M4 Rifle

M4 Rifle

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M4 and M4A1 5.56mm Carbine Rifle


 M4 Rifle and M4A1 Rifle

 M-4 Carbine

Picture: M-4 Rifle

The M4 Rifle and the M4A1 5.56mm Carbine assault rifle are lightweight, gas operated, air cooled, magazine fed, selective rate, shoulder fired weapons with a collapsible stocks. A shortened variant of the M16A2 rifle, the M4 rifle provides the individual soldier operating in close quarters the capability to engage targets at extended range with accurate, lethal fire. The M4 Carbine achieves over 80% commonality with the M-16A2 Rifle and will replace all M3 .45 caliber submachine guns and selected M9 pistols and M16 rifle series.

The M4A1 rifle is a compact lightweight weapon that is a modified M4 carbine rifle. The M4A1 (SOF Variant) carbine difrrers from the basic M-4 in the following features; full automatic firing mode, a flat top rail for mounting day/night sights (such as the Trijicon TA01NSN ACOG 4x32 scope and the AN/TVS-5 Crew served weapon sight) and a detachable carrying handle.

The M4A1 rifle fires the same ammunition as the M16A2 and the M4 carbine. It also mounts all accessories common to the M16A2 and M4 to include the 40 mm grenade launcher. SOF units will have the ability to adapt one versatile weapon to meet several missions rather than having many different weapons that are currently deployed.

The M-4 has interchangeable sighting systems, add-on vertical forward grips and even a detachable short version of the M-203 grenade launcher.

The rifle itself is one full pound lighter than the M-16A2 and 10 inches shorter. The collapsible buttstock is designed to make it more adaptable to individual shooters, a benefit especially in tight-packed urban areas.

There are some drawbacks to the M-4 rifle though. A shorter barrel means reduced velocity and accuracy at long ranges.

The M4 rifle is also capable of muzzle launched ordnance with rubber or rubber encased steel projectile. It provides a non-lethal means of crowd control up to 30-80 meters. 

m4a1 rifle

Picture: M4A1 Rifle

Infantry personnel receiving the M4 include platoon leaders, platoon sergeants, radio-telephone operators, and mortar gunners.

In the US Marine Corps, M4  rifles were issued to the provost marshal offices' Special Reactions Teams to phase out the 9mm Heckler and Koch MP-5. In 1999, the M4 replaced the MP5 in Marine Force Reconnaissance units, Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Teams and Military Police Special Response Teams.

The Objective Individual Combat Weapon will also replace M-4 carbines by 2006.

5.56-mm Ammo for the M-4  223 caliber M193 ammunition

The 5.56-mm round is the NATO designation for the .223 caliber bullet. The advantage of the 5.56 round is low recoil, less weight in ammo compared to the 7.62 NATO, enables a lighter rifle, and lower cost. However, a big draw back of the 5.56 round is poor penetration and poor long-range effectiveness compared to the 7.62 NATO.

The .223 bullet can travel 3,200 feet per second and it produces minimum recoil. The maximum penetration occurs at 200 meters. At ranges less then 25 meters, penetration is greatly reduced. At 10 meters, penetration by the M4 round is poor, due to the tremendous stress placed on this high-speed round, which causes it to yaw upon striking a target. Stress causes the projectile to break up, and the resulting fragments are often too small to penetrate.

  M4 Rifle


M4 Rifle



M4 Rifle and M4A1 5.56mm Carbine


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