Why a battle rifle? Bawb has gone to great lengths stressing the superiority of the 7.62X51mm NATO (.308) round over the 5.56X45mm NATO (.223) round. You can read his thoughts here, and here. Since I shouldn't only reference authors who try to sneak the phrase "poopy drawers" into every paragraph, I will quote no less of a source than the Bible (Boston's Gun Bible, 2000 edition):
"Since rifles are for neutralizing long-distance threats, choose the .308 over the .223. Although the .223 will sometimes (and even often) suffice, it's in all honesty limited to 300yds through light cover, while a .308 will go through 12" of tree, or drop a bad guy out to 800yds. You can sportingly hunt deer and elk with a .308, but not with a .223. Get a .308 first." Here endeth the lesson.
I had bought a cheap Spanish CETME battle rifle many years back. The CETME was the basis for the later German Heckler & Koch G3 (or HK91) which was very successful. My CETME was functional, but never really blew my skirt up. The "paddlewheel" rear sight on it was junk.
There were several contenders to become my new battle rifle. There were my brother's beloved FN FALs, as well as the M14 derivatives, the FN SCAR 17S, the aforementioned HK91s, and the AR-10 derivatives. There were about three-thousand reasons why I wouldn't be getting an FN SCAR 17S. The others seemed pretty good, but the AR-10 stood out to me.
It was my familiarity with the AR system that I liked. I started shooting M-16s when I joined the Nat'l Guard in 1992 and I'd had a civvy AR-15 (poodle-shooter) of my own since the mid-1990s. Operating the controls had been committed to muscle memory and I could (probably still) field strip an AR blindfolded. I don't have a lot of free time to practice with a new operating system and I'm too old a dog to learn new tricks. So, an AR-10 derivative it would be.
I originally figured on getting an Armalite, the original maker of the AR-10. I handled a few other AR-style .308's from some other manufacturers, like DPMS, and they seemed rather fragile and chintzy. I've never had much use for those telescoping M4-style stocks but it was hard finding one these days with the solid A2-style stock like I wanted.
That's when I came across a Rock River Arms LAR-8. It was solid and sturdy. It was a "Standard A4" model meaning it was a flattop with an A2 buttstock and handguard. It had a 20" chrome moly barrel with a 1:10 rifling twist. It had an A2-style flash hider, a gas block sight base and a Hogue rubber pistol grip. It came with one 20-round magazine, a RRA hard-sided carry case, manual and a warranty. I bought it along with a set of flip-up sights for it.
Of course the most important part of owning a rifle is naming it. I remembered playing "Medal of Honor" on my Sony Playstation years ago and having to infiltrate and destroy the rail-gun "Greta" on one of the missions. Seemed like a good name for a gun, so I named her Greta.
I couldn't wait to take Greta out shooting and I wasn't disappointed when I did. With her RRA two-stage trigger, Greta shot like a dream. Recoil was negligible. Greta was more accurate than I was. RRA says the LAR-8 Standard A4 should get 1 MOA at 100 yards. Zeroing at 25 yards with the flip-up sights I was getting one-inch groups, which ain't bad for me since I only get to the range a few times a year.
After consulting with Bawb on what riflescope to buy, I got a Burris MTAC riflescope in 1X-4X-24mm. This has the Ballistic CQ Reticle which eliminates having to guesstimate holdover for long-distance shots. According to the Burris literature, "the circular 'donut' in the center provides ultra-fast engagement at close distances, while the smaller dots of the reticle provide trajectory compensation out to 600 yards for 5.56 62 grain FMJ and 7.62 150 grain FMJ cartridges."