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How does an AR-15 differ from an M16 Rifle?

Jun 17th 2020

AR-15 is a gas-powered, magazine-fed, air-cooled, selective-fire, a lightweight rifle which was developed in the United States by gun Manufacturer Company, ArmaLite in the year 1956. ArmaLite sold its rights of the AR-15 rifle to Colt in the year 1959 due to some financial problems and limited production capacity and manpower. Colt did some modifications in the rifle, the most notable change was the charging handle which was relocated to the back of the receiver from its initial position which was under the carrying handles. This redesigned rifle was marketed to many military services around the globe, after which it was adopted by the United States military and was labelled as the M16 rifle.

AR-15 is the most popular rifle in the country today. The high customization options are what makes is suitable for a wide range of operating conditions, making it a highly preferred choice among gun enthusiasts. Most of the components and parts of AR-15 and M16 are very similar. Over the years many modifications have been done in both the rifles, however, some parts can be easily interchanged, but it is not permitted as per the law and order of most countries. Read through the blog to gain a quick insight into few of the parts that are different in the M16 and AR-15 rifles.
Triggers of AR-15 and M16 are quite similar, the only difference we have seen is that the AR-15 trigger has a closed channel whilst the trigger of M16 features an open channel so that it could easily accommodate the disconnector. 

AR-15 rifle has a couple of versions of disconnector, one of the essential difference in the design of the disconnector of M16 and AR-15 is that there is a tail at the rear of the disconnector for M16, which is not present in that of AR-15.

The selector of the M16 rifle is easily distinguishable from that of AR-15 version. It features additional cutouts and can be rotated to the auto, third position when in the receiver (aiming at the rear), made possible by an additional index on the selector.

The hammer of AR-15 does not have a hook, whilst M16 hammer is designed with a hook positioned at the upper rear extreme for the auto sear. 

Bolt Carrier:
The bolt carrier of M16 usually has about 2" closed section at the back that slides the auto sear into full auto ammunition. The semi-auto versions of the rifle might have a completely open bottom or a slightly closed bottom section, it is made in this way to prevent the installation of an adapter with M-16 configuration. Another notable difference in the bolt carrier of these two rifles is that the extra metal is removed from the underside so that the collar of the firing pin can be exposed. This helps in holding the hammer, therefore preventing firing if the carrier is not seated in the exact position or is not fully forward when the hammer is released. This happens when no auto sear holding the hammer back. In the M16 rifle, the firing pin collar of the bolt carrier is not exposed.

MCS Gearup brings to the widest range of gun accessories such as AR-15 Bolt Catch Assembly Kit, Buffer Tube, Trigger Guard Assembly, Safety Selector Lever, Red Dot Sight, Micro Roni Kit and much more. All these weapon parts are ready to be shipped at the earliest and are available at fair market prices. Choose what suits your requirement the best and personalize your weapon as per your convenience. If you have any questions or queries, please feel free to contact our customer support representative.