A Brief History of the AR 15
The AR 15 semi-automatic rifle has an unmemorable history. It was designed in 1956 by Armalite. In 1959 the patent to the AR 15 was sold to Colt. It was marketed to civilians as the counterpart to the military fully automatic M4 rifle. In 1977 the patent was allowed to expire and the AR platform became open-source. This means a variety of companies began to offer and construct AR 15 style rifles.
Today the AR platform has become one of the world's most recognized and iconic rifles around. It is manufactured by both large and small companies across the United States as well as the rest of the world. In fact, the AR 15 has become one of the favorites for garage builders as well. AR 15 Parts are readily available from hundreds of online suppliers and sellers.
The rifle can be built and customized with only a few tools and by watching YouTube videos. The main thing to remember is to purchase your lower receiver from a dealer with an FFL. This is because the only part of a AR 15 that is considered a gun and must be registered is the lower receiver. However, when you start picking out parts, be sure to check with your local regulations. The length of the barrel is the main, but not only, regulated assembly configuration.
Before you get your hand's dirty building your own AR 15, take a minute and learn the basic parts of the rifle. We have put together a great AR 15 Parts Diagram that lists all the AR 15 Parts you need to know.
AR 15 Lower Receiver
The lower receiver is the part of the rifle that houses the fire control group, magazine well, and pistol grip. They come made in several ways, the two most popular are forged or machined. Forged lowers are made by hammering thin metal into their final shape. Billet lowers, on the other hand, are machined into their shape using a mill to remove material from a solid piece. Forged receivers tend to be slightly stronger. However, billet receivers tend to be lighter weight.
s stated before, the lower receiver is the only AR-15 part that is legally considered a firearm. It contains a registered serial number and there are specific regulations that govern its purchase.
If you decide to purchase a stripped lower receiver you will need to buy the missing lower receiver parts. These include a trigger assembly, trigger guard, magazine catch/release, bolt catch/release, safety selector switch, grip, takedown pins, receiver extension (buffer tube), buffer, buffer spring, and buttstock. You can purchase these as a lower build kit or search for each separately.
The AR 15 upper receiver houses and protects the components on the top of your rifle. It can be a flat top or come with an integrated carry handle. A flat-top receiver typically has a Picatinny railing across the top. The carry handle receiver has a handle and rear sight assembly on top.
The upper receiver can be forged, billet, or cast. Cast receivers are the lightest option although they are also the weakest. You can purchase a stripped upper receiver, which contains only the upper receiver and will require more parts to complete.
A great option is to purchase a complete upper assembly. Parts in the upper receiver group that you will need to attach to a stripped upper include a forward assist, dust cover, charging handle, barrel, muzzle device, handguard, and bolt carrier group.
The easiest by far is to purchase a complete rifle build kit and get everything you need to build your rifle except the lower receiver. That is the piece you need to buy from your local FFL Dealer.
hen the round is fired, it is propelled by the high-pressure gas generated from the gunpowder explosion. The AR 15 uses some of that gas to eject the spent round and load a new round into the chamber. It uses the gas system made up of the gas block and gas tube. There are several different lengths of the gas systems depending on which configuration you are putting together. The different lengths are pistol (shortest), carbine, mid-length, and rifle (longest). One thing to remember is that the gas system components and the gas port on the barrel need to match.
AR 15 Furniture
Once the functional components of your AR 15 are in place, you will want to add the furniture. Furniture refers to the parts of your gun that you hold on to for support. These parts include the stock, grip, foregrip, and handguard.
Grips come in varying sizes, textures, and even angles. You should pick your grip based on what feels best for you. But to get started, the best course of action is to buy mil-spec and make any changes after you have fired a few hundred rounds and discovered what you wish was different. See what's available in stock now: AR 15 Grips
Adjustable, lightweight, with storage, colored, collapsible, and many more options are available for your stock selection. If you want to see a wide selection check this out: AR 15 Stocks and AR 15 Stock Kits
Handguards do more than just keep your hands from touching the barrel. They are a convenient mounting point for furniture and accessories. The things to remember when choosing a handguard are the length and the mounting style. Handguards come with Picatinny, M-Lok, and Keymod mounting points. They will all have different benefits and drawbacks, so it is a matter of personal preference.
AR 15 accessories are any other parts to enhance your guns such as scopes, straps, lights, bags, sights, gear, and even tools.
When you decide you want to build your own AR 15 for yourself, there is no better place to start than Black Rifle Depot. With 5-Star customer service, live inventory, fair prices, and fast shipping Black Rifle Depot is your one-stop-shop for AR15 Parts Online.