Assembling AR Upper


January 10, 2011, 02:36 AM
So I've decided to build my AR upper. I've done some research but want to make sure I end up ordering the correct thing. So far, from what I've found, I will need a stripped receiver, upper receiver parts kit, bolt carrier assembly, free float handguard, gas block, gas line and barrel. What am I missing? Also, is there anything I need to be aware of before ordering.. to make sure everything is going to fit? I know the gas line and such needs to be the correct length. I'm going with a 20" or 24" stainless barrel. Are there any brands to stay away from? What barrels would y'all recommend for the $250 range? I'm looking to stay under $600 as best I can for this upper build.

Sorry for all the questions but I'm need of some detailed information. This upper will be going on my Double Star lower assembled with a Stag lpk. I don't want to go cheap on everything but I obviously can't afford top-of-the-line. Just want the ultimate varmint rifle.

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January 10, 2011, 06:56 AM
You Tube

January 10, 2011, 08:21 AM
$250 < ultimate varmint rifle barrel. More like $450 for a chambered Krieger barrel. The "ultimate" for a $250 barrel means its likely just a well made 20", that's all. Check the MOA guarantee of the maker and surf for user posts on it to see what you really get. Since varmints are small, a 1/2 MOA barrel at 400m means a 2" group, the prairie dog still has a sporting chance. Windage alone will amount to another 2" on a gusty day.

Add a charging handle. Since it's a varmint gun, the standard GI is all you need.

Be careful in choosing a free float. The whole point is to disconnect the strain of a sling/bipod from moving the muzzle of the barrel. That means it doesn't need to be an uber tactical tube costing $$$. The simplest tube with the easiest attachment at the barrel nut is going to do. All the free float does in insure the barrel shoots with the least interference from you, it doesn't add any more accuracy that it inherently has. Free float makers know this and can't(won't) guarantee any MOA improvement.

You're better off with a 1/4 MOA match barrel and handguards than a 2MOA barrel and free float, spend money on the barrel first. You don't have to sling up tight and move the barrel around.

January 10, 2011, 10:08 AM
I'd say go with a Model 1 sales free float tube for $40 and apply the savings to the barrel. I'd also take a hard look at the Bravo Company SS410 20" barrel. These barrels shoot very well. You'd be hard pressed to find a barrel that shoots better, especially in the $300 price range. I know that there are many barrels that will shoot accurately, but you can separate a good barrel from the rest by how it shoots when it gets hot. My BCM barrel didn't shift in point of impact when it got hot. The groups opened up a bit when it got really hot, but the POI didn't shift.

I'd also skip on the stripped upper and separate parts kit. Just get an upper with the dust cover and forward assist already installed.

January 10, 2011, 10:36 AM
Get a good book. The internet is wonderful if you don't mind spending all day looking for what you need. Stopping in the middle of the build-up to find something else you need, all the while sifting through a lot of unsubstantiated opinion. Get a book, skip the BS.

Get a barrel nut wrench that fits onto a half inch drive ratchet and properly torque your barrel nut with a torque wrench.

January 10, 2011, 03:28 PM
Thanks for the input everyone. Does anyone have any recommendations for a quality, low-priced upper receiver?

January 10, 2011, 03:32 PM
del-ton and yankee Hill manufacturing (YHM) are low priced good quality

January 10, 2011, 03:42 PM
Thanks, I have been looking at the YHM uppers. I've heard good things for the price of under $100. If I bought that upper with the forward assist and feed ramps, I'm guessing I won't need to purchase an upper receiver parts kit? Would all I need be a charging handle?

January 10, 2011, 03:47 PM
Make sure that if you get an upper with m4 feedramps, you get a barrel with an extension to match. I would just get an upper without the m4 feed ramp cuts for a varmint build.

January 10, 2011, 04:47 PM
I wouldn't cut corners on things where it doesn't save you a bunch of money. I've built uppers using Bushmaster, Bravo Company, RRA, Spike's, Vltor and Daniel Defense (that I can remember) and the Daniel Defense was the nicest in terms of fit and finish. I got my last one complete with dust cover and forward assist for $125 from Midway.

The last time I checked, had some good prices on Daniel Defense stuff. You could do a lot worse than Daniel Defense.

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