Back around Hurricane Irma I got thinking about what I would get if I were starting my firearm collection from scratch. I still have an unfinished article based off my musing I might post someday.
I’ve wanted a light weight .308 semi auto with a long handguard for a while now. I really like the Colt 901 and would love to have one with a long handguard, but Colt doesn’t offer that in the US, so I went with Larue Tactical.
Larue Tactical offers what they a call an Ultimate Upper kit. This is a somewhat customization kit that including everything necessary for a functional AR minus the serialized lower receiver. These kits are a great deal for the money, but they tend to have a very long lead time so don’t get one if you are impatient. If you buy one of their upper kits, you can also order a lower.
I place an order from LaRue on 6/21.
I held off for quite a while as the large frame Larue rifles are Keymod and I’d much prefer MLOK. But after thinking about it I realized that I am just going to mount a QD mount for a sling swivel and a couple of rail sections, and never take them off. For me, in the big picture, it doesn’t really matter which system it is.
The upper kit arrived on 8/10.
It is a nicely packed up kit of everything for a rifle except for a lower.
There is the option to purchase a couple more of Larue mags at a discount when you buy one of their UU kits. These are mags are well made and are designed to allow for a little longer overall length on the rounds in the mag over other brands like the Magpul P-Mags.
I also purchased a Surefire Warcomp. It reduces recoil but is not as blasty or loud as a proper muzzle break. It will reduce muzzle flash more than a muzzle break, but less than a dedicated flash hider. The other main benefit is the ability to mount my Surefire silencer.
I wrote a little bit about the Larue RAT stock here.
I decided to go with a light weight profile barrel, the same as on the PredatAR rifles. The barrel with gas block and gas tube weights 2 lbs 5.6oz. I choose a light weight barrel as I know I won’t be doing high volume fire through this gun, and I do know that Larue makes accurate barrels. The 308 rifles have plenty of weight in other areas, so I think this will be a good compromise. Worse case scenario, the gun can be re-barreled, but I doubt that will be an issue.
To put it in perspective, the Proof Research lightweight barrel is advertised to be 2 pounds 3 oz at $940. I don’t think 3ish ounces is worth that premium.
Barrel is marked Rearden Steel. That’s for those of you who get the reference.
The gasblock is keyed the barrel for alignment.
Three setscrews hold the gas block in place. Flat bottomed holes are cut in the barrel for these set screws. I used Rockset to help secure them.
The match two stage trigger and pistol grip that comes with the kit is installed on a dry fire trainer so you can test the trigger as you wait for a lower.
I have no idea how much longer I am going to have to wait for the matching Larue lower I ordered for this kit, but I will write about it when I get it.