The AR in both the 10 and 15 model does not stand for Assault Rifle or Automatic Rifle as is widely popularized. The AR actually stands for Armalite Rifle, the first manufacturer that developed the AR platform back in the 1950s.
Though the similar name would lead you to believe that they are similar, they are actually more different than one would assume on first thought.
First, let’s touch on the AR-10 model. The AR-10 is a .308 semi automatic rifle and it is incredibly light compared to other weapons and models with the .308 distinction.
This is due to the weapon’s direct impingement design, while most other .308 weapons rely on a piston-driven design that tends to run much heavier of a weight load.
Weighing anywhere from 7.25 pounds to 9 pounds without a loaded magazine, the range depending on your particular model of AR-10.
The top picatinny rail system allows for a multitude of scope and optics options on your AR-10 which is a great feature for versatility.
The AR-10 also comes with: an adjustable front sight, along with adjustable rear sight helping with elevation accuracy, and windage accuracy respectively. Along with accepting detachable magazines, , in-line stock and pistol grip, and aluminum alloy receiver.
Now, let’s talk a little bit about the AR-15. Basically, the AR-15 is a modified version of the AR-10 that was developed in the 1950s. The overall weight of the AR-15 is less than that of the AR-10, with weights ranging from 5.5 pounds to 8.5 pounds without a magazine.
The AR-15, or M-16 military version, is the typical choice for military weapons due to its ability along with the fact that it is so light, helping with easy maneuverability and transport load.
The AR-15 is chambered to take 223 Remington or 5.56 NATO ammunition, which also aids for military usage because the rounds are smaller, so the operator and rifle are able to carry a heavier load. Especially compared to the .308 Winchester round taken by the AR-10, which is much more bulky and large, lowering the total amount carried on an operator.
Due to the lighter load of the AR-15 and the lighter ammunition, the recoil on this weapon is less than that of the AR-10 which packs a bigger punch in terms of recoil.
Considering the fact that these weapons are similar, you would think their parts are almost completely interchangeable, but this is not true.
The few parts that are interchangeable are:
- Buttstock assemblies
- Triggers and trigger springs
- Hammers and hammer springs
- Pistol grips (a spacer may be needed for certain models)
- Receiver extension (Buffer Tube)
- Disconnector and disconnector spring
- Buffer detent
- Magazine release buttons and springs
- Safety selectors
Though this list might seem long, it is actually incredibly small. The problem furthering itself by the fact that there are numerous different AR-10 and AR-15 manufacturers that all use different specifications. Making the list of interchangeable parts even more difficult to discover for your weapon system. Due to the fact that the AR-10 and AR-15 are chambered for different caliber rounds, along with the overall size difference between the two weapons themselves.