13 Sept 12
American manufacturers are currently hard-pressed to produce enough AR upper and lower receivers, as well as enough internal parts, to be able to fill current orders, (1) domestic military, (2) domestic civilian, and (3) foreign governments, for M4s
Domestic civilian consumers are at the bottom of the list and will have to be satisfied with what falls through the cracks. With America’s current feeble and floundering foreign policy, particularly in the Mideast and North Africa, there will be no lack of domestic and world-wide drama/chaos between now and the election in November. Demand for military rifles is bound to continue to dramatically increase. After the election, assuming there is one, it’s anyone’s guess!
So, if you don’t currently own an AR, as well as sufficient magazines and ammunition, it is going to be increasingly challenging to find a mil-spec copy for sale on the commercial market, depending upon where you live.
Remember, in addition to a good, military rifle, you’ll need sufficient ammunition for operational use, as well as for training, training for everyone in your family who is capable of using the rifle for serious purposes. Much ammunition is necessarily consumed in training, and competent maintenance, for each individual.
Best utility M4s (when you can find them) are from DLS, BCM, RRA, DSA, LMT, Daniel Defense, S&W, Doublestar, STS, LaRue and a few others.
Legitimate alternatives in 223 (5.56×45) include the RA/XCR, SIG/556, FN/SCAR. All three rifles are excellent, accept AR magazines, and may be more available than ARs.
In 7.62×39, Kalashnikovs can still be found at reasonable prices. Other good rifles in that caliber include the RA/XCR, PTR/32, and SIG/556
In 308 (7.62×51), best choices include SA/M1A, DSA/FAL, PTR/91, FN/SCAR, LaRue/OBR. All great rifles, but ammunition is expensive, relative to 223 (5.56×45). Magazines may be hard to find also.
My advice to the aware and sober is to get adequately geared-up and trained while you still can. Emergency food, water, medicine too!
In case you missed it, world history is currently lapsing into “spin-cycle!”