M16A1 Automatic Rifle 5.56mm/.223”

01. Original name M16A1 Automatic Rifle .223”  
02. Other official names M16A1  
03. Popular names Black rifle  
04. Chamberings 5.56 x 45mm NATO  
05. Designed by Eugene Stoner and L. James Sullivan  
06. Design date 1959  
07. In service date(s) 1963 till current  
08. Adopted by USA and 94 countries world wide  
09. Production quantities circa 8 million  
10. Mechanism Gas operated rotating bolt  
11. Weight 6.37lb (2.89Kg) Unloaded  
12. Mountings   
13. Practicality in action The rifle is comfortable and easy to use and is said to be able to group at 4 MOA at 300 mts. Initially the rifle had a reputation for poor reliability. The unreliable performance of the weapon experienced in the early days of the Vietnam War went as far as a “congressional investigation”. Several recommendations came for this and once implemented the reliability problems reduced significantly. Eventually it became a much-liked weapon by the soldiers that carried it.  
14. Comments / Other information Introduced in 1964 (as Ma6E1) modification of M16 rifle (Armalite .223” AR 15); chambered for the 5.56x45mm round; cyclic rate about 750rpm; uses 20 and 30-round box magazines; weight without magazine 6.5lb, body and butt frame made from aluminium. Superseded by later versions.