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haplo
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Posted: 2/23/2011 8:33:02 PM
So, I'm considering doing my first 308 build. I'm kinda stuck on parts compatibility though... As an aside, is it really much cheaper to build your own 308 based AR? I know a significant savings can be had by building your own AR-15 (as I've done in the past), but the 308 based ARs don't have a parts commonality amongst them, so I'm wondering if its even worth trying to do, or if I should just order one pre-built.

From the reading I've done here, as well as other places, it would appear that A LOT of parts are not interchangeable amongst the different manufacturers.

I'm not stuck to a particular brand of lower, however, I would prefer to use the SR-25 mags.

When looking at upper pieces, it starts to get a little overwhelming. My main reason for wanting to do a custom 308 is that I'd like to get a decent barrel. Looking at DPMS's product lines, none of the barrels are chrome lined. They have 1 stainless barrel in 18". I'd prefer at least 20", and that's not something in their catalog.

Switching to Fulton or American Spirit Arms, they have longer barrels, but they're stainless and shiny. The LaRue OBR and POF rifles are a nice matte color (not shiny), high quality barrel, but overall the system is more than my budget will allow.

So, any suggestions? Should I just suck it up and save for an OBR (or something comparable). Is a chrome lined barrel not all that important? Should I look at building my own, or just buy an off the shelf? Should I just get an M1A?

Thanks,
H.

tallamong
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Posted: 2/23/2011 9:25:20 PM
The big bonus in building your rifle from parts is that you can get it the way you want it the first time. Just assemble the parts and you have exactly what you wanted.
Cheaper? Not once you have all the little do-dads that you want. But if you are patient you can get off-the-shelf parts for a discount and save as I did. I built a mostly DPMS rifle. I mix of A2 style and AP4.

The big problem is BACK orders. Everything you want is on back order so act accordingly. I think DPMS rifles are 6 monthes. Custom uppers were the same "at least".

Have fun. Research is a must!!! Lots and take notes.
safdtrev
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Posted: 2/23/2011 11:57:38 PM
Read,read and then read some more. I just built a Mega MA-TEN and could not be happier. The major thing is that some/most .308 AR parts are not compatible, but building gives you choices/ configurations that are not available. I went with a Armalite BCG and Rainier Ultra Match barrel, but you can use DPMS and the same barrel, the barrel has a different extension on it for the DPMS BCG. You have to decide on what upper/lower you want to use then go from there. Again do lots of research and ask questions. This place has a wealth of info. If I can help IM me and I will try to point you in the right direction.
Tankdawg0057
Danny
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Posted: 2/24/2011 12:15:29 PM
[Last Edit: 2/24/2011 12:15:58 PM by Tankdawg0057]
For 300 more than the ma-ten stripped upper and lower with no parts you can get a bushmaster orc complete gun and build up from there. Food for thought, sell off the take off parts and build it the way you want it with a working starter gun. Check out "Sportsmans Warehouse"
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dangerdan
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Posted: 2/24/2011 5:14:09 PM
[Last Edit: 2/24/2011 5:14:35 PM by dangerdan]
I built mine on a POF lower and SI Defense upper. This was done right before Mega announced their MA-TEN...
Though I do like the POF lower. I like the ambi bolt release. I'm not too fond of SI Defense's upper. The specs were REALLY tight on the charging handle and on the top rail. I had to lap the charging handle in order for it to slide freely. The top rail is slightly oversized and I cannot use QD/throw lever mounts (I can, but its very tight).



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west2746
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Posted: 2/24/2011 7:22:49 PM
Maybe you should post what you plan to do with it also? I started looking at building Vs. buying factory 308 rifles at least two years ago. I wanted a DPMS SASS rifle or something like it. It was much cheaper to buy the SASS then to build almost the same rifle myself. After pricing Vs. building I quicky decided 308 rifles are not "cheaper" to build. If you are one that wants the rifle to be what you want and plan to change a lot of parts then building is a better way to go but its not cheaper. I bought the SASS but a year later, I now have a Mega set and will be building a rifle myself this summer.

If you are a guy that wants to change stocks, triggers, forends, grips then build your own. A good choice to look at like somebody else said is the Bushmaster 308 ORC but only the 16" model is chrome lined, same as the LMT. How important is a chrome lining to you? I do not know how many companys make a 20" chrome line barrel but I see Armalite does make a 20". Maybe get the Mega set and build your own using an Armalite barrel so you can still use the SR25 pattern mags. By the way I do not think the LaRue rifle is chrome lined. Are you sure you need a 20" chrome line barrel?
haplo
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Posted: 2/24/2011 9:26:41 PM
Originally Posted By west2746:
Maybe you should post what you plan to do with it also? I started looking at building Vs. buying factory 308 rifles at least two years ago. I wanted a DPMS SASS rifle or something like it. It was much cheaper to buy the SASS then to build almost the same rifle myself. After pricing Vs. building I quicky decided 308 rifles are not "cheaper" to build. If you are one that wants the rifle to be what you want and plan to change a lot of parts then building is a better way to go but its not cheaper. I bought the SASS but a year later, I now have a Mega set and will be building a rifle myself this summer.

If you are a guy that wants to change stocks, triggers, forends, grips then build your own. A good choice to look at like somebody else said is the Bushmaster 308 ORC but only the 16" model is chrome lined, same as the LMT. How important is a chrome lining to you? I do not know how many companys make a 20" chrome line barrel but I see Armalite does make a 20". Maybe get the Mega set and build your own using an Armalite barrel so you can still use the SR25 pattern mags. By the way I do not think the LaRue rifle is chrome lined. Are you sure you need a 20" chrome line barrel?


I'm really not too sure how important the chrome lining is, so I was really looking for some feedback from people. I know its supposed to make cleaning easier, and possibly you can expose the rifle to the elements more before you start having problems, but that's only stuff I've read; I don't have any first hand knowledge of that. I'm anal about taking care of the rifles I have, so I don't have any experience with a neglected chrome lined barrel vs a neglected non-chrome lined barrel.

I've debated just buying a DPMS, and at some point in the future swapping parts. However, over the years of having AR15s, I've gotten rather picky. Every 308 cal AR that I've looked at from companies like DPMS, Aramlite, American Spirit Arms, Fulton-Armory, etc that are under 2K in price aren't quite what I want. There's a handguard option I don't want, a barrel setup I don't want, trigger I don't want, etc. Just a few things on each that aren't options or upgrades offered by those companies that turns me away...

It is a different ball game though - building an AR-15 is cheap compared to the 308, and that makes me want to make sure its really what I want before I spend the cash.
west2746
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Posted: 2/25/2011 1:24:03 AM
My opinion ..but trust me there are people that have a lot more knowledge then me...you could prob do without a chrome lined barrel.

Based upon what you had in your last post it sounds like you would be better served building your own from the ground up. It will cost you more but you will get what you want.