Firearm & Gun Forum - FireArmsTalk.com > Long Guns > Auto & Semi-Auto Discussion > AR-15 Discussion > Best AR-15 80% lower?

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Old 07-12-2013, 11:20 PM   #11
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Yeah I'm sure you're right. I like challenges though so I was attracted to the 80. And it seems quite easy when using a jig. Everything is easy until you try it though...

As for buying a complete lower, the whole reason I started researching an 80% in the first place is to avoid ffl.

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Old 07-13-2013, 06:21 AM   #12
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There a crap load o 80% manufacturers here in SoCal. I've used 3 different types. So far my favorite was KE Arms. A local machine shop owner has partnered up with another machine shop in Arizona to produce them there , and sell them here or on the Internet. Than you can come to his shop and rent the CNC to finish up. It's a great, and legal way of doing it. If you manufacture the lowers, you can not rent a CNC to anyone to finish it at the same location . That's why he operates in 2 states. Anyways, they have a couple options of 80%, raw or anodized. I don't think I would try to drill it my self with a jig. Not sure where you live, but I know more and more machine shops are popping up that will rent the CNC to you.

http://www.kearms.com/

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Old 07-13-2013, 01:41 PM   #13
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I ordered an 80% from Ares Armor last year. I knew they were out of stock, which was fine. BUT, they charged my CC right away, and then refused to update or keep in touch about anything. After 3 or so months, I finally asked for my money back. I would be careful with them.

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Old 07-13-2013, 01:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clr8ter
I ordered an 80% from Ares Armor last year. I knew they were out of stock, which was fine. BUT, they charged my CC right away, and then refused to update or keep in touch about anything. After 3 or so months, I finally asked for my money back. I would be careful with them.
There was an entire thread about them and their scam. My best friend ordered 5 lowers last October. They gave him the run around for 8 months. He happened to come to SoCal on vacation and to hang out with me. I took him down to Oceanside where Ares is at, those scammers had at least a hundred of them behind the counter selling to walk in customers. Their excuse was that they were billets and not the forgings he ordered. He said he wanted to cancel his order, but I told him to have them give him the equivalent value in the billets. They gave him 3 billets. You should be glad you canceled because they got busted and shut down for a while. They were manufacturing them in the same building that they were letting people finish them. They are scammers and have the worst customer service. While we were in there arguing with them, a few people walked in to cancel their orders as well. Ares sucks!
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Old 07-13-2013, 01:56 PM   #15
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No $hit!? Oh well.....I finally bought a Colt LE6920 instead. Just as well, I don't need ANOTHER complicated project anyhow....

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Old 07-13-2013, 04:16 PM   #16
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The actual quality difference from one 'brand' to the next is nominal. Even the difference in Gen1 vs Gen2 (billet) offers minimal advantages, IMO. The lower receiver is simply not under a great deal of stress. Heck, Gen1 lowers are lighter!

But having the right brand can and will pay dividends if you sell. This is why I try to build many of my 'soon to be sold' guns on Noveske lowers. After fees, I'll pay maybe $150 for a PSA lower, and $180-220 for a Noveske. But a gun built on a Noveske will sell faster, and for $100-200 more. Is it one iota better? Not likely. But it ends up being a sound investment.

I'd imagine the same applies to 80% lowers. Buy a good one from a reputable company, and disregard the hype.

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Old 07-13-2013, 07:43 PM   #17
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Crap....You know, I apologize, I totally didn't read the 80% part of the title.

And here I was going on and on about standard finished lowers........I have personally only used Tactical Machining lowers, went in on a group buy with some friends some years back, I think they had a special were if you bought like 10+ you could get them for under $50, in the raw. We milled ours and had a local FFL anodize them. I've fired thousands of rounds thorough mine and never had any issues.


Just keep in mind. All Forged blanks are just about the same. I think there is only 4 forges that make them. With the exception of MEGA and the marking, the forgings are identical. Its how your finish them that matters. Since the startup costs of forging are very very expensive, no one wants the change the design. The unit costs are very cheap tho, which is why you can find some finished units for under $50.



Billets are different since they start with block of alloy, then shave them to whatever spec they design. Its a more flexible system, so they can change their design on the fly without investing in any more capital. Billets do take longer to produce, per unit costs are higher, which is reflected in their pricing.


Hope this helps you better.

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Old 07-13-2013, 08:05 PM   #18
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I know there are good companies out there. The hard part is finding a good company with stuff in stock... I ended up ordering from Ares. I contacted them before I placed my order to see when it would be sent. They said immediately. Everything people then said about Ares got me scared so I tried to cancel. It did take a very long time to get a hold of them, but I finally was able to speak with a woman on the phone. She told me it should arrive by the 20th and that it shipped last night. I explained to her my concern, and she said those were issues with people on back order. As long as I get my product I don't care. Guess I was just one of the lucky ones. We shall see. Thanks for all the input. I will let you all know if/when I recieve the product. If I don't get it then I may be headed to cali to raise some hell. You're all invited >=)

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Old 07-13-2013, 08:06 PM   #19
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You know that old saying.....It's not what on the outside, it's whats on the inside that counts.

Reliability and function for your lower receiver is going to be dependent on how your finish your lower. If you are able (its not too difficult) to mill it to spec, then you are golden. Getting all the holes in the right position and dimension, getting the right thickness of the walls of the fire control pocket, getting all your roll pins and lower parts into place the right way, is going to be way more important than whether its forged or billet, 7075 or 6061. Get a forged one. They are cheaper, and they are all the same. Mega forged excluded, but I've never seen a Mega 80% on the market.

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Old 07-13-2013, 08:30 PM   #20
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There been a lot of Drama with Ares. They have been good to me, but this was before the panic, and before they staged a coup ousting Dimitri. I've met and spoken with Dimitri more than a few times and my impression of him was that he's a stand up kind of guy and a fellow enthusiast. Long story short, he's back in charge, and things are looking up. To be fair tho, I don't like to backorder anything and and never back ordered from them.

I like them, and have found that they make thoughtful, well made products. I highly recommend their Husky Amentum sling, i have 3. I really like their Effin-A compensator, and they are releasing a 2nd gen unit soon. To each their own.

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