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Want an AR for next purchase..need help

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by tmette, Jan 3, 2007.

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  1. tmette

    tmette member

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    Ok, I'm new to the whole AR thing and I am seeing threads about buying the parts and assembling my own. I would love to know how to put one together, but I'm afraid I would screw something up. I wouldn't want an AR that costs about $1000, just something to plink around with friends.

    I had looked at the Armlite AR-180B and I like the fact that it uses standard AR-15 mags so that tells me that if I decide too get accessories for it, or customize it later down the road I shouldn't have very much trouble finding parts that fit it right? The only thing I didn't like about the AR-180B are the looks. To me it doesn't look like a standard AR, seems like the barrel is longer or something and makes it look off balance..I dunno, maybe its just me.

    Also, what kind of ammo does it take? Is it somewhat inexpensive? I think I saw it took .223 or something like that? Thanks for any help or info on this!
     
  2. GreenFurniture

    GreenFurniture Member

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    AR15 gear will not fit on an AR-180. They share mags and that's about it.

    As far as the AR-15 goes, you can't go wrong with RRA, Bushmaster, Olympic or DPMS.

    Buy a lower, slap an upper on it and off you go.

    Also Olympic Arms make the "Plinker" which goes for around $650 or so, check those out.
     
  3. Chipperman

    Chipperman Member

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  4. tmette

    tmette member

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    So there's nothing really complicated about buying an "upper" and a "lower"...and that's all I'll need? Sounds almost too easy here haha. Does a Bushmaster lower fit with an Olympic upper?
     
  5. cracked butt

    cracked butt Member

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    AR-15 lowers and uppers are interchangeable*- they are simply put together by aligning the upper and lower and pushing in 2 pins.

    *there are some compatability issues with Colt receivers and other brands, but there are ways around that problem too.
     
  6. Nhsport

    Nhsport Member

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    The Colt ARs have some non standard pin sizes,there are offset adapters that let you mix colt with non colt stuff but generally Colt goes only with Colt and any other brand works with anything else
     
  7. tmette

    tmette member

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    Can I order the upper and lower receivers online, or do I have to order them from a gun store somewhere? I also really don't know anything about the reputation of these brands, what do you guys suggest for the receivers? I want something that won't be over $750 perferred. I am just going to use it to go out and shoot whenever I want. I also don't know about what caliber size to get?

    Edit: Am I going to be running into any trouble with the laws? I live in Illinois and seems to me this state is decently strict on gun control. Anyone on here own an AR and are from Illinois?
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2007
  8. GreenFurniture

    GreenFurniture Member

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    You can order and have everything online, and shipped right to your house except the lower.

    For the lower you can order it online but you'll have to do a transfer at an FFL.
     
  9. dm1333

    dm1333 Member

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    I don't know about the gun laws in Illinois but if it is legal for you to buy an AR the only part you need to go through a FFL (federal firearms license) to get is the lower since that is the part that is considered the "rifle". You can buy the upper or any other parts you need online, over the phone, etc. I'd recommend getting one in 5.56MM since the ammo is fairly cheap.
     
  10. cracked butt

    cracked butt Member

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    Not sure about Illinois laws, but I would definately talk to a local FFL holder about ordering a lower receiver before ordering an Upper. An Upper can be shipped right to your house, but a lower has to be shipped to an FFL.

    If there is some sort of local ban on AR-15s, you don't want to screw yourself by buying a useless upper if you can't legally own the lower.
     
  11. Mtdew

    Mtdew Member

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    dosen't Illinois have a AWB?
     
  12. Browns Fan

    Browns Fan Member

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    Interesting and very timely thread!

    I just received a complete M4 lower from Ameetec. I am wondering if it would be feasible to get a Stag upper for it (when I have saved up the money first:p ), or do I have to get an Ameetec upper?

    The Ameetec lower looks great as far as fit and finish go... I just cant wait to slap on an upper and let'er rip!
     
  13. toecutter

    toecutter Member

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    Putting an AR together really isn't that big a deal. While I am pretty practiced at it, and have some specialized tools, after laying all the parts out, I can slap a lower together in about 5 minutes. I highly recommend getting a few good manuals, and the big poster bushmaster sells with the exploded parts view. Since the start of the year a lot of bare lowers have been coming into california. Both working at the range, and working as a gunsmith I have assembled, reassembled, repaired, and refitted a lot of guns that were not put together right.

    Things to remember:

    1) If you have any left over parts, you did something wrong (one guy didn't put in the disconnector spring, so it was full-auto)

    2) If you are having light firing pin strikes you put the hammer spring in backwards

    3) There are several types and sizes of pins, there are roll pins and detent pins, they are not interchangeable

    4) When putting in the grip screw, put it in first with the grip off, this will "chase" the threads and will make it easier to get your grip installed without cross threading or stripping (lubricants help this effort greatly)

    5) After you have put the lower together perform a function check. This involves putting the hammer in the "cocked" position, pull the trigger and ease the hammer down. Keep pressure on the trigger, now push the hammer all the way back, removing your hand, slowly release the trigger, it should snap forward slightly when the disconnector releases and it is then caught by the sear. Repeat this test several times. If it fails at any point, you have done something wrong, review your diagram, take everything apart and do it right.

    6) When assembling certain parts you need a tool called a "roll pin punch" (this is especially true for the roll pin that holds in the bolt catch) This will make your life much easier, and will prevent you from scratching your reciever.

    The AR-180 is a very different beast from the AR-15. In some ways it was a more advanced system. It was also designed by eugene stoner as an answer to some of the shortcomings of the AR-15. In my opinion it is a very nice firearm. I'm not sure if it truely provides a better answer, since in my assessment, the AR-15 is a damn good rifle. But, it does have some advantages. If you are still looking at the AR-180 platform, you may wish to check out the robinson arms family of guns. Thier products are loosely based on the AR-180, but they have some modifications that they have done.

    I have fired the robinson arms versions in full auto, and they are probably one of the nicest handling full autos I have had the pleasure of playing with. They are equally nice in thier semi-auto counterparts.

    If you are looking for an AR-15 series, in my opinion the nicest lowers are made by Mega (gator-15) and SunDevil (SD-15) these usually retail for under $200 (at least in cali) and are made by machining solid blocks of aluminum. The fit and finish on these is impeccable. Otherwise, I might recommend the Spike Tactical, I have seen these for as low as $100. As far as I'm concerned all of the forged lowers are created equally, why pay more for one?

    If you add to that the lower parts kit ($50-70) and the stock ($30-100) and an upper (~$500-600) you can put yourself together a nice rifle for about 7-800 dollars.

    So far I've had the best luck with STAG uppers. They are fairly low cost, and easily as good as the more expensive parts offered by bushmaster. (I've owned both) The one that currently concerns me however is apparently Model1sales (another provider of parts) has been having the bolt crack where the cam pin goes through. I'm not sure if this has been addressed at all, but I have heard of at least 5 instances, and seen 3 personally. But they do offer very competitive prices on parts... So Buyer beware...
     
  14. Browns Fan

    Browns Fan Member

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    Guys! Finally got my Stag upper!

    Oh, yeah! It fits my Ameetec lower like it was made for it, even the color is exact. I cant wait until I get to go to the range, maybe, I'll try to fit it in tomorrow. I cant believe how awesome it looks!
     
  15. GreenFurniture

    GreenFurniture Member

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    Hate to break it to you but you're out of luck. You live in Illinois and AR15s are no-nos there.
     
  16. only1asterisk

    only1asterisk member

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    tmette,

    Don't give up. Let me look at the IL situation and see you you can do.

    David
     
  17. Prince Yamato

    Prince Yamato Member

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    That's incorrect. You can't own ARs in certain locales, but throughout most of Illinois, they are legal. You just need your FOID card to purchase the rifle.
     
  18. only1asterisk

    only1asterisk member

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    So far as I can determine, this is the case for the time being.

    David
     
  19. only1asterisk

    only1asterisk member

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    Assuming it's legal in you locality, what kind of AR are you looking for? If you really want to try to build it yourself, I'm sure we can find you some help.

    David
     
  20. DogBonz

    DogBonz Member

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    Buy a DPMS

    Their quality is on par with Bushmaster, but IMHO, their fit and finish is *JUST* a little bit bit better. For what 99% of civilians will do with an AR, DPMS will be more than enough, and cost about $100 less. You can find a nice DPMS with 2 30rd mags and a cleaning kit for about $700.
     
  21. only1asterisk

    only1asterisk member

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    Even if decide you don't want to build you own from a stipped lower, you might want to look at buying the two halfs separately. You can save some money and deny the feds $40 worth of FET.

    David
     
  22. illini52

    illini52 Member

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    You are incorrect. As long as you are not in Cook county, you are OK. There are a few other towns in that area that have bans too.
     
  23. AlaskaErik

    AlaskaErik Member

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    It would seem to me that it would be a lot harder for an AR-15 to be fired full auto than by just failing to put in one part.
     
  24. Glockfan.45

    Glockfan.45 member

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    I guess I'm a felon as I have a few ARs here in Daleyland :neener: . Outside of Cook County, and some other little towns who's names I cannot remember they are good to go.........for now. :uhoh:
     
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