For military purposes, AR-10 and AR-15 are the most popular rifle choices, sporting, and target shooting. Though AR-10 and AR-15 look similar, they are way different in several important aspects.
Unlike AR-15, some AR-10 parts are not interchangeable between brands. While planning to choose AR-10 and other interchangeable parts, first find out about the AR-10. To know more and make the process simpler, let’s compare AR-10 vs. AR-15, including which parts are interchangeable and which are not.
AR-10 is surprisingly light compared to other .308 semi-auto rifles. AR-10 can easily accept a detachable magazine, an adjustable front sight for accuracy at elevation, an adjustable rear sight for windage, in-line stock, an aluminum alloy receiver, and pistol grip.
AR-15, on the other hand, is the modified version of the AR-10 which is even lighter than AR-10. The AR-15 is chambered in 5.56 NATO / .223 Rem, and the cartridge’s small size gives you the ability to carry more rounds on a person or rifle compared to the bigger and heavier .308 WIN. Also, AR-15 has softer recoil, which leads to quicker and more accurate follow-up shots.
Since both rifles are similar, some parts of AR-15/AR-10 are interchangeable, while the size and caliber difference make certain parts incompatible.
Compatible and Interchangeable Parts between the AR-15 and AR-10
- Buttstock assemblies
- Triggers and trigger springs
- Bolt catch roll pin (Armalite Style only)
- 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
Non Compatible Parts between the AR-15 and AR-10:
- Rifle Buffers: AR-10 rifle buffers are shorter and heavier than the AR-15 to accommodate the longer .308 bolt carrier group and the force from a larger round. They can’t be interchanged but can be used only if the buffer tubes are the same length.
- Barrels: Barrels are not interchangeable as the AR-10 and AR-15 are chambered in two different calibers. The barrels threads and barrel nut extensions aren’t even interchangeable.
- Handguards and Rail Systems: They aren't interchangeable because of the barrel nut size difference between the 2 rifles.
- Bolt Catch: An AR-15 bolt catch is not compatible with most AR-10 lowers.
- Lower Parts Kit: AR-15 standard lower parts kit won’t work with an AR-10 because of the differences in the takedown pin, bolt catch, and other lower receiver pins.
- Magazine Catch: The magazine catch in the Armalite AR-10 features a unique design that makes it incompatible with the AR-15 or any other AR model.
- Muzzle Device: Both rifles are chambered in different calibers, and so most muzzle devices are not interchangeable.
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