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I'd say yes to building it if you guys are gonna take on the build yourselves. It's always better to build, so you know your rifle inside and out. But if your friend is just going to have someone build it for him, what the hell is the point.

Youre asking about cost? I'll say collecting the upper parts will be more expensive in the long run for two reasons. 1) people get impatient and don't take the time to shop for the best deals and B) If all the parts are ordered online, expect to pay another 50-100 more in shipping all those separate parts compared to buying a complete. If one takes their time, gets the good deals, a straight collect/build can end up a wash vs. a complete upper. Maybe cheaper. It has been done. Then again, the quality and brands of the parts come into play as well. It's not a honda civic, it's an AR. There's about 10 times as many parts vendors.

homework, homework ,homework

best of luck, I expect pics! :p
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