AK or AR for SBR Build?

Discussion in 'NFA Talk' started by ZLujan, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. ZLujan

    ZLujan XDTalk Newbie

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    I am looking at building an SBR, but I'm conflicted. I cannot decide if I want to just go the AR route (it's easy to buy the upper and slap it on a lower) or if I want to run an AK. I love AK's but, as of recently, I am very interested in AR's as well, especially with the .300 AAC Blackout or the .50 Beowolf or .458 SOCOM, or any of the many other calibers.

    If I go the AK route, it will be a 7.62x39 with a 10" barrel, unless I can find one shorter, and have a wire folding stock that I am thinking I may design and build myself. Additionally, I am probably going to suppress the rifle after I get the SBR stamp on it, whether it's AK or AR. And yes, I know that the AR offers calibers that are better for suppression.

    Now, if I go the other way and get an AR SBR, I will be running a 5-10" upper on a spikes lower. I am unsure of what caliber to go with, but I am really leaning .300 AAC because I can suppress it and make it really quiet compared to 5.56 or 7.62x39. But I'm still not sure if I want to go this route.

    Opinions would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. GAGTO

    GAGTO XDTalk Member

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    AR, you can own multiple uppers and use the same lower. I'm currently waiting on my Form 4. It will be mostly 9mm 5 inch with a can, but I also have a .22 pistol. If I want to swap it, I can. I'm also considering an 8 inch 300 Blackout for a little more punch.
     
  3. John A.

    John A. XDTalk 2K Member

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    SBR AK's are more rare, and harder to do, and thus worth more resale in the long run because of it.

    AR's are a lot more versatile and a plethora of calibers by simply changing uppers and mags as GAGTO has already stated.
     
  4. ZLujan

    ZLujan XDTalk Newbie

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    I'm thinking AR will be the way to go. I am more familiar with AK's so that's why I was considering the shorty AK. What caliber would be the best for a short AR? I still want it useful out to 200 yards or so, but also good in close. When being used past 100 yards I doubt that I will be wanting or needing suppression. So for the initial build, would it be best to go short 5.56? 6.5 Grendel? 6.8SPC? There are TOO many options with AR's lol.
     
  5. ZLujan

    ZLujan XDTalk Newbie

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    Also, might it be worth it to do an AK and an AR build?
     
  6. John A.

    John A. XDTalk 2K Member

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    If you dont' have an AR, I'd start with a 5.56 upper so you can have fairly inexpensive ammo and enough ooomph for 200 yards even out of the shorter barrel.

    I'd probably skip the 6.5 grendel and 6.8 spc for short barrel use and consider an 5 to 8 inch barrelled 9mm upper with a suppressor for close in work when you're wanting to be quiet. It's really hard to beat a 9mm suppressed carbine using 147 gr bullets. They sound like a paintball gun in person.

    Others would recommend the 300 blackout for short and suppressed and is not entirely out of the question for 200 yards but ammo availability is still not even close to how much 9mm is usually out there at any given time.

    You could also of course buy a 22LR short upper for even more inexpensive weekend plinking and use a take apart 9mm silencer on it so you can clean it afterwards.

    Or you could buy 1 of every caliber upper and use them all on your registered lower.

    Just remember, the lower would be the SBR whether you were using a 24 inch barreled upper, or a 4 inch barreled upper, so all SBR transportation and handling laws still apply to it no matter which upper you had on it.

    I guess the point I am trying to make is even if you SBR'd a lower, you can have any other caliber or barrel length attached, but even if it was wearing a regular length upper, it's still classified as an SBR in the eyes of the law.
     
  7. Mike Russell

    Mike Russell XDTalk 500 Member

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    Do an AR first...then get an AK. ;):D
     
  8. CheaperThanDirt

    CheaperThanDirt Official Site Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    Get both!

    But an AR first because you can do anything with it.
     
  9. Rob2

    Rob2 XDTalk 1K Member

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    Suppress it? Pssshhhh! Get the smallest barrel, and highest pressure round you can find, then stick the nastiest most un-necessarily obnoxiusly loud muzzle break you can find, then shoot that sucker at an indoor range or a covered outdoor range and when people ask "what the **** are you shooting?" you can tell them "dynamite rounds" or "chuck norris select"
     
  10. ZLujan

    ZLujan XDTalk Newbie

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    John, the every caliber thing is why I was thinking an AR would be best, despite how much I love AK's lol. I could do the 9mm upper just because I shoot lots of 9mm as it is and having a suppressor in 9mm would be a lot of fun with more than just one gun. I completely forgot about 9mm uppers. I guess I was thinking more along the lines of full powered rifle calibers to start. Do you know what a 9mm could reach out to effectively out of say an 8" or maybe a 9" barrel?

    Rob, funny, but probably not something that I would appreciate beings I shoot on my own property and in the mountains at a friends place.

    As for it being an SBR no matter what, that's fine by me. I'll probably take full advantage and run only short uppers on it. Thanks for the input guys, I really appreciate it.

    Any thoughts on caliber for the AK build?

    Oh, and do you need a full twist in the rifling for accuracy or anything? Is there anything I will need to really watch for with either build?
     
  11. agould27

    agould27 XDTalk 1K Member

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    My experience is gonna say AR. The ak will have a lot of recoil and muzzle blast. They are much less accurate than the AR platform. With the right muzzle brake the recoil of the AR will be close to a 22 magnum. Will be a lighter rifle and in my opinion stocks and accessories are easier and nicer for the AR.
     
  12. John A.

    John A. XDTalk 2K Member

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    I like 9mm carbines, though I admit I don't currently have one in an AR at the moment.

    8 or 9 inch barrel will easily shoot 100 yards and a little farther no problem. I have a Lage slowfire upper for my M10A1 and it can ring a gong pretty easily, and even the 5.5 inch barrel on the MP5K will do 100 yards when I do my part.

    As for things to watch with a 9mm AR, make sure the hammer isn't notched on top. There are a ton of subjects on the specifics scattered all across the internet, but having a flat face (un notched) hammer is definately one of those. Some people ramp the bolt and install a heavier than average hammer spring and H3 buffer and KNS pins as well.

    But that is the bulk of it.
     
  13. ZLujan

    ZLujan XDTalk Newbie

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    Awesome, thank you John, I'm currently looking for three lowers now. One will be the SBR, the other a 20-22" rifle and the final one would be a 16" carbine. Cannot wait to get this build going. Again, thank you for your input. I'm excited again to get a new firearm (haven't felt this way since I bought my XDm lol).

    I think I will go with multi-cal lowers and run a a 5.56 for now and then, as I get more money, I will pick up a 9mm upper, .300 blackout upper and then a start gathering suppressors. I am truly giddy about all this, it's going to be awesome!
     
  14. John A.

    John A. XDTalk 2K Member

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    Nothing wrong with having 3 complete guns, but just letting you know that you are allowed to put a 16 or 20 inch barrel upper on a sbr registered lower too as long as it is not a "permanent" change.

    All NFA laws still apply though even with the title 1 uppers though because the lower receiver is the registered item.

    No loaning it out to your buds if you're not there with the gun, crossing state lines requires notifiying the NFA branch, etc.

    Just sayin' that you don't necessarily have to buy 3 different lowers unless you just wanted to.

    Also, some 9mm silencers are also compatible with subsonic 300 blackout and 22LR rounds too. So then you'd only need to buy 1 suppressor to use on multiple host uppers to save even more money and time.

    Check out the Thompson Machine ISIS-2 as an example:
    http://www.thompsonmachine.net/?page_id=99
     
  15. PolsVoice

    PolsVoice XDTalk 1K Member

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    [​IMG]

    10.5" barrell, underfolding stock and in 7.62x39. I love this gun.



    [​IMG]

    8.5" barrell. 5.45x39. There are some in 7.62x39, too.


    [/QUOTE]

    AR: 1
    AK: 0

    AR: 1
    AK: 1

    I would recommend not doing this. The velocity loss of 5.56 out of a short barrel takes ball ammo below the speed it needs to fragment. Other bullet technologies would work, but are significantly more expensive. 9mm and other calibers, however sound like they would be great for your purposes.

    7.62x39 is still an effective SBR caliber as it can still turn a cinderblock into a shrapnel grenade. It's cousin, 5.45x39 is wonderful, too.


    AR: 2
    AK: 1


    Other thoughts:

    Suppressing any AK is a pain in the butt, not just because the action is so loud, but a lot of AKs have non-concentric threads which can lead to baffle strikes. The can get quieter, but can never compare to an AR

    aaaaand here's a pic of what my SBR AK looks like.

    [​IMG]

    10.5" barrel with a triangle side-folding stock. Built from an Yugoslavian M92 kit in 2008
     

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