AR15 Upper Receiver Group Series – Part 3

This is the third and final installment of the AR15 Upper Receiver Group build series. In Part 1 we looked at parts, tools, and some other considerations. In Part 2 I documented the assembly process. Finally we’ll look at whether or not I assembled a working rifle and review some lessons learned.

11.5" AR15

The author and the 11.5″ AR15 at a practice

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AR15 Upper Receiver Group Series – Part 2

Welcome to Part 2 of the 3 part series in which I show you how I assembled a new Upper Receiver Group for my AR15. In Part 1 we looked at design considerations, legal issues, and tools. This article will cover the assembly process. Seasoned AR15 operators will know that the AR is essentially Barbie for men. AR owners can accessorize and modify their rifle with minimal training or tools. As I’m demonstrating, even the untrained can assemble the parts to build a working rifle. The AR15 is one of the few platforms where many manufacturers work within a specification and build mostly interchangeable parts. Continue reading

AR15 Upper Receiver Group Series – Part 1

Welcome to Part 1 of the 3 part series in which I show you how I assembled a new Upper Receiver Group for my AR15. The series will examine the tools used, the design choices I made, the build process, and my thoughts on the project.


I’m not a gunsmith, professional gun fighter, or all that mechanically inclined. I’m your average Canadian by day and an avid shooter and firearms enthusiast in my spare time.

AR15 Parts

Most of the parts laid out

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Tactical Shotgun

Remington 870 Tactical

Remington 870 Tactical

I call shotgun! The shotgun has been in use for well over 150 years, that shows the versatility of the design. Of course the shotguns of today don’t share too many common elements with their 1850’s contemporaries, the coach guns of the Old West. Much like the Glock of today has a little, but not much in common with the Colt 1851 Navy. Shotguns are still are still smooth bore and measured in gauges. That’s about where the similarity ends. There are so many shotgun designs available today; side by side and over under break actions, pump action, lever action, bolt action, semi-auto. What I want to examine is building a “good enough” tactical shotgun for 3 Gun and IPSC shotgun matches. It could probably be used to hunt with, or shot clays, but this shotgun will excel at a tactical roll. This would also make a stellar home defense gun, but of course the legal issues of using a firearm for self defense in Canada make it a complex legal issue if you ever brought it to bear. Continue reading

March Update

Howdy Gunslingers, I have some gear news and updates for March. The big update is I have adequate gear for CQB and Service Rifle events for this season. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to attend any Service Rifle Events but I’m signed up for all but 1 CQB event. The one match I’ll miss is the same day as my club’s big annual 3 Gun Match. I’ve finished playing with the Tactical Tailor MAV and have added some items to the HSGI Sure-Grip Belt. My original impression of the MAV and HSGI belt can be found here. I received a new scope for my AR15. I’ve selected a Vortex Viper PST 1-4×24 TMCQ MRAD for this year’s CQB season. The Viper is replacing the Vortex SPARC on my 16″ Stag for now and will be mounted on the new CQB upper that I’ll be putting together this month. This month I should be able to assemble the parts I’ve been ordering to build an new upper for my AR15. I’ve gotten confirmation that the 11″ rail I ordered from Samson Manufacturing before SHOT show should ship next week. From Canadian dealers I have already received;

From Brownells I’ve gotten;

I’ll be re-purposing a Stag Bolt Carrier Group and using the lower from my 16″ Stag Model 2. I received parts I ordered for my Remington 870 Tactical and am putting together my take on a tactical shotgun. A post on this topic is now available.

Remington R1 Enhanced Unboxing

After going through the disaster of getting the plunger tube on my old 1911 replaced under warranty I decided to sell that pistol and replace it with something a little better. My original plan was, and still is to go to an STI Lawman, but since there is a minimum 6 month lead time and I need a 1911 now I opted to purchase the Remington R1 Enhanced. Unboxing and initial impressions after the jump.

Left side of Remington R1 Enhanced

Left side of Remington R1 Enhanced. Extended magazine release, bevel in grip for mag release, extended safety, front strap serations

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New CQB Gear

Fedex dropped of a package for me yesterday from DSTactical. I placed an order with DSTactical during their boxing day sale and while they were our of stock on some of my items they were good enough to ship my new load bearing nylon gear.

I took up Close Quarters Battle or CQB which is organised as a Service Conditions event through the Ontario Rifle Association late last season. I had been using a Condor Vest as my load bearing equipment for CQB, 3 gun, and Tactical matches. This season I’ve decided to become more involved in CQB and plan to make most if not all of the matches at CFB Borden and I may be able to make a few of the clinics. Continue reading