Can You Sell a Homebuilt Gun Without a Serial Number

posted Tuesday, June 23rd 2015 at 7:27 AM by

Completed 80% Lower Receivers

Looks like the BATFE updated their website, and in the process didn't forward any of the links from their old content to the new URL format, bad web development!

But I digress.

I wanted to take this as an opportunity to update my links, as well as expand on some of the topics discussed in my earlier post about the legalities of building your own firearms. Namely, can you sell a home built firearm without a serial number?

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922(r) Compliance Calculator

posted Friday, June 12th 2015 at 10:16 AM by

922(r) Compliance

There are a few 922(r) compliance worksheets floating around on the internet, most are really good but quite a few are dated, not functional, and as I discovered when I started my Galil build, inaccurate. I wanted to provide a more up to date resource, and here it is!

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  • Replying to Adam Konieska on 922(r) Compliance Calculator

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    Sunday, March 25th 2018 at 10:36 AM

    Hiya! I know this is kinda off topic nevertheless I'd figured I'd ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest writing a blog post or vice-versa? My site discusses a lot of the same topics as yours and I feel we could greatly benefit from each other. If you might be interested feel free to shoot me an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Superb blog by the way!

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Is it Cheaper to Buy or Build an AK47

posted Friday, March 13th 2015 at 9:56 AM by

Cost of Building an AK47

The topic of home-building AK47 rifles comes up every now and then on various firearms boards, which usually leads to questions about the tools involved and the price to build.

The great question, however, is it cheaper to build an AK47 or just buy one off the shelf? I've been home-building firearms for a few years and the answer is simple, it depends...

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  • Replying to Adam Konieska on Is it Cheaper to Buy or Build an AK47

  • choices
    Sunday, June 7th 2015 at 2:43 AM

    Great Job Adam!
    Thanks for a very detailed explanation of the
    comparative cost choices building an AK.

    • Replying to Choices

  • jay
    Monday, October 19th 2015 at 7:20 PM

    Thanks for doing this write-up. The parts kits are overpriced for what you're getting!

    • Replying to Jay

  • dns
    Monday, November 30th 2015 at 1:39 PM

    You didn't figure cost of your time. We build AK types to sell as a manufacturing FFL. We have all the tools for press builds you mentioned plus other specialty tools, jigs, kiln for heat treatment etc. And all the tools for custom finishing. To take the typical cut up AK parts kit in a bag to a fully finished ready to sell rifle has at least 30 man hours. I estimate that to be our average start to finish. There is no way we can sell rifles for the same or less than what it costs to buy. However there are people who want something different than what you can find in a store and will pay.

    • Replying to DNS

    • Adam Konieska
      Monday, November 30th 2015 at 6:30 PM

      Good point. The article was geared toward hobbyists. Typically they're more concerned with their own craftsmanship and personal satisfaction than they are with time.

      • Replying to AK

  • lance d.
    Lance D.
    Wednesday, March 9th 2016 at 9:52 AM

    First off, your costs to build your own ak are a joke! If a person has any mechanical ability he can figure out how to build the project without all of the way over priced tools on the market! Doesn't take a genius to build your own "toth" barrel install and removal tool with scrap metal readily available from scrap yards or job sights everywhere. Allthread you can buy or I can bring it home from work in construction. Rivets can be set by hand with a ball peen hammer and patience. You just have to be willing to cut and drill and file or whatever it takes to make your own tools. They don't have to be store bought and they don't have to be pretty, just have to work. When I looked up some of the build tools online I had to laugh at the prices, sorry but I'll make my own and save my money. Common sense and know-how can save you a ton of money if you're willing to get dirty, most people aren't.

    • Replying to Lance D.

    • gus a
      Gus A
      Tuesday, October 10th 2017 at 10:26 PM

      You aggressively attack the article, which clearly states exactly what you're saying;
      "Further, some folks with machine shop experience are able to fabricate their own jigs and tools (typically the riveting tools) and can reduce cost that way."
      The author provides a benchmark for cost comparison by clearly articulating the market values for tooling currently available to the general public.
      Mechanical competence in the wider community is extremely divergent. If someone is not confident enough to fabricate their own tools, they can still get involved by purchasing what they need.
      It's a great article which will help people get involved in the hobby. In the end that's what's going to keep the industry alive, lots of people getting involved.
      Given how gifted you are, you should spend a couple of hours and smack together a bunch of tooling from a bunch of scrap, photograph the process and write a blog of your own on how it's done. Now THAT would be useful, way more useful than slagging off people who are trying to help.

      • Replying to Gus A

  • greg
    Friday, May 6th 2016 at 11:46 PM

    Great article, thanks.

    • Replying to Greg


How to Zero the M16A1 Series Rifle

posted Sunday, September 14th 2014 at 6:56 PM by

How to Zero the M16A1

Now that I've got my M16A1 clone put together from the kit and my 80% lower, and the rear sight fixed, its time to take it to the range and get it sighted in. In order to do that I'll have to zero the sights. Finding an old copy of Army STP 21-1-SMCT from 1987 proved to be a bit difficult, so I've transcribed a copy here for future reference.

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Fixing an M16A1 Rear Sight

posted Thursday, September 11th 2014 at 11:23 AM by

M16A1 broken rear sight

So I took my recently finished M16A1 clone to the range to be zeroed, and I could not for the life of me get the group to move left or right. After a bit of searching, I discovered the rear sight drum was broken. Note the hairline crack in the photo.

Crap. Now what?

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Building Your Own Firearms

posted Thursday, August 14th 2014 at 1:00 PM by

80% AR15 Lower Receiver

A few folks have asked me about DIY firearms, like this beauty here. I'll share what I know, what it boils down to is that an individual can make their own firearms provided they are not made with the intent to sell and they are made in accordance with all other local, state, and federal laws.

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  • Replying to Adam Konieska on Building Your Own Firearms

  • tony lapatka
    Tony LaPatka
    Saturday, April 16th 2016 at 8:37 PM

    I might be an automaton but never a robot!!!
    Enjoyed talking to you on Friday. Thanks for the info. I'll be reading the FAQs at the BATFE website for the next several days.

    • Replying to Tony LaPatka


Suppressed Yugo M85 AK47

posted Wednesday, August 13th 2014 at 1:29 PM by

One of my favorite rifles also one of the ones I built in my basement. Yugoslavian AK47 (M85) in 5.56 with an AAC M4-2000 suppressor. I made it myself from a receiver flat in my machine shop. Lots of labor and engineering went into it. Probably a 50 hour project or so — lots more involved than building an AR.

Its so sexy looking wearing all black:

Suppressed Yugoslavian M85

(2$ bill for scale)

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  • Replying to Adam Konieska on Suppressed Yugo M85 AK47

  • toops
    Wednesday, August 13th 2014 at 5:55 PM

    Where's the 'like' button?

    • Replying to Toops

    • Adam Konieska
      Wednesday, August 13th 2014 at 8:38 PM

      I thought about adding a Facebook integration, but I didn't want to overload their servers with all the likes.

      • Replying to AK

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    Sunday, June 7th 2015 at 3:56 AM

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    • Replying to BOB