80% Lower Receiver Info

What is an 80% receiver?

An 80% Receiver is a partially completed piece of material that requires special tooling and skills to be completed and considered a firearm. Unlike a firearm receiver it is not required to be transferred through a Federal Firearms Licensed holder (FFL).


A lot of questions have been raised about how our 80% AR-15 Lower Receivers can be considered non-firearms. We've received a determination letter from the ATF stating that the ATF does not view this as a firearm because to complete the receiver it requires specialized skills and tooling.

Do I need an FFL to make a firearm?

In a short answer, no. As long as you can legally own the firearm in the state, county and city you reside in you are allowed to manufacture a firearm for your own personal use. No serial number is required however it is suggested to engrave a serial number, model and manufacturer on your receiver in case it is lost or stolen.

All National Firearms Act (NFA) regulations apply to your firearm. You may create a short-barreled rifle out of your firearm via a BATFE (Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosive) Form 1 after BATFE approval.

Recommended Tools

Completing an 80% Lower Receiver can be accomplished using a variety of tooling and methods, the most common methods require using a manual mill or a drill press. Both manual mills and drill presses can be purchased off web sites like craigslist or ebay as well as from local tooling suppliers. Once you have the machine of your choice, end mills and drills will be required to complete the remaining operations.


There are many resources on the internet you can use to acquire help and information from the home build gunsmith community. Some of our recommended forums are the following: Tactical Machining Build it yourself forums. Our resource center includes information and advice to commonly asked questions as well as direct answers from us on any question you may have. Weapons Guild & Home Gunsmith - Weapons guild and home gun smith are two great communities of home builders who would be more than happy to help you in your 80% completion project.

Overview of AR-15 and AR-10 80% Receiver

80% AR-15 Lower Receiver

The 80% AR-15 Lower Receiver is the most commonly purchased 80% lower receiver in our inventory. The amount of parts available on the commercial market allow for an unlimited number of combinations and configurations for any gun enthusiast. Any military specification based commercial product for the AR-15 will work with our 80% AR-15 Lower Receiver.

The 80% AR-15 Lower Receiver is a great starting point for many calibers including, but are not limited to: .223-5.56mm, 6.8 SPC, 7.62x39mm, 5.45x39mm, 6.5 Grendel. .50 Beowulf, 9mm, .45 ACP.

.308 80% Lower Receiver

The TM-10 80% Lower Receiver is our newest addition to our 80% product family. The TM-10 is a .308 80% lower receiver similar to the AR-15, AR-10 and LR-308 platforms. The .308 uses the same fire control group and operations required by the TM-15.

The TM-10 lower receiver (.308) is compatible with DPMS upper receivers and DPMS .308 products. The stocks are the same for the .308 and the .223 as well as custom pistol grips.

Custom Engraving

Currently we do not offer custom engraving on our 80% Lower Receivers on orders less than 50 pieces. It is a service we wish to offer to every customer but currently isn't reasonable for us to keep up with. If you have an order of 50 or more pieces we will discuss pricing with you of adding a custom engraving.

Does the 80% Lower Receiver include instructions?

We do not currently offer instructions or directions on how to complete our 80% Lower receiver. However, our jig top plates include the necessary depths for each of the operations enabling you to finish the 80% Lower Receiver without explicit instructions. You are free to use our forum to ask questions and view other peoples tips and suggestions. There is currently a thread by VaderSpade that explains several parts of the 80% Lower Receiver finishing process.