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Posted: 12/28/2023 11:49:32 AM EDT
Hello All,

Its been many years since Ive done a build and since I moved 15min from PSA, and with everything else going on, I figured it would be a good time to build another and keep it this time.

I picked up a PSA Lower and PSA Magpul MOE Lower Lower Parts Kit.

I have a BCM BCG on the way and am considering this upper:

https://palmettostatearmory.com/psa-14-7-mid-lenght-premium-5-56-nato-1-7-13-5-m-lok-pinned-welded.html

Things I like:
- Total Length at 16" with Pinned/Welded Muzzle Device.
- FN Barrel
- Price

Things I don't like:
- Stuck with a basic A2 Style muzzle device.

Not huge concerns:
- Not being able to remove the gas block

Can you treat this upper as if it were a standard 16" barrel, as far as accessories?

Standard Buffer setup work with a shorter 14.7" barrel?

Any other notable suggestions in this price range or concerns on this particular upper?

I was also considering this charging handle, thoughts?
https://www.primaryarms.com/breek-arms-warhammer-ar15-ambidextrous-charging-handle-flag?avad=194130_d35fbfde9&utm_source=affiliate-referral&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=155690&utm_content=product-review&page=2

Thanks!

Link Posted: 12/28/2023 11:53:50 AM EDT
[#1]
Do you have a suppressor? What other ARs do you have? I don’t think there’s a huge reason for a 14.5 if going unsuppressed, for the reasons you listed.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 11:55:03 AM EDT
[#2]
This will be a great upper. The FN barrels are solid and good shooters. Dont worry about the gas block. you will likely not need to mess with it. The muzzle device can still be switched out. Any competent smith can do it for you for a reasonable fee. I would shoot it like it is first though and only after you put some rounds through it change it. You probably dont think so, but that muzzle device is not as bad as most people think.

Overall, if you got this upper, I think you would have a solid rifle that would be accurate and reliable. Certainly SHTF worthy.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:05:14 PM EDT
[#3]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
Do you have a suppressor? What other ARs do you have? I don’t think there’s a huge reason for a 14.5 if going unsuppressed, for the reasons you listed.
View Quote


No AR's currently, just handguns. No Suppressors.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:05:44 PM EDT
[#4]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
This will be a great upper. The FN barrels are solid and good shooters. Dont worry about the gas block. you will likely not need to mess with it. The muzzle device can still be switched out. Any competent smith can do it for you for a reasonable fee. I would shoot it like it is first though and only after you put some rounds through it change it. You probably dont think so, but that muzzle device is not as bad as most people think.

Overall, if you got this upper, I think you would have a solid rifle that would be accurate and reliable. Certainly SHTF worthy.
View Quote


Thank you, that was helpful.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:09:00 PM EDT
[#5]
A2 Flash Hider is fine until you get a suppressor. It does a decent job as a brake and a flash hider hybrid.

If you need things change ged out look up John Thomas @ Retro Arms
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:13:10 PM EDT
[#6]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
This will be a great upper. The FN barrels are solid and good shooters. Dont worry about the gas block. you will likely not need to mess with it. The muzzle device can still be switched out. Any competent smith can do it for you for a reasonable fee. I would shoot it like it is first though and only after you put some rounds through it change it. You probably dont think so, but that muzzle device is not as bad as most people think.

Overall, if you got this upper, I think you would have a solid rifle that would be accurate and reliable. Certainly SHTF worthy.
View Quote


Agree with all this 100%.

OP I have one of the PSA 14.7's and it's my primary AR, I did swap out the muzzle device, but truthfully it didn't need it and the new one doesn't really do a better job. It's a great barrel, surprisingly accurate too. Balance of the whole rifle is superb, just something magical about permed 14.5-7's with midlength gas, smooth shooting for sure.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:18:51 PM EDT
[#7]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Agree with all this 100%.

OP I have one of the PSA 14.7's and it's my primary AR, I did swap out the muzzle device, but truthfully it didn't need it and the new one doesn't really do a better job. It's a great barrel, surprisingly accurate too. Balance of the whole rifle is superb, just something magical about permed 14.5-7's with midlength gas, smooth shooting for sure.
View Quote


Thank you. Are you using a standard buffer setup? I am not too concerned with swapping out the muzzle device, however it is nice to know its something that a gunsmith can take care of if I choose to down the road. Whats a ballpark cost for something like that?
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:24:30 PM EDT
[#8]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Thank you. Are you using a standard buffer setup? I am not too concerned with swapping out the muzzle device, however it is nice to know its something that a gunsmith can take care of if I choose to down the road. Whats a ballpark cost for something like that?
View Quote


Using a standard weight buffer, but it is a Spike's T1, powdered tungsten powder, I like it, again very smooth shooting, I use it with a Damage Ind. enhanced spring which was a great cheap upgrade. You can catch them on sale now and then for like 5 bucks. But stock stuff absolutely works fine.

Gunsmith only charged me 10 bucks to do mine, great guy, I would expect it normally to be around 20 bucks.

Totally sold on the FN CHF barrels, have them in all my AR's now.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:32:26 PM EDT
[#9]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Using a standard weight buffer, but it is a Spike's T1, powdered tungsten powder, I like it, again very smooth shooting, I use it with a Damage Ind. enhanced spring which was a great cheap upgrade. You can catch them on sale now and then for like 5 bucks. But stock stuff absolutely works fine.

Gunsmith only charged me 10 bucks to do mine, great guy, I would expect it normally to be around 20 bucks.

Totally sold on the FN CHF barrels, have them in all my AR's now.
View Quote


I have no issues upgrading something if it will have a benefit. I did consider the BCM Buffer setups. And $10 is crazy, I was expecting $100 all day. Does this upper normally sit at $400ish? I did just buy a decent amount of ammo online so I wanted to wait a bit if possible before jumping on it.

Is this the buffer?
https://www.wingtactical.com/firearm-parts/ar-15/buffer-buffer-tubes/spikes-tactical-tungsten-buffer/

What my OCD cant stand is the buffer rattle, just handling the lower.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 12:44:59 PM EDT
[#10]
Stuck with a basic A2 Style muzzle device.
View Quote


Probably the best flash hider there is.  No need for a brake on a 5.56

Link Posted: 12/28/2023 2:23:03 PM EDT
[#12]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Probably the best flash hider there is.  No need for a brake on a 5.56

View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
Stuck with a basic A2 Style muzzle device.


Probably the best flash hider there is.  No need for a brake on a 5.56



Absolute truth.  Leave it.

Good upper there.  You might find it runs even smoother with an H2.  Personally, I H2 all the things.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 2:40:54 PM EDT
[#13]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Absolute truth.  Leave it.

Good upper there.  You might find it runs even smoother with an H2.  Personally, I H2 all the things.
View Quote


And here I assumed that's where the upper would get the most criticism. Helps keep the price reasonable as well. I will 99% leave it stock and put the saved money into a better optic.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 4:16:25 PM EDT
[#14]
I have that upper.  It's on my last build.  I've only put a couple mags through it but they were uneventful.  I think the mid-length gas system is a little bit softer shooting than my carbine length ARs.
No irons on it, no light or sling yet.  It's got a PA SLX 3x prism scope on it with the ACSS reticle.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 4:40:22 PM EDT
[#15]
I dont think at this point I need to endorse that upper. It's been pretty well covered. That charging handle (while I've never used one), seems to have some really big handles on it. For a similar price point I'd look at the mid size Vltor. I've have 4 of them. They're a great charging handle and less likely to snag on things or poke you when your rifle is slung.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 5:23:09 PM EDT
[#16]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
I dont think at this point I need to endorse that upper. It's been pretty well covered. That charging handle (while I've never used one), seems to have some really big handles on it. For a similar price point I'd look at the mid size Vltor. I've have 4 of them. They're a great charging handle and less likely to snag on things or poke you when your rifle is slung.
View Quote

Those Vltor look nice, remind me of the BCM one I had. I have also had the Radian Raptor, which both were damn nice, just not sure they are worth the extra $$. Vltor priced reasonably it seams.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 6:46:31 PM EDT
[#17]
The Vltor IS the old BCM one. Vltor used to make them for BCM. Now they split and Vltor still makes them under their own name.
Edit: apparently they've gone up to $65 now. Not as great a deal as I remembered them being, but still a great charging handle and cheaper than a lot of them.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 7:18:22 PM EDT
[#18]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


I have no issues upgrading something if it will have a benefit. I did consider the BCM Buffer setups. And $10 is crazy, I was expecting $100 all day. Does this upper normally sit at $400ish? I did just buy a decent amount of ammo online so I wanted to wait a bit if possible before jumping on it.

Is this the buffer?
https://www.wingtactical.com/firearm-parts/ar-15/buffer-buffer-tubes/spikes-tactical-tungsten-buffer/

What my OCD cant stand is the buffer rattle, just handling the lower.
View Quote


That's the one, ZERO rattle, it's awesome, and the Damage spring eliminates the annoying sproing sound you get with stock springs too.

That's not a bad price for that upper especially with the rail, I got mine a little cheaper with standard A2 FSB/gas block a few years ago when prices really bottomed out, but FN CHF barrels just by themselves are usually around 300 bucks to purchase. That's going to be a nice rifle man.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 8:36:58 PM EDT
[#19]
Not saying anything bad about the spike's buffers, but I didn't like the feel. There are a lot of people that do. I'm just not one of them. It just changes the recoil to more of a deadblow hammer feel. The recoil is still there, but it felt like a more solid (not harder) recoil. I pulled it and put it in one I was building my kid. Again, it's all subjective, but it didn't work for me.
Link Posted: 12/28/2023 11:33:18 PM EDT
[#20]
I have that upper, on a PSA stealth lower. I put in a Geissele 42 H2 buffer and spring, and a LaRue 2-stage trigger; and it's quickly become my favorite gun. Light, handy, very accurate. That upper is a damned steal at the clearance price.

Used the PSA premium bolt carrier - the milspec one, and put on a SOPMOD stock. At the holiday sale prices the build - or any one you're going to do - will be at roughly 45-50% full retail for a middle-high end gun.


BTW, I think the PSA stealth lowers with SCB prefix serial numbers are FN-made.
Link Posted: 12/29/2023 1:50:22 PM EDT
[#21]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


That's the one, ZERO rattle, it's awesome, and the Damage spring eliminates the annoying sproing sound you get with stock springs too.

That's not a bad price for that upper especially with the rail, I got mine a little cheaper with standard A2 FSB/gas block a few years ago when prices really bottomed out, but FN CHF barrels just by themselves are usually around 300 bucks to purchase. That's going to be a nice rifle man.
View Quote


Which do you use?
Link Posted: 12/29/2023 1:52:38 PM EDT
[#22]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


That's the one, ZERO rattle, it's awesome, and the Damage spring eliminates the annoying sproing sound you get with stock springs too.

That's not a bad price for that upper especially with the rail, I got mine a little cheaper with standard A2 FSB/gas block a few years ago when prices really bottomed out, but FN CHF barrels just by themselves are usually around 300 bucks to purchase. That's going to be a nice rifle man.
View Quote


I have the spring on order. After googling them I remember using them on my previous builds years ago - and they were legit. I am still trying to decide 100% on the buffer.
Link Posted: 12/29/2023 6:46:48 PM EDT
[#23]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


I have the spring on order. After googling them I remember using them on my previous builds years ago - and they were legit. I am still trying to decide 100% on the buffer.
View Quote


SHOOT IT!!!  Then decide if it needs to be tweaked.  I never understood changing out working parts on a gun before even shooting it to see if it runs.  
Link Posted: 12/29/2023 7:28:37 PM EDT
[#24]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


SHOOT IT!!!  Then decide if it needs to be tweaked.  I never understood changing out working parts on a gun before even shooting it to see if it runs.  
View Quote


Just because it’s something small, inexpensive and what I’ve ran in the past. Plus the handling noise is annoying. OCD. At the same time I 100% agree ??
Link Posted: 12/29/2023 7:57:33 PM EDT
[#25]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Which do you use?
View Quote


I use the T1's on my 14.7 and 16 inch rifles (midlength gas), and T2's on the pistols (carbine gas).
Link Posted: 12/29/2023 8:56:44 PM EDT
[#26]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Just because it’s something small, inexpensive and what I’ve ran in the past. Plus the handling noise is annoying. OCD. At the same time I 100% agree ??
View Quote



All good.  But, let's say you change out 3 or 4 elements and then the gun won't run.  Where do you go from there?  You can wind up chasing your tail trying to find the solution to a problem that never was
Link Posted: 12/30/2023 7:08:10 AM EDT
[#27]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


That's the one, ZERO rattle, it's awesome, and the Damage spring eliminates the annoying sproing sound you get with stock springs too.
View Quote



This 100%...Damage springs are cheap if you get them on sale too, just be sure to use a couple drops of oil on them as they are not stainless and can rust if left wet or in high humidity for long periods.

I live is the swampy south and have zero issues with them when lightly oiled.
Link Posted: 12/30/2023 12:27:43 PM EDT
[#28]
I don’t know that charging handle but highly recommend the Geissele airborne charging handle. Lower profile, works well, bought it off the shelf at my local PSA ??

I had a medium sized latch from BCM and it dug into my chest as soon as I started carrying it. Was painful without a PC, and hung up on all my gear when I wore one. It wasn’t as useful as I expected either - the airborne one is the better choice. But if you’re saving money, ye olde trusty A2 charging handle has worked for decades and is still a good choice.
Link Posted: 12/30/2023 12:40:01 PM EDT
[#29]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
I don’t know that charging handle but highly recommend the Geissele airborne charging handle. Lower profile, works well, bought it off the shelf at my local PSA ??

I had a medium sized latch from BCM and it dug into my chest as soon as I started carrying it. Was painful without a PC, and hung up on all my gear when I wore one. It wasn’t as useful as I expected either - the airborne one is the better choice. But if you’re saving money, ye olde trusty A2 charging handle has worked for decades and is still a good choice.
View Quote


I appreciate the information. I wasn’t so sure about the changing handle either, just randomly came across it and saw a bunch of good reviews and the price caught my eye.

I will check out the Airborne, I definitely like being able to check something out in person at PSA so that’s a plus.
Link Posted: 1/9/2024 11:53:22 AM EDT
[#30]
Welp, so the PSA Upper I received was in less than ideal shape. I was originally going to do an exchange for one that doesn't look like its been dragged behind a truck down a gravel rd, however they are out of stock.

So, I returned it, the BCM BCG and got this upper on the way with a free BCG

https://bravocompanyusa.com/bcm-standard-14-5-mid-length-upper-receiver-group-w-mcmr-13-handguard/
Link Posted: 1/26/2024 7:56:36 PM EDT
[#31]
Well she turned out to be a bit more than a "Budget" build, but I couldn't be happier. Thanks again for all the suggestions and help.


https://i.postimg.cc/wxX9MGbt/IMG-9962.jpg
Link Posted: 1/26/2024 8:28:41 PM EDT
[#32]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
Well she turned out to be a bit more than a "Budget" build, but I couldn't be happier. Thanks again for all the suggestions and help.


https://i.postimg.cc/wxX9MGbt/IMG-9962.jpg
View Quote


They have a tendency to do that.
And - I have that same lower

Edit: Now pull out some more dollars and get a nice trigger.
Link Posted: 1/26/2024 8:57:57 PM EDT
[#33]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


They have a tendency to do that.
And - I have that same lower

Edit: Now pull out some more dollars and get a nice trigger.
View Quote


Y’all a bad influence around here ??
Link Posted: 1/26/2024 10:23:06 PM EDT
[#34]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


Y’all a bad influence around here ??
View Quote


If you like having money, don't come here
Link Posted: 2/1/2024 9:44:39 PM EDT
[#35]
For a "budget SHTF upper" the very last thing I'd want is a pinned & welded muzzle device. Why limit yourself? What if you want to install a different handguard for instance. What if you want to replace the muzzle device? What if you want to use a suppressor? There's more reasons to NOT have a pinned & welded muzzle device than there is to have one. Pinning & welding is just arbitrary nonsense that came from the AFT.
Link Posted: 2/6/2024 10:07:08 AM EDT
[#36]
I have a 14.7 Barrel that I purchased from CMMG years ago. It seems to be a High Quality Barrel. It is Chrome Lined and looks to have a Mil Standard Phosphate Finish. Unknown who made the barrel for them at that time.
 
I recently have been updating my AR Family. I decided to change out the Colt M4 Handguards for a modern Free Floating M-Loc Handguard.
This was a slight challenge due to the Pinned and Welded A2 Flash Hider.  I originally had a Two Piece Gas Fixture with a 1913 rail section on the top. This monstrosity had to go.  

I ended up using a Yankee Hill Hinged Gas Fixture. It is a low enough profile to fit under the Handguard.
For a Handguard I went with a 12" Stern Defense Straight Slot (SD HG12 MOD 4 MLOK).
The added Handguard length over the Colt M4 should help keep my fingers off the Gas Fixture. I have gotten my fingers on a Hot Gas Fixture in a Two Gun Match a time or two over the years.

If I were to have a Do-Over on this purchase, I would have went with a 16" Barrel. The Pinned and Welded Flash Hider is not nearly as handy as being able to just unscrew it to change Gas Fixtures.

Just My Two Cents

Bob R
Link Posted: 2/6/2024 9:58:22 PM EDT
[#37]
Couldn't be happier with my 14.5 BCM Upper. Taking her back out this weekend. Found a local "AR Pit"
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