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Your thoughts on this please.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by bullseye308, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. bullseye308

    bullseye308 Member

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  2. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    It’s low budget parts, and will be a low budget AR.

    Good luck.
     
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  3. LoonWulf

    LoonWulf Member

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    I bought an upper from PSA and it was well put together and shot well. Ive used some small parts that people have given me for some builds, and generally i found them to be well made if unspectacular.
    Ive also had zero issue with my cheap ar builds. Ive only got about 300rnds on my plastic fantastic build, but even thats been running fine.
    The one word of advice id give is check everything as your doing the install, make sure it all fits together properly.
    On my Anderson lower the buffer retaining ...thingy....was a bit too far back, so the buffer would contact the pin on it every time it came forward. Eventually it bent it over enough that I noticed. I had a buddy relieve the buffer to clear the pin and that fixed it, but i bet if id complained to Anderson they would have replaced it.

    IMO an AR built with cheap parts MAY ware out sooner than one built with top of the line parts, but its pretty rare for even a cheap AR build to not function correctly from the get go.
     
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  4. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    [QUOTE="LoonWulf, post: 10875220, member: ]

    IMO an AR built with cheap parts MAY ware out sooner than one built with top of the line parts, but its pretty rare for even a cheap AR build to not function correctly from the get go.[/QUOTE]

    .... yeah there’s more than enough threads on this site to contradict the rarity of home brew AR’s not working right.
     
  5. Hokie_PhD

    Hokie_PhD Member

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    Generally I’d agree but I’ve seen several impressive torture tests of the low buck PSA uppers that I won’t lose sleep on how many rounds they can handle.

    If they haven’t changed that upper, then The barrel is decent, nothing to write home about or to make posts that will impress the Internet snobs. But it’s solid, shoots well and will last at least as long as most and longer than many.

    The handguard sucks, it’s just a bare bones non-free float that is functional and as basic as you can get. It gets the job done but it’s about as inspiring as your typical silver or beige mid sized sedan.

    The rest of the parts on the upper are all typical PSA. Again, nothing fancy just good solid reliable parts that work.

    I bought one of these uppers a few years ago, and the only issue I’ve had with it is that I don’t get to shoot it enough, and that I’ve since built a much nicer one.That said I’ve fired a couple thousand rounds through it and it shouts well.

    I also have used the PSA parts kit and also have one of their complete lowers. If the stock is the same as the one used on their lowers like the handguard it’s as bare bones as you can get. It works but it just has a cheap feel.

    So, for a bare bones basic AR, you’ll probably be very happy if you understand the parts are high quality for budget parts. If however you expect anything fancy you’ll be very disappointed. And if you have no expectations, you’ll be very surprised that PSA makes some good inexpensive parts.
     
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  6. MistWolf

    MistWolf Member

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    PSA kits come with a carbine weight buffer which is too light. Get an H or, better yet, an H2 buffer.

    The spring rate of the extractor spring is too low and wears out quickly. Replace it with a Colt extractor spring.

    I'd also suggest replacing the action spring with a Sprinco blue spring.
     
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  7. badkarmamib

    badkarmamib Member

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    It is a perfect budget kit to assemble a basic AR, either as a "last-resort" rifle, loaner gun, "just-so-I-have-an-AR" gun, or a platform to shoot, decide what works and what doesn't, and upgrade as you have time/money/desire.

    The backbone should suit well. Furniture is cheap, with a myriad of options. The optic is serviceable (I have 2 of the original StrikeFire, still going strong). You should be pleased with it, as is, or as you upgrade. Most importantly, HAVE FUN WITH IT!!!
     
  8. GunnyUSMC

    GunnyUSMC Member

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    I have used PSA basic kits to build many AR’s.
    Some stayed basic and some got dressed up a little.
    The parts in the kit are good parts. They are milspec.
    I had a friend that was a Colt Fanboy and he lover his Colts because, as he would say, they were built better.
    He had me build him a basic PSA Freedom kit for him to have as a truck gun. The first AR pic is the gun I built.
    He put his grandson in an AR class, using his Colt. The Colt started having trouble early in the class. His grandson ended up using the budget PSA rifle in the two day class and put almost 1000 rounds down Range without any issues.
    The sight that comes with your kit sales for right at $180 so, you got a pretty good deal.
    Put it together and enjoy it.
    338519D2-5BCC-46D7-8373-AD62876F16BC.jpeg
    859C55C1-4B76-40CF-97CF-093BCD301330.jpeg
    324E92AC-B42A-409E-A78A-72CDB8EC1FDE.jpeg 331249E2-3106-4F27-8820-D7C5505C25E7.jpeg 8EFE5106-6394-4D29-87C3-6384DBDB281B.jpeg View attachment 795974 A00CFBF7-B09B-40CC-BDAF-723F4834275E.jpeg 3C3ED30D-C409-4930-93F8-0A791E25FA76.jpeg 0569E5B5-A830-4939-9BF0-B82D583C7020.jpeg
     
  9. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    You ordered the kit with hope - expectation - to surpass your Diamondback. Assuming you got the Anderson lower for $50, you’ll have $450 into the PSA including the $180 optic, whereas I would guess you got the DB15 for $500-550, sans optic.

    What are your expectations for the PSA - what needs to be better than your DB15?
     
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  10. Bushpilot

    Bushpilot Member

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    I think I've had the same upper as the OP's from PSA... I had no problems or complaints except for the hand guard which I replaced...

    Some who are supposedly "in the know" might find this runs counter to the accepted dogma but I don't buy into the whole "low end, budget vs high end" thing when it comes to AR's. The "return" or improvement you get by paying 2x, 3x, or 4x the price of a "low end AR for a high end AR is usually insignificant and cosmetic for the most part, especially on a rifle running semi auto... I've actually seen many reputedly "High end" AR's that were temperamental or problematic..... I think this might have something to do with volume. When you make and sell thousands of the same thing, which in this case is inexpensive AR's and AR parts, you tend to eventually get all the bugs worked out..... I've also seen low end AR's that shot just as accurately as some high end AR's.......... Now there are some companies that sell inexpensive AR's that are better than others. Diamond Back is not one I'd recommend... Stick with a reputable company and you'll get a good AR whether it is high end or low end... I have no problem with PSA and would buy from them again and probably will...

    Good Luck with your build...
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2018
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  11. BSA1

    BSA1 Member

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    I purchased a PSA Freedom build kit with Magpul furniture for $350.00 (with free shipping) which I built on a Anderson lower that cost me $40.00. I splurged and brought a Magpul ASAP endplate with a swivel for $30.00 so I can use a sling. My total cost is $425.00.

    I was not happy with how the gas key was staked on the BCG and Magpul exchanged it for their premium BCG.

    I built this gun mainly to see what I would get out of a budget gun. What can I say? This gun has far, far exceeded my expectations. It is very accurate and has functioned 100%. As commented I would go head-to-head against a Colt anytime.

    Freedom is PSA middle of the line of parts. As commented they are mil-spec and, imo, good quality. Just to answer the question I may do another build like this in FDE if they run it on sale cheap enough. (I have two builds in progress that I need to get off of my bench first).
     
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  12. someguy2800

    someguy2800 Member

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    With the optic it looks like you got a really really good deal there.
     
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  13. redneck2

    redneck2 Member

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    PSA offers an enhanced trigger. About $30 IIRC and better than a typical trigger if you want something better and not add a lot of cost.
     
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  14. bullseye308

    bullseye308 Member

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    The hand guards will be replaced soon with a free float quad rail, and I’ll look into the buffer & extractor spring. Don’t really have any expectations except that I will get more familiar with the platform and hope it shoots straight. The Diamondback that I have was $399 a couple years ago. The dealer was apparently doing too many things at once when he quoted me a price( I think his cost) but he did come out even later on.

    Gunny, nice builds. Always nice to see what you show, gives me goals to reach for. :)

    Badkarma, I’m planning to play with this one and see what I can make it do. I’ve never “built” one before and this will be a fun experience and will hopefully make me less hesitant to change parts around since I will know how it goes together. Should be nothing but fun.

    Varminterror, my diamondback runs fine and is pretty accurate, I’m hoping this one is just as good or better. If it does I’ll be happy, if not I will get a chance to really learn the interaction of the parts and how each can affect accuracy.
     
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  15. badkarmamib

    badkarmamib Member

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    Since this is your first build,

    1) Find a clear diagram or video of what each part is.
    2) Lay everything out before you start.
    3) Pay particular attention to the orientation of the hammer, trigger, and disconnector springs.
    4) Put a strip of electrical tape on the side of the lower when installing the bolt catch roll pin, to keep from scuffing the lower.
    5) Install the front (pivot) pin inside a gallon ziploc bag, to keep track of the detent if (see:when) it goes flying.
    6) Support the ears on the lower when driving in the pin for the trigger guard.
    7) No matter what you hear, definitely stake the castle nut. If you think you might change it later, stake it lightly, but stake it.

    It sounds daunting, but, once you do one, all others (trust me, there will be others) will go together in half the time.
     
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  16. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    The accuracy is in the upper, not the lower. The fire control group is really the only “mechanism” in the lower, and it’s just a matter of two pins and remembering not to install the hammer spring backwards. Control is in the lower, not accuracy. Assembling an AR can be done in an hour, especially if you’re talking about a pre-assembled upper.

    Personally, I have never recommended folks buy a low cost, mil-spec carbine with the intention of rebuilding it. Buying parts twice always costs more than buying once.
     
  17. LoonWulf

    LoonWulf Member

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    I disagree, for the number of home builds that are out there the failure rate is fairly low.
    I mean look at Gunnys post, hes probably got more home builds pictured there than ive seen threads about highend factory ARs this year.

    Let me also separate my response a little as well.

    There are alot of home builds with low end parts, and part kits, that run fine.
    There are also some home builds with highend parts, and parts kits that choke. Buying expensive parts does NOT Guarantee a build will run perfectly. Tho it probably does help.

    Its up to the assembler to make sure everything is working the way it should.
    Id rather assemble my own rifle, than pay someone the same amount it cost me in parts to do the job. I KNOW when im done the rifle will run, because i will make it so.
    If a person would prefer to buy a complete rifle thats their prerogative as well, but

    I HIGHLY recommend someone interested in ARs build at least one gun. The understanding gained makes it worth while if nothing else.


    I learned that the hard way, more than once.
    Build what you want. Thats the great thing about ARs.
     
  18. Hokie_PhD

    Hokie_PhD Member

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    I’m with you.

    My first AR was one I purchased assembled. It was great to learn about the platform.

    I had to sell it. So I bought a PSA lower, then bought an upper when I scraped up the money. (Similar to the above upper).

    At the least I suggest people consider a PSA lower and upper as a first AR. One they’re inexpensive and two, they’re decent quality for the money. Plus if someone can’t snap and upper to a lower they have no business messing with an AR as they’ll have to field strip it to clean it.

    After that, I built my next AR and documented it as a budget build. I used the approach that agree with your comments. I did a bunch of research and tried to find the best value not the cheapest parts. IMHO an Anderson lower at $30 when on sale will get the job done as well as a lower costing several times more, so unless you’re looking for a special lower I don’t see the point. Now, the barrel, the trigger and a good inexpensive free float are the areas that seem to be with the extra expeane to help with accuracy. After that a nicer stock and pistol grip are nice as they’re your main points of contact.
     
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  19. JeeperCreeper

    JeeperCreeper Member

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    Excellent budget build. Only had 1 minor hangup with PSA parts. I've had more issues with "good quality and better" parts.

    Can you get better and pay much more? Yes.
    But you can't pay less and get better
     
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  20. mjsdwash

    mjsdwash Member

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    if it doesnt have rails on every square inch, freefloat tubes, and weigh 11# with a tactical name its a piece of junk. Never mind they have the specifications listed. Of course my M&A Parts rifle has made 20.000 without an issue (cleaned completely once, wiped down with oil every few hundred rounds), and the internet said It wouldn't even fire. I think you'll be fine. Anderson lowers are decent, I had some very minor issues with one, but nothing that couldn't be dealt with at home. Im still not sure what people think makes a $2000 unit better? Same alloys, same specifications, same headspace range. Accessories I suppose, but that adds weight to a design thats primary advantage over everything else is its light weight. Once a 16" AR weighs over 6# its starts getting awkward. Once its over 8, I just don't get the point. Never met anyone who could outshoot my $600 AR, so I don't see "its more precise" as a valid point for paying more, and higher end rifles certainly don't seem more durable, or reliable. To each his own, but I think you'll like it!
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2018
  21. Bushpilot

    Bushpilot Member

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    Well, despite what I said about diamondbacks, if you got one ( a diamondback) that works well it will probably work just fine for as long as you have it...
     
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  22. someguy2800

    someguy2800 Member

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    The people that say you can’t build an AR that works must be the same people who say you can’t build your own motors or transmission ect... I guess I didn’t get the memo because all mine work.
     
  23. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

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    @someguy2800 - I’ve only built 4 motors, which all did work, but I gotta say, they were a lot more complex than any of the few hundred AR’s I’ve built - which also all work.

    Some folks don’t take their Ruger Single Action revolvers apart because they’re too complicated. Some folks don’t know how to install a ceiling fan either. Strange times in which we live...
     
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  24. LoonWulf

    LoonWulf Member

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    It appears our memo distribution network needs work. :D
     
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  25. bullseye308

    bullseye308 Member

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    Well it came in today and I had it together in 20 minuets. Not bad for my first time. Tomorrow she hits the range and the only ammo I currently have is some American Eagle 55FMJ I traded for before the election. Probably won’t be spectacular, but will get an idea until I get some heavier bullets loaded. I bought a few k from RMR a while back just haven’t got all the brass trimmed and chamfered yet.

    Any recommendations on a good load for this? The few AR’s I’ve had have all been 1/9 twist and this one is a 1/7.
     
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