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Lightweight AR15 Build Questions

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by Joe Link, Nov 29, 2013.

  1. Joe Link

    Joe Link Portland, OR Well-Known Member Staff Member Lifetime Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    After taking a girl friend shooting yesterday, I've decided I need to proceed with plans to build a lightweight AR15. The weight of most of my rifles is just too high for most girls to shoot comfortably. It's been quite some time since I've looked into which components are available now days. While I need it to be reliable, this isn't a gun I'll be relying on for anything other than punching holes in targets. Because of this, and considering all the deals lately, I'm hoping I can come in around $500-600 for the build.

    What would you recommend?

    Here's the obligatory pic from yesterday, she had a great time :)


    orygun and (deleted member) like this.
  2. Nickb

    Nickb Moxee Active Member

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    There are lots of deals on parts today. I have read that the poly lowers don't save very much weight. A light barrel, a smooth free float hand gaurd will help with weight out front. If it's just punching paper no need for a quad rail or anything.
    Caveman Jim and (deleted member) like this.
  3. Garg

    Garg east of portland metro Hold my beer..... watch this

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    A poly lower (which are fine for plinking) a pencil barrel, stay away from free floating as they will add a little weight, standard plastic stock, and fore grip, even though I hate them a semi bolt carrier, should come in around the 5 to 6 lbs range, give or take, use 5 round mags. loaded 30's are also a little heavy.

    Edit, I see Nickb beat me too it lol
  4. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    If it's just for punching paper, I would not rule out the dedicated .22's. I have the Smith and Wesson M&P and it is one of the most fun rifles I own and it is ALWAYS first picked up by everybody especially women and children, That is when it can be pried out of my hands.

    There available for under 400 bucks too.
  5. skydiver

    skydiver Sandy,OR Well-Known Member

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    Brutus57 and (deleted member) like this.
  6. eldbillbo

    eldbillbo clackamas New world samurai and a redneck none the less Bronze Supporter

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    Well in one of many of my quest for various types of builds i have sought after light weight builds . These are suggestions but they are over your budget unless you get some good deals used . or just take some that apply.

    Some say don't float it. I say float it with carbon fiber float tube the weight factor after removing standard hand guards and retainer and delta ring assembly about balances out and with a light weight barrel you remove any stress from having the barrel not floated as well as carbon fiber is good for cooling.

    I took and removed a bunch of weight off a bolt carrier now this is not something a novice should but there are light wight bolt carriers on the market even aluminum ones but cost can get pretty high then run it with a tubbs or wolf extra power spring these don't add any weight but can handle the heavier recoil because the lighter you go the more recoil your gonna feel but the the extra power springs offset that.

    of course a light weight barrel and low profile gas block. if you can stand the noise a good muzzle break . the Poly upper and lower receiver are cheap and very light and cheap they can offset some of the cost mentioned to bring it back down to your price range. go with a basic fiber light old school collapsable stock not the heavier M4 or other aftermarket stocks that are heavy. unless you are going with open sights go with one the smaller red dots there are a lot of them on the market and they are tiny .
  7. 2Wheels4Ever

    2Wheels4Ever Portland Well-Known Member 2015 Volunteer

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    I have used both a new frontier arms lower as well as a plumb crazy lower. They get a bad rep because they are cheap and plastic, however they worked perfectly for me. Couple a plumb crazy lower with a bushy carbon 15 with the pencil barrel and you would have an extremely light gun. Once I get the funds I plan on doing exactly that set up. Should be around 5lbs.
  8. das_napeth

    das_napeth Snohomish, WA Member

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    My wifes lightweight AR is a Plum Crazy lower with Ace lightweight skeleton stock, pencil barrel 14.5", Troy TRX alpha modular handguard. Empty is about 4.5-5lbs.
  9. Oro

    Oro Western WA Active Member

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    I have been planning the same thing - a pure lightweight for my partner; she's small-ish. I am a lightweight fan myself, I have a Colt pre-ban lightweight sporter and a newer S&W Magpul Mid-gas; it has a light(er) weight barrel. Still not as light as a pure A1 like the Colt.

    I would get her that DPMS, or build one. I have started to take the latter route for my needs, I have a .50 cal box with parts accumulating, a stripped S&W Sport upper (no FA, deflector, or port door), Aero-built lower, quality LPK. I'll add an early Vietnam D-type solid stock and a 14.7" bbl when I find one and pin on a flash hider. Then a MaTech rear sight and a Vortex Sparc. Just really need to settle on a barrel and then I'll get it together next spring.

    I would tell you, though, that if you find a S&W sport pre-'13 with the 1/8, 5R barrel, don't ignore it. It is a little heavy with the heavy profile in front of the FSB, but the barrel is worth having and you can always get that turned down. I was going to do that to mine but then traded up to the Magpul/Mid instead. You can likely find one for $600 or less nowadays.

    Here are the LW's I have and really like:


    S&W Magpul Mid

  10. Tim K

    Tim K Colorado Member

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    Something looks out of whack with that photo. Your vehicle looks like it's 9 feet tall.
  11. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Ahhhh dude? that's an AK..........just so ya know