Eagle Arms AR-10 (T) .308
by Jeff Quinn

photography by Jeff Quinn

January 13th, 2003

 

 

The last few years have seen the rise of a great interest in military style semi-auto weapons. Manufacturers of AR-15 type rifles seem to proliferate from all directions, with every imaginable variation on the concept available. This is good, as the AR-15 and its type is a fine weapons system.

If a larger caliber AR type weapon is desired, the field narrows dramatically in the choice of manufacturer. ArmaLite dominates this market with its excellent AR-10 rifles. About a year ago, Gunblast reviewed an ArmaLite Realtree AR-10 and found it to be a powerful, reliable, and accurate weapon.

ArmaLite now has a new entry into the .308 caliber AR-10 family of weapons with their Eagle Arms division. The Eagle line was introduced to give shooters a  lower-cost alternative to the ArmaLite AR-10. With the Eagle line, a shooter can get a full-blown AR-10 .308 for not much more than the cost of a quality .223 AR-15, such as ArmaLite’s own M15 series of weapons.

The Eagle Arms AR-10s are built with the same care and craftsmanship as ArmaLite’s other weapons, but use chrome-moly steel barrels instead of the stainless barrels used on ArmaLite’s top-of-the-line AR-10 target rifles.

With the Eagle AR-10s selling for hundreds of dollars less than ArmaLite’s other AR-10s, I was anxious to see how they performed.

The Eagle AR-10 sent to me is finished in a matte black over the entire weapon, resulting in a serious, business-like appearance. The weapon that I received is the target version, with the heavy twenty-four inch barrel. The barrel measures .802 of an inch in diameter, and, thankfully, has no muzzle brake or other appendage attached. The gun weighs right at ten pounds, and balances just forward of where the barrel enters the upper receiver. The round aluminum hand guard is vented and free floated  for maximum cooling and better accuracy.

The AR-10 breaks down for cleaning and maintenance easily, by pushing one pin to the right and folding the upper receiver forward, allowing removal of the bolt and bolt carrier without tools. The trigger pull on the sample rifle released at 5.6 pounds, which is a bit heavy for benchrest work, but a good compromise between target and field use.

After function testing the AR-10 (T) with several rounds of Lake City surplus NATO spec ammo, I mounted a Tasco 6 to 24 power Varmint/Target scope in the superb ArmaLite scope mount, and secured it to the flat top upper receiver. Functioning with a variety of ammunition was excellent, with no failures to feed, fire, or eject any of the ammo tested.

Accuracy with the Eagle AR-10 was as good as the ammo. With the Lake City surplus the gun would place two or three shots almost touching at 110 yards, then a flyer would mess up the group. The chronograph proved that the ammo was at fault. Moving on to the Federal Gold Medal match ammo, the gun turned in an impressive performance, with groups measuring under three-quarters of an inch at 110 yards the norm, and a few groups measuring closer to five-eighths of an inch. The ArmaLite scope mount allowed removal and replacement of the scope quickly and easily, with no loss of zero. It is a rugged, strong, and simple design.

Overall, I was very impressed with the performance and accuracy of the Eagle Arms AR-10. It is the most accurate AR-10 that I have fired, barely edging out the ArmaLite Realtree version tested last year. It is a rugged, reliable, and accurate .308 semi-auto.  If you are ready to move up to an AR-10, give the Eagle Arms version a serious look. It is priced well below its nearest competition, and gives up nothing in performance. Go to www.armalite.com


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Click pictures for a larger version.

 

Eagle Arms, a division of ArmaLite, has introduced their AR-10 target rifle. Jeff found it to be a powerful, reliable, and accurate weapon, and a good value.

 

 

The Eagle Arms AR-10 target rifle sports a heavy 24" chrome-moly barrel. The Eagle Arms tube proved capable of fine accuracy.

 

 

The Eagle Arms AR-10 also features a free floated ventilated handguard.

 

 

Another popular accessory included on the Eagle Arms AR-10 is a gas block with integral mounting rail.

 

 

The excellent workmanship on Eagle Arms' AR-10 is evident upon close inspection of the interior.

 

 

A good-quality scope in ArmaLite's excellent scope mount is a necessity with a rifle as accurate as the Eagle Arms AR-10, as is high-quality ammunition such as Federal's Gold Medal Match ammo.

 

 

Quick-detach sling swivels complete the package.

 

 

Jeff was favorably impressed by the Eagle Arms AR-10. Eagle Arms has found a way to make ArmaLite quality (and accuracy) available at a more accessible price.