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  #1  
Old 01-31-2011, 6:22 PM
NaughtyMonkey NaughtyMonkey is offline
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Default Retro AR-15.

I want an AR-15 but I want one that looks like it was from Vietnam I did some research and its called a Retro AR-15 and I been trying to look for parts and stuff because I want to build it myself but I'm not fully sure where to start. I don't have a lot of money and I thought I could buy it piece by piece until its complete. But like I said I have no idea what I'm doing here. I'm a C&R guy and I thought its about time to get some thing more modern, a cheap round to go plinking when I'm bored, etc.

I'd like it to look something like this.

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Old 01-31-2011, 6:58 PM
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I am currently working to complete a couple of Retro AR15s so let me help you to get going! You can start by buying an M16A1 USGI Kit from Gunthings (link below) with the barrel. It's everything to need to complete the build sans the lower receiver.

http://gunthings.com/

Or you can buy this M16A1 Kit from Apex without the barrel:

https://www.apexgunparts.com/product...oducts_id/1484

The gun in your post is an M16 that the US Air Force used. This model is without the forward assist but if you like it better than the M16A1 (with teardrop forward assist) you can buy that slab side upper receiver (Gun Broker or EE on AR15.com) as well since they're not rare at all.


To build a correct looking Viet Nam era "late" M16 or M16A1, you need an A1 "full fence" lower from Nodak which has the Colt gray anodized coating to match the upper receiver:

http://www.nodakspud.com/AR%20Lowers.htm

If you decide to buy the Apex kit without the barrel, keep an eye on Gun Broker or the EE on AR15.com for an original Colt C Chrome Bore barrel. They do pop up for sale, however, they're sold fast since there a lots of retro builders out there looking for those barrels too!

Last edited by U5512; 01-31-2011 at 7:17 PM..
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Old 01-31-2011, 7:18 PM
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Hey thanks a bunch for the links! haha. Come with instructions on how to assemble? Well it was just an example picture.

Is this more like the Vietnam style?

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Old 01-31-2011, 7:41 PM
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It doesn't come with assembly instructions but you can find instructions online. The gun shown isn't Viet Nam style M16A1 since it has a "shell deflector", large round forward assist button, round A2 type hand guards, and A2 butt stock. To learn about different type of Viet Nam M16s, go here:

http://98.196.65.94/retroblackrifle/...Gde/603A1.html
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  #5  
Old 01-31-2011, 8:04 PM
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Thanks, yeah I'm a WW2 gun guy so anything after that I get lost since I havn't done alot of research, thanks for the info and links and help.
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  #6  
Old 01-31-2011, 8:58 PM
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Here's my M16A1 70's version. Original unissued Colt upper (she's no virgin no mo'!) NoDak Spud semiauto lower. Lower parts kit, I did the Naval Jelly trick to make them grey.





Two of the hardest things to find for many people are the correct trigger guard and the charging handle in grey! Have fun. I love this girl. She's light and accurate!
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Old 02-01-2011, 12:21 AM
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You can build one for about $500.

http://www.nodakspud.com is where you can find a retro receiver.
http://www.apexgunparts.com is where you can find the M16A1 parts kit for around $300-400

You're all done after that.

This is a good source for information if you need it: http://www.ar15.com/forums/forum.html?b=3&f=123
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Old 02-01-2011, 1:22 AM
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how much do one of these things weigh? (roughly)
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Old 02-01-2011, 7:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fate View Post
Here's my M16A1 70's version. Original unissued Colt upper (she's no virgin no mo'!) NoDak Spud semiauto lower. Lower parts kit, I did the Naval Jelly trick to make them grey.





Two of the hardest things to find for many people are the correct trigger guard and the charging handle in grey! Have fun. I love this girl. She's light and accurate!
Are you sure that muzzle device came on that upper with those HGs and that delta? Sorry to say I dont think thats possible. The delta tells me someone reworked it. I don't think there ever was a flat delta with an A2 MD...I could be wrong though. I have seen 1980s SF units with A1 uppers reworked to carbines so it is possible to get a unit with that configuration, but as an issued weapon I would say no.

If the MD was upgraded the Delta would have been upgraded too. Like I said..I could be wrong. When I sent weapons to be repaired or reworked they did so in refit packages, in the field anything was possible though. A field armory can do whatever they want within specs. Hell some SF units had some weird stuff.


Just checked AR15 retro, that MD did come issued for 1.5 years. the tell tale sign is the dust cover door + the lower slats on the MD.

Nice find, a 1968 A1 upper.

Last edited by dieselpower; 02-01-2011 at 7:55 AM..
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Old 02-01-2011, 8:40 AM
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What is the overall llenght of the early style rifles?
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  #11  
Old 02-01-2011, 9:26 AM
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Quote:
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What is the overall llenght of the early style rifles?
5/8" shorter than a modern 20" A2.
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Old 02-01-2011, 10:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NaughtyMonkey View Post
I want an AR-15 but I want one that looks like it was from Vietnam I did some research and its called a Retro AR-15 and I been trying to look for parts and stuff because I want to build it myself but I'm not fully sure where to start. I don't have a lot of money and I thought I could buy it piece by piece until its complete. But like I said I have no idea what I'm doing here. I'm a C&R guy and I thought its about time to get some thing more modern, a cheap round to go plinking when I'm bored, etc.

I'd like it to look something like this.


I absolutely love the look and feel of the triangular forend. It's just is awesome. And good luck on the build.
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Old 02-01-2011, 11:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G lock View Post
how much do one of these things weigh? (roughly)
About two henweighs (joke question- "So what's a Henweigh?" answer "About three pounds for a fat one!")

IIRC the unloaded M16A1 was 7.2 lbs with sling.
They are the most badass imho.
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Old 02-01-2011, 12:02 PM
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I'm with ya! I've been seriously thinking about just getting one a these:

http://www.hendersondefense.com/stor...fle-10p262.htm

and putting an open-end suppressor and a regular pistol grip on it. They went ahead and assembled rifles from the surplus kits floating around out there, and they have a CA-compliant model available with Raddlock and 10/30 mag. I spoze it wouldn't be completely pur sang, but it'd give me the ole-time vibe.
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Old 02-01-2011, 12:04 PM
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Ironwood Designs makes wood furniture in a Retro AR Style.
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  #16  
Old 02-01-2011, 3:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElvenSoul View Post
Ironwood Designs makes wood furniture in a Retro AR Style.
IWD comes unfinished and takes FOREVER to arrive. I got all my AK sets from IWD, they're really nice when complete, but you've got to have a lot of patience if you order from them.

http://www.precisionfirearms.com has wood furniture (not retro) that's more comfortable, cheaper, and ships much quicker.

I got sets from them on two of mine and they're way more comfortable than the triangles.

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Old 02-01-2011, 4:22 PM
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Thanks for all the info guys. I probably won't do this until I research some more and get my taxes done. Are all of these with the links provided .223? Is that what we used in Vietnam?
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  #18  
Old 02-01-2011, 4:47 PM
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i made mine way back in 1999 at the time the greyest lower was the cast dpms a-15 so that is what i am stuck with as my raw

and at that time bayonet lugs and threaded barrels were verboden
i've since added the prong hider but its still lugless
some guy had the correct triangle charging handle but wanted $75 i passed
still want a bolt carrier without the foward assist cutts but the chromie i got in there looks spiff



i like the triangle fore end but i can see how it can be annoying for a supply seargent
as i once went to a little surplus store and they had like 50 left side ones no rights wow what a bummer

the genius that came up with the identical top and bottom deserves a medal

eeew wood on an ar-15 thats like putting whitewalls on a ferrari
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Old 02-01-2011, 5:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bohoki View Post

eeew wood on an ar-15 thats like putting whitewalls on a ferrari

I think it looks pretty good.

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Old 02-01-2011, 6:20 PM
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nice
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Old 02-01-2011, 6:29 PM
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Ok another noob question I just thought of. The Bullet button and all that is on the lower right? Thats why the part kits are allowed in Cali, because they don't include a lower?

Also the part kits are .223 or ? I didn't see a caliber listed.
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Old 02-01-2011, 7:01 PM
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Yes, you need to buy a bullet button for the lower and remember that the kits DO NOT include the lower receivers (that's why shipping to Cali is OK for the part kits!!!). The lower receiver has to go through FFL and DROS for background check since it's considered long gun? Part kits are for 223/5.56 NATO which is standard.
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Old 02-01-2011, 7:47 PM
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Thank you U5512, thats exactly what I wanted to know. Does the Bullet buttons vary or they all just about the same?
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  #24  
Old 02-01-2011, 8:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tiger222 View Post
About two henweighs (joke question- "So what's a Henweigh?" answer "About three pounds for a fat one!")

IIRC the unloaded M16A1 was 7.2 lbs with sling.
They are the most badass imho.
It's lighter than that: ~6.37 lbs.
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Old 02-01-2011, 8:49 PM
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waiting on a grey spud lower,out of stock of course. what is the navel jelly gray trick?
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Old 02-01-2011, 8:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NaughtyMonkey View Post
Thank you U5512, thats exactly what I wanted to know. Does the Bullet buttons vary or they all just about the same?
I used the standard bullet button and in fact you can buy from Calguns group buy here and save $5 off MSRP and the local tax!

http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/s...d.php?t=389154
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Old 02-01-2011, 9:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve92407 View Post
waiting on a grey spud lower,out of stock of course. what is the navel jelly gray trick?
All of the current lower parts kits are packerized in black and if you use the Nodak gray lower (to match the Colt upper), the black parts of the lower parts kit don't match the color of the lower. Therefore, retro builders use naval jelly to lighten the dark packerized finish of the parts toward gray to match the lower. The naval jelly is used mainly on the trigger, trigger guard, pivot and take down pins, hammer and trigger pins, bolt catch, and magazine catch on the left side of the receiver. Or you can buy all of those mentioned parts already packerized in gray to match the lower.

DPMS lower parts kit is known for turning gray with the naval jelly trick.
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Old 02-02-2011, 1:06 PM
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Thanks for the great Info, much appreciated!
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Old 02-02-2011, 2:22 PM
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Here's mine. I traded a pistol for it here on the marketplace. The lower is black but whatever...

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Old 02-02-2011, 9:24 PM
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Does anyone know if the LPK's that SARCO (part AR0001) are for an A1 or A2? I am looking for a A1 LPK along with A1 stock, buffer/spring/tube and grip. Sarco has them but they are not clear on the LPK.
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Old 02-07-2011, 12:38 PM
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Hi, Guys. I'm looking for a AR for Three gun and told my brother I would love to have a repro of a 'Nam era M16/AR15 and he sent me this thread. Are these parts kits and lowers really obtainable in CA??? I noticed that some of the vendor links from NoDak Spud won't ship to CA. If I could for real get a parts kit and lower mail order, that would be great. My FFL guy deals with all kinds of wild and wooley stuff so I would have no problem there.

Am I dreaming or is this for real?

Joe
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Old 02-07-2011, 2:41 PM
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sarcoinc.com has both Colt a1 and a2 complete kits (all that is needed is the receiver and assembly) under $500.

I just finished my M16 A2 kit and am looking at getting a A1 now. it came with the original FH but since I went featureless I changed it to a brake.

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Old 02-07-2011, 4:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slomofo View Post
You can build one for about $500.

http://www.nodakspud.com is where you can find a retro receiver.
http://www.apexgunparts.com is where you can find the M16A1 parts kit for around $300-400

You're all done after that.

This is a good source for information if you need it: http://www.ar15.com/forums/forum.html?b=3&f=123
How you going to do that? The kit from Apex without the barrel is $385. Where can you get a barrel and lower for $115? I'm just curious because I'd like to have a $500 retro M16.
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Old 02-07-2011, 5:48 PM
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I think just a tad under $500 is the best price I've seen for everything without the lower. Lowers are getting cheaper now too!. I think I saw an ad for $60 Aero lowers in the Commercial forum. So I can see it being around $600 complete depending on your transfer fees
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Old 02-11-2011, 1:21 PM
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How does the naval jelly process work? Do you leave it on for a certain amount of time and does it require scrubbing?

Last edited by Mac Attack; 02-11-2011 at 11:18 PM..
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