Best AR-10/.308 Lower Receiver: 2019 Buying Guide & Reviews

NATO BATTLE ArmaLite (AR) rifles are much loved as they are excellent in performance and offer excellent customization options. You can enhance performance by paying attention to the lower receiver.

It plays a vital role in assembling components including magazines, stocks, and barrels. Moreover, the right lower receiver can also improve grip and control.

You will find three kinds of lower receivers on the market:

  • 80% assembled.
  • Billet.
  • Forged.

Let’s dive deeper and look at some of the best AR-10 lower receivers.

Best AR-10 Lower Receiver: Product Review

Product Name

Style

Construction Material

Aero Precision 308 AR M5

Forged

Aluminium

James Madison 80% Lower Receiver

80% Assembled

Polymer80

Black Rain Ordnance Stripped

Billet

Aluminium

Mega Arms Maten Billet

Billet

Aluminium

Cross Machine Billet Receivers

Billet

Aluminium

Matrix Arms 80% Forged

Forged

Aluminium

1. Aero Precision 308 AR M5 (Lower)

Aero Precision 308 AR M5 (Lower)

Aero Precision 308 AR M5 is designed to work with both DPMS and AR-10 flawlessly which is why it is one of the best 308 lower receivers. It accommodates the magazine and blends well with the upper receiver as well.

There’s a .308 Winchester cartridge inside the chamber which is commonly found in most Armalite AR10 lower receivers.

Features

  • Integrated trigger guard.
  • Flared and polished magwell.
  • Accepts PMAG.
  • No need for roll pins.
  • Forged style lower receiver.

This forged style lower receiver is as strong as they come. It accommodates a much longer and larger magazine than the conventional AR-15. It also supports larger rounds because the magazine is bigger and more flared.

The stripped/forged style gives it a tremendous amount of durability and strength compared to other lower receivers. Another strong point of this receiver is that it’s quite light, which is good for handling.

This lower receiver can also allow you to create a custom AR rifle from the ground up.

The coating on the surface is commendable as well. You will feel great holding it. Plus, it can resist corrosion, making it safe to use the weapon in rain.

It is machined from the 7075-T6 aluminum and contains a matte black hard-coat anodized Mil 8625 Type 3 Classic 2 finish.

Apart from that, it also has an integrated trigger guard that contributes to strength.

This 308 AR lower receiver accepts both Battle Arms Development safety selectors and standard safeties as well. You can choose the one that you like more.

The magwell is higher and larger enough to accommodate and seat the magazine properly. It accepts PMAG magazine and provides rapid reloads.

Lastly, the takedown pin detent hole at the bottom is 4-40 threaded. It aids in setting the screw and makes sure that the screw holds the takedown pin. This is why you won’t be needing a roll pin.

Pros:

  • Integrated trigger guard and selector markings.
  • Accepts most safeties.
  • Resists corrosion
  • No roll pins required during installation.

Cons:

  • Can be a bit difficult to handle.

Aero Precision 308 AR M5 (Lower) is quite a reliable lower receiver. Its ability to support a large number of weapons makes it one of the best 308 lower receivers.

2. James Madison 80% Lower Receiver with Jig

James Madison 80% Lower Receiver with Jig

This JMT-James Madison Tactical lower receiver is constructed with a top-end plastic and has a 3-piece solid construction. It comes equipped with a machining jig which is a plus.

Plus, you will face no difficulty in assembling this beauty as it comes with machining instructions. This is why it is quite suitable for new users as well.

Features

  • Made up of Hybrid polymer 80 and fiber material.
  • Contains webbed magwells.
  • DPMS compliant.
  • 80% assembled and comes with a jig.

If you are looking for a lower receiver that can perform well in high stress areas then JMT can be your best choice. It is made of hybrid fibers and polymers that make it quite strong and easy to handle.

You won’t need to get an FFL since it’s an 80% assembled receiver and is not actually a firearm. However, you will need to work on it in order to make it usable.

What you need to add and modify is the hammer pin, trigger slot, safety selector hole, trigger, and fire control group.

You will be requiring a few tools to complete the receiver. These include:

  • Various lengths and sizes of drill bits.
  • Mill
  • machine vice
  • Razor
  • Craft knife
  • Gunsmithing tools.

You can drill, file, and cut parts of the receiver as you see fit and assemble it like you want to.

This aluminum lower receiver is constructed with polymer80 which resists corrosion and keeps the rifle in top notch shape.

It is a DPMS compliant receiver and has brand new JMT Gen 2 logo markings on it. You can place Magpul magazines on the left and right sides in the webbed magazine wells.

The webbed magazine gives it a solid hand grip, In fact, you can further tighten the grip using the grip screw down without stripping the threads thanks to the threaded brass insert.

Pros:

  • Made up of durable polymer 80 material.
  • Resists corroding.
  • Offers great handling.
  • Tightens grip.

Cons:

  • Need to be assembled which requires tools and skills.

James Madison 80% Lower Receiver with Jig can be a great pick for users on the lookout for a durable lower receiver. It offers great customization and can be fun to use.

3. Black Rain Ordnance Stripped Lower Receiver

Black Rain Ordnance Stripped Lower Receiver

The Black Rain Ordnance lower receiver supports the DPMS LR 308 pattern components like a charm. You will be able to use a large number of aftermarket parts with this beauty.

Features

  • Billet style.
  • Made up of 7075 aluminum.
  • Corrosion resistant.
  • Black matte finish.

It accepts DPMS magazines including Magpul PMAG .308 which is a great plus, This magazine doesn’t have bent feed lips, making it easier to reload and clean it.

The best part is that this lower receiver is fully machined from the durable 7075 aluminum which gives it superior durability and stability.

It’s also known to prevent the occurrences of rattles and slopes. Moreover, thanks to the aluminum, this receiver won’t succumb to corrosion. Hence, it makes it more durable and long lasting.

You can choose from two designs and finishes, the parkerized and rugged matte black finish or a non-guard electroless nickel finish. Both are durable and attractive.

It is a little more expensive than other options due to it being a billet styled receiver. However, the price is worth it as it offers amazing performance.

You can interchange almost every component present on this receiver except for the takedown pin at the bottom bolt catch and release and pivot pin.

This billet style Armalite 10 lower consists of a 3.9mm hammer/trigger pin holes and a 6.4mm takedown/pivot pin holes. However, there’s a downside. You won’t get the bolt catch screw when you buy this lower receiver. You will have to purchase it separately.

The bolt catch pin hole on the receiver is threaded without a forward assist. This is why there’s no requirement of using a roll pin for keeping the upper and lower receivers together.

The process is simple. All you need to do is screw/unscrew the pin to attach and detach it. There’s an integrated trigger guard on the receiver as well which contributes to its overall rigidity and durability.

Lastly, you will find pictures of selector markings on this receiver. They denote a safe, fire or 3-round burst firing position. You can choose any option that you feel suitable.

Pros

  • 7075 T6 billet aluminum.
  • Accepts DPMS LR 308 components/pattern.
  • Threaded bolt catch pin hole.
  • Integral trigger guard.
  • Pictogram selector markings.

Cons

  • You need to buy the bolt catch screw separately.

Black Rain Ordnance Stripped Lower Receiver is one of the best AR-10 lower receivers on the market. It is available in two designs and offers some amazing features.

4.  Mega Arms Maten Billet Lower & Upper Receiver

Mega Arms Maten Billet Lower & Upper Receiver

Mega Arms Maten Billet Lower & Upper Receiver is known for a lot of things including its affordable price and usability. This beauty is highly versatile and easy to use.

Features

  • Oversized trigger guard.
  • Flared magwell opening.
  • Laser engraved T numbers.
  • 7075 aluminum alloy.

This is a billet style receiver that has excellent durability and performance whether you are hunting or practicing.

This AR-10 complete lower receiver is high in demand because of its versatility. You will have no trouble in finding aftermarket parts to build a dream rifle with this beauty.

As discussed earlier, some lower receivers work best with specific upper receivers, Mega Arms Maten is one of them. Therefore, this product includes both upper and lower receivers along with a charging handle, plus bolt catch pin, dust cover door, and takedown pins.

This lower receiver features an ambidextrous bolt release which makes it a breeze to release the bolt and proceed with the installation.

This billet type receiver consists of a CNC machined metal that’s carved from a single billet block. Moreover, if you have the technical skills, you can perform alterations on the rifle and change a few components as you desire.

It also does not fail in terms of aesthetics. It’s a beautiful looking piece as the Picatinny rail has engraved T numbers on top.

There’s a safety selector on the opposite hand and pictograms provides you with visual assistance to ensure safety. The magazine well is nicely flared and allows you to do quick clippings and reloads.

The trigger guard is large enough to offer lots of space for your gloved finger. Apart from that, it also adds up to the durability of the receiver.

Pros

  • 7075 aluminum is 70% stronger than 6061 alloy.
  • Easy magazine insertion.
  • Unique aesthetics.
  • Supports many aftermarket components.

Cons

  • Can be a bit difficult to handle for some users.

This billet styled lower receiver set is commendable and suitable for shooters who want a durable receiver that can withstand recoils like a pro.

5. CROSS MACHINE TOOL CO., INC. - 308 AR STRIPPED BILLET UPPER & LOWER RECEIVER SET

CROSS MACHINE TOOL CO., INC. - 308 AR STRIPPED BILLET UPPER & LOWER RECEIVER SET

If you in search of a lower that can serve you in the long run then consider this beauty. It is made up of high-grade aluminum that prevents corrosion and offers tremendous durability.

Features

  • Strong black finish.
  • Rugged appearance.
  • Ultra-flared magwell.
  • Head hex screw is used instead of a roll pin for easy installation.

This is again a receiver set that includes both lower and upper sets for better compatibility. However, if you wish, you can choose the lower receiver only.

The strength to weight ratio of this lower says it all. It is strong and durable thanks to the 7075 aluminum build which offers quick recoil.

It has a rugged appearance and the black finish gives it a rich look. Moreover, the receiver incorporates a conventional DPMS design which offers a good fit around the hand.

This forged style lower receiver is quite easy to install as it doesn’t require a roll pin. You can use the included hex head screw which can be screwed and unscrewed when required.

The accuracy of your rifle will enhance drastically when you install both the upper and lower Cross Machine Tool receivers together. They offer excellent alignment, leave minimum gap, and provide excellent accuracy with every shot you take.

Pros

  • Standard DPMS components are supported.
  • Easy installation.
  • Extremely durable.
  • Supports PMAGs.

Cons

  • No forward assistance.

CROSS MACHINE TOOL CO., INC. - 308 AR STRIPPED BILLET UPPER & LOWER RECEIVER SET is ideal for shooters who prefer durability, strength, and accuracy. It’s a long lasting product that’s easy to maintain.

6. MATRIX ARMS - AR-15 80% LOWER RECEIVER FORGED

MATRIX ARMS - AR-15 80% LOWER RECEIVER FORGED

This lower receiver is aimed at enhancing the accuracy by providing shooters with an excellent grip. However, it may only be suitable for experienced players as it may be a bit difficult to use for some users.

Features

  • Manufactured with strong 7075 aluminum.
  • Customizable.
  • Thick build ensures longevity.
  • Corrosion resistance.

This 80% lower receiver needs to be filed, cleaned, and drilled to fit perfectly. You will need to add an interior pocket for the hammer and machined trigger to make it operational.

It contains one of the strongest builds thanks to the 7075 corrosion resistant aluminum that makes it extra durable. It also has a superior anodized black finish that improves the grip and makes it suitable for all weather conditions.

The receiver is soldered with S&F markings on both sides. This makes it look premium and neat. There’s also a lug down pocket that adds to the functionality.

You will also find the exterior machining to be impressive as it comes done. You will only need to make the interior pocket for the hammer and a machined trigger to complete the build.

Plus, you do not have to worry about needing an FFL license since it is only 80% assembled and not operational like other lower receivers are.

There’s a bigger gap in the receiver which requires a bit of sanding and filing. Once done, this lower receiver will be ready to offer a smooth grip and better accuracy.

Pros

  • Can withstand harsh conditions and works in the rain as well.
  • Premium build.
  • Long lasting and durable.
  • Can be customized.

Cons

  • Might not work with an upper receiver other than Matrix Arms.

MATRIX ARMS - AR-15 80% LOWER RECEIVER FORGED aces when it comes to accuracy and durability. It offers the shooter with good handling, grip and is also customizable.

Things To Consider Before Buying an AR-10 Lower Receiver

Why Upgrade The Lower Receiver?

The right lower receiver is known to improve performance and add to the ability. It may look like a simple tool but it’s quite effective.

If you want to add comfort and take your shooting game up a notch then consider upgrading the lower receiver.

It is important to know what kind of lower receiver would go best with your rifle. Upgrading it with mismatched components can degrade the performance, therefore, compatibility is important.

Also, you need to look into the availability of magazines as well.

Let’s go through the factors that one should consider when buying a lower receiver:

Patterns

There are two popular patterns:

  • LR-309 (DPMS)
  • ArmaLite (AR-10)

The geometry of these two lower receivers differs from one another and this is what makes all the difference.

A DPMS lower receiver is elliptical on the bottom unlike AR, which is angled. Most shooters prefer an angled receiver against an elliptical one.

Apart from that, what’s interesting is that a DPMS lower won’t blend well with an ArmaLite upper but an ArmaLite lower will work with a DPMS upper.

However, trying to match a DPMS lower with an ArmaLite upper will result in a mismatched pattern and lead to large breaches between the receivers. Moreover, it may lead to the accumulation of dirt in the gaps. This may affect the rifle’s performance.

Therefore, it is recommended to go for an AR-10 lower receiver.

Magazine Availability

Both the receiver patterns support modern magazines based on the waffle-pattern.

DPMS goes well with Mag pull and D&H industries magazines. On the other hand, Armalite has its own magazine stocks (Series A and Series B).

Customization

You may either opt for ready-made lower receivers or choose to customize it.

Both have their own benefits. Ready made receivers save you time and offer precision while customizable lower receivers allow you to add a personal touch.

Trigger Guard

Another important component that takes a lower receiver performance up a notch is the trigger guard. Some lowers come with an integrated trigger guard while some don’t.

The job of the trigger guard is to strengthen the lower and make it long lasting.

Lower Receiver Style:

You will find three various lower style receivers on the market, each with properties.

Forged

This is one of the most common and popular styles as it is said to be the strongest of all.

It is constructed using aluminum or steel. The metal is hammered and molded into the required shape. After that, it is heated to enhance durability and strength.

It later undergoes a few touch ups and modifications. These include smoothing the edges, making holes, performing coats, and engravings.

Billet

Billet receivers take more time, effort, and energy to reach the desired results which is why they are pricier than forged receivers.

It is constructed by first carving the metal and is then CNC machined from an individual billet block.

It is not as strong as a forged receiver but can bear strong recoils. It, however, has some perks as you have the ability to change its appearance as needed.

80% Assembled

Just like the name suggests, this receiver is only 80% assembled. In other words, it is not a complete firing firearm and you will not need an FFL certificate/license to buy it.

It’s suitable for DIYers or shooters who love to experiment. Since it comes 80% assembled, you will need the required tools and remaining parts to complete this receiver.

Moreover, you must have a bit of knowledge about how receivers work in order to assemble it.

The Bottomline

These AR-10 lower receivers are exceptional in terms of performance and features, however, you need to pick one that suits your needs and supports your weapon.

For us, the best AR-10 lower receiver is the Aero Precision 308. It has an integrated trigger guard and thanks to the forged style, it is super durable.

If you are a technical person and want to set up your rifle by yourself then you can opt for James Madison 80% Lower Receiver with Jig. It is made up of hybrid polymer 80 and durable fiber that runs for a longer time.

At the end of the day, choose a lower receiver that is compatible with your rifle and offers all that you need.

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