Varmint/plinking rifle questions

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Varmint/plinking rifle questions

Postby Aegis » Sun Jan 02, 2005 7:44 am

I have gotten it into my mind to blow my tax refund this year on a new plinking rifle. I have owned a Ruger 10/22 for years and as a result have been drawn to the Ruger Mini 14. I unfortunately do not know anyone who owns a mini 14, so I would like it if somebody could tell me some specifics about it. I am aware of some gripes about its accuracy at longer ranges, but considering I wouldn't be shooting at anything farther out than ~150 yards I don't know whether this will be too much of an issue. I mean, if they are grossly inaccurate that is definitely noteworthy, but I guess I am more worried about reliability and over-all ruggedness. I really don't want to lay down $500 and end up spending it all over again on repairs in 6 months.

The other rifles on my "short list" are the Kel-tech SU-16, and the AR-15. From what little I have read I really like the SU-16, but once again, it is kind of a rare rifle out where I live, so I would like a little info from somebody with first hand expirience, or any expirience for that matter, with this gun. To me it looks pretty slick, and the reviews I have read seem pretty positive, but I guess i would like a little info from a source I trust, as opposed to Google.

As I mentioned earlier, I am also interested in the AR-15, although it is a little pricey for my tastes. I have been pointed in the direction of some dealers who sell kits from which a shooter can assemble an AR-15, however, and these seem more reasonably priced. While I have been assured that these kits are fairly easy to assemble, I guess I am a little wary of trusting myself not to lose all those little sprins and whatnot.

Lastly, if anyone has any suggestions for what i am looking for, please speek up. I would like to keep all the candidates semi-automatic, chambered for .223, 22-250 or 17 HMR, and in the roughly $500 range, but I am open to other suggestions.
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Postby theJesusHorse » Sun Jan 02, 2005 3:46 pm

The Kel-tech is actually a pretty cool little rifle. It was designed as more of a "survival" type rifle than an assault weapon. Cool features...
-Uses AR-15/M16 magazines. Very convenient
-Stock folds which saves alot of space.
-Foregrip folds down to function as a bipod! Pretty innovative!
-integrated optics rail on top of the reciever. Mount a scope or a red dot sight.
-extra m16 mag storage space in the stock. useful.



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Postby Aegis » Sun Jan 02, 2005 5:54 pm

apw100 wrote:The Kel-tech is actually a pretty cool little rifle. It was designed as more of a "survival" type rifle than an assault weapon. Cool features...
-Uses AR-15/M16 magazines. Very convenient
-Stock folds which saves alot of space.
-Foregrip folds down to function as a bipod! Pretty innovative!
-integrated optics rail on top of the reciever. Mount a scope or a red dot sight.
-extra m16 mag storage space in the stock. useful.


Yeah, at the moment it is at the top of my list, due to fairly good reviews and very reasonable prices (ususally in the mid-$400 range, as opposed to upper $400 range for the Mini 14, or $500 dollars for a do-it-yourself AR-15). I am a little put off by all the plastic parts, however.

I might buy it and see how it pans out, and then look for a decent aftermarket stock if I am unsatisfied with the factory configuration.

You do have to give Kel-tech credit for being innovative, though.
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Postby theJesusHorse » Sun Jan 02, 2005 6:23 pm

I'd go with the Kel-tech. For the money, I cant find anything close to it. The Mini-14 is ok, but its an ancient design and not very innovative(There are alot of aftermarket accessories for it though).
Forget the $500 AR's, most are junk. The Olympic Arms "Plinker" costs about $550-$650. While its a decent gun, it doesnt have an optics rail and is heavier than the Kel-tech. If you want a good AR, then a basic RockRiver Arms or Olympic runs about $800.
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Postby Aegis » Wed Jan 05, 2005 6:36 am

apw100 wrote:I'd go with the Kel-tech. For the money, I cant find anything close to it. The Mini-14 is ok, but its an ancient design and not very innovative(There are alot of aftermarket accessories for it though).
Forget the $500 AR's, most are junk. The Olympic Arms "Plinker" costs about $550-$650. While its a decent gun, it doesnt have an optics rail and is heavier than the Kel-tech. If you want a good AR, then a basic RockRiver Arms or Olympic runs about $800.


I'll get an AR when I get out of grad school (so what, like, 7 years from now?). For now I am going to wait for my refund and get a kel-tech.
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Postby Tarkan » Thu Jan 06, 2005 11:49 pm

Stay far, far away from the Mini-14. It is not a good Varmint gun as it's a 4 MOA gun. Hi-cap mags are expensive and rare.

The ergonomics of the AR-15 are top notch, and it's infinitely configurable.

Going the parts kits can be real easy if, for example, you buy a assembled lower and an assembled upper, or pretty tricky if you are assembling everything from parts, especially if it's your first time doing it. While it's a valuable experience, I think for my first AR I'd just buy a stock one, or buy an already assembled upper and a lower.
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Postby Aegis » Sun Jan 09, 2005 8:25 am

Tarkan wrote:Stay far, far away from the Mini-14. It is not a good Varmint gun as it's a 4 MOA gun. Hi-cap mags are expensive and rare.

The ergonomics of the AR-15 are top notch, and it's infinitely configurable.

Going the parts kits can be real easy if, for example, you buy a assembled lower and an assembled upper, or pretty tricky if you are assembling everything from parts, especially if it's your first time doing it. While it's a valuable experience, I think for my first AR I'd just buy a stock one, or buy an already assembled upper and a lower.


Yeah, I think the plan for now is to get the SU-16, and then give myself an AR-15 as a graduation present in a few years. I definitely want to own a pre-assembled one first, so I can get used to stripping it down to clean it and whatnot before I even think about assembling one myself.

BTW, what exactly is a 4 MOA gun?
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Postby Tarkan » Mon Jan 10, 2005 12:49 am

Aegis wrote:Yeah, I think the plan for now is to get the SU-16, and then give myself an AR-15 as a graduation present in a few years. I definitely want to own a pre-assembled one first, so I can get used to stripping it down to clean it and whatnot before I even think about assembling one myself.

BTW, what exactly is a 4 MOA gun?


MOA = minute of angle. A minute of angle is approximately 1 inch at 100 yards, so a 4 MOA gun means it will shoot 4 inches at 100 yards...at it's very best. A bad shooter can make it shoot considerably worse.
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