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Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       03-14-2011, 3:56 PM Reply   
I've got a AR-15 lower receiver coming and am getting excited about building it up. I know there are a few guys on here that have them. What should I be looking out for? What companies should I check out. It's just going to be a fun/target set-up. I'm thinking a 16" barrel.

I'm going to poke around on, too, but thought I'd see what you guys had to say.

Old     (jarrod)      Join Date: May 2003       03-14-2011, 4:09 PM Reply   
haha...I guess you enjoyed shooting Nates on the camping trip eh?
Old     (sinkoumn)      Join Date: Jan 2007       03-14-2011, 4:11 PM Reply   
Hah, didn't read the full post.

But has everything under the sun and can get you exactly what you need that's for sure.

Last edited by sinkoumn; 03-14-2011 at 4:18 PM.
Old     (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-14-2011, 4:16 PM Reply   
What do you thik its going to cost you to get that fully set up.
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       03-14-2011, 4:34 PM Reply   
From what I've seen it runs anywhere from $500 on top of the receiver to $1500+. Sky's the limit if you want to go crazy with trick parts. I think $700-1k will get you a very nice rifle. Receivers seem to run from $100-$200.

Nate's was awesome. I'll be calling him to see what he's got. It just so happened that a guy I work with is doing a group buy through a broker friend of his. Guys at the shop ordered 12 receivers. Who was I to say no to a good deal on a receiver?
Old     (mikes)      Join Date: Jul 2007       03-14-2011, 6:21 PM Reply   
You should be able to build a very respectable piece for under a grand. Check out Spikes Tactical and Bravo Company Machine. has a ton of useful.....and useless information. At least the General Discussion forum is entertaining if nothing else. You think boat gas is expensive, try Black Rifle Disease.

If your looking for an inexpensive RDS for plinking, check out
They have some entry level optics that are decent and inexpensive compared to Aimpoints etc and their customer service is excellent.

Last edited by mikes; 03-14-2011 at 6:26 PM.
Old     (Walt)      Join Date: Jan 2003       03-14-2011, 6:38 PM Reply
Old     (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-14-2011, 6:52 PM Reply   
I second Walt's link (there's tons of information at Calguns). First and foremost, read, understand and KNOW the laws with regard to AW's (Assualt Weapons). There are a lot of horror stories of overzealous LEO's confiscating AR's. Plus it really hurts the 2A movement when idiots build illegal rifles by simply removing/replacing one part.

I would suggest sticking to the higher end brands as I have shot both and there was a substantial difference in both balance and accuracy. Buy once Cry once. I have had good experience with Bravo Company uppers. Take a trip to a few stores and hold a few to feel the balance differences between free floated and non, carbine vs middy vs rifle. Once you have a good idea of what you like and the trade off's between the gas impingement systems pull the trigger on one that's done. Buying a non free-floated upper and trying to add the free-float portion later ends up costing more.

Other suggestions: Learn to shoot with irons before putting the optics on.

Build the lower yourself...its pretty simplistic if you have any mechanical skills at all.

Buy a LOT of ammo as it's addicting.
Old     (hunter660)      Join Date: Aug 2007       03-14-2011, 7:05 PM Reply   
Know what you want before you start building. Have a plan. You can spend a ton of money on them, it is a very slippery slope.
Old     (snyder)      Join Date: Feb 2006       03-14-2011, 8:07 PM Reply   
anyone have any experience w/CMMG's .22LR conversion kit? I picked one up at a great discount price at a local shop, but haven't had a chance to use it yet. All the reviews I could find were all pretty good. Just advise to keep it clean and shoot .223 thru it after a few hundred 22's. swaps out in seconds. Could be a cheap way to play around w/it as well as let my kids use it.
Old    sperbet            03-15-2011, 9:19 AM Reply   
Sweet, I want one too. You'll have to give me the run down next time you're in town. I looked into this before and it was too much info, I was in over my head.
Old    deltahoosier            03-15-2011, 9:25 AM Reply   
You have to watch which lower manufacturer you buy. You can not have a lower from from one of the "evil" rifle manufacturers. Stag, Colts, and a couple others are illegal to have in California. I bought Smith and Wesson MP15. It is billet and not cast That whole deal is stupid because it is only a empty piece of metal. That is the part that is registered as the rifle. You have to go through the waiting period to get it. Then you have to buy a trigger kit. I just got the DPMS trigger kit. Then you can pick up a high end trigger to drop in with the rest of the trigger parts if you want one of the hair triggers. I would suggest buying a different grip than the one that comes with the trigger kit. I get the comfort grip. They are nice. You can get either a Mil spec or I think it is called CA. stock. The mil spec is a smaller buffer tube. Then the upper. You can get gas impengment or gas piston. The gas piston is cleaner and will produce less heat but is also more expensive.

At the end of the day don't have a evil manufacture as a lower and get a bullet button. If you don't have a bullet button, then the rifle can't have a pistol grip or be center fire or a couple other things. Also, you can not have a magazine that holds over 10 rounds.

Like posted, go to for Kalifornia rules.
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       03-15-2011, 10:14 AM Reply   
Thanks guys.... Turns out I have quite a few friends with them that I didn't know about. I'm going to aim to keep it around $1k. I'd like to build a nice gun and not have regrets down the road about it. I'll make sure it's in spec and legal for CA. I don't want to mess with that.

Scott, for sure. We'll be giving that thing a workout this summer.
Old     (jarrod)      Join Date: May 2003       03-15-2011, 10:19 AM Reply   
B-Scott recently built one.
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       03-15-2011, 3:38 PM Reply   
Yup, we talked last night. I'm actually struggling to find better deals than a complete kit from They have a mil spec kit that I think I could tweak a bit to my liking. I'm still early into research, but can't wait to start ordering parts.
Old     (wakeboardingdad)      Join Date: Aug 2008       03-16-2011, 6:41 AM Reply   
Not to hi-jack this thread, but check out the Beretta AR-15. Wow!

Old     (bear)      Join Date: Apr 2005       03-18-2011, 7:04 AM Reply   
Heres a good how to, on building your lower. I used this video to go step by step on my first one.
Old     (jason_ssr)      Join Date: Apr 2001       03-18-2011, 8:11 AM Reply   
yeah, get it right the first time. Adjustable gas piston. Flat top. Mil-Spec.

You just gonna be plinking or have a specific task in mind?
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       03-18-2011, 10:43 AM Reply   
Just plinking. Having fun. Nothing specific.
Old     (ttuclint)      Join Date: Sep 2003       03-19-2011, 8:00 PM Reply   
I will be buying from these guys when I get some funds.
Old     (bear)      Join Date: Apr 2005       03-20-2011, 7:00 PM Reply   
check out these guys, they are great and I got one kit from them. I personally like Stag since it has a life time warranty. Never had an issue at all.
Old     (mikes)      Join Date: Jul 2007       03-21-2011, 10:42 AM Reply   
Originally Posted by bear View Post
check out these guys, they are great and I got one kit from them. I personally like Stag since it has a life time warranty. Never had an issue at all.
I am a lefty and have a Stag 2TL. Great gun. Stag(CMT)also manufactures alot of parts that are branded with other companies names. Pete at Legal Transfers is extremely knowledgeable about the AR platform and his business has very good feedback in the AR community. He is only about a 1/2 hour from my house and sells LMT as well. You shouldn't have any issues ordering from him.
Old    deltahoosier            03-22-2011, 5:56 PM Reply   
I don't think you are allowed to have a Stag lower in Cali.
Old     (mikes)      Join Date: Jul 2007       03-22-2011, 6:34 PM Reply   
Really? I am on the other side of the country so I am not familiar with Cali gun laws. Do the manufacturers have to be on an approved list or something? I noticed that you mentioned that you had an M&P. I find that amusing cause Stag used to make them for Smith&Wesson lol. Gotta love gun restrictions , they make no sense sometimes.....hahaha. At least you get the good weather out there.
Old     (westsiderippa)      Join Date: Dec 2006       03-22-2011, 11:11 PM Reply   
"I don't think you are allowed to have a Stag lower in Cali."

they are perfectly cali legal. you can go to riflegear (a cali based business) and have one shipped to your ffl tomorrow.

"Do the manufacturers have to be on an approved list or something?"

its just the opposite, there is a banded list of lower receivers. this is were the term OLL comes from, off LIST lower.
refer to for more info.

building an ar15 in cali is perfectly legal and easy to do if you follow the rules. always refer to the flow chart if your ever in question. it is outlined clear as mud right there.

Last edited by westsiderippa; 03-22-2011 at 11:14 PM.
Old     (liquidmx)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-23-2011, 9:13 AM Reply
Old     (westsiderippa)      Join Date: Dec 2006       03-23-2011, 10:52 AM Reply   
thanks m-dizzle.


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