Gun talk... looking for a .308 semi-auto rifle

Anyone have any suggestions? I’ve got an AR but want a more powerful rifle. I’m not really a gun person… so maybe an AK-47 would be enough? AR-10? I’ve been looking at everything up to Barrett REC-10 and FN Scar 17s. Mostly for self defense and I might take up hunting or target shooting with it someday. Price limit, like $4k max.

My younger son knows guns fairly well. I’ll ask him and get back to you.

His first question: where do you live (which state)?

There is a 7.62mm version of the AR-15. I’d start with that.

Edit - yes, it’s the AR-10. Same rifle as AR-15, just larger caliber.

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Hmm… it looks like a can just buy a new upper? I need to look into that.

Here’s my son talking (because I don’t know any of this stuff):

AR-10s are excellent for 7.62 NATO/.308s (make sure your barrel is rated for .308 if you’re going to use both cartridges). However, if you’re looking for an excellent well-rounded rifle, I’d recommend one chambered in .300BLK. This affords several advantages: It’s predominantly just subsonic (although you can find supersonic rounds if you need to push out the range a bit farther); You can use the same mags as your AR-15, but you MUST label them with the ammo they contain (as a former armorer, I’ve seen what happens to rifles when the wrong caliber goes through a smaller barrel… It isn’t pretty); you have the stopping power of a 30 caliber, but in a more compact frame so it’s ideal for hunting; and it’s a good competition round if you’re looking to do run-n-gun events.

If you’re intent on getting a custom rifle, the very best ones I’ve seen are made by the folks at Sons of Liberty GunWorks in San Antonio, TX. I personally know the owners, Kyle Grothues and Mike Mihalski. They have pre-made rifle packages and ones you can custom order on their website. You’ll need to ensure that they can ship to your local FFL Dealer and comply with your state’s laws. Notably, they will NOT ship to CA, MA, NY, NJ or IL. Possibly several other states as well.

If you have any other questions for him, I’ll ask him to reply here.

For a multipurpose rifle, I really like the bullpup design, which reduces overall length while retaining long(ish) distance accuracy. One of my buddies has a tricked out Tavor, and it’s a blast to shoot.

However, if personal/home defense is your primary purpose, I prefer systems with shorter barrels. A shorter barrel can reduce the amount of time it takes to get on target and reduce the likelihood of revealing your position by sticking the barrel out in a doorway or some such. PDW style weapons are good for this. To this end, Sig Sauer makes the MCX in .300 blk. The .300 paired with a Sig suppressor is pretty dang nice. Or, keeping with the 7.62 theme, Maxim Defense makes its 505 in 7.62x39 (.308 / 7.62 NATO is 7.62x51, so you would not be able to use the same ammunition as the Tavor).

The “stock” on these PDWs is foldable (for federal gun laws purposes, it’s technically called a brace), which makes them, well… I haven’t measured one, but really dang short. This is interesting IMO because the unfolded length is around 24 inches, while the Tavor is 26 inches. An AR10 with fully extended folding stock and 16-18 inch barrel will be about 36 inches. With stock collapsed, about 30 inches.

If you’re going to use it for home defense (aka use it against humans), why not a .223?

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You always hear about shotguns for home defense and I even have one. I was thinking…I’ve never shot one inside without earpro. I wonder if it would really f me up.

Probably not as bad as it would f the other guy up.

Dayum boys, I’ve taken note never to break into one of your houses. What ever happened to a good ol fashioned baseball bat?

Unlikely I’d end up using a firearm anyway. I’d probably just turn on the electric floors.

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I have a tavor and love it for obstacle shooting but for self defense there is nothing better than a shotgun.

You know they make AR-10’s right? FN-SCAR 17 is nice, I’m more partial to the Scar 20 given some of the weight savings over a traditional longer marksman AR-10. If you do go the AR-10 route consider a Daniels Defense, I’ve got a mini locker of DD’s (all AR15 variants, Dad has DD AR10) and am a big fan.

Also, I would strongly STRONGLY advise against the 300 BLK unless you have goals to silence it. Otherwise you’re buying a niche and expensive ammo for a bullet that’s main attribute is to be able to shoot well subsonically in the event of silencing. Very subpar.

Last comment, often AR-10’s are built on burlier parts, including lowers just given the increased shock so my personal vote would be to buy a complete rifle although I’m sure like 50 people would come out of the woodwork on a gun site to tell me why that’s unnecessary.

Is this a long range or short rifle? Also have you considered KAC? Super expensive though and mostly worth if if your’e going long.

Remember too, that .30 caliber bullets can go through walls, which may have unintended consequences. That’s a lot less likely with a .223

I mean a 223 will go through walls and the neighbors walls if it doesn’t hit a stud.

Also don’t forget the HK 308 rifle. But also strong vote against the AK, they have their supporters, but those guns are sh*t if you can afford anything better.

I tried to stay within the parameters of the OP, but if we’re talking shotguns, the Shockwave is a beast. Just not the one with the dumbass pump handle

I have a shockwave. Shotguns are great for home defense but saying they’re better or the best is probably overplaying it. I prefer a stock for real use.

Re: AK vs. AR - the AR rifles will have longer range and more accuracy. They’re a much more precise instrument. However, they are more prone to jamming when you get them dirty. The AK-47 is built to take a beating. You can drag it through the mud, sand, and run it over with a tank, and it will still fire.