Monday, August 22, 2016

Mk18 Mod 0 clone

Have you ever bought or traded parts and just kept dumping them into your spare parts box, then one day, you realize that you have somehow amassed enough parts to assemble a complete rifle?  Well, that's what sort of happened here.  It's happened before where I've built shotguns out of spare parts, but this probably the first time I had enough parts laying around to assemble an AR....mostly.

So, my latest obsession has been the Mk18 Mod 0.  It's something I probably should have built a long time ago when I had almost the right parts, but at the time, all I wanted was free float, free float, free float.  The front triangle sight post was in my mind obsolete and to be discarded at the first possible chance.  Some will definitely argue this point, but there's a certain charm with the old school look and I'm sure it's still very functional.

Anyway, I had to butcher some parts from my Stag Arms/Colt Canada bastard child build that I did a few months ago:

http://93zj.blogspot.ca/2015/11/midwest-industries-mi-rail-with-m-lok.html

But the ball didn't really start rolling on this project until I did a little bit of parts trading the last few weeks.  I managed to get this Colt LE6920 upper in a trade for some optics I no longer used.  This would actually be my second LE6920 upper, but I flipped my first one a long time ago.











Another recent acquisition was this box of random parts.  There was some junk in there like a UTG butt stock and an unknown A2 grip.  But the potential treasure was the Knight's Armament rail system.  It was beat to hell as I got it off a buddy who used it on his C8 in A-Stan, but free is a good price and hard to say no to.  Also had a spare AR Stoner 10.5 in barrel that I would actually need in this build, but not for the clone itself.







Great looking barrel, looked well built, but the only problem is it did not have the channels cut for the taper pins from the front triangle sight post.  Being the noob that I was, I had in my mind that all barrels had these cut in them for this most standard of sight posts, and that all triangle sight posts were built to the exact same specs....boy did I learn this the hard way.



Anyway, not usable for my Mk18 Mod 0 clone build, I had the idea of transplanting this barrel to my Stag Arms/Colt Canada bastard child since that rifle utilized a low profile gas block and free float rail.


The rail was definitely an authentic KAC rail, but it had also see better days.  


There's a good amount of metal missing from the mounting points and I had my doubts it would work, but what the hell, may as well try.







So out came the taper pins out of the LE6920 upper, no easy task if you don't have the right tools, lol!



The donor 10.3in barrel from my Stag Arms upper.



Like a noob, I thought I could use the Colt LE6920 front triangle, but the taper pin channels were cut to a different spec than on the Stag Arms barrel, so I ended up digging out the front triangle from my Stag Arms upper (thank goodness I didn't toss it) and mated it back to the 10.3in barrel and threw it on to my LE6920 upper, capping it with the Colt A2 birdcage flash hider.  

I know, this isn't the best solution, but I'm going for "close enough" for my clone build, lol!


Timing the factory Colt barrel nut was a total pain in the butt but I managed to make it work,



And that's the AR Stoner 10.5in barrel on my Stag Arms upper.





Ready for the Midwest Industries free float upper.  I suppose I could start collecting parts for a Mk18 Mod 1 build, but I don't think I'm going to go there for a while.


I managed to work a trade for some spare parts for this LE6920 lower recently.  Not too bad, came with a Geissele SSA two stage trigger and a bunch of Magpul furniture.  Anyway, I slapped it all together, but it's still missing a ton of details.  What I can identify is the M16A1 grip, regular trigger guard, sling plate, scope and scope mount, KAC flash hider, authentic LMT rear sight, and of course the M16 lower, lo!  Probably missing a bunch of other stuff as well, but I'll have to figure that out later.




Going to use this beat up KAC hand guard until I can find a replacement at a reasonable price.  Boy these are pricey when they're not broken, lol!













Not the correct tac latch or sling place (or total lack there of)


Near as I can tell, I have the right stock.  LMT Gen 1, without the QD sling attachment,  I picked this up years ago for about $100 CAD but good luck finding one now.  The last I checked on Ebay, these are running damn near $300 USD. 


The LMT trademark has been faked before apparently so this alone is no guarantee of authenticity.



One of the key give-aways for what is deemed authentic is the color of the seals in the caps....apprently the real deal only used red colored o-rings, but I who knows.


I'm not sure if this surefire light is period correct, but it looks "close enough" for me.  Even left the bulb unmodified (most folks swap out the incandescent bulb for an LED unit). 


Calling this build done for now, and will add the right parts as they come along.  Well, at least the busted up KAC hand guard seems to fit and hasn't given me any indication that it would snap right off, lol!

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