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JP Full build vs Upper only


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I've been considering replacing my current 3 gun rifle with a JP for a few months now but am wondering if it is worth buying a complete rifle from them vs buying an upper and putting the lower together how I want it.  The JP triggers seem OK (I don't want a roller trigger), but I'd probably end up replacing it with something else since I am used to a lighter trigger.  I'd probably end up changing out the grip and stock as well so it seems silly to spend $600 on a complete lower I'd be reconfiguring completely.  Is there something I'm missing?

 

Also, is having the heat sink on the barrel worth the extra weight?

 

 

Edited by 3gunDMD
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I started out with a full build and now I only buy JP uppers. I wanted to change the stock, trigger, and controls. I have two lowers built out how I like them and just swap 3 JP uppers between them. I think you're spot on with paying $600 for something you'll change anyway. 

 

I took my heat sink off. I don't need it for the style of 3 gun I normally shoot. 

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36 minutes ago, Adamj said:

I started out with a full build and now I only buy JP uppers. I wanted to change the stock, trigger, and controls. I have two lowers built out how I like them and just swap 3 JP uppers between them. I think you're spot on with paying $600 for something you'll change anyway. 

 

I took my heat sink off. I don't need it for the style of 3 gun I normally shoot. 

Which barrel length do you prefer?

 

Did you notice any difference with the barrel heat sink vs without?

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Right now I go between 18" and 14.5". I like the 14.5 with a dot for bay matches and the 18 with a 1-6 when I'm shooting beyond 300 yards. You can easily shoot at distance with a shorter barrel I just prefer the big boy for longer shots. It comes down to personal preference and knowing your DOPE. 

 

I suppose the heat sink could help if you go from a 30 round burner array(s) to finishing the stage with longer shots. I will say yes, the handguard is not nearly as warm with the heatsink on. I have no doubt it works. I just haven't felt I needed enough to justify the weight. 

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30 minutes ago, Adamj said:

Right now I go between 18" and 14.5". I like the 14.5 with a dot for bay matches and the 18 with a 1-6 when I'm shooting beyond 300 yards. You can easily shoot at distance with a shorter barrel I just prefer the big boy for longer shots. It comes down to personal preference and knowing your DOPE. 

 

I suppose the heat sink could help if you go from a 30 round burner array(s) to finishing the stage with longer shots. I will say yes, the handguard is not nearly as warm with the heatsink on. I have no doubt it works. I just haven't felt I needed enough to justify the weight. 

Does the 18" shoot softer than the 14.5" that you notice?  

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5 hours ago, 3gunDMD said:

I've been considering replacing my current 3 gun rifle with a JP for a few months now but am wondering if it is worth buying a complete rifle from them vs buying an upper and putting the lower together how I want it.  The JP triggers seem OK (I don't want a roller trigger), but I'd probably end up replacing it with something else since I am used to a lighter trigger.  I'd probably end up changing out the grip and stock as well so it seems silly to spend $600 on a complete lower I'd be reconfiguring completely.  Is there something I'm missing?

 

Also, is having the heat sink on the barrel worth the extra weight?

 

 


The thermal dissipator is absolutely worth it. Racking up high round counts in a short time is hard on rifle barrels. Transferring heat out of the barrel, specifically the throat and chamber, is very useful for longevity and accuracy. 

18" rifles typically have less recoil than a comparably set up 14.5" rifle due to the extra mass and rifle length gas system in general. You can tune both to be exceptionally soft so the real question typically ends up being, "What type of match do you shoot?" If your matches are typical Texas with the majority of rifle points coming in the form of long range targets to 600 yards, the 18" rifle is far more stable and gets you better velocity for more forgiving shots at long range. If you are shooting Florida or Bay style matches inside of 100 yards then the 14.5" is a bit more nimble and easier to transition.  

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I have three JPs, 2/223-1/9mm and one .22.

 

One 223 and the .22 have transitioned to JP lowers.  I am so much happier.  My reliability factor has gone up to the level of my other JPs.  In fact I am in the process of picking up another JP lower because I have a lonely JP upper. There is probably nothing wrong with quality lowers by someone else.  I hate dicking with ARs-1911 No Problem.

 

I had one JP trigger tuned by a JP smith, it was light.  Great trigger! Hated russian ammo-one jam every mag.  Changed to Hyperfire--no problems. Brought three more Hyperfire triggers.  

 

As an RO in more than a couple of PCC matches, I observed JPs running consistently. Others no so much.  This is not a scientific statement, just an opinion. 

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2 hours ago, pjb45 said:

I have three JPs, 2/223-1/9mm and one .22.

 

One 223 and the .22 have transitioned to JP lowers.  I am so much happier.  My reliability factor has gone up to the level of my other JPs.  In fact I am in the process of picking up another JP lower because I have a lonely JP upper. There is probably nothing wrong with quality lowers by someone else.  I hate dicking with ARs-1911 No Problem.

 

I had one JP trigger tuned by a JP smith, it was light.  Great trigger! Hated russian ammo-one jam every mag.  Changed to Hyperfire--no problems. Brought three more Hyperfire triggers.  

 

As an RO in more than a couple of PCC matches, I observed JPs running consistently. Others no so much.  This is not a scientific statement, just an opinion. 

What reliability issues are you having with the rifles with the non-JP lowers?  I don't think I'd consider buying just a JP PCC upper without the lower since there are so many variations in AR9 lowers but since 223 lowers are more universal I'm really considering just buying the upper.  

 

Do you use the heat sinks on the 223's?

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What are the design advantages of the traditional JP forged upper and lower sets that is lacking on other quality alternatives? I know that buying a JP assures you of having a matching BCG, buffer and adjustable gas system that work well together but it's never been that hard to read the recommendations and a few threads on low mass carriers to see what other successful shooters have been using and simply ordering similar parts. You have to adjust the gas block anyway with any new rifle. 

 

The other thing is JP uses a quality barrel and installs it "tightly" using heat to expand the upper so it tightens as it cools. They probably lap the front of their receivers too. But beyond that, if the upper and lowers are in spec and all the parts are of good quality what makes it possible for them to shoot any better than any other $2000+ rifle? 

 

I definitely have several JP parts in my rifles but never saw where they necessarily made the very best of every possible individual components. Most everything they sell is going to be 9/10 but then again a matched Aero Precision Upper Lower can also be 9/10, be made in USA, and have a great warranty. Installed correctly neither set is going to wobble or have any issues but one will cost a heck of lot less. 

 

Sure a JP built rifle is going to be better than the newbie's first attempt. But after you've assembled a few ARs then you can build a match quality rifle pretty durn easy thanks to YouTube and, well, that it's easy. Start with a PSA level $500 build to work the kinks out then do better on the next one. Especially in today's climate you can probably make a nice profit lol.

Edited by Frankly
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12 hours ago, 3gunDMD said:

What reliability issues are you having with the rifles with the non-JP lowers?  I don't think I'd consider buying just a JP PCC upper without the lower since there are so many variations in AR9 lowers but since 223 lowers are more universal I'm really considering just buying the upper.  

 

Do you use the heat sinks on the 223's?

I use the heat sink in my 18 JP.  In AZ the guns get so hot just sitting in their cases many use gloves.  My 16 JP does not - but I don't shoot it as much as the 18 JP.

I had some reliability issues with another brand lower, whether it was the lower or the lower parts I have no idea. I have built three ARs and I prefer just paying the extra for a JP.  Probably more money than sense could describe my logic.  

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1 hour ago, pjb45 said:

I use the heat sink in my 18 JP.  In AZ the guns get so hot just sitting in their cases many use gloves.  My 16 JP does not - but I don't shoot it as much as the 18 JP.

I had some reliability issues with another brand lower, whether it was the lower or the lower parts I have no idea. I have built three ARs and I prefer just paying the extra for a JP.  Probably more money than sense could describe my logic.  

Why do you prefer the 18" over the 16"


 

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On 9/1/2020 at 9:04 AM, 3gunDMD said:

Why do you prefer the 18" over the 16"


 

We shoot at lot of targets pass 300 yards.  I feel more comfortable with the 18 at those ranges.  The 16" barrel is probably fine at longer ranges.

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2 hours ago, pjb45 said:

We shoot at lot of targets pass 300 yards.  I feel more comfortable with the 18 at those ranges.  The 16" barrel is probably fine at longer ranges.

Do you notice much difference in the recoil between the 18” and 16”? I currently use a 16” intermediate and I’m thinking about switching to an 18” w/rifle gas length system. 

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23 hours ago, farinx said:

Do you notice much difference in the recoil between the 18” and 16”? I currently use a 16” intermediate and I’m thinking about switching to an 18” w/rifle gas length system. 

I shoot a Beretta O/U for sporting clays and a Benelli in 3G.  I also have a 1903A(x) 30:06.  A Winchester 30:06 with a heavy Douglass air gauge barrel.

A 223/5.56 has minimal recoil.  Muzzle flip is usually what most people ask about and the comps on JPs take care of that.  You might add the silent recoil spring that JP offers. 

I have a group of friends that are fanatics about the comp/block/SRS and ammo.  They go out of their way to really tune their combinations.  I am either too inept or lazy for such activity. I am just a duffer.

Needless to say, I do not notice the difference. It is probably there but I do not notice it.

What I do notice is the swing for short transition between targets at short ranges.  Past 45 yards, no big deal.

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  • 1 month later...

To weigh in on the 16 vs. 18 question -

 

I have a 16” JP-15 and an 18” JP CTR-02.  Both rifles shoot better than me.  For accuracy, it would be hard to find a better barrel than the JP supermatch barrels.

Personally, I prefer the 18” gun.  Both can easily handle the occasional 500 yard shots we see locally here in the PA/WV/VA/OH area.  I just like a little heavier gun, it might help mitigate recoil a little better, it might be mental, but it works for me.

 

JP code: 68SS0717 will save you 5% on complete JP rifles and 10% on JP parts

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Have done the 18 to 16 switch a few years back.  Even for 400 yd+ shots, gimme the 16” every time.  Last build went from medium to ultralight barrel, and would never go back.  The majority of rifle shots are inside 300 anyway, so having a short/light rifle is huge. YMMV, but been there, done that.

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  • 1 month later...

Trying to find a common ground balance for patrol rifle and match rifle. Looking at doing a JP 14.5" gun. Torn between the SCR-11 and JP-15 with the new ambi lower. Is the SCR-11 that much tighter in tolerances? Is it significantly heavier? Or does the billet receiver set balance that out?

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On 11/11/2020 at 12:04 PM, Kevrend said:

Trying to find a common ground balance for patrol rifle and match rifle. Looking at doing a JP 14.5" gun. Torn between the SCR-11 and JP-15 with the new ambi lower. Is the SCR-11 that much tighter in tolerances? Is it significantly heavier? Or does the billet receiver set balance that out?

SCR is side charge so if you're a lefty (assuming from the ambi) I would go with the JP-15 and a Raptor charging handle. You don't gain anything from the SCR with the side charge meant for right handed shooters. 

I don't notice much weight difference in the billet vs forged uppers. Really it comes down to do you want the features or the nicer finish. 

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