Posted: 1/25/2009 8:37:36 AM EST
I'd like to add a chromed bolt carrier to my collection. Did Colt every produce these and are they stamped "C" on the side? Does anyone stock these?
Yes, Colt's early M16 carriers, and bolts, were hard chromed; both for the M16, and the XM16E1. The smoothside M16 carriers show up at gun shows and on internet trading sites from time to time. The notched XM16E1 types are a bit harder to find, because fewer of them were made.
Niether the bolts nor the carriers are marked with a C. Colt didn't start that practice until M16 contracts were given to GM and H&R to make M16s, and that was long after the chrome pieces had been discontinued. The best way to ID a Colt made chrome carrier is by looking at the hole for the firing pin retaining pin on the RIGHT side of the carrier. It'll be considerably larger than current versions. Also, the retaining screws wil be blued, and have the slightly smaller hex key dimensions that Colt uses vs. the aftermarket industry. Key staking will be a single punch markon each screw, either round or square, in the middle of the key, rather than the later double side stakes.
And oh yeah, expect to pay anywhere from $200 to $250 for a bolt/carrier assy.