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Old 08-28-2012, 12:17 PM   #1
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Default Million Dollar AR Build Question

Guys/Gals,

I know this has been discussed a million times and there are countless threads I could search through, but since Im at home watching it rain I feel like typing more than reading.. Here goes..

What are my best non-expensive options for building an AR (my first)? I plan on using it for hunting and target as well. I will be rough on it, so I dont need something that is "full" of plastic, but a little plastic in the right places wont hurt. I dont want .223 since I already have a mini 14 so Im thinking about either 308 or 6.5, what are your opinions? Since I want to keep this cheap, what upper/lower should I go with? I want it to be more accurate than cool looking. I dont need a quad rail, but will need two, so should I go ahead and get the quad or can I save some cash by getting a "bi-rail" or will I regret not having four in the future? I know standard twist is 1/9, but can I get something tighter for more long range accuracy without breaking the bank? Can I save some cash by not having a forward assist or do I need to go ahead and get a reciever that has one? And, do I save money by not buying assembled recievers or save time and hassle and get one assembled?

All of these questions come to this in a nutshell..

IF YOU WERE GOING TO BUILD YOUR FIRST AR, WHAT COMPONENTS WOULD YOU GET AND IN WHAT CALIBER? IE; BRAND/MATERIAL..
Since alot of you are sitting at home today and probably nothing to do, can you please reply back with each component broken down with price? I really want to keep this thing under 750.00 w/o optics..

Thanks a ton ya'll
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Old 08-28-2012, 12:51 PM   #2
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Youre not going to build a .308 or 6.5 for the price your looking at very easily.

If you hang around the large AR forums you MIGHT be able to piece one together used for around that price but its going to take awhile to find what you want. DPMS does offer a low end .308 for a couple hundred more then your price and this is new and already built. However its pretty low end, though honestly it would probably be just fine for hunting and casual plinking.
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:27 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JD7.62 View Post
Youre not going to build a .308 or 6.5 for the price your looking at very easily.

If you hang around the large AR forums you MIGHT be able to piece one together used for around that price but its going to take awhile to find what you want. DPMS does offer a low end .308 for a couple hundred more then your price and this is new and already built. However its pretty low end, though honestly it would probably be just fine for hunting and casual plinking.
Yeah, if I end up buying one new that is already built, I will probably go the DPMS route..
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:30 PM   #4
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I would probably sway you away from a .308. An AR-10 is noticably more expensive than an AR-15. The cheapest AR-10s run very close to $1000. For most small game here .223 works just fine.

You really don't need a rail to mount things either. The Magpul MOE handguards allow you to mount small sections of rail at multiple angles and locations.

You also don't need to free float either. The true advantage of free floating is that the weight of your accessories and the weight of your hand-hold on the handguard won't affect zero. If you keep the same items on your handguard and zero it it will repeat everytime. Keep in mind even if you do swap items or use a heavy hold on your handguards, at the ranges people typically hunt here, it will be a non-issue since any shift will be minimal.

As for twist rate, I recommend 1x9 for most people. The 1x9 allows you to use lighter bullets than 55gr. There are a good number of varmint bullets that are in the 30-40 grain. The upper limit for 1x9 is 75gr and maybe (test to be sure) 77gr. The only reason to use 1x7 is if your going to be using bullets between 55gr and 77gr (technically you can go 100gr, but the bullets are too long to fit in the mag). Keep in mind that these are for .223 bullets.

I don't know much about 6.5, 6.8 or .300 AAC. .223 fits my intended purposes just fine. I often think that the new intermediate calibers are just a solution looking for a problem. One of the reasons that the above three calibers were invented for was because the M855 cartridge the military uses is junk, but modern loads the MK318 have solved that issue.

My favorite place to buy quality parts on a budget is Palmetto State Armory. I also like to keep everything within the same brand whenever building.

Buy a $99 lower from them.

http://palmettostatearmory.com/index...r15-lower.html

Get a Lower Parts Kit (LPK). $104 with stock, buffer spring, buffer and buffer tube. Your going to need a castle nut wrench to put on the buffer tube. I have one and can help you out if needed (I'm in Pensacola).

http://palmettostatearmory.com/index...build-kit.html

Get a 6.8 upper for about $500 with BCG and charging handle. Make sure you get MOE handguards if you want to mount things to them. Of course you can also forgo a bi-pod. Whatever happened to sandbags and slings?

http://palmettostatearmory.com/index...te-uppers.html

Put it together and be happy.

Last edited by Gravity3694; 08-28-2012 at 01:37 PM.
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:35 PM   #5
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I've got spikes LPKs for $70
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Old 08-28-2012, 03:07 PM   #6
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Thanks alot.. That is alot of good info there.. As far as the caliber, I already have a 223 that I kill critters with, but I want something larger that I can take out and kill pigs/deer with if I want. Obviously, I will have to make a decision between cost and size of the round since the larger-the more expensive..
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Old 08-28-2012, 06:06 PM   #7
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Ive always wanted to build a 9mm AR carbine, mainly for ammo savings, seems like people who own 9mm ARs are less likely to sell them than 556/308
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Old 08-28-2012, 07:45 PM   #8
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If I were getting an AR to hunt and was on a budget it would be 6.8SPC II or a 300 BLK. If it were my only/first AR I'd be obligated to have it in .223, however.

You CANNOT build a .308 AR for anything close to what you can put together an AR15 for. FYI, AR-10 is an Armalite model designation... many people throw it around as an overarching category of an AR with a 308 chambering but that isn't correct. Either way, for a rough estimate expect one of the 308s to cost you about double of what you can do for the cheapest option for an AR15. Even the lowers are around 3x the cost and not all lowers fit all uppers and not all magazines are universal, etc. The 308 is a totally different beast with many varieties in parts. IMHO unless you really want a semi, get a bolt action for the bigger calibers.

Back to the AR15s...
Get some cheapo lower from a reputable company like Palmetto State Armory, who also has lower parts kits on sale from time to time. In more depth:

Lower: Palmetto State
Upper: Spikes
Lower Parts: http://www.firearms4less.com/store/e...o-trigger.html something like that since there is no reason to get an LPK trigger, if you want accuracy you'll end up swapping it out
Barrel: Again go with PSA, they have decent barrels on the cheap, especially if you can find one of their daily deals
Stock: Anything cheap that fits you, Magpul is usually a safe bet
Handguard: Magpul again is good, you can get the MOE grip and add rails as necessary, and its light
Trigger: Geissele or Timney
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Old 08-29-2012, 03:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bottlerocket View Post
If I were getting an AR to hunt and was on a budget it would be 6.8SPC II or a 300 BLK. If it were my only/first AR I'd be obligated to have it in .223, however.

You CANNOT build a .308 AR for anything close to what you can put together an AR15 for. FYI, AR-10 is an Armalite model designation... many people throw it around as an overarching category of an AR with a 308 chambering but that isn't correct. Either way, for a rough estimate expect one of the 308s to cost you about double of what you can do for the cheapest option for an AR15. Even the lowers are around 3x the cost and not all lowers fit all uppers and not all magazines are universal, etc. The 308 is a totally different beast with many varieties in parts. IMHO unless you really want a semi, get a bolt action for the bigger calibers.

Back to the AR15s...
Get some cheapo lower from a reputable company like Palmetto State Armory, who also has lower parts kits on sale from time to time. In more depth:

Lower: Palmetto State
Upper: Spikes
Lower Parts: http://www.firearms4less.com/store/e...o-trigger.html something like that since there is no reason to get an LPK trigger, if you want accuracy you'll end up swapping it out
Barrel: Again go with PSA, they have decent barrels on the cheap, especially if you can find one of their daily deals
Stock: Anything cheap that fits you, Magpul is usually a safe bet
Handguard: Magpul again is good, you can get the MOE grip and add rails as necessary, and its light
Trigger: Geissele or Timney

I already have hunting rifles and I already have a semi in 223 with my mini. I just would like to have something in an AR frame that has some "backbone" to it. It seems like buiding a 10 is going to be outside of what I want to spend so I will have to go with a larger caliber in the 15 frame. I had a buddy of mine mention the 300, so I am going to look into that..
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Old 08-29-2012, 03:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bamagun View Post
I already have hunting rifles and I already have a semi in 223 with my mini. I just would like to have something in an AR frame that has some "backbone" to it. It seems like buiding a 10 is going to be outside of what I want to spend so I will have to go with a larger caliber in the 15 frame. I had a buddy of mine mention the 300, so I am going to look into that..
If you go with .300 AAC there is a lot more compatible with the .223 parts. The only thing needed to convert a .223 AR-15 to .300 is a different barrel.

I know you don't want another .223, but the important thing to note here is that .223 parts are cheaper (because they are in higher demand) than buying parts that only work with 6.8.
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