Budget builds vs Dream builds (Please come participate)

CoolShi7Designer

Marksman
Special Hen
Joined
Aug 4, 2021
Messages
69
Reaction score
113
Location
El Reno
OKshooters is a really great forum.
The community is welcoming and helpful and I'm super glad I moved here and found this forum.
One thing I see on many (and this) forum are "buy once, cry once" or "thats what you get for buying amazon!" type comments.
Especially about optics.....does anyone really think a guy buying an AR scope on wish doesnt know that buying a $600 Vortex is better?

So here's what I'd like to do....
Lets all be helpful and tell us all your personal recommendations at once.
Lets make a Budget vs Dream build thread with all the combined knowledge of the community.
The problem with shopping online is that any search pops up all the *biggest retailers* not all the best stuff.
The points of all this being:

1) There are a ton of small manufacturers and designers in the country that never get known except by word of mouth, so lets support any good products from small shops and makers
.
2) If the community buys into this thread, it will make a WAY better resource than the "top ten red dots under $100 in 2021" articles that are barfed by every gun mag across the internet all the time.

3) When you search, you see a huge gap in products between "chinese airsoft scope" and "Leupold VX-5HD". Most people building a rifle or kitting a pistol wont buy the best, they will buy the best *they can afford*. Should I spend the extra for a premium AR lower if I'm making an $800 build? Should I get a timney trigger? Aren't all red dots basically the same? We can fill in the gaps with our experience and we can tell each other about what we've found in the "bang for your buck" categories so that we can build the best guns on the budgets we have.

So for the budget build, try to keep your total below $1000 (including accessories and mags)
For local or small manufacturers, please post a website. I'd love to generate a huge amount of traffic for the little guys.

I'll post the first comment with mine so that I'm setting a good example.

Thank you all in advance

TheCoolShi7Designer
 

jackary

Sharpshooter
Special Hen
Joined
May 4, 2010
Messages
222
Reaction score
163
Location
Guthrie
I will say my experience with optics has been you get what you pay for. Airsoft optics are just that they are not made to withstand recoil and will eventually lose zero, if they hold it at all. If you are looking at cheep red dots. I would go with a company like Vortex or Primary arms that stands behind their product. If you are setting the total budget as $1000 I think it will be very hard to beat a factory rifle like an M&P sport or similar. You can pickup standard GI mags with upgraded followers for $10-12 a piece all over the place. Vortex and primary arms red dots start out around $200. I wouldn’t trust much under this price point especially when you can get an aimpoint PRO for around $450, and you can always buy used aimpoint or Eotechs for around that price also. Trigger upgrades are nice but there is nothing wrong with running a milpec trigger. Streamlight would be my budget weapon light.

At the end of the day it is hard too make suggestions without first knowing what the purpose for the gun will be. Anyone wanting to start a build should first decide the purpose that the gun will serve (ie.hunting, home defense, range toy, etc).

This would be my basic budget suggestion, you can always upgrade parts down the road as funds become available.

M&P 15 sport approximately $650-700
Primary arms or Vortex red dot approximately $200
5 Mags $50-60
Spend the rest on ammo.
 

SiGArmed

Yippie Ki Yay
Supporting Member
Special Hen Supporter
Joined
Jun 24, 2005
Messages
1,653
Reaction score
794
Location
405
M&P15 - $585
Optic - Holosun 503 red dot - $209
Light - Streamlight ProTac HL-X - $84
Ferro Slingster - $58 (attach with 550 cord)
10 pack of Pmags - $100
Total = 1036
 

CoolShi7Designer

Marksman
Special Hen
Joined
Aug 4, 2021
Messages
69
Reaction score
113
Location
El Reno
Damn I got busy at work and couldn't finish my post.


Lower
Aero precision stripped $70-$90
I've never had any issues with Aero, they assemble well and seem to have good QC
I don't have a dream build lower, I'd just use Aero.

Upper

There are a ton of decent complete uppers out there. I've built with compete uppers from Thunder tactical ~$300, Bear Creek Arsenal ~$250, and CBC industries ~$350. Bear Creek is the best quality IMO.

For my dream build I'd buy another Gibbz side charging upper ~$280

Handguards
This is 100% personal taste and I don't have a recommendation on anything being better or worse for a budget build.
For a dream build, I've been looking at the lancer carbon fiber ~$310

Gas system

For a solid budget build you can tune, stay with the normal DI system and get an adjustable gas block. IMO, this is one of the most necessary upgrades for any AR. Odin works mattress a good product as does spikes tactical ~$70
For the dream build, I absolutely love my Superlative Arms gas piston system. It was sucky to tune but oh man does it make for a clean shooting rifle. ~$290

Muzzle
Budget: Kaw Valley Precision linear compensator ~$60
Dream: X2DevGroup VF18-X ~$149
I have both of these on different rifles and they both work great. I recommend the VF18-X highly.

Fire control / trigger

Budget: aero precision LPK ~$50
Dream: Timney drop in competition trigger ~$200
Runner-up: Double Tap Arms binary trigger ~$200
This is a badass binary for half the price of a Franklin or Fostech

Optics / sights
Budget: Dagger Defense (veteran owned) I use multiple reflex red dots from them for ~$60
Dream: Sig Romeo + Juliet magnifier ~$750
Does the Romeo need a review? The combo with the magnifier is awesome.
Dagger also makes solid BUIS in straight and 45 deg.

Mags
I've never found a single poly mag that works better than mil-surp aluminum box mags.
When I buy poly, I buy Amend2 ~$15
(FOR AR ONLY! the Glock mags I bought from them are complete shi7)

These are my picks
Thanks to you guys that have responded and hopefully we'll keep getting more posts on the thread
 

CoolShi7Designer

Marksman
Special Hen
Joined
Aug 4, 2021
Messages
69
Reaction score
113
Location
El Reno
I will say my experience with optics has been you get what you pay for. Airsoft optics are just that they are not made to withstand recoil and will eventually lose zero, if they hold it at all. If you are looking at cheep red dots. I would go with a company like Vortex or Primary arms that stands behind their product. If you are setting the total budget as $1000 I think it will be very hard to beat a factory rifle like an M&P sport or similar. You can pickup standard GI mags with upgraded followers for $10-12 a piece all over the place. Vortex and primary arms red dots start out around $200. I wouldn’t trust much under this price point especially when you can get an aimpoint PRO for around $450, and you can always buy used aimpoint or Eotechs for around that price also. Trigger upgrades are nice but there is nothing wrong with running a milpec trigger. Streamlight would be my budget weapon light.

At the end of the day it is hard too make suggestions without first knowing what the purpose for the gun will be. Anyone wanting to start a build should first decide the purpose that the gun will serve (ie.hunting, home defense, range toy, etc).

This would be my basic budget suggestion, you can always upgrade parts down the road as funds become available.

M&P 15 sport approximately $650-700
Primary arms or Vortex red dot approximately $200
5 Mags $50-60
Spend the rest on ammo.
I was going more for a "piece by piece" idea rather than starting with a factory but your point is well made. Starting with a cheaper factory rifle and upgrading is a great way to end up at the goal. In terms of use, tell us how you'd build whatever setups you know about or have done. I'd love to see the suggestions for long range precision, short range home defense, post apocalyptic prepper builds and super fun range toys with tacticool kitch. I'm trying to draw out the products and brand names of good gear and components that we may not all know about.
 

CoolShi7Designer

Marksman
Special Hen
Joined
Aug 4, 2021
Messages
69
Reaction score
113
Location
El Reno
M&P15 - $585
Optic - Holosun 503 red dot - $209
Light - Streamlight ProTac HL-X - $84
Ferro Slingster - $58 (attach with 550 cord)
10 pack of Pmags - $100
Total = 1036
Thanks for the response!
Have you ever gotten a really awesome or really crappy grip from somewhere?
Who would you buy an upgraded BGC from?
Seen anything really new or innovative in the last couple years?
 

KurtM

Sharpshooter
Supporting Member
Special Hen Supporter
Joined
Jan 29, 2009
Messages
1,887
Reaction score
1,265
Location
Edmond
Upper, lower, who cares? All of them are about the same as long as the holes are in the right place, and the barrel fits the upper well, and if not you can always thermo fit it. Square the face of the upper!
Next, I have never been sorry when I bought a good barrel ie. Criterion, Wilson, Compass Lake, J.P., etc. Same with bolt and carrier, worth a little extra coin for good ones.
Triggers? I like J.P., there are lots of good triggers out there, but I have run into a lot of guys who start having problems with most of them over time. The J.P. I put in my practice rifle in 2004 now has had 4 barrels that I shot out on it, so it has been trouble free for about 50,000 rounds although I will admit I put in new springs in 2017.
I will also second the G.I. magazines with mag pul followers. I have never had any trouble with them, they just run and run. The only polymer magazine I got cracked at the feed lips after a couple of years of hard use, so I don't bother with them any longer.
Don't go cheap on optics! I shoot iron sights and even then I get the best I can find. When it comes to dot/lpvs, get the very best you can afford, and GOOD mounts.
"Dream rifle"??? Buy J.P. and never look back....but then again I am sponsored by them. I used their rifles well before I shot for them, but that full disclosure thing.
I.
 

OHJEEZE

Sharpshooter
Special Hen
Joined
Jun 9, 2021
Messages
886
Reaction score
1,128
Location
Not in Oklahoma!
Gee.....

A bugit build for under 1000 was hard to do (but doable) back in the 90's!

From the mid 90's
Colt hbar $700
Burris 2-7 compact (around) $200
Carry handle mount and burris rings $50 to $60

Is this ar's only?
Winchester mod70 larado 7mm mag $600
Burris signature 4-16 matt (cant remember but thought it was pricey back then 😁)
Burris signature insert rings $???
Weaver bases

Throw in a Harris bypod that fit either for $50 to $60
 

Latest posts

Top Bottom