Guns have a habit of becoming famous—or infamous—for many reasons, such as brand name, exploits, capabilities, ease of procurement, and so on. The AR-15 is one of these famous guns, known mostly for its M-16 military application but also well known for its brand name and capabilities as a classic assault rifle.
Most people do not know that the AR-15 model, owned by Colt instead of its creator Armalite, was the foundation for the M-16 rifle so popular with the United States military. Instead, they focus on its uses by law enforcement and former law enforcement individuals and the love most gunsmiths have for the weapon.
The AR-15 is popular because it is accurate and reliable, and one of its selling features is a heightened degree of modularity. Since it is lightweight and trustworthy, it made a great choice for law enforcement and a popular one for everyone who enjoys a classic gun. However, it should be noted that the AR-15 is essentially illegal to own one for the average Joe without going through a lot of legal red tape.
Parts, Plans, and Blueprints for the AR-15
Like many other gun blueprints, there are dozens of websites that offer blueprints for AR-15 rifles. Many of these same websites offer parts and plans associated with the rifle, depending on the intended use of the gun and the knowledge and expertise of the buyer. A wide variety of army surplus stores sell parts associated with this gun, depending on local gun laws and the store’s inventory. For those searching for something in particular (such as a specific muzzle, cartridge, or charging handle), online search engines become invaluable.
Calibers and Bullet Specs for AR-15 Guns
An AR-15 rifle is not a one-size-fits-all style gun, but rather one that can have diverse capabilities, styles, and calibers. There are models that classify as pistols and others labeled rifles, depending on factors such as size, caliber, and bullet specifications. There is both metric and imperial information for each caliber, and the type of bullet will depend strongly on into which category the gun falls. Some of the most popular variants of the AR-15 include but are not limited to the following:
- .357 Sig (pistol)
- .45 Winchester Magnum (pistol)
- 10mm Auto (pistol)
- .17 Remington (rifle)
- .204 Ruger (rifle)
- .30 Carbine (rifle)
The vast majority of AR-15 weapons take either .223 or 5.56 bullets, depending on the model of the gun. It can be very dangerous to chamber the wrong bullet into any gun, so be very careful to ensure that the proper bullet is available for the rifle before attempting to chamber one. The results can be disastrous, including bodily harm, damage to the surroundings of the shooter, and irreparable damage to the gun. Bullets can usually be purchased at ammo retailers all over the United States, but due to popular demand, they can be somewhat hard to find these days. They can also be found via many online retailers for a reasonable price.
Noteworthy AR-15 Features
A few noteworthy features of the AR-15 make it more popular than other gun makes and models, many of which cannot be found in the majority of other weapons. One of the most popular (and elusive) qualities of this weapon is its modularity, or adaptability. It can be modified to hold a variety of accessories and attachments, from muzzles to scopes and many more. Typical iron sights are not a requirement either, instead adapting to a diverse assortment of optical aiming devices suited to the shooter/gun owner/gunsmith.
Since the weapon is both reliable and ergonomic, it quickly became a favorite for the military as a primary weapon for soldiers. Some of the models hold 10 rounds, but others hold up to 30 rounds of ammunition, and this diversity made the weapon flexible in terms of weight, in addition to the materials that make up the weapon being very lightweight as well. It resists corrosion tremendously well, which is another reason that so many gun enthusiasts choose it over less durable models.
Legal Information Related to AR-15 Ownership in the U.S.
It can be difficult for the average Joe in the United States to purchase an AR-15, not because they are illegal, but because there are so many regulations surrounding the sale and purchase of these weapons. For instance, collapsible stocks and bayonet lugs may be prohibited in some states, if not most, in the United States. Another note: some weapons that are perfectly legal in one part of the U.S. are illegal in another, so be very careful about transporting a gun across state lines.
California is very strict regarding guns, and they have tight restrictions that outlaw the AR-15 almost entirely aside from law enforcement and military applications.
Accessories may make the weapon legal or render it illegal as well, so when shopping for AR-15 blueprints, be sure to check the legality of accessories. The barrel size makes a key difference, as does the stock, and the receiver is a crucial part of the weapon that may mean the difference between having to register and not having to register the weapon. In California, the Roberti-Roos model is illegal regardless of accessories, but some other models are acceptable with some modifications.