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So I recently decided to give the whole "build it from parts" thing a try with an AR15, and so far I've picked up an Anderson stripped lower, PSA bolt carrier group, and a PSA A2 lower kit. This is going to be a budget build, acceptable accuracy being 2-3 MOA at 100 yards. I've never built an AR before, any recommendations on an upper on a budget?

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Clay, I just finished putting one (actually 4, but you asked about an A2) together myself. Anderson receiver, a Heavy Bbl, 20", Del-Ton upper that the LGS made me a deal on, the rest of the hardware is PSA, it easily is a 2" rifle.

https://www.del-ton.com/ar-15-barrel-assemblies-s/4.htm

The top rifle from this pic: [Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

The bottom 3, are PSA uppers, complete with BCG, and they were 'BLEMS'

Everything I buy from PSA is a 'blem'......... So far, I'm not sure that I can find the 'blemish'..............


Last edited by Muffin; 12/17/21.
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You can't build cheap. You have to have the biggest names. ETc...

LMAO.

While I would part together a better gun if my life relied on it, most of the times the cheaper stuff is just fine for fun. And truth be told lots of what you pay for is profit. Lots of parts are made by some of the single big companies, bought in bulk and sold under various names...

2-3 moa with good ammo takes the cheapest barrel you can buy basically.
2-3 MOA with ball bulk ammo, the best barrel might not make it consistently.

bear creek uppers. Under 300 on Black Friday. Just shot mine. Looks like it will hold MOA basically pretty easily with the right ammo. PSA nothing wrong with either.

And from eons ago Model 1 sales IIRC, out of IL. Sold some cheap surplus stuff, even back then the accuracy was more than good enough... people laughed and bought COLT. I didn't. In fact the one colt we finally bought, the trigger/hammer pins wallowed out after 2 barrels and had to reswage the holes. Something I've only had to do with one other lower since the 80s.


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Originally Posted by rost495
You can't build cheap. You have to have the biggest names. ETc...

LMAO.

While I would part together a better gun if my life relied on it, most of the times the cheaper stuff is just fine for fun. And truth be told lots of what you pay for is profit. Lots of parts are made by some of the single big companies, bought in bulk and sold under various names...

2-3 moa with good ammo takes the cheapest barrel you can buy basically.
2-3 MOA with ball bulk ammo, the best barrel might not make it consistently.

bear creek uppers. Under 300 on Black Friday. Just shot mine. Looks like it will hold MOA basically pretty easily with the right ammo. PSA nothing wrong with either.



Odds are there will be lots of cheap bulk run through this, like most of my guns. Bear creek I’m a little leery of, heard the machine work on their barrels isn’t all that. PSA and Aero are both on my radar, I’ll check out and see if I can find one of those Model 1 somewhere

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CB right now PSA has some complete uppers with and without bcg and ch's at some hard to beat prices.
The stuff I've got from them works finr...mb


" Cheapest velocity in the world comes from a long barrel and I sure do like them. MB "
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An Anderson upper will work just fine if you can locate one...............or this one will work too for $65.

I've used one before, snug fit on the lower with the pins but they go in & everything else aligns & fits & the finish is fine.

MM

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I've had good results with AR-Stoner stripped uppers and uppers with the dust cover/forward assists already installed.

Also stripped uppers from PSA.

Budget barrels from AR-Stoner (Midway), PSA, DSA, and DPMS have all worked fine. One of my more accurate barrels is from Ballistic Advantage, a few bucks more, but still quite affordable.

The only place I got burned was a barrel from TNTE Sales, the barrel extension came loose while I was installing it on the upper receiver. It needs a proper torque/headspacing, and I'm not tooled up to do that properly.

Anyhoo, good luck and have fun with it. Be warned, it can get addictive after the first one......grin

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I appreciate the feedback gentlemen, got a lot to look at between now and next payday. Definitely liking what I'm seeing about PSA's upper quality, and I don't see much priced better for a blem one.

Montana, I definitely understand that. Picked up firearms thinking it would be cheaper than cars, but definitely doesn't seem to be the case xD

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One of my favorite "low cost" providers is DSA. They make Mils Spec parts for military contracts and have good prices.

Aero and BCM uppers are better in my experience, but for $40 stripped, and $55.00 Complete are good deals.

https://www.dsarms.com/c-784-upper-receiver.aspx?pagesize=100&sortby=priceasc


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I have 2 Del ton uppers that are the 2-3 inch guns that are great shooters. If I found the right barrel I'd buy from Del ton again.

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Surplus Ammo has good uppers.

I’ve had great luck with Faxon and Ballistic Advantage, more so with Faxon. For a while those were budget. Don’t know about now.

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Don’t rule out Red-X Arms. I won an upper from them in 2020. My only complaint is the barre is a 1:9 twist 5.56. While I would prefer a 1:7 or 1:8 twist, the barrel is a shooter. Putting my Teslong bore scope though it, I have no complaints. I have also bought just an upper receiver from them for another build and I have no complaints about it.

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Any of you guys hear of KM Tactical? They sell a lot of inexpensive parts. I bought some inexpensive handguards from them. A local shop had some for $59, so I figured what the heck. Look exactly like my $270 Noveske NSR's, but a lot less money, and they work very well. Seem to be very rigid and accuracy stays the same:

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

Can you figure out which one is not a NSR?
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

They have some very light M-lok rails on sale right now. The op may want to check them out:
KM Tactical M-Lok skinny rail on sale: $39.95


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I try to stick with the basics, they do so well. Nothing fancy mind you, just plain jane will get it done with style.

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BSA,

I met an older gentleman a couple years ago shooting a 6.5 Grendel with a KM Tactical barrel. I had never heard of them before. He told me he paid $64.99 for the Grendel barrel. It was hit first time out with it and he was shooting darn near sub-MOA groups with it at a 100 yards He thought his shots were all over the place, so he asked me to spot for him. When I told him they were all grouping together in one right group he got a smile on his face. Needless to say, I was pretty impressed I know he had a scope on it, but I want to say it was just a 3-9x40 Leupold.

Last edited by Hudge; 12/19/21.
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Originally Posted by Hudge
BSA,

I met an older gentleman a couple years ago shooting a 6.5 Grendel with a KM Tactical barrel. I had never heard of them before. He told me he paid $64.99 for the Grendel barrel. It was hit first time out with it and he was shooting darn near sub-MOA groups with it at a 100 yards He thought his shots were all over the place, so he asked me to spot for him. When I told him they were all grouping together in one right group he got a smile on his face. Needless to say, I was pretty impressed I know he had a scope on it, but I want to say it was just a 3-9x40 Leupold.

Thanks Hudge. That is pretty dang good at any price. I know my LGS carries their barrels and they are exceptionally priced. I've never tried one. But the shop owner says everyone seems to be happy with them. "No one has ever brought one back", he says. I figured I'd give a couple of their handguards a try. I've been very pleased with them. They seem to be very rigid and lightweight. Feel good in the hands too. Here's another one I bought from them:

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

They fit up great and color match some of my receivers. Not all, but some.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

I even did some accuracy testing, because I have seen some differences in accuracy when switching parts. Here's how my Northtech Defense shot with that handguard:
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
You can see where the picatinny rail on the handguard doesn't line up perfectly to the receiver picatinny. But it's not all too noticeable.

Then with the NSR look alike that was $59...:
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

Just relaying my "cheap" parts experience to others. I generally buy good bolts to go in my BCG's and use good triggers. All of my rifles use Armaspec lower parts kits. I don't know how those fare in price compared to others, but I like the look of the Armaspec stuff and it hasn't failed me yet...
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


Originally Posted by raybass
I try to stick with the basics, they do so well. Nothing fancy mind you, just plain jane will get it done with style.

Originally Posted by Pharmseller
You want to see an animal drop right now? Shoot him in the ear hole.
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Might as well stick with PSA.


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Ended up being offered a complete BCA upper for a price I felt was reasonable, so going that route. Should have this together in the next few weeks hopefully

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Originally Posted by ClayBelt
Ended up being offered a complete BCA upper for a price I felt was reasonable, so going that route. Should have this together in the next few weeks hopefully


Let us know how the gamble worked out.
Some people get lucky. At my club around 20-40% go back to BCA.


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The U.S Government has a unique capacity for getting things upside down.
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Figure at 180 shipped across the country for a used one that’s complete with a BCG, it’s either going to be a crapshoot I use as trade materiel or else it’ll result in a $350 AR build

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I built a .300 BLACKOUT on the cheap with I think a Korean made barrel can't remember currently and it shoots Green/White box Remington ammo into 3/4" at 100 yards.

And has been 100% reliable after I got the correct spring in it.


Goes to show you never can tell.


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