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Blue Collar Builds: Saint Competition

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Most consumers don’t feel the need for modification. The comfort of having something work the way it was intended is not a notion to strive for, but the way things should be. This idea has no place in the gun world. Shooters cannot leave well enough alone. It’s good, but just think how much better it could be if we added aftermarket parts. Why drive stock?

Now that everyone has an AR-15, the next stage in evolution is the progression of skills. For many, plinking and poking holes in paper gets boring after a while, so the next step is to get faster and more consistent at making those holes. There’s no better way to learn than to jump in the deep end, so why not sign yourself up for a competition? 

Blue Collar Builds Nick Saiti

The influx of new AR-15 owners has created another problem (or opportunity depending what side you’re on). How do you set your gun apart? This is the allure of the AR platform. Colors, lengths, calibers, ergonomics, and genders (it’s 2021 after all) are all malleable. Not to mention the idea of wringing out more performance from that new blaster. 

There are a few parts that are considered essential to performance in practical shooting. The barrel, trigger, free-floating handguard, and sighting system all play crucial roles, the rest of the parts just have to work. Competitions are rarely won because of better equipment, but they can definitely be lost because of inferior parts.  

The Springfield Armory Saint rifle is a modern-day version of the Stoner design and a good balance of value and quality. Its 16-inch barrel is chambered in 5.56mm so you can shoot both .223 and the hotter NATO spec stuff, and its mid-length gas system does wonders to tame the fast bullets. It features flip-up iron sights for all the sadists out there. The nickel-coated trigger group is not exactly a high-end aftermarket part, but it’s better than most factory levers we’ve tested. In all, it’s a solid base to work from. 

Blue Collar Builds Saint

Since my counterparts don’t have the experience in competition that I do, I decided my gun was to be on the flashy side. To accomplish the ostentatious task the Timber Creek Outdoors (TCO) Enforcer complete build kit was selected. This was mostly for my colleagues’ benefit. If my rifle is bright there’s no way they would miss what I’m doing, and in the end they might learn something. Pure beneficence. I chose red in honor of my Albanian heritage, though alas, my Adidas tracksuit was at the cleaners, and gold chains are hard to run with (sorry, grandma). 

Holosun HS403c

Weight: 2.8 ounces
MSRP: $242

Blue Collar Builds Holosun HS403C

Holosun started out in 2013 and has since earned a great reputation for cutting-edge technology, durability, and a reasonable price point. The Holosun HS403c is a 20mm “tube” style micro red dot designed for carbines and rifles. The 2 MOA dot is bright enough for a sunny day and the multilayer glass is clean. It features a 1/3 co-witness mount and a little detail that is often overlooked — the dot emitter is at the 5 o’clock position so as to not hinder the ability to co-witness iron sights. Arguably one of Holosun’s best innovations is the solar failsafe option. Essentially this is a mini solar panel for your red dot ensuring that unless the sun dies you never have to worry about battery life. The design is minimalistic and works perfectly to get the job done.

The kit has everything needed to set your new AR apart from the other mall ninjas. You never have to answer the question, “Which one is yours?” They’ll know when they see it. The kit includes a 15-inch M-LOK ultralight handguard. Thin, durable, plenty of real estate; and amazing looks to boot — everything you want in a competition handguard. To call the ambidextrous charging handle oversized is an understatement — we were worried about it getting through tight doorways. Let’s just say it’s not easy to miss even when the pressure is on. The grip is all aluminum, which gives the gun a solid feel and is a refreshing change from the normal plastic piece. The dust cover, forward assist, ambidextrous safeties, extended mag release, trigger guard, and take-down pins are all upgraded anodized parts, and the buffer tube is also color-coded to match the rest of the kit. The Heartbreaker compensator works well to mitigate muzzle movement and has an uncanny ability to make ears on either side of you bleed. It’s loud.

blue collar builds nick saiti

This is the type of kit you should definitely buy a matching outfit for. Every part that can be is anodized. The Enforcer kit is massive (we counted 13 pieces, not including pins and springs) and comes in nine color choices. Top it off with a lifetime warranty, and you will never mix up your gun with anyone else’s again.

Springfield Armory:
Timber Creek Outdoors:



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