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sr975j
03-05-2012, 03:10
so i am wanting to build my first AR and i dont even know where to start. i have pretty basic parameters so far. i am on a budget build and would like to keep things as inexpensive as possible and by inexpensive, i mean i would like to keep the final price below $750 built. i dont need the best of the best, but i dont want some cheap junk that will cause me more frustration than enjoyment either.

like i said, i would like to build it myself but i just need some pointers from the "experts" :supergrin: here on GT. what are some good companies to use for stripped lowers, parts kits, and uppers? keep in mind my budget build.

also, im going to be completely honest here. i know very little about AR's and have only shot one maybe 3-4 times. here is what i have in a cart from PSA. http://palmettostatearmory.com/index.php/checkout/cart/
am i heading in the right direction as far as parts go? do i have everything there that i would need to complete the build?

one more thing, i am holding off on an optic for now. i will just be using the basic sights until my budget gets a little higher.

Thanks in advance.

Sam

ericridebike
03-05-2012, 04:22
Your link didn't show any items in the cart for me. You should be good to go though with PSA stuff, as they have a good reputation for quality & decent prices. Another you might consider is Del-Ton, Inc. I have a build I did with their stuff and its performed flawlessly. S&W's M&P 15 Sport seems to get a lot of good reviews for quality & low price too.

TangoFoxtrot
03-05-2012, 04:54
Sam, Considering your budget and experience, O would have to say you can save yourself tons of time, energy and aggravation and just go buy an economy AR. The S&W M&P Sport fits your needs. Its a basic Ar you can expand on . Do some reseach on this rifle.

Glock 1
03-05-2012, 09:31
^+1. I recently bought my first. It was going to be an M&P until I found a great deal on a Colt.

JaPes
03-05-2012, 09:47
You should not have any problem keeping a build within your budget.

Purchase a stripped lower, then buy a PSA rifle kit. Assembling a lower & mating it to a complete upper is easy-peasy.

davsco
03-05-2012, 10:03
suggest you just buy a pre-built AR for your first one. building really isn't much if any cheaper than buying a completed one. just hit local gun stores and gun shows and gun ranges and play with them and discuss with your buddies what they like and don't and take that into account.

skip hitting restaurants and bars for a month or two or work a little overtime. in the low $1000 range you should be able to find some pretty decent guns. look at armalite, they have a bunch of stuff in the 1000-1500 range.

nice thing about AR's is they are totally customizeable, so once you have a basic AR you can change literally everything as your wallet allows it.

arclight610
03-05-2012, 10:04
You should not have any problem keeping a build within your budget.

Purchase a stripped lower, then buy a PSA rifle kit. Assembling a lower & mating it to a complete upper is easy-peasy.

^ Yup. All you need to assembly a lower in a razor blade and youtube.

sr975j
03-05-2012, 12:07
the M&P15 is definitely a possibility but this will be my only AR for a while and i would like to the get "built, not bought" satisfaction for my first one.

Sam

WayaX
03-05-2012, 12:17
If you have no experience with an AR-15, do not build it yourself the first time. You won't really save any money, and you risk screwing it up.

For ~$200 more, you could have a much better rifle, as well. It's worth it to save up and get a Colt/BCM/LMT/Noveske/DD and skip the lower quality stuff.

If you must make use cheaper parts, buy an upper minus the bolt group from PSA, put a BCM bolt carrier group in it. Buy a PSA lower, and put a BCM or DD parts kit in it. Finish it off with a basic stock kit from BCM.

That would be the only way I would settle on to make a decent rifle. Skip all the companies that claim to be in the "as good as" a known quality manufacturer (DPMS, BM, Del-ton, etc).

svtpwnz
03-05-2012, 13:44
I am looking to put together a BCM blem lower, BCM middy upper with CL BCM barrel, BCM Gunfighter CH and BCM BCG for a grand total of $850 plus shipping and a $15 transfer fee. I already have a stock and handguard from upgrading my other rifle. Save up a little more for a better rifle, just my .02

country85
03-06-2012, 14:27
True you might be able to find a ready to go rifle a little cheaper than you can build one, but you won't have the satisfaction of doing it your self. Now if that's not a big deal to you then by all means go for it. Personally I started with a palmetto state lower and parts kit, super simple to build. People will tell you that you will need a vise and a mag block to put it together. They're wrong, I put mine together in about 45 min in my living room with a jewelers hammer, didn't put one scratch on the lower and the hardest part was the front take down pin detent. Model one has some fairly good uppers, but if you want to go with really good quality I'd go with a complete kit from palmetto state, the most important thing to remember is to build a rifle that you will be happy with and is set up just the way you like.

sr975j
03-06-2012, 14:37
i forgot to mention, i am a lefty and it would be cool to have a lefty AR. How do you guys feel about Stag Arms for a lefty?

Sam

WoodenPlank
03-06-2012, 14:43
i forgot to mention, i am a lefty and it would be cool to have a lefty AR. How do you guys feel about Stag Arms for a lefty?

Sam

Upper, bolt and bolt carrier are all proprietary, so swapping parts with a friend is a no-go. I have plenty of left-handed friends that shoot ARs no problem, and don't need left handed uppers to do it.

BBJones
03-06-2012, 15:36
Upper, bolt and bolt carrier are all proprietary, so swapping parts with a friend is a no-go. I have plenty of left-handed friends that shoot ARs no problem, and don't need left handed uppers to do it.


+1

I shoot primarily lefty. No need to get a lefty AR.

chr_edw
03-06-2012, 18:25
I shoot long guns left handed so I had the same thoughts when I started my build. I am just doing a regular right handed gun ad will add an ambi safety. Should be good.

Cole125
03-06-2012, 19:14
You should not have any problem keeping a build within your budget.

Purchase a stripped lower, then buy a PSA rifle kit. Assembling a lower & mating it to a complete upper is easy-peasy.

+1 You cannot go wrong with buying a stripped lower and a PSA rifle kit. Building a stripped lower is easy, and a lot of fun.

As said above the M&P sport is a good rifle at a good price, but if it were my money I would go the PSA build rout no question.

Good luck.

sr975j
03-07-2012, 00:52
after doing more research over the last few days, ive almost decided on saying screw it and getting the 6920. to hell with the budget. i can afford a 6920, why skimp on an AR right? you only live once. i should be picking one up over the next few weeks.

Sam

akgunnut
03-07-2012, 03:32
You'll be happy with the Colt 6920!

WoodenPlank
03-07-2012, 05:45
after doing more research over the last few days, ive almost decided on saying screw it and getting the 6920. to hell with the budget. i can afford a 6920, why skimp on an AR right? you only live once. i should be picking one up over the next few weeks.

Sam

While you can do better than a Colt, getting a 6920 for under $1000 is a good deal, and worth it. For the $1100 or higher most places are asking, I'd rather buy a DD(edit: although their MSRP has gone up recently..) or BCM.

chr_edw
03-07-2012, 09:31
Check your local Wall-mart for the 6920 others have said they saw it for $1097 but I could have sworn it was like $ 958 here.

sr975j
03-07-2012, 10:58
unfortunately, no walmarts near me carry guns and the one that does (45 mins away) only stocks a m&p15-22. i am going to my LGS here in a little bit to see what their prices are. I spoke to a guy the other day who got a Rock River Arms there for a little over 800 out the door. how does the RRA stand against the Colt for 2-300 less?

Sam

svtpwnz
03-07-2012, 12:57
unfortunately, no walmarts near me carry guns and the one that does (45 mins away) only stocks a m&p15-22. i am going to my LGS here in a little bit to see what their prices are. I spoke to a guy the other day who got a Rock River Arms there for a little over 800 out the door. how does the RRA stand against the Colt for 2-300 less?

Sam

I would stick with the colt. Grant at G&R sells the 6920's for just under a grand.

sr975j
03-07-2012, 22:18
Well I went up my LGS and they are unable to get a 6920. All of their sources are out of stock also. But they do have a Stag 2t for 750 which meets my original budget. Are Stags decent quality?

Sam

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WoodenPlank
03-07-2012, 22:24
Well I went up my LGS and they are unable to get a 6920. All of their sources are out of stock also. But they do have a Stag 2t for 750 which meets my original budget. Are Stags decent quality?

Sam

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There are a lot of ARs I would buy for that price before a Stag. Plenty of people here have liked theirs, but you can do better for the money. Or just save your pennies, and keep your eyes open for a good price on a Colt, DD, BCM, etc...

sr975j
03-07-2012, 22:33
There are a lot of ARs I would buy for that price before a Stag. Plenty of people here have liked theirs, but you can do better for the money. Or just save your pennies, and keep your eyes open for a good price on a Colt, DD, BCM, etc...

What brand is better than Stag for that price assembled and ready to go?

Sam

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Hour13
03-07-2012, 22:44
Well I went up my LGS and they are unable to get a 6920. All of their sources are out of stock also. But they do have a Stag 2t for 750 which meets my original budget. Are Stags decent quality?

Sam

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Stag makes some good stuff, I've got one of their uppers on my bench right now, along with a couple BCMs. I personally PREFER the BCM gear, but the Stag is hard to beat for a quality sub-$1,000 build.

Also putting my vote in for the S&W Sport. $600 brand new, and dollar for dollar, has NO rivals in quality. Regardless of what you start with, you'll ending changing most of it over time anyhow. Great platform to start from.

WoodenPlank
03-07-2012, 22:50
What brand is better than Stag for that price assembled and ready to go?

Sam

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PSA is the first place I would look. Lower (http://palmettostatearmory.com/index.php/firearms/receivers/complete-psa-ar-15-lower-classic-edition.html), upper (http://palmettostatearmory.com/index.php/ar-15-05/complete-uppers/psa-16-mid-length-chrome-lined-upper.html) both fully assembled. Including a standard charging handle, handguards, and FDE MBUS rear sight, pre-shipping comes out to 727.

If you shop around a bit, or wait until PSA has a sale, you can shave some more off the total.

Jack Black
03-07-2012, 23:04
While I prefer other brands, 750 is a good price for a Stag 2T. Are you sure it's a 2T, the model with the railed handguard?

sr975j
03-08-2012, 00:07
While I prefer other brands, 750 is a good price for a Stag 2T. Are you sure it's a 2T, the model with the railed handguard?

yes, it is a 2T.

Sam

sr975j
03-08-2012, 00:10
PSA is the first place I would look. Lower (http://palmettostatearmory.com/index.php/firearms/receivers/complete-psa-ar-15-lower-classic-edition.html), upper (http://palmettostatearmory.com/index.php/ar-15-05/complete-uppers/psa-16-mid-length-chrome-lined-upper.html) both fully assembled. Including a standard charging handle, handguards, and FDE MBUS rear sight, pre-shipping comes out to 727.

If you shop around a bit, or wait until PSA has a sale, you can shave some more off the total.

do you think PSA is better quality than Stag? I know i can get a PSA for a little cheaper but after shipping and FFL transfer fees, it will be more than the Stag in the store. If PSA really is higher quality, i will go that route.

Sam

WoodenPlank
03-08-2012, 00:23
do you think PSA is better quality than Stag? I know i can get a PSA for a little cheaper but after shipping and FFL transfer fees, it will be more than the Stag in the store. If PSA really is higher quality, i will go that route.

Sam

I haven't personally owned a Stag, but from the ones I have handled, I wasn't impressed. If you shop around, you can catch deals on other stuff, too - heck, if you try, you could probably get a BCM upper for not much more than the PSA one.

sr975j
03-08-2012, 14:18
Well I just went to another lgs. They claim bushmaster is just a good if not better than colt and that bushmasters hold their value better than colt. They also claim that $999 is cheap for a base bushmaster with a carry handle....well, I won't be going back there. Oh yea, they also won't do ffl transfers.

Sam

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WoodenPlank
03-08-2012, 14:55
Well I just went to another lgs. They claim bushmaster is just a good if not better than colt and that bushmasters hold their value better than colt. They also claim that $999 is cheap for a base bushmaster with a carry handle....well, I won't be going back there. Oh yea, they also won't do ffl transfers.

Sam

Outdoor Hub mobile, the outdoor information engine

Yeah, I'd never set foot in there again.

Veedubklown
03-08-2012, 16:10
I have a newb question, and I don't want to start my own thread, so maybe someone can help here;

Plum crazy is in the next town over. I'd love to drive over and pick up a lower, or rifle :dunno: You guys all speak so passionately about polymer lowers, why? Guys in my club who have em, say they're great. What gives? Naturally I trust the guys I shoot with more than the internet, but what's something I should be aware of, or look out for?

mingaa
03-08-2012, 16:17
Also putting my vote in for the S&W Sport. $600 brand new, and dollar for dollar, has NO rivals in quality. Regardless of what you start with, you'll ending changing most of it over time anyhow. Great platform to start from.

can you show the dealer with that price?? I may cry. The S&W was my first choice on a budget. As I saved I watched the prices creep up and up and they were frequently still out of stock.

M&P Shooter
03-08-2012, 17:22
do you think PSA is better quality than Stag?

Sam
My one AR is a Stag lower with a PSA LPK with a BCM upper and I built her under $900 with all OD Magpul furniture, even added a set of JP anti walk pins and a Tapco single point sling adapter. Stag & PSA are identical IMO as far as quality of parts from what I seen. I built a rifle for someone before using a Stag LPK and couldn't tell the difference from all the PSA kits I used. Actually the PSA kits come with a nice coating of oil on all the parts and some nice free PSA & Magpul stickers, Stag comes dry and no freebies for more money:dunno:

WoodenPlank
03-08-2012, 21:00
I have a newb question, and I don't want to start my own thread, so maybe someone can help here;

Plum crazy is in the next town over. I'd love to drive over and pick up a lower, or rifle :dunno: You guys all speak so passionately about polymer lowers, why? Guys in my club who have em, say they're great. What gives? Naturally I trust the guys I shoot with more than the internet, but what's something I should be aware of, or look out for?

Things like this...

http://i55.tinypic.com/16956xj.jpg

http://i55.tinypic.com/2u89fh2.jpg

http://i53.tinypic.com/14nir2x.jpg

The original design was for aluminum, so stick with aluminum.

Hour13
03-08-2012, 23:08
can you show the dealer with that price?? I may cry. The S&W was my first choice on a budget. As I saved I watched the prices creep up and up and they were frequently still out of stock.

Well, I'm a long way from St Luis my friend, lol. But online they go for $600-$630, and many offer free shipping, so you're just left with the transfer fee.

As for what's in stock, you'll probably need to start an account with a good site, and get "on the list". Word has been spreading about these little wonder-guns, pretty much everybody is cleaned out right now. That's the case for alot of gear right now, with elections coming up, everything AR has been flying off the shelves.

I'm sitting on a pile of built uppers, waiting on my batch of DI lowers to be finished, lol. Name of the game man, sometimes you just have to be patient.

Got an offer I couldn't refuse, and sold my Sport thinking "Hell, I'll just build another just like it..." And I would, if I could get one right now.
:faint:

Hour13
03-08-2012, 23:12
http://i53.tinypic.com/14nir2x.jpg

The original design was for aluminum, so stick with aluminum.

+10,000

Wouldn't build a PlumCrappy if it was given to me for free. I'd trade it... for a pack of smokes... or a stick of gum...

hkcavalier
03-09-2012, 01:21
I just did a build for $900 that could have been done for less than $700 without all my extras.

Surplus Arms and Ammo complete lower no stock
Model 1 20" fluted stainless 1:8 A3 upper, 5.56mm chamber
Cavalry Arms A1 stock, FDE
MIAD grip, FDE
MOE handguard, FDE
Troy ambi charging handle (I shoot lefty)
RRA chrome lined BCG
Magpul MBUS rear, FDE

Delete the aftermarket handguards, grip, and charging handle, and get a regular upper vs. a fluted stainless and you could hit $700 easy.