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An AR-15 Retro Rifle

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RWS
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An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#1 Post by RWS » Sat Jun 10, 2017 11:50 am

I built a retro AR-15A1 rifle. I think the parts comprise a model that would have been manufactured in mid 1970. As an old geezer I like the fact that it weighs only 6 lbs and gets me 6-inch groups at 300 yards with iron sights.

It is comprised of an Essential Arms A1 lower receiver, Colt A1 upper receiver, Colt 1-in-12 barrel with chrome chamber, FN bolt with DPMS bolt carrier, birdcage flash suppressor, and M-16 buttstock, grip, & handguards.

A few parts, such as the charging handle and buffer are not period correct, but I'm watching for original parts to show up so as to increase the authenticity. This is pretty much the same configuration as the first AR-15 I shot back in the 1960's. I note that retro rifles are not the rage these days. Most guys want a more "tactical " AR, I think. I like the older ones myself.

Anyone else got a retro rifle for show & tell?

-Bob
RetroAR15.JPG

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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#2 Post by Rapidrob » Sat Jun 10, 2017 2:18 pm

I cobbled one together a few years ago using original A1 parts other than the lower which is a Colt SP1. I found the upper receiver new in wrapper
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I found the rear sight assembly,ejection port door, charging handle as new surplus
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I found a used,like new original 20" barrel, 1:12 with a duck bill flash hider
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Some of the markings on the parts
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I have a couple of the lowers,wit hand without the correct pistol grip
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Here is the completed rifle and a spare Slick upper that I built as a RETRO joke rifle
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The Retro rifle shoots very well out to 600 yards with 55 grain bullets, it will hit our 800 target IF the bullet stays stable in our calm thin air
200 yard target from the bench
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#3 Post by M67 » Sat Jun 10, 2017 2:26 pm

Beautiful! Much better design than nowadays!
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#4 Post by PennsylvaniaRifleman » Tue Jun 13, 2017 1:13 pm

RWS, that's a beautiful rifle. My "retro" rifle is pictured below--it's an early 70's vintage SP-1 with a Colt 3x scope. My father bought it complete (used) for $400 in the early 80's. I knew I was going to enlist in the Marine Corps, and convinced him that having my own AR-15 would be a great advantage. I was right--being intimately familiar with the design meant a lot less things to worry about at Parris Island. We had M16a2s in boot-camp, but I didn't see another A2 until I was in my final year of enlistment. My unit still had A1s and I never failed to qualify "Expert." Just last week I finally added another AR to my collection. I decided I wanted an M4 style carbine that I will set up like the Patrol rifles my department uses at work--with a red dot sight etc. It will never totally replace my old SP-1.
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#5 Post by Hammerdown » Tue Jun 13, 2017 2:10 pm

They are some nice looking rifles. I need to light a fire under my retro build and get it done.
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#6 Post by Ozzman » Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:30 pm

Very nice
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#7 Post by ghostdevilguy » Tue Jun 13, 2017 5:06 pm

My next build is going to be a retro build, funny enough I will probably use it as a truck rifle. I just have to find a good deal on an a1 upper.

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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#8 Post by RWS » Tue Jun 13, 2017 6:29 pm

What do you consider to be a "good deal"? FWIW, Brownells has new stripped A1 uppers for $150. Not USGI, but mil-spec.
http://www.brownells.com/rifle-parts/re ... 83620.aspx

-Bob

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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#9 Post by ghostdevilguy » Tue Jun 13, 2017 6:47 pm

I'd consider around $120 a good deal for a beat up but still functional a1 upper.

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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#10 Post by SWIHARTMARK » Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:14 pm

Nice rifle. I hope to make one using an A3 upper with a hand carry attachment just to have more options down the road. Can't beat a 20" barrel and an triangular hand guard.

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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#11 Post by Point-man » Sun Jul 02, 2017 5:27 pm

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My son gave me a lower and a lower parts kit for my 65th birthday. The barrel is a Del-ton 1-9.
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#12 Post by Phantomrig » Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:22 pm

I purchased an A1 upper stripped from royal tiger last year for 65 I believe.
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#13 Post by S.B. » Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:00 am

Nice job, Bob. Wish I'd of kept the SP1s I've owned over the years.
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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#14 Post by RWS » Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:25 pm

Me too, Steve. I've had a couple and they were very accurate and reliable rifles. I liked everything about them except the screw for a pivot pin rather than a push pin. Otherwise, no complaints at all about SP1's.

-Bob

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Re: An AR-15 Retro Rifle

#15 Post by ffuries » Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:48 pm

Sweet looking rifle, I love the retro style M16/AR15, reminds me of what I used when I was in the AF, we were just picking up M4's in my unit when I was retiring.
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