Finally Finished My Dream AR-15!


PDA






OregonJohnny
January 5, 2011, 01:40 PM
3 years ago, I traded my first and only AR-15 in on a new Springfield XDM 40 handgun, and regretted it almost immediately. That AR was a standard Bushmaster A3 20" Target model. The only things I added were a different grip, and a 3-9x40 scope. Since then, I have been researching, waiting, losing interest in ARs, gaining it back, and finally deciding it was time for one once again.

I knew this time around, exactly what I wanted: A 16" barrel, adjustable stock, a rail, and removable/flip-up sights. I had some gift cards to a local SG store, and couldn't pass up the deal they had on the S&W M&P OR model. Of course, it came with no sights and no rail, but I knew it would serve as the perfect platform for me to configure exactly how I wanted. I'm very happy with my little build, and I just have to show it off.

Here was the M&P OR before I went "accessory crazy":

http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee179/mgtmel/AR-Before.jpg

And here it is 4 UPS deliveries worth of accessories later, and exactly 2 pounds heavier:

http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee179/mgtmel/AR1.jpg

Please forgive the low-end Bushnell red dot, I had it lying around. If it doesn't hold up, I'll eventually invest in a better red dot. For now, I just need to get out there and shoot it! I am so happy to be back in the AR-15 club. :)

If you enjoyed reading about "Finally Finished My Dream AR-15!" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
68wj
January 5, 2011, 01:49 PM
Congrats! Now, go shoot it a whole bunch and enjoy.

kis2
January 5, 2011, 01:55 PM
man, that looks great in both configurations, but I really like what you've done with it, almost exactly what I want (currently saving my pennies)

congrats!

Sam Cade
January 5, 2011, 02:13 PM
What is your sling solution going to be?

788Ham
January 5, 2011, 02:21 PM
Congratulations OregonJohnny !:cool:

I'm not into the AR style of rifles, but do know how you're feeling! I felt the same way, the day I dragged my 6" Colt Python home, nothing finer could be had!!! Enjoy your new toy, get some rounds downrange and let us know how it holds up, again, congratulations!

C-grunt
January 5, 2011, 02:40 PM
Good looking stick. Whats the make of rail?

I really love the Magpul clip together rail covers (cant remember their name right now). They look really good all mix-matched together and feel really good in the hand.

OregonJohnny
January 5, 2011, 02:41 PM
What is your sling solution going to be?

You know, I haven't quite figured it out yet. I like the idea of a quick-detach single/double point sling, but as you can see, the M&P OR does not come with a front sling loop. It does have a threaded hole in the bottom of the gas block that I assume is for a swivel. I think I'll end up getting a removable mount to put on the left side of the rail, and an end plate adapter for the rear. That way, at least I have options until I find out what is most comfortable. The Magpul MS2 sling looks perfect for multiple mount points, but $50 is just a bit steep for me.

My use would mostly be slinging it to the side or back between loading up mags, to walk around, walk down range, etc. If I eventually take some sort of carbine class, I'm sure I'll find out very quickly what works for me while moving/shooting/transitioning to handgun, etc.

My buddy's single point setup on his AR feels a bit awkward, although it's very fast to get the rifle up. I don't like the way the rifle bangs around in a very uncomfortable spot when you just drop it. :eek:

C-grunt
January 5, 2011, 02:46 PM
Look into the Vtac sling and the Blue Force Vickers slings. They are awesome slings. Someone has a sale on the Vickers sling for half off, cant remember who right now. I run the Vtac and I like it a lot but kinda wanna try the Vickers. Standard price on them is 35 bucks or so.

Plenty of people sell rail mounted QD sling attachments and they work well.

OregonJohnny
January 5, 2011, 02:51 PM
Good looking stick. Whats the make of rail?

Thanks! It's the UTG Pro carbine length drop-in. I know, I know..., it's not a Troy or Midwest Industries, but I thought I'd give it a try for now. My friend has this exact rail on his Bushmaster, and it's held up very well and has remained tight through many hundreds of rounds so far. Otherwise, I would have been skeptical of a rail at such a low price point.

I really love the Magpul clip together rail covers (cant remember their name right now).

They're called the XTM rail covers. I like them, too. They are about half the bulk and weight as the UTG rubber rail covers that came with the rail.

I actually couldn't believe how easily all these accessories installed on the rifle. Normally I end up cursing, sweating, and screaming at mods I try and make to other firearms.

courtgreene
January 5, 2011, 03:07 PM
I like it, but don't sell that "just laying around" red dot short. I have the same on a mini 14, and it may not be an eotech/aimpoint, but it works great. (hold your fire mini haters, some of us just like them)

I also have the same kitchen floor as you, so hey, great minds...

mshootnit
January 5, 2011, 04:29 PM
Ha! Great write up, I do the same pondering and switching my mind, and I thought I was the only one to get multiple shipments of parts! (Or at least my wife thinks I am the only one) Turned into a cool looking rifle. I just got myself traded into an Armalite build 20", Only thing is its heavy barrel and I wish it was a tad lighter.

Stevie-Ray
January 5, 2011, 06:44 PM
Thanks! It's the UTG Pro carbine length drop-in. I know, I know..., it's not a Troy or Midwest Industries, but I thought I'd give it a try for now. My friend has this exact rail on his Bushmaster, and it's held up very well and has remained tight through many hundreds of rounds so far. Otherwise, I would have been skeptical of a rail at such a low price point. Don't worry about the UTG; if it's as good as when they first came out it will be fine. I've had one on my Colt for several years and never wanted for more. And as was said, don't sell the red dot short, those Bushnells hold up pretty well and offer good service. Nice looking weapon.

OregonJohnny
January 5, 2011, 07:15 PM
don't sell the red dot short, those Bushnells hold up pretty well and offer good service. Nice looking weapon.

Thank you. Yes, I've had the Bushnell Trophy red dot for about 5 or 6 years, but it's only been on top of .22 handguns until now. It seems solid and is still on the original battery. I've heard 95% good things about the UTG rail, and the 5% of bad I've heard seems to simply knock it for being "cheap" compared to the upper-level $150-250 rails.

The red dot is Bushnell, the tall rings are NCStar, the flip-up rear sight is Magpul, and the removable front sight is UTG. But miraculously, the red dot co-witnesses perfectly with the front post, and all 3 sights line up great. We'll see how much tweaking is needed to sight everything in.

Just because it's a cool pic, here is some more eye candy, the new M&P with it's sidearm partner, my Beretta 92FS:

http://i234.photobucket.com/albums/ee179/mgtmel/AR2.jpg

Girodin
January 5, 2011, 07:57 PM
I guess some people dream bigger than others. At any rate, glade you like your new AR as that is what matters most for a "fun gun".

OregonJohnny
January 5, 2011, 08:01 PM
I guess some people dream bigger than others.

Oh sure, I'd love a Noveske (especially being in Oregon), but for now, I'm just thrilled to have a decent-quality AR configured exactly how I want it. I've been waiting to add an AR-15 back into my collection for years now.

DAdams
January 5, 2011, 11:00 PM
This AR mix and match stuff is annoying. I said I wouldn't get into it. :cuss:

I just quasi finished a build and I already see things I want to change, which of course means $$. Grrrr...;)

Your rig looks good. How's it shoot?

brandon_mcg
January 5, 2011, 11:36 PM
AR paired with a beretta 92FS. thats a good combination.

i keep talking myself out of building an AR.....can't figure out why.

B yond
January 6, 2011, 12:02 AM
BRD is infectious and contagious...

Have you thought about your next upper yet?

RockyMtnTactical
January 6, 2011, 02:17 AM
My buddy's single point setup on his AR feels a bit awkward, although it's very fast to get the rifle up. I don't like the way the rifle bangs around in a very uncomfortable spot when you just drop it.

A good 2-point quick adjust gives you the best of both worlds. Freedom to move the weapon around, but also keeps it secure.

madcratebuilder
January 6, 2011, 05:41 AM
Nice job on your rifle. What's the next one going to be? Good luck finding a sling you like. I've stayed old school and use M14 GI slings with QD's on all mine.

FMJMIKE
January 6, 2011, 08:54 PM
I like it !!!

LawScholar
January 6, 2011, 09:23 PM
I think it looks fantastic! Extra points because I love Beretta.

Kangspec
January 7, 2011, 06:20 AM
If you are happy with it, that's all it matters.

Folding front sight would be good touch.

jakk280rem
January 7, 2011, 11:55 AM
nice rifle. i'm using a magpul ms2 on mine and have mixed feelings about it. the suggestions for the vtac is a good one. the ms2 is well built, but the webbing used is slippery, and the claws on the sling are large. make sure whatever mounting hardware you use is large enough for them.

OregonJohnny
January 7, 2011, 12:47 PM
Thanks everyone!

Regarding a folding front sight: I really wanted the Magpul, but can't mount it on the gas block, due to heat and plastic. Other folding front sights made of steel or aluminum are a little pricey. The UTG removable sight was less than $20, and seems pretty well made. I actually like how the red dot co-witnesses with the top of the post.

As for a sling solution, here's what I'm thinking: My most comfortable and most likely mode of carrying the rifle will be to have the sling over my left shoulder, across my chest, and the rifle swept high and tight to the rear. In playing around with an old quick-adjust padded sling I have, using a short loop of paracord to temporarily have a front mount between the receiver and rail, I like the rear of the sling through the bottom slot of the Magpul MOE stock. With the quick-adjust strap, I can very easily go from a high rear sweep, almost climbers carry, to shouldering the rifle in about 2 seconds. It takes both hands, and a large sweeping movement, but it's pretty smooth. So I think I just need a simple sling loop on the rail, and I'll look around for an inexpensive QD 2-point sling with a similar quick-adjust strap.

Any recommendations? Has anyone tried the Gear Sector GS-2P? It looks just about perfect for my needs.

If you enjoyed reading about "Finally Finished My Dream AR-15!" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!