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Building an AR...

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by 22LRFan, Mar 23, 2009.

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  1. 22LRFan

    22LRFan Member

    Oct 26, 2008
    SE PA
    I have been considering getting rid of my Yugo SKS for some time, but I didn't really know what I would put it towards. Last time I was at my local gun shop, I saw a striped AR-15 lower receiver. For some reason it caught my eye. I guess I enjoy the idea of a project where I can build an AR to have whatever options I choose. I figured I could trade in my SKS and use the extra cash towards purchasing parts for what would be my new AR project.

    Now the downsides of this scheme. I have never handled, let alone shot an AR-15/M-16 style rifle. I'm low on funding so there is no telling when this project will be complete (well complete enough to shoot, I can always upgrade) and I would be out of a SHTF gun for a while.

    My question for you guys and gals is whether building an AR is too over the head of someone new to EBRs? I realize I'd have to do research on the ins and outs in order to put the thing together, but would I be biting off more than I chew? Or is there enough info out there to learn as I go?
  2. Foton

    Foton Member

    Nov 5, 2007
    Building an AR

    Quire simple really. Brownells has a DVD on it that is very comprehensive. Dont need to buy many many specialized tools. You're biggest problem these days will be finding the various parts.
  3. shotgunjoel

    shotgunjoel Member

    Nov 15, 2008
  4. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

    Jun 5, 2006
    In a part of Utah that resembles Tattooine.
    Why get rid of your SKS? I just finished Tapcoing my SKS and it is definitely my go-to SHTF rifle.

    Assembling a lower takes about 30 minutes. Anyone can do it. Go to Brownells.com and order their free AR catalog. I wouldn't get too hung up on tiger stripes, even if you buy that lower, it doesn't mean you can match the upper to it later. You can buy and build the lower now, and nickle and dime your way to the upper you want.
  5. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

    Feb 27, 2009
    DFW (formerly Brazos County), Texas
    Could be that is a 'stripped' lower rather than a 'striped' one--not that there's anything wrong with that<g>

    Hardest part about an AR build is in deciding what you want. OP will likely want to get some loaner time on different kinds if at all possible.

    Service rifle, varminters, carbines, anti-zombie rigs, even mall-ninja--the choices are so many.

    Me, I'd be inclined to an M-4-sized carbine, but without fixed front sight (flip up BUIS instead), a plain free-float handguard, an a magpul stock. Harder quiestions woulf be gas vs. op rod and plain&simple rail versus multi-function LaRue.
  6. WNTFW

    WNTFW Member

    Jul 16, 2006
    Depends on the degree you want to go to.
    I look at it this way:
    If you get the stripped lower now you have the AR15 and everything else does not need an FFL. If you can take the gun down, clean & reassemble it (Detail Strip) you can "build" it. The up side is you can spec out what you want and even buy used parts. You will not likely have much in terms of warranty. You may not save any money either. All the answers have change recently and even vary by location.

    I would not suggest putting a barrel on an upper at this point

    Like CapnMac said the decisions will be hardest part.
  7. RP88

    RP88 Member

    Jan 1, 2008
    Agreed. The 'building' is mostly done on the upper by the manufacturer themselves.

    All you have to usually do is put on the buttstock and the lower parts to the receiver. Very easy stuff that you can do with opposable thumbs, a small hammer, pliers, and something that can makeshift as a hole punch.

    You can save money usually when you buy the upper separately, then buy a stripped lower and parts kit and assemble yourself. The downside is the lack of warranty, but if you have even a novice amount of knowledge, you won't really be able to break your AR.
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