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Posted: 2/8/2006 4:32:17 PM EDT
Hi there-

Im rather new here and just found this new hobby that is the AR... As such the local "shop" guys mentioned that building an AR upper wasnt too difficult, but that you just needed some time, equipment, and the help of the ARF forum :-)

My question is this, If i went and bought a quality upper (quality b/bc/etc)and a quality barrel (16-20 inch for length) - could i build a tack driver???, or is there some other magical know how that Im missing??

Im just curious as to what makes the building of an AR special..

-v
Link Posted: 2/8/2006 4:51:45 PM EDT
It's easier than alot of people make it out to be. Start with a quality barrel.....................................and you're done.
Link Posted: 2/8/2006 4:57:30 PM EDT
+1 Mongo speaks the truth.

If you want a tack driver, you will pay the price of a good barrel. I have three White Oak Armament SPR barrels, and ALL of them are tack drivers. Link to White Oak Armament barrels
Link Posted: 2/8/2006 10:39:40 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 12:02:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By PistolKidd:
Hi there-

Im rather new here and just found this new hobby that is the AR... As such the local "shop" guys mentioned that building an AR upper wasnt too difficult, but that you just needed some time, equipment, and the help of the ARF forum :-)

My question is this, If i went and bought a quality upper (quality b/bc/etc)and a quality barrel (16-20 inch for length) - could i build a tack driver???, or is there some other magical know how that Im missing??

Im just curious as to what makes the building of an AR special..

-v



Not so much "magical know how", there is a wealth of knowledge here on this site. Now, a "magical wallet" would certainly help....

Welcome to the site, good luck with your build, and don't forget to post pics.

Gene
Link Posted: 2/9/2006 3:37:12 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15barrels:
On building an accurate AR, Zediker says it best.

"Float a quality barrel"

I'll add that a good trigger is also required.



That pretty well covers it. Dont cheap out on the barrel or trigger.

Link Posted: 2/9/2006 4:54:33 AM EDT
the barrel is the foundation of an accurate rifle
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 5:28:58 AM EDT
+1 to whatever everyone said so far.

Just a few deffinitions here:
Most people confuse these two
Accuracy=hitting your target every time (what most of us really have)
Precision=hitting your target in relatively the exact same spot every time (what benchresters strive for)

Most people get an accurate rifle, but bitch because they don't have a precise rifle. Most of 'em brag about having a 'one holer at any yardage' though!

Accuracy is easy with the current crop of high quality suppliers, but precision costs money and time. Both are easily achievable with good high quality components and attention to detail building. It's really only limited by your budget and your ability to read the manual and follow proper assembly procedures. Don't forget that you can always upgrade parts at any time, too.

Free float a quality barrel, put in a good, well tuned trigger, and use good optics. From there, find the tightest tuned ammunition for your combination. Realize that some barrels are hummers and some are bummers. After that, it's all you!

Tom
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 9:01:32 AM EDT
Hey-

Thanks for all the advice, tips, and the welcome. :-)

for me, its good to know the cost of getting a completed upper vs buidling one against the added benefits of accuracy/precision. If it's as simple as buying quality components and assembling them to a known specification..then thats defintiley a plus..

ive been browsing the EE section..and honestly, waht makes a LMT upper or a CMT upper better than the next?? If i use a quality stripped upper and a quality barrel.. should i expect the same performance out of the one i built??

Link Posted: 2/10/2006 9:18:21 AM EDT
You're info says you are in Kali.
Just make sure you know the laws there.
No new semi auto AR15s.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 10:16:27 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 11:24:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15barrels:
On building an accurate AR, Zediker says it best.

"Float a quality barrel"

I'll add that a good trigger is also required.



Once its built do not shoot Wolf for groups.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 1:14:59 PM EDT
umm..I would not want to do anything that violated Kalifornistan law...

I've kept my post strictly to barrels and upper receivers..since i've also read that the lower plays an insiginificant role in the accuracy of the AR..

oh, I have a FAB10 to comply with Kali law hanks
my original post was only referring to Upper Receivers anyways.. so long as i dont do anything crazy and keep the lengths at a minimum..i think ill be immune from the wraith of Federal and Local Law Enforcement agencies.. i just wanted to know how feasible it'd be to build something hyper-accurate.
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 3:03:28 PM EDT
Once you have spent money on a good bbl also spend money on a coated cleaning rod, a good bore guide and good jags and brushes. You can destroy a fine bbl with improper cleaning.

rj
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 4:21:36 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 4:34:33 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15barrels:

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:
You're info says you are in Kali.
Just make sure you know the laws there.
No new semi auto AR15s.



This comment brought to you by someone who only saw the posts here with the CA DOJ notice and is not aware of the actual LAWS.
The DOJ notice is NOT consistent with the laws.
You can certainly build a semi-auto AR-15 here in CA.
For the time being, it just has to have a 10 round magazine pinned into place.
Once the AW list is updated and the receiver registered, then the rules change on the 10 round requirement as no other registered AW's are restricted to 10 round magazines.
The DOJ is trying to scare people who don't know the LAWS.
DOJ does not make laws, they are tasked with enforcing laws.



+1 to you Randall
Link Posted: 2/10/2006 10:27:05 PM EDT
My $.02... just buy a complete DPMS stainless match upper in .223 or .308, nothing will beat it, and I mean nothing. I've seen Jim Clark and Jerry Miculek outshoot guys with $4K custom bolt guns with thier STOCK DPMS rifles.

I'll put a DPMS LR .308 against any bolt gun in the world, and have personally shot them out of the box that shot bullets through holes.

Nice optics and a William's set-trigger, and possibly a muzzel break... it's all you need.
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 5:31:26 PM EDT

paraphrased from wes @ MSTN:

accuracy/precision in the AR15 platform break down as follows:

40% barrel blank, the raw piece of rifled steel
40% barrel finisher, who contours, chambers, and crowns the barrel.
10% builder.
10% other (trigger, bolt, carrier, etc).

based on the above, you can see where you should be spending your money, and in what order.

the 10% "other", IMHO, includes (among other things) luck, serendipity, and a few other intangibles. you may get a golden barrel that just shoots well. you man not.

ps:
one reason Les Baer etc complete rifles are very expensive is that you are paying for selection; the vendor can sit down with 50 barreled uppers, shoot them, evaluate the results, and pick the 10 best. they engrave "Les Baer" on those 10 best, and sell them for $3K each. the rest (the fallout) are sold to other vendors or otherwise configured for lesser grade rifles. this selection process nets the best of otherwise "identical" rifles. in effect, instead of you buying 5 barrels and determining which one is best (costing lots of premium ammo and taking a lot of range time), they do it for you and charge you for it. at least, that's the way i see it.

ar-jedi

Link Posted: 2/11/2006 8:42:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ar-jedi:
40% barrel blank, the raw piece of rifled steel
40% barrel finisher, who contours, chambers, and crowns the barrel.
10% builder.
10% other (trigger, bolt, carrier, etc).



Well, I agree (with exceptions) as I have personal friends who own $2500 Les Baers, that wont group tighter than my $900 DPMS.

The trigger was the most important mod to me, I recomend a williams set-trigger.
I tamed my DPMS .308 to .25moa from 1MOA.

DPMS will probably agree with this as well, however good luck getting Randy Luth or Jerry Miculek to tell you exactly HOW they finish thier chambers, etc.

Link Posted: 2/11/2006 8:56:56 PM EDT
Gotta throw my 2 cents in. I built a varmint gun awhile back. It had a good quality 24" bull barrel and a free float. The trigger was stock and the ammo was plinking ammo. I thought this thing should shoot better than it does so I went to a better ammo. and the groupos tightened and I said this thing should shoot better than it does and I put in a 2 stage bushy adjustable trigger and I found nirvana! So, I feel there are four things to start with:
1) good barrel (I'm not convinced the barrel has to be 24", there are some really nice 16" barrels)
2) free float
3) good ammo.
4) good trigger
Link Posted: 2/11/2006 8:59:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By protozo1:
Gotta throw my 2 cents in. I built a varmint gun awhile back. It had a good quality 24" bull barrel and a free float. The trigger was stock and the ammo was plinking ammo. I thought this thing should shoot better than it does so I went to a better ammo. and the groupos tightened and I said this thing should shoot better than it does and I put in a 2 stage bushy adjustable trigger and I found nirvana! So, I feel there are four things to start with:
1) good barrel (I'm not convinced the barrel has to be 24", there are some really nice 16" barrels)
2) free float
3) good ammo.
4) good trigger



You are on the path to enlightenment... God speed young man!
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 10:49:32 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/13/2006 4:35:59 AM EDT

randall,
let me use an example here for you...

suppose i purchase a "match grade" barrel from a reputable vendor, such as your company, and then after mounting it up and so forth i find that i just can't get it down to where i want. in other words, neother massaging the loading nor any other tweaks will get the groups down into the 0.5 or 0.25 MOA range that i expected. for some reason the accuracy is just not there.

what do i do now?

ar-jedi

Link Posted: 2/13/2006 6:11:34 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/13/2006 8:25:37 PM EDT
A few years back I bought a bushmaster DCM rifle that shot really well. With 52gr A-max (or v-max?) I was able to cover a 5 shot open sighted group at 100yds with a dime, well, maybe a nickle... Anyways, that rifle shot great. I did take the time to break it in well and I also was shooting at a 100 yard indoor range, no wind and off a really solid sandbag mount. It outshot most of the bolt guns competing in the same league we had going. It had a good barrel, good trigger, and good ammo (Varget handloads, competition dies). My eyes were better than 20/10 then, so I guess good optics as well. I guess I see the trend here.....

I am building my first ever rifle, this time for 3 gun. I am going with a DPMS DCM barrel, only becuse it seemed like the best deal at the time but I really wanted something lighter. The salesman sold me on it saying it was all they had 1:8 compatible with the MC comp I needed..... but after reading this forum and specifically this thread I am rethinking. I have been waiting 3 + weeks for them to ship it and if they haven't by tomorrow I may cancel and give a call to ARbarrels or white mountain .......

Oh, I guess I had a point also. Working at the range I got to see a-lot of people shoot. I even got paid to sight people's rifles in for hunting season (I personnaly disagreed with that one on moral grounds but did get to shoot a-lot of nice rifles) The number one problem with most accuracy issues was the trigger actuator as time and time again someone would have me look at the rifle or pistol that just wasn't a good shooter and there was really only one part that needed replaced. Not saying that about anyone here, but I always take with a grain of salt anyone who says their rifle or pistol just won't shoot straight or accurate unless I have confirmed the barrel, loads, trigger etc...
Link Posted: 2/13/2006 9:01:00 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 8:10:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mongo001:
It's easier than alot of people make it out to be. Start with a quality barrel.....................................and you're done.



i'd say this is just about sums it up. i'd add a free float to that high quality barrel.

septic tank

Link Posted: 2/14/2006 8:36:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By mongo001:
It's easier than alot of people make it out to be. Start with a quality barrel.....................................and you're done.[;)





CHRIS
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 9:08:33 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/17/2006 9:29:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ar-jedi:
one reason Les Baer etc complete rifles are very expensive is that you are paying for selection; the vendor can sit down with 50 barreled uppers, shoot them, evaluate the results, and pick the 10 best. they engrave "Les Baer" on those 10 best, and sell them for $3K each. the rest (the fallout) are sold to other vendors or otherwise configured for lesser grade rifles. this selection process nets the best of otherwise "identical" rifles. in effect, instead of you buying 5 barrels and determining which one is best (costing lots of premium ammo and taking a lot of range time), they do it for you and charge you for it. at least, that's the way i see it.



DPMS rifles out of the box will out-shoot Les Baers, and they are almost 2/3'rds less expensive.
Another decent shooting alternative is the RRA's you can find out there w/Wilson air-gauged barrels.

I took Jerry Miculek's advice and bought a bone stock DPMS 308, I did nothing but a trigger job, using a low-mass spring kit and she shoots .25moa. My FN Herstal SPRA1, and Savage Tacticle are more finiky w/differnt types of ammo, and they are BOLT GUNS!

I'm no DPMS dealer, however I must simply give credit where credit is due... they are awesome, even in .223. If you want an absolute tac-driving AR, get a panter bull 20, or 24" and a decent scope, bipod, and drop a good trigger in it.
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