PDA

View Full Version : Help me find the "perfect" upper


Sleighter
09-28-2011, 9:34 PM
Hey everyone,

I'm a long time lurker and reader and newly posting member. I'm a long time shooter, but first time AR builder. I think I've narrowed down the specs I'm looking for in an upper, but can't find it anywhere. So, I'm looking to all of you with your experience and expertise to help me track this down.

Desired specs:

20" heavy barrel, threaded to accept flash suppressor/comp,
1/8 barrel twist, want to avoid 1/9 for higher grain bullets
(fluted if possible)
(prefer to not have a stainless steel barrel if possible)
A2 flash suppressor
free float handguard, NO rails
.223 Wylde or .223 Hybrid chamber
no A2 front sight post - rail height gas block preferred
Flattop receiver


Here's where the :facepalm: come in: I would love to get an upper configured like this for around $500, but the budget is negotiable to get an exact match for what I'm looking for. Is there a company that provides something along these lines or will I be better off building my own upper? If i need to part this out, Riflegear has told me that they will assemble an upper for $35, which seems reasonable.

All comments are appreciated in advance! Thanks!

Noah3683
09-28-2011, 9:43 PM
You will have to make compromises but you may find something close from rock river arms

Sleighter
09-28-2011, 9:48 PM
I've spent a lot of time carefully considering the Rock River Arms products. For the most part I really like their style, but this is the closest I've found:

http://rockriverarms.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=387

I would get it if it didn't have the 1/9 barrel twist rate.

palakaboy
09-28-2011, 9:51 PM
No twist preference??

I think you can find your upper at jse surplus.

I built my 1/8 5.56 18inch middy with a flattop receiver, vltor vc-1,railed gas block for less than 400$ shipped to my door.

gadjeep
09-28-2011, 9:51 PM
I think DPMS has one configured like this aside from the threaded barrel which you could have done later. Check MidwayUSA

Sleighter
09-28-2011, 9:55 PM
I've edited my original post to include a twist preference. 1/8

smittty
09-28-2011, 9:56 PM
PSA makes something similar but stainless,

http://palmettostatearmory.com/2096.php. price is $430

NYY
09-28-2011, 9:57 PM
No twist preference??

I think you can find your upper at jse surplus.

I built my 1/8 5.56 18inch middy with a flattop receiver, vltor vc-1,railed gas block for less than 400$ shipped to my door.

did u build that yourself? Or built somewhere else...
ive always wanted to find a place where i can combine a list of parts and have it put together for me then shipped...

bombadillo
09-28-2011, 10:02 PM
www.whiteoakarmament.com

They'll make your upper exactly to your specs, twist rate, gas block, 1/2x28 threaded barrel with recessed target crown, and you'll have a SWEET shooting rifle. They make almost literally the exact upper you're looking for around $600 or so. Only thing may be the gas block rail which I'm sure they could do as well.

http://www.whiteoakarmament.com/xcart/images/D/2VU2%283%29.jpg

Something like this with a railed gas block and you'll have to ask for a threaded muzzle on it. Not a problem though.

Quinc
09-28-2011, 10:08 PM
RRA Predator. http://www.rockriverarms.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=271

There is one right now in the for sale area for 580$ or you can get a brand new one with chrome bolt for $560 shipped from ar15sales.com

palakaboy
09-28-2011, 10:11 PM
LG, sometimes they do allow for customization. Or to at least add more accessories.

Omega13device
09-28-2011, 10:25 PM
OP: You say this would be the "perfect" upper. Perfect for what?

Sleighter
09-28-2011, 10:44 PM
Omega: perfect for me!

I'm envisioning using it as a 300-500 yard range/predator hunting rifle.

bombadillo
09-28-2011, 10:53 PM
Then check out the one I posted. You'd like it.

donking
09-28-2011, 11:01 PM
www.whiteoakarmament.com

They'll make your upper exactly to your specs, twist rate, gas block, 1/2x28 threaded barrel with recessed target crown, and you'll have a SWEET shooting rifle. They make almost literally the exact upper you're looking for around $600 or so. Only thing may be the gas block rail which I'm sure they could do as well.

Something like this with a railed gas block and you'll have to ask for a threaded muzzle on it. Not a problem though.

I went to the range with a buddy who was shooting his WOA (20" CMP version) for the first time. The first 5 shots at 100 yards were in the 10-ring (center of target) and he joked about being worried that it would take a long time to dial it in. :rolleyes:

Sleighter
09-28-2011, 11:14 PM
Bombadillo:
Your suggestion is great, although a little higher than I'm looking to pay, but it may come to that.

I've heard great things about WhiteOak and Don King confirmed their accuracy. Do they only make stainless barrels? My concern would be the reflective barrel if out hunting with the rifle. Any suggestions?

Quinc
09-28-2011, 11:19 PM
Bombadillo:
Your suggestion is great, although a little higher than I'm looking to pay, but it may come to that.

I've heard great things about WhiteOak and Don King confirmed their accuracy. Do they only make stainless barrels? My concern would be the reflective barrel if out hunting with the rifle. Any suggestions?

Paint, bead blasting, or a barrel cover.

Sleighter
09-28-2011, 11:46 PM
Would I be better off custom building an upper? If so, is only the receiver (Chamber) important to achieve the .223 Wylde, or is the barrel different also?

bombadillo
09-29-2011, 7:47 AM
You can always paint or duracoat the barrel. I'd leave it alone though. The chamber will shoot 5.56, I've shot them myself out of the CMP uppers. Its wylde chambered with a 1:8 twist. You're better off buying a better setup than trying to get one of the RRA uppers that may shoot superb but may shoot like crap too. I KNOW WOA is of the best quality and QC is a huge factor for the small companies like them. They're strictly going for accuracy and their uppers, barrels, and triggers prove it.

h0use
09-29-2011, 9:59 AM
build it from the ground up!

jetspeedz
09-29-2011, 10:12 AM
White Oak is my choice if you had to buy it. Personally i prefer to build it.

foxtrotuniformlima
09-29-2011, 10:26 AM
If the WOA is in your budget, buy it. It will shoot lights out!

RugerNo1
09-29-2011, 10:56 AM
...Do they only make stainless barrels? My concern would be the reflective barrel if out hunting with the rifle. Any suggestions?

You can always paint or duracoat the barrel...

John, the owner of WOA, can bead blast or hydrodip the upper (if you want a full camo finish).

Sleighter
09-29-2011, 11:12 AM
It sounds as if WOA is the community consensus, however I may not be ready to drop that kind of money out-the-gate, or have to deal with re-finishing such a nice barrel. I had another rifle with bead-blasted stainless and I'm not a huge fan of the finish, I would prefer to stay with the black.

If I were to build, what factors should I consider?

Omega13device
09-29-2011, 12:34 PM
I don't think WOA barrels are particularly expensive (less than $300). You could certainly spend more on a Noveske or Krieger.

Painting is as simple as some krylon. You can do it yourself and it's easily removable. Sounds like this rifle will be more of a tool than a work of art so I wouldn't feel compelled to finish it in some super-expensive coating made from the tears of angels.

I'm not sure I understand your requirement for no rails on the handguard. You're worried about the weight maybe? If so, then you're overthinking it. Free-float rails are pretty similar in what, rails or not. Look at the difference in weight between a DD Lite rail and a PRI carbon fiber handguard of the same length. The DD Lite is the same or slightly lighter. The ideal might be a Troy TRX extreme because it's much lighter than other free-float rails but it comes with little rail sections that you can mount anywhere you want.

I would avoid railed gas blocks. They're not useful for mounting anything anyway. Get a low-profile gas block and a hanguard long enough to cover it.

Sleighter
09-29-2011, 12:42 PM
Thanks Omega.

My decision against rails is purely preferential. I like a smooth handguard for shoulder firing more than a railed handguard with the covers, also I don't anticipate adding gadgets and making it tacticool, that's the extent of my decision making process on that end. In turn, the only reason I'm looking for a railed gas block is so that I could add a front flip-up sight if desired in the future. I'm looking for simple functionality, mixed with accuracy and portability, in about that order.

Sleighter
09-29-2011, 12:50 PM
Well I've spoken with John at WOA and based on their current work load they are not taking custom orders, only shipping what is offered on the site. So it seems like I'm back to the drawing board on this one.

OC-Indian
09-29-2011, 12:56 PM
Ok I'll say it. For under $600 you can get a Stag 20" complete upper in 6.8SPC II and have plenty of knockdown power to spare at 400 / 500 yards

wash
09-29-2011, 1:15 PM
6.8 and 5.56 can be accurate to 500 yards or more but I wouldn't say either of them have good knockdown power at that range. They do have good wounding potential which is the reason why 5.56 was adopted by the US military.

I don't know a lot of hunting terminology so if "predators" are real easy to kill, I guess you are going the right direction but my instinct is to step up to something in the .308 ballpark when you want to humanely drop something at that kind of range.

Sleighter
09-29-2011, 1:45 PM
Through reading on CGN I stumbled across this website and was wondering if anyone had experience or suggestions regarding this upper. It looks like it is close to what I'm looking for and I would just need to have someone thread the barrel for me. The price is hard to overlook.

https://www.primaryarms.com/Bushmaster_Predator_A3_FlatTop_Upper_p/purvmb20fpred8.htm

wash
09-29-2011, 2:14 PM
I don't know about Bushmaster but I find it odd that they use a cut down A2 front sight for a gas block. How much could they possibly save over something like a YHM low profile gas block?

I get nervous when I see things that I don't understand. Look for reviews.

Noah3683
09-29-2011, 4:18 PM
My dad had a predator upper a few years ago. It was a solid performer and very accurate, but the BCG wasn't the greatest. You can replace that gas block and still be out under your budget. I'm not sure it was a cut down a2 either, It was nicely machined that way. still could've been, but I take that pinned gas block over a clamp on YHM any day of the week and twice on Sunday

Omega13device
09-29-2011, 8:48 PM
A cut-down front-sight base is pinned to the barrel so it has less chance of loosening up than a clamp-on or set-screw gas block. May not make a big difference for hunting but it's certainly not a bad thing.

Norcal Industries
09-29-2011, 8:56 PM
http://rockriverarms.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=270 i had a few of these over the last few years, and with the chrome bolt it was pretty accurate out of the box, and pretty cheap. has most of the criteria youre looking for except its not threaded and its stainless.

Sleighter
09-29-2011, 9:01 PM
Norcal Industries: Thanks for directing me to the RRA upper. I have looked at that upper before, but after comparing it to the Bushmaster A3 sold by Primary Arms for $450, it's hard to justify the cost of the $630 for the RRA. They seem to be very similar in spec, except for the barrel material...so I don't know that I consider the stainless worth an extra $180.

If I am overlooking something, please let me know. As I've said before...I'm coming to the community for advice...not as an expert.

cattledoggie
09-29-2011, 9:15 PM
Primary Arms has just what you are looking for. Bushmaster Predator upper for about $470. Meets all your specs except for the flash suppressor, but you could have the barrel threaded for that later as funds permit.

cattledoggie
09-29-2011, 9:16 PM
Opps, looks like I should have read all the posts before replying. Looks like you already found the Bushmaster.

Sleighter
09-29-2011, 9:17 PM
Thanks CattleDoggie. :)

Omega13device
09-30-2011, 3:46 PM
If you want advice, my advice would be buy once cry once. The Bushmaster might seem appealing on cost but you don't really know what you're getting. Save up your pennies and build a nice upper. Something like:

$300 WOA stainless match barrel
$100 CMT upper
$180 Troy TRX Extreme 13" handguard
$75 Low profile gas block and gas tube
$130 LMT BCG

$785 Total

Yes it's a little over your budget but when you consider what you'd spend in ammo over the life of the barrel the cost difference is relatively small.

There are plenty of shops that will build this for you, probably for free if you buy the parts from them.

Quinc
09-30-2011, 4:33 PM
Re-read my Original post...