.22 AR-15 Project: What do y'all think?


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Newbie22
February 2, 2012, 08:58 PM
Hello fellow High-Roaders,

I think I've finally settled on a .22 AR build that meets all of my wants and needs. I thought I would go ahead and post here in case anyone has advice, parts I could find for cheaper than I have, parts they've had good/bad experiences with, etc. So here goes.

A note on use. This rifle isn't meant for serious competition shooting, hard abuse, home defense, or the like. It's more along the lines of the ultimate range toy, one that mimics the look, feel, and controls of an actual AR as closely as possible while shooting relatively cheap rimfire ammo.

Parts:

Bushmaster stripped lower: $125 from a local gun shop
DPMS lower parts kit: $75
CMMG M4 LEP Dedicated .22 Upper w/ forward assist + bolt hold open: $450
UTG Fixed A2 Buttstock: $55
Bolt Hold Open Magazines: $28/mag
Yankee Hill Machine Muzzle Brake: $25
Cost of having muzzle brake permanently welded in place and bayonet lug removed (Connecticut AWB :cuss:): $110

Total: $868 plus shipping, taxes and the like.

Opinions, Comments, Questions, Concerns are all welcome. Please let me know if you see something I'm missing, something that could be found for cheaper, or something you've had a bad experience with. Thanks!

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68wj
February 2, 2012, 09:11 PM
I would look into getting a Plum Crazy lower instead. For around $140 you get a complete lower assembly with all parts. http://www.joeboboutfitters.com/SearchResults.asp?Search=plum+crazy

jakerr15
February 2, 2012, 09:11 PM
Nice! Does that upper have fixed sights or are you going after market?

Newbie22
February 2, 2012, 09:22 PM
Nice! Does that upper have fixed sights or are you going after market?
The one I'm looking at is a flattop upper with a railed gas block. So if I ever wanted flip up irons they're always an option, but for now I think I'm going to stick with one of the cheapo rimfire red-dots I have lying around. Or maybe I'll go ahead and find a use for that Simmons 3-9 collecting dust. I guess we'll have to wait and see! :D

ugaarguy
February 2, 2012, 09:23 PM
I went thru this recently. I used a similar CMMG upper plus:
SAA Stripped Lower from Karri's Guns $60 (http://www.karrisguns.com/new-ar15-stripped-lower-receiver)
And a PSA Classic Lower Build Kit. You'll need their A2 LBK (http://palmettostatearmory.com/index.php/ar-15-05/lower-parts/build-kits/a2-rifle-build-kit.html) to get the fixed stock you need.
I'd rather have a PSA lower parts kit than DPMS. I've also been thoroughly unimpressed with UTG's quality, and would rather have a USGI spec stock kit like the one included in the PSA Lower Build Kit.

Last, the upper you want is $470 direct from CMMG. I'd call or e-mail and see what they'd charge to set it up in a ban compliant configuration. It may actually save you some money having built that way from the factory.

Newbie22
February 2, 2012, 09:25 PM
I would look into getting a Plum Crazy lower instead. For around $140 you get a complete lower assembly with all parts. http://www.joeboboutfitters.com/SearchResults.asp?Search=plum+crazy
Sadly, here in CT that collapsible stock would put me over the "banned" features limit. I appreciate the suggestion though.

Newbie22
February 2, 2012, 09:34 PM
Last, the upper you want is $470 direct from CMMG. I'd call or e-mail and see what they'd charge to set it up in a ban compliant configuration. It may actually save you some money having built that way from the factory.

ugaarguy,

I'll definitely take the PSA kit into consideration. It won't save me a ton of money, but if the quality is better than what I have currently it seems like a good route to go. As for the CMMG upper, I just realized its actually the M4 LEP, which is $20 less. That $110 is actually their price quote; I'm going to send them that muzzle brake and they're going to do all the ban compliance work for me. What do you think of your current setup? Any reviews on the upper in particular?

ugaarguy
February 2, 2012, 10:58 PM
I built two of them as Christmas presents, one for my sister & niece, the other for my brother-in-law and nephew. Brother in law reports that everything works great as long he avoids really cheap bulk pack ammo like I told him to.

I used a CMMG bbl & collar on a stripped upper and an old Ceiner Atchisson kit I already had to build my own dedicated .22 LR upper. Everything assembled easily, and functioned perfectly on that build. That was why I chose CMMG's fully assembled dedicated uppers for the builds for family. Accuracy on mine has been minute of red dot to 50 yards. The WASP black nitride coating looks nice, and makes cleanup easy.

I know the PSA lower build kit isn't really any cost savings, but the parts are known quality. Hopefully the less expensive, but equal quality lower helps you out some too.

saenzrich
February 2, 2012, 11:52 PM
I just picked up a 22 M4 le with the 16" wasp finish. I put it on a Cmmg stripped lower with a Palmetto Moe LPK. The upper I got off of gunbroker for 290.00 new...it's just the plane jane M4 le with the standard bolt and no upgrades (stainless bolt, BHOA, forward assist....). I took it to the range this week and ran about 400 rounds through it with only 1 FTF and 1 FTE. I was pleasantly surprised on how accurate and fun this thing was to shoot. I shot about 14.00 worth of ammo that would have costed me almost 100.00 through my .223.

I did alot of reading before I purchased and pricewise Cmmg was the way to go. You will be happy.

Rail Driver
February 2, 2012, 11:58 PM
Sadly, here in CT that collapsible stock would put me over the "banned" features limit. I appreciate the suggestion though.
You can swap out the collapsible stock with the A2 stock you planned to order and still save money vs. the LPK and stripped bushmaster lower. Plus you can make a few bucks back when you sell the collapsible stock.

BCRider
February 3, 2012, 12:18 AM
Would an AR build of this sort give you something more than the already available similar style Ruger SR22, S&W M&P15-22 or the tactical style Remington 597 does not have? I know they are not faithful copies of what an AR looks like from the outside but still, they hold pretty much like an AR what with the grips and quad forward rails.

benzy2
February 3, 2012, 12:58 AM
And they run half the price.

Girodin
February 3, 2012, 01:59 AM
I would look into getting a Plum Crazy lower instead. For around $140 you get a complete lower assembly with all parts.

If going with a polymer lower why not go for an NFA brand one for $99 instead?

Would an AR build of this sort give you something more than the already available similar style Ruger SR22, S&W M&P15-22 or the tactical style Remington 597 does not have?

Given that the OP stated:

t's more along the lines of the ultimate range toy, one that mimics the look, feel, and controls of an actual AR as closely as possible . . .

Two of those on your list do not mimic the feel or controls and at and barely mimic the look. If one wants a trainer the Ruger or Remington would be a very poor choice.

I can't speak to the CMMG upper but the tac sol .22 upper I have is much higher quality than the S&W. For me it also makes a much better trainer because I can put it on the exact same lower I use for my go to AR and mimic the controls very closely and practice with the exact trigger pull reset etc. With a similar lower it is also close on weight and feel.

I looked at all the .22 ARs and feel that buying a .22 upper while a bit more expensive ultimately gave me a better end result and suits my purposes much better.

68wj
February 3, 2012, 08:06 AM
Would an AR build of this sort give you something more than the already available similar style Ruger SR22, S&W M&P15-22 or the tactical style Remington 597 does not have? I know they are not faithful copies of what an AR looks like from the outside but still, they hold pretty much like an AR what with the grips and quad forward rails.
Yes, the ability remove the .22 upper and pin on a centerfire option (.223, 6.8 spc, .458 socom, ........)

Newbie22
February 3, 2012, 05:17 PM
Brother in law reports that everything works great as long he avoids really cheap bulk pack ammo like I told him to.

Thanks, that's a good point I hadn't even thought about. Any ammo recommendations? Found anything your particular setup has really liked?

BCRider
February 3, 2012, 10:55 PM
Fair enough. And I totally understand the desire to most accurately emulate the center fire versions. I was really wondering if the EXACT look and feel was worth the extra cost vs the "almost" look and feel. Apparently it is to the more discerning AR fans

Newbie22
February 3, 2012, 11:21 PM
Fair enough. And I totally understand the desire to most accurately emulate the center fire versions. I was really wondering if the EXACT look and feel was worth the extra cost vs the "almost" look and feel. Apparently it is to the more discerning AR fans
The whole inspiration for the project hinged around two considerations. First, that I had a pressing desire for an AR, but knew I would never shoot it if I had to dish out so much money for center fire. Second, that if I was going to justify spending a sizable chunk of change on a new rifle I might as well give myself the flexibility to upgrade to the real deal if I ever wanted to. Why spend $500 bucks for a S&W that (in my opinion) feels more like holding a toy than a firearm when so much more versatility can be had for not so much more cost?

alemonkey
February 3, 2012, 11:32 PM
.22 AR's are more fun than you could ever believe. I have a 6.5" CMMG dedicated .22 on my registered SBR lower. It took about 2-300 rounds to really break in, but now it runs like a top with Federal bulk pack. Obviously the sight radius is so short that the iron sights aren't real accurate, but with the red dot my 8 year old daughter can consistently ping a steel swinger that's about 3" diameter from a bench at 25 yards. Now she's after me to build a pink one for her :D. I'm planning on building a 16" one for her eventually, probably on a polymer lower.

http://i1226.photobucket.com/albums/ee412/alemonkey/IMG_1761.jpg

Girodin
February 5, 2012, 04:28 PM
I really like that .22 SBR.

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