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-   -   Caved - Starting My 1st AR Build [Done!] (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=642906)

Dubels 11-11-2012 11:35 AM

Caved - Starting My 1st AR Build [Done!]
 
With all this crazy post-election madness going on I was going to wait to build/buy an AR-15. But I just couldn't wait any longer and decide to order some parts online since I can't make it to the LGS to DROS a stripped lower today, and they are closed Monday.

So far I have ordered:
  • PSA M4 Premium MBUS Optic 16" Upper
  • PSA Forged Mil-Spec Charging Handle
  • PSA MOE Lower Build Kit - FDE
  • Daniel Defense Chrome BCG

I spent a little more than I wanted since I was looking at a S&W MP 15 for around $750 OTD, but I feel like I get to customize my AR the way I want it. I am not too sure about the Vortex StrikeFire that comes with the upper but for that price I could sell the red dot and upgrade to something else (EXPS2-0). I was originally looking at a BCM upper but for the price I think PSA is a better deal. My only concern is not being able to find a stripped lower that I like.

Am I missing anything? I am going to update this tread with pictures and updates as I go along. I am also tempted to ditch the fixed front sight and run a rail with a low profile gas block and a flip-up front sight.

shooterbill 11-11-2012 11:41 AM

Where are you? Stripped lowers aren't too hard to find in SoCal. I like the Spike's, but buy what you like. The Vortex optic is on my list to try. Maintain your gun and you will like it.

Dubels 11-11-2012 11:46 AM

In Sacramento. I was in my local LGS last week intent on buying something that day, but it was so packed and I kept on getting passed over for service. After over an hour of waiting I just left the store. They had good stock of things in the store that day but it was before the election results, haven't been back since.

I am not partial to any stripped lower. I will take a look at Spikes, but I do remember the sales person talking about Stag lowers to another guy building ARs for himself and his wife. Looking to spend around $125-150. Is that reasonable?

Now the wait begins and hopefully I can stop checking out AR stuff and get to my damn work.

Colt562 11-11-2012 11:50 AM

I spend 120 OTD on my stripped lower. Im starting my build once I get all the parts as well.

Dubels 11-11-2012 11:56 AM

Yeah I am glad that I am doing a build instead of buying a complete rifle. I was so intent on buying a rifle that day, I had cash in hand and was just wanting to fondle the SCAR that had there just to justify buying it. Saved a lot of money going this route and will probably have more fun.

Blind 11-11-2012 12:01 PM

I put a mega arms stripped lower into dros jail a couple days ago at turners, it was $99 + fee's. They also sell the S&W stamped lower for ~$139 if I remember right. The mega looked and felt better to me despite being cheaper.

zfields 11-11-2012 12:02 PM

Good deal, ordered myself a NFA complete lower for a low cost/low weight AR myself. I think my other guns are going to feel weird with an AR in the mix.

Dubels 11-11-2012 12:21 PM

Too bad they don't have turners up north.

zfields 11-11-2012 12:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dubels (Post 9703024)
Too bad they don't have turners up north.

Where you located at?

shooterbill 11-11-2012 12:26 PM

My gun guy ordered my Spike's from Brownells. $89 plus fees. Your LGS should be able to order from anybody and get the lower you want. Be prepared to buy more AR's. It's a sickness.

Dubels 11-11-2012 12:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zfields (Post 9703030)
Where you located at?

Sacramento.

Brownells has the Spikes lower listed as out of stock. I am just hoping that they have a stripped lower that I like in stock so I don't have to wait for the shipping and DROS. I wonder if they can do DROS while I wait for the lower to ship if I really have to order one.

Hopefully I will get all the parts I need before the stocks run dry. Really wishing I made a trip to the gun show this weekend for ammo.

zfields 11-11-2012 12:39 PM

Try Sac black rifle, or the shop up in tracy, cant remember the name offhand.

JNunez23 11-11-2012 12:47 PM

Great start!

Good luck with the build. If you have questions, check out the stickies at the top of the page.

Dutch3 11-11-2012 12:49 PM

Huntington's in Oroville had Franklin Armory stripped lowers as of 9 days ago. $129+ tax & DROS.

SocomM4 11-11-2012 12:50 PM

+1 for for SacBlackRifle , great place to get into the Ar mix.

Dubels 11-11-2012 1:00 PM

That is not good SacBlackRifle is a Glock Blue Label dealer. I really hope I don't find my GSSF discount card because its going to be one expensive week. I'll try my luck at River City Gun Exchange again because they are close but if not it might look like I am going to DROS to lowers and a G34...

tanakasan 11-11-2012 2:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dubels (Post 9703117)
Sacramento.

Brownells has the Spikes lower listed as out of stock. I am just hoping that they have a stripped lower that I like in stock so I don't have to wait for the shipping and DROS. I wonder if they can do DROS while I wait for the lower to ship if I really have to order one.

Hopefully I will get all the parts I need before the stocks run dry. Really wishing I made a trip to the gun show this weekend for ammo.

Why not get a PSA lower to match?

Robert

wash 11-11-2012 2:41 PM

I'm partial to the Vltor Gunfighter charging handle and spending money on mil-spec is not something I would do if I can avoid it.

Since you are going for Magpul furniture, maybe you should look for a S&W Magpul lower?

I just saw one in a magazine. Mostly it's just a forged lower with integrated triggerguard and a bit bigger mag well bevel but you could do worse and an all Magpul rifle might be cool.

Have fun.

SocomM4 11-11-2012 2:44 PM

You can get get the cobranded magpul/S&W stripped lower now? Shweet.

wash 11-11-2012 3:03 PM

Well you can get the full rifle so maybe?

S&W would sell tons if they want to.

desertjunkie760 11-11-2012 4:29 PM

I DROS my first JD lower just a few days ago. The wait sucks, but I guess it doesn't matter since I have no parts anyway. Can't wait to start my build. Have tons of ideas I might even start a thread.

snowdog650 11-11-2012 4:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dubels (Post 9702876)
In Sacramento. I was in my local LGS last week intent on buying something that day, but it was so packed and I kept on getting passed over for service. After over an hour of waiting I just left the store. They had good stock of things in the store that day but it was before the election results, haven't been back since.

I am not partial to any stripped lower. I will take a look at Spikes, but I do remember the sales person talking about Stag lowers to another guy building ARs for himself and his wife. Looking to spend around $125-150. Is that reasonable?

Now the wait begins and hopefully I can stop checking out AR stuff and get to my damn work.



Go to Discount Shooters Supply in Roseville. They have stripped Aero Precision lowers for around $80.

wsmc27 11-11-2012 4:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by desertjunkie760 (Post 9704262)
I DROS my first JD lower just a few days ago. The wait sucks, but I guess it doesn't matter since I have no parts anyway. Can't wait to start my build. Have tons of ideas I might even start a thread.

Nice. A couple of the AR's we assembled have JD Machine lowers. Like them very much.

---

OP, congrats! btw, we bought a PSA 16" middy upper earlier this year, like it very much. Well made, shoots great, runs everything we've fed it so far. :D



You guys have enjoy, and be safe. :)

DasBoost 11-11-2012 9:36 PM

OP: I'm in the same boat; starting my first AR build. Definitely a lot to take in. Haha. :D

Blind 11-11-2012 10:36 PM

the trouble I'm running into is finding a complete cheap rifle kit in stock to slap onto my lower. Everything from del-ton, dpms, PSA, joebobs, RRA, and midwayusa.com all seems to be out of stock and unable to be backordered even.

Nevermind trying to decide between a 16" and a 20" for my first AR. That's alright though, I bought one of the chinese SKS's from turners when I got the lower so I have something to play with while I wait for stock and good deals to become available on AR parts...

Dubels 11-12-2012 12:28 AM

If you don't mind building your "cheap kit" the parts can be found. The problem is a lot of the dealers don't have kits available because there is a shortage of BCGs. But PSA has a lower for $309 and you can grab a complete lower parts kit from them for $105. Just need to source a BCG, I went for the DD one in chrome because it was in-stock and people say the chrome is a good investment. I saw that riflegear still has some Nickle Boron BCGs in. O yeah you might need a charge handle :)

Edit: you can also check out these guys who are listed in the commercial sales section:https://www.civtactical.com/shop/ind...urercco9ljcgq1 I have no experience with them but they seem to have 90% kits that would finish you lower.

Blind 11-12-2012 2:19 PM

thanks but yeah that's too rich for my blood, I get $461 shipped for the PSA M4 madness upper, PSA mil-spec charging handle, and PSA classic LBK, then add $199 + shipping for a BCG that I was able to find (DD mil-spec on midwayusa.com). Lot more than the ~$500 out the door for the complete kits that are listed out of stock everywhere...

some of the backorder dates on midwayusa.com are hilarious too, I see some uppers listed as 'backorder OK' "expected in stock date 8/12/2013" - LOL!

Dubels 11-12-2012 4:30 PM

This dealer has Stag 90% kits for$614 shipped. http://www.ar15sales.com/store/page2.html

Just ordered a EXPS2 last night from this forum.

DasBoost 11-12-2012 5:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blind (Post 9706518)
the trouble I'm running into is finding a complete cheap rifle kit in stock to slap onto my lower. Everything from del-ton, dpms, PSA, joebobs, RRA, and midwayusa.com all seems to be out of stock and unable to be backordered even.

Nevermind trying to decide between a 16" and a 20" for my first AR. That's alright though, I bought one of the chinese SKS's from turners when I got the lower so I have something to play with while I wait for stock and good deals to become available on AR parts...

Ahh, I'm building/assembling mine from parts. Currently looking into barrels and handguards right now to complete the upper. Then a lower and misc. bits and then the assembly.

Dubels 11-16-2012 11:38 AM

Got my BCG and EXPS2 in today. DROS'd a lower on Tuesday so the real wait is for the lower and for PSA to assemble and ship my upper.
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8198/8...dfaa1475f2.jpg
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8197/8...4aabac8eb7.jpg
O yeah I also got some mags and 1000 rounds of ammo.

Munny$hot 11-16-2012 12:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by snowdog650 (Post 9704355)
Go to Discount Shooters Supply in Roseville. They have stripped Aero Precision lowers for around $80.

These guy have excellent prices on a lot of their stuff. Id go Aero Precision for 80.00 since they machine a lot of the lowers for different companies anyway. Save 40-80 dollars and skip on the roll mark.

Dubels 11-27-2012 3:58 PM

Ended up with a Stag lower from River City Gun Exchange, paid more than I thought I would but I like the service and proximity to me, which are things I am more than willing to pay for.

Still waiting on my order from Palmetto State Armory, which as resulted in Black Friday/Waiting Game Purchases along with ammo. Here is a picture of all the stuff that has arrived already:
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8063/8...bf72f64633.jpg

Basically waiting on my PSA upper and lower parts build kit to complete the rifle.

I got a Geissele SSA-E trigger during the Black Friday sales but I might not use it depending if I am satisfied with the stock trigger. The main reason is that I am going to order a CMMG .22lr upper and I figure more trigger time even with a .22lr would be more valuable than a good trigger at this point so it might be for sale or returned. Still not sure if I am going to keep the Strikefire or not because I have the EXPS-2, but it would be nice to have on my .22lr upper.

LAL6 11-27-2012 5:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dubels (Post 9802211)
Ended up with a Stag lower from River City Gun Exchange, paid more than I thought I would but I like the service and proximity to me, which are things I am more than willing to pay for.

Still waiting on my order from Palmetto State Armory, which as resulted in Black Friday/Waiting Game Purchases along with ammo. Here is a picture of all the stuff that has arrived already:
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8063/8...bf72f64633.jpg

Basically waiting on my PSA upper and lower parts build kit to complete the rifle.

I got a Geissele SSA-E trigger during the Black Friday sales but I might not use it depending if I am satisfied with the stock trigger. The main reason is that I am going to order a CMMG .22lr upper and I figure more trigger time even with a .22lr would be more valuable than a good trigger at this point so it might be for sale or returned. Still not sure if I am going to keep the Strikefire or not because I have the EXPS-2, but it would be nice to have on my .22lr upper.

I just went through the PSA waiting game... it took about a month to get my upper but the price was right.

Make sure you got everything you ordered from PSA, they didn't put my buffer tube assembly in the box so I had to wait another week. Seems to be happening with a lot of people's orders lately.

Good job on the build so far, looks like you're doing it right the first time.

You should've just bought 3 or 4 lowers cause now you're going to be hooked! I tried to build just 1 AR a few years ago, now somehow I ended up with 6

Mossy Man 11-27-2012 6:05 PM

I got my Surplus Ammo & Arms stripped lower at STS Guns in Folsom. Was $89 and $121 OTD.

The Gun Range also at one point had some Core15 stripped lowers for $99

Dubels 11-27-2012 9:35 PM

I do need to check out The Gun Range. I went with the Stag because it was easy for me to pick up at River City. I am already itching to build a SPR. Maybe after finals I will make the trek to all the surrounding stores and so which one has a deal on lowers and pick up 2 more. Right now all I am hoping for is that my Palmetto State Armory order comes in before 12/8/12, the day of my last final.

tanakasan 11-27-2012 10:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dubels (Post 9802211)
I got a Geissele SSA-E trigger during the Black Friday sales but I might not use it depending if I am satisfied with the stock trigger. The main reason is that I am going to order a CMMG .22lr upper and I figure more trigger time even with a .22lr would be more valuable than a good trigger at this point so it might be for sale or returned

You will like the SSA-E!

Once you try it, the standard mil-spec will not do. Your accuracy and fun factor will be increased! If you never try the Geissele, you will not know how really bad the stockers are...maybe thats a good thing!

Robert

DasBoost 11-30-2012 5:14 AM

Called Rainier arms yesterday morning as my flash hider and charging handle hadn't shipped yet. Added their .223 Wylde 18" SPR match barrel on to my order. Is it overkill for my purposes? Most likely yes. :D

Still need to get a stripped lower; the cheapest I've seen at my local stores is $150-175 + Taxes/DROS... :(

Dubels 11-30-2012 5:25 AM

Nice, I am thinking of a SPRish build next. I really hope that my upper comes soon or my bank account is really going to be empty. Hopefully, my last big purchase is tomorrow. Gotta add a .22lr upper to the mix.

I am going to go around tomorrow to just "window shop" been hearing about uppers in the Sac-Roseville area for $90ish + DROS and Tax. It wouldn't be bad to just have one around...

DasBoost 12-01-2012 2:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dubels (Post 9820204)
Nice, I am thinking of a SPRish build next. I really hope that my upper comes soon or my bank account is really going to be empty. Hopefully, my last big purchase is tomorrow. Gotta add a .22lr upper to the mix.

I am going to go around tomorrow to just "window shop" been hearing about uppers in the Sac-Roseville area for $90ish + DROS and Tax. It wouldn't be bad to just have one around...

Thinking the hour and change drive might be worth it if I can get a good deal and other parts to justify gas/time. Worst part about this is that I'm already planning other uppers/whole builds... This really is a disease. :eek: Your setup so far looks good. That pic of all your goodies from PSA has me excited for payday :43: Thinking of the ALG FCG; essentially a mil-spec trigger but tuned by Geissele. As much as I'd like a set of A1 handguards or a FF forend, I'm thinking of going with the MOE handguards for my 'A1 of 2012' build; really want to be able to use this rifle and not worry about babying it and trying to track down spares and backup handguards.

I've been browsing CMMG's site and looking into their .22 uppers; cost seems worth it compared to a conversion kit; heck, if I give myself enough creative license, I'll be able to justify another lower for it as well. :D

Dubels 12-01-2012 1:44 PM

That is my problem. I just sent out the money for my .22lr upper yesterday and if it was not for the rain and me finally able to get more than 2 hours of sleep I would be on the hunt for a cheaper lower for my .22 upper.


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