Previously I established how there is the demand for a heavier barreled Larue PredatAR rifle. For someone starting new, the Larue Ultimate Upper would probably be the better choice as they could buy it what ever barrel they want. But that isn’t what I want.
I took inventory of what I had on hand:
16 Inch Larue Barrel with matching bolt carrier group (from the UU upper I had)
Magpul CTR stock
New A2 grip
Surefire Flash hider, and Surefire Muzzle Break. At the time I took this photo, I was unsure what I would use.
Geissele SSA trigger. My favorite trigger out there.
So, I needed a PredatAR upper. I had been looking for one for a while, but people tended to want to see the upper for about the same price you could pick up an entire rifle. After some time, I found a great deal on a donor rifle.
Let us start with the simple tweaks.
The PredatAR comes with these little proprietary grippy hand guard covers. I will start by removing all of them as I prefer them off.
With them off, you can see how there is a raised rib on the PredatAR handguard. This rib is what, to me, gives it a better profile for handling. Note how the threaded holes have helicoil style inserts. I am glad I am not the guy who has to install all those inserts.
Now to focus on the lower. I pulled off most of the parts. I was going to clean the inside of the trigger pocket but I found the previous owner had already done so.
I installed the SSA trigger (Later I decided I’d run a MBT in this Larue lower. I switched that out the following day).
I have this Arms Unlimited knockoff of a Norgon ambi-catch. Not only is the finish and exterior profile inferior to the Norgon, it also binds in a lower. I had thought that maybe the previous lower I had it in was out of spec, but when I found it was binding in the Larue lower, I also tried a Colt and it did not want to play nice with any of them. I think it might be because of how much cant there is in the body of the catch. Note how it tilts inwards instead of being perpendicular to the threaded shaft.
I was also disappointed to find the receiver extension was crooked. Sometime down the road, if I keep the Larue lower, I’ll replace that end plate with one with a QD socket and straighten the tube.
Throwing on the A2 grip and CTR gives the rifle ergonomics that better fit me.
The PredatAR has a chromed bolt carrier. I will use that carrier with the matching bolt for the barrel I am using. I’m going to sell off the old PredatAR barrel and parts. I’ll including the matching bolt with that barrel.
The handguard is held on to the upper by 4 bolts, with Torx heads.
This barrel nut is taken on and off by a 1 1/4 inch wrench. The barrel nut was very lightly torqued. Felt like I could have taken it off with out a wrench.
I decided I would use the newer PredatOBR/UU barrel nut when I reassembled this upper. The wrench for that style barrel nut is pictured on the right. I would end up regretting this choice.
I ended up installing the Surefire MB556K muzzle break. This has a history of use in both competition and combat. It has been tested and shown to reduce recoil up to 58%, and it double as a mount for the Surefire silencers I have.
I end up with a little heavier rifle, but not one unwieldy or awkward. This would be just as functional with a red dot for rapid fire up close as it would high magnification for shooting tight groups.
I look forward to putting it to good use.