Building your own AR 15 can be a rewarding and fun project. You will learn how the gun functions and you will be able to get the exact parts you want. I recently finished putting together an AR 15 pistol build using an Anderson lower and a Palmetto State Armory upper build kit.
I decided to build my own AR 15 pistol for several reasons. The first reason is I enjoy shooting and collecting different types of guns and wanted a unique gun to add to my collection. The reason I decided to build a pistol was because I already own a Smith & Wesson Sport 2 AR 15 rifle.
AR 15 Pistol Build begins with good parts
The first step in the AR 15 pistol build project was deciding on the type of components I wanted to use. The cost of individual components will influence the type of parts you decide to buy. However, if you buy the cheapest parts on the market you may end up with a gun that is unreliable.
There are a lot of different companies making various parts for the AR 15 platform. Some companies make quality parts and some companies do not have a very good reputation for quality. I wanted to build an AR 15 that was reliable but didn’t break the bank.
Why I chose an Anderson Manufacturing Stripped Lower
There are a lot of very nice manufacturers who make a lot of good quality lowers. Many of them include special designs that can give your gun a very unique look.
I read reviews of various components online and watched a lot of video comparisons of them. The first part I decided to buy was a stripped lower from Anderson Manufacturing. The Anderson stripped AR 15 lower is very popular among gun builders and has a good reputation for quality.
Anderson Manufacturing has made a lot of AR 15 rifles and individual components over the years. They also manufacture parts used by other companies in their rifles.
Palmetto State Armory build kits
The next decision I needed to make for my AR 15 pistol build was the type of upper and parts kit to use. I decided to use the Palmetto State Armory 10.5 pistol build kit because it contained everything I needed including the new SBA3 brace. It was cheaper to buy the pistol build kit then it would be buying the individual components.
Palmetto State Armory is another company with a good reputation for quality products. A quality upper kit can make or break any AR 15 build. After I collected all the components it was time to complete the AR 15 pistol build.
Tools you need
You do not need a lot of fancy tools to build your AR 15 but some tools will help. Some tools you will need include pair of tweezers or needle nose pliers, small punch set and a rubber hammer. You will need an armors wrench to tighten the castle nut. A vice block is not required and is something I don’t own myself.
The first step in the process is to install the magazine release because you will not be able to get it in once the bolt release is installed. Drop the magazine release through the left side of the lower and install the spring and button from the right. Press the magazine release button into the lower and spin the magazine release catch until it is flush with the button.
Install the bolt release and other components to complete the lower. My video shows more details on installing the components. Once you’ve completed assembling your gun, it’s time to test fire it to ensure it functions correctly.