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Posted: 6/14/2009 3:44:38 AM EST
I have searched and read most of the BIY posts, but I have not found the answer to my most fundamental question: Where do I go to purchase a kit, and what parts and pieces require shipment to a FFL holder? Once I get the parts I am sure that I can build an AR-15, but it's the starting point that has me a but confused.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:51:10 AM EST
I'd start with Del-Ton.

Only the lower receiver goes thru a FFL - everything else is just 'parts'.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 4:43:49 AM EST
If you order a kit, like from Delton or Model1 they ship the kit (everything minus the lower receiver) right to your door. Like the above poster said, the only thing that needs to go to your FFL is the lower receiver.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 8:04:12 AM EST
+1 The lower receiver is the only part that would go to your FFL dealer where you will do the transfer paperwork.

You could either buy or order your stripped lower receiver from your FFL dealer, or have your dealer FAX or send a copy of his FFL license to the dealer you are buying your stripped lower.

There are a lot of AR15.com dealers that sells stripped lowers here at the Equipment Exchange (EE) section, like Rainier Arms, Denny's Guns-GTS, ADCO Firearms, etc., take a look at the Industry section for other dealers and their site links.

Of the four AR builds that I completed, I bought one from my local gun dealer and three from the dealers here at AR15.com.


Link Posted: 6/14/2009 8:08:57 AM EST
See if there are lowers locally, to make the transfer easiest. Gander Mountain here last weekend had S&W lower for $183 which is fairly normal right now.

When it comes to buying everything else, look for the online vendors who are up-front with what they have ON HAND. Del-ton and RRA and others could take your order and you sit and wait for a year for them to catch up. Some will take your money before telling you they don't really have those parts in stock. Just 'available.' coughRRAcough (And yes, it is taking your money even if they don't charge your card til they ship, as they will hit you for a percentage if you change or cancel your order. Good thing for them, they're so busy they don't need any more of my money.) /rant

M&A Parts was stellar for me through the panic and shows only parts they have in stock. PKfirearms (button at top of page) has the same policy. This will save you from waiting 3 months then coming back here to post an 'I've waited 10 weeks past what they said - what is their current wait time??' post. There are others... my point is read the policy on their site. And look through the 'Industry' area here. And while you wait for your parts, read everything else. It's wicked fun to build 'em.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 8:30:41 AM EST

Originally Posted By NirgalW:
...Gander Mountain here last weekend had S&W lower for $183 which is fairly normal right now...

No, it's not. That's about $60 too high. Just look around for about an hour and you can easily find lowers for much, much less. Here's a Stag stripped lower in stock right now for $99.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 8:53:05 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/14/2009 8:53:37 AM EST by scromer]
Aim Surplus has stripped lowers and has 10% off sale through Fathers Day.


http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=2&f=217&t=175819
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 8:58:00 AM EST
Get the lower of your choice at a local retailer for a reasonable price then order the rest of the kit from Del-Ton and start waiting. If that is your plan I'd get your order in to Del-Ton as soon as possible so you're on the waiting list.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 8:59:24 AM EST
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By NirgalW:
...Gander Mountain here last weekend had S&W lower for $183 which is fairly normal right now...

No, it's not. That's about $60 too high. Just look around for about an hour and you can easily find lowers for much, much less. Here's a Stag stripped lower in stock right now for $99.



if it came with STOCK /LPK that seems fair
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 9:03:41 AM EST
Superior Arms stripped lower at AIM for $89.95, not bad.
AIM - SA stripped lower
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 9:47:17 AM EST
Originally Posted By SmokeyJ:
Superior Arms stripped lower at AIM for $89.95, not bad.
AIM - SA stripped lower


Just picked one up last week because of the price just to have it.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:46:52 PM EST

Originally Posted By FMJ:
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By NirgalW:
...Gander Mountain here last weekend had S&W lower for $183 which is fairly normal right now...

No, it's not. That's about $60 too high. Just look around for about an hour and you can easily find lowers for much, much less. Here's a Stag stripped lower in stock right now for $99.



if it came with STOCK /LPK that seems fair

Uhhh....what planet do you come from where stripped lowers plus a stock and/or a LPK go for $99? Because I wanna move there.

$99 is the cheapest I've seen a stripped lower from a well-known manufacturer in about a year.

Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:49:48 PM EST
I recommend J&T kits............... http://jtdistributing.net/store/kits_all.html
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:50:50 PM EST
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By FMJ:
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By NirgalW:
...Gander Mountain here last weekend had S&W lower for $183 which is fairly normal right now...

No, it's not. That's about $60 too high. Just look around for about an hour and you can easily find lowers for much, much less. Here's a Stag stripped lower in stock right now for $99.



if it came with STOCK /LPK that seems fair

Uhhh....what planet do you come from where stripped lowers plus a stock and/or a LPK go for $99? Because I wanna move there.

$99 is the cheapest I've seen a stripped lower from a well-known manufacturer in about a year.



I think he means the $180 for the S&W seems fair.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:56:04 PM EST
Originally Posted By WHITE_WOLFE:
I recommend J&T kits............... http://jtdistributing.net/store/kits_all.html


If its on their site, is it in stock?

Its so hard to tell whats in stock there.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 4:46:57 PM EST
Originally Posted By osprey21:
I'd start with Del-Ton.

Only the lower receiver goes thru a FFL - everything else is just 'parts'.


Stay away from Del-ton if you want it built this year. good stuff horrible wait times.

only part you have to transfer through FFL is the Lower.

The rest can be bought from any of the above industry sponsors.

Good starting point is a lower and a lower parts kit.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 4:38:24 AM EST

Originally Posted By kteaton:
Originally Posted By WHITE_WOLFE:
I recommend J&T kits............... http://jtdistributing.net/store/kits_all.html


If its on their site, is it in stock?

Its so hard to tell whats in stock there.

J&T doesn't sell lowers. They has a separate company named DoubleStar that sells their lowers.

What are you wanting to build? 16", 20". There are some many possibilities.

I recommend you call them to verify if what you want is in stock. 888-736-7725


Carbines are here and once you add to cart you get options to customize. http://jtdistributing.net/store/kits_car.html
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 4:50:26 AM EST
DIY is a fun route to go, It makes the weapon "your own", and it allows you to get an insight to how everything works.

The issue I've seen lately is getting barrels, BCGs, LPKs, and high quality furniture.
Everybody is "out of stock" for anything worth buying.

Go ahead and build it, but be prepared for a wait on your components. Especially if you want the high-end parts.
Some day, I hope to see Noveske N4 uppers showing in stock again, or better yet BCM Mid-length uppers.

The market is getting closer to saturation. Once that happens, you'll be able to get the good stuff for less, and without a 6 month wait.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 5:27:49 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/15/2009 5:28:16 AM EST by USMC-Helo]
Don't forget you will need special tools to assemble the rifle.

At least,
An Armorer's Wrench for the Barrel Nut.
If you get the collapsible stock, you need the special spanner wrench for the castle nut (you can get them both as a combo tool).

Some say you can improvise instead of these tools, but having them will help.
Action block to secure the upper receiver to torque the barrel nut.
Roll Pin Punches (Some of the roll pins are tough to drive in and a good punch will help prevent messing up the pin).

Some of the high end parts may have different barrel nut requiring a different wrench. Many aftermarket parts use allen head screws. You need a very large straight edge screw driver for the screw for the pistol grip.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 5:58:48 AM EST
Check Spikes Tactical. They may have everything in stock right now.

As far as $99.00 lowers or "complete" parts kits, I'd be very careful. There is some junk out there. I understand you may have to do some "home-machining" to get some of these to go together properly. I've recently built a Spikes gun from a stripped lower, LPK, complete M4 stock and Complete upper. It was my first attempt and everything went together FLAWLESSLY!

The other thing to consider (and I may be a minority about this) is if the finish on the upper matches the finish on the lower. Some "Black" gun parts are really kinda' "Gray". I prefer my uppers and lowers to be the same color. Unless, of course, they're mis-matched for some "functionality" reason. (like POF)

My $0.02... FWIW
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 6:38:43 AM EST
Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
The other thing to consider (and I may be a minority about this) is if the finish on the upper matches the finish on the lower. Some "Black" gun parts are really kinda' "Gray". I prefer my uppers and lowers to be the same color. Unless, of course, they're mis-matched for some "functionality" reason. (like POF)

Yea, the finish on the upper/lowers vary greatly, they all look black until you look at them closely side by side and see big difference in the actual shade and texture of black. Texture can be huge, my upper was more dull semi-gloss, while the lower was extreme flat. It can be a very noticeable difference up close. Mix an upper from one company and lower from another (should function just fine) but the finish may be different enough to be very noticeable. Its more annoying than you would think it would be, sure some could care less.

I'm doing duracoat right now, there are other coatings like Cerakote and such that are very tough and durable, will NOT scratch off like paint. Thats an option to consider for mis-matched shade/texture of upper and lower. More work and cost than simple spray can spray paint, but it will last.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 10:18:54 AM EST

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Check Spikes Tactical. They may have everything in stock right now.

As far as $99.00 lowers or "complete" parts kits, I'd be very careful. There is some junk out there. I understand you may have to do some "home-machining" to get some of these to go together properly. I've recently built a Spikes gun from a stripped lower, LPK, complete M4 stock and Complete upper. It was my first attempt and everything went together FLAWLESSLY!

The other thing to consider (and I may be a minority about this) is if the finish on the upper matches the finish on the lower. Some "Black" gun parts are really kinda' "Gray". I prefer my uppers and lowers to be the same color. Unless, of course, they're mis-matched for some "functionality" reason. (like POF)

My $0.02... FWIW

Nope.

The $99 lowers I posted a link to earlier are complete, ready-to-build lowers from a respected manufacturer (Stag Arms.) They are 100% machined, and as such, must go through an FFL. What you're thinking of are known as "80% lowers", which can be shipped directly to your home without going through an FFL, but require machining to complete.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 10:29:47 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/15/2009 10:32:48 AM EST by oneshot_onekill]
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Check Spikes Tactical. They may have everything in stock right now.

As far as $99.00 lowers or "complete" parts kits, I'd be very careful. There is some junk out there. I understand you may have to do some "home-machining" to get some of these to go together properly. I've recently built a Spikes gun from a stripped lower, LPK, complete M4 stock and Complete upper. It was my first attempt and everything went together FLAWLESSLY!

The other thing to consider (and I may be a minority about this) is if the finish on the upper matches the finish on the lower. Some "Black" gun parts are really kinda' "Gray". I prefer my uppers and lowers to be the same color. Unless, of course, they're mis-matched for some "functionality" reason. (like POF)

My $0.02... FWIW

Nope.

The $99 lowers I posted a link to earlier are complete, ready-to-build lowers from a respected manufacturer (Stag Arms.) They are 100% machined, and as such, must go through an FFL. What you're thinking of are known as "80% lowers", which can be shipped directly to your home without going through an FFL, but require machining to complete.

No... That's not what I was thinking of. I didn't even know there was such a thing... And what kind of IDIOT would buy a lower you could never resell because it has no serial number registered with BATF!!!... Is that even legal??? I'd been reading and studying for several months before I took the plunge (mostly on this very site). In fact, I just read a thread TODAY about one of the manufacturers out there... a well known one... having issues with some of their lowers not being to spec. I'm talking about getting what you pay for. I couldn't decide from what I read so I went to Spikes personally because they're local, liked what I heard, liked what I saw... bought 24 lowers. I would make sure whoever you get a $99.00 lower from has a liberal return policy. Or spend a little more.

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 10:37:04 AM EST

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Check Spikes Tactical. They may have everything in stock right now.

As far as $99.00 lowers or "complete" parts kits, I'd be very careful. There is some junk out there. I understand you may have to do some "home-machining" to get some of these to go together properly. I've recently built a Spikes gun from a stripped lower, LPK, complete M4 stock and Complete upper. It was my first attempt and everything went together FLAWLESSLY!

The other thing to consider (and I may be a minority about this) is if the finish on the upper matches the finish on the lower. Some "Black" gun parts are really kinda' "Gray". I prefer my uppers and lowers to be the same color. Unless, of course, they're mis-matched for some "functionality" reason. (like POF)

My $0.02... FWIW

Nope.

The $99 lowers I posted a link to earlier are complete, ready-to-build lowers from a respected manufacturer (Stag Arms.) They are 100% machined, and as such, must go through an FFL. What you're thinking of are known as "80% lowers", which can be shipped directly to your home without going through an FFL, but require machining to complete.

No... That's not what I was thinking of. I didn't even know there was such a thing... And what kind of IDIOT would buy a lower you could never resell because it has no serial number registered with BATF!!!... Is that even legal??? I'd been reading and studying for several months before I took the plunge (mostly on this very site). In fact, I just read a thread TODAY about one of the manufacturers out there... a well known one... having issues with some of their lowers not being to spec. I'm talking about getting what you pay for. I couldn't decide from what I read so I went to Spikes personally because they're local, liked what I heard, liked what I saw... bought 24 lowers. I would make sure whoever you get a $99.00 lower from has a liberal return policy. Or spend a little more.


Some people enjoy machining and the satisfaction of doing things on their own. I don't consider them "IDIOTS". Yes, it's completely legal, and believe it or not, there are some people (like me) who have never and will never resell a firearm.

Now, you've never had an AR and then ran out and bought 24 lowers? That's funny.

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 10:58:04 AM EST
Didn't say I never had an AR... Just that I never built one before. I bought my first AR in 1983 for $399.00. It was a Colt CAR15 SP1 If memory serves. I've owned at least 20 AR's over the years but always had to part with them either to pay the bills or because they were much more valuable when I sold them than what I paid for them. I also don't see what's funny about buying 24 lowers. The guys that bought M2HB serialized side-plates 30 years ago for $75. each have been laughing all the way to the bank lately. The purchase was for investment purposes and at least 20 of them will go in the safe and be forgotten about until such time when they enable me to laugh all the way to the bank.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 11:13:32 AM EST
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Check Spikes Tactical. They may have everything in stock right now.

As far as $99.00 lowers or "complete" parts kits, I'd be very careful. There is some junk out there. I understand you may have to do some "home-machining" to get some of these to go together properly. I've recently built a Spikes gun from a stripped lower, LPK, complete M4 stock and Complete upper. It was my first attempt and everything went together FLAWLESSLY!

The other thing to consider (and I may be a minority about this) is if the finish on the upper matches the finish on the lower. Some "Black" gun parts are really kinda' "Gray". I prefer my uppers and lowers to be the same color. Unless, of course, they're mis-matched for some "functionality" reason. (like POF)

My $0.02... FWIW

Nope.

The $99 lowers I posted a link to earlier are complete, ready-to-build lowers from a respected manufacturer (Stag Arms.) They are 100% machined, and as such, must go through an FFL. What you're thinking of are known as "80% lowers", which can be shipped directly to your home without going through an FFL, but require machining to complete.

No... That's not what I was thinking of. I didn't even know there was such a thing... And what kind of IDIOT would buy a lower you could never resell because it has no serial number registered with BATF!!!... Is that even legal??? I'd been reading and studying for several months before I took the plunge (mostly on this very site). In fact, I just read a thread TODAY about one of the manufacturers out there... a well known one... having issues with some of their lowers not being to spec. I'm talking about getting what you pay for. I couldn't decide from what I read so I went to Spikes personally because they're local, liked what I heard, liked what I saw... bought 24 lowers. I would make sure whoever you get a $99.00 lower from has a liberal return policy. Or spend a little more.


Some people enjoy machining and the satisfaction of doing things on their own. I don't consider them "IDIOTS". Yes, it's completely legal, and believe it or not, there are some people (like me) who have never and will never resell a firearm.

Now, you've never had an AR and then ran out and bought 24 lowers? That's funny.


OK... So let me get this straight... You're telling me that I... not having a manufacturers license... can legally get ahold of an AR15 lower that's 80% finished and has no serial number registered with BATF and make a functioning rifle with it??!!... And all I have to do is never to sell it??? I'm sorry fellas, but THAT should be SOOO ILLEGAL!!!

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 11:37:23 AM EST
Sorry about hijacking your thread... I'll leave it alone.

But do check Spikes Tactical if you're seeing long back-orders.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 11:44:23 AM EST

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:

OK... So let me get this straight... You're telling me that I... not having a manufacturers license... can legally get ahold of an AR15 lower that's 80% finished and has no serial number registered with BATF and make a functioning rifle with it??!!... And all I have to do is never to sell it??? I'm sorry fellas, but THAT should be SOOO ILLEGAL!!!


That's exactly right. You can legally transfer it to your heirs through a will. And why should it be illegal?

Way to stand up for your gun rights.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 12:05:57 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/15/2009 12:08:12 PM EST by oneshot_onekill]
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:

OK... So let me get this straight... You're telling me that I... not having a manufacturers license... can legally get ahold of an AR15 lower that's 80% finished and has no serial number registered with BATF and make a functioning rifle with it??!!... And all I have to do is never to sell it??? I'm sorry fellas, but THAT should be SOOO ILLEGAL!!!


That's exactly right. You can legally transfer it to your heirs through a will. And why should it be illegal?

Way to stand up for your gun rights.

You're not thinking this through are ya...It's got nothing to do with Gun Rights. I believe in our 2nd Amendment right to "have and bear arms" as much as anyone! But building firearms in your "garage" so to speak with no tracking or accountability is STUPID! Let's just give the Liberals more more to cry about! If you can't figure out how this is inherently dangerous for gun rights........ ah, forget it. We've hijacked this poor guy's thread enough! We can only hope there aren't too many of you out there.

Semper-Fi!!! (Formerly MOS:8541... )

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 12:17:41 PM EST
Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:

You're not thinking this through are ya...It's got nothing to do with Gun Rights. I believe in our 2nd Amendment right to "have and bear arms" as much as anyone! But building firearms in your "garage" so to speak with no tracking or accountability is STUPID! Let's just give the Liberals more more to cry about! If you can't figure out how this is inherently dangerous for gun rights........ ah, forget it. We've hijacked this poor guy's thread enough! We can only hope there aren't too many of you out there.

Semper-Fi!!! (Formerly MOS:8541... )



That is exactly how Eugene Stoner & Ron Barrett got started. Without the "garage" gun builder, the AR-15 would have never existed.

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 12:21:52 PM EST
They weren't "building" from 80% complete lowers. There's a difference... But OK, you win. Now let's let this guy have his thread back... Peace.
Link Posted: 6/15/2009 12:48:53 PM EST

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:
Originally Posted By kcr121:

Originally Posted By oneshot_onekill:

OK... So let me get this straight... You're telling me that I... not having a manufacturers license... can legally get ahold of an AR15 lower that's 80% finished and has no serial number registered with BATF and make a functioning rifle with it??!!... And all I have to do is never to sell it??? I'm sorry fellas, but THAT should be SOOO ILLEGAL!!!


That's exactly right. You can legally transfer it to your heirs through a will. And why should it be illegal?

Way to stand up for your gun rights.

You're not thinking this through are ya...It's got nothing to do with Gun Rights. I believe in our 2nd Amendment right to "have and bear arms" as much as anyone! But building firearms in your "garage" so to speak with no tracking or accountability is STUPID! Let's just give the Liberals more more to cry about! If you can't figure out how this is inherently dangerous for gun rights........ ah, forget it. We've hijacked this poor guy's thread enough! We can only hope there aren't too many of you out there.

Semper-Fi!!! (Formerly MOS:8541... )

This is the last thing I'm contributing to this thread because it's now completely off topic, and I'm at least partly responsible for that.

"Tracking"? "Accountability"? What needs to be tracked? Who needs to be accountable other than the owner of the firearm?

Frankly, I think there are far more people in this forum (and the gun world in general) who hope there aren't too many of YOU out there. You're the one hording lower receivers in the hopes of "laughing all the way to the bank" (from one of your previous posts.)

By your logic, it should be illegal to build a hot rod in your garage, because there's no "accountability" or "tracking". You should have to get a government-issued manufacturer's license to build such a vehicle. You could just as easily kill people with your homebuilt vehicle as with any firearm.

Having 80% receivers available and legal has EVERYTHING to do with gun rights. Do you think the average gangbanger on the street buys 80% receivers and the equipment to complete them just so they can have a firearm whose serial number isn't recorded by the BATFE? Let's get real. They're made available to hobbyists and people who enjoy machining (or idiots, as you previously referred to them.)

Here's a great idea - let's rewrite the 2nd Amendment to read like this: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms produced only by manufacturers licensed by and registered with the BATFE, shall not be infringed."

This argument's over.

Link Posted: 6/15/2009 12:59:07 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/15/2009 1:16:32 PM EST by GearHead_1]

Originally Posted By kcr121:

shall not be infringed

THIS!

oneshot_onekill,

I mean no offense in asking this question, you are free to believe what you choose. Being a 2nd Amendment enthusiast, which part of this is it that you don't you understand? In essence you are saying that owning a firearm should be legislated, at least to some degree. The view point you seem to defend in this thread is exactly what the liberals have been wanting the public to believe for decades. We'll "govern" you a little here and then we'll "govern" you a little more there. The 2nd Amendment does not limit me in my choice of personal firearm (of my own making, if I so choose), it was written to protect my right to do exactly this. Do you believe the rifles available at the time the 2nd Amendment was penned all had serial numbers and were made by major manufacturers? At what point did the American public sign off on any limitation to this effect? You've bought in, you just don't realize it.
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