The AR-15: What is it? - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

The AR-15: What is it?


As the gun control discussion heats up across the nation yet again, we spoke with an expert to get a closer look at what the AR-15 really is. 

Justin Gaiche, who owns Chase Outdoors in Rothschild and has been selling firearms for 18 years, said there are several misconceptions when it comes to the AR-15.

One of the most common, is confusion over what the characters in the gun's name actually stand for.

"[It] stands for ArmaLite rifle, which is the company that created the gun." he said. "It's the model 15."

In common conversation, it's been mistakenly called an "assault rifle" or "automatic rife." Gaiche believes the latter is a dangerous misinterpretation, because automatic rifles are military grade, and not available to civilians. 

"The primary difference between the two guns, is with a military grade M14, you pull the trigger in hold the trigger in and it goes bang bang bang bang bang," he said. "[The AR-15] will function as a semiautomatic rifle, which means you pull the trigger once, the gun fires once."

He also said the AR-15 functions similarly to most firearms that look more like traditional hunting rifles, in that they both are semiautomatic and magazine-fed. 

The AR-15 is a popular gun with newer and less-experienced hunters because it doesn't have as strong of a recoil, according to Gaiche. 

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