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1811guy
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Posted: 2/18/2011 11:16:34 AM
[Last Edit: 2/18/2011 11:24:52 AM by 1811guy]
Originally Posted By thebufenator:
I honestly don't understand why an M4 fits in the A2 forum.

Whenever I talk with the other guys on my unit;s marksmanship team, an "A2" refers to an M16A2 or civilian copy. A carbine with an A2 upper is an M4 or clone........

To me an A2 is a 20" A2 upper rifle.
If it doesn't closely follow an M16A2 its different. Something else.

The difference between an M16 A1 and A2 are more than just the sights. A2 Barrel, A2 sights/upper, A2 stock, A2 hand guards and pistol grip.......


Gotta disagree with the part in bold. Colloquially that may be the case in your unit, but it is inaccurate as there are many A2 designated weapons made for the USG. There were even models of the M16A2 that used A1 profile barrels (707, 711, 719), as well as AR15 A2 models. For example, my Colt 6520 has A2 rollmarked onto the receiver and has an A1 profile barrel (as did other M16A2 rifles and carbines), A2 FH, A2 upper, A2 sights, 3rd gen. A2 stock, A2 handguard, and is called an AR15 A2 government carbine. It can't be called an M4 or a clone because it doesn't even look like an M4 or have the same features, and was developed years before the M4. They are patterned after the M16A2 government carbine and use the same components except for the FA FCG. Even the XM4 was an A2 variant that used an A2 upper, A2 sights and A2 components. The common M4 we know today was introduced years later and has very distinct features from the A2 carbines.

The rest of what you say is correct - an M4 does not belong in this forum. The A2 carbines that have the features you mentioned are A2's. If you want to call and apple an orange, or a cat a dog - knock yourself out. M16A2 can be a rifle or a carbine - the US Military uses and has used both.

Here is a comprehensive table of the various models of the M16 and AR15 that have been produced:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AR-15_variants
Bumblebee_Bob
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Posted: 2/18/2011 11:20:17 AM
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.

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F14ADC
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Posted: 2/18/2011 12:03:41 PM
Originally Posted By Bumblebee_Bob:
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.



This less rails, P mags, lasers and a whole host of tacticool stuff.
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Posted: 2/18/2011 12:10:28 PM
I think the Colt M16A1E1 might darn well be put in the A2 bucket as well. Or do we need a transitional model forum too

Let's face it, the A2 upper is one thing but defining what an A2 lower is and the features that came with them is a very complicated issue that only AR Junkies would even bother to try to argue about but hey this is ARFCOM!
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Posted: 2/18/2011 1:04:33 PM
If there ain't no arguing, it ain't ARFCOM.

I think the M16A1E1 belongs here, as well as in the Retro Forum, because it has various A1 & A2 components.
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AR15fan
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Posted: 2/18/2011 9:34:48 PM
A2 would be limited to 20" A2 profile Brls with fixed CH w/ a2 sights.
Nothing in this post should be considered information posted in an official capacity. It is the authors personal opinion alone.
AR15fan
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Posted: 2/18/2011 9:36:30 PM
Originally Posted By Bumblebee_Bob:
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.



Including early M4 Carbines?
Nothing in this post should be considered information posted in an official capacity. It is the authors personal opinion alone.
Quarterbore
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Posted: 2/18/2011 9:43:01 PM
[Last Edit: 2/18/2011 9:43:28 PM by Quarterbore]

Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Originally Posted By Bumblebee_Bob:
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.



Including early M4 Carbines?

LOL, does it have the reinforced lower?

http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=3&f=123&t=294264

If so, then it is an A2 as there is no such thing (yet) as an A3 lower

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Gamma762
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Posted: 2/18/2011 10:44:50 PM
Originally Posted By Bumblebee_Bob:
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.

What about a 723, or C7/C8?
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Bumblebee_Bob
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Posted: 2/18/2011 11:02:49 PM
Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Originally Posted By Bumblebee_Bob:
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.



Including early M4 Carbines?



Originally Posted By Gamma762:
Originally Posted By Bumblebee_Bob:
Anything with an integral carry handle and fully adjustable rear sight.

What about a 723, or C7/C8?


Why not?

Personally I would consider the integral carry handle with fully adjustable rear sight as the defining feature. The reinforcements on the lower are simply PIP features. Barrels are easily changed so you can have all sorts of govt. profiles, HBARs, M4, whatever profile.

Although as soon as I hit "Submit" I knew someone would ask about the C7/C8. But yeah I would include them with the A2's as well.

Just my humble, and not necessarily informed, opinion.
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Thatguy96
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Posted: 2/18/2011 11:22:06 PM
Originally Posted By 1811guy:
...but it is inaccurate as there are many A2 designated weapons made for the USG.

There is only one official spec for the M16A2. The most important parts of the spec are for a weapon with an S-1-3 trigger group, 20" government profile barrel with 1:7" twist, and a rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation. The rest is relatively basic and actually doesn't require the weapon to have the receiver reinforcements or improved furniture that are associated with the M16A2. This is how you end up with weapons mounted on M16A1 receivers, over-stamped as M16A2s. Similarly, an M16A1 with the new furniture is still an M16A1.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
There were even models of the M16A2 that used A1 profile barrels (707, 711, 719), as well as AR15 A2 models.

These are commercial A2 types. The lowers used on 700 series military weapons were all stamped with the name M16A2, regardless of configuration. This had no relation to the official military designation. Many of the weapons stamped AR-15A2 were actually built on A1 style lowers as well. Again, to be clear, this isn't somehow a comment on what should be discussed in this forum. All of these weapons are appropriate here.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
...[the 6520] was developed years before the M4.

According to Biggerhammer.net, the 6520 came out in 1988 (not sure if this is accurate). The MIL-SPEC for the XM4 is dated April 1987.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
M16A2 can be a rifle or a carbine - the US Military uses and has used both.

In the US military there is only one M16A2. Any other weapons with what we understand to be A2 features in service were either known by commercial nomenclature (like the 723 and 727) or designated separately (like the M16A3). The term M16A2 has been used by Colt, as you noted, to refer to all the weapons with various A2 style features, mostly the receiver reinforcements and the new furniture, as well as some weapons in the transitional 700 series which really had neither for a period.
maleante
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Posted: 2/18/2011 11:47:44 PM
[Last Edit: 2/18/2011 11:50:43 PM by maleante]


Originally Posted By Thatguy96:

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
...but it is inaccurate as there are many A2 designated weapons made for the USG.

There is only one official spec for the M16A2. The most important parts of the spec are for a weapon with an S-1-3 trigger group, 20" government profile barrel with 1:7" twist, and a rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation. The rest is relatively basic and actually doesn't require the weapon to have the receiver reinforcements or improved furniture that are associated with the M16A2. This is how you end up with weapons mounted on M16A1 receivers, over-stamped as M16A2s. Similarly, an M16A1 with the new furniture is still an M16A1.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
There were even models of the M16A2 that used A1 profile barrels (707, 711, 719), as well as AR15 A2 models.

These are commercial A2 types. The lowers used on 700 series military weapons were all stamped with the name M16A2, regardless of configuration. This had no relation to the official military designation. Many of the weapons stamped AR-15A2 were actually built on A1 style lowers as well. Again, to be clear, this isn't somehow a comment on what should be discussed in this forum. All of these weapons are appropriate here.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
...[the 6520] was developed years before the M4.

According to Biggerhammer.net, the 6520 came out in 1988 (not sure if this is accurate). The MIL-SPEC for the XM4 is dated April 1987.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
M16A2 can be a rifle or a carbine - the US Military uses and has used both.

In the US military there is only one M16A2. Any other weapons with what we understand to be A2 features in service were either known by commercial nomenclature (like the 723 and 727) or designated separately (like the M16A3). The term M16A2 has been used by Colt, as you noted, to refer to all the weapons with various A2 style features, mostly the receiver reinforcements and the new furniture, as well as some weapons in the transitional 700 series which really had neither for a period.

Biggerhammer might have a lot of info, but it is not 100% accurate. I own a 6420 that was made late 1988. My 6420 is a transition model and has all features of the 6520, yet is designated a 6420.

I'll save my thoughts on the people who can spend any amount of dollars on a rifle but can't devote 20 minutes to getting their body in shape for another thread. -skinnysarge79
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Posted: 2/19/2011 12:31:05 AM
[Last Edit: 2/19/2011 12:34:28 AM by bluefalcon]
If only the term A2 is used, I believe it to mean a 20" 1:7" govt. profile barrel, A2 FH, bayonet lug FSB, round handguards, A2 upper reciever with case deflector and A2 sights, full length, fixed, A2 stock, etc. In other words, ALL the features of an M16A2 except the giggle switch. "A2 style" or A2ish or something might indicate any sort of mix of A2 features but it must have a fixed carry handle I think. Then again, Colt decided to throw us a loop here:





I posted that in a dinner pic labeled as an AR-15 A2 and had a guy flat out tell me that my rifle was not an A2 because it has A1 sights. Guess he should tell Colt that they engraved their rifles wrong.
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maleante
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Posted: 2/19/2011 12:53:13 AM

Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
If only the term A2 is used, I believe it to mean a 20" 1:7" govt. profile barrel, A2 FH, bayonet lug FSB, round handguards, A2 upper reciever with case deflector and A2 sights, full length, fixed, A2 stock, etc. In other words, ALL the features of an M16A2 except the giggle switch. "A2 style" or A2ish or something might indicate any sort of mix of A2 features but it must have a fixed carry handle I think. Then again, Colt decided to throw us a loop here:

http://i52.tinypic.com/2ljjedj.jpg

http://i52.tinypic.com/28ksg9y.jpg

I posted that in a dinner pic labeled as an AR-15 A2 and had a guy flat out tell me that my rifle was not an A2 because it has A1 sights. Guess he should tell Colt that they engraved their rifles wrong.

That looks familiar... minus the A1 sights from 20K or so rifles earlier...


I'll save my thoughts on the people who can spend any amount of dollars on a rifle but can't devote 20 minutes to getting their body in shape for another thread. -skinnysarge79
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Posted: 2/19/2011 1:05:09 AM
Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
I posted that in a dinner pic labeled as an AR-15 A2 and had a guy flat out tell me that my rifle was not an A2 because it has A1 sights. Guess he should tell Colt that they engraved their rifles wrong.

And this is the issue with using military terms to define commercial weapons. The military terms are extremely specific (if not always in the ways people think), while manufacturers can call their products whatever they want. This is why, to this day, you'll find people saying that the M16A3 has a flat top upper receiver, because that's what Colt calls all its flat top full length military rifles. The AR-15A2 Sporter IIs had features spanning the whole history of the type up until that point, incorporating what one could consider pre-A1 features (slick-side lower), A1 features (rear sights), and A2 features (furniture and d-ring).
SL2011
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Posted: 2/19/2011 1:27:08 AM
I say a fixed carry handle and A2 apertures
Beamy
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Posted: 2/19/2011 4:05:52 AM
anything with an A2 upper IMHO
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Bumblebee_Bob
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Posted: 2/19/2011 10:50:36 AM
Originally Posted By maleante:

Originally Posted By bluefalcon:
If only the term A2 is used, I believe it to mean a 20" 1:7" govt. profile barrel, A2 FH, bayonet lug FSB, round handguards, A2 upper reciever with case deflector and A2 sights, full length, fixed, A2 stock, etc. In other words, ALL the features of an M16A2 except the giggle switch. "A2 style" or A2ish or something might indicate any sort of mix of A2 features but it must have a fixed carry handle I think. Then again, Colt decided to throw us a loop here:

http://i52.tinypic.com/2ljjedj.jpg

http://i52.tinypic.com/28ksg9y.jpg

I posted that in a dinner pic labeled as an AR-15 A2 and had a guy flat out tell me that my rifle was not an A2 because it has A1 sights. Guess he should tell Colt that they engraved their rifles wrong.

That looks familiar... minus the A1 sights from 20K or so rifles earlier...



"...20K earlier or so earlier..."

So Colt did mark their receivers in reverse order?





BTW, it's in full A2 regalia except for the slab side lower. I just don't have a full size pic on line anymore.
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VAAR
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Posted: 2/19/2011 11:23:24 AM
Originally Posted By CA_TX-Cop:
Any fixed handle carry upper with the A2 sights, regardless of barrel length.

IMHO.


Like he said, including 727, etc.

My 727 replica:


JJREA
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Posted: 2/19/2011 12:43:12 PM
I urge you all to not take a hard line on what it is exactly. That's part of the whole problem. I believe anything that comes close to being A2 subject, should be allowed. 727's, A2 lowers with A1 uppers. Whatever. In my opinion, the underlying focus is the spirit of a certain era, among other things. Deserts storm, BHD, even current wars with photos of an A2 are quite alright with me. Pistols, shotguns and other rifles, if they have some kind of tie to this era or whatever is open in my mind. Just like in the retro forum. I think taking a hard line on EXACTLY what it is, is part of the problem. Inflexibility and dogmatism just doesn't need to be. In my humble opinion.

If something is posted and it's not completely on track, just ignore it. They'll go somewhere else. No need to be jerky about it. You know? Or maybe some of you don't agree. OCD isn't necessarily a good excuse to get along well with others. And since this is a forum with people, I urge you to think about that statement.
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Posted: 2/19/2011 1:47:14 PM
I agree JJREA.

I'm of the opinion that anything with an intergral carry handle would fit in the Retro forum. Even though some of it is still being issued. But that's just me again.
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1811guy
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Posted: 2/19/2011 11:41:06 PM
[Last Edit: 2/19/2011 11:59:03 PM by 1811guy]
Originally Posted By Thatguy96:
Originally Posted By 1811guy:
...but it is inaccurate as there are many A2 designated weapons made for the USG.

There is only one official spec for the M16A2. The most important parts of the spec are for a weapon with an S-1-3 trigger group, 20" government profile barrel with 1:7" twist, and a rear sight adjustable for windage and elevation. The rest is relatively basic and actually doesn't require the weapon to have the receiver reinforcements or improved furniture that are associated with the M16A2. This is how you end up with weapons mounted on M16A1 receivers, over-stamped as M16A2s. Similarly, an M16A1 with the new furniture is still an M16A1.

Okay, but I repeat my original premise - there were many variants of the M16A2 produced for the USG (used by Military and US LE agncies alike).

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
There were even models of the M16A2 that used A1 profile barrels (707, 711, 719), as well as AR15 A2 models.

These are commercial A2 types. The lowers used on 700 series military weapons were all stamped with the name M16A2, regardless of configuration. This had no relation to the official military designation. Many of the weapons stamped AR-15A2 were actually built on A1 style lowers as well. Again, to be clear, this isn't somehow a comment on what should be discussed in this forum. All of these weapons are appropriate here.

Agreed. In my post I was pointing out the multitude of A2 variants. It has a broader meaning than just the US Military M16A2 rifle.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
...[the 6520] was developed years before the M4.

According to Biggerhammer.net, the 6520 came out in 1988 (not sure if this is accurate). The MIL-SPEC for the XM4 is dated April 1987.

That was the XM4, and is not an M4. The only resemblance it bears to the M4 is the barrel length. The barrel profile is different, the handguards are different, and it uses and A2 upper with A2 sights. The 6520 predates the development and production of the actual M4

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
M16A2 can be a rifle or a carbine - the US Military uses and has used both.

In the US military there is only one M16A2. Any other weapons with what we understand to be A2 features in service were either known by commercial nomenclature (like the 723 and 727) or designated separately (like the M16A3). The term M16A2 has been used by Colt, as you noted, to refer to all the weapons with various A2 style features, mostly the receiver reinforcements and the new furniture, as well as some weapons in the transitional 700 series which really had neither for a period.

Not true. The US Military adopted the Colt model 723 for use by special forces and designated it the M16A2 Carbine (used an A1 upper though).


If the only thing that were to be accepted in this forum as A2 is the US Military M16A2, the only true A2 as you are suggesting, then this would be a very boring forum. Fortunately, A2 can also be defined more broadly (to include commercial production) and will make for a much more interesting forum. This is AR15.com after all, not M16.com. And before anyone suggests I have M16 envy, I am in Federal law enforcement and also carry a selct-fire weapon (Colt M4 RO977). Anyway, thanks for the additional information, it will be interesting digging further into the history of the M16A2 and its variants - both military and commercial, A2 builds.
Thatguy96
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Posted: 2/20/2011 1:26:59 AM
Originally Posted By 1811guy:
That was the XM4, and is not an M4. The only resemblance it bears to the M4 is the barrel length. The barrel profile is different, the handguards are different, and it uses and A2 upper with A2 sights. The 6520 predates the development and production of the actual M4

The line was that the 6520 was developed years before the M4. Development of what became the M4 was concurrent with the development of other A2 type carbines.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
Not true. The US Military adopted the Colt model 723 for use by special forces and designated it the M16A2 Carbine (used an A1 upper though).

There is nothing to suggest that the 723 was ever adopted as standard (unlike the 727) firstly, and secondly this is a commercial nomenclature as I've already noted. Items can be adopted as standard without being assigned a designation in one of the service nomenclature systems. I've seen 2 nomenclatures for the 727, which would be how the 723 nomenclature would probably have been written. These are Carbine, 5.56mm, Colt, Model 727 and Carbine, 5.56mm, M16A2, Model 727. The first is based on an accepted practice for designating commercial small arms (AIN, Manufacturer, Manufacturer's Nomenclature). The second is a nomenclature associated with an LSN, which could really be whatever someone wanted it to be, since they're for localized purposes only. Regardless, both are commercial nomenclatures, with no relation to the official M16A2 designation in the US Army nomenclature system.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
If the only thing that were to be accepted in this forum as A2 is the US Military M16A2, the only true A2 as you are suggesting, then this would be a very boring forum. Fortunately...

Fortunately, no one is talking about limiting it to just the US military definition of the M16A2. Otherwise we'd all be worried I'm sure.
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Posted: 2/21/2011 9:55:06 AM
Nonetheless, the US military adopted the 723 for use, and officially designated it the M16A2 Carbine. An important thing to remember here is that when USG is mentioned, it does not mean just military. The numerous Federal law enforcement agencies have purchased various versions of the M16 and variants since its production. They will typically use the model name and number designated by the factory, thus adopting it as an official term by the USG for that particular agency. Thus, any number of commercial M16A2 variants would be official firearms used by the USG with the A2 designation in the model name as official nomenclature.

As for the XM4, it didn't evolve into something else, it was just a prototype. The XM4 and M4 are two different rifles entirely. The actual M4 did come years after the 6520.

Originally Posted By Thatguy96:
Originally Posted By 1811guy:
That was the XM4, and is not an M4. The only resemblance it bears to the M4 is the barrel length. The barrel profile is different, the handguards are different, and it uses and A2 upper with A2 sights. The 6520 predates the development and production of the actual M4

The line was that the 6520 was developed years before the M4. Development of what became the M4 was concurrent with the development of other A2 type carbines.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
Not true. The US Military adopted the Colt model 723 for use by special forces and designated it the M16A2 Carbine (used an A1 upper though).

There is nothing to suggest that the 723 was ever adopted as standard (unlike the 727) firstly, and secondly this is a commercial nomenclature as I've already noted. Items can be adopted as standard without being assigned a designation in one of the service nomenclature systems. I've seen 2 nomenclatures for the 727, which would be how the 723 nomenclature would probably have been written. These are Carbine, 5.56mm, Colt, Model 727 and Carbine, 5.56mm, M16A2, Model 727. The first is based on an accepted practice for designating commercial small arms (AIN, Manufacturer, Manufacturer's Nomenclature). The second is a nomenclature associated with an LSN, which could really be whatever someone wanted it to be, since they're for localized purposes only. Regardless, both are commercial nomenclatures, with no relation to the official M16A2 designation in the US Army nomenclature system.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
If the only thing that were to be accepted in this forum as A2 is the US Military M16A2, the only true A2 as you are suggesting, then this would be a very boring forum. Fortunately...

Fortunately, no one is talking about limiting it to just the US military definition of the M16A2. Otherwise we'd all be worried I'm sure.


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Posted: 2/21/2011 2:03:38 PM
Originally Posted By 1811guy:
Nonetheless, the US military adopted the 723 for use, and officially designated it the M16A2 Carbine.


Originally Posted By 1811guy:
They will typically use the model name and number designated by the factory, thus adopting it as an official term by the USG for that particular agency. Thus, any number of commercial M16A2 variants would be official firearms used by the USG with the A2 designation in the model name as official nomenclature.

I think we're getting into a semantic difference on the definition of "official." Everything in government inventory is assigned a Federal Approved Item Name (AIN), but it not necessarily officially designated in any of the official nomenclature systems.

Usage of the manufacturers name as the type designator does not make that type designator an official type designator in any of the US military designation systems. The type designator was not determined by any agency of the US government. The commercial name can be used when the item does not have to be significantly modified for use. The nomenclature Rifle, 5.56mm, M16A2 has a very specific meaning. A commercial item called an M16A2 could be anything and does not have to have any relation to the Rifle, 5.56mm, M16A2 nomenclature in the US Army's nomenclature system. It could be a pink flamingo lawn ornament.

Now, are there other A2 type rifles in US military inventory? Of course. We agree on that. Are they designated as M16A2s in any of the military designation systems? No. Do they have official nomenclature as part of the logistics system? Yes.

Originally Posted By 1811guy:
As for the XM4, it didn't evolve into something else, it was just a prototype. The XM4 and M4 are two different rifles entirely. The actual M4 did come years after the 6520.

The process by which a prototype becomes a finalized design is pretty much the definition of evolution. The XM4 designation was only applied in 1987 to weapons that the US Army had been testing since 1984. The development of the M4 starts with the development of carbine versions of the M16A2. The process by which the M4 and other A2 type carbines were arrived it was concurrent. The M4 just came out of the process later.

Also, the XM4 prototypes and the production M4 are not really all that different. The handguards got changed along the way and of the various barrel profiles tested, one was selected. Within months of the design being finalized, the upper receiver was changed to the flat top. The functioning elements and dimensions were basically unchanged during the process.
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