A timeless way to connect to an audience is the utilization of an analogy. If you have ever had to communicate cross culturally or just to someone who thinks differently you probably ended up using this method.
Ak47 "The hammer"
AR-15 "The Sword"
LAR-47 "The AXE"
Almost 2 years ago our shop learned through a customer that Rock River Arms was going to be putting out a 7.62 x39 Ar15 labeled the LAR-47. The only thing we really knew of it was that “it's gonna use regular ak mags”. I was asked if I wanted to be on the “list” to receive one. Of course jumped at it being a gun addict and knowing how the industry is with "New designs". What was it going to hurt right? I figured it would be a SIG MPX story and maybe make it to vaporware status if that. Fortunately, I was wrong.
Fast forward to fall of 2014 and I was burning up my credit card as my LAR-47 had arrived at the shop. At that point I had completely forgotten about it because it had been so long. Seemingly the rest of the industry did as well. It came with the nice Rock River blow molded case and one magazine. This gun also came "optics ready" which means you get no sights.... Obviously the larger chunk of the price in this rifle is R&D and warranty.
Since I have gotten my LAR-47 RRA has increased the depth of the line. Three more models have been released.
Why did i buy it?
I had two reasons for adding this rifle to the collection. One thing that I have recently come to terms with is that if you want to be good shooter you have to shoot alot. At around 6$ a box its arguably the best rifle caliber in terms of value. It can kill a deer. It is cheap. Its robust and designed to be stored. The other reason for buying this was to be able to shoot a "39" through a suppressor. Having a concentric thread on an ak47 variant is wishful thinking to say the least. After buying multiple suppressors before 41p hits I really wanted to have something I could shoot cheaply through my AAC SDN6 supppressor. 300blk is a sweet round, but it is still a "reloaders" round. At an average of 20$ a box, practicing with it on a regular basis would eat up my entire gun allowance and availability of 300blk is still mediocre at best.
This LAR-47 has roughly 3000 rounds through it. It has run flawlessly both suppressed and unsuppressed. I have yet to have an issue when I pull the trigger. One thing that will become apparent with a ar/ak hybrid is the tighter dimensions of the AR-15 design not being as forgiving to the labrador shit powder they fill 7.62x39 with. Suppress the LAR-47 and you effectively just doubled your cleaning time. The chromed bolt and carrier really help to minimize the time it takes to clean. I have been testing frog lube paste with this rifle and so far they go together like coffee and cigarettes.
I typically clean my rifles religiously after I take them out. My suggestion is that you do the same with this platform and ammo combo. I ran out of time after shooting it one night and threw it in the safe for maybe a day or two. When I took it out to clean the action was locked up from poop combloc propellant, condensation from shooting in the cold weather and salt. The recipe of sub 20 degree temperatures, "non corrosive" but corrosive ammo and heat from firing produced a concrete type slurry, an idiosyncrasy worth noting. It did not hinder the performance during firing but as it was allowed to "set" in a moisture controlled safe. It did unknowingly "Deadline" the gun by gluing the action. The remedy was a little PB blaster and 10 mins soaking.
The sub model I purchased was the CAR A4 LAR-47, which is the bare bones version. The first noticeable quirk was how barrel heavy this rifle is. Rock River gives you a chrome lined heavy barrel. They are not kidding.... To offset this I replaced the OEM stock with a Magpul UBR. The UBR stock, although expensive has a very solid feel and a little extra weight. The front end got a 15 inch Midwest Industries FF lightweight Keymod with a Midwest gas block. The boring birdcage was replaced with the AAC 51t Muzzle brake obviously allowing for muffler attachment. The muzzle brake has surprised me in its performance. It really kills the muzzle flip. It is not just an adapter with the after thought of compensation. It is kind of a sleeper as far as muzzle brakes go. The pistol grip is now a Magpul MOE + in "Flat dark dirty all the time" color. Honestly It handles like a dream. No buyers remorse on any of the add-ons thus far. The idea of balancing the rifle out with a heavier stock and light forend actually worked out perfectly.
On average with Tula ammo I was getting 1 3/4 inch 5 shot groups. This exceeds the industry standard of 2 moa in a high end AK patterned rifle. Rock River does give you a 2 stage trigger in the lar-47, which really helps with precision shooting. In all honestly, I didn't really buy this rifle for accuracy and would have been happy with 3moa targets.
The LAR 47 is so far an awesome rifle and really is a unique piece of work. The value in the "39" has been overlooked and overshadowed by the super fancy tactical special mid range calibers of today. Through entering in the world of competitve firearm shooting, I have come to realize that ammo is one of the most expensive training tools you buy. Ammo is also one of the most important.
The proprietary lower receiver is an sweet piece of work. Using standard Ak mags it addresses the the biggest issue of converting a AR-15 to a 7.62x39 chucker.
The dirtiness of the ammo is something that can become an issue in cold weather. I think this rifle would benefit from some "Israeli sand cuts" on the bolt carrier or something of that nature.
It is a very budget minded suppressor host.
Its cheap to shoot but requires some additional cleaning time because of the ammo.
The previous issue with the bolt being weaker in 7.62x39 AR home built rifles has yet to develop or show witness on this particular rifle. About half of my rounds have been suppressed which increases the wear on a direct impingement AR type rifle. This gun does not get any special treatment. I see these as tools and use them as such and so far I have not had any issues.