No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

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91Eunozs
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No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by 91Eunozs » Sat Oct 17, 2020 2:09 am

Saw an article in a magazine on a ultralight (sub 4#) AR:

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...and my first reaction was “That’s just dumb”, the second was “Why?”

And, well, you can guess the third.

The longer I looked at it, the more I thought “I can do better than that without really trying.” So I started to look at what it would take to build a sub 4# AR with a working optic. And then the border-line OCD kicked in and I built a spreadsheet..then started making replacements as I found lighter substitutes that were still at least marginally practical.

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Lots of V7 parts (I get a discount) and even more bits from Smoke Composite...like this ones lightweight, but more standard siblings; the sub 5# Aereus in .223 and Aereus Rex in .308).

Haven’t ordered them yet (out of stock like pretty much everything firearm-related right now), but currently leaning towards a polymer receiver set with the steel and aluminum inserts from Kaiser:

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If I do, then this build will be dubbed “acutus plasticus”... I’m really curious how it would hold up after I trim the brass deflector and port door Hinge bosses off (and lose the port door of course), then sand down the grid of plastic nubs around the receivers and go back and stipple where I want/need grip to remove a few extra grams of weight:

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Even if I do go this polymer receiver route, at some point I’ll likely replace the receiver set with either the Lithium aluminum set from V7 or the Tennalum “Esoteric” set from Master of Arms...either will still keep this build under 4# but I need to save some more to move forward with either of those options...both are very $pendy pieces of kit.

Regardless, almost 100% sure this build will get another Faxon barrel; this time in 14.5# with an integrated muzzle brake to bring it out to 16” but almost an ounce lighter than a pinned/welded barrel/muzzle device combination:

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And I go back and forth between another titanium bolt carrier vs a full-retard aluminum carrier, but curious how aluminum will wear with a polymer receiver...pretty sure the bolt hole will go out of spec first (steel bolt vs aluminum carrier)...and that DSA aluminum carrier with the FN sand cuts at 3.7 ounces is ridiculously light:

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At any rate, we’re off to a good start, the Master of Arms 3D printed sintered titanium red dot ‘Rizer’ mount is actually lighter than claimed, even before I filed off the little locating nubs meant for a Vortex Venom red dot. It was a very close fit and I could have just opened up the holes on the Sig Romeo Zero a tiny bit, but the two mounting holes are perfectly lined up and this sight is so light the locating pins aren’t really needed; just the two steel mounting screws are overkill:

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And the Sig Romeo Zero is as light as claimed even with the battery and mounting screws included:

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...there’s even room in the weight budget for a rubber optic cover! :lol:

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Total weight for the optic and mount is just under 1 ounce...I’m already 0.031 ounces under budget! :clownshoes:

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Crappy off center picture, but the sight is actually more clear and useful than I expected:

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...don’t know if I’ll be able to use the ‘slot’ cut into the back of the micro red dot as a backup rear sight but I have a crazy idea to try to use Smoke Composite’s finger stop on top of the rail as a place to mount a rudimentary front sight post...we’ll see if I can make that work when we get there.

More to follow as parts become available (and as the budget allows).
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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by Zed Hunter » Sat Oct 17, 2020 9:04 am

Who makes the shoulder stock shown in the picture?

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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by 91Eunozs » Sat Oct 17, 2020 11:11 am

Smoke Composites. Same company I used for those other two builds linked above; one carbine, One rifle-length. Only I used the “heavier” versions with the bracing, then added in pads and sling mounts to boot:

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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by majorhavoc » Sat Oct 17, 2020 11:45 am

I'm still hung up on question #2: Why? I mean, I know "why". But really, why? :? :clownshoes:

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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by JeeperCreeper » Sat Oct 17, 2020 12:03 pm

I hear the receiver/stock one piece combo from the WWSD rifle is supposed to be pretty light considering it eliminates multiple components.

Not sure if you added it in as weight to compare to your build, seems like a good budget way to go
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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by boskone » Sat Oct 17, 2020 1:39 pm

JeeperCreeper wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 12:03 pm
I hear the receiver/stock one piece combo from the WWSD rifle is supposed to be pretty light considering it eliminates multiple components.

Not sure if you added it in as weight to compare to your build, seems like a good budget way to go
I'm kinda interested in that build, but don't have $1,700 sitting around. I may copy a few features of it, though, by grabbing nonadjustable stocks and assist-less uppers for my rifles. I've been considering some alterations anyway, notably fixed stocks to avoid beard-hair-pulling.

My 'field' rifle has a Magpul MOE forearm and bog-standard adjustable stock, and I'd like to get a slim free-float on it and lightweight fixed stock; maybe a folding stock adapter if I wanted it shorter for transport, but I kinda doubt it. My 'target' rifle has a Larue RAT and upper/forearm combo, both of which I feel are excessively heavy for their actual functionality; I may swap it to something in the veing of a Magpul PRS, an assist-less upper, and a free-float tube. The latter'll still be a beastly-heavy rifle compared to most ARs, because there's a lot of gravity trapped in that 22" barrel, but it'd be better I think.

I would buy one of the lowers, but two problems:
  • The one I'd be most interested in is the ambi, and it's $450.
  • I'd end up with an extra lower sitting around, and we all know how that turns out.

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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by JeeperCreeper » Sat Oct 17, 2020 1:57 pm

I thought the lowers were like $150. I guess I'm out of the loop
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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by 91Eunozs » Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:33 pm

These receivers are sold as a set... Reasonable at ~$250 for the set before “the crazy” as I’ve taken to calling 2020. Advertised at a still reasonable $342 now, but not in stock. The super light metal options mentioned above are more than double that price.

I looked at the even cheaper and lighter New Frontier lower with all the polymer parts (Hammer, trigger, Takedown pins, etc.), but don’t want to travel that far down this rabbit hole.
Last edited by 91Eunozs on Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:56 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by boskone » Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:51 pm

JeeperCreeper wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 1:57 pm
I thought the lowers were like $150. I guess I'm out of the loop
An empty regular lower is $100-150 (can't remember), the regular lower completed like $200, the ambi lower is AFAICT only available complete and is $450.

The latter is the only one I'd really be interested in.

I'd totally still buy at least the lower for a new build, but I think 2 lowers is sufficient for me.

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Re: No, really honey, last one...I promise: Aereus Lev

Post by emclean » Mon Oct 19, 2020 7:17 am

majorhavoc wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2020 11:45 am
I'm still hung up on question #2: Why? I mean, I know "why". But really, why? :? :clownshoes:
because he really wants to feel the full recoil of the mighty 5.56

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