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#5579820 - 02/03/15 08:11 AM Newbie to AR Platform
Birdog62 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/26/10
Posts: 450
This is a dumb question about building an AR. Is it the upper or lower that has to be registered? I'm wanting to try and build one just for the experience and was just wondering. Thanks in advance.
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#5579823 - 02/03/15 08:12 AM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: Birdog62]
KRoyal Online   sleepy
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/24/07
Posts: 13636
Loc: Sherman/North of Dallas
Stripped lower is the only part considered a fire arm.
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#5579826 - 02/03/15 08:13 AM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: KRoyal]
Birdog62 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/26/10
Posts: 450
Originally Posted By: KRoyal
Stripped lower is the only part considered a fire arm.


That's what I needed to know. Thank you for your reply.
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#5579830 - 02/03/15 08:14 AM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: Birdog62]
bside Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 06/10/14
Posts: 314
Loc: DFW
^^ also, there is no gun registration in TX

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#5579837 - 02/03/15 08:17 AM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: bside]
KRoyal Online   sleepy
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/24/07
Posts: 13636
Loc: Sherman/North of Dallas
Originally Posted By: bside
^^ also, there is no gun registration in TX


This is correct. If you buy through an FFL you have to NICS background check and the dealer keeps your form that you filled out on file, but it isn't actually registered. If you buy a stripped lower from an individual you don't have to do anything but take it home.
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#5579840 - 02/03/15 08:17 AM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: bside]
Birdog62 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/26/10
Posts: 450
Originally Posted By: bside
^^ also, there is no gun registration in TX


Yeah, poor choice of words on my part. up
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#5579889 - 02/03/15 08:44 AM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: Birdog62]
HuntTXhogs Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 05/04/10
Posts: 2972
Loc: North Ft Worth
Or an 80% lower requires no paperwork at all

There are some in polymer if you don't have heavy duty tools

I am not condoning 80% just clarifying since your new to ARs

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#5580317 - 02/03/15 01:27 PM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: HuntTXhogs]
Birdog62 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/26/10
Posts: 450
Originally Posted By: HuntTXhogs
Or an 80% lower requires no paperwork at all

There are some in polymer if you don't have heavy duty tools

I am not condoning 80% just clarifying since your new to ARs

To clarify; If I buy a lower housing from a manufacturer and a lower parts kit from a different manufacturer then get all the rest of the parts eg.upper, barrel, gas block, etc. I would have a working AR with no paperwork involved? What am I missing?
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#5580351 - 02/03/15 01:47 PM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: Birdog62]
Toxarch Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 03/09/11
Posts: 1680
Loc: Parker County
An 80% lower is an incomplete lower. You finish milling it (the last 20%) so you are the maker of the lower. You don't need an FFL for that.

Colt lowers use larger pins than all the others. That's about all you need to know for buying your lower and lower parts kit (LPK). Any LPK should fit any AR15 lower and fit any AR15 upper. Lines between the upper and lower might be a little off, but that's aesthetics and not a fit problem.
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#5580449 - 02/03/15 02:57 PM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: Birdog62]
bjones2571 Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1890
Loc: Houston, TX
Originally Posted By: Birdog62
Originally Posted By: HuntTXhogs
Or an 80% lower requires no paperwork at all

There are some in polymer if you don't have heavy duty tools

I am not condoning 80% just clarifying since your new to ARs

To clarify; If I buy a lower housing from a manufacturer and a lower parts kit from a different manufacturer then get all the rest of the parts eg.upper, barrel, gas block, etc. I would have a working AR with no paperwork involved? What am I missing?


No. If you buy a lower receiver (stripped or complete) from anyone other than an individual, i.e. you buy it from a manufacturer, online or local gun store) you complete the NICS form just like any other firearm. You buy a lower receiver from an individual, i.e. from the classifieds here, you do nothing, just like any other firearm.

The one odd ball is if you buy an 80% lower which requires you to mill out the various pin holes, magazine well, etc. Then you are the manufacturer, and no forms required. It does require an amount of tooling and know-how, however.

What may be tripping you up is terminology. Lowers are usually called either stripped or complete (ignoring 80% lowers for this discussion). Complete has the various pins, fire control group, grip, stock, etc. installed so that it is ready to slap an upper on and go to the range. A stripped lower is just the physical lower and you install the various pins, fire control group, grip, stock, etc.

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#5580453 - 02/03/15 02:58 PM Re: Newbie to AR Platform [Re: Birdog62]
Birdog62 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/26/10
Posts: 450
That makes sense. Thanks for clearing that up.
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