmasters.

If you are in the Tidewater area The Armory has a standard 16" Bushmaster M4 carbine on the shelf. That would be the perfect little rifle to take to Blackwater; simple, reliable and dependable.
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 5:57:28 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/28/2005 6:00:45 AM EDT by CJan_NH]
IKold, just to add something to think about concerning what has been said here about gear.

Prior to my very first carbine I did the exact same thing you did-I asked the community how I should configure my carbine for the class. I got tons of responses, but at the time I didn't really know how to separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. I outfitted my carbine based on the consensus of what I had been told. The last thing I wanted to do was to show up to class with inferior, not enough, or inappropriate gear.

To make a long story short I ended up with a $3000 carbine that was completely overbuilt and totally inappropriate for the course being taught. By the end of that first class most of the stuff had been stripped off my gun, and I finished the course with a flashlight, backup irons, and a stock trigger. At least my base carbine was reliable, and I had taken care to bring good ammo and reliable magazines.

Don't make the same mistakes I did for my first class. Earlier in the thread when I talked about my reality being shattered, this is what happened.

Link Posted: 2/28/2005 6:14:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By USMC03:

I think everyone needs to quit worrying what the Navy SEALs, the US Army Rangers, Special Forces, USMC Force Recon, and every other high speed / low drag unit has on their gun. Their mission is far different than your average civilian.



Pat Rogers ... once called the internet the "Cow path to misinformation".....and I couldn't agree with him more.

What is very frustrating on this site is making head or tails of what is good information and what is not.

Sorry for the rant, but I hope you can tell the difference between the good information and the ... misinformation.



Great post. Good information... making that distinction is exactly what this site is all about.

FITTER
Link Posted: 2/28/2005 6:57:48 AM EDT
Tag so my brain can return for better absorption.
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