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My 11 year old caught wind of dad building an AR completely from parts and pretty much took over the building from the start. We are having a great time with it and my 9 year old has now become very interested. The last few items we need to finish the build will be here tomorrow according to UPS tracking. Most likely we will finish the rifle Saturday. Ending this 7 month project. (yes took 7 months to get everything without over paying for anything)

My dilemma is I know he will want to be the first to shoot the rifle, he is very excited about shooting it. I am 100% confident in the work we have done on the rifle. It would just kill me to have some thing go wrong and have him get injured. Do I trust the work was done properly and the components we ordered were high quality and let him have the first shot, or do I take the first shot to make sure all is safe for him?
 

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You take it to the range without him knowing, shoot it to be sure it's safe and head back home. Then you take another "first" trip to the range with the rifle AND your son and let him be the "first" to shoot it. He never has to know different.
 

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You take it to the range without him knowing, shoot it to be sure it's safe and head back home. Then you take another "first" trip to the range with the rifle AND your son and let him be the "first" to shoot it. He never has to know different.
An excellent suggestion!!
 

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All will go well. Have faith.
 
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I would shoot it first. Explain the safety concern, I'm sure he'll understand.
 

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You could always have him go to the store with Mom and then you could just pop off a couple rounds in the back yard! :D

Of course you could just tell him it is your rifle, you paid for the parts and it is your responsibility to fire it first and make sure it's safe. Then he can fire it second. Then when he is old enough to buy and build his own he will have the responsibility to take the first shot.
 

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No matter how certain you are of your workmanship, it would be far better for the lad's feelings to be a bit bruised, than what
could possibly happen should a problem arise.
 

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It should be you to take the first shot. Explain to him that it is for safety concerns. There is an almost 100% chance nothing will happen but why take the chance. If he shoots with you he must know about safety and should understand. Plus it will give the both of you another reason to get another one, one for him
 

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If you're at all concerned I like the string idea. Otherwise take the first shot for safety reasons.
 

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I don't think you should sneak out and then lie to the kid - bad precedent.
Explain the safety issues, then beg, borrow, or buy a lead sled and take the first shot by remote control - then you can let him pull the string.

EDIT: I see Riverkilt beat me to it (that's what happens when you let new guys in, dagnabit!). But a lead sled is a great investment anyway.
 

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Geek out on it! Make a mount for the weapon to be test fired at the range, let him pull the string or push the switch or however you decide to pull the trigger remotely. Make the remote safety testing rig another father and son project. After you fire a few test rounds, take it off the rig, examine it carefully, then if it passes muster, let him hold it in his hands for the first actual firing.
 

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I'd let him take the first shots, the gun will be safe. His build, he's entitled to the first shot. Remember, only load three rounds in the mag., first go 'round.

Plus, your pride will swell with him, firing that first shot.
 

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Any kabooms that I have read about were caused by bad ammo. I think if you use quality ammo you should be fine whoever shoots the AR first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for all the advise, I am going to go with the string idea and let him pull the string, there is a rifle mount I can use at the range. And it will just be another layer of safety for both of us. After that he can take the the first shots.

rollin thunder - I always only load 1 round on any new gun and for any new shooter of all my guns, even the .22lr's, you just never know!
 

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I feel like a putz!
All I built with my oldest son was a model rocket.
But back then his mom was afraid when I left the machette in the garage overnight. (not kidding) The divorce would have been earlier if I had started to build an ASSAULT rifle.

You had some great father/son bonding time. Plus it shows him DYI. Too many kids think you have to buy everything assembled.
 

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I to think you should always be on up and up.You are teaching him how to deal with his son.I would inform him these are the rules on new builds and always will be for safety you will fire first 3 shots.then the next clip is his since he built it. kIDS RESPECT SIMPLE RULES If you set the presidence all issues will go away after hes done with the ist clip, and this will help you set other rules more important in the future thatr cant be broken. Whe I say the rule on this one is=== My kids know its in stone from then on .

jhp

good luck with the new Ar post pictures when done and put video of him shooting up for us.Then let him see the comments as you beam with pride thats your son
 

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Kinda like the man sipping the wine first to make sure its okay....

Another possibility would be to set it up at the range with a remote string to pull the trigger for the first shot to be sure you aren't at risk either...everybody is there for the first shot...maybe let him pull the string...
This makes a lot of sense for all involved and he gets to learn the value and need for caution around firearms.
 
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The last stage of any build is to fire several rounds to verify it is functioning properly. I think since this is his build, you have to check his work prior to that, and take him to the range to test fire from a led sled via a string. This will teach him about finishing a project without skipping steps.
 

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An AR is not rocket science. You have a bolt containing a firing pin/extractor, a completely enclosed chamber, and a buffer/spring/tube.

The head of the bolt is completely enclosed within the chamber and uses a locking lug to lock it in. If there is anything wrong the bolt will not close against the round.

Sometimes I think we tend to worry a little to much. If you bought him a new bike would you ride it first?

Search the net..... find out how many AR's blow up and then, if you find any, research why they blew up. I believe you will find your concern is unfounded.

Enjoy your son and your new rifle....

Don

P/S.... if you have not tried the AFG let me know, I found one in my spare parts pile.

Don
 
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