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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've been trying to research my EBR purchase, which seems to be more confusing than my first handgun purchase.

AR15 or M4???

Please explain............
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
As far as I know, the AR-15A2 is the same as the M4 series. Just like the AR-15A1 is the same as the M-16 series. In my unit, we use Colt M-16A2s. But, if you pay close attention, you can find a couple that read "Colt AR-15".

Same gun, different name.

Chevy<->GMC = AR-15 <->M4/M16
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The configuration...

AR15 is more generic and M4 refers to the shorter barrel, telescoping stock ect. ect.

technically a REAL M4 would also be select fire and not available to the general public since none were made prior to 1986... but thats nit picking ;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
AR15 is the platform, the overall design base, m4 is the variation. They make several types of ar15's, one is the m4.

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The configuration...

AR15 is more generic and M4 refers to the shorter barrel, telescoping stock ect. ect.

technically a REAL M4 would also be select fire and not available to the general public since none were made prior to 1986... but thats nit picking ;)
You could take a pre-86 lower and put a short barreled M4 upper on it and put your own telescoping stock on it.;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
don't forget the mystical m4 feed ramps, found only on lmt and colt...or so i'm told. they make the gun function flawlessly, no matter what :rolleyes:
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I think the main difference is the shorter barrel and the telescoping stock. The receivers look identical to the 20" rifles.

Oh...and the price. Like the 1911...the price goes up as the rifle gets smaller...don't you love how that works?

- Brickboy240
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The configuration...

AR15 is more generic and M4 refers to the shorter barrel, telescoping stock ect. ect.

technically a REAL M4 would also be select fire and not available to the general public since none were made prior to 1986... but thats nit picking ;)

hence the term M4orgery
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Snippets taken from Wikipedia (be advised: clicking on blue underlined text will link you to the Wikipedia page for that particular item):

The weapon is a shorter and lighter version of the M16A2assault rifle, achieving 80% parts commonality with the M16A2. The M4 has selective fire options including semi-automatic and three-round burst (like the M16A2), while the M4A1 has a "full auto" option in place of the three-round burst. The M4A1 is sometimes also found with a heavier barrel to withstand heat from sustained fully automatic fire...

...The M4 was developed and produced for the United States government by Colt Firearms, which has an exclusive contract to produce the M4 family of weapons through 2009; however, a number of other manufacturers offer M4-like firearms. The M4, along with the M16A4, has mostly replaced M16 and M16A2 firearms...



History and variants
Except for the very first delivery order, all U.S. military-issue M4 and M4A1 possess a flat-top NATO M1913-specification (Picatinny) rail on top of the receiver for attachment of optical sights and other aiming devices &#8212; Trijicon TA11 and TA31 Advanced Combat Optical Gunsights (ACOG) and Aimpoint M68 Close Combat Optic (M68 CCO) being the favorite choices &#8212;, and a detachable rail-mounted carrying handle. The current government standards are the Colt Model 920 (M4) and 921 (M4A1).


M4/M4A1

The major difference between these models is that the M4 has a "S-1-3" (safe/semi-automatic/3-round burst) trigger group, while the M4A1 has a "S-1-F" (safe/semi-automatic/fully automatic) trigger group.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
More from the Wiki:

M4 MWS (Modular Weapon System)


M4 MWS (Modular Weapon System) shown with various accessories including M203 grenade launcher, RIS foregrip, removeable carry handle/rear sight assembly, AN/PEQ-2 laser system, and several optional optics.


Colt Model 925 carbines were tested fitted with the Knight's Armament Corporation (KAC) M4 RAS under the designation M4E2, but this designation appears to have been scrapped in favor of mounting this system to existing carbines without changing the designation. The U.S. Army Field Manual specifies for the Army that adding the Rail Accessory System (RAS) turns the weapon into the M4 MWS or Modular Weapon System.

M4A1

The M4A1 carbine is a variant of the basic M4 carbine intended for special operations use. The M4A1 can be found in use by many U.S. military units, including the Delta Force, U.S. Navy SEALs, U.S. Army Rangers, and the U.S. Marine Corps' Radio Reconnaissance Platoons and Force Reconnaissance companies. The M4A1 Carbine is specially favored by counter-terrorist and special operations units for close quarters combat because of the carbine's compactness and firepower. These features are also very useful in urban warfare. Although the M4 does not have as great an effective range as the longer M16, many military analysts consider engagement with a non-specialized small arm above a range of 300 meters to be unnecessary. It is effective at ranges of 150 meters or less. It has a maximum effective range of about 400 meters.
In the last few years, M4A1 carbines have been refit or received straight from factory with barrels with a thicker profile under the handguard. This is for a variety of reasons such as heat dissipation during full-auto and accuracy as a byproduct of barrel weight. These heavier barrel weapons are also fitted with a heavier buffer known as the H2. Out of three sliding weights inside the buffer, the H2 possesses two tungsten weights and one steel weight, versus the standard H buffer, which uses one tungsten weight and two steel weights. These weapons, known by Colt as the Model 921HB (for Heavy Barrel), have also been designated M4A1, and as far as the government is concerned the M4A1 represents both the 921 and 921HB.

SOPMOD Block I


SOPMOD (Special Operations Peculiar Modification) Block I


USSOCOM developed the Special Operations Peculiar Modification (SOPMOD) Block I kit for the carbines used by units under its jurisdiction. The kit features an M4A1 carbine, a Rail Interface System (RIS) handguard developed by Knight's Armament Company, a shortened quick-detachable M203 grenade launcher and leaf sight, a KAC sound suppressor, a KAC back-up rear sight, an Insight Technologies AN/PEQ-2A visible laser/infrared designator, along with Trijicon's ACOG and Reflex sights, and a night vision sight. This kit was designed to be configurable (modular) for various missions, and the kit is currently in service with special operations units (though many soldiers have changed the Trijicon reflex sight for M68 CCO red dot sights and EOTech holographic sights).

SOPMOD Block II

A second-generation SOPMOD kit (now known as SOPMOD II) is currently under development, with many different manufacturers competing for a contract. Notable bidders include Knight's Armament Company, Atlantic Research Marketing Systems (ARMS), and Lewis Machine & Tools. Daniel Defense has won the contract for the RIS-II, the next generation of rail handguards.
Variants of the carbine built by different manufacturers are also in service with many other foreign special forces units, such as the Australian Special Air Service Regiment (SASR). While the SASR uses weapons of essentially the same pattern built by Colt for export (Colt uses different models to separate weapons for the U.S. military and those for commercial/export purposes), the British SAS uses a variant on the basic theme, the SFW built by Diemaco of Canada. Although Diemaco was purchased by Colt and renamed Colt Canada, the Diemaco names and related firearms were kept.
As mentioned, the M4 replaced the M3A1 "Grease Gun" submachine gun that remained in U.S. service, mainly with tank crews. They previously had M3s, but this was changed to two M4s and two M9 pistols ("personal defense weapons"). This was as much to increase capability as it was to change over from .45 ACP, as M3A1s could be configured to fire 9 mm ammunition.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
And the last little bit taken from Wikipedia. Thanks, Wikipedia!

American civilian ownership

Sales of actual M4s by Colt are restricted to military and law enforcement. Only under special circumstances can a civilian own an official M4 Carbine. While many machine guns can be legally owned with a proper tax stamp from the BATFE, an amendment to the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986 barred the transfer to civilians of machine guns made in the U.S. after May 19, 1986. The only exception was for Special Occupational Taxpayers (SOT): licensed machine gun dealers with demonstration letters, manufacturers, and those dealing in exports and imports. As such, only the earliest Colt M4 prototypes built prior to May 19, 1986 would be legal to own by civilians not in the categories mentioned.

Trademark issues

Many manufacturers produce firearms that come very close in terms of appearance to a military M4. Usually, M4-like firearms, frequently called "M4geries" (a play on the word forgery), feature 16-inch barrels and are semi-automatic only. Though some may have shorter barrels, either being registered as a Short Barreled Rifle, or having a permanently attached flash hider or muzzle brake bringing the total length up to a minimum of 16 in. The M4-like firearms have been a bone of contention with Colt, which maintained that it retained sole rights to the M4 name and design. Other manufactures had long maintained that Colt had been overstating their rights &#8212; "M4" has now become more of a generic term for a shortened M16/AR-15. In April 2004, Colt filed a lawsuit against Heckler & Koch (HK) and Bushmaster Firearms, claiming acts of trademark infringement, trade dress infringement, trademark dilution, false designation of origin, false advertising, patent infringement, unfair competition, and deceptive trade practices. Heckler & Koch later settled out of court, changing one product's name from "HK M4" to "HK416". However, on December 8th, 2005, a District court judge in Maine granted a summary judgment in favor of Bushmaster Firearms.
And don't forget the magical, mystical feed ramps!!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I think the main difference is the shorter barrel and the telescoping stock. The receivers look identical to the 20" rifles.

Oh...and the price. Like the 1911...the price goes up as the rifle gets smaller...don't you love how that works?

- Brickboy240
Like Mariah Carey's wardrobe... :) the more money she makes, the less clothing she wears :p
 
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