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Kemosabe 11-13-2012 04:36 PM

Building Your Own vs Buying Already Made
I have asked this question on another forum, but have not had any replies.

Since joining the forum, I have become interested in the AR. Guys at my LGS have been talking about building their own. Not having much experience with them and I am considering the possibility in owning one, if you were looking to add one to your collection would you build your own or buy one already made. Which company would be the best source for components and parts, and what experiences have you had with the companies you have dealt with.

Thanks in advance for your help!

potentialglock 11-13-2012 04:40 PM

Brown ells is great for all things gun related. If this is your first AR I recommended d buying one pre made. Colt, Remington, Smith and Wesson, FN all make good AR platforms

ZeusEcho 11-13-2012 05:46 PM

Highly recommend building it. You can pick all the parts you want and will then really know the rifle inside and out. It's fairly easy if you are at all mechanically inclined and only requires a small amount of specialized tools.

Whichever path you choose I would highly recommend that you first read the stickies in the AR15 section, especially AgentTikki's Primer!!! Then you'll have a better understanding of what kind of AR would best suit your needs.

I built my first one in July, just completed a 2nd and have 3 stripped lowers in the safe waiting for attention. They multiply when you're not looking.

On second thought, if you want to avoid BRD, which is highly contagious and not covered by insurance, forget you even started this thread. :)

Also browse around the AR setion here and the forum for lot's of info on brands, dealers, and building your own.

danf_fl 11-13-2012 05:46 PM

I purchased a stripped lower and a complete upper with a lower build kit.
By the time sights, mags and ammo were added, my bill was pushing $725.

Was it worth the trouble of assembly? IMO, yes and no.

The sights were not included in the kit. I had to figure which sights I wanted and had to go to another source for those.

Kemosabe 11-13-2012 06:05 PM


It's fairly easy if you are at all mechanically inclined and only requires a small amount of specialized tools.

What type of specialized tools would you need?

ZeusEcho 11-13-2012 07:02 PM

Upper, lower and barrel vice blocks
Barrel nut wrench- You could buy an assembled upper to avoid this but installing the barrel is not difficult and depending on the hadguard or rail you choose you may need to change the barrel nut anyway.
Castle nut wrench
Roll pin punches
Other punches
The rest of the tools like alan wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers etc you probably already have.

Brownells is a good source for the tools.

Old_Crow 11-14-2012 12:17 PM

When you buy a gun you get a warranty. Some AR-15's have a lifetime warranty. If this is your first AR-15 I recommend buying an AR. After you shoot a while and make friends who have custom built AR's you will have a better idea of what you want and don't want in an AR. I have two DPMS custom built AR-15's. But I built mine at a time when you could go to a gun shop and buy a kit for $400 plus tax. Today you can buy a gun just as cheap as you can build it.

I upgraded the sights that came with my AR-15's. They had Williams plastic sights in the kits. I upgraded them to nice metal peep sights. Sights aren't cheap! I paid $80 a set for mine and there are many that cost much more.

rhyno13 11-14-2012 12:21 PM

I would build one and put the parts that I desire into the weapon. Plus I can build it for less than I can buy a similar one for

Kemosabe 11-14-2012 01:10 PM

Some of you say you can build cheaper than buying. From what I've seen they sell for $1,200 and up, and some are over $2,000. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong website.

potentialglock 11-14-2012 02:15 PM

I can find good ARs for 600-900$

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