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  • Need Opinions

    I have decent mechanical skills, build AR 15 rifles, fix, modify them and would like to graduate to making other firearms-related items, notably a 80% lower in a 100% receiver.

    So I am looking to make lowers, cut/thread barrels and perhaps try my hand at making a railed HG.

    I was looking at this machine seller

    The 80% lowers can be seen here

    Not looking to make lowers/barrels for sale, but simply for my own use.

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Hi.

    I'm not sure what you are asking. Are you wondering if Smithy makes machines that would be good to use for your stated goals?
    Hemi-proprietor,
    Esoteric Garage

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    • #3
      Well, yes, how up to the task are their machines as related to my stated goals?

      Any general opinion on the gear they sell or the customer service aspect?

      Just like anyone, I am trying to get into some basic machine work without breaking the bank, but I want something that won't struggle to keep up with what I aim to machine.

      I already have a garage full of handy things, but the wife would rather her car be in there, so the small footprint was a definite plus.

      Complete 80% lowers
      Cut/thread barrels
      Make my own railed handguards

      Make smaller items, i.e. flash hiders, maybe some (AR 15) bolts.

      If YOU had 1,000 - $2,000 to spend, what would YOU buy, or would you wait and save to buy something better?

      Thanks in advance.

      Comment


      • #4
        Not having a clue what you are trying to make, I can't help much.
        We do have a sub forum on gun smithing here. You might get batter answer there.
        if you have the skills a file and a hacksaw is all you need to make anything.
        Dave

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        • #5
          Smithy

          From what I've heard Smithy has useable equipment and good service. I would go with the separate lathe and mill rather than a combo set. That would take only a little more room than the combo and be much more desirable. I have no first hand experience with this brand.

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          • #6
            You might ask here,

            http://www.weaponsguild.com/forum/index.php


            .

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            • #7
              My advice would be to google the 3 in 1 machines, you should get a lot of reading. I can't count the amount of times this question has came up over the yrs. on various forums. Most will tell you the lathe part is not that bad, the mill not so good, and it is a pain to be changing setups ever little bit. Occasionally someone will show some very good work, and claim they are perfectly happy with theirs. In the end it is your choice.
              James

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              • #8
                I don't know much about AR-15's, and even less about combo machines. But I have threaded and chambered quite a few replacement barrels. The best luck I've had is with the barrel through the headstock on a fairly heavy lathe. What you don't want is chatter to get started, and since a chamber reamer is cutting along its entire length, it REALLY is prone to start chattering. So spiral fluted reamers, working with the chamber up close to the headstock, on a nice sturdy lathe, are all good things (in my book)
                I'm here hoping to advancify my smartitude.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dewat
                  Sounds good, but WTF is with the registration feature?

                  You did not answer the verification questions correctly.

                  Builders help Builders
                  ideas become reality

                  They are the only two mottos and the graphic is letters, DUH!

                  Some boards are a PITA to register.

                  I had to send an email after two weeks on this one to get activated.

                  You'd think I was getting access to NORAD launch codes.

                  I'll try from home later . . . can't comprehend what the issue is.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by gizmo2
                    I don't know much about AR-15's, and even less about combo machines. But I have threaded and chambered quite a few replacement barrels. The best luck I've had is with the barrel through the headstock on a fairly heavy lathe. What you don't want is chatter to get started, and since a chamber reamer is cutting along its entire length, it REALLY is prone to start chattering. So spiral fluted reamers, working with the chamber up close to the headstock, on a nice sturdy lathe, are all good things (in my book)
                    Good advice. I knew nada about AR 15s in 2007, in 2012, I know nothing about machining, in 1965 I was just learning to tie my shoes. Life - learning, for me anyway.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      For finishing an 80% receiver you only need a drill press minimum. For threading/chambering barrels you really want a much larger lathe than the Smithys. You can easily purchase a used one for the price of a Smithy, but do your research on inspecting used lathes. Here's some good info:

                      http://www.mermac.com/advicenew.html

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                      • #12
                        I'd advise against a combo & buy a 13x40 lathe & a good used bridgeport mill. I'd look for quality used American machines but Grizzly makes a "gunsmith" lathe. You can start with anything & upgrade but if you can get what you need now it makes it much easier.
                        "Let me recommend the best medicine in the
                        world: a long journey, at a mild season, through a pleasant
                        country, in easy stages."
                        ~ James Madison

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Excellent Advice

                          Originally posted by flylo
                          I'd advise against a combo & buy a 13x40 lathe & a good used bridgeport mill. I'd look for quality used American machines but Grizzly makes a "gunsmith" lathe. You can start with anything & upgrade but if you can get what you need now it makes it much easier.
                          I agree 100% with above statement. As they say, "A combo machine is one which will do everything but not do it well." A combo may satisfy you in the begining but as your skills grow, you will soon be machine limited in what you can do. There are several used machine tool place in Balto. which you could get good used machines. If not sure of what to look for in a use machine, take a machinist friend with you.

                          If you've never built an AR15 before, I'd suggest getting an already 100% completed receiver and build on that. That way you will become familiar with how the weapon goes together and how critical some parts are. With an 80% receiver, a single hole drilled a few thousands off will cause all kinds of problems which will take a LOT of time to discover. I speak from experience.
                          Bill

                          Being ROAD KILL on the Information Super Highway and Electronically Challenged really SUCKS!!

                          Every problem can be solved through the proper application of explosives, duct tape, teflon, WD-40, or any combo of the aforementioned items.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by dewat
                            Yeah, no idea what is up with the registration feature . . . just won't take the 3 word motto and I tried both that are possibly it.

                            Any ideas?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              There's a "crest" up at the top of the page. A logo type of thing. The FBI has one, too. On the FBI crest, there's a banner across it that says "Fidelity Integrity Bravery". Look for something like that on the Weapons Guild page. The motto is right there on the crest, and I just used it to register.

                              -M
                              The curse of having precise measuring tools is being able to actually see how imperfect everything is.

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