I don't mean to offend. It's probably going to happen anyway.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Lego for Adults, and Lego for Kiddies

As some of you know, I spent a couple days this past weekend at The Redneck Engineer's place building a couple AR lowers. I find it infinitely entertaining and pleasing that over the course of maybe 20 hours work, we were able to take two raw forgings and turn them into functional firearms. I had never done any milling work before, so it was about half working, and half TRE patiently explaining what exactly was going on and what we were doing. He's a good teacher and a good machinist both.

Neither lower is perfect. Tolerances are a bit loose in some spots, and a bit tight in others. They will take a little bit of hand fitting to work, and a bit more to make them pretty, but all the same, I am thrilled with the result.

There's no better way to understand how something works than to build it yourself. There were various parts on the AR that I knew how to work and what they did, but the specific nature of how they did it was lost on me. No more. Over the next few months, (probably not till after the insanity of parts buying dies down) I will be turning this lower into a fully functioning firearm. This pleases me.

On that note, I am open to suggestions on how to build the thing. I am disinclined to spend tons of money on high end parts, and am thinking of more of a fun plinking rifle. I am hoping to get some suggestions as to which parts are good and which are lousy, etc. I am not a purist when it comes to ARs. I like irons, but would take a decent red dot or holographic if it was reasonably inexpensive. I don't want magnification though.

I think I may be hooked on the whole gun building thing. I have been exasperating my father since Saturday with links to different frames and parts kits and welders. I want to build an AK. I want to build a 1911. I want to build a pistol caliber carbine of some flavor or another. I want to build a Springfield 1903. I'm hooked on yet another expensive hobby.

I also wanted to take a moment to address this craziness: http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/04/01/lego-to-pull-anti-islamic-star-wars-toy-set-following-muslim-furor/ .

I'm sorry, but you don't get to tell other people to do anything just because you're offended. I personally don't see any reason to get offended over it. It's not terribly similar to Hagia Sophia apart from being a square building with a domed roof. It comes straight from the movie. And in any case, Hagia Sophia was originally a Christian cathedral. It's hardly the definitive piece of Muslim architecture.

And you know what? Even if it depicted Mohammed himself shooting off an AK in one hand and dragging a chained slave woman in the other, with Allahu Akbar stickers everywhere and generally as offensive as possible, the only real recourse is this. DON'T BUY IT. Boycott Lego. Ask other people to boycott. Just don't try to tell anyone what to do. They have every right to make Legos that look like whatever they want. And honestly, the Lego Ninjago and Legends of Chima have far more racially charged imagery than Jabba's palace. I doubt the turks give the slightest iota of care about that. It's not about being offensive, it's about offending THEM.

I see this same attitude all the time, and I'm just tired of it. All these whiny children with visions of totalitarianism trying to enforce their will on everyone else in the name of 'fairness' and 'political correctness' are just inane and stupid. If you're offended, go somewhere else. It's not anyone else's job to please you.

I've heard people criticize Lego over the decision to pull the set. I see both sides on that one. I'd prefer they stand firm and do what they believe is right, but it's not my company, not my reputation, and not my money. Companies have to pick their battles. I don't have the link handy, but it's the same thing with Magpul almost making the 'naughty' list of gun companies because they were too busy fighting the Colorado mag ban. Lego isn't doing anything actively in promotion of them. They just decided it wasn't worth fighting. We criticize the progressives for trying to tell other people how to spend their money. We need to be careful in return not to try to tell other people what battles to fight.


  1. I was glad to have you over.
    First thing you'll need is a lower parts kit.
    CopesDistributing has them for about 65 bucks. With that, you'll need a buttstock, either a collapsible one or an A2 style. I think the cheapie collapsible ones are about half the price of a complete A2 with buffer spring, buffer tube, and buffer.
    Once you have those parts, you have a complete lower. You can now either search for a complete upper, or build one from parts.
    FYI, there are lots of home made pistol caliber uppers out there that are far from difficult to build. :)
    You just need a barrel/barrel blank, some round tubing, a bolt (either machined, or from another gun like a Suomi), and some time.

  2. Oh, and by the way.....
    pics or it didn't happen =)


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