Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

AR-15 - Have I made a mistake?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by BryanP, Sep 27, 2003.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. BryanP

    BryanP Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2003
    Messages:
    2,420
    Location:
    Lavergne, TN
    Early this year I had an opportunity to buy a stripped AR-15 receiver at a extremely attractive price ($70 out the door). I didn't really know much about AR's at the time but I figured "What the heck." It came home and lived on a shelf.

    What I was told at the time was "These were made by the same company that makes Rock River's receivers, but the company who ordered them ended up cancelling the order. But they're already stamped with that company's name so they can't sell them to RRA. I've already built 3 AR's on these receivers and they all work great." The guy who told me this had no reason to lie to me - I know for a fact he wasn't making a profit, he was just passing it on to me from where he got it. I also know he builds AR's for himself and others as a hobby. Whether he knows what he's talking about past that I couldn't tell you.

    Again, without know much I ordered a DPMS lower parts kit off of Gunbroker and tossed it on the same shelf. Recently I bought a DPMS buttstock kit from another web store. I sat down with a book of instructions and put it together. Without an upper to test it with it appears to have all gone together properly and passes all of the safety-checks I can give it as just a lower.

    So anyway, here's the catch - the brand name on the receiver is Century Arms. Another company of which I knew almost nothing about. Hey, I've been a handgun guy, I'm only recently playing with rifles. So I start reading. What I read about Century Arms isn't pretty. Have I set myself up for a POS rifle here? I was planning to buy a DPMS 20" A2 upper to go with this soon. Basically it will be a DPMS except for the receiver itself.

    I understand that guns labeled Century Arms apparently have poor resale value. This isn't an issue with me as I have no plans to sell it.

    Oh, and just out of paranoia the last step before firing Round 1 from this thing once I buy the upper will be to take it to a competent gunsmith, hand him the rifle along with an appropriate amount of $ and say "Make sure I did this right and I'm not going to blow my face off the first time I squeeze the trigger."
     
  2. Engineer

    Engineer Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    190
    Location:
    NE Ohio
    Although Century's products have gotten a bad rap (and most times, rightfully so), you can rest assured that the Century Arms marked AR lower receivers are fine and generally well regarded - you shouldn't have any problems or concerns using it in a build.
     
  3. Kaylee

    Kaylee Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Messages:
    3,749
    Location:
    The Last Homely House
    Even if the lower was a POS, if the upper is fine would you really be looking at any safety issues? Other'n worse case a runaway from a misaligned sear or disconnector or something? Given that the barrel lockup and all is handled in the barrel extension, and the recoil force driven straight back into the stock, there's not much a bad lower could do to make a rifle "blow up your face" is there?

    -K
     
  4. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    6,950
    Location:
    Utah, inside the Terraformed Zone
    Especially since an AR lower receiver isn't really a stress-bearing part in the weapon. Almost all of the explosions and movement takes place in the upper. The lower is really just a housing for the trigger parts and such.

    If I were you, I'd go ahead and complete the build. I'd be suprised if you had any problems.
     
  5. Chugach

    Chugach Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    232
    Location:
    Anchorage, Alaska
    No experience with a Century Arms lower, but I do have a RRA lower. Just keep an eye on the hammer pin and make sure it doesn't "walk" out of the walls of the lower. Disconnector and sear then begin to function strangely. :scrutiny:

    In my case, it wasn't the lower's fault, it was the combo of hammer, hammer pin, and J spring that didn't want to play well together.

    In the unlikely case that you do experience "walk", Brownells has (you guessed it) an anti-walk hammer pin that's anchored by C clips on either side.

    Your lower should be fine.
     
  6. BryanP

    BryanP Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2003
    Messages:
    2,420
    Location:
    Lavergne, TN
    Kaylee says -

    Probably not, but when I'm setting off a controlled explosion that involves 50,000 PSI of white-hot plasma a few inches from my nose I'm going to get it checked out first. Call me wacky. :)

    Nightcrawler says -

    Oh, I plan to. I won't buy it this week. Instead I'll set the purchasing of the upper as a reward for reaching a goal such as putting another $2000 in the savings account or something.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2003
  7. gun-fucious

    gun-fucious Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    1,977
    Location:
    centre of the PA
    the white hot plasma is all contained by the workings in the upper reciever

    is the lower forged or cast?
    cast ones have cast in or raised lettering

    if all the pin holes are in the right place and it passes the safety checks
    its really good to go
     
  8. Onslaught

    Onslaught Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2003
    Messages:
    1,006
    Location:
    Georgia
    From what I've read, Century Arms has mostly earned it's spotty reputation from the FAL, CETME and AK lines. I read much less negative about their AR's.

    Good luck
     
  9. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Messages:
    18,994
    Proof is in the pudding. Assemble it and test fire it with a proven upper. If it works, who cares what the brand is?
     
  10. 444

    444 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    8,089
    Location:
    Ohio
    I have built four AR lowers on Century Arms recievers. I have friends that have built probably a dozen ARs between them on Century Arms lowers. They are good quality recievers that are as good as any out there.
    Building an AR is easy. You are not going to have any problems. There is no reason to take it to a gunsmith.
    You have a top quality lower, get an upper and enjoy it.

    The story your friend told you is true. These are forged lowers made by the same company that makes lowers for several other manufacturers that put their name on them. A lot of the many companies selling AR15s simply put them together, just like you did and sell them under their names. The parts are made elsewhere.
     
  11. TimW

    TimW Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    I know the receivers you're talking about. I helped 5 friend arrange to buy them...one guy built 3 guns with them. I personally was there when two other guys built their guns with them.

    What I would really be more worried about is the DMPS parts. I've sold two full parts sets and several other parts to a couple of guys, one who really knows AR stuff.

    In one kit, it was missing several small items, the forward assist plunger was out of spec and had to be machined and the selector/safety was out of spec and had to be machined. The other one was fine.

    The guy who bought a bolt...the bolt tail was out of spec and wouldn't fit ANY bolt carrier he had, from Bushmaster to Colt. then he bought a bolt and bolt carrier (DPMS). He took them out in his AR and got 3 light strikes out of 60 rounds. Replaced with B/BC from his other gun, went bang every time. Turns out the firing pin was out of spec (too short).

    So, in less than 3 months, I've had three separate orders out of spec. Not a very good start. In fact, I will likely drop DPMS as a supplier for it.

    Others may have had wonderful luck, I have not and am very disappointed. I'll be speaking to my rep next week.
     
  12. Redlg155

    Redlg155 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Messages:
    2,724
    Location:
    NW Florida
    If everything went together ok then more than likely you won't have any problems. Make sure you try inserting a mag and that it locks in place properly as well as being easy to remove as part of your checks.


    As for taking your AR to a gunsmith, most of them know less than you do about AR15s. So long as you went by the instructions and it passes the function test, it should be just fine. Also, make sure the legs on the hammer spring are over the trigger pin and not under. You can see the grooves in the pin where the legs rest. That keeps your trigger pin from walking out.



    Good Shooting
    Red
     
  13. telewinz

    telewinz Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    2,305
    Location:
    Ohio
    Relax....DPMS made the lowers for Century. Have you heard of the C-15 ? Century Arms put out their version of the A2 AR15 using Colt uppers ( South American turn-ins) and DPMS lowers using Colt parts. I was fortunate enough to pick-up one of their A2's, its every bit as good as my Colt SP1 at a fraction of the cost of a Colt. If I run across another C-15 I plan on buying that one also.
     
  14. Rob96

    Rob96 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Messages:
    1,504
    Location:
    Allentown, PA
    Actually, DPMS doesn't make the lower receiver. They are made by the same company that makes them for DPMS and RRA. As for the out of spec parts. DPMS gets their parts from the same companies that the other makers buy from. As far as I know, Oly is the only maker that produses all of their own parts in house.
     
  15. BryanP

    BryanP Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2003
    Messages:
    2,420
    Location:
    Lavergne, TN
    Thanks for the info everyone. As I say, I'm a bit of a newbie to AR's. I bought the stripped receiver on a whim and it sat on the shelf for a while. Then I had an opportunity to fire an AR at one of the Nashville get togethers. (thanks to *mumbleiforgetyournamejustnow*) and decided I really wanted one. I've been reading up every since and buying parts.
     
  16. cookie

    cookie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Messages:
    105
    Location:
    Mid-Atlantic Coast
    If everything fits together well, it'll probably make a decent rifle and last you a long time.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page