Love 5.56 but don't want to shoot an AR-15 like everyone else? We've got you, so don't worry. See the best 5.56 rifles available that aren't ARs!
I've discovered a small number of weapons in various forms and designs that can be considered AR-15 substitutes. But before we get going, I also want to address a major issue. There are a ton of 5.56 non-AR-15 rifles available, but many of them are difficult to love.
Mini-14 By Ruger
Look at the Ruger Mini-14 if you want the AR-15's proven performance in a more discrete design. If you choose the model with a wooden stock, the rifle has a more conventional appearance. The Garand-style action has a breech bolt locking mechanism, a fixed-piston gas system, and a moving gas cylinder that self-cleans. The Mini-14, unlike the Garand, lets you keep the AR-15's detachable magazine feature, but at 38 inches overall, it is a little bit longer than a typical 16-inch AR. Get the 20-round mag version of the extended mag variant if you can. You will immediately have more firepower thanks to it.
SCAR-16S from FN
The FN SCAR requires no introduction as it is used by operators and military units all over the world. 5.56 NATO is the caliber of the SCAR 16S. It has the recognizable side-folding "boot" stock with comb height and pull length adjustments. You may use AR-15 magazines with the SCAR. The rotating bolt rifle's 16-inch barrel is gas-powered. The rifle can be used by both left- and right-handed shooters thanks to the ambidextrous magazine release and safety as well as the reciprocating charging handle, which can be adjusted to either side.
Galil ACE by IWI
The Galil ACE Gen 2 is neither an AR nor a pure AK. In any case, it is a cutting-edge, effective fighting gun. Additionally, compared to a standard AK, it has a left-side, reciprocating charging handle that is simpler to use with your support hand. Owners of the Galil ACE will be able to easily install all of their preferred accessories to this weapon thanks to the free-float, MLOK rail that is featured.
According to the presenter of The Gun Rack, the Galil ACE from Israeli Weapons Industries (IWI) is the best AR-15 substitute since it is essentially an AK-pattern rifle that has been greatly improved and upgraded. It possesses a long-stroke, ultra-reliable gas piston mechanism that has been extensively tested in action all over the world, just like the AK. This Galil ACE can be fed from AR-15-style magazines and can be chambered for the 5.56 NATO round, unlike conventional AK models.