My cousin recently succumbed to the 2013 Fever and bought an AR-15, against my advice, at the peak of the frenzy. Thinking that “An AR is an AR”, he brought home a Moores Machine Company AR-15 from the Sillman Cartridge company, fully dressed in UTG and Chinese accessories. This rifle cost him about $1300 out the door, but good news is the retailer was willing to take the rifle back, unfired, and sell him the S&W M&P-15 I told him to buy in the first place.
I did get him to bring it to the club so I could take some pictures and have a look at it. What I found was a substandard piece of crap that was totally unsuitable for even casual use. The machining on critical parts was haphazard and rough, with numerous obvious faults.
Anyway, let’s have a look:
My nontechnical recommendation: Do not buy at any price. I would be surprised if this rifle functioned for an entire magazine, and a quick google search seems to back this up. As I mentioned we didn’t shoot the rifle, but even dry manipulations like pulling the charging handle and moving the safety lever were rough and gritty, like moving two sanding blocks against each other. This despite the bolt group literally dripping in a smelly, goopy lubricant.
Folks, AR is not an AR, unless it’s a Colt, S&W M&P, Noveske, Daniel Defense, BCM, or LMT. Other brands like Spike’s, Bushmaster, Armalite, DPMS, RRA, Palmetto State Armory and CMMG can be made to work, or will work fine for short periods, but why bother when they cost about the same as a real AR? Then we have the bottom of the barrel, like MMC, Olympic Arms, Model 1, M&A and pretty much everyone else, which are totally unusable out of the box and even worse, unsuitable for a base to build upon. Sometimes buying a lower quality model as a base for future modifications can make some sense, but the heart of an AR is the barrel, gas system, bolt and carrier. Why on earth would you skimp there?
Buy quality and cry once. Buy crap and it’ll haunt you until you give up and sell it. And if you haven’t heard of the AR company, there’s probably a reason for that.