View Full Version : New to Calguns. Thinking of building my own AR

03-07-2012, 9:49 AM

I'm sure this topic has been covered extensively, so feel free to just point me to the right place.

I'm trying to decide whether to buy an AR-15 or build my own. I've heard strong arguments for building my own, and I'm leaning that way at the moment.

Looking for some info as to:

1. Can I build my own quality AR for ~$1000?
2. How to I get started?
3. What manufacturers would you recommend?
4. Is it possible to simply purchase already built uppers and lowers (as opposed to buying all the parts for each and building them from scratch)?

Thanks so much for the advice!

03-07-2012, 10:06 AM
Welcome to CalGuns.

03-07-2012, 10:09 AM
Welcome! The search button is ure friend here...u can buy a stripped spikes tactical lower for $100 plus a parts kit from palmetto state armory for about $50. You would need a stock and just slap a complete upper on there, some sights, ammo and you're good to go

03-07-2012, 10:09 AM
welcome to the forum.

SoCal Bob
03-07-2012, 10:39 AM
Welcome to Calguns. And now some answers:

1. Yes
2. http://www.calguns.net/OLL/assembly.html
3. Some suggestions - JD Machine, Spikes, Aero Precision and many more.

If you live near a Turners then you might check this out http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=542810

If not, then there is probably a Calguns sponsor nearby that would be glad to help.

4. Yes, much to the chagrin of CA DOJ, the work around version of the AR is readily available (Bullet Button & 10 rd magazine) and it is not uncommon to see good quality basic AR's for under $1,000. Big name gun companies (Colt & Smith & Wesson) even make CA compliant AR rifles.

Fun fact: the same rifle that is a felony to possess in CA is available at Walmarts in other states, usually on a cash & carry basis.

03-07-2012, 11:44 AM
Welcome aboard !

Here's an affordable way to start.........Includes complete upper assy, stock and lower parts kit. All you would need to complete the package is a stripped lower and a bullet button. This will school on some of the functions of an AR. If you need help there is plenty of help on this board.


03-07-2012, 4:21 PM
Welcome to Calguns! Build your own, it's fun! Shop around and find good deals and you will definitely do OK for $1K.

03-07-2012, 4:25 PM
You should definitely build your own. It's very addicting though. Once you build one you'll want more.

03-07-2012, 4:33 PM
Welcome aboard~!
You can buy an entry level M&P Sport for $650 I believe but I would do what GMG said.

03-07-2012, 5:32 PM

03-07-2012, 6:30 PM

03-07-2012, 7:10 PM
Welcome aboard.

03-08-2012, 3:38 PM

03-08-2012, 3:42 PM
Welcome. Build not Buy

Time do some research.

Took me two months of non stop research but I am well fed now on my AR knowledge.

03-08-2012, 3:46 PM
You should definitely build your own. It's very addicting though. Once you build one you'll want more.

Amen brother! Started with one lower, I just completed that build, I have 1 stripped lower, one completed lower and 2 more lowers on the way. :facepalm:

Welcome Steiny!


03-08-2012, 4:11 PM

03-08-2012, 7:17 PM
Welcome and I am glad you asked the question because I was wondering. So thanks to all for the great info, I am just starting to do my own research. I'll sure have more questions later.

03-08-2012, 8:41 PM
Welcome.. have fun with that AR

03-09-2012, 9:45 AM
Thanks for the all the info and the welcomes! Per the general consensus, I've decided to build. Ordered a PSA stripped lower and DPMS lpk. Currently shopping around for the rest.

One followup question: I'm heading to a Crossroads of the West gun show in a couple weeks. Would that be a good place to get a deal on a good upper receiver?

xXx Sir Sik xXx
03-09-2012, 6:52 PM
Welcome to the board

03-09-2012, 9:36 PM

Welcome to Calguns! If you are just looking to Mod a stock or put a scope on it I would get a 100% rifle. There are deals to be had, especially when you can get a complete, Brand New AR for ~$600.

Sgt. J Beezy
03-09-2012, 10:12 PM
If this is your first AR I would recommend buying one complete. If you are somewhat competent with the system then go for the build. I say this for multiple purposes but for one, if you don't like the AR, a complete weapon has higher resale value than a Frankengun. Most reputable companies also have some type of warranty on a complete weapon that you will have a hard time getting with a home build. Builds might need some tweaks to get running properly and for a person new to the platform, it might be a bad first experience with the system and you might ditch the AR, the finest combat platform, and go to the darkside... We wouldn't want that now would we?!? Lastly, building them are addictive... Once you start... It's over. Hahaha. Either way you go have fun with it and if you do run into problems or have questions you have a great resource available to you being apart of this community.

03-12-2012, 1:44 PM
Welcome aboard!