Originally Posted by dred
I'll start looking for parts when I get home tonight.
Will check out the Magpul stocks.
Any good sites for AR parts that you recommend?
Honestly, if it were my rifle, before I started changing cosmetic stuff, I would seriously look over the guts of the rifle.
Take a close look at the Bolt Carrier Group and make sure that the gas keys are properly staked. It should look like the first picture. http://m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=6993
Pull the bolt out and look for any pitting or cracks around the bolt face.
Then strip the bolt down and look at the extractor. The extractors tend to be the first part that wears out (should still last over 10,000 rounds) . Make sure it is good to go.
Take a look at the washers on the bolt.
Next, examine the trigger. Make sure nobody polished on it. AR 15 triggers are generally not case hardened all the way through. Bushmaster triggers are almost certainly not. That is bad because it means when someone starts polishing on it, they have removed all the hardness and left exposed soft metal. It is only a matter of time before it starts grinding away and you will get unintentional double fires, etc. That isn't safe or legal.
If you want to upgrade the trigger, Geissele sets the standard. They are easy to install. Several other companies make good triggers as well. The Wilson Combat TTU, Chip McCormick, and JP Enterprises triggers are all highly regarded. I have a Geissele (pronounced Guys-Lee) SSA-E. I love it.
Then after you are sure that all of the really important stuff that makes the rifle go is in working order, the very next thing you absolutely need to do is put a respectable sling on that baby.
I use the Ares Armor Husky sling, but the VCAS and VTAC slings are also highly regarded and perform similarly. A modern 2 point sling is a must.
AFTER that start thinking about fore ends and stocks.
If you want to replace the A2 stock with a carbine stock, you will need to also get a new Receiver Extension, Buffer, Buffer Spring, End Plate, and Stock.
I use a Magpul STR and I am quite fond of it. One of the advantages of an A2 stock is that it helps balance out the front of the rifle. I feel the STR performs similarly. The standard carbine stocks and the MOE and CTR and the Rogers Superstock are all very light and they tend to make the rifles they are on feel nose heavy. Adding a little bit of weight to the back isn't such a bad thing because it often times creates better balance. Coupled with a modern 2 point sling that you should have bought already, you are good to go.
As far as fore ends go, a lot of people are tempted to slap on a quad rail. That is usually a lot of extra weight. NAVY SEALS don't even use four rails for the most part. It is a lot more weight on a rifle length gas system with a long barrel. I would try to find a "modular" system where it is a tube that you can put a rail on anywhere you want. I use the Samson Evolution. Geissele just came out with a badass new rail and I would look into that, but it is pricey. Troy and Daniel Defense also make great rails. Nordic is often overlooked, and they make a good fore end that a lot of the 3 gun shooters use.
The free floating tubes/rails make a difference in accuracy. When I put my Samson free float on, it shrunk my groups by about half an inch at a hundred yards.