View Full Version : Building AR-15
November 15, 2004, 08:21 PM
I looking at building an AR-15 from scratch. I was wondering what tools are needed, and what all is involved. Also, do they cost less? And in your experience, are they generally more accurate? thanks
November 15, 2004, 09:11 PM
I built my own and believe I saved several hundred dollars over what I would have paid for a comparable AR. The lower is easy to build if you are even moderately handy with tools, and I had no trouble building it with tools I already had. The upper is another story, and I would at a minimum have someone help you build your first upper, or just buy a complete upper.
There is a lot of good information at AR15.com including directions to build both uppers and lowers. You can also find really good prices on parts if you lurk around their "Equipment Exchange" and are patient.
The best part is, you can build it EXACTLY the way you want it. :D
November 16, 2004, 01:41 AM
After looking at the prices some companies are charging for stripped lowers and parts kits, I'm not totally convinced a DIY is a money-saving route. Also, I haven't really seen two not-same-brand receivers (upper and lower) with a real positive fit, necessitating use of a wedge to stiffen them up.
Having said that, I have built several ARs for personal consumption, but did so from "80%" lowers... meaning I had to machine them myself. This was the only way I could do a DIY with a good fit between the upper and lower, and that was a halfway reliable home-built. If I didn't have a mill and lathe in the house, I would definitely go store-bought. (Heck, I have the mill and lathe, and still go store bought half the time!)
November 16, 2004, 04:01 PM
I built my M4gery with a combination of DPMS forged lower, and Bushy upper. I saved about $200 off the list of the comparable DPMS rifle, or $300 on a comparable Bushy, and incorporated a MagPull stock at the same time. Obviously street price is going to be lower than list, but even so I figure at worst I broke even and ended up with a MagPull stock for the same cost, so I came out at least $150 ahead. I also found that the upper/lower match while not as tight as possible, is by no means sloppy. Add to that the satisfaction of building it myself, and I would say it was well worth it.
November 16, 2004, 06:13 PM
Build your own I wouldnt go any other way . I have built 3 - two in 5.56 and one .50 Beowulf .You can build the basic 5.56 16" A2 carbine with collapasable M4 stock for right at $600 total . A J&T kit runs $489 with the M4 stock $450 with the A2 or reg col. stock . And the Ameetec Arms stripped lower reciever is $90, they are top notch it is Identical to my Bushmaster rec.The kit ships to your house and the reciever ships to a FFL dealer which you pay a transfer fee usually $20-$25 and $5 call in fee! Unless you are fortunate enough to have a dealer near by that has reciever's in stock and for a good price , but beware of the difference between a cast reciever and a forged one ,you want forged.The upper comes assembled, the rest is gravy , there are how to's at http://www.ar15.com. Hope this helps out. I recomend getting a multi wrench and an action block .My J&T will shoot 1moa if I do my part .
November 16, 2004, 06:24 PM
well, i already have a DPMS 24" special that shoots around 1/2moa, to 3/4 moa. I was hopeing to get a gun that would put 5 shoots in the same hole at 100 yards. This may be hard to do, but i would like to try. I'm thinking of a Krieger barrel, and some sort of heavy duty upper and lower like on the JP rifles.
November 16, 2004, 07:53 PM
If that is your goal, then yes, with time and work you can get there. You should look into some of the several very good books on accurizing AR15's. Some examples:
The Complete Guide to AR-15 Accuracy (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0967094852/qid=1100653374/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl14/102-5700725-4676933?v=glance&s=books&n=507846)
Black Magic: The Ultra Accurate AR-15 (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1931220018/qid=1100653347/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl14/102-5700725-4676933?v=glance&s=books&n=507846)
I would suggest that you should expect to have more than tinkering skills, however. To achieve your goal you will probably need some moderate gunsmithing skills. In the long run, it will probably be a very fulfilling experience, but I don't know if you will save any money on one rifle. You might even be better off paying an AR smith to accurize a rifle for you.
November 17, 2004, 10:12 PM
Does any one know where i could get a thick upper and lower like on the JP rifles? Also, about how much would it be for a custom AR-15 for varmints with the best components?
November 21, 2004, 07:08 PM
www.ameetecarms.com , has a thick billet side charging upper!
December 3, 2004, 08:42 AM
I`ve built a bunch of AR-15`s.The first was a little difficult,the rest not to bad.With the Bad Ban over the prices will come down somewhat.You might want to check out your local gun shows.
December 4, 2004, 01:26 PM
I've built a few myself and learned straight out of the USMC Armorer's Manual.
It's cheaper to roll your own but be sure to start out with quality parts from reputable dealers.
A lot can be done with simple hand tools but one tool you'll need is the combination tool for the barrel & stock. http://www.ar15.com reprints the manual on how to assemble them.
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