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80% AR15 Lower Completion

Discussion in 'GUNSMITHING & FIREARMS' started by MaverickNH, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. MaverickNH

    MaverickNH United States Active Member Active Member

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    So I have picked up an 80% AR15 lower and some drill-press jigs to complete the lower, but am really trying to talk myself into a mini-mill to do the job right. That, and I haven't used lathes/mills since machine shop class in high school in the early '70s and would like to get back into metalwork as a hobby and something to do with my son, who will turn 14 shortly.

    I might work back to making lowers from <80% forgings to gain experience, as well as doing some mill projects to learn more.

    I've been looking at a Little machine Shop HiTorque 3960 mini-mill and starter tooling kit. This is pretty much in my price range and size range.

    Any thoughts appreciated.
     
  2. AR1911

    AR1911 United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    LMS sells good stuff. I suspect that mill is the best minimill on the market.
     
  3. Alphawolf45

    Alphawolf45 United States Active User Active Member

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    I rather see a man buy machines weighing closer to 2500 lbs but if size and price dominate the decision you can do a lot of good work with the smaller mill but working much slower...Later on convert it to cnc for engraving and such small intricate work will really get the interest worked up in your teenager....Have fun.
     
  4. tripletap3

    tripletap3 United States Active User Active Member

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    Please keep me informed on your progress Maverick. I have been wanting to try one of the 80% lowers. I have learned as a gunsmith that drilling precision holes is all about layout then rigidity, rigidity, rigidity so you need a solid machine. I try to buy everything I can from LMS. I think they research all of their stuff for quality first before they sell it. Their mill is a Seig and I would buy it from them even if it cost a few more dollars than from someone else. It looks like they add a larger table and a few other specific features that others don't have. The biggest thing to consider about buying Asian stuff is the company selling it to you. The importer/seller are the ones who will insure the quality of what you get, honor a warranty and support you not the factory.
     
  5. MaverickNH

    MaverickNH United States Active Member Active Member

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    We have an old but working Bridgeport in the basement of our building in South Boston that nobody has used for years. If I paid for removal and transportation, they would probably let me have it, but my wife would kill me. No place it would fit but the garage. So we make compromises...

    Yeah - CNC would be a good addition, and educational too!

     
  6. Metalmann

    Metalmann Active User Active Member

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    "If I paid for removal and transportation, they would probably let me have it, but my wife would kill me."



    Tell her how much better a Bridgeport is compared to other cheaper, smaller; milling machines.

    If that doesn't work, tell her how much safer it is; say that you want to be around for many years to come.

    If none of that works, throw a hissy fit till she agrees.:phew::whistle::))
     
  7. ranch23

    ranch23 United States Active User Active Member

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    And don't forget the status of just having a Bridgeport, that'll get her.
     
  8. ScrapMetal

    ScrapMetal United States Active User Active Member

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    :lmao: :lmao: :lmao: :lmao:

    -Ron
     
  9. leadunderpressure

    leadunderpressure United States Active User Active Member

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    What jigs are the best for completing one of these
    Lowers? I see several different jigs available at similar price points.

    LUP
     
  10. OakRidgeGuy

    OakRidgeGuy Active User Active Member

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    I have the LMS and I am going to CNC mine, I plan on doing a 45 acp and also a AR15 on mine.. When the time is right..
     
  11. Riven

    Riven Iron Registered Member

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    OakRidge didn't mention jigs (oops, maybe he did - ?LMS?) but I'm assuming that if he's going to CNC them then the commercial jigs are unnecessary - a couple pieces of aluminum shaped to the outside of the receiver will do fine.

    If using a hand drill or press than I'd want a commercial jig, but right now I'm shaping jigs per Ray-Vin's manual and plan on using those with a BP for probably a 20% forging (or maybe a zero, I haven't decided yet).
     
  12. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk United States Active User Active Member

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    For a jig, look at cnc guns.
    +1 for the rayvin guide but also take a look how Justin did his at cnc guns, I got ideas from both. I am not finished but started with 0% lower.
    Take a look at goobers posts there, lots of knowledge and nice guy.
    rob
    image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg

    image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg
     
  13. OakRidgeGuy

    OakRidgeGuy Active User Active Member

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    I have not been able to get CNC Guns to open the past couple of days..

    But now thanks to a fellow over on the zone. i have the complete blueprints.. for a 1911
     
  14. dennis98277

    dennis98277 Active User Active Member

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    holly smoke batman do you think i can get a copy of those 1911 i would love to try my hand at a build from a billet. can understand if you cant thought i would ask that never kills nobody i think :rofl:
     
  15. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk United States Active User Active Member

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  16. OakRidgeGuy

    OakRidgeGuy Active User Active Member

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  17. igluit4u

    igluit4u United States Active User Active Member

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    Blackhawk, do you have a link to Justin's build on cnc? I am getting ready to start a 0 and want all the info I can get before I decide on how to do it!

    Thanks!
     
  18. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk United States Active User Active Member

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  19. igluit4u

    igluit4u United States Active User Active Member

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    Awesome, thanks very much! I'll read up on them tonight.

    I am going to do this one old school. I have a DRO Bridgeport that does most of my milling work at the shop, so that will be the tool I use. Only issue it has is that the Z axis DRO doesn't work and I haven't figured out yet how to get the auto feed to work for the X and Y, but that hasn't really caused my any issues yet and I don't foresee it being a problem here on this build. I'm going to start with a 0% forging, have a couple backups on the way just in case I make a big mistake... LOL
     
  20. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk United States Active User Active Member

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    Where did you get your lowers?

    Hope i don't get banned for posting this but here is my hill billy dro, what can i say, i was desperate and it worked:lmao:


    lanham, formerly of buckhannon west virginia.:nuts:


    bilbilly dro.JPG

    bilbilly dro.JPG
     
  21. igluit4u

    igluit4u United States Active User Active Member

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    I have one that I got a while ago 0% (have to look at home tonite and see who I got it from... lol) and another on the way from Tactical Innovations (0%) and I just ordered one of RGuns last night as a backup backup...:rofl:

    I have also seen a 95% lower that a friend got. It was complete, all the holes except the FGC pocket milling. That was nice, since all the little minutia holes were already done. The 80% lowers that I've seen usually need a few of the spring/detent holes done and perhaps the buffer tube detent hole.
     
  22. igluit4u

    igluit4u United States Active User Active Member

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    Love that Hillbilly engineering! :lmao: Ya gotta do what you gotta do in a pinch.. I was actually working with the mill today and looking at how I can mount a dial indicator to index off the Z axis device mounted on the spindle.. I think I can make it work... LOL

    I've seen some variations on 2 and 3 pc bolt together lowers, good for CNC, but I'm not sure how I'd like a multi piece lower.. :shrugs:

    Did the driver and passenger side plates and the hole jig for the bolt catch pin hole today, now to do some more research and compile a procedure! :drink:
     
  23. MaverickNH

    MaverickNH United States Active Member Active Member

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    I did get that LMS 3960 Mini Mill, as well as a LMS 9x12 mini lathe. Those and an 80% AR-15 lower and jigs bought in Nov'12.

    Good thing I bought when I did - all the 80% lower vendors I've checked are backordered for months - one listing out to Aug13.
     
  24. n3480h

    n3480h Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Roger that. Seems RGuns is so busy they will not respond to emailed questions about delivery time for the two paperweights I ordered. Oh well, not in a big hurry, the Armalite is still making deliveries to the local coyotes.

    Tom
     
  25. AR1911

    AR1911 United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    So order a few 0% lowers and practice your skills. they are cheap enough you can ruin 3 or 4 before you are at the price of a plastic lower.
     
  26. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk United States Active User Active Member

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    i was wondering what was up with rguns, i ordered 5 on 19 dec and have heard nothing, was getting a little worried.:thinking:
     
  27. AR1911

    AR1911 United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I am wondering about doing the mag well on a shaper.
    I don't recall reading a single build where a shaper was used for this, but it seems like a natural application.
    Sure would like to see a setup
     
  28. dennis98277

    dennis98277 Active User Active Member

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    hi blachawk i placed an order today for 5 and it went through fine plus a buddy over at weapons guild was saying the same thing eailer and when he came home this afternoon there was a package on the front door and he got them so i would say that they are extremaly busy just like the rest so it will probally showup soon:))
     
  29. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk United States Active User Active Member

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    maverickNH,

    make sure to post some pics of the twins, would love to see them. if you don't mind, some pics of the process when you start.

    lanham
     
  30. igluit4u

    igluit4u United States Active User Active Member

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    A few pics of my first project, an 80% lower that I finished on CNC and just got back from the finisher with a hardcoat finish applied... hope it all works! :rofl:

    Still working on my 0% on the old school mill, but this will keep me inspired for sure!

    IMG_0056 (800x600).jpg

    IMG_0057 (800x600).jpg

    IMG_0058 (800x534).jpg

    IMG_0056 (800x600).jpg IMG_0057 (800x600).jpg IMG_0058 (800x534).jpg
     

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