AR, M16 Rifles


Active Member
Nov 26, 2001
Jackson, Wyoming
I am interested in getting an AR, M16 type varmint rifle to add to my collection. Does anyone have an opinion on the best rifle manufacturer, factory and custom?

Who makes the best barrel specific to these rifles.

Also please tell me about any web sites such as this dealing primarily with this rifle type?
Answers to your questions will depend on what you plan on doing with the rifle, or maybe which model you are looking at.
Rock River Arms and Bushmaster are two you for sure can't go wrong with.
Try here or here for some nice, custom and semi-custom guns from a top name 'smith at reasonable prices.

As far as barrels... they are about like any other gun, in that there isn't a 'best' one for them. Lots of HP shooters love Kreigers, others think Pac-Nors are just fine, and most factory guns shoot some pretty darn small groups w/ inexpensive Wilson barrels.

I'd suggest you head on over to Sinclair International and order some of their books on ARs. One thing to keep in mind, relative to some of the comments on Colts in those books: By and large they are awfully expensive to build a gun off of compared to the high quality options from Bushmaster and Rock River available these days. By the time you fork over the $$$ for a stock rifle from Colt, or some of the whiz-bang stuff from places like Fulton Armory, JP Enterprises, you could easily pay for a space-gun match upper from somebody like John Holliger @ White Oak Armament, buy a RRA lower separately and be done for under $900, and it'd be pretty much top-shelf.


I have a Rock River Arms (RRA) Varmint rig with the 24" barrel. She will shoot 1.5-2 inches at 300 meters all day long with 75gr matchkings (provided there is no wind). Very fun to shoot groundhogs with.

I have a couple AR's I had built for varmint hunting. One from Compass Lake Engineering and another from Accurracy Speaks (Derrick is in Iraq now). Satisfied with the Krieger barrels on both. Was unable to get the original Wilson barrels to shoot to my satisfaction but some people can. Just ordered a 6.5 Grendle from Alexander Arms.
I have a 9 twist 26" Shilen on a Bushmaster lower in .223 AI. The 70 JLK, and 75 A-Max shoot <.5" day to day. The rig was built by Lee Mosher of Insight Shooting Systems, Inc., but he's a little more expensive than avg. so i hear. Check out I've been hearing a lot of great things recently about Jeff Lawrence barrels @ [email protected] (e-mail only).
I second the Rock River Arms. I have the 20" varminter with the Burris Ballistic plex and I love it for up to 400 yards. I also have the National Match Entry Tactical M4 with an EOTech 552, but that's for plinking and home defense. Beware of mounting the scope directly on the A4 rail, though. I had to get an aftermarket rail from GG&G ( called the GS1-Fire Rail for my rings to be far enough in front to give me proper eye relief. I ordered Burris Signature medium rings and the scope doesn't clear by much, but the cheekweld is perfect. I'm going to try to attach a pic.


Varminter pic

Both ARs

[ 02-26-2004: Message edited by: jnolaniv ]
I have a RRA Varminter in a 24" bbl. one advantage with Rock River is that they are the only manufacturer that offers a 1-12 twist. This is
the most accurate out of the box rifle I've every owned. It shoots Black Hills blue box (recommended by RRA) into tiny groups.. When I
go praire dogging I just buy a bunch and have at it
I fully recommend their rifles. P.S. That is Black Hills 50gr. V-Max.
I have a 6724 flat top Colt. This gun has a 24" stainless barrel and shoots like a dream
with me only adding a JP enterprises trigger.
I hear they come with a better trigger out of the box now though!!!
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