Rookie Looking For Some Advice

Discussion in 'AR-15 Discussion' started by FightinTexasAggie, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    Hi everyone, I stumbled across this site and it seems like a good place for a rookie like me to get some help. I have been looking at getting an AR-15 for quite a while. I have been doing a lot of research, and it seems like building my own is the best option. I have shot a lot of guns, including AR-15's, which I fell in love with, but have never taken apart or gained much knowledge on how the guns actually work. I have always been fascinated with firearms and this seems like a great way for me to start building my collection.

    I found a website that offers a complete guide to building an AR-15, Build Your Own AR-15 Rifle and Save Big Money! Has anyone used this guide or heard anything about it? Would it be feasible for someone with zero knowledge on gun parts and how they work to put together something like this? Where do I start? I have been saving money for a while for a gun and have $1200 saved up, and from what Ive seen I could put together a pretty sweet rifle for that amount, or get just a basic one from the store.

    Thanks
     
  2. Dick Manley

    Dick Manley New Member

    30
    0
    0
    With $1200 you could buy a Smith&Wesson and be gtg, all you would need to add after that is an optic, ammo and mags.

    Where are you located

    -DM-
     

  3. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

    23,972
    1
    0
    Welcome to the Forum FTA -

    Someone with no previous knowledge can ABSOLUTELY build an AR from the ground up. We have several members here who have done exactly that.

    My young padwan, junho, is a college kid who came to the site in your exact state. Here is his build thread that he did by himself, and the parts he used, the questions he asked and what he ended up with.

    I am a HUGE proponent of building your own weapon over buying one complete for several reasons.

    First, you get to decide on the quality of the parts you want, so you can choose what parts you want, not what parts come with the package.

    Second, with the knowledge gained by putting it together, you can take it apart, you can inspect it, you can clean it correctly and you can maintain it.

    So many people throw some cash at a weapon and expect it to be the solution by itself. Which is great if you work in a gun shop like I do ( part time ) we get orders for complete guns all the time. But how many people really get into the inner workings of their weapon and KNOW how it works? Probably a lot less than you would like to believe.

    Now, conversely, I could throw a box of parts on the table in front of junho and tell him to assemble me a working AR, which he could do. He can also self diagnose a problem, and as you can read, make changes to his weapon based on what HE wants to do to it.

    Many people have done it & you can too.

    The guys here are all willing to help and they would all like to see another AR in a good home.

    JD
     
  4. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    What websites have good quality parts that yall would recommend to start piecing my AR together?

    Does anyone have any experience with the buildyourownar15.com website and is it a good guide to buy for $7?

    A friend mentioned something about having to ship the trigger assembly to a gun shop to get the proper registration done? If so, what is the process for doing this? Im assuming just call the gun shop and talk to them before ordering?

    I am excited about getting started piecing it together soon and spending lots of time on these forums.
     
  5. DonnyKC

    DonnyKC New Member

    202
    0
    0
    why pay for the manaul when you can find the info for free.. there's some build up pages on here .. and can also find other sites that offer the info for free.
     
  6. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

    23,972
    1
    0
    When you see your friend again, kick him in the junk. :p

    You can have a trigger shipped right to your home. There is no need for an FFL for any part OTHER than the lower receiver.

    A step by step guide can be had from Brownell's, I believe for free, and we have one here on how to build a lower in the Knowledge Base for supporting members. Youtube has several videos on how to build an AR and I am sure the website you reference has a good one for $7.

    Look. Seriously. This is NOT a complex weapon. If you can insert tab "A" in slot "B" and can figure out how a spring works, you can build one of these.

    These aren't hard to put together. Everyone can do it if you are willing to get your hands a little dirty and try it out.

    The guys here will gladly help you out. I am SURE that you can build a very good AR from kits from places like Brownells, Del Ton and MidwayUSA.

    JD
     
  7. canebrake

    canebrake New Member

    21,833
    3
    0
    Or you could spend near half of that and have this:

    [​IMG]

    Or spend the total and get this:

    [​IMG]

    That's a Colt government and a Romey 7.62x39 w/optics!
     
  8. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    Wow, so much information to learn and so many decisions to make. As of now, I am leaning towards the flat top look (who knows how many times that will change by the time I order).

    From the little research I have done so far (much more will be done before any decisions are made), I can either order a full kit with everything except the stripped lower receiver, or order each individual kit which seems to be the better option to get exactly what I want.

    If I go the route of ordering each individual kit, what all do I need to pick. Is there any checklist anywhere to make sure that I order everything I need and not miss any parts?
     
  9. Bighead

    Bighead New Member

    643
    0
    0
    Here are some sites that should hold your browsing interest for awhile. I'm sure others will have good websites to recommend also.

    Brownells - World's Largest Supplier of Firearm Accessories, Gun Parts and Gunsmithing Tools

    MidwayUSA — Shooting Supplies, Reloading, Gunsmithing, Hunting, Ammunition, Gun Parts & Rifle Scopes

    YHM, Yankee Hill Machine Co., Inc. – Makers of High Quality Firearms, Accessories & Sound Suppressors | Home

    LaRue Tactical Home Page

    CMMG, Inc

    Rock River Arms:

    Here is a link to a very good AR thread on another forum. Lots of talk later on in the thread, but pockets of good info make the whole thread worth reading.
    So you want to buy an AR-15, huh? - Police Forums & Law Enforcement Forums @ Officer.com
     
  10. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    Ive been looking around and I think I decided exactly what I want. this is exactly how I want my gun to look, but I dont think I need top of the line parts. Mine will basically be for defense, shooting coyotes, hogs, or anything else that threatens my livestock or property. Plus some target shooting.

    Can someone tell me what parts I need to look for?
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2009
  11. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

    23,972
    1
    0
    You have good taste. YHM is a great company.

    The first thing you need is either A) A Stripped Upper & Lower or B) A complete lower.

    Baring any seriously ridiculious legislation with the new AWB, once you have a lower in your possession, you should be able to build the rest of the weapon, at will, even if a ban goes into effect. Parts will always be available.....

    JD
     
  12. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    If all goes as planned, I most likely will order the lower tomorrow. I have decided on this lower receiver , and will possibly replace the grip with another one. I am thinking about this buttstock to go with it, but I am not sure how it will look. I have also decided this is the upper that I want to go with.

    Eventually I will add different mounts like a grip on the front, a decent flashlight, and better sights, probably red dot. Im not sure if the buttstock I want will look good on my setup though.
     
  13. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

    23,972
    1
    0
    You might be spending a bit more than you really need too brother. Buying a YHM lower for $280 lowers is a LOT of money, even if it is from Yankee Hill.

    I would recommend perhaps doing a bit of shopping before you hit enter on that "order" request.

    YHM is a great company, but you don't need a YHM Lower and Upper receiver to get a well built weapon. If you are going that far, you might as well buy a full YHM weapon and be the envy of the range in your area. :D

    JD
     
  14. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    What would you recommend for lowers? The cheapest I have been able to find is $120 for the stripped lower and $55 for the lower parts kit. That is from Del-Ton, but it also says there is a 12-16 week wait for their parts.

    I dont want to put any cheap parts on, I want everything durable and will last a long time. The problem is, I dont know what companies make good reliable parts and what makes cheap ones. This is why I need you guys. What parts should I get from YHM and what are OK to get from cheaper places?
     
  15. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    I picked up a CMMG stripped lower from a local gun shop today, their last one until their shipment in 6 weeks. I stopped in several stores and none of them would order the part for me, and the last gun shop in town had one in stock.

    Now for the next step. I am ready to order rest of the parts for the lower receiver. I picked out this complete lower parts kit, this buttstock assembly, and this upgraded pistol grip.

    Is there anything I am missing to build the complete lower? Also, is there a list anywhere that lists all the parts for the upper that I need to get?
     
  16. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

    23,972
    1
    0
    No, you did good FTA. You have all the parts you need to make a complete lower, and probably a pretty good one at that.

    One thing I would recommend is planning on hitting the hardware store to get a replacement hex bolt/ torx botl and lock nut for your pistol grip. They come with a straight slot scrwedriver slot which is a complete bee-yotch to get in place. A hex or torx is MUCH easier to install and keep tight.

    Brownells has a complete shopping list for both the upper and lower. Or you can ask the guys here. Or you can just hit Del-Ton ( I see you already know the way there :D ) and use there "Build an Upper" ordering screen and compare the parts to a list you make for yourself.

    JD
     
  17. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    I have one more question for now (hopefully). What tools will I need to put everything together? I see a lot of different tools for sale (and will add up in cost real fast), but which ones are really needed and which ones are more of a convenience tool?

    Thanks a ton for all of your help.
     
  18. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

    23,972
    1
    0
    For the lower? Or for the whole gun?

    For the lower, you need a screwdriver ( for the pistol grip ) and you need the ability to put a pin in a hole and make sure it's centered. You need a "pinning" device if you are super serious about your build, but that can come later.

    You can assemble an entire lower without much more than a screwdriver, and a rubber mallet, or a rubber handle on your screwdriver if you are desperate, and some know-how.

    JD
     
  19. FightinTexasAggie

    FightinTexasAggie New Member

    48
    0
    0
    I have been piecing this together the last few days, and here is what I have come up with, along with a couple questions. The checklist you suggested from Brownells has been a great help.

    CMMG Stripped Lower Receiver (bottom of page)
    CMMG Stripped A3 Receiver (1/3 down on page)
    Del-Ton Complete Lower Parts Kit
    M4 CAR Buttstock Assembly
    SPR Pistol Grip
    Ejection Port Cover Assembly

    Now for the questions.

    I was looking at this Charging Handle that says complete, but my checklist lists several other parts (latch, spring, spring pin) that arent mentioned in the complete charging handle kit.

    Next, what is the difference between the round forward assist assembly and the tear drop assembly? I was looking at this Round Forward Assist Assembly, but again, there are several parts on my checklist that are not listed as included with this kit.

    What tools will I need to complete this gun? The lower sounds simple enough, but what will I need for the rest of the gun?

    That is all I have pieced together so far, I am still working through my checklist to make sure I get everything I need.

    Thanks again for all the help.
     
  20. Lonewolf4803

    Lonewolf4803 New Member

    4
    0
    0
    One thing you may consider is rather than worrying with the stripped lower receiver and then the forward assist and ejection port cover you could spend the $20 and buy it direct from CMMG its right above the stripped one referenced in your list. Also I noticed you are missing a barrel that would be a very helpful thing to have on the rifle. as far as tools go Bushmaster sells an Armorer's wrench that will deal with most components that need tools for less than $25 or if you know someone a one of your local gunshops sometimes they will help you out. Another option is rather than buying the upper pieces since you have the one picked out you want just buy it. Right now they are all a little hard to come by Good Luck