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So, I can buy a S/A Scout or Loaded model M1A for $1500-ish and have a pretty decent rifle.

How much am I gaining from a custom LRB build? I like the m25 receiver, that gives the ability to mount a scope without fussing with the silly mounts. Heavy kreiger barrel and some other upgrades that end up costing near $3k... What am I really getting for my EXTRA $1500?

Those of you who have owned/fired both, would you spend the extra $1500 and why?
 

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Depends on what kind of shooting you want it for. Battle rifle? CQB/brush? Competition?

If you go with LRB you'll get your $$$ worth, just expect it to take them a while to get your rifle built. SAI's are all over the map quality-wise. Older usually means more USGI parts. But you'll still want the opportunity to inspect it for yourself.
 

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Depends on what kind of shooting you want it for. Battle rifle? CQB/brush? Competition?

If you go with LRB you'll get your $$$ worth, just expect it to take them a while to get your rifle built. SAI's are all over the map quality-wise. Older usually means more USGI parts. But you'll still want the opportunity to inspect it for yourself.
Ill second that! Get the LRB. Its hammer forged quality made M14 receiver goodness, as opposed to who knows what they are doing at Springfield.....
 

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This is the dilemma that I have been facing for the past weeks and I made the decision today after reading info posted on this forum. Go to the search function at the top and query LRB. It should help you make your choice.
 

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I'm certain that LRB makes a fine rifle. But Springfield has built over one hundred times as many rifles as LRB. A Springfield survey for problems was just done on the forum, do a search for it. Springfield builds a good rifle for the money and you can readily make it even better after you own one. I like Springfield's lifetime full warranty as opposed to one year. I also like being able to buy almost 4,000 rounds of ammo on the price difference!
 

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One cliche that has always held true regardless of whether I am purchasing firearms, optics, ammo, cars, or electronics:

"You get what you pay for"

Anytime I have tried to save money on one of the above type items, I'm invariably disappointed, have to sell it, and buy what I should have in the first place. This process always winds up costing me more than had I purchased what I really wanted in the first place. I have finally learned this lesson, I save my money, and buy right the first time.

That said. About 7 years ago I wanted an LRB, but decided to save money and bought an M1A. I had a host of problems with it. After several trips back to Springfield and even if they replaced what they called a "soft receiver" it still never functioned properly.

I then bought what I wanted in the first place...an LRB...4,000 flawless rounds through it. Then I bought another LRB and have 2,000 flawless rounds through it. Neither have had a single malfunction or hiccup. But that's that's what I would expect from a rifle built in a small family owned shop that uses the best parts and charges premium prices. As I said "you get what you pay for".

An M14 is not a modular rifle like an AR15. Building one properly is an art. Mass producing them on an assembly line using cast parts sourced overseas is bound to lead to rifles going out the door with problems.
 

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I'm with High Hat on going with Springfield. This is frag Springfield day. You can get a good Springfield and buy a bunch of ammo with the money you save. If some thing happens, you have a life time warranty. I had to use it, the standard I've had for ten years broke a hammer hook. Called them they emailed a mailing label. It was back in two weeks. OK be warned it doesn't stop at one.
 

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So, I can buy a S/A Scout or Loaded model M1A for $1500-ish and have a pretty decent rifle.

How much am I gaining from a custom LRB build? I like the m25 receiver, that gives the ability to mount a scope without fussing with the silly mounts. Heavy kreiger barrel and some other upgrades that end up costing near $3k... What am I really getting for my EXTRA $1500?

Those of you who have owned/fired both, would you spend the extra $1500 and why?
SAI and a bunch of ammo all the way. A $3k LRB is not an M14 platform entry level rifle. I'm not knocking LRB. I'm sure they make a fine rifle, and I intend to have them start building me an 18" Scout-style rifle sometime in 2011.. or I'll start building myself with the upcoming group buy, if the price is right.

I have two SAI's: a SOCOM and a Loaded. The only reason I am not looking at SAI for an 18" Scout, is this:

Its all about mysticism and metallurgy. Guys who drop the money on an LRB want mil-spec forged components through and through, for the principle of it. If you look, some guys here scour and scrounge to find all TRW or Winchester USGI parts in order to assemble a rifle as close as possible to a true M14, for the mystique of getting closer to that grand old girl.

Simply the difference is like holding a genuine Colt Peacemaker in your hand, or a modern reproduction. There is a mystique, and some real metallurgical reasons, for having as many real USGI parts as you can get. The mystique is what most guys REALLY pay for, I reckon. The metallurgy is great and all - but lets face it - few, if any, have the money to spend on ammo that would be needed to shoot out a SAI receiver.
 

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You get what you pay for. The problem is you have to pay for it. For me a custom LRB is not anywhere near being an option. If you have that kind of disposable income the LRB route is probably going to get you the best rifle available.
 

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There really is more to building a nice m1a than what brand reciever you use. I have built 3 complete rifles using cast Fulton recievers while waiting on an m25 LRB. I wish you could hold them and shoot them so you could see for yourself how different each one is.
For me the its the scope mount that makes it worth the money and the wait. I really don't understand why another manufacturer doesn't make something that competes with this. As far as being able to afford it; I drive a $200 '94 Mitsibishi and buy most of my clothes at yard sales. I support my habit with money from "side jobs" mostly.
 

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If you really want optics the LRB M25 takes it hands down. That's what made me decide to part out my first rifle and go to an LRB receiver. I got it back when they were first released and cost me $819. Sadlak and SEI scope mounts were going for about $250 back then, that means the receiver with a solid mount was $569 in my eyes. SA Inc. receivers were $500 at the time I think, Fulton receivers were about $400, Armscorp about the same... So about a $70 to $170 price difference... Not having to deal with installing a scope mount: Priceless.
 

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My SA cost $1200 and after shooting it for awhile I replaced some parts( oprod spring guide and gas piston) with one's from Sadlak I also put a Sadlak alum mount on it, the reason for the part replacement was not due to parts failing I just did some reading on these parts and had some extra $$ plus it allowed me to keep the original's for spares, I also shimmed the GC.
This rifle is all original sitting in a fiberglass stock and has had various types of ammo thru it including milsurp stuff even the crap from India and has never failed other than a handful of stovepipes over the past several years. I am quite sure the LRB's, Fulton Armory and various others do produce a super quality rifle that is well worth the money but I am quite pleased with what I have, I am quite sure it will never shoot as well as those hand assembled match quality one's but I went into it with the thought that it's a battle rifle design with battle rifle accuracy so if I can hold a 2" group or better at 100 yrds with my handloads and get 100% reliability I will be pleased.
 

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Buy the Springfield M1A and spend the rest of your money
on magazines and ammo.

I'm convinced that the USGI parts vs Commercial parts argument is a moot point
because of the superiority of modern manufacturing methods,
and more than a few USGI parts are just reparked worn out pieces of junk dredged up from
some dump somewhere.

Remember, they quit making USGI parts over 40 years ago!

Same with the cast vs forged receiver. The average shooter will NEVER fire enough rounds
through either one to ever be able to tell the difference.

Buy the Springfield M1A.
 

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I've seen several LRB/usgi rifles for sale on this forum for under $2500. If I had it to do all over again that's the way I would go.
 
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