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EricStanley
06-11-2012, 1:45 PM
So, I think I've decided to attempt my first AR build. I've never owned an AR, so this should be interesting...

I take forever to make decisions, so this build could take the better part of a year.

I'm not looking to build the best gun ever made. I'm also not looking to spend a year and $1.5k to end up with the quality of a gun I could have bought for $700...

So... in the spirit of "learn from others' mistakes" - what should I AVOID? Any brands out there known to be complete crap that trap noobs like me? Any brands out there that are insanely expensive for parts that only only complete pro's would appreciate?

Thanks for the help!

Eric

ptgarcia
06-11-2012, 1:48 PM
Avoid buying all kinds of accessories until you shoot the gun bare bones and determine what you want/need.

EricStanley
06-11-2012, 2:06 PM
Got it! Good advice

Tr3v
06-11-2012, 2:09 PM
I'd avoid NcStar stuff, it's cheap and hardly holds up to any expectations... at least that has been my experience.

Fractured
06-11-2012, 2:15 PM
Take whatever your budget it and add 500.00

Jimmy310
06-11-2012, 2:26 PM
I'd avoid NcStar stuff, it's cheap and hardly holds up to any expectations... at least that has been my experience.

+1,000,000,000,000,000

I bought a buffer tube kit(buffer tube, buffer spring, buffer, end plate, castle nut, and buffer) on ebay from a seller called Omega Tactical.

Took off my A2 stock and installed everything, and then put on my magpul moe stock.

Took it to the range, first did a empty mag bolt catch check. Bolt wouldn't hold open.

Started firing the AR, was getting some jams and double feeds (like 5 times out of 100 rounds).

Went home pissed off, started trouble shooting around the internetz and cut my buffer spring thinking it was too long... it wasnt. A shooting buddy with his AR came over and put in his spring/buffer. It worked.

That night i ordered a new spring and same buffer my buddy had from midway.

2 days later when it arrived, i put them in and the same problem persisted, the bolt wouldnt lock back on a empty mag.

I went down to riflegear and had them take a look at it after describing my problems. they noticed the bolt when charged back with the charging handle didnt go as far as another rifle did.

They blamed it on the buffer tube and sold me a stag arms buffer tube (i like their quality, the threads on the tube screwed in alot easier than the ebay buffertube). Once i got home i put everything together, i pulled back the charging handle on the rifle and the bolt catch locked on the empty mag.
http://s3.amazonaws.com/ragefaces/79644cd774e764847ca923c2ceaa36b5.png

Moral of the story: Dont go cheap on your parts kit, and buffer kit. It cost me a extra 55 dollars to troubleshoot my problem when i could have done it right for another $15 in the beginning.

black gun addict
06-11-2012, 2:32 PM
Keep it simple would be my advise. You can always accessorize later on down the road.

BenHa
06-11-2012, 2:35 PM
Buy a cheap lower + kit from pal armory + good upper done :]

EricStanley
06-11-2012, 3:40 PM
Here are a few tips: http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=1165997#post1165997
Awesome - thank you

Take whatever your budget it and add 500.00
Not so awesome... don't let the wifey see that.

+1,000,000,000,000,000

I bought a buffer tube kit(buffer tube, buffer spring, buffer, end plate, castle nut, and buffer) on ebay from a seller called Omega Tactical.

Took off my A2 stock and installed everything, and then put on my magpul moe stock.

Took it to the range, first did a empty mag bolt catch check. Bolt wouldn't hold open.

Started firing the AR, was getting some jams and double feeds (like 5 times out of 100 rounds).

Went home pissed off, started trouble shooting around the internetz and cut my buffer spring thinking it was too long... it wasnt. A shooting buddy with his AR came over and put in his spring/buffer. It worked.

That night i ordered a new spring and same buffer my buddy had from midway.

2 days later when it arrived, i put them in and the same problem persisted, the bolt wouldnt lock back on a empty mag.

I went down to riflegear and had them take a look at it after describing my problems. they noticed the bolt when charged back with the charging handle didnt go as far as another rifle did.

They blamed it on the buffer tube and sold me a stag arms buffer tube (i like their quality, the threads on the tube screwed in alot easier than the ebay buffertube). Once i got home i put everything together, i pulled back the charging handle on the rifle and the bolt catch locked on the empty mag.
http://s3.amazonaws.com/ragefaces/79644cd774e764847ca923c2ceaa36b5.png

Moral of the story: Dont go cheap on your parts kit, and buffer kit. It cost me a extra 55 dollars to troubleshoot my problem when i could have done it right for another $15 in the beginning.

Yikes! okay!

Keep it simple would be my advise. You can always accessorize later on down the road.
Agreed!

Buy a cheap lower + kit from pal armory + good upper done :]
That's where I was leaning - seems to be a good deal... until I have to DROS it locally... :(

steveOsteezy
06-11-2012, 4:31 PM
It is entirely possible to build and AR on a budget! My 14.7" Palmetto State Armory rifle kit cost about 600 to build. You don't need to spend 1000+ to get a bad *** rifle

steveOsteezy
06-11-2012, 4:34 PM
BTW my "cheap" Palmetto rifle has ran flawlessy, even with steel case and reloaded ammo!

milotrain
06-11-2012, 4:55 PM
joeboboutfitters.com will sell you all the LPK and accessories you need to build up a Lower or Upper. Cheap, great service and no Cali Tax. Buy the lower somewhere close and source the rest from out of state.

EricStanley
06-11-2012, 5:16 PM
BTW my "cheap" Palmetto rifle has ran flawlessy, even with steel case and reloaded ammo!

Dig it!


joeboboutfitters.com will sell you all the LPK and accessories you need to build up a Lower or Upper. Cheap, great service and no Cali Tax. Buy the lower somewhere close and source the rest from out of state.

That's the plan...

Jimmy310
06-11-2012, 10:27 PM
ES,

A lower will cost you atleast $99+tax($10)+dros($25) in cali (=. Add $20(+tax = $22) for a bullet button and your looking @ $155 for the lower/bb in la county.

a decent LPK will cost you $60-70. For LPK's i like Stag Arms, or Rock River Arms off the shelf at my local gunstore.

A M4 buttstock kit can be had for $60 @ joe bob outfitters or psa

A good upper from Palmetto State Armory will run you $520. Minus $50 if you dont want a hammer forged barrel.

If you get a upper with a front sight post, i recommend the matech rear buis. I see them on ebay for cheap all the time $40.

Other than that. Add $100 for a decent red dot sight and riser (bushnell trs 25 or primary arms).

= $890 for a decent quality AR with sights

BEE
06-11-2012, 11:05 PM
I say, don't skimp the first time around so you don't have to buy something twice. Have a good idea of the features and little things that you need & want. Then shop around..

TruEdge
06-12-2012, 8:33 AM
joeboboutfitters.com will sell you all the LPK and accessories you need to build up a Lower or Upper. Cheap, great service and no Cali Tax. Buy the lower somewhere close and source the rest from out of state.

+1 on joebobs. Those guys have great prices and fast shipping.

milotrain
06-12-2012, 8:51 AM
Also consider getting something other than a standard trigger. Almost all standard triggers suck. Joebob sells a RRA LPK with their NM two stage for $130, and it's well worth it.

jsipe007
06-12-2012, 1:09 PM
I dont know if its in stock, but Palmetto State Armnory was having a sale recently... $80 for a complete LPK with Mil Spec M4 Stock, Buffer assembly, and Buffer tube... seemed like a steal at that price. I have that same setup and the trigger is quite nice and crisp with minimal creep. (although I unfortunately didnt get it for 80 bucks lol)

glock21fan
06-12-2012, 1:12 PM
I recently bought a stag stock set. Come to find out the notch at the bottom was too wide so the tube rotates a few degrees in each direction. Really pissed me off.

EricStanley
06-12-2012, 4:40 PM
I've been trying to find a lower receiver with no engraving (well, serial number only). No brand logo, no safety engraving, etc. The only thing I can find are 80% lowers that still need milling and drilling, which I don't really want to do. I plan to send the rcvr off to be custom laser engraved.

Any ideas?

tanakasan
06-12-2012, 4:45 PM
Look at Addax forged lower (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=576648)...very minmal engraving. Knowledgeable people and great CS!

Robert

scglock
06-12-2012, 5:22 PM
+1 on waiting to buy accessories.

EricStanley
06-12-2012, 5:37 PM
Look at Addax forged lower (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=576648)...very minmal engraving. Knowledgeable people and great CS!

Robert

That does look better than most... but... I'm looking to get custom engraving done on both sides of the magwell so I'll need to find one that's blank on both sides.

SR-71 BLACKBIRD
06-12-2012, 10:54 PM
Watch out for the airsoft stuff out there. After spending what I spent on my AR308, I would suggest to a new builder to buy and build a stripped lower and buy a complete upper. Slap them both together and go have some fun shooting your new rifle. As others have suggested add accessories to suit your needs. Good luck and PM me if you have any questions as you go.

gunsarefun
06-13-2012, 6:46 AM
I would looke for an upper from companies like stag, CMMG, Palmetto,Spikes, possibly JSE. I would avoid Daniel Defense, Noveske, YHM, LWRC, LMT, mainly because of the cost factor. For a first timer, no reason for buying top shelf products IMHO, grab a good upper from someone like CMMG or Spikes for around $500 or so and go put 2000 rounds through it. You can always buy the fancy stuff on another build. I would also try to avoid the real cheap stuff, like Model 1 sales, and Del-ton. I have no experience with Model 1, but I do have a Del-ton myself. The rifle functions great, no doubt there, but the quality of the machining on the bolt, barrel, and lower is not to the standards of stuff that is only $100 more like CMMG or Stag. If a guy is on a SUPER tight budget, Del-Ton is a good way to go, but if an extra $100 doesn't make or break the deal, go for a mid grade company.

Agent Tikki
06-13-2012, 11:20 AM
Wrote a little ditty just for you....


http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=555451


enjoy.