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  backbencher

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Posted: March 16 2013 at 10:50pm | IP Logged Quote backbencher

If we fill the empty spaces w/ epoxy, and superglue the parts together, might we build an AR lower out of Legos?  Looking for a thumbhole stock the lower can be epoxied to, which would lessen the strain on the buffer tube mount (one of the issues w/ the famous wooden lower).

Bell & Carlson have apparently discontinued their thumbhole stock, & I've not yet found a replacement.  I just realized Remington sells their ARs w/ thumbhole stocks, so perhaps I can find someone who sells those.
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  Mech warrior

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Posted: March 16 2013 at 11:06pm | IP Logged Quote Mech warrior

That would be awesome! Can you imagine if everyone was running out and buying legos to make receivers from them? It might actually work with jb weld and drilling and inserting rods.
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  northumbrian

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Posted: March 17 2013 at 2:34am | IP Logged Quote northumbrian

Cool, as I have yet to get my machine shop wire up, and the French are taking their time with processing my gun licenses.

I think I'll have to go and raid my sons lego box.
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  backbencher

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Posted: March 17 2013 at 11:59am | IP Logged Quote backbencher

Anyone know an alternate source of thumbhole stocks?  I tried looking at a FAL lower receiver to reinforce the lower, but it ends up looking like a California AR, and we still have the weak buffer tube mount problem.  Bell & Carlson discontinued their thumbhole, & I can't find anyone supplying Remington's.

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Posted: March 22 2013 at 12:09am | IP Logged Quote backbencher

Cross post from: 

http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_3_4/607340_Legos_.html

...I was thinking 7.62x39 w/ AK mags for the win, but if we can get it to work, we have an infinitely variable length AR lower on hand, and you can build mags for whatever caliber you wish out of Legos...

This is crowdsourcing design, folks. If you're reading, I need volunteers to A) find us an in production thumbhole AR stock like this:

http://www.outdoorsupplies.co.nz/Anderson_AM15.html

or B) design, build, & send off to http://www.gunstockduplicating.com/ a thumbhole AR stock to get a price quote for single duplicates.

or C) acquire a thumbhole stock as above, or the Bell & Carlson/Remington, send off to the folks above, or a similar outfit, & get a price quote for single duplicates.

or D) build a plastic building block thumbhole stock w/ the following features:
- 1 - it will remove from a conventional AR lower w/o damaging the safety spring.
- 2 - a carbine length (milspec or commercial) buffer tube is fully supported on at least 180 degrees of the radius, and the locking lug strip is fully enclosed on at least two sides. (side & bottom, or both sides)
- 3 - a full length buffer tube is fully supported on @ least 180 degrees of the radius, excepting that portion which overlaps the carbine length locking lug strip space, and the rear of the buffer tube rests on the inside rear of the stock.
- 4 - both buffer tubes types MUST be accommodated, ie, the stock design must fit both types of buffer tubes, & both sizes of carbine tubes.
- 5 - the front of the stock as nearly possible enclose the rear of the AR lower, and as much as possible, supports that structure.
- 6 - the method of building shall be buttons or bottoms are exposed on the butt of the stock; the top, sides, & bottom of the stock shall only display seams between bricks.
- 7 - the stock shall have at least two different manufacturers of bricks in the structure (Lego, K'nex, etc), and the building picture instructions will clearly indicate the different manufacturer blocks used.
- 8- if behind enemy lines in California, New York, etc, the thumbhole requirement is dropped.
- 9 - it shall be accompanied by CLEAR pictorial instructions, with special attention paid to # 7, above.
- 10 - it shall be shot for a 5 round group, glued or unglued, with video, load data, and pictures of measured group.

This will end up under the GPL, or similar, so don't expect to make any money off this - but you will introduce a lot of new folks to shooting. Please specify which project you are volunteering to work on. Time to put your money where your mouth is, gentlemen.
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  Mech warrior

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Posted: March 22 2013 at 1:27am | IP Logged Quote Mech warrior

Why not eliminate the buffer tube? Or use an alternate method to tame the recoil? in a piston set up you could mount a spring around the piston to act as the recoil spring. It would be a lot less strain on the buffer mount then.
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  backbencher

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Posted: March 22 2013 at 8:56pm | IP Logged Quote backbencher

MW, yes, it certainly has already been done in AR uppers, going back to before the AWB.  However, all of those uppers are proprietary.  I hope to crowdsource design a substitute standard lower that takes plentiful standard AR uppers w/o modification.

Want to go on a trip?  Traveling through a ban state?  Mail your upper - and assemble your lower in a hotel room when you get there.

There are some other advantages as well.  Right now, given the paucity of thumbhole stocks in production, we're starting w// a thumbhole stock design.  That will have immediate benefits in NZ, and, as a building brick thumbhole stock design is easily modified, will have advantages in California & New York.
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  bob138

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Posted: March 29 2013 at 10:10am | IP Logged Quote bob138

New to the forums, sorry for not doing an intro thread first but this idea has me very excited.

Legos are made of ABS so standard ABS cement (black stuff in hardware store) would be perfect.

The thin legos may be ideal due to minimal internal space when stacked.  Add a little glue and it would basically be solid.

I'll raid the step-son's collection tonight and play around.  I found dimensions online so I can match them up against a standard AR lower.



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  Mech warrior

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Posted: March 30 2013 at 12:13am | IP Logged Quote Mech warrior

Glad to have you aboard Bob! This idea may come in handy for future clandestine operations!
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  backbencher

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Posted: March 31 2013 at 4:45pm | IP Logged Quote backbencher

Bob,

Thanks for the help.  Because of the buffer tube stress, we really need a thumbhole stock first, in order to reinforce (and correctly position) the buffer tube.

Unless you want to build up a .22" LR lower 1st - Colt is promising they will help us with the magwell, in the form of the LE 901 magwell adapter they've not yet produced yet.

If you are fooling around w/ a lower, I would suggest building it from the back forward, in order to channel the compression stresses.  And I also suggest not building it entirely out of Legos - we should throw a few MegaBlocks or K'nect in there for good measure - don't want to get sued by angry Danish do-gooders.
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  bob138

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Posted: March 31 2013 at 6:28pm | IP Logged Quote bob138

backbencher wrote:
Bob,

Thanks for the help.  Because of the buffer tube stress, we really need a thumbhole stock first, in order to reinforce (and correctly position) the buffer tube.

Unless you want to build up a .22" LR lower 1st - Colt is promising they will help us with the magwell, in the form of the LE 901 magwell adapter they've not yet produced yet.

If you are fooling around w/ a lower, I would suggest building it from the back forward, in order to channel the compression stresses.  And I also suggest not building it entirely out of Legos - we should throw a few MegaBlocks or K'nect in there for good measure - don't want to get sued by angry Danish do-gooders.


Thanks for the welcomes.  This place reminds me a lot of customfighters.com, another forum that embraces that idea of "why not, let's give it a try" instead of other forums.

I'm definitely thinking a 22lr lower as the first test.  My stepson would be bouncing off the walls to own a lego lower, and actually shoot it.

For the buffer tube, I was thinking of a bracket that could ride on both sides of the lower that you can pin through that holds the buffer tube, spring, buffer, and stock.  The image is a rough diagram.  I can do a better one if it's so bad that it doesn't make sense.  Basically it's a threaded tube to thread the buffer into that has an "L" bracket on each side that runs the length of the lower so that you can pin through it twice.  Or a shorter "L" bracket that is bolted to the lower and has the rear takedown pin through it.

BTW from what I read, the 3d printed lowers that actually worked were ABS as well.  So that's promising.

Bob
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Posted: April 01 2013 at 12:13am | IP Logged Quote backbencher

Bob, if you're wanting to do a .22" LR upper 1st, there's no need for the buffer tube.  The .22"LR uppers don't use the buffer - they cycle within the existing bolt carrier space of the upper receiver.

We'll call your effort E - I would suggest ver E.1 not have a mag well.  Until the Colt 901 AR mag adapter is released, we're going to a lot of trouble to build a mag well when all we have to do is use Colt's.  Also, be sure to block in the area behind the safety - we're not designing this to circumvent the '86 ban.

As soon as I have time - and a rough sketch of the design, I will embark on D (thumbhole stock) by ordering parts.

As a reminder, this design will be released to the general public in some form - I've already started talking to the lawyers : )

I will also urge you to buy some cheap Lego-compatible kits from Wal-Mart - K'nect, MegaBlock, etc, and include some of those blocks in your build.

ABS cement is sounding like the best option for glue @ the moment.

The buffer tube connector sounds very interesting - can it be done with simple tools?  Ie, screwdriver, wrench, not a drill?  It does us no good to design a $35 plastic brick set that needs a $300 mill.  Your picture has not yet appeared w/ your post.

I will IM you w/ my email - please drop me a line & let's exchange bona fides.
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Posted: April 01 2013 at 12:27am | IP Logged Quote backbencher

922 r compliance?  We're importing materials to build our lower - does that count against us, for example, when installing a Turk .410" shotgun upper?  Or, since the lower was assembled in the US, are we good?
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Posted: April 01 2013 at 11:45pm | IP Logged Quote Mech warrior

If the lower is considered the receiver, and it is assembled here, it is US Made!
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Measure, think about it, measure again, think about it some more, measure again, then cut......."Oh S***!!!!"

"Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened." Billy Gram

"If my calculations are correct......when this baby hits 88mph, your gonna see some serious sh*t!"
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Posted: April 02 2013 at 12:43am | IP Logged Quote backbencher

As we're following the 3D printed lower, this will be the 2nd gun in history that you have to ask your kids for help to assemble it.
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Posted: April 03 2013 at 10:23pm | IP Logged Quote backbencher

Bob has graciously drawn our first sketch, showing a build from the side plan:


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  bob138

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Posted: April 08 2013 at 7:02am | IP Logged Quote bob138

I ordered the legos to build a 22lr only lower.  $15 worth of legos shipped from Badlove's Bricks over on bricklink.com.

I will probably still need some odds and ends.

I'm going to be using a drill press to drill the holes and a hand file to make the adjustments to the magwell / FCG well.

Seeing as I own a 22lr conversion kit I can stress test the lower as soon as I can get it built so I figure that is a worthwhile starting point.  I'd rather find out early that the legos can't handle the stress of an upper pulling on the takedown pins, or of the FCG spring tensions.

Another thought I had was that seeing as 80% lowers are legal to buy / sell without a license then how much of the machining could be done to the legos and reinforcement parts to make a kit for others?  I'm sure we could get away with making some internal FCG well plates with holes pre-drilled to reinforce that area. Maybe something similar for the front and rear takedown pins.   Then you can use the reinforcement plates as drill templates to hand drill the rest of the holes.  Fit, check finish, and glue it together yourself.

Bob
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Posted: April 09 2013 at 10:41am | IP Logged Quote backbencher

Don't forget we can make the walls thicker than a stock lower, except at the safety, in order to reinforce it.

I'm just guessing here, but I think BATFE is always going to make people drill their own holes.  That's why I'm hoping in the long run we can figure out how to correctly place the blocks so the holes are already in the right place when you build it to the plan.

Now, if we could figure out how to use pre-drilled plates from another source - a door strikeplate, for example - then you have your reinforcement w/out having to drill anything @ all.

The only pins that have to protrude are the safety & the upper pins; we can use existing AR pins for the rest, & enclose them inside the structure, or we could use ordinary nuts & bolts, enclosed or bolt them down externally.

Bob, jumping the gun here, have you considered the magazine release or do we need to build building block magazines as well?  : )
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Posted: April 11 2013 at 1:00pm | IP Logged Quote bob138

I currently have a square hole in the wall that lines up with the magazine catch slot properly.  I'm hoping to solve that when I can get in all the legos and build up the mag well.

Lego makes a 1x1 plate that is just a little ramp.  I'm hoping that will work with a bit of filing but until I get the mag well profiled properly it's hard to be 100% sure.

I ordered all the lower parts I need to get testing.  I looked at the safety and seeing as it's just a rod with a notch in it I figured I can make one that works for this application easy enough.

if this works out for the 22 conversion that I have I'll prob set up a dedicated 22 upper for it.  I found a place that sells 4" 22 barrels that looks like they'd be perfect, stripped flattop and a cheap red-dot or sights.  It'll be a funny little plinker all for around $250

Bob
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Posted: April 11 2013 at 5:31pm | IP Logged Quote gww250

This sounds like a great project but in my personal opinion it might be falling into the same trap as other 'alternative' gun types that try to copy the AR15. There is no reason to attempt to copy the 'appearance' of an AR15 in order to use AR15 parts and design concepts. If you take another look at your objective you may find that you have more options than you first realize once taken past the 'appearance' of the parent gun.

If you look at some of the composite AR15's that have been made in the past you'll see that they deviated considerably from the AR15 specs but still performed very well.

 

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