What to build.... What to build?
It all started with a slight chuckle as I picked up the slightly odd-looking cartridge and it ended with a burst of laughter, beaming smile, and the instant knowledge that I needed one of my own! Shooting suppressed 300 Blackout AR-15 was hands down the most fun experience I have had behind a rifle. It was quiet enough I not only heard my buffer cycling for the first time but it was the loudest noise around me.
When I committed to set money aside for a new rifle I had many questions to mull over and infinite ideas of what I could build. As I researched products and builds I was overwhelmed and almost frozen by the vast amount of different options I could combine.I quickly realized I had to narrow down my research by thinking of the purpose this rifle would serve. The ultimate goal was to build a rifle that I could enjoy ringing steel, introducing new shooters, or even setting up on a bench and practicing at moderate range comfortably and cheaply. After narrowing the purpose I could start coming up with the plan and budgeting what all I would need for the build. A main issue to confront was the amount of money that would be added in tax stamps dependent on what type of rifle I wanted to build. I knew out of the gate it would be a base line of $200 as this rifle HAD to be suppressed and it would be money well spent! That led to the next question of what barrel length to choose and how the firearm would be registered. The experience I had shooting 300 blackout AR 15 with a 10.5” barrel was phenomenal and tempting to follow,however the legal grey area of a pistol braceand the $200 tax stamp of an SBR where both imperfect options. Ultimately the simple fact that I could build just a new 300 Blackout upper and swap it on to my current rifle lower won out on all account.
The Chosen Build
The broad strokes decided upon it was time to collect my parts and get to work.I opted for a sixteen inch pistol length barrel in a 1:8 twist. This would give me better pressures to cycle the low pressure cartridge; the added barrel length will help spin up and stabilize the heavier and slower subsonic loads I plan to be shooting. Moving further back down the rifleI chose Bootleg Inc’s fifteen inch CamLok handguard. Utilizing the many MLok attachment slots to fit on some great accessories. The Magpul Bipod to enjoy comfortable shooting behind a table or bench at the range or laying out in the desert waiting on ground squirrels. Just behind that the Magpul hand stop and rail covers give excellent security and feel when smacking as many steel targets as I can find in front of me. My choice in optic may have been a little optimistic for the real range available in 300 blackout but the Vortex Strike Eagle 1-6x has an absolutely beautiful clear image and very easy to use reticle.Giving the option of shooting up close with quick target acquisition as well as enough power to slow down and test how far you can reach out and touch something. All of this is secured to the Enhanced Upper Receiver by Bootleg Inc, shedding the weight of the forward assist and sporting billet designs paired with the strengths of the forging process.
This has become by far my favorite rifle to shoot!With how calm this round can be I plan to utilize it as my go to for new people wanting to experience the joy of sending rounds down range. I have not yet finalized what suppressor will cap off this build but am enjoying the process of testing to find that right fit. I know the 300 Blackout is not the most spectacular round on the market but I would challenge you to find one that is anywhere near as fun to shoot all day long! There are many great options to buy a full platform straight off the shelf. However putting the time into picking the best parts and learning to put them all together is incredibly satisfying and I highly recommend it!