Mission Specific Firearms

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This topic contains 13 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Alonso1 3 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #465

    Alonso1
    Moderator

    I’m going to do my best to not make this a OMGINGTRATS (Oh My God I’m Not Going To Read All That Stuff) post. So I’ll try to keep it short.

    Have you ever wondered what would be your pick for an end all be all SHTF rifle? I have, and to be honest I think about it quite often. There are many fine rifles out there but can I just choose just one? Well if I have the choice then the answer is no. There are many pros and cons for just about any gun you may pick as a SHTF rifle.

    Let’s start with the full blown semi-automatic Battle Rifle which is usually defined as being about a 30 caliber bullet in a 308 or 30.06.
    These rifles are great! They have a good hard hitting round that will put a zombie on his butt and chew through most barricades should the zombies take cover. I like these rifles and this would be the rifle I would choose If I were defending a position and speed and mobility were not too high on my list. Also, I would want to use a Battle Rifle if I had a clearing and I could engage zombies 400,500 and 600 yards away. Distance is your friend.

    The down side of these rifles is the weight. The M1A, M1 Garand, FN FAL, Hk 91, all weigh over 9 pounds empty.

    Imagine carrying a Battle Rifle a few miles to ambush some zombies. You know you will have plenty of ammo (you better if you are going to pick a fight)say at least 15 twenty round magazines of 30 caliber ammunition, water, a 3 day back pack…you see where I’m going? That weight adds up fast.

    Is the weight really that bad, yes! Now when I get my M1 Garand out of the safe, walk to the sofa in the living room, sit down and watch Red Dawn while holding my rifle, no the weight is not bad at all.

    Even when I carry the Garand to my vehicle, and drive to the range, look for a parking spot that’s not too far because the rifle and ammo are heavy, it’s still not that bad.

    However, if I get out of my comfort zone and consider the reality that maybe one day my plans to bug in my home or my BOL are no longer safe and I don’t have any type of transportation, would a Battle Rifle be my best choice? Worse yet, what if I am safe and I get word that someone I care about is a few miles away and they are up to their ears in zombies. I would have to move fast and the weight is sure to slow me down.

    It’s too easy to say “They can not overrun my BOL”, “I will always have some type of vehicle”. To deny the worst case scenario is just like some people not prepping because “That will never happen”.

    I definitely would want a Battle Rifle as long as I were defending but not to grab and go.

    What about a long range bolt gun?

    These are good as long as they are being deployed as they were intended…at long range. To tell you the truth, I have never studied long range shooting enough to understand the corrections I would need in order to get hits beyond a 1000 yards. I’m OK with iron sights out to 500 yards but I have never gotten into scopes much.

    I would stick to a military type bolt gun, something you can feed with stripper clips for a fast reload. I would also have the scope on a Scout type mount which is forward of the action so it does not block the stripper clip guide.

    As long as the zombies are stupid, meaning they will not advance on your position quickly, or send out flankers, I think you could pick them off all day with a good bolt gun.

    Would I like a bolt gun if the zombies were a long distance away, yep. Would I like a bolt gun if I had to grab and go? Nope. You never know what you may run into, you may need a lot of bullets really fast and you won’t get that with a bolt gun.

    Now everybody’s favorite, Carbines!

    The AR

    These are good for close and intermediate ranges and in a pinch, the AR can take you a little further.

    There are so many carbines to choose from but I’m going to stick with the AR and the AK. I’ll start with the AR first, man, there is so much you can do to one of these.

    I like the chrome lined barrels. You get a longer lasting barrel but you loose a little accuracy compared to the non chrome lined barrels, but come on! this carbine is for when the SHTF. What you have needs to last, and if you are not a competition shooter; you probably will not notice the difference in accuracy.

    An ACOG 4×32 on a flattop is my choice. The AR is a very accurate gun and if you do your part, it will get you out to 600 yards or more.

    For me, a gas impingement system. This cuts the weight down but a gas piston would not bother me either. And speaking of weight, what more could you ask for? These carbines weigh an average of 6 pounds! When I was in the Army I had 6 30 round magazines on my web gear and about another 20 magazines in my ruck sack. That’s a lot of ammo.

    The down side is the 5.56 performance beyond 200 yards is questionable. I know from experience that brush will deflect the bullet and they are not that great busting through barricades, so I hope the zombies don’t take cover. I’ve also had the wind give me a hard time while shooting at 400 yards.

    Maybe some of our Mid-East vets can chime in on what they witnessed on the 5.56 performance. I would love to hear about it.

    This carbine requires maintenance! as they all do, but my AR likes to be clean and it likes the gas rings replaced fairly often.

    Would I grab my AR and go knowing it may have to last me for the rest of my life? I plan to, but I must say the maintenance does concern me.

    The AK.

    These Carbines are inexpensive and the parts, magazines, and ammo are everywhere. You can pick up a decent one for under $500 bucks.

    This carbine requires maintenance like all others but it’s much more forgiving if it skips a bath or ten 😀

    This carbine weights about 9.5 pounds! That sucks, carrying the weight of a Battle Rifle just to launch an intermediate cartridge.

    I have not shot my AK enough to give it a fair evolution but I have read it’s solid out to 200 yards and iffy at 300 and beyond. I think it’s better than that. When I take out to the range I’ll give a full report.

    The AK’s accuracy doesn’t compare to the AR. Have you ever heard of someone winning a Camp Perry High Power match with an AK? Does anyone know where I can buy some factory 7.62×39 Match grade ammo? but the AK was not made for Matches, it was made to put a lot of hard hitting rounds down range and it does that job really good.

    Between the AR and AK; If I had to grab and go, I would pick my AR simply because I have a lot more time behind that gun than I do with an AK.

    To sum this all up:

    Fighting from a fixed position where weight, speed, and mobility is not an issue, I would be happy with any one of the listed Battle Rifle. My personal choice would be an M1A.

    Shooting zombies at long range with a bolt gun is fine as long as I can have a fast reload. A military type rifle, something that accepts stripper clips.

    For a grab and go carbine I would choose the AR because it’s light weight and very accurate.

    Alright, there is no way everyone agrees with everything I have said and if you have read this far than you must have some interest in the subject. So let’s brainstorm, ask questions, hear opinions, tell us about the gun I left out, and see if we can find that when the SHTF gun together.

    #5821

    DCortez
    Member

    Good write up and I’d have to agree.

    #5820

    TeknaBuzz
    Keymaster

    I’d have to with carbine too for a my grab & go gun and I hope to soon make that carbine a quality AR. But I’m not so sure I’d go with a AR or even a carbine rifle at all if I knew that was last and only firearm I’d have to use indefinitely. The shear amount of proper weapons maintenance associated with a AR would worry me in a PSHTF world without no backup firearm or somebody else around with a functioning firearm while I’m in the middle of cleaning mine.

    The bad news is always reported but realistically for the most part I think most soldiers will rate the M4/M16 as being a highly reliable rifle. I also think that a lot of the issues in combat are not from the rifle being clean but inserting dirty mags. I’ve heard stories of guys using the clips to make the double flip over mags that don’t fit in your pouches for faster reloads being left in the open and having issues with rifle not performing when it was needed the most. The sandbox is probably the most harsh environment you could imagine having to rely on a rifle. The sand over there isn’t anything like the sand we have here at the beach its very fine more sizable like dust but far more gritty. Deployed troops clean their rifles many times a day often extreme amount of times in between them actually being used and doing so makes the odds of it not going bang when you need it to very minimal.

    #5822

    otis302
    Member

    I have talked about my Saiga alot so what you read and are told wont do you a bit of good when your life is on the line.I took it today after iI had cleaned it and droped it in the dirt and mud and I mean coated it I took it and banged it off and it fired with out any problem 80 rds of course long term is something else, would you rather carry a weapon that weighs 6 or 7 pounds and will jam or missfire if you have to crawl through crap or one that weighs 9.5 pounds and works almost every time?

    #5823

    Alonso1
    Moderator

    @otis302 2474 wrote:

    I took it today after iI had cleaned it and droped it in the dirt and mud and I mean coated it I took it and banged it off and it fired with out any problem 80 rds of course long term is something else, would you rather carry a weapon that weighs 6 or 7 pounds and will jam or missfire if you have to crawl through crap or one that weighs 9.5 pounds and works almost every time?

    Now we are getting somewhere. Thanks for the info Otis. I’ve seen and heard the about the AK’s reliability, they are tough guns and will go “Bang” and because of that, the AK is on my short list of SHTF rifles. However, I can’t afford to treat any of my AR’s like that to see for myself. The closest thing I’ve ever done like a torture test was fire just over 3000 rounds through the gun without any maintenance, except adding lube. It took over 6 months. No stoppages of any kind, however it was no fun to clean. The rifle I used was a Colt.

    Larry Vickers is a former Delta Operator and he conducted a torture test of a Daniel Defense AR. The AR’s have come a long way…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89HEefl1KI4

    #5827

    JulioTheSavage
    Moderator

    @alonso1 2483 wrote:

    Now we are getting somewhere. Thanks for the info Otis. I’ve seen and heard the about the AK’s reliability, they are tough guns and will go “Bang” and because of that, the AK is on my short list of SHTF rifles. However, I can’t afford to treat any of my AR’s like that to see for myself. The closest thing I’ve ever done like a torture test was fire just over 3000 rounds through the gun without any maintenance, except adding lube. It took over 6 months. No stoppages of any kind, however it was no fun to clean. The rifle I used was a Colt.

    Larry Vickers is a former Delta Operator and he conducted a torture test of a Daniel Defense AR. The AR’s have come a long way…

    M4 Torture Test Promo – YouTube

    Just to add to what you said about ARs coming a long way. This is some serious torture: —S.W.A.T. MAGAZINE ? FILTHY 14 : Slip 2000 Official Blog
    Just one reason why I like BCM.

    #5829

    boisdarc
    Member

    Right now, I’m pretty far behind or in front of the 8 ball, (honestly I don’t know how to say that) as far as an AR. I know I need to just bite the bullet and start with a lower and piece it together, I just can’t see spending around 700-900 bucks to buy a complete rifle. Sometimes I see them on sale at the big stores but also justifying this with the wife aint happening either. I have a decent Bulgarian AK with a milled receiver, it has pretty heavy original wood furniture and i wouldn’t want to hump it for a forced road march. The plus side of an AK -it would probably cycle a #2 pencil if I jammed it in there, and the complete action is pretty much a twisted piece of wire pushing the hammer and gas tube. The down side, of course accuracy and weight. I would MAYBE feel shooting to 250 to 300 meter targets- but would lose at least a little faith if they were shooting back. So without an AR, I have to ride with the AK, if anyone has a good line on lowers-my ears(ok maybe eyes) are open. My long gun is a rifle I’m still working on, mauser 48 yugo action, a .308 barrel, hogue(customized to fit) overmolded stock, bipod(cheap) and no optics yet.

    #5828

    JulioTheSavage
    Moderator

    @boisdarc 14222 wrote:

    Right now, I’m pretty far behind or in front of the 8 ball, (honestly I don’t know how to say that) as far as an AR. I know I need to just bite the bullet and start with a lower and piece it together, I just can’t see spending around 700-900 bucks to buy a complete rifle. Sometimes I see them on sale at the big stores but also justifying this with the wife aint happening either. I have a decent Bulgarian AK with a milled receiver, it has pretty heavy original wood furniture and i wouldn’t want to hump it for a forced road march. The plus side of an AK -it would probably cycle a #2 pencil if I jammed it in there, and the complete action is pretty much a twisted piece of wire pushing the hammer and gas tube. The down side, of course accuracy and weight. I would MAYBE feel shooting to 250 to 300 meter targets- but would lose at least a little faith if they were shooting back. So without an AR, I have to ride with the AK, if anyone has a good line on lowers-my ears(ok maybe eyes) are open. My long gun is a rifle I’m still working on, mauser 48 yugo action, a .308 barrel, hogue(customized to fit) overmolded stock, bipod(cheap) and no optics yet.

    Palmetto State Armory usually has some lowers in stock for reasonable prices. Stripped and assembled lowers.
    Lower Receivers – Lower Parts – AR-15

    #5830

    boisdarc
    Member

    $119.00 for a naked lower is not bad, thanks.

    #5832

    Alonso1, I think you have started a conversation that will never end. My .02 cents worth is this. I have 2 favorite SHTF rifles. The first would be my Ishapore 2A1. Bolt action simple, 12 round mag, stripper clip loadable, 7.62 NATO. Second my Yugo M59/66 A1 SKS. Semi Auto, Piston driven, reliable, High capacity mags, stripper clip loadable, 7.62 x 39mm.

    #5831

    bajarider
    Member

    Great thread!

    For my .02, I’d like to be able to keep a few, just from the standpoint of being able to scavenge ammo. Knowing my luck, I’d have a .308 and only be able to find .22.

    If I was forced to choose only one, it would probably be the AR platform, just due to the fact that I should be able to find ammo easier (think of all those military checkpoints that get overrun by zombies). I really like the AK, just for durability, and the fact that if I could shoot a Zombie at 2-600 yards it might be smarter to just keep moving instead of drawing them all to me.

    If Atlanta gets zombified, I plan on getting far from the city, hunkering down for a while then hopefully making it to Ft. Benning. There ought to be some hardware left laying around to choose from.

    #5824

    Andrew
    Moderator

    I think most folks settle on either the AR or AK platform. A big consideration is availability of repair parts and folks that are knowledgeable on how to repair the weapon. Both the AK and AR have proliferated most gun owners arsenal so access to either repair parts or knowledgeable individuals should be easy.

    #5825

    Andrew
    Moderator

    Since posting I have acquired a Savage 270 and Remington 783 .308 hunting rifle for long range shooting. Unfortunately I have not practiced much with the .270 and I am still searching optics for the .308. It is looking like the optic for the Remington will cost as much as the rifle.

    #5826

    Andrew
    Moderator

    I ended up settling on the AR-10 w/ 20″ Barrel as a good compromise. It is not great at any one thing but can be used as a CQB, long and mid distance rifle.

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