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Old August 16, 2012, 05:56 PM   #1
blueovelwookie
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Help me build an AR-15

I want to build an AR-15, in .223 wylde, 6.5 grendle, .50 beowulf. Two lowers, three uppers. I have about $3500 to build. Uses: .223: varmint and target practice. 6.5 grendle: light game and varmint at distance. .50 beowulf: any thing under 200 yrds.
I have no experiance with an AR-platform.
Questions:
1. Parts needed?
2. upper and lowers? billet, forged, coated, polished, painted. Internal coating or polished billet for better operation?
3. Bolt?????
4. muzzle break???

or should i just by a rtf ar?

Brett
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Old August 16, 2012, 07:20 PM   #2
tobnpr
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Wow...
TOO much to address in one thread...

Go to Brownells.com...

They have a great, step-by-step video series on the build, checklists for parts.

Suggest you also buy Glen Zedicker's book on building the AR, it was helpful as well when paired with the videos.

I think you need to learn a bit first, then come back with more specific questions if you have them.
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Old August 16, 2012, 08:16 PM   #3
TimW77
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Help me build an AR-15

"I want to build an AR-15, in .223 wylde, 6.5 grendle, .50 beowulf. Two lowers, three uppers. I have about $3500 to build. Uses: .223: varmint and target practice. 6.5 grendle: light game and varmint at distance. .50 beowulf: any thing under 200 yrds."

My first suggestion if you know nothing about the AR-15 is to SLOW DOWN!!!

Buy or build JUST ONE upper and lower for now.

Being your first AR-15, my recommendation is to always start with the .223. Once you have more experience then move on to additional uppers and lowers.

This way you don't end up being unhappy with all of your uppers and lowers.

T.
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Old August 17, 2012, 01:24 AM   #4
wyop
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I'll echo the suggestion to start with the canonical 5.56/.223 AR.

You should understand that you'll need several tools if you intend on building the AR up from pins and stripped upper/lower receiver(s).

You'll need the barrel nut wrench, a torque wrench, the spanner for the buffer tube, roll pin punches (get a set), a receiver block to hold the upper in a vise, a screwdriver or hex driver for the pistol grip screw, etc.

If you're going to put on the barrel extension, you'll need some more tooling to do that. First time out of the gate, it's easier to buy a barrel pre-contoured with the barrel extension already on their and the gas hole pre-drilled. You probably want to buy your bolt carrier with the gas key pre-staked on.

Total cost of the tooling (assuming you have a good shop vise already and some small ball pein hammers) will be about $200+.

You really might want to watch a video, get hands-on instruction or at least get an armorer's manual for the AR before you begin. There's very little that isn't straightforward on the AR, but there are some things that aren't immediately obvious unless you've built one up from the pins. There are a couple of points where you can break stuff off if you ham-fist the driving of pins into the lower - particularly the "ears" of the receiver that hold the bolt catch onto the lower. Getting the dust cover spring installed correctly can frustrate the first-timer as well.
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Old August 17, 2012, 06:55 AM   #5
DnPRK
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Be aware that AR parts are becoming scarce at this time. Folks are scared that Obama will be re-elected and outlaw guns the way Clinton did in the 1990s.

For Grendel and Beowulf, look for the hard-to-find parts first. That would be barrels, bolts and magazines. With the barrels in hand, you'll be able to examine the barrel extensions and determine if you need M4 cut or non-M4 cut upper receivers.

You'll probably be able to find all the other parts but prices will be high compared to what they were a year ago. Order parts from those companies who tell you they have parts in stock. If the website doesn't tell you about their stock level, assume they are out and go elsewhere (or be prepared to wait for months).
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Old August 19, 2012, 12:32 PM   #6
ClydeFrog
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Join Date: May 1, 2010
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Check these resources...

I'd start with a AR catalog from the industry leader; Brownells www.brownells.com . They are worth using for after market parts, gunsmith equipment, etc.

I'd also check Gunvideo.com & Paladin-press.com. They have a few AR/M-16 type videos, books, guides, etc.

These websites may help with AR parts & services.

ClydeFrog
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Old August 20, 2012, 09:56 PM   #7
jproaster
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I'd follow the above advise to get a list of tools and parts to build the 223. Watch some videos. Go to large gun show and buy what you need and shop the Internet.


The action is a bit tricky and that was the hardest part for my build. I'll admit I bought a completed upper though.

Don't need a billet really.

Good workspace, good tools, good lighting and Red Bull are absolutely necessary.

If youre not too tool savvy, just buy rtf.
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Old August 20, 2012, 10:25 PM   #8
Justice06RR
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Quote:
My first suggestion if you know nothing about the AR-15 is to SLOW DOWN!!!

Buy or build JUST ONE upper and lower for now.

Being your first AR-15, my recommendation is to always start with the .223. Once you have more experience then move on to additional uppers and lowers.

This way you don't end up being unhappy with all of your uppers and lowers.

T.
I'll echo this quite loudly if its your first AR build without any previous AR knowledge and experience.

Start with a good brand lower (or buy 2 together since it might save you on shipping and background check). Buy a good quality lower parts kit from Brownells (Spikes, RRA, etc).

You also need to factor in the price of tools and work equipment like a good table, vice block, wrenches, etc. That will add a couple of hundred bucks to the budget of the build.

Good luck and have fun. Building, or rather Assembling AR's is a fun way to know your rifle inside out, but can also be challenging to a beginner. If you really had $3k available now to start, I suggest buying a complete 5.56/.223 AR first and work/build your way up to the other calibers.
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Old August 21, 2012, 06:33 PM   #9
tobnpr
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Quote:
Building, or rather Assembling AR's is a fun way to know your rifle inside out, but can also be challenging to a beginner.
Perhaps to some, but I suspect, not many.
As a lifelong contractor, I've got just about every common tool known (and a bunch of uncommon ones as well) and my then 17 year old son had never really touched them, or shown any inclination towards learning how to use them.

He wanted to build an AR for his HS graduation present. We did a lot of research and put together a build (with some help from an FFL dealer) and the boxes of parts arrived from various suppliers. Being the helpful (and tool-experienced) Dad, I wanted to sit with him and coach...

He politely told me to get the hell away from the gun/reloading bench after dinner...
By midnight, his build was complete, and correct.

Some of the tools make the job convenient, but are not "required".

Don't be intimidated. Not difficult, and building it exactly the way you want it is a big plus. Just make sure you get ALL the parts...
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Old August 22, 2012, 08:58 PM   #10
Marquezj16
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First study how to put one together.
Here's the instructions I use.

http://www.ar15.com/content/guides/assembly/lower/

Then look for Gavitoob on youtube for the upper guide.
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