.308 AR Build

Thinking aloud, been mulling around a .308 AR build and why would I not want to build it myself?  I’ve built a couple AR lowers already (but not uppers), and in the past built or re-built various motors from the ubiquitous (was once anyhow) VW boxer-motor (build-blow-up!-repeat…) to a two-valve Yamaha FZ 600 engine.  As a kid, partly since we were overseas some of the time where regular American toys were unavailable, I built my own model toys.  Boats, cars, balsa-wood and tissue-covered model airplanes that flew.  I even made my own toy-accessories, like a grenade “launcher” (more like “thrower”) for my Gi-Joe out of a clothes-pin spring and parts.  Back in the States instead of buying a toy car to play with I’d buy a plastic model and assemble it – but even better were the die-cast metal models that you assembled with tiny screws and everything – though instead of painting it I left it in the white. So build here means really “assembly.”

So why buy an AR when you can assemble one, especially when it’s mainly an assembly process of pins and springs – and especially here in CA where there are specific things you MUST do to conform, so you can customize it along the way? Is it so much cheaper to get the whole shebang including a bolt-carrier group all at once?

For a lower you need 27 small items: Front Pivot Pin, Take Down Pin, Bolt Catch, Bolt Catch Screw, Bolt Catch Buffer & Bolt Catch Spring, Disconnector & Disconnector Spring, Trigger, Trigger Pin & Trigger Spring, Hammer, Hammer Pin & Hammer Spring, Selector & Selector Spring, Take Down Detent, Detent Selector & Detent Spring, a Magazine Catch, Magazine Catch Button & Magazine Catch Spring, Pistol Grip, Pistol Grip Lock Washer & Pistol Grip Screw, a Buffer Retainer Pin & Buffer Retainer Spring…

And maybe you want an easier-to-open large-head take-down pin, or a different grip, or need a heavier buffer and buffer spring to go with a different stock assembly than the Manufacturer (Big Assembler) supplies – and then there’s the upper. And suppose you do NOT want an upper with a “forward assist” because they generally only make things worse.

But all the parts add-up too…


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The semi-sprawling adventures of a culturally hegemonic former flat-lander and anti-idiotarian individualist, fleeing the toxic cultural smug emitted by self-satisfied lotus-eating low-land Tesla-driving floppy-hat wearing lizadroid-Leftbat Califorganic eco-tofuistas ~

10 thoughts on “.308 AR Build

  1. If you want to look at your dilema logically, there’s really only one choice:
    1) Anything you’d need a .308 round for (i.e., over 200 yards, large game or something behind cover), you can already handle with your Garand. The only advantage to an AR-style build would be a small weight savings and more sex appeal.
    2) For short to medium range deterrence, nothing talks like a 12 gauge. Period.

    • It all depends on the scenario – will the post-meltdown be a running three-gun match or a distance challenge. The Garand is an eight-shot, and the short-range game here is pretty fragile – I need to harden things that can’t be hardened.

    • So, you can spend a whole wad of dough building an AR that mission-duplicates your Garand. It would weigh a pound or so less, carry 2 rounds more and probably reload quicker, too.
      Is it worth the bucks?
      I dunno. But I do know that you could build a competent 870-based 12 gauge for about 30% as much, and it would fill a mission role you currently have vacant.

    • Fiscal cliff gun? Just build it as a short-to-medium-range battle rifle with iron sights. That way you can punch through trees, vehicles, freeway soundwalls and overpass crenellations if necessary. Remember Boston’s advice from Boston’s Gun Bible: get your .308 FIRST.

      Add a long-range barrel and optics (and precision trigger) later if you want to use it for LR stuff. AR modularity FTW!

  2. At the 9th-Circuit Calguns lunch I met Jason Roybal of DarkSoulTactical.com, which runs D-I-Y AR builds out of their shop. I believe they’re near your place. 408-425-4614. Nice guys.

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