so i know ive hit you guys up in the past with some of my questions about buying an AR but i have finally made the decision to invest in the big bad black rifle. because i like to work with my hands and i wont be able to just pick one up and run out to the range every weekend for some target shooting, ive decided to build one. this way i get to enjoy building it and allow the anticipation to build as well. as a plus i can spend small amounts at a time, which always makes my wallet happier:thumbup:. i'll try to keep my thoughts organized, i tend to jumble them up a bit sometimes. this is also something ill be buying pieces for once a month to reward myself for keeping up with the more pressing stuff. cant go wrong giving yourself some incentive to keep things in order. so what ive decided so far: -stripped lower and a stag arms kit to fill it. i chose the stag arms kit because it has great reviews as well as being noted to have a couple extra pieces known to be lost in the build process. material and producer still to be chosen(i'll get back to that). i may look for a more ergonomic grip later on. -complete upper. though i would like to put everything together myself, i understand there are some safety concerns when it comes to proper torque and matching the bolt assembly to the barrel. this will give me peace of mind and save me a trip to a gunsmith. i have a couple choices in mind as far as producers but i havent made any hard choices, other than 16.5" barrel to keep weight down. i also want to have the M4 feed ramps on it but i understand it to be unnecessary. free floating, quad rail, flat top, 5.56/.223. minor notes: flip up sights, adjustable stock, and a mounted flashlight as it will be built for both range trips and home defense. all to be chosen as i go. now the guys i need help from will know what im missing from those notes but to keep it simple i'll list the things i need direction on. -twist, because i find it difficult to get any consistent info on what is best. i'm near the point of just taking what is is most available because its mostly a small difference to begin with, though because im choosing a shorter barrel i may stay a bit closer to the tighter side. -barrel type, i see that forged barrels are the most expensive but also have some unique qualities on top of being the most robust. on the other hand its also the heaviest, which is counter to what i want. i think i would prefer the most practical (balanced cost and function) barrel with the least weight. -- these 2 ^^^^ may also be subject to the manufacturer i buy from, which will make more sense as i continue. -i also would like to get poly upper and lower receivers to keep weight down and i really like the way poly feels while im shooting over steel or aluminum. many companies do not carry poly(which may dictate a couple of my previous choice concerns) nor can i find reviews that dont show bias when it comes to the amount of force it can take compared to the metal counter parts. a positive note is that i have found just as many complaints about poly as aluminum lowers failing. -quad rail, im also temped to get a poly quad rail but it may be a bit more practical to get it in aluminum to help with accuracy, as the weight will help stabilize. (i could be wrong about that) -threaded barrel? im not sure if this is the best choice but in the distant future i may choose to purchase a suppressor. as far as i can tell, this will double the cost of the rifle and has only a small effect on sound. i think it could help me with resale value but this is low on my list. now for some concerns. (not counting my girlfriend complaining about me heading to the range more often) -i want to keep total costs below $1500, which as far as i can tell is more than reasonable but some accessories can make some big differences. -(in case you didnt notice before) light weight is also very important. i want to use it for home defense so walking through my home scared, naked and half awake with a rifle is bad enough (should the unlikely need arise), i wouldnt want it to feel like a ton of bricks in my hands to boot. i encourage my friends to learn more about guns and often invite them to the range. it would be nice if i could hand them a rifle that also feels good in their hands. -it goes without saying i want it to look good too. it bugs me when i see one at the range looking confused about what color it wants to be. maybe its just me and my peeves though, any suggestions would be welcome but this one was mostly said for fun. -tools, i have found many, many videos showing how to put them together but none that give a good list of tools needed to do this properly. anyone that can point me in the right direction gets and extra thumbs up for being super awesome. sorry about making it so long but i just wanted to be thorough. Thanks in advance for reading all of this and hooking me up with some direction.