The recent publication of the much-discussed BATFE White Paper on possible loosening of firearms restrictions is an oddity. It strikes me as some sort of frantic backpedalling. It is as if a thirteen-year-old was left at home in charge of his younger siblings, and they’ve spent an entire day acting like cruel, slovenly, brats. Then comes the sudden realization that their parents will soon return. “Quick, clean the house and get the cat out of the clothes dryer, or Dad is gonna spank us, for sure!” Well, in this case it wasn’t just one day. It has been more like 50 years of bad behavior. (For example, do some reading about Ken Ballew.) The White Paper’s list of changes won’t even begin to be proper recompense. Daddy is coming, and there will be lots of real change around the house. Among other things, the White Paper mentions ALLOWING us to shoulder pistols equipped with arm braces. Well, whoop-de-doo and thanks for your magnaminious gesture, Oh Lord and Master. How about instead doing something SUBSTANTIVE and completely do away with barrel length and pistol foregrip restrictions? (The $200 tax SBR and SBS technicalities.) Or even better, how about disbanding the BATFE entirely? There’s some genuine Hope and Change for you. – JWR
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From Wranglerstar: We Are in Deep, Deep Trouble!!
JWR’s Comment: We are in similar snow conditions here at The Rawles Ranch. We’ve had so much snow in the past eight weeks that our horses and cattle are confined to their pastures only by The Honor System and by their force of habit. They could step over their fences with very little effort. They know where we feed them their hay and they know this is where we keep their stock tanks full and heated (free of ice), so thankfully they stay put.
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From Mike Williamson, SurvivalBlog’s Editor at Large: Need an AR but on a tight budget? Build it!
One of the big savings is not paying the 11% excise tax on a whole rifle, only on a receiver.
I would additionally note that several components should be milspec or better for durability. Many cheaper components are of cheaper materials and thereby weaker.
For a carbine, you should absolutely have a hammer extruded receiver extension, not a milled one. It will be almost twice as strong and have more thread mating surface over one that isn’t. The phrase “milspec” in advertising often refers only to dimensions. You must look for the phrase “hammer extruded.”
Your bolt carrier group should be shot peened and at least batch tested, if not individually tested, per the mil spec. I do recommend either hard chrome or nickel boron finish instead of parkerizing– they are newer coatings, with lower coefficients of friction, resistance to corrosion and buildup, and easier to clean.
If you plan either long service life or a lot of cyclic fire, then the military spec alloy barrel is a big plus.
With all this, it’s still possible to get a very personalized, highly durable AR rifle for far less than the factory cost.
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