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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After collecting parts slowly over the last 6 months or so I finally got all of it together but the sights (on the way) so took it out to test fire and make sure everything would work at least.

Early pre XM16E1 sorta clone. I made concessions to help keep costs down.
Slick side upper

Nickel Boron bolt to replicate the Chrome bolt. The Chrome bolt costs more for some reason.

Nitrated 20 inch pencil profile barrel 1 in 9 twist Wanted the option to run heavier ammo if I wanted so didn't want to go 1 in 12.

3 prong flash hider (not duckbill)

Surplus USGI handguards but Brownells repro stock

Lower isn't accurate at all but I couldn't justify the cost of a period correct lower. It's an Aero lower and an Aero LPK.

Light and handy. I like it.

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Sights on and front sling swivel installed and GI surplus green web sling. Little reloading drill fun.

 

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Light and handy. I like it.
Like a lot of people (including 'yours truly' ;^), ARs generally tended to 'gain weight' over the years. Heavier barrels, heavier receivers, heavier furniture, quad-rails loaded with junk, etc., etc., etc. Getting your hands on a light-weight AR can be a revelation! My favorite is a 20" (like yours), built on a Cav Arms lower, that weighs just 6 pounds, without optics...
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Like a lot of people (including 'yours truly' ;^), ARs generally tended to 'gain weight' over the years. Heavier barrels, heavier receivers, heavier furniture, quad-rails loaded with junk, etc., etc., etc. Getting your hands on a light-weight AR can be a revelation! My favorite is a 20" (like yours), built on a Cav Arms lower, that weighs just 6 pounds, without optics...
I put my primary AR on a diet about a year ago. Went to a pencil profile barrel, lightweight free float handguard that doesn't have rails on it (just added what I needed to mount a light) and went to a lighter weight ACOG in the TA33. Took a lot of weight off.

The lightest one I've built so far was a 10.5in AR pistol that I didn't even bother with a brace on. It was just a pistol buffer tube. No backup sights, holosun red dot, and MOE handguards with nothing on them. Weight with a mag in it was 5 lbs 14oz. The biggest weight savings so far on any of them has been the move to a pencil profile barrel. Those heavier profiles have a lot of extra steel in them.
 

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The biggest weight savings so far on any of them has been the move to a pencil profile barrel. Those heavier profiles have a lot of extra steel in them.
Seems like a heavier barrel makes sense for a target rifle, or full auto, but I think a lot of ARs end up with heavy barrels simply because they're cheaper to make (less machining required). So, a 'pencil' barrel can save a bunch of weight, without affecting performance, for a lot of folks. But you can actually save a half ounce or an ounce, on a lot of other individual parts as well - again, without affecting performance. I've taken to weighing everything from pistol grips to flash suppressors, and it's amazing how many places you can save a little weight. And all of those ounces add up! If you take your time, watch for sales, and/or maybe buy a few used parts, you can get close to (or even under) 5 pounds, without it costing an arm or a leg...
 
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So you sort of built a Colt 604 early model reproduction.
 
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