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Posted: 10/25/2010 11:03:35 PM EDT
So, I decided to build my first AR, but I know absolutely nothing about them. I have been reading this site and browsing some vendor sites and have been gathering as much info as I can in a short period of time.

This build will be mostly for killing paper at the range, but you never know, I might try some tactical type courses in the future.

What size barrel do you guys recommend? I am leaning towards a 14.5, would that be the best compromise for accuracy while staying compact? How much more accuracy do you gain by going to a 16" barrel?

So, for this build, I'd like to get the basic rifle (without optics, FF handrail, low pro gas tube, bipod, ect) for around $800-$850.

I have so far came up with the following parts list to get started:

Core 15 Complete Upper - $425 http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=3&f=12&t=514214&page=1
Spikes Lower - $80 http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?item=F1STSL&groupid=214
Any LPK - `$55
Magpul ACS Stock - $130
Magpul MBUS Flip Up Rear Site - $60
MagPul AR-15 MIAD Grip - $40
Bullet Button - $20

Total = $810

I'd later slowly mod it with a FF handrail, low pro gas block, Magpul Flip up front site, virtical grip, optics, ect)

What do you guys think?

Thanks in advance!


Link Posted: 10/25/2010 11:05:50 PM EDT
buffer tube?
Link Posted: 10/25/2010 11:32:56 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Choncer:
buffer tube?


Suggestion for a low price one?
Link Posted: 10/25/2010 11:55:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/26/2010 12:06:55 AM EDT by RH33]
Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
Originally Posted By Choncer:
buffer tube?


Suggestion for a low price one?


Might as well stay with AIM.  But IMHO with an $800-$850 price range and being your first AR, I would just go with a factory built from Spike's Tactical.  Lifetime warranty, 0 tools needed, a few little extras and very easy to "upgrade" later.

-Ray

ETA: A longer barrel length will give you higher muzzle (bullet) velocity not greater accuracy.  Not a major difference between 14.5" and 16".    

Link Posted: 10/26/2010 12:05:34 AM EDT
Originally Posted By RH33:
Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
Originally Posted By Choncer:
buffer tube?


Suggestion for a low price one?


Might as well stay with AIM.  But IMHO with an $800-$850 price range and being your first AR, I would just go with a factory built from Spike's Tactical.  Lifetime warranty, 0 tools needed, a few little extras and very easy to "upgrade" later.

-Ray



That is an option, but I figure with a custom build I get the exact parts I want and also, part of the fun is building it myself i would think :)
Link Posted: 10/26/2010 12:12:22 AM EDT
Might need to order buffer retaining pin and spring, those are not always in lpk
Link Posted: 10/26/2010 2:21:04 AM EDT
for what you are wanting I to suggest going with the spikes tactical rifle.  Build for fun on your second rifle.
Link Posted: 10/26/2010 3:08:56 AM EDT
Originally Posted By RH33:
Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
Originally Posted By Choncer:
buffer tube?


Suggestion for a low price one?


But IMHO with an $800-$850 price range and being your first AR, I would just go with a factory built from Spike's Tactical.  Lifetime warranty, 0 tools needed, a few little extras and very easy to "upgrade" later.

-Ray

ETA: A longer barrel length will give you higher muzzle (bullet) velocity not greater accuracy.  Not a major difference between 14.5" and 16".    



This.

Link Posted: 10/26/2010 3:32:39 AM EDT
If your not a member ........

ask here too.

http://www.calguns.net
Link Posted: 10/26/2010 5:32:24 AM EDT



Originally Posted By mspiredm3:



Originally Posted By Choncer:

buffer tube?




Suggestion for a low price one?


Here is your ACS with buffer kit.





Link Posted: 10/27/2010 12:29:30 PM EDT
Originally Posted By DirectAction:
Congrats....and welcome to the club!

Looks like you are well on your way and with the suggestions already given - on the right path....

Best of luck!


Thanks! I'm sure the mod bug will hit me and I will end up modding AR's as much as I mod cars

Originally Posted By uxo2:
If your not a member ........

ask here too.

http://www.calguns.net


Thanks man, just joined there as well.

Originally Posted By TylerC:

Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
Originally Posted By Choncer:
buffer tube?


Suggestion for a low price one?

Here is your ACS with buffer kit.



Thanks!

Link Posted: 10/27/2010 12:32:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/27/2010 12:33:44 PM EDT by mspiredm3]
I appreciate the suggestions for the Spikes full rifle, but I think I'm going to stick to a custom build, even if it's not the "best" way to go right now.

Are any of the parts I have chosen a weak link? Something better for in the same price range?

I think the main thing I need help with is an upper choice. What is the best complete 14.5" upper in the $400-$500 range?
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 2:01:18 PM EDT
Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
I appreciate the suggestions for the Spikes full rifle, but I think I'm going to stick to a custom build, even if it's not the "best" way to go right now.

Are any of the parts I have chosen a weak link? Something better for in the same price range?

I think the main thing I need help with is an upper choice. What is the best complete 14.5" upper in the $400-$500 range?


For your upper you could go with the DD offer from smartgunner for like $525 but you would still need a BCG and CH.  Damn good price for what you would be getting.
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 2:44:42 PM EDT
I say go for it man!  Sounds a lot like my plan for my second black rifle.  A lot of guys will say to get a complete rifle and there is some merit to it but if you want to build it yourself I say go for it!
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 3:09:51 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/27/2010 3:11:07 PM EDT by tstanfield12]
Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
I appreciate the suggestions for the Spikes full rifle, but I think I'm going to stick to a custom build, even if it's not the "best" way to go right now.

Are any of the parts I have chosen a weak link? Something better for in the same price range?

I think the main thing I need help with is an upper choice. What is the best complete 14.5" upper in the $400-$500 range?


This BCM comes out to $565 w/ BCG and CH.
http://www.bravocompanyusa.com/BCM-Standard-14-5-M4-SOCOM-Upper-Receiver-p/bcm-urg-m4-14socom.htm

Just throw in a set of MOE handguards, a MBUS rear sight and a Daniel Defense LPK when you order the ACS from DSG Arms, then add to lower of your choice and you should be GTG.  Price should come out to around $875 or so.  

You could also go with a CTR or MOE stock and save a few bucks that way.  You could even pick up the MOE kit from DSG which would bring your total to around $800.

Either way you can't go wrong dealing with these two companies.  Also don't forget DSG has a coupon code in their industry forum.

ETA:  Didn't add in the bullet button but still pretty much within your budget.
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 3:24:21 PM EDT
If you go with a 14.5" barrel the flash hider is probably going to be pinned and welded. That will be a problem if you decide to change out the hand guard to a free float system in the future.
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 7:53:14 PM EDT
Originally Posted By mvacdp:
If you go with a 14.5" barrel the flash hider is probably going to be pinned and welded. That will be a problem if you decide to change out the hand guard to a free float system in the future.


Can you elaborate please?
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 9:55:28 PM EDT
Originally Posted By mspiredm3:
Originally Posted By mvacdp:
If you go with a 14.5" barrel the flash hider is probably going to be pinned and welded. That will be a problem if you decide to change out the hand guard to a free float system in the future.


Can you elaborate please?


To change out drop in handguards that utilize the D-ring you typically have to remove the FH and front sight which you can't do with a pinned FH unless you break the weld.  

However there are many railed handguards that are drop in or you could just buy a complete upper that is pinned with the handguards you want already installed.

In case its unclear for a 14.5" barrel you have permanately pin the FH in order for it to be legal lenght without being an SBR.  I'm sure someone will explain this one more in detail if I missed anything.
Link Posted: 10/27/2010 10:23:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/27/2010 10:24:12 PM EDT by rick458]
If you are buying the lower from Spike's you should get the spikes enhanced LPK. why start off with a sucky trigger.
Also I would go with a Troy Rear sight.
And try to find as many good parts in one place as possible, shipping $$ add up quick if you use different vendors, enough for some decent upgrades over time.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 12:58:22 PM EDT
dont you have to have a 16" barrel in Cali?
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