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Armalite 50

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Unread 06-01-2009, 11:00 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 129
Armalite 50

I was wanting to know what everyone thought about the Armalite 50's. I have the opportunity to buy and new one with the bipod and a leupold 8.5-25x50mm Mark 4 with illuminated mildot scope for 5,000.00. Is that a good deal? I believe I heard kirby say he really like their action and thought i might pick it up. Let me know what I should do if anything to it to make it shoot better. THanks
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Unread 06-01-2009, 12:07 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Northern Michigan
Posts: 37
Re: Armalite 50

1). $5000 sounds like average retail price for that setup, you probably could save a few hundred bucks shopping around. 2). I own a Mark4 with mil-dot and one with TMR reticle I would get the TMR illuminated if had to do again. 3). Everyone seems to think the SightronIII 6 x 24 is the best scope out for the money today, they very well may be right, and with +100" of elevation adjustment should be about perfect. 4). Sightrons optics are said to be as good now as NF. at less then half the price($850). That would put you behind a 50 for about $4000. Just my thoughts. No problems with my Leupolds, cant say I would buy one without seeing one in action first. Good luck.
To all our Veterans, Thank you.
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Unread 06-01-2009, 09:55 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Fort Shaw, Montana
Posts: 6,848
Re: Armalite 50

The Armalite AR-50 is a good rifle out of the box. It has its issues as do all factory rifles but all in all, for the money its pretty damn hard to beat. NOW, there are two models of this rifle, the old AR-50 and the new AR-50A1 which has been changed slightly, mainly in the bolt stop design(much better then the old) and the action is smoothed up a bit, as much as can be with a 4 lb bolt!!! Not exactly sure on that number but its BIG.

Is the AR-50A1 more accurate, not from what I have seen, is it worth the extra $500 you will pay, I would say sure but the old model is very usible and just as accurate.

The issues for both are:

1. The rifle is not pretty.... That said, its a BMG, pretty is not a requirement. Its a good design, its stock is extremely stable and strong, the receiver is over built even for the BMG and its probably the most comfortable factory 50 BMG rifles to shoot.... but its not pretty...

2. The action is big and you have to be aggressive with it. If you think you will be able to close the bolt slowly and gently close the bolt you will be unimpressed. This is not your 22 PPC BR rifle, its big and needs to be cycled like a big rifle, with a bit of aggression!!! Once you get the hang of it you will get used to it.

3. The rifle is big and long. You can get a much more compact 50 BMG which is much easier to move around and use. The size makes this rifle easy to shoot but it can be a bit of a bother if your shooting off some of the smaller benches. Still, the wider the wheel base, the more stable you will be when shooting and this certainly holds true with the AR-50, DEPENDING on the rests you use.

4. The factory throats are generally very long. At least all the ones I have seen have been VERY long. Its a single shot though. If you handload, you can seat your bullets out to the lands. If you do not, you will likely see some accuracy issues.

5. As to accuracy. THis greatly depends on what you put down the barrel. If you shoot surplus ammo, you will get surplus ammo accuracy, that being 2 moa at best. Some may do better but on average, surplus ammo will not shoot well.

Handloads using mil spec ball ammo can do pretty well as long as you sort bullets by weight and sort out the ones with loose cores. If you sort your bullets, you will likely be able to get around 1 moa with good brass, consistant powder charges and proper primer seating consistancy.

If you shoot the spendy bullets, those being the quality match bullets that you must handload and taylor load the ammo to your rifle, they can shoot very well. I am not saying you should expect 1/2 moa out of an AR-50 or the A1 but if you can shoot and you load your ammo properly, its not a shock to see this level of accuracy.

The best thing about this rifle is that it offers the owner the opportunity improve on the rifles performance. THe AR is easily accurized and rebarreled just as any conventional rifle like a Rem 700 for example. I have done this on many of them and they have all performed EXTREMELY well after rebuilding. Its hard to consider purchasing a rifle of this price just to tear it down and rebarrel it but if your after real accuracy, it can be done with the AR-50.

I would say average price for an AR-50 will be around $3100-$3300. You can find some a bit less, some a bit more but this is a decent range. THe last one I ordered a couple months ago was $3000 even and that was not dealer price. That said, You will see the price of these rifles go up every month. They are under attack and soon will likely not be available to the public so by the end of the summer, seeing $5K for just the rifle is not unrealistic.

Generally, I do not consider any optics into the price for a used rifle but the scope your talking about is a good scope with $1000 pretty easily. Brand new you will drop $1400 or so on that scope. Add $170 for a good set of rings and we will round up to $1600 for optics and rings.

What bipod is with it? The prince bipod from Armalite is a quality rest but its not overly versitile. I think they are running a bit over $200. So, if you add all that up, you around the $5000 you are looking at so I would say ya, your in the ball park especially if the rifle is new.
Kirby Allen(50)

Allen Precision Shooting
Home of the Allen Magnum, Allen Xpress and Allen Tactical Wildcats and the Painkiller Muzzle brakes.

Farther, Faster and Flatter then ever before.

Web Page: www.apsrifles.com

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Unread 06-02-2009, 07:56 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 129
Re: Armalite 50

Thanks Kirby thats exactly what I was looking for. I just talked to a buddy that said he could get me one for 100 over his cost which is less then the 3000 price tag so I think I will do that and get a nightforce 5.5-22x50 with zerostop. If I can't get it to shoot good with reloads then I am sure I will be sending it to you to do your magic which I know you can do.

What bipod should I get for it?

Anything else you can think of I should know please just let me know.

Can't wait til that 338AM is done I am looking forward to shooting it more then the 50 .
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