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Thread: Smith and Wesson M&P 15 Sport?

  1. #1
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    Smith and Wesson M&P 15 Sport?

    Just curious... anyone have experience with the Smith and Wesson M&P 15 sport rifle? I've been looking into getting my first AR-15 and have done a ton of reading. I have a little experience shooting my buddy's AR (I believe it's a Colt -- it's his state trooper issue weapon). From the first time I shot it, I was in love. Of course, I would go with one of the top shelf guns if money wasn't an object, but since I'm not filthy rich, it is. I have no real need for this rifle other than maybe self defense and fun (i.e., no competition, police work, etc.).

    For those not familiar with this paricular model, it's the entry-level black rifle for S&W. As far as I can gather, they were able to keep the price low (~$700) by simply eliminating/substituting some of the more expensive features that the casual shooter doesn't really need anyway. It doesn't have a forward assist (FA), dust cover, or chrome-lined barrel.

    At this point, let me tell you my line of thinking, and then I would love to hear from the more experienced shooters on this forum whether they think I'm on the right track... or if I have some serious misunderstandings. It seems like I don't really need the forward assist unless I was going to be shooting full-auto and getting the thing really hot. And I've read that the FA actually often gets the casual shooter in trouble by forcing the gun into battery when it shouldn't be forced. As far as the dust cover goes, I guess if I got into a SHTF event and began using it as a true fighting rifle, then I may wish that I had it. But, aside from that situation, I foresee myself going to the range with it for some enjoyment shooting, keeping it ready as my go-to gun for home defense, and possibly shooting the occasional varmint. I just can't see spending the extra cash for something that I don't think I need -- none of my other guns have it, and I've never had an issue. As for the chrome-lined barrel... I will never run 1000 rounds through it without cleaning it (except for maybe a SHTF event), and I would rather have the added accuracy of that comes with staying away from chrome.

    AGAIN, these opinions are based on the info that I have read and people that I have talked to thus far. I may be COMPLETELY wrong on this, and if so, by all means let me know. Even at the $700 dollar mark, it's a lot of money to spend to end up regretting my decision. I'm not necessarily sold on the M&P 15 sport, but it seemed to be what best fits my needs/desires when I do an honest evaluation of how I intend to use it. If anyone has another gun in mind that would be a good fit, I would love to hear about it. Honestly, if the gun cost much more than this, I would probably just buy some different toys instead. I don't need one that badly.

    Anyway, sorry to be so long-winded. Just wanted to paint the whole picture. Thanks for any advice you have to offer.
    Q: Why do you carry a gun?
    A: Itís much lighter than carrying a police officer

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    "He who goes unarmed in paradise had better make darned sure that's really where he is."
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  2. #2
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    By reading your post I would say:
    1. You havent convinced yourself on actually getting an AR.
    2. You sound as if you are settling because of price.
    3. If #2 is correct check out Del-Ton AR's, they are about that price range and have all those features you say you dont need.
    4. It is a little more expensive than a Del-Ton or a Palmetto Armory but I just picked up a Windham Weaponry M4 clone and at aboit 150 more dollars it is about 800 more dollars worth of gun. I know you said you didnt want to spend more, but why be cheap on something like this.
    5. If you feel like you really dont have a need for it, use that $700 to get some other things you may have a need for. I am a firm believer in not having firearms that I have no need for. All of mine serve at least 1 real world purpose.
    The forward assist is a great feature, you dont need it till you need it.
    The chrome lined barrel is nice but not needed
    The dust cover IMO is the most important feature of these three you listed, in the long run you will be glad you have it, or wishing that you did.
    Just my .02
    oso likes this.

    The only easy day, was yesterday!

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  3. #3
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    Thanks for the ideas. I will definitely look into those as options.

    I am getting ready to sell a car that I had just for fun, but I rarely get to drive it anymore. I want to free up some of that money for toys that go bang, and then I'll use most of the cash for the kids' future college tuition/savings/etc. I guess the real world application of this AR would be home defense. I have a 12ga. as my go-to gun right now (and a couple handguns), but it's a bit much for my wife to handle, so she's stuck with handguns, which she also doesn't feel comfortable shooting yet (I talk more about this in my new member intro... she has interest in learning, it just never seems to work out with kids and all). I also wouldn't mind having a lot of extra rounds available in the mag if it was ever needed. For me personally, I guess the AR would be primarily a "just for fun" gun, with the home defense role as an added bonus (since I'm fairly confident with my shotgun option). But for my wife, I think the potency, light recoil, adjustability, etc. would be perfect for her. Don't get me wrong, I want an AR in the worst way and have for a while. I love shooting that platform every time I get the chance and definitely see the benefits of it in a real world setting. All of my guns up to this point have been purchased with a justifiable purpose in mind (hunting, home defense, etc.). After selling the car, I will have for the first time a few thousand to buy a couple guns, a reloading set-up, and quite a bit of ammo that I just couldn't/wouldn't spend the money on before.

    A couple follow-up questions to you since (if I remember correctly from your previous posts in other threads) you have quite a bit of combat experience with an AR:
    1.) What is the advantage of a FA over the notch on the bolt that you can help the bolt forward with? I guess the reason I ask is because I don't have any idea how much force would be necessary to get the gun into battery in that kind of situation.
    2.) Why do you say that the dust cover is the most important feature from my earlier list? Again, this comes from my lack of knowledge/experience... not trying to be a smartass or anything.

    Thanks for the info. I really appreciate it. I can always count on honest answers from the members here. I get the feeling that in a lot of other forums, if you're not shooting brand X, they think it must be junk. It's nice to hear some other points of view too.
    Q: Why do you carry a gun?
    A: Itís much lighter than carrying a police officer

    Author unknown

    "He who goes unarmed in paradise had better make darned sure that's really where he is."
    Author unknown

    "Diapers and politicians both need to be changed often; and for the same reason."
    ​Author unknown

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    I have an M&P 15 and am very happy with it. I got a good deal on 1000 rounds of Russian steel cased ammo and after firing about half of it am yet to have any failures.

    I've never used a FA or dust cover, so will defer to the more experienced.

    For the money, I'm a happy man.
    I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith4001r View Post
    I have an M&P 15 and am very happy with it. I got a good deal on 1000 rounds of Russian steel cased ammo and after firing about half of it am yet to have any failures.

    I've never used a FA or dust cover, so will defer to the more experienced.

    For the money, I'm a happy man.

    Since you said that you have never used a FA or dust cover, I assume you have a "Sport" model? Either way, that's good to hear. I've heard nothing but good about the entire M&P 15 line from those who have actually used/own them.
    Q: Why do you carry a gun?
    A: Itís much lighter than carrying a police officer

    Author unknown

    "He who goes unarmed in paradise had better make darned sure that's really where he is."
    Author unknown

    "Diapers and politicians both need to be changed often; and for the same reason."
    ​Author unknown

  6. #6
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    Let me first say that after rereading my initial post I didnt mean to sound arrogant or like I was the tell all end all authority.
    I do have combat experience, just with the select fire models of course. With that said the FA only takes a slight tap to make sure the bolt carrier is fully seated, I have have been in a situation where the FA may have saved one of my team members. If the enemy would have hit his mark, we will never know but without the FA I would have had to pull my charging handle which would have taken signifigantly longer. Again you only need it when you need it.

    The dust cover in my opinion is an essential part of any AR system that may be deployed to save/defend a life. Dust and debris are bad. Oil and grease tend to attra t dust and dirt. I whole heartedly believe that the dust cover engaged while the weapon is stored helps keep all that dust and grime out of the bolt carrier and firing pin and other integral parts that dont like dust or dust build up. To me it is a very viable feature. The dust cover will release when you pull the charging handle rearward, with or without rounds or even a mag in the weapon. I just really really dont like dust inside my rifle.

    One other thing I would like to mention is when you do select your AR, and I believe you will purchase an AR make sure you get something stamped with the 5.56 stamp. That way you can safely fire .223 as well as 5.56. A rifle marked .223 will shoot a 5.56, but may not be designed to handle the higher pressures of the 5.56 round. I have seen a .223 rifle split the barrel at the receiver end firing 5.56 ammo. The rifle maker did repair the rifle but it cost because the use of improper ammunition. This may cause a bit of a ruckus with some folks as I do know people that shoot 5.56 in their .223 designated rifles without a problem, I just wouldnt risk it.

    Anyway you choose to go, with todays technology you most likely be buying a quality rifle. A rifle that will serve you well. Good luck with your search and if I can help you with anything else please ask.
    Last edited by IDLE; 04-26-2012 at 08:31 PM.
    PCS01 likes this.

    The only easy day, was yesterday!

    GUNS: My right to own them is what protects your right to express that I can't.
    Get off your @$$ and vote NOBAMA in 2012!
    M1911A1: The original point and click application.

  7. #7
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    You could also look into the Bushmaster AR's. I have one of their Carbon-15's and I love it. Normally retails for $699 and comes with the FA, dust cover and chrome-lined barrel and is chambered to shoot the 5.56 unlike some others
    Taurus PT1911 9mm
    Taurus 24/7 Pro DS .45ACP
    Ruger Blackhawk .357 Mag
    FIE F15 .22LR
    Bushmaster Carbon-15 .223/5.56 NATO
    Savage Mod 64F .22LR
    Glenfield Mod 60 .22LR
    Universal M1 Carbine .30 cal
    Tikka M695 7mm Rem Mag
    Maverick 88 12 ga

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    I like mine the only thing I did not like about it was the fore grip. There is no heat shield and it would get hot very quickly. I got a quad rail for around $40 and rail covers from Pay it Forward on TA (Thank You Very Much) and it is good.
    Always remember to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle your targets
    Reduce them to shreds
    Reuse shoot them more than once
    Recycle whatever is left over

    24/7 Pro C 40 S&W PT1911 45 ACP 738 TCP 380 ACP PT111 SS Model 66 .357
    About me - I take very little seriously especially myself.

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    Mines been great and I'm considering getting another.
    Very accurate with American Eagle 55 grain.
    I love my job, I love my job, I love my job.
    Ah crap, its not working.
    Again.

  10. #10
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    Idle,

    I didn't take your first post as being arrogant at all. No worries. Thanks for all of the information and for your service. Both of the features make a lot of sense (even for users like me) the way you explained them. Definitely something to reconsider. I had already decided to go with 5.56 stamped rifles only. I know that most of the time the 5.56 in a .223 stamped rifle would be fine, but I would much rather error on the side of caution.

    To the other people who posted, thanks to you also. A lot of good food for thought.

    I have already found a fairly inexpensive hand guard from Magpul (HAND GUARDS – AR15/M16 Type Rifles - MOEģ Hand Guard, Carbine-Length – AR15/M16) that I was planning to replace the OEM with. Basically, I just want to add a light for home defense. Does anybody know if this model of hand guard is considered to be a "heat shielded" version? The website says it's "Reinforced, heat-resistant polymer construction," but I don't really know what that means. I've considered doing a quad rail, but I think a lot of that would probably be wasted on me. I don't plan to go crazy adding "tacti-cool" stuff, but maybe that's the way to get a more heat-shielded version... don't really know. Maybe I would find uses for the extra mounting space quicker than I think.
    Q: Why do you carry a gun?
    A: Itís much lighter than carrying a police officer

    Author unknown

    "He who goes unarmed in paradise had better make darned sure that's really where he is."
    Author unknown

    "Diapers and politicians both need to be changed often; and for the same reason."
    ​Author unknown

 

 
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