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View Full Version : AR construction v. I have a question


PanzerAce
02-21-2007, 4:26 PM
Yes, I am aware that the arfcom tutorials claim that you dont need any special tools. But for those of you that have actually built one, what tools would you suggest I have for the build?

AJAX22
02-21-2007, 4:37 PM
it depends on how much your assembling.

If you are gong to do the BBL/upper assembly, you really need an action block and wrench.

for the lower, I've done all of mine with a pair of pliars, some electrical tape and a bit of masking tape, and they look nice and work fine. (four done so far)

SemiAutoSam
02-21-2007, 4:39 PM
A punch set.
Small brass hammer.
Medium Vice grip pliers.
10-12 inch crescent wrench.
Screw drivers straight slot/ Phillips #3.

and if you plan to work on the barrel a Pair of vise barrel jaws.
the upper tool with insert that holds the upper in a vise

PanzerAce
02-21-2007, 4:40 PM
all I am doing is the lower. Good to hear about the lower, I figure my leatherman will be enough then :D

PanzerAce
02-21-2007, 4:41 PM
damn, what is the crescent wrench for, I dont think I have one of those (College student in an apartment).

SemiAutoSam
02-21-2007, 4:42 PM
The vise grip pliers help you install the roll pin for the BC hold open.
Crescent wrench for the buffer tube unless you happen to have a 5/8 wrench.

Besides as a male of the species you should own a set of tools. Its in the man rule book page 4895 paragraph 12.

all I am doing is the lower. Good to hear about the lower, I figure my leatherman will be enough then :D

AJAX22
02-21-2007, 4:42 PM
leather man isn't the right type of pliars panzer, you need a medium set of adjustable's, its important that you get the jaws adjusted so that the pressure on the pins you drive are in line with the direction you want them to move, a leatherman puts too much sideloading on the pin.

PanzerAce
02-21-2007, 4:44 PM
damn, ok. Looks like I am going to be making a stop at the hardware store then.

Technical Ted
02-21-2007, 4:58 PM
http://www.hunt101.com/img/378436.JPG

4 oz hammer.
3/32" punch for bolt catch roll pin.
1/8" punch for trigger guard roll pin.
5/32" punch for the hammer and trigger pins.
3/8" Allen key in case your pistol grip screw is a hex headed screw.
1/4" slot head driver with a 4" shaft in case your pistol grip screw is a slot headed screw. Also for A1/A2 buttstock installation.
6" adjustable wrench (crescent) if you're installing an A1/A2 receiver extension.
RRA castle nut wrench if you're installing a collapsible buttstock (mil-spec or commercial). Also has opening for installating A1/A2 receiver extension.

xenophobe
02-21-2007, 5:05 PM
+1 to what Ted said.

You don't need vice grips to install the bolt catch pin. Just the proper size roll pin punch.

Also, be careful installing the trigger guard roll pin. This is probably the most difficult pin to install. Make sure the trigger guard tang is on a flat, hard and level surface when installing the pin. You can easily break either tang if you are careless or slip.

Technical Ted
02-21-2007, 5:11 PM
+1 to what Ted said.

You don't need vice grips to install the bolt catch pin. Just the proper size roll pin punch.
+ manual dexterity

Also, be careful installing the trigger guard roll pin. This is probably the most difficult pin to install. Make sure the trigger guard tang is on a flat, hard and level surface when installing the pin. You can easily break either tang if you are careless or slip.
Piece of wood, plastic cutting board, stack of magazines or stack of printing paper works to support the ear/tang.

1911_Mitch
02-21-2007, 7:22 PM
I had a little trouble with the bolt stop pin, but the pliars with electrical tape worked. I think I might have also banged on it with the punch also.

To get the front pivet pin detent in, I used a small puddy knife to hold the detent in while I wiggled the front pivot pin into place.

Other than that, everything else was a piece-o-cake. Just follow the ar-15.com guide instructions

gn3hz3ku1*
02-21-2007, 9:10 PM
i didnt use a punch set... all i needed for my lower was tape and Vice grip pliers

rod
02-22-2007, 5:42 AM
I bought a punch set, brass hammer, and a CAR wrench to add to my toolbox but I didn't really need the punch set. I used it anyway just so I wouldn't feel like I wasted $8. I used a small flat head screwdriver to install the bullet button mag lock and a rubber mallot to help tap it into place. I needed an allen wrench to install the PG and some needle nose pliars to do something but I don't remember what now. The last tool I needed was a CAR wrench but I think vice grips would have worked just as well. Another wasted $6. Everything fit together nicely and so easily that I wondered if I did something wrong.

xrMike
02-22-2007, 7:30 AM
All I used was a smaller-than-normal sized hammer (borrowed from my wife's set of tools), a punch, and some electrical tape. I drove in all my roll pins with the hammer/punch. It does require some fine motor skills, but if you take your time, read the bARF.com instructions carefully, and use a quality LPK like RRA, it should go pretty smoothly.

Just to be safe you might also want to buy an "oh-shoot" spare parts/springs kit from 10% when you order your LPK from him. I would've been pissed if I lost a detent or spring or something and had to wait a few days for the replacement parts to come in before I could finish the assembly.

Spitfire75
02-22-2007, 10:49 AM
I've built 5 lowers so far...4 for me and 1 for a friend. The only tools I use are a couple of punches, a brass hammer, and a bunch of blue painters tape or masking tape.

The tricky parts are the pivot pin detent and spring, and the trigger guard roll pin. For the pivot pin detent and spring, I assemble everything inside a plastic grocery bag. I have a big punch that fits right into the pivot holes on the lower. I insert the spring and detent carefully and hold it in with the big punch through the pivot holes. Then I push the punch out with the pivot pin slowly and carefully, and the detent pops right into the groove of the pivot pin. For the trigger guard roll pin, I stack some magazines up to the height of the triggar guard ears and use them to support the ears while I tap in the pin. I don't have a workbench at home, so I have to do this while sitting on the ground, but one of these days I'll get a real house with a real workbench in the garage... :)

shark92651
02-22-2007, 11:28 AM
+1 to what Ted said.

You don't need vice grips to install the bolt catch pin. Just the proper size roll pin punch.

Also, be careful installing the trigger guard roll pin. This is probably the most difficult pin to install. Make sure the trigger guard tang is on a flat, hard and level surface when installing the pin. You can easily break either tang if you are careless or slip.

The bolt catch pin and trigger guard pin go in a LOT easier with the vice grips method, though. I would also run down to Home Depot and get a clevis pin (about a buck) to help get the takedown detent pin and spring in.

xenophobe
02-22-2007, 2:24 PM
The bolt catch pin and trigger guard pin go in a LOT easier with the vice grips method, though. I would also run down to Home Depot and get a clevis pin (about a buck) to help get the takedown detent pin and spring in.

I've installed many dozens of LPKs. Never had a problem with the proper roll pin punch. I can take a pile of parts and have a complete rifle assembled in less than 10 minutes.

GTKrockeTT
02-22-2007, 2:28 PM
+1 to Ted's list of tools.

on top of that, i'd add small, needle nosed pliers, to address the front pivot pin spring.

tophatjones
02-22-2007, 5:18 PM
Hi, I too am a college student and managed to build a lower with nothing but a wooden dowel and a hammer (and a screwdriver for the grip). There are no hammer marks or dents anywhere, but it did take a lot of time. I don't recommend building without the proper tools. Investing in the tools will pay off in the long run. Good luck!

mltrading
02-22-2007, 5:25 PM
If you are doing lower receivers only, a set of punches/hammer is a plus.

Of course you can use a regular hammer and a flat screw driver or something else. But proper tools will save your efforts and let you do it right at first try.

Besides, the hammer/punch set will not cost you hundred dollars. It's kind of cheap. It will pay off in the long run.

shark92651
02-22-2007, 5:53 PM
I've installed many dozens of LPKs. Never had a problem with the proper roll pin punch. I can take a pile of parts and have a complete rifle assembled in less than 10 minutes.

I guess the problems I had with my first lower was because I didn't have proper "roll" pin punches, just a set of punches that were flat on the end (home depot). On a budget, or with the tools most people who have never done gunsmithing have, I still think the vice grips method is the best way to get those two roll pins in. The rest of the lower is a piece of cake.