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Stupid question... swapping stocks on AR-15

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Frog48, Jan 4, 2007.

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  1. Frog48

    Frog48 Member

    Aug 7, 2006
    Somewhere down in Texas
    Hey yall. Probably a dumb question, but here goes...

    Is removing the original stock from an AR-15 difficult?

    I was considering buying an Olympic Arms "Plinker". I see on CheaperThanDirt that a collapsable 6-position stock, made by Leapers, can be had for a little over $40.

    Would someone with average mechanical ability have any problems swapping out the stocks?

  2. AK103K

    AK103K Member

    Dec 27, 2002
    You shouldnt have any troubles. You do need to watch out for two little springs and detents, one under the stock, that holds the lock pin and one under the grip (if you remove it) that holds the safety.

    You also need to take some care removing the tube and the pin what holds the buffer. Its held in place by the tube and will take off as you unscrew the tube, if your not paying attention. If your existing stock is an A2, there is also a spacer that may or may not stay in your stock when you pull it off. You only need take the top screw out to remove the stock.

    You will also need a wrench for the new stock, as it attaches a little differently.

    I've had a couple of the cheaper collapsing stocks and wasnt happy with them. They are for the most part chintzy and dont work very well. If you can look at one first, and better yet, shoot one, I think you'll see what I mean. Better to save for one of the better stocks. Personally, I like the M16/M16A1 stocks the best. The fixed stock is a much better stock.
  3. Bottom Gun

    Bottom Gun Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    Elgin, Arizona
    Very easy. First take the upper off.

    Only one screw ( the top one) to remove on the fixed stock. Be careful though. There is a spring for the take down pin detent (it runs horizontally forward to aft) and the little detent cap which retains the buffer is spring loaded as well. Be careful not to lose them or you will end up on your knees with your nose in the carpet in the classic gunsmith position.

    You will need to depress both springs as you screw the new buffer tube into place. Make sure the little buffer retainer cap is depressed as you thread the new tube into place and make sure it moves up and down freely before you tighten the castle nut on the new stock. If you thread the new tube in too far, it will cause the buffer detent to bind. If it binds, just back the tube out slightly until the buffer detent cap moves freely. The shoulder of the detent cap is held in place by the lip of the new tube. Test the installation by pushing the buffer back with you thumb. The detent cap should stay in place if the shoulder of the cap is captivated properly. This is kind of critical because if not properly captivated, it will spring out when you cycle the bolt carrier and may bend the spring. Don’t ask how I know this.

    That teardrop cap will rotate with the new tube as you thread it into place so you will need a thin piece of shim stock to depress the take down pin detent spring as you thread the new tube into place. Be careful not to bend the little springs as you do this. A third hand will be helpful if available but it’s not hard to do alone.

    I may not be using the correct terminology for the parts I’m describing but once you get started, you will see exactly what I am talking about.

    One of those inexpensive little spanner wrenches will help you tighten the castle nut on the new stock easily but you can still tighten it by tapping it GENTLY using a hammer with a brass punch, an empty case or nylon rod in one of the slots if you don’t have one. Be careful not to scratch it if you use the latter method.

    That’s all there is to it. Re-install the upper then hand cycle the action to make sure all is well.

    The final step is critical . . . . . . .take it out and shoot the heck out of it.

    I hope that helps. If you have trouble, email me and I will talk you through it if I’m at home at the time.


    - Ken
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