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Posted: 10/18/2003 6:48:04 PM EDT
I'm a newbie in the whole AR-15 M-16 area,and was thinking about getting one, or building one.From what Ive seen, it would cost about the same to build my own as it would to buy one alredy built. This is puting it together with Bushmaster parts by the way. Am I looking at the wrong price list or is that about right? And do you guys think it would be worth building my own, keeping in mind that I have never built a rifle from scratch before.
Link Posted: 10/18/2003 7:43:29 PM EDT
Using the instructions in the following link, I put my 1st build together in about 45 minutes (and that was while watching my 2 year old daughter and her wanting to "help"). You will save a little money (that could be used for optics, ammo, mags, etc) by building it yourself, and you'll obtain the knowledge of how the AR15 works. You'll find a wealth of knowledge here in the BIY forum and if you run into any problems, all you have to do is ask the question and someone will have the answer. Good luck!!! [url]http://www.ar15.com/content/docs/assembly/lower/[/url]
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 3:35:47 AM EDT
I called Bushmaster recently and asked the salesperson the same question. His reply was that building a Bushmaster doesn't save any money over buying one.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 3:58:39 AM EDT
By building your own you won't save all that much money. The thing is that you gain the experience and knowledge on how it is put together and get the personal satisifaction on doing it yourself. Its also fun. I assembled an M4 the first time from a stripped lower and stripped upper. The other advantage is that you can gather parts a little at a time when the cash is there and not have to have it in one big chunck. The link that dsr611 gave is a must if you build one. It will help alot on the lower. Also you should have a Tech manuel. Check out this link [url]http://www.ar15.com/content/books/[/url] and scroll down to Downloads and get the[b] "TM 9-1005-319-23 (2.6MB PDF) Unit And Direct Support Maintenance Manual M16A2, M4, M4A1"[/b]. It has lots of good info in it. I have it in a book that I bought but its the same one.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:00:02 AM EDT
Do the math, lower $100, kit from J&T $450. What Bushmaster can you get for $550? I am not knocking BM cause I have a couple and love them both. I guess what I am saying is, build your first one and learn from it or spend 200/300 more and get you a BM all ready to go.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 5:01:21 AM EDT
The only thing building has over buying is , ya can get exactly what ya want out of the rifle. My Franken-AR has: Bushy Superlight barrel DPM lo-pro upper OLY lower ACe stock I luv the bushmaster barrels but wanted the smooth sided upper in flat top, so i pieced mine together. BUT..when ya buy a complete rifle from good company, ya get a warranty but essentially your paying for it.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 5:42:55 AM EDT
R14, If it is the same price, go ahead and build it. You will be pleased withthe results. I am also new to the AR scene. Recently built one from a RRA lower. Keep reading this site and use the lower assembly site. It took me less than an hour to put a lower togther with no prior experience. Now I know how my gun works and how to assemble and disassemble it. You will save money on a build over a purchase. Good luck
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 6:09:32 AM EDT
It is all in what you want, just as there is no perfect gun there is no perfect answer. If you are somewhat mechanically inclined and want to build one then yes it is more than worth it, but if you look at it like a chore then no it isn't. It is cheaper to build one, albeit some people think you get lower grade parts and they might be right, but you would then get just what you want, and be able to buy it in payments so to speak rather than one lump sum, if money is an issue. With the price difference, try pricing what you want as a whole rifle and see if there is one that suits all you want, and then price building it yourself and see which one is cheaper and more viable for you. In short, there is no perfect answer, just the best one for you and your best choice.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 6:26:33 AM EDT
Building does not save you a whole lot of money, but it does give you an understanding of how the gun goes together. You also get some personal satisfaction and the ability to have exactly what you want - upper receiver, barrel, etc.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 7:02:48 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/19/2003 7:03:23 AM EDT by celticfozzie]
It is cheaper to build it. I am building a RRA 16" carbine w/ all RRA parts, when it is done I will have $675 in to it. RRA wants $800, thats a $125 differance. And the $675 included the FFL fee. I am just picking up parts for it when I can thats the great thing about it.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 7:16:16 AM EDT
Originally Posted By R14: And do you guys think it would be worth building my own...
View Quote
It was the getting exactly what you wanted that prompted me to BIY...I wanted a M655 (16" BBL & short handguards w/full length stock) but at that time, no one sold a complete rifle...So I built one... Don't compromise. If you don't see exactly what you want, then build it...
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 7:49:22 AM EDT
Yes!
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 8:27:49 AM EDT
You can build one cheaper and still have great quality. Just don't buy the cheapest parts you can find and expect to have a match rifle at the end. Buy good parts--you'll never be sorry. If you're looking at RRA, you can buy their parts and a separate lower, and have a good gun. You can also build a good gun, at least as good as RRA, by buying a complete J&T kit and an Eagle or RRA lower. I think that will be my next project. Bushmaster parts are too expensive (overpriced in my opinion) to save any money by building rather than buying a factory rifle.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 10:31:53 AM EDT
I just recently decided to build two ARs. It was slightly less expensive to build my own, even with the cost of tools included. I'm a tool whore and bought more than I needed. However, the satisfaction I had building two rifles exceeded the cost saved. It was a ton of fun and I can't think o buying another complete AR.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 10:58:57 AM EDT
WOW! Thanks for the info guys. I didnt expect so many replies in 1 day. I think Im goin to build my own, Ill be sure and let you know how it goes. Thanks again for all the info!
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 11:53:10 AM EDT
most of these have already been stated: a) you can have exactly the rifle you want... b) you will end up spending less than a fully assembled rifle, though not a huge ammount... c) you dont need to have a wad of cash all at once because you can pick up parts as you go... d) you will understand how the rifle goes together, how it works, and have a better understanding of how to fix it if it malfunctions... e) you can take pride in the fact that YOU built it... f) since you were the one who built it, you have the opportunity to check each and every part over before assembly to ensure that there are no defects... plus, this way you know exactly what parts went into the rifle, and you know it was assembled correctly (if you followed the instructions)... g) you can always ask for help here if you run into any snags... ive been all over the net and i can honestly say the this is one of the best communities i belong too... everyone wants to help, because we were all in your shoes at one time... h) you can assemble most of the rifle without any specialized tools (except for one of those monster barrel/car stock wrenches)... if you do buy specific tools (roll pin punches, the combination wrench, torque wrench, vice blocks, headspacing gauges, etc), the best part is once you have em, you can build any number of ARs!!! which is a good thing, because believe me, once you build one, its all over for you... this isnt a hobby, its like some kind of disease!!! its too late for the rest of us, but you can still SAVE YOURSELF NOW BEFORE ITS TOO LATE!!!!
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 2:44:23 PM EDT
I saved a lot of money by building mine myself. If you don't buy all at once and look for bargains you can save a ton of money. I bought everything separate including the upper parts and slapped them together myself. You can probably save about $100 right there. And by building one yourself, you actually understand how your rifle functions and can break it down top to bottom and troubleshoot any problems. Not to mention you can upgrade it and change the configuration if you feel like it, because you know what you are doing. I know a guy that has a Bushmaster and did not even know that you can break it down by popping out the pins!
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 3:32:06 PM EDT
Building your own really impresses the ladies!
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:14:22 PM EDT
i got exactly what i wanted when i built mine. i enjoy shooting it more than my other rifles. i wish it would have taken longer to build. i enjoyed it while it lasted.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:18:37 PM EDT
anything that impresses the ladies is well worth it!
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:33:47 PM EDT
I got another question for you guys. Im prety sure that the lower reciever is the part with the serial number and such on it, but not 100%.This means I cant order a 100% complete lower revciever unless its through an FFL correct? Or is it the upper reciever, or both? This is realy the only part I dont understand about the parts I need to get.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:43:45 PM EDT
The lower has the serial number...you'll have to get that through your FFL. --Otter
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:45:44 PM EDT
as mentioned.. building your own, you get exactly what you want. other things that go along with building your rifle.. - you know how it went together. thus you are able to repair, replace and/or modify w/o too much hassle. - you'll be able to spot things in other builds (good and/or bad) - you'll have the satisfaction of having done it yourself! bulding your rifle may or maynot be a cost effective option.. consider the price of tooling!!!!! IF I had the money, I'd could build these things all day long, I figure it'd take a week or two to have one of every option [:D]
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 4:51:01 PM EDT
Thanks for all your help guys. As I sais before, Im going to build my own and Ill be letting you guys know how it goes. Thanks again.
Link Posted: 10/19/2003 11:23:56 PM EDT
most people suggest leaving the barrel installing on ak47 to the "qualified" gunsmith. is this the same case for ar15? i really want to buy one. i have both gun now, but i want to build one using average receiver with m4 stype stock and 24 inches match bushy barrel. i have short arms, which make shooting with the regular stock not cool. the m4 stock fit me better when i adjust it to be a little longer than the what average people have.
Link Posted: 10/20/2003 5:44:54 AM EDT
Nope...all you need is the barrel wrench, a torque wrench and a upper vise block. Its all in the tech manual listed in a previous post. Takes about 10 minutes including 8 minute coffee break.
Link Posted: 10/21/2003 5:11:43 AM EDT
i built my first AR on an eagle arms lower and a RRA mid length A4 upper with an ACE stock, ARMS #40 BUIS, a G2 surefire light and mount. it all cost me less than $800, and i did it in "installments". you can not do that with a pre-built. plus i get to tell people " i build it." that always impresses people at the range.
Link Posted: 10/21/2003 10:45:01 AM EDT
everyone wants to help, because we were all in your shoes at one time... Poor guy probaly needs new shoes aswell [:D]
Link Posted: 10/21/2003 5:51:25 PM EDT
It is easier for me to buy stuff one peice at a time or in groups instead of buying a complete gun. For example, I am getting a 9mm setup. I can spend 400 this month on the upper, and then wait a couple weeks spend $150 on the mag block, then wait a month and spend $300 on the lower. If I try to save up the $800 to do it all at once, I end up spending it on something else.... like BRAND NEW POLISH AK STOCK SETS.. Man I bought 6 sets of those... what was I thinking..... that was my lower and mag block....
Link Posted: 10/21/2003 11:20:19 PM EDT
Yes, it is.
Link Posted: 10/22/2003 6:51:25 AM EDT
hey drugR, where ya getting your 9mm parts?
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 5:12:45 AM EDT
I'll just reiterate what several others have said, since I completed my first build: BIY gives you two distinct advantages- It lets you build an inexpensive, but not CHEAP, AR. Around $500 for a kit plus lower. It allows you own a complete AR in the configuration you want, without you having to fork over extra dough.
Link Posted: 10/24/2003 9:25:35 AM EDT
I found a gun store deal on Oly lowers for $85 each. First kit was a Model 1 w/24" barrel and mini Y comp muzzle brake (because it looks cool!) for $415 or so at a gun show. Brand new rifle for $500 less sales tax. Next kit was a Model 1 flat top upper with 24" barrel and mini Y comp brake for $420. Then I added a like new carry handle for $75 from the Equipment Exchange. I still have another stripped lower to convert when my youngest son turns 16 next year. I don't know where I could have acquired two new rifles for such a low price compared to fully assembled. Building your own is definitely the way to go. Just think how many trigger pulls I can buy with the difference!
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