Franken-AR... would appreciate any input/info...

Discussion in 'AR-15 Discussion' started by RevJammer, Sep 8, 2014.

  1. RevJammer

    RevJammer Member

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    Ok... here I am again needing information and input.

    This is always my go to place when something like this comes up. First off, I am NOT an AR expert or a gunsmith, I am simply a guy who likes firearms. I know a little, but more importantly I know that I don't know enough.

    Now on to the story...

    My brother decided to buy an AR not long after the Sandy Hook situation. I tend to be the families "go to" guy on gun stuff so he asked me about it. I told him at the time that I, personally, would be uncomfortable with this purchase - both the price and the lack of information. I also told him that it was his money and if he felt comfortable with the principals... do what he thought was best.

    This AR was a "custom build" a friend of a friend put together for a guy, and when it was finished the guy "couldn't come up with the money" and the builder needed to move it; so he could give my brother a "good deal".

    Shortly thereafter my brother called me and said that the thing wouldn't sight in he couldn't hardly even get it on paper, let alone bullseyes. My brother lives 400 miles away from me. After a couple of months, I got up to my brothers and could tell that the front sight (gas block?) was visibly out of line with the rear sight. I showed my brother and he took it back to the guy to get it "fixed".

    Several weeks later when he got it back, the front sight (gas block?) was gone it had a quad rail on it with a fold down BUIS. The bottom of the barrel now has a "groove" where I'm assuming the old gas block was staked(?). When my brother complained, the guy threw on a screw on "laser" (on the barrel in front of the gas block and a "red dot" scope (both of these probably cost the guy about $20 altogether).

    The fold down front sight is higher than the rear sight and the "retention ring" (holds the back end of the quad rail) will not sit "even" (the bottom of the ring is held back towards the receiver just a fraction. I have removed the quad rail and re-attached it and it still does the same thing.

    I am going to list as much of the details as I know about this weapon and some pics, you guys feel free to offer any input or information you can. Thanks in advance for any assistance.

    Lower= Omni (American Tactical Imports)
    Upper= RRA UTE2 (integral rear sight and flat top)
    Barrel= 20"
    quad rail= approx 11.5"

    It was supposed to have "Colt" lower parts, but I have no idea if it does or what to look for to be able to tell.

    Now the Pics... I included a pic of the gas tube going into the upper, just because it looked hinky to me...
     

    Attached Files:

  2. hardluk1

    hardluk1 Active Member

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    Tell your brother to get his money back , Period
     

  3. Quentin

    Quentin New Member

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    Well as you said it is a FrankenAR. Looks slapped together by a bubba with cheap or scrounged parts including the polymer lower. Sounds like he's had it too long to get back his money especially since he probably paid an inflated Sandy Hook price. I'd keep working on it to get it working right, with today's great prices for ARs it doesn't have much value complete or parted out.

    Maybe get it working, keep it as a beater then buy/build a good AR while prices are good. Next panic he can see if someone else is as desperate as he was. It would be ideal for a mall ninja with money who never actually shoots it!
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2014
  4. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    FrankenGun indeed. I can't imagine anyone 'custom' building a heavy 20" SS (heavier still, being RRA) on a cheap and weightless OMNI lower. It just doesn't make sense, unless you're slapping a buncha parts together out of whatever can be found in a panic market. Must be a really front-heavy gun. There are other little details that probably don't add up as well. It's a spare parts gun for sure.

    I'd part it out or sell it off cheap. My guess is that'll cause less pain than the cost of getting it right. The gun might work fine...but all the little details that don't fit would drive my OCD over a cliff.

    Anyone who played with Legos as a kid can assemble a functional AR. The skill is in understanding the parts, quality materials, and build scheme that will acheive the desired final product. Certain aspects ought to compliment each other (gas system, barrel length, weight ratios, etc). An ideal build doesn't have to be $2500...it can also be $800.
     
  5. okdonk

    okdonk New Member

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    If you don't mind telling.. how much did your brother pay for it?
     
  6. RevJammer

    RevJammer Member

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    Not an option at this point...

    I agree with this assessment, any suggestions on making it "right" (or righter)?

    My thoughts exactly....



    $1,100.00 with 2 or 3 mags and a couple hundred rounds of ammo...


    RJ
     
  7. Quentin

    Quentin New Member

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    I agree, it has to be terribly front heavy, way too much for that poor polymer lower. The upper and lower need to be separated, probably parted out. Or if he wants to keep one or the other he could use the lower with a lighter upper, a 22lr upper would be ideal. The heavy upper needs to be on a 7075-T6 lower.

    Sadly there were a lot of hard luck AR stories right after Sandy Hook.
     
  8. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    Ouch! I see about $400 worth of parts.
     
  9. therewolf

    therewolf New Member

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    Even with a complete Colt system, a long bull barrel is going to

    make the rifle front heavy. I love my HBAR, but balance is

    no part of the picture.
     
  10. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    That's a pretty tame mistake compared to much of what was happening in early 2013. Bud's was auctioning off scores of Bushmaster C15 rifles one at a time, and they were all going for north of $2000. You can buy the same rifle today for under $600 (I've seen it under $500).

    A lot of folks paid 3X normal prices for parts, ammo, mags, and full rifles. Your brother's gonna eat a few hundred bucks on this one, but his lesson is coming cheaper than it did for many.
     
  11. fsted2a

    fsted2a Active Member

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    I see a $300.00 gun at best.
     
  12. fsted2a

    fsted2a Active Member

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    There were a lot of horror stories about the price gouging of AR's and ammo after Sandy Hook. Add this to the number.
     
  13. jjfuller1

    jjfuller1 New Member

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    that is a ugly rifle. my advice. sell it off to a gun shop or anyone who wants it. probly gonna go cheap only couple hundred bucks. but thats a rifle that just needs to be laid to rest... take his money and put it toward a much better quality rifle, or parts to build his own. you will feel better and probly sleep better at night knowing this rifle is not your problem any longer.
     
  14. fsted2a

    fsted2a Active Member

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    ATI AR's are going for about $450-$500 retail in this neck of the woods, and they spend a lot of time on the rack. When you can get a Colt branded rifle for about $700, no sense in paying that high a price for the bottom of the barrel AR.
     
  15. jakebrake

    jakebrake New Member

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    and, another 800 clams in gunsmith fees.
     
  16. sweeper22

    sweeper22 New Member

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    I'd argue for $500-600. The buyer learns a hard lesson and eats $500 or so. That sucks, but many of us have endured more expensive lessons than that.

    Complete RRA upper with sights and a quad rail should fetch $300-400 on the resale market. Maybe even $500 if the parts are right.

    A complete lower (even if it is ATI/OMNI) is worth $100 to someone working on a cheapo/fun project. Better still if it has a decent stock.

    A few mags plus a couple hundred rounds of ammo is probably worth around $100 to most of us.


    Would I buy it for $600? Probably not. But if it's parted out or re-purposed correctly, there could easily be $600 of value there.
     
  17. fsted2a

    fsted2a Active Member

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    ATI's are going for $500 brand new out of the box here, some places less; I based my value on the scratches and dings I saw. I agree 100% on the rest of your post though.
     
  18. RevJammer

    RevJammer Member

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    Thanks to all of you for your responses. I spent some time a couple evenings this week to take it down, clean it up, tinker with it, and put it back together.

    I put a MagPul folding front sight on it spent about 40 rounds dialing it in, and then shot this 5-shot group. This was at 50 yards, open sights (and my eyes are NOT anything to write home about). This is a 3" sticker.

    I had no problem with its operation, no FTF's or FTE's. I put about 200 rounds through it all total. Yes it is still front heavy and it is not the prettiest thing I've ever shot, but it looks to be an adequate shooter. My brother will not sell it and take a loss he would rather just hold on to it. I have convinced him to upgrade to a better quality firearm in the near future. He will just relegate this one to a range plinker.

    Thanks again!

    RJ
     

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  19. SSGN_Doc

    SSGN_Doc Well-Known Member

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    If you've got it running, he can buy a new lower to move things over to. He can also upgrade the handguard. Then he can either selll the old lower and HG or he can build a dedicated .22.


    Good job getting it running.
     
  20. RevJammer

    RevJammer Member

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    SSGN,

    I have already made those exact suggestions... sent him links to PSA for a good, inexpensive lower. He wants to send me the money to do the work, but I would really rather he buy the parts and fix it himself. Crazy thing is, he is INCREDIBLY good with his hands (mechanically speaking). I haven't seen anything he can't fix, but for some reason he is standoffish about a project like this.

    Funny thing... Of all my family, I am the least mechanically inclined (except for my sister), but all the rest of my family comes to me for firearms related projects. I don't mind helping, but would be nice to know they can/will fix these things if/when necessary.

    RJ