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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
This may be a REALLY stupid question, but I cannot understand what the difference between "regular" and "carbine" are?

For example, looking at the Daniel Defense rails have various length carbines as well as mid-lengths.
http://www.danieldefense.com/?page=shop/detail&product_id=29

I thought that carbine (CAR) was the shorter rail, but then how are there longer rails?

Thanks!
carbine has to do with barrel length. I think less than 20" barrel is a carbine
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
car·bine
/ˈkɑr
bin, -baɪn/
Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[kahr-been, -bahyn]Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
–noun 1.a light, gas-operated semiautomatic rifle. 2.(formerly) a short rifle used in the cavalry.

here is the Link http://www.reference.com/search?q=carbine click here there is a alot more history great stuff. Also the Carbines just look cooler
Carbine

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - Cite This Source

A carbine is a firearm similar to, but generally shorter and less powerful than, a rifle or musket of a given period. There have been many carbines developed from rifles, being essentially shorter rifles firing the same ammunition, although usually at a lower velocity, and there have also been many where the carbine and rifle adopted by a particular nation were not technically related, such as using completely different ammunition or internal operating systems (though the carbine still being weaker, or of smaller size). Which may be more common, depending on the time period.
In the 1800s, carbines were generally smaller firearms for cavalry. The foot soldiers would have a longer, more powerful firearm, and cavalry a shorter, lighter firearm. The shorter length and lighter weight of carbines makes them easier to handle in close-quarter combat situations (such as urban or jungle warfare), or when deploying from vehicles. The disadvantages of carbines, when compared with their longer counterparts, are generally poorer long-range accuracy and shorter effective range.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Then what are the different rails? Some are defined as Carbine (even though they are longer than standard) and some are mid-length.

http://www.danieldefense.com/?page=shop/browse&category=railsystems_m4rails
What they're talking about is the gas system length (the distance between the front sight and the reciever). A "carbine" gas system, which is the most common these days, is 7" long. Midlength is 9", rifle is 12"

The ones marked (Carbine) are all for carbine-length gas systems, regardless of the rail length. As you can see, they have cutouts for the front sight base:
 
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