DL-21 Build thread! Now with real mortar fin! (See post 22)

7-11 Jedi

Sr Member
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I started a DL-21 build today. I bought an old charter arms ar-7 receiver from a gun dealer, and a real sterling grip. The receiver was missing the barrel nut, so I found one online. I also have a magazine on order.

I fiddled around a bit with how to attach the grip, and I finally settled on using a piece of threaded rod with some crafty geometry to line it up with the bottom mounting hole in the grip. I added a coupler nut and a black socket cap screw so it could be attached from the outside. For the barrel, I just took a piece of pvc pipe and tapered it down a bit towards the end. I’ll finalize that a bit more once I get my casting of a 2” mortar fin, unless I find a real one! I have a single point scope replica on the way and picked up some reasonably similar scope rings and a dovetail rail. I’ll post more pics as I get more parts and work done!
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thd9791

Master Member
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Oh this is cool! Did you add a ridge to the PVC so the barrel nut can "lock" it in place?

The threaded rod support is genius, true outside the box thinking. At least one prop has the forward section of the grip ridge cut away. Above the recessed box, and all the way to the front corner.
 

Pedro

Sr Member
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Cool!! I’ve been so close to buying one of these for a Ponda Baba build! I’m settling with my 3d prints for now. I have lots of detailed info on the greeblies on this version, the way the grip is cut, etc. Not wanting to hijack your thread, let me know if you’d like any info! I believe that the barrel is a straight taper, possibly cut from the real one? Did you get a barrel with yours? Looks great so far!!
 

7-11 Jedi

Sr Member
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Did some work today, I cut the groove in the grip by the safety lever, and drilled and tapped a dovetail scope rail for the scope rings. While I had the receiver apart I took a few minutes to deactivate it so it could no longer be made to fire. Just for safety reasons. Loving this build!
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Pedro

Sr Member
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Oh good, you cut down the grip opening accurately! It seems like very few replicas get this part right for some reason. I'd be tempted to remove the safety lever all together, since it's not present on the real prop. It was a modified casting of course (like "merging" the magazine etc). This looks great! Do you plan to use real V8 greeblies, or...?
 

7-11 Jedi

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Oh good, you cut down the grip opening accurately! It seems like very few replicas get this part right for some reason. I'd be tempted to remove the safety lever all together, since it's not present on the real prop. It was a modified casting of course (like "merging" the magazine etc). This looks great! Do you plan to use real V8 greeblies, or...?
I’ll probably leave the safety lever, just because I kinda like it. I may change my mind. You never know! I have some castings of the side greeblies coming, should do the trick nicely. And I debated whether to use one of the nice (expensive) metal replicas of a singlepoint, or a resin cast one, and for now I’m going with the resin cast one. I don’t think I could bring myself to paint the clear front cone black on a nice replica one.
 

Pedro

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It is kind of neat how the safety lever still fits with the Sterling grip, and gives you something to play with... ;) Good call on the scope, I'd probably do the same. Though on a real AR-7 build, the metal scope would be cool...I think FM end caps are only like $7. ;) (mostly kidding!)
 

7-11 Jedi

Sr Member
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It is kind of neat how the safety lever still fits with the Sterling grip, and gives you something to play with... ;) Good call on the scope, I'd probably do the same. Though on a real AR-7 build, the metal scope would be cool...I think FM end caps are only like $7. ;) (mostly kidding!)
Yeah , that’s my dilemma! Since it’s a real receiver, and a real sterling grip, a metal scope would be killer…
 

Pedro

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Looks really good! But I think your left long triangular greeblie on the left (in front of the V8 arm part) is backwards. :)
 

thd9791

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This might be a selfish post but I wanted to ask - in America, is owning the trigger group of this gun illegal? Is there a way to deactivate one so it’s just for display? I know this is a rifle and not a handgun
 

7-11 Jedi

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
This might be a selfish post but I wanted to ask - in America, is owning the trigger group of this gun illegal? Is there a way to deactivate one so it’s just for display? I know this is a rifle and not a handgun
It’s from a semi-automatic rifle, so it is legal to own in the USA. Fully automatic weapons are illegal. To deactivate it, I altered the firing mechanism so that it wasn’t capable of hitting the primer of the .22 caliber rimfire cartridges that an AR-7 fired. I also blocked the bolt so that it could not be cycled. I purchased the receiver through an online gun auction site and had it sent to a local FFL who processed the transfer and did my background check.
 

7-11 Jedi

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Found a real salvaged barrel for my build. The end was damaged, so I got it cheap I cut it off at about 13cm, to give me some room to play with once I get a mortar fin. Interestingly, there’s a small attachment nut dovetailed into the bottom of the barrel. I’d never seen that before on one of these. I’m guessing it’s an aftermarket mod.

One more step done!
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Jediseth

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Great start, I’ve started collecting parts to build this, but I also starting getting parts for the Ponda blaster. Now I’m stick with to complete with only one set of 2” mortar fins.
 

Jediseth

Sr Member
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I am super excited to see someone working on this prop. There are some great referance photos out there. Heritage Auction house had a version go at auction a while back.
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