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Old 11-18-2004, 07:15 PM   #1
 
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mil-spec ar

i have bought a complete lower and i am in the process of getting a completed upper and "building" a A3 carbine, i wouldnt call taking a couple pins out and putting an upper on top and then putting the pins back building a rifle, so for my next AR i would like to build, really build, an AR from scratch. i want to build a usgi mil spec 100% reliable 20" A2. what i am asking for from you guys is a complete list of parts down to every last pin and spring and any manuals/books you can recomend to help me.
ss86
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Old 11-18-2004, 08:11 PM   #2
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Get the USGI ordnance or armorers manual......

You can also down load an exploded diagram of the AR15 from teh Bushmaster website.

Assembling an AR is fun and not hard to do. I did 4 of them this evening. Some receiver/parts combinations involve some tweaking. Stick to good quality parts and you won't have a problem.

Most suppliers thesedays sell uppers completely assembled and tested for liability reasons. But you can still get pieces.

If you have any specific questions, I would be glad to help.

Best,

Gerry
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:13 PM   #3
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you aren't going to be able to build a "mil-spec".....unless you know someone at FN that will be willing to "lunch box" all the parts out of there.......then what you will have is a true "mil-spec" rifle.... called a M16

the only thing that will be a "mil-spec" about the rifle you would build is if you insert a M16 mag in it
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:31 PM   #4
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both of the above posts are right on.

the only special tools you need are the receiver blocks and a barrel nut wrench. all can be had for $50, maybe a little more.

they are very easy to put together. IME, the better the parts, the easier the job.

it all boils down to the same old question: how much you want to spend?

I have heard many good things about M&A and JT kits, but IIRC they do not have the chrome lined barrels.

to get as mil-spec as you can, you need a USGI barrel, which can be had. the carrier cannot be mil-spec, even though a M16 carrier will work, it's illegal.

My advice would be to get all Rock River or Bushy parts, except the barrel. for that, get a Colt's or a real FN. FAW was supposed to have the real FN barrels available at some time. the next closest barrel to genuine military is the Bushy A2 profile. identical to USGI in all respects.
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Old 11-19-2004, 12:31 AM   #5
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Like said above, us lowly civilians are never going to get to 100% “mil-spec.”

FN is not allowed to sell their civilian parts to the general public. If you come across “real FN parts” they’re either seconds that were not properly destroyed, forgeries, or stolen.

That said, the closest thing we civilians can get is Colt. Going the Colt route will yield some very cool “mil-spec” parts, but you’re not going to even be close when it comes to the whole rifle.

In a nutshell, it won’t happen. If you’re able to locate and afford a genuine Colt M16, A1, or A2, then you’re in business, short of that, 100% isn’t going to happen.

I’ve been scratching my brain about this same thing for some time, and have decided that I’m going to have to concede in some areas. If you want to get real close with Colt, you can get almost everything “mil-spec” except the lower receiver and parts for the lower that are “mil-spec.” The lower receiver and lower parts are going to be 100% civilian though (even with small fire control pins, the military doesn’t use semi-auto parts in their M16s).

I’ve got a few Colts and a few Bushmasters and they’re all great. My two latest Bushmasters are an A2 and an M4; I’ve tried to make them as close to what the military uses as possible (barrel profiles, stocks, handguards, etc.) but they’re certainly not “mil-spec.” The next one will be a Bushmaster “A4gery.” This rifle will have the fixed A2 stock, Bushmaster flat top (A3) upper, and 20-inch A2 profile 1/7 Bushmaster barrel. All that will have it started, as time and money permit, I would like to add the KAC M5 railed forend and the ACOG currently being fielded by our troops.

When I’m done with the A4gery, I’m hoping to have something like this:

[img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/1003/ripper11/arf/07e87e9a.jpg[/img]


As things have it right now, I have the A2 and M4gery in the pic below.

[img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/JTR8541/ARFs/cd3e6324.jpg[/img]
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Old 11-19-2004, 01:19 AM   #6
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Re: mil-spec ar

Quote:
Originally Posted by straightshooter86
i wouldnt call taking a couple pins out and putting an upper on top and then putting the pins back building a rifle, so for my next AR i would like to build, really build, an AR from scratch.
BTW thank you.........you are the first person I have read that doesn't believe that putting a upper and lower together constitutes "building" a AR.......on another board, not the AR one, a guy stated that he "built" a AR......by puttting the small pieces in the lower, and attaching the buttstock to it, then matted it to a complete upper.....gee if that is building a AR.......with that way of thinking I can build just about anything.....by taking a DVD player and putting it in my computer, I just built a computer. put another radio in my car I built a car.

I though I was the only person that had this notion that mating a upper and lower or installing a few parts, didn't constitute a "build" nice to know I'm not the only one

and I wouldn't get too hung up on the word "mil-spec" if you see any part,or civilian AR rifle that is advertised as being "mil-spec" it's nothing more but a selling gimmick, to make you think you are buying a military part ....that word "mil-spec" has been battered around for so long in connection with a AR15, that some folks, new guys and some old guys..... really truely believe that their rifles is build with the same parts, to the same standards that FN builds the M16. there isn't a civilian AR, or AR parts that would be constitute as true "mil-spec".......a M1 garand is a mil-spec rifle, a M1903 is a mil-spec rifle, a M1917 is a mil-spec rifle.......a AR15 is a just a very close outward appearance of a M16......just buy the best available parts out there that fits your budget, and build the weapon that will closely resemble the configuration you want to mimic....and have fun done doing it.

the only FN barrel I ever saw, besides on the M16A2 I was issued when I was in, was near Dayton.......of course I didn't know if this was a unservicible barrel or a good one........but to give you a idea, Wright Patterson AFB is located there. it just set the hairs on my neck up.....no thanks.

anyway good luck on your build.
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Old 11-19-2004, 06:00 AM   #7
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There used to be a flood of FN barrels out there. Just about the time of the AWB. They were all 1/7 twist. Dual contour... (heavy from the handgaurd forward, standard weight under the guard.)
The supply may have dried up, as I haven't seen that many around.

Bushmaster commercial barrels are delivered with a 1/9 twist. As long as you don't go for SS, they are chrome lined.

The guys speak the truth about mil spec parts....
Unless you have a carrier that has been ground, it won't be a mil-spec piece.
Hammers used to have tabs ground off, but the commercial market started making them less expensive.
Being case hardened, no-one wants fire control parts that have been ground and not re hardened.

Colt commercial is a different business entity than Colt Defense inc (military).... Commercial receivers are entirely different animals at Colt.... Pin size differences etc....

Although a lower may be manufactured in the same process used in the military, if it is missing a couple of holes and markings, it is certainly not military. Most take this as a given when talking about a mil-spec receiver.
A Bushmaster, Rock River, or if you can find one, a forged receiver marked Century <serial number beginning with CMXXXX> The Century Receivers were forged and machined by the same group that forges and machines some Colt Military Receivers.

You can't have Military.... but you can get as close as is legal...
Pretty close....

As far as build vs assemble...........
I've been doing this for many years. In my opinion, it's the beauty of the rifle.... it was designed to be assembeld..... there is no great skill required. You assemble from parts even if you start from scratch.

A nut combo wrench (Barrel, receiver extension, FH - position) and a torque wrench, a set of drift punches, maybe a roll pin punch (not necessary but nice), a ft lb and inch lb torque wrench, a set of barrel jaws a good vise, screw driver, several allen wrenches, some premetex sealer, a set of sharp diagonal cutters, and some Molybdium disulfide grease, and you can assemble a rifle, from scratch. After doing a few, it will take you less than an hour complete. But don't rush it. With some after market parts, some fitting will be required. With all quality parts less chance of needing extensive fitting.

It is fun, and knowing you assembled it when shooting gives you a certain satisfaction.

These are easier than building a M1, an M1A or even a 1911 .45ACP.

The gun was designed as a kit gun..... so go at it!

Best,

Gerry
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Old 11-19-2004, 06:50 AM   #8
 
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there are still some legit FN barrels out there...they were bought by DPMS unfinished & completed by them to include Chrome Lining...

but, they easiest way to go is buy a complete Colt 1/7 upper & a Bushmaster complete lower
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Old 11-19-2004, 12:30 PM   #9
 
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where can i get those A4 handguards?

ss86
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Old 11-19-2004, 03:10 PM   #10
 
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What many seem to forget is that military specifications are often EXCEEDED by many civilian companies.

Why is everyone so hung up on military barrels? Some claim durability, but that is relative. There MANY chrome-molybdenum steel barrels that lack the beloved internal chrome plating that will last very near as long as a USGI barrel.

That "life" is defined as how many rounds a barrel can shoot before accuracy degrades to a certain point. Any chrome lined barrel that reaches the 10K round mark will do so with none too stellar accuracy.

Hell, I know people with stainless steel Krieger barrels on their NM ARs that are still capable of cleaning the 300 yard NRA target with high X counts and have just over 8K rounds through them.

I could care less if my parts had a DOD inspection stamp or record on them, as long as they come from someone like Rock River, Bushmaster, or Armalite. And yes, I know they subcontract some stuff. But subcontractors areheld to high standards by companies focused on quality.
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Old 11-22-2004, 08:52 AM   #11
 
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really depends on what you want your rifle to do; I think most people on the BB's envision a ShtF scenario in which they have to rely on their rifle...

1. chrome lining the chamber fixed nearly all reliability problems, of the M16, as far as chambering & extraction

2. chrome lining the bore makes the rifle more reliable in the field & easier to clean

3. SS won't SUSTAIN a high rate of fire required of a military rifle
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Old 11-23-2004, 02:03 PM   #12
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First, let's clarify some terminology. USGI means the item was actually issued by a United States military service branch and should be identified with a serial number and/or national stock number. "Mil-spec" is short for "military-specification," and is used to denote parts that meet the specifications of a DOD or service-specific contract. "Mil-spec" and USGI are not synonymous. A part can meet a set of specifications without ever being issued to troops. If Joe Bubba's machine shop got ahold of a set of blueprints or specs for an M16 firing pin, and manufactured a pin that meets those specs, then the pin is "mil-spec" but not USGI. So can you build a "mil-spec" AR-15? No, because of the already-covered differences in fire control parts, bolt carrier, and lower receiver and the legislative obstacles these entail. Same goes for USGI. HOWEVER, if you pay very careful attention to parts selection and manufacturer, you could come very close to your goal. Several years back, Bushmaster sold a limited number of M-4 carbines to Uncle Sam while Colt geared up for production, and I'd be willing to bet Bushmaster parts still meet military specifications for the most part. I picked up a surplus Colt-mfg Air Force M16 upper, and aqcuired a commercial Colt bolt/carrier/charging handle for it. I also have a set of surplus M16A1 furniture that is awaiting a lower receiver and lower parts kit to make a repro M16 lookalike that will have SOME USGI and mil-spec parts. So you can definitely meet your goal of assembling your own from parts, but you'll have to accept the fact that whatever you build WON'T be 100% USGI or "mil-spec." Much like an M1A vs M14.
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Old 11-23-2004, 07:05 PM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jefferson F. Davis
3. SS won't SUSTAIN a high rate of fire required of a military rifle
That so? What's the failure mechanism? Galling? Melting? Throat erosion?
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Old 11-23-2004, 08:07 PM   #14
 
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under rapid fire the throat wears more quickly on stainless steel barrels.

however chrome lining does not guarantee long life. i have read reports of full auto M4's running through barrels in less than 5000 rounds.
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Old 11-23-2004, 09:36 PM   #15
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SS doesn't dissipate heat as readily as standard steel. As Del has mentioned, one of the ramifications of this is premature throat erosion.....

For Semi auto and non "sustained" high rates of fire SS is fine.

Gerry
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Old 11-24-2004, 06:33 AM   #16
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OnTargetFL
SS doesn't dissipate heat as readily as standard steel.
that's what I was referring to...sorry, I wasn't clear @ first
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Old 11-24-2004, 08:16 AM   #17
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jefferson F. Davis
Quote:
Originally Posted by OnTargetFL
SS doesn't dissipate heat as readily as standard steel.
that's what I was referring to...sorry, I wasn't clear @ first
Which can be fixed by fluting, free floating, and choosing the right barrel thickness.
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Old 11-24-2004, 08:55 AM   #18
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWO daddy
Which can be fixed by fluting, free floating, and choosing the right barrel thickness.
none of which is MIL-SPEC
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Old 11-24-2004, 11:08 AM   #19
 
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[quote=Jefferson F. Davis]
Quote:
Originally Posted by "SWO daddy":1pgrvrti
Which can be fixed by fluting, free floating, and choosing the right barrel thickness.
none of which is MIL-SPEC[/quote:1pgrvrti]

Who cares? Military Specifications are often exceeded by commercial products.
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Old 11-24-2004, 11:54 AM   #20
 
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I do, & most people posting on this thread, the topic of which is Mil-Spec AR...I'm not trying to get in a whizzin' contest with you, simply state what is & is not, MILSPEC...
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