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Old February 15, 2018, 10:11 PM   #1
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Join Date: February 10, 2018
Posts: 1
Upper shopping or snipe hunting?

Hey everyone,

I'm in the market for my first AR-15 style rifle, and have decided to start by building my own, sort of. Mostly I'd prefer to assemble prefab components - that is, I don't want to put together every single part. Right now, I'm looking for a complete upper assembly, as this seems to be the most expensive part.

After doing a decent amount of research, I've come up with a list of features I'd like. Trouble is, I'm having a hard time finding it. It seems like I can find things that are close, but not quite. With the amount of variety out there, I'm wondering if maybe the perfect upper for me exists but I just can't find it among all the options. So, I'm hoping someone can take a look and tell me if I'm crazy or point me in the right direction.

Here's what I'm looking for:

Chamber: 5.56/.223
BBL: 20" bull, parkerized (or just not stainless), preferably 4150, but would settle for 4140, 1:7 twist, would take 1:8.
Gas system: DI, preferably rifle length (would settle for mid)
Hand guard: 12"+, preferably MLok, but any guard would be fine if it isn't too hard to swap out later.
Standard BCG and charging handle are fine, if included or available.

I'm looking to use this to replace my coyote rifle (currently a Henry .357). Most places seem to have nice varmint rifles that would do the job pretty well. But they always seem to have SS barrels which I honestly don't like the look of, though I understand they may be more accurate. And they also have pretty plain hand guards that would allow me to mount a bipod OR spotlight, but not both (which would be great for night hunting).

Also, I can't afford something from a high end shop. Most of these features are available from a couple places I've seen in the $450-$700 range (Rock River, Atlantic Arms). I just haven't seen all these things rogether.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
aequitas1916 is offline  
Old February 16, 2018, 07:33 AM   #2
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Join Date: February 2, 2010
Posts: 6,385
OK, here is my opinion.
A 20" "bull" barrel is a heavy piece of equipment for your intended use. Probably not any more accurate than a H-bar profile(which is fairly heavy itself) for the number of shots you'll need for coyote hunting. Melonite is the finish of choice for me--far more wear resistant vs phosphate park. BTW: SS barrels are often NOT as accurate as non-SS barrels.
IMHO 1-8 is adequate for bullets exhibiting expansion characteristics suitable for use on coyotes. I(we) use 50-55 grain bullets exclusively for coyotes after seeing the results of heavier bullets.
Any 20" barrel will be a rifle gas unless some dufus is trying to cheat you. The rifle length gas will dictate the minimum length of the handguard.
If you already plan to change the HG later, start with standard. You might even be able do some handwork and screw an extra rail onto that type HG to get your light and bipod connection.
Unless you have dainty fingers and/or never wear gloves, your charge handle needs an extended latch.
Mobuck is offline  
Old February 16, 2018, 08:21 AM   #3
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Join Date: December 28, 2013
Location: Alabama
Posts: 199
I agree. No need for a heavier bull-barrel. This upper will serve you well.
imashooter is offline  

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