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Posted: 9/28/2003 3:29:12 AM EDT
Hi, I'm brand spanking new to the forum, and my use of the search engine is not up to speed yet, so I thought I'd ask about what has doubtless been an ongoing subject. I'm in the process of paying off an AR-15, used, from a local gun shop, and I would like to know a little about it. The problem is that the receiver is stamped only with the letters PAW inside a symmetrical oval, and I couldn't seem to find anything else out. Can anybody tell me about this manufacturer?
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 3:42:51 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/28/2003 3:45:14 AM EDT by Lumpy196]
Its PWA - Pac West Arms. They were a small company that made AR recievers. No longer in business to the best of my knowledge.
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 3:46:53 AM EDT
Many thanks, that's more than I knew. Anybody care to comment on the quality of their manufacturing?
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 5:12:07 AM EDT
Materials were fine; machining and finish were so so. Understand, this reciever was not shipped as a complete rifle. It was bought as a stripped unit, and whoever bought it either built the rifle himself, or had it built. This raises the question of 1)when the rifle was built, and 2)what parts were used to build it. The important thing, if I remember correctly, is that all of them were preban, but you need to be able to establish that it was, in fact, built up into a rifle. If it was built up into a complete piece before the 1994 ban, then it's worth some bucks. The other question, of what parts were used to build it, is also important. If good quality upper, barrel, and internals were used then it'll probably be a good piece. If shlock junk was used----well, need I say more??
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 5:59:56 AM EDT
What recourse do I have to establish its original date of build-up, being that it's used? It's got a nice heavy barrel stamped NATO 1:7, a match free float handguard, and I know nothing more than that so far. I only know how to field dissasemble a Stoner design (thank you, Basic Combat Training), what to your knowledge will I be able to learn about the other components after that (just remember it's sitting in a gun shop awaiting payoff, and they don't like me to go stripping it down, so I'm buying it on the strenght of the almost unfired condition, the heavy barrel, and the cheap ammo.)? How do I tell who made the upper? I think I even remember PWA on the upper, but my memory is fuzzy on that.....
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 6:22:00 AM EDT
Does the barrel have a letter, like C or B anywhere around the other stampings? If so, it's either a Bushmaster or Colt barrel, which should be fine. If someone put the bucks into the front end that you're indicating by the barrel and forend construction, the rest of the pieces should be fine. Re the upper, I don't think PWA ever made anything but the lowers, but I might be wrong. Best if you check it again, and post anything you do find. BTW, is it an A1, Sporter or A2 upper? A1 and Sporters will have only a flip type rear sight. A1 and A2 uppers will have a forward assist, and the A2 will have a fully adjustable rear.
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 9:28:01 AM EDT
PWA never made rifles, only lowers. And they are still available, at least as of two weeks ago. I have heard that their quality is very good. Like someone else said, the quality of your rifle depends mostly upon how well it was built and the quality of the other parts used.
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 1:18:26 PM EDT
Originally Posted By imcoltsguy: PWA never made rifles, only lowers. And they are still available, at least as of two weeks ago. I have heard that their quality is very good. Like someone else said, the quality of your rifle depends mostly upon how well it was built and the quality of the other parts used.
View Quote
Who had the PWA recievers? I'd like to have another one.
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 2:01:31 PM EDT
From the AR15.com serial # FAQ ------------------------------------ PWA (360) 438-3983 35222 and Below - Pre-Ban (Note:Some lowers are cast not forged. Out of business) Post-ban have a year prefix in the serial number. Rumored to have only sold lowers. ----------------------------------- IMHO..... If the receiver was originally sold as a lower only , (and the serial # is in the preban range ), NO ONE can ever legally PROVE OR DISPROVE that it WAS a COMPLETE ASSAULT WEAPON before the ban took effect. What you read into that is your choice [:D]
Link Posted: 9/28/2003 2:33:07 PM EDT
Pac West Arms, aka. PWA made very high quality receivers. I assembled quite a few back in the day. I only wish I'd have kept a couple. Hint to all you guys building Retro M16's(Myself included). Every pre-ban Pac West receiver I ever had, or have seen were made from an M16A1 forging, I.E. no A2 reinforcements. So, these are perfect for building that retro rifle as authentic as posible. Plus, if you can find one, you get to have all your "evil features". Never seen a post-ban receiver made by Pac West but I'd like to see one and see if it has the A2 reinforcements or not. I would guess they probably do, as most manufactures get their forgings from the same couple of places. If so, then this might be another way to identify their pre-ban production from their post-ban production. Anyone out there have one they'd like to check out and let us know. WpnsMan
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