Colt Introduces New Reproduction Vietnam-Era AR-15s at NRA 2016

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Colt’s Manufacturing Co., LLC, announced at the 2016 National Rifle Association Annual meeting that they would be introducing new semi automatic reproductions of their previous military AR-15 and CAR-15 offerings to the civilian market. According to representatives, the company hopes to release 1500 each of every model of AR-15 made during the Vietnam era (which I assume means 600 series rifles only). If the company lives up to this promise, it means the chance to own everything from the first Colt AR-15, the classic 601, to the rare 605 carbine that was the first rifle in the series of short Colts that eventually led to today’s M4 Carbine. Hopefully, all variants through the special low profile 656 sniper will be made available, although I cannot confirm what variants will actually be produced. When I asked Colt’s representative, he simply said “we plan to make everything”.

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At the show, two reproductions were present, and they were good enough clones that at first I was sure they were originals. The rifles were displayed on their left side, but they were marked “XM177E2” and “XM16E1”, respectively.

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Colt representatives were very proud of the exactness with which they recreated the aluminum CAR-15 sliding stock.

Colt’s representatives were fairly tight-lipped about the project, but their excitement was palpable. The AR-15 effort represents the second Colt reproduction series to hit the market, after some new production Colt 1903 Pocket Hammerless pistols made it to the market earlier this year.



Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


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  • Limonata

    If Colt wishes to survive, they need to concentrate on the civilian market. Bring back the Python. Given the big success of The Walking Dead. Many have seen Rick Grime’s Colt Python. The Python would fly off the shelf along with other revolvers. Yes, they may piss off collectors, but rather pissed off collectors than a company lost.
    As to those rifles, meh! There are so many options they are late to the game IMHO.

    • Koop

      These are for the civilian market. Colt’s biggest market sector opportunity is probably the veterans who’d like one like the one they used for Uncle Sam. All the kiddos who want one like the one from that video game or movie are another bonus.

    • Bill

      The Python is and has been The One for me, since about 1974. Unfortunately, I doubt that Colt still has the type of gunsmiths who could assemble or finish one up to the original standards, at non-Wilson prices.

      I’ll take a Diamondback also.

      • I have read articles about how difficult it would be to continue production of the Python. Hell, it is getting harder to find a gunsmith that will even work on the old v spring Colts these days.

        • Kivaari

          It takes programmers. All the serious work can be machine made. The old time skilled craftsmen, existed until Colt and S&W stopped making every gun a fine gun. When they became what they are, people started wondering why they should cost so much. Ruger makes a reasonably priced gun, but don’t look close as they are quite crude. Look at the synthetic stocks on the M77/22, M77/357 etc. crude mild changes leaving lines, where no lines should be. Spending a few dollars more to do it right, would have enticed me into buying a couple. But, when I last looked at the 77/357 was ugly. Look at the GP100 frames where no machining is done. Ugly. Look at how simply fitted they are. A good value, yes. A great gun, well as long as you don’t mind crude looks and horrible triggers.

        • Kivaari

          Most gunsmiths are not gunsmiths. A very small number of smiths exist in the USA. But, since about 95% of gunsmith work is cleaning and parts replacement it’s no big deal. But, if you need a real pistolsmith, they are really scarce. I worked with several over he years, and would never trust my guns to them. Too many are doing blacksmithing grade work.

      • Tom

        I think its fair to say you would essentially be starting from scratch in order to train the labour force to make them. As much as people might want new production I doubt it could be done at a price that would be competitive with those already out there. And should Colt decide to use newer manufacturing techniques then it would not be a Python.

        At least that seems to be the official line, if Colt can make a 1873 for 1500 – 1600 USD in its custom shop then I think they might be able to do a Python for 2000 or so. But would the market tolerate such a price.

        • Bill

          I’d pay 2K for a Python, but likely no more. They weren’t cheap back in the day; I’d love to know what they’d cost comparing 1968 dollars to 2016 dollars.

          • Tom

            According to a few sites I found on Google it would be 6.98 USD today.

          • Kivaari

            Than multiply it by $125 retail. Or $872.50. That would be OK, if it weren’t a Colt Python.

          • ostiariusalpha

            With inflation it’s about $1200. Not a terrible price.

          • Bill

            I’m way in.

          • ostiariusalpha

            Except that the labor cost hasn’t stayed the same proportion since then. Like Nathaniel mentioned, it would cost more like $5000 today to purchase one made exactly the same as it was in 1968.

          • Bill

            I’m way out.

          • Kivaari

            BUT, no one would make them in such an antiquated fashion. The reason they aren’t made, is demand sank to zero and they did not want to invest in modern machinery. Why invest millions for a product no one was buying. I stopped buying new Colts over 30 years ago. Some of the worst made Cots were SS Anacondas and the SS Python. Junk workmanship doesn’t encourage people to buy already over-priced revolvers. Look at the last Detective Specials and “Commando” revolvers. They were junk. I bought a DS in the nice blue finish for a customer. It wouldn’t work. It went back to Colt. Colt said it was out of warranty as it had been made 3 years before but had not been sold retail until a month before. It had sat on a wholesalers shelf all that time Colt never fixed the gun. Not even for a fee. That is customer service and quality control that has dogged Colt for decades. Had they cared about the customers the product would not have become junk.

          • ostiariusalpha

            Yep, Colt squandered a good thing when they let their revolver production rot away, with no attempt to update the manufacturing methods. A new S&W or Ruger is still a fine revolver at a decent price, so it definitely can be done. To be somewhat fair, it’s only relatively recently that CNC machines have become sophisticated enough to attempt the tight tolerances of the Python, but the other Colt revolvers have been doable at a reasonable production cost for a long while now.

        • ostiariusalpha

          Whether it’s a CNC machine or a trained machinist, as long as it’s in the same spec and shoots the same, the method of manufacture is almost irrelevant to me. As long as they aren’t using wire-cut EDM parts, if they get good results, I’d have no complaints.

          • whats wrong with wire EDM parts?

          • ostiariusalpha

            Nothing at all actually, I just brain-farted a bit after doing yard work in the sun. What I really meant to write was that I didn’t want MIM parts.

    • HSR47

      The reason that they stopped making revolvers was the cost of labor. When production stopped, their revolvers were expensive enough that they were no longer really selling in any significant quantities.

      While there may be a market for a $3,500-6,000 wheelgun, it’s tiny. Realistically, that’s what their revolvers would cost to manufacture if they resumed manufacturing of them without any change in processes.

      Presumably they could utilized modern manufacturing equipment and techniques to reduce the amount of hand fitting and general labor required to assemble them, but it likely still wouldn’t be enough to get the price down to where they could compete in the marketplace.

      • herf

        people are paying these price for 1911s … Cz brought back the 715, colt could do the same thing

      • Hey, Korth is coming to America, so there must be some demand, no?

        • iksnilol

          A Korth is way better made than a Colt snakegun.

      • Kivaari

        Except, none of them need to cost that much to produce. Using modern equipment the cost of production after a reasonable recoup of tooling costs quickly pays for the gear. Much of the work used in making the Python was simply 1890 style gun making. Look at the work done by custom smiths where they can complete and sell very nice guns for less than a used Python sells for. Pythons are good guns if you can buy low and sell high.

        • HSR47

          More advanced machinery could possibly bring the per-unit cost down a bit, but probably not enough for the expenditure to be worthwhile to Colt. Remember, high-end CNC mills are outrageously expensive.

          I work in a gun store, and in my experience revolvers aren’t big sellers. Revolvers much over $500 tend to hang out in the case for quite awhile.

          Even if we are highly optimistic about Colt’s ability to produce new high-quality examples of their old wheelguns, my experience suggests that after the first rush, they’ll languish in the cases at gun stores across the country until Colt again is forced to recognize that there is no market for their wheelguns.

          Korth/Nighthawk are really a totally different ballgame: For the most part, the people that want those guns tend to order them directly from the source, or order them through their local dealer. Nighthawk is not a gigantic operation, nor is Korth; they’re both small manufacturers that operate on a more or less “built to order” basis. Colt doesn’t, and likely can’t, operate that way, which makes it cost-prohibitive to produce expensive low-demand products: Inventory that doesn’t turn over rapidly is extremely expensive.

          • Kivaari

            Yo must really have a different market. Revolvers sell well in North Idaho. Especially, old S&Ws and Colts. Plenty of semi-auto pistols sell as well. Anything over $500 that is common can sit for awhile. Put out a few 1960-70 era M19 .357s or 5-screw pre-model number S&Ws and watch the piles of $100 bills grow taller. The key, is if you don’t sell used guns, you just get stuff anyone can get. There is little profit in selling Glocks making $30 profit. A store I visit weekly, recently sold 24 revolvers to a Midwest dealer, that simply can’t get enough of the good ones. The same dealer just sold a used Python for around $2100. For a used Colt.
            New S&W Centennial revolvers are still good selling guns. A 5-shot hammerless pocket gun remains very popular.

    • Kelly Jackson

      The Colt Python would cost like $2,000 today.

      It wasn’t a cheap gun when it was still in production in the 80s and it’s very labor intenstive to produce.

      • It would be more like $5,000.

        • TheGrammarMan

          $2000 is more like it.

          For starters, nothing is made the same way as it was 40 years ago, or even 20 years ago. Not only is labor more expensive, that type of skilled labor simply doesn’t exist. Nor do the skilled gunmakers exist to train new ones.

          So the Python would have manufacturing changes- just as the S&W revolvers have had changes – and the end result is still a Python, albiet 2nd Gen. Some of that might might be MIM internals. The Royal Blue might be somewhat less royale. A new Python at ~$2000 would sell, and the existing collector insanity would remain largely undisturbed for the “purist original” Python.

          A $5000 made-just-like-the-original Python is an impossibilty as a factory gun. But with many fools paying well over $3000 for a 1911 with painted finish, a blued Python at 2 Large would do very well.

          • Kivaari

            They were over-priced at $125.

      • Eurk Burkell

        There are lots of old Pythons on the market. They aren’t that expensive, and they are good guns–but so are S & W revolvers.

        • Kivaari

          Snakes cost too much. I recently saw a ragged Python sell for $2100. I would not have paid $500 for it. I wouldn’t buy one for serious use since they were built as single action bullseye guns. Perfectly set up for thumb cocking. The DA pull is terrible. If you don’t have a large hand they are nearly impossible to shoot well DA. I went from the high 90s to mid 80s by going to a Colt. I learned to go back to S&W after leaving the academy.

          • Anon. E Maus

            The Trooper strikes me as a better choice for a utility gun.

          • Kivaari

            The early Trooper is what the Python was built on. They, like Pythons, went out f time faster than S&W revolvers (for the most part). The early Troopers within limits were a good gun. Best used SA, just like the Python. Colt built bullseye revolvers, as that was the popular sport in the era. The later Trooper Mk III and Mk V were OK, except for the same issue of grip size. The Mk V intended to fix that, but after cutting down the frame size to “near perfect” Colt undid that effort by adding wrap around wood grips. They never figured out cops wanted a revolver that fit the hand better for DA use. Cops stopped using the one-hand-in-the-pocket, thumb cocking method of shooting decades earlier. Colt just did not get it.

    • “Bring back the Python!”

      *Colt engineers all simultaneously make this face*

      https://mustbethistalltoride.files.wordpress.com/2014/11/tommy-lee-jones-face.jpg

      • greasyjohn

        You people keep spouting this in complete ignorance of a simple truth: a whole generation of people would buy a Python without knowing or caring about its hallowed trigger, its triple lockup or its royal blue finish.

        Pietta started doing it. Lots of people were excited.

        • Well, sure, I agree that you could sell Python-Like-Objects to people, but they wouldn’t be actual Pythons.

          • Kivaari

            Colt DA revolvers like the Python were expensive, very accurate when fired SA and were engineered to be used as a single action target gun. As soon as you go to DA, Colt revolvers stink. Colt never learned how to make a solid revolver that fit the hands of MOST
            Take a Python and shoot it SA It is hard to beat. Try rapid fire DA and except for a rare few they are hard to hit with. A couple reason. It’s too large. The Colt trigger system stacks. Groups suffer. Give the same shooter a S&W M15 or M19 using .38 Special ammo and all of a sudden everyone has better scores. The snake is heavy s well.

          • Jerry Sullivan

            Just as these are NOT actual M16A1s… they are knockoffs.. and generally undesirable to anyone over 45.. so, Colt makes 1500 hoping for instant collectability. BOOHAH! What was the nomenclature on the old civilian Colts w/ triangle forearms and 1:12 twist bbls? Can’t think of it …. dang gettin old!!

          • Kivaari

            The rifle illustrated is not the M16A1, but a M16 look alike. Notice the rear sling swivel and three-pronged flash hider? The A1 corrected those errors. The rear swivel was fragile and there was no compartment for cleaning gear. The three-pronged flash hider both snagged on brush but funneled water into the bore. The A1 improvements, were improvements.

          • Jerry Sullivan

            since you already KNOW IT ALL further discourse will be unnecessary.

          • Kivaari

            Obviously, I read the book first. This very early pattern is an interesting link in the history of the black rifle. I’d take the M16A1 as it is a better rifle.

          • Kivaari

            I am way older than 55, and I’d like an M16A1 if they weren’t $20,000. Instead of an NFA rifle, I’d like a properly marked Colt in semi-auto. I’d even be happy with an H&R marked one. I wouldn’t buy the M16 early pattern, some might. I suspect they will all sell out fast.

          • Jerry Sullivan

            I’ve had a few SP1s which were pretty much what I carried in RVN save for the absent selector. The nostalgia was better than the reality of the weapons function. Now I’m a gas tappet/piston believer if for no other reason than the ease of cleaning. The 3 prong C-Ration case opener was still issued at my departure.

          • Kivaari

            M16

      • Emir Parkreiner

        Does Colt know that they actually have engineers? I’d love to see Colt announce something other than another AR-15, 1911, or bankruptcy.

    • Juanito Ibañez, TopCop1988

      “Many have seen Rick Grime’s Colt Python. The Python would fly off the shelf along with other revolvers.”

      Just like the S&W Model 29 .44 Magnum revolvers did after “Dirty Harry” came out.

    • Anon. E Maus

      The Python is super expensive and has some inherent problems to it’s lockwork (it’s flimsy).

      If Colt is going back to the revolver game, they’d be better pressed to remake the Colt Trooper, as a utility revolver, and then some manner of compact snub nose.

  • Volk

    Only 1500? Guess I probably won’t be able to get one.

  • Nashvone

    Only 1500…with Colt’s known outrageous sticker pricing of common market guns means they’ll be marketed to the “More money than sense” crowd.

  • ARCNA442

    Why does Colt continue to insist on doing these extremely small runs of special guns rather than simply adding them to their catalogue? Any quality factory M16A1, much less a Colt, would be awesome, but with only 1500 being made, what are the chances of finding one at a decent price?

    • Rabies

      Doesn’t Fulton Armory make a M16A1?

      • Evan

        Yes.

      • Mc Cain

        Yes, but it is Fulton Armory…’nuff said.

        • Norm

          Does Fulton have a bad reputation? Have you owned one of their firearms?

          • ChierDuChien

            In the old days, Colt had a less than stellar reputation and was investigated over some allegedly crude techniques used to make, test and adjust their military rifles. An old article in American Rifleman back in the late sixties covered it. Even Ralph Nader got involved.

          • DrewN

            Fulton’s are very, very well made and not as expensive as you might think. I think their A1 is priced comparably to this one. I have an AR10 a Garand and a Carbine from them and all 3 are fantastic shooters.

          • Norm

            Thanks. I’ve l would looked at their firearms for years, on the website, but I’ve never seen one up close. I’d like at least a retro upper in 1/12, but those are hard to find. I tried a green mountain 1/12 barrel on an upper build, and it was rubbish. 3 tight rounds, and then hand size at 25 yards. Never again. I’ll see what colt wants for the whole thing and go from there.

    • Budogunner

      I think the target market is mostly collectors as, let’s be honest, many improvements were needed and have been made since these early models. As such, large production runs would decrease value. Without scarcity these would just be outdated reproductions they couldn’t charge much for.

      Truly authentic reproductions wouldn’t serve well in high power competitions, but there are already companies filling that niche so I guess that’s not what they were going for.

      • Harry’s Holsters

        I think they could charge more than you think. The price increase is going to come on the resale market and not improve Colt’s bottom line.

      • Bill

        It’s ironic that considering the whining and moaning over early, heck even late, AR “problems” that people will snap these up.

        • HSR47

          Put it this way: Have you ever come across something old, perhaps only a prototype that was displayed at a trade show (e.g. a concept car) that you think is so cool that you’d want to own one if you could find one that you could afford?

          That’s basically what the retro AR15 market is: People wanting to have rifles that look and function like the neat rifles that were little more than toolroom prototypes that we always see in historic documentation. The originals are extremely scarce, and prohibitively expensive to purchase, thus the interest in cloning them.

          We don’t want them because they’re rare, we want them because they’re interesting.

          • Bill

            I had a Corvair, so I know “interesting.”

          • Juanito Ibañez, TopCop1988

            🙂

          • Raginzerker

            That comment I think won it for me today

          • Kivaari

            Remember those little bronze fuel filters? They plugged up fast. They cars in out easily, but were real fun to drive.

          • Bill

            Great for going in the snow, not so great for trying to stop on a slippery surface. I mainly remember trying to balance carburetors, the dash mounted shifter and watching the ground fly by through the rust hole between my feet.

          • Kivaari

            I remember .22 LR silencers being made from those bronze filters. On in awhile a “loose hair” of bronze would appear in the bullets flight path. Very quiet. No, I don’t have the paper. It was floating around “cop circles” 30 years ago.

          • Bill

            And I had a Cosworth Vega-ditto.

        • Kivaari

          Except, if you really know the subject you know the early rifles were actually quite good. /Remember much of the problems came fro ammunition and ignorance by command to promote it as self-cleaning. Whoever came up with that idea should have seen prison from the inside out.

          • fasteddiez

            The idiot from Division who introduced this loser rifle to us said you did not have to clean it as much as an M-14. He said the Cong called it the Black Deacon????? he said this three times. Maybe black demon, in any case the local VC had no use for em’. The idiot also told us the weapon did not rust. I think this propaganda came from the manufacturer. When I returned to the Corps in 1980, the M-16 model had none of the 60’s version problems. I was told by a Warrant Officer who ran a range in Okinawa in 1967, that targets at the 500 yard line had some of the projectiles sticking in hallways, while the other shots went straight through. This sounds like no sound quality control at the ammo factory.

          • Kivaari

            It was not Colt making the claims. Colt built them to specification (ml-spec – wasn’t as good). The powder issue was a direct result of the Army weapons board. Colt built them to use IMR powders, and the army wanted WCC ball powder. Using the IMR the rifles ran at the specified cyclic rate. No pre-mature wear and no broken parts from being over-driven. The IMR powder was cleaner burning. WCC ball. The heavy dose of calcium carbonate in the residue from the ball powder, led to the “heavy fouling”. Was it problem with the rifle? NO. Not issuing cleaning kits was a monumental failure on the pats of command. Individual soldiers should have taken notice, and cleaned their rifles. Getting cheap Outer’s aluminum rods was better than not having one. Getting a steel rod was smart.
            All those issues were addressed in the congressional hearings and we saw the A1. There were not a lot of issues with the M16A1 other than length and sight. I would not have adopted the sight as used on the A2/3. It is too complex and more fragile. Change the apertures to those of the A2. like the Daniel’s Defense A1.5.

          • fasteddiez

            Good info on the problems (Colt vs Armed forces). Wasn’t the lack of a chromium chamber not an issue?

          • Kivaari

            Yes! It was exacerbated by not cleaning and lubing the rifle. When you send any metal equipment into a wet environment and not instruct people in the proper use and care you end up with problems. Most post-WW2 guns were made with plated chambers and bores. Except, the M16, which the top brass promoted as being something it wasn’t. The M16 is a fine rifle. The newer improvements just make it a great rifle. One thing I have watched over the last 50+ years is gun people often know damned little about guns. TFB is doing a great deal of education, by some really smart writers. Yet, you cannot make stubborn people accept facts, as the bar stool stories seem to have much more backing. Since “My uncles, good buddy was in Vietnam, and his rifle jammed”.

          • glenn cheney

            Best overall synopsis of Whizz kids gone awry as I’ve heard. Congrats on keeping it real.
            I commented the other day and directed a poster to retro/vintage parts. I’ve wanted a “retro” for years, it’s my generation’s gun, although my trigger time was 1911’s, Garand’s, and Thompsons…
            Thought you’d like to know, several weeks back the madmen in the Ordinance kitchen ran up the flagpole the latest rec’ on bullet, the 6.5, .264…..I saw a peek at the platform, looks like an AR, and AK, and some exotic from NATO/Euro got together for a three-some and that was the product when you walked in Monday a.m.
            It’ll take getting visually used to.
            AnyWHO, I grabbed a box of .264 LBC’s with target crowns and threaded….I just bought two sets of handguards, they’ll be cerakoted Graphite Black, H-146 color code.
            I’ll use new A2 duty stock, the combat ambi-grip, and upper receiver with carrying handle….only difference is, it’ll have a nitros oxide kit under the hood…..264 LBC, 6.5 Grendel. Spread the word, Uncle Vladimir is slupping under 30 cent a poke 6.5 in WPA, clean burning, not Wolf’s powder, and 100 FMJ out of steel casings. Other than .22’s, Grendel is now the cheapest to shoot I know of.
            It’ll catch a 7.62 NATO at 700 yards and pass it at 40% less recoil in a 123 gr. Senar bullet out of Lapua brass and the propellants I forget for the moment. My retro will look the same with dust cover closed, (NiB BCG/bolt) the grip is a hint, and the stock looks right, but new….
            She’ll punch paper at 800-1,200 yards if you can shoot that well, but we needed more terminal’s out past 500 for the porcus delecti.
            We maintain radio silence but monitor…Lords a’ LRRP’g….I’ll be following your posts. BTW, Bolts 9310 only, BCG’s 8620 only, just say no anytime to Carpenter 158.
            Many are now re-configuring from match grade eye candy 41R stainless, to 4150 CMV and steel gas blocks, melonited gas tubes and the bolt steel is most important, 9310’s and 8620’s, and we now have a high heat tolerant high rate of semi auto fire or full auto….Personally, I’ll prefer semi auto and three round burst.
            UUUUUUUUU–RAHHHHHHH………………………….

          • Kivaari

            If it were not for declining health, I would get a 6.5 C to test. I have another surgery coming soon. Right shoulder, so nothing for 6 weeks from the day they cut.

          • glenn cheney

            She’s got the BC’s….510 or better….it’s the bullet and the necked down 7.62×39….sweet to shoot, try one when you rehab…Gettin’ old is a Hitch, lol….that too, best of luck with the cut man…don’t rush the rehab, have fam. member who did and was worse for the experience…tendons…the Dr. had same procedure a year later, and re-configured his post op directives for patients and rehab staff alike.
            That’s your intel packet.

          • Kivaari

            It helped motivate me to buy that little Beretta CX4 carbine. It’s like a .22 for recoil.

          • Anon. E Maus

            How often do you hear the story about “my uncle used an enemy AK in Vietnam because he didn’t like his M16” ? I imagine there’s a lot of exaggeration to that, I hear about that one more than how much that must have actually happened.

          • Kivaari

            Only a few times have I hear it. Of the REAL Vietnam combat vets I know, none of them used AKs on patrol. They had them at established camps, but not in the field. There may have been real spec ops guys using them. A couple real force recon guys I know never did.

          • The Brigadier

            Not really. We all picked up AKs or obtained M14s. Our field commanders ignored it because they did the same thing. Top brass would scream, but they weren’t in the bush. AKs, that brutish little boar of a rifle, never jammed and while it didn’t fire as fast as my M16A1 on full rock and roll, it always fired. So yeah Anon. it was the rule and not the exception. We used the M16 or M14s until they failed and then brought out the AKs. We didn’t mind the extra ammo load.

          • CommonSense23

            So how did you supply your AKs with enough ammo.

          • Kivaari

            There was still a problem in the 80s. While in the NG soldiers were still saying don’t use any oil on the rifle. I had to reeducate them. They did not understand why rifles needed to be lubricated. They would come out of boot camp and AIT being told “don’t oil the rifle”. Even those vets that had served on active duty in dangerous postings did not understand the value of oil. Bolt carrier groups were always bone dry until “reeducation camps” fixed the issue. Sergeants that caused problems in Vietnam passed on the bad training to generations of soldiers. Look how TFB contributors lube the rifles. Even gunked up, they work. Run them dry and they stop working.

          • fasteddiez

            Kivaari
            Well the USMC personnel were nowhere near as uninformed as the young initial training troops you mention. To think that their superiors would be as clueless that a weapon firing rapid single shot or full auto would not need lubrication given the friction of the moving parts is baffling. As I said before, the coordinating SNCO of the rifle trade off told us we did not need to lubricate the weapon as much as the M-14. If anyone had told us that the rifle did not need lubricant and cleaning, they would have been ignored. I believe that the dead Jarheads whose weapons were inoperable due to fouling and lack of lubricant and cleaning did not take care of the weapon as much as they should have. The cleaning kits came with the rifles, and this was
            in February 1967. Reading the book about the US Army Cav’s battle at Ia Drang in 1965, there was mention of the M-16’s similar problems then, (that Army unit came directly from the US with that rifle.

          • Kivaari

            By 67 the complaints had been heard. Why do you think the M16A1 has a place for cleaning gear and the M16 did not? Marines have always been better riflemen. Army teaching into the 80s was still filled with the “don’t put oil on your rifle”. Like I said, I had to retrain them. It’s amazing that the rifles worked, once oiled.

          • Anon. E Maus

            A problem I’ve seen cited in sources a few times is that before the chambers were chromed on the early M16 rifles, cartridges could swell after being left in the chamber for a time (allegedly due to the tropical heat and moisture), making extraction very difficult, was this a problem you experienced or heard of in your time?

          • Kivaari

            It was the rust on the surface of the chamber and/or pits into the chamber walls The cases always expand upon firing. The brass flows around the rust spots and into pits, thus anchoring the case. The heat may have added a little to that, but in a rusted chamber in sub-freezing air, it will still do it. Abused M1 and M14 rifles will do it. Even a common Mauser bolt rifle will have extraction troubles.

          • CommonSense23

            The lack of chrome chamber was the single biggest issue with the M16. Once that was fixed the majority of the problems went away.

          • Anon. E Maus

            I would honestly argue that the cleaning was only a partial problem, the flimsy magazines and the ball powder probably caused the most malfunctions, either through misfeeds, or the action running out of sync due to the higher RPM.

            Personally, I think the sights as used on the A2 and A3 were fine, though I love the look of the A1 sight/handle, they’re not quite as practical.

          • Kivaari

            The VC needed ammunition to make the rifles useful. Once they captured enough ammo from ARVN (or bought from sympathetic ARVN soldiers) hey used the M16 quite a bit. I know that having a choice between an M16A1 and an SKS was a no-brainer, even for the VC. I didn’t see where many US special operators picked up SKS carbines for combat. A few used the AKs, but it was not as good as a maintained M16.

          • fasteddiez

            Not to hammer this subject into the ground, the AK’s were useful for some in the Marine reconnaissance troops in that if compromised, the evading Marines could use AK rifles because of the exact sound of the weapon could confuse them enough to think they had friendlies firing on them. I guess the procurement of the AK ammo problem was similar to the VC’s, but the battles in I Corps were increasingly against the NVA. Again, thanks for the in depth information.

          • Kivaari

            Using AKs was not encouraged as we were salting VC stockpiles with explosive rounds. Finding a cache of ammo, may have some special rounds we put there. Ask some of your VN era buddies if they ever saw a VC rifle explode. I knew a couple that witnessed the thing. A very good book was out 20+ years ago that outlined this. Like returning vets, you did not bring ammo home, for your trophy SKS.

          • Anon. E Maus

            Ah yes, operation “Fortunate Son”, though I hear that wasn’t as widespread as one would imagine.

            I know that occasionally, MACVSOG would employ captured AK rifles and RPD machineguns on clandestine missions, but they had American manufactured ammunition (produced by Winchester, but without markings for plausible deniability), and that they would avoid Vietnamese/Chinese ammunition due to Fortunate Son.

            The impression I get is that most of the time when American soldiers captured an SKS, AK or what have you, it was as a trophy, and not for field use, I know there are a number of transferable AK and Type-56 rifles on the NFA registry which were Vietnam bringbacks (some brought back legally, others, not so legal)

          • Kivaari

            The report was also given as a reason to not use AKs. The thinking being a friendly unit could think you are VC, and call strikes onto your position. Like a deer hunter making sound shots.

          • Anon. E Maus

            If we’re talking early AR-15 rifles, the big problems were magazines, ammunition and cleaning.

            The
            ammo was too hot, running the gun a few hundred RPM too fast, so not
            only did this wear a lot on the poor guns, they couldn’t keep up with
            themselves, the hammer could accidentally follow, or the extractor
            couldn’t keep up, what have you. This problem can be fixed either with
            lighter ammo, or a heavier buffer, the Army chose the latter, as far as
            I’m told.

            Original magazines were designed to be loaded with
            20rds at the factory, fired once, and then left, just like stripper
            clips, but that turned out to be too expensive, so they got recycled,
            problem being that they were designed to be cheap and disposable, so
            refilling them usually didn’t give you very good results, forcing you to
            download capacity by one or two rounds with each load cycle to ensure
            that you would actually have feeding, 20 from the factory, then 18, and
            16, and so on

            Magazines were redone and made in thicker, stronger
            aluminum and much sturdier springs so that they could actually be
            reused properly, then the later the 30rd mags got adopted, which
            featured much superior feed geometry on top of that.

            With
            the pre-A1 models, there were no instruction or supplies on cleaning,
            with the M16A1, a cleaning kit was included in a compartment in the
            stock, as well as soldiers being issued the instructions on how they
            would be used (in the form of a comic book), the bore and chamber being
            chromed is also a frequently toted upgrade, resisting dirt, and
            assisting in extraction.

            By the time the M16A1 was the standard, most of the problems of the rifle were solved, and it should probably be pointed out that some of the problems with the rifles weren’t inherent to the design,
            but rather changes and “features” that were done during Army
            development, the original trials rifles already had chromed bores and
            chambers as standard, a feature which was cut for cost (no doubt on
            McNamarra’s behalf)

          • Kivaari

            Remember the very first magazines were designed to be dropped and then stepped on to ruin them. That was bad for a couple reasons. First they were made to crush, second the VC could take wrinkles out of anything.

          • The Brigadier

            It was a mistake made by the arrogant Secy of Defense McNamara under President Kennedy. He stated, “If Dr. Stoner wanted the rifle to have a cleaning kit he would have provided one.” Stoner replied to the published comment, “I thought the Army would provide one typical of its needs so I didn’t provide one.”

            When McNamara saw the response he realized his arrogance kept him from pursuing the jamming problem in the A1 model and he was the one responsible for the 10,000 infantrymen who died when their rifles jammed up. He was haunted by the memory of his arrogance and the resulting deaths and he left government service. Prior to his death he wrote about his guilt over this.

          • Kivaari

            There were nowhere near 10,000 US service members killed due to jamming M16 rifles. 25% of our 58,000 deaths were fratricide. Much of that due to poorly delivered arty and aerial weapons. Too many from friendly rifle fire.

    • Harry’s Holsters

      I understand why they are only doing a run of 1500 but I also don’t understand why they would limit their options like that. They could easily sell 1500 per variant per year and the market would allow for increases in price on the secondary market.

      • Reginald Pettifogger

        I guess I’ll just keep my “SP” with a # lower than 1500.

        • Harry’s Holsters

          Lucky Bastard!

    • Kelly Jackson

      Because 99% of A RHHHHH Fifty dot come can’t understand why an exact reproduction of a stock in aluminum costs more than their plastic fantastic Mag Pul piece.

    • Jerry Sullivan

      I’d say they want INSTANTLY COLLECT-ABILITY and therefore MAXIMUM $$$$$ for a 60 year old design. Amazing what limited availability will do for an otherwise HO-HUM firearm!

      • Kivaari

        Hi-Hum depends upon the viewer. Put the best piece of Weatherby Mk V rifles in front of me, and I likely wouldn’t even look at it, let alone pick it up. To me they have no value. Put an old M70 Winchester in 7x57mm or 7.65mm and I’d be impressed. They are hunting rifles, and I have no interest in them, unless they are classics.

        • Jerry Sullivan

          way different man… these are NOT old, original collectible arms and are based on a rather problematic action & certainly not comparable to today’s Stoner-based weapons.There are some original Colt civilian NSF pieces just like the M16 of old (sorry, the nomenclature eludes me) and they are a cool collectors piece, but not something I would AGAIN hang my life on.

          • Kivaari

            Actually the AR15 – M16 (early) were NOT problematic. The rifles performed as specified in “mil-spec”. People forget what went on. The AR15 with 1:14 twist was too slow, so when fired in arctic conditions the bullet was unstable. When changed to 1:12 the rifle was accurate and stable in artic conditions. The AR15- M16 when used with the specified IMR powder functioned properly. The correct cyclic rate showed the rifles when tested to mil-spec at Colt, performed well. Why wouldn’t they since they were built to spec and fired with the correct ammo. The rifle did not have a chrome lined bore, which was army spec. Regardless of them being advised that chrome lining was a good thing, yet the army said it cost money. So they didn’t do so.
            Then in the infinite wisdom of the army they decided that they wanted Winchester to load ammo using ball powder. Powder that had a totally incompatible pressure curve, and had too much calcium carbonate. That is hardly a problem of the rifles construction and performance when used with the correct ammo. That change in ammunition specifications was an army command failure. When they made the change, they did not inform Colt that a redesign was needed. Colt warned the Army. The powder pushed the rate of fire up to 1200 RPM. Was that a faulty rifle design? Hardly. During the initial artic testing the “armorers” in Alaska decided they did not need to follow any technical manuals, and they unilaterally decided to take it completely apart, including replacing the sight tower hood pins (those special tapered pins) with common carpentry nails. Then said the rifle didn’t work right. I wonder why.
            Then it get sent to combat. WITHOUT cleaning equipment or manuals. The troops being told it is a self cleaning rifle. Please, where are there self-cleaning rifles? Was that a rifle design or construction failure? Well, NO.
            In Vietnam the chambers rusted and pitted. I wonder why. No cleaning gear and no sane commander would do so. Where were the sergeants, except those that hated the whole idea.
            When congress investigated they found that the most blatant failures were in one unit. It turns out that unit, didn’t take care of any gear issued to them. Even the trucks were in disrepair. Poor chain of command. Where were the sergeants and LTs?
            The perpetual claim that the M16 including the superior M16A1 were poor rifles is simply deflecting blame from the senior command of the US Army. Individual soldiers obviously were not very smart if they didn’t take care of their rifles. Look how a well cleaned M1903 or M1 rifle, neither having chrome-lined bores, performed when soldiers cleaned them. Those used primarily corrosive ammunition.
            There are good rifles out and about. The M16 family is among the finest battle rifles ever issued in any army anywhere on earth.

          • Jerry Sullivan

            whoa… just like in Vietnam, how did you know? Not problematic at all… well, that’s just WRONG DUDE! Read another book…

          • Kivaari

            Hey, specialist. Did you know that the early M16, like this replica AR15 was in Vietnam before the M16A1? So, yes, it is like the M16 before the Army redesigned the rifle. After getting ripped over the coals by congress the Army went to Colt and asked that the rifle be changed by adding a new flash hider, fully chrome lining the bore (not just the chamber the army first wanted)m put a stronger rear sling swivel and the trap door for a cleaning kit. I guess you never read the right books. Or even read the great material on TFB. All of this is well documented over the last 56 years. Try Ezell’s, “The Great Rifle Controversy”. There you get the whole CONTROVESY over the M14 and M16-M16A1-M16A2 and those nice little carbines. Too many people are like you, under informed. If you were moderately interested in the history of the rifle you would know Colt IS providing an early Vietnam era M16 copy. Then you would know what went on behind the changes, and why those changes were good. Some say there is no need for the forward assist. Maybe true. I still like them. Why, are you so negative on such an interesting subject?
            I suspect I’ve had a bit more hands-on with guns like these.

          • Jerry Sullivan

            your arrogance is palpable. What do you know about my 70 years on earth and my experiences with ANYTHING? You run right out and buy a Colt repro M16 if you wish… 1499 other fools will do likewise. My name is Jerry, my military status is “retired” …I do not post under some bullshit nom de plume.. adios KIVAARI.

          • Kivaari

            Well, Jerry you have a year on me. I’d like an Colt M16A1. I can’t afford one. Now, I met a lot of stupid people in both the Navy and army. Especially, if small arms were discussed. I may not be retired military, bit I am a retired cop that happened to have also served in the navy and Army. I’d have stayed longer except for injuries received ILOD. Now, I also have been in the gun business for 50 years. I support Colt building these era-correct rifles. Why, you think potential customers for period correct rifles are fools is a bit arrogant on your part. My thinking is Colt is not making enough of them. If you are like most service members, not in special ops, I’d guess you know about as much as an E1 standing on the yellow footprints. That’s fine. I just do know a bit about the rifles. Now I never used one in combat since all we did was by remote control thanks to computer assisted fire control. We did have time to talk about small arms. I don’t know how many experts, even GMG, didn’t know squat. Like the “fact” they said the Russians copied the 7.62mm NATO so they could use our ammo in their guns. Funny stuff. Then they assured us that the AK47 could use NATO rounds. Even when I put examples of each round in their hands they said I was wrong. That is pretty much what the average soldier knew about our rifles and machineguns. Lot’s of old vets, like myself, have done quite a bit outside of the military. Where we studied and used many more guns than any service member where gun exposure is quite limited.
            It is always funny to listen to the same old hate laid on the M16 family of rifles. While the M14 was the king of battle. Except the facts showed otherwise. The M14s were very troubled. Enough so, that the army desperately wanted a new rifle within a couple of years. The Army, screwed up by not listening to Stoner and Colt. Don’t knock them if you don’t know the history.
            I bet you think the .45 hits men in the pinky finger and they flip through the air. Lots of vets think such things. Being a vet doesn’t instill great wisdom.

          • fasteddiez

            My main gripe with the M-14 was that the rifle was totally inaccurate on full auto, due to the muzzle climb. the 2nd Bn. 4th Marines issued all M-14s with a selector, thus encouraging some “new meats” to go A for Awful until convinced to do otherwise. If you could stabilize the weapon and press down on the front, you could mitigate the problem somewhat. However, during a patrol/walk in the sun a sudden need for quick reaction shooting some of your rounds would climb. Lastly, I saw a Youtube video of a modern Navy Riverine type shooting an M-14 with a Muzzle brake, and there was no muzzle climb.

          • Kivaari

            The M14 has serious issues. Not only accuracy on FA, which was a stupid idea, but on slow fire. Reliability was poor. Now, if you listen to the guys making claims to the contrary, they must not have read what the army found. M14s was a poorly thought out design. It is the wrong size, wrong caliber for individuals (great for machineguns), being too long, too heavy and didn’t get better until the 1990s. As much as people love shooting M1As on the range, they don’t appreciate what MOST soldiers need daily. The M4 fulfils that need. WE do issue specialty rifles to complement the M4. Just like we used specialty weapons to augment the M14 in Vietnam.
            The Army was flat told that if they could not fix the major deficiencies in the M14 that the DOD was going to make the change. TOO BAD, they did not coordinate the effort. We ended up with a great rifle, with the wrong ammunition (not caliber), and Colt told the Army what was wrong. Colt said use IMR powder and chrome line the bore. That would have solved 90% of the issues. The cleaning gear fixed he rest.

          • Anon. E Maus

            The M14 is a bit romanticized, people think of the power of the 7.62mm NATO, the feel of the action, the old fashioned wooden stock, they don’t stop to consider that 7.62mm NATO is way more power than what a GI could put to good use in their service rifle, that the action was open to dirt, that the stock wasn’t ideal for handling recoil in rapid fire, or how the rifle, magazines and ammunition is heavy, a combat load of 100rds wasn’t fun to lug around in the tropics.

          • Anon. E Maus

            You’re basically thinking of the M15, which essentially was the M14 if someone thought “Hey, it could do the BAR’s job!”

            Terrible excuse for a Squad Automatic Weapon, the M60 wasn’t perfect, but there’s no wonder that it won over the M15.
            Most full powered battle rifles are a chore to control in full-auto, the G3, the FAL, battle rifles are best utilized in semi-auto.

          • Anon. E Maus

            The M14 gets a lot of praise it doesn’t quite deserve, as far as I’m concerned, it was far from a practical rifle in my opinion, like a WW2 era rifle with some upgrades, it’s pretty much just a better M1 Garand, but that was hardly gonna cut it in the Cold War era.

            And I’ll agree, veteran status doesn’t mean anything, some of the dumbest people I’ve ever talked to have been veterans, the amount of times I’ve heard someone say “Gun control is good, I know, I was in the army” as if it was a qualifier, it’s nothing short of comical.

          • Kivaari

            Jerry, Alpha Mike Foxtrot to you buddy.

          • Kivaari

            It’s the first word of Finn I learned from my mom. It means “rifle”. I used to collect Finn, Russian, Soviet, Czech, Polish and other European small arms. I never bought many WW2 German stuff, I hated the symbolism. I can ignore Soviet era stuff, at least they were our buddies during the War.

          • Jerry Sullivan

            OK “Rifle”.. if you like the Colt knock-off, then buy one. 1499 others will do the same! Real pre-ban SP1s can be had for $1500 or so, and then you have the real deal! A bonafide collectors piece that will still make you smile on the range and actually retain its’ value is a much better item TO ME and indeed I’ve had a few SP1s. I carried an M16 in Vietnam (along with an M79) and still enjoy the 5.56 platform though not the gas impingement system,so I opt for piston systems.. Your inability to STFU is remarkable, so…once again, AMF! We’re done now..

          • Kivaari

            Had you not called all those that desire such rifles fools, you’d be better received. Then you can’t differentiate what happened with the M16 confusing what caused what and why. You could have learned something, but not from we fools that like these rifles. I’ve had more than a few SP1s and CAR15s, as well as a new Colt M4 Commando.

          • Kivaari

            So, do you own an M1 rifle or an M1A? If you have an M1A, why? It isn’t a real M14.

          • Kivaari

            You missed it didn’t you? The rifles Colt delivered t the Army were within spec, and when used with the proper ammunition were not a problem. It was not the rifle, but the army brass that screwed up. There’s a difference, that seems to elude a person like you. Why, yes in Vietnam and elsewhere the early M16s did have issues caused by command choices. As you missed, Colt delivered in spec rifles. They worked until idiots changed ammo without testing. Even after Colt told them NO, YOU CAN’T DO THAT. Colt told them what was going to happen, but the army didn’t listen until kids started dying and moms and dads started complaining to congress. What was found? Well, the M16 is a great rifle that the army screwed up. Colt told them what needed to be done and it mostly related to powder. cleaning gear, manuals and a heavier buffer. Blame the generals that took kick back money for changing to Winchester powder. Was the rifle at fault? NO.
            Once the M16A1 came on line, with adequate training (comic book) and a sergeant with a brain the rifles worked. You have not learned to see the difference between a Mil-Spec rifle using non-approved powder in a rifle where the sergeants were not smart enough to teach their men to take care of their gear.

          • Anon. E Maus

            You don’t know what you’re talking about, A1 carry handle sights, fixed to the receiver, slab-side receivers, early brass deflectors, early forward-assists, three-pronged flash-hiders, triangular handguards, waffle pattern mags, the Colt Moderator, there’s so many of the features and lack of features on the old rifles which have an aesthetic you never see anywhere else.

            A “GAU5” variant might not be as practical as a modern M4A1 SOPMOD, but it sure as hell isn’t without it’s own charm.

          • Kivaari

            Anon, Jerry thinks we are fools to want such things. No one wants a WW1 M1911 or WW2 M1911A2. We better tell all those companies selling such guns to stop, as no one should want any of them.

      • Anon. E Maus

        The AR-15 is one of the best rifle designs in the world in my opinion, and the older one has an unmistakable charm that you just don’t get these days.

      • Kivaari

        Yep, no one would want to buy a replica black powder rifle, or Winchester 66, 73, 76, 86, 92 or Colt 1849, 1850,1851, 1860, 1863 or M1 carbine, or M1 rifle since they aren’t real. Just like this M16 replica. No one would want one, as they are fools. Really?

  • Low production volume = bummer

  • Rabies

    So is there going to be new production furniture?

    • Yes.

      • Twilight sparkle

        Are they getting it from the same place as Troy?

  • Twilight sparkle

    I was hoping for a larger production run to have a more reasonable price

  • Jeesh Colt… it is 2016. We know you are always behind on trends and the latest gear, but do you still think this is 1963….?

    What next? A rerelease of the Double Eagle?

    [/humor]

    • datimes

      I for one would love to see the re-release of the double eagle. Money would have actual value.

      • Was gonna say SCAMP to increase the obscurity, but then it would have been too unrealistic to be a joke. 🙂

        • Bill

          Try for the All-American.

      • Red McCloud

        I’ve been lobbying on a small scale to get the Double Eagle back into production. It was a fantastic pistol that failed due to the disastrous launch of the Series 80 model of it, and by the time they fixed all the issues with it for the Series 90s it was too late.

        • datimes

          I was thinking more in terms of this.

  • Joe Moore

    Gotta start saving for the 607. I wonder if they’ll make it a factory SBR or add a pinned MB of some kind.

    • Kivaari

      They make a nice M4 SBR now. A classic with out the $400 FET would be good. The SBR gets its own $200 and that reportedly poor suppressor needs another $200.

  • Mc Cain

    I think they could sell a LOT of these if they get the price into the realm of rationality and market the heck out of them, “The original AR-15” … etc.

    • Harry’s Holsters

      Agreed. I’d like to see them with no limit on the run. 1500 is a lot of guns but they will be gone quickly.

    • HSR47

      I’m not sure about full-scale production, but it would be nice to see them offered in quantities sufficient to quench the thirst for retro guns.

      Glock/Lipseys/Vickers have sold 10,000 new production RTF2 Glock pistols in the last two years, and from what I see, there seems to be more enthusiasm for retro AR15-pattern guns than for Glock pistols with RTF2 frames.

  • Jack Morris

    Oh my god I want a colt stamped XM16 lower receiver sooo bad. I wish they weren’t doing such a small run. This would be the ultimate final touch on my vintage m16 build.

  • Ed

    And now we need them to remake the Colt 4x scopes again!! Face it it was the original ACOG.

    • You can get them from chinese sites all day, if you plan on using it just at the range.

    • Kivaari

      They were junk then, just like the $50 copies today. Probably made in the same factory using the same poor quality materials. If you want the look and don’t care about quality there are plenty to be had.

  • Norm

    Did Colt indicate when they’re going to offer the new rifles?

  • Edeco

    Neat, glad its happening as a matter of principle. Unless they start selling just parts, doesnt help me personally: Stag was there for me when I needed a basic AR, and if I get a second AR I’ll have weirder expectations for probably lower cost than the Colts.

  • Big Daddy

    I carried a Colt M16A1 for a few years. I’ll take my DDM4V5 any day.

    • ostiariusalpha

      Yeah, I prefer my v5 for actual go to gun use, but nothing’s stopping me from getting a NoDak Spud M16 receiver set, retro furniture, a 20″ pencil barrel with a duck bill flash hider, and a Mattie Mattel logo engraved on the magwell for funsies.

      • Big Daddy

        I’ll never forget the A1s at Ft. Knox armor school…..not Colts and the worst M16s ever, the Colts I had weren’t bad. All kinds of M16s at Knox, Harrigton & Richardson, GM Hydo something or other. The receivers wiggled, terrible fitment. If one AR of mine is not tight it drives me crazy going back to those Ft. Knox days. I do like the Gen 2 Aero Precision receivers the lower has a screw to adjust the tightness. My other franken ARs are mixed and matched to find a good fit.

        • ostiariusalpha

          My Mega Arms GTR-3H lower has the same feature, but when I really want to eliminate any receiver rattle, I’ll apply an abrasion-resistant elastomer to the lower receiver. I have a dummy pin that mates the receivers a little higher that normal (about .001″), and spray some mold release on the upper receiver where it will contact the wet elastomer on the lower. When it dries, I replace the dummy pin with an actual takedown pin, and now they mate tightly with no wobble. It’s a little more work intensive than tightening a screw against the upper’s takedown pin lug, but I find it even more stable for precision shooting.

        • Gunner4guy

          Maybe it was the cache` of having a ‘Colt’. Seemed like every newly reporting troopie wanted one and if the Armorer had it, they’d issue it. Thus the H&R’s were generally the last to be issued out which was fine with me….I thought they seemed tighter(maybe better built or tighter tolerances????).

  • JSmath

    I just want to the rifle-length triangular handguard, tbh.

  • Steven Ling

    How about a new run of Pythons?

  • Treyh007

    I would love to have the rifle version….. I’ve always liked the looks of it!

  • AssKicker47

    Hopefully it does jam like the original verso xD.

  • Avid Fan

    Ah, the Colt Python. Mah Pap’s Py thon shot the wings off a gnat at a mile and a haf. Gimme an effing break. I’m so glad I was able to turn mine into a couple of really nice useful weapons.
    Somebody should buy Colt and turn it into a gun manufacturer.

    • Kivaari

      Yep!

  • Winter

    I had a very, very early SP1 many years ago but it was stolen. I absolutely loved that gun, it still makes me sick to this day when I think about it. I got pretty excited when I heard that Colt was reproducing the early models I immediately started thinking about what I had to sell so I could get another. After reading the story and seeing that the production numbers would be so low I realized that getting one would likely be very difficult and the prices would probably be way higher than I anticipated and likely out of my range. I’ll be watching how it plays out but I can’t compete with the collector crowd so dunno.

  • jerry young

    will there be one that doesn’t have that old 3 prong flash suppressor? I was in Nam in 71-72 and ours had a ring around the end that was the M16A1, the popular story was the military put the ring on the end to stop soldiers from using it to open their beer but truthfully it was because sticks and debris would catch in the suppressor and that stopped that from happening, I still like like the old M16’s but unless they make enough of these to get the price within reason and make them available enough for the average person to just go out and buy one I don’t see me getting one of these.

    • fasteddiez

      Jerry and Bob, did you ever see Viet peasants with the three prong, bleeding indentation smack dab in the middle of their foreheads, as they were taken captive? I never did that myself, but it seemed quite popular, as a diversion.

      Also, will Colt be featuring the model foisted on the hapless troops in 65, 66, and 68, which its’ main features being failure to feed, failure to eject, and success in killing its’ proprietor by ensuring being shot by a protagonist with a working rifle?

      If so, keep it away from Marines and Soldiers. Other shooters, however, can experience the historic feeling of frustration and rage of the hard chargers’ last living moments. Upon becoming a short timer, I managed to examine, CSI like, the aftermath of a killing zone, both checking the the rifles of the dearly departed … UGH, and trying to piece together what happened.

      The CEO of Colt should have been shot ……. by an AK or a SKS!

      • Gunner4guy

        Transfer your anger to the ‘experts’ at DA/DOD who thought they knew better than the people who designed the rifle in the first place. They messed with the original powder, bullet, twist rate, etc. and didn’t issue cleaning kits cause the rounds were so ‘clean’. Being a hunter I always had a cleaning kit and kept my rifle clean/lubed cause you just never knew. Mine worked when I needed it – all I asked of it.

        • fasteddiez

          No Anger, twas too many years ago. The designer would be Eugene Stoner, right? Are you saying that Stoner’s design, going to Colt was changed, then rejected by the Army/DOD on some unscientific, specious, cavalier grounds, thus forcing Colt to comply with the changes? That’s a real stretch. It’s clear the tests were overlooked.

          Do you think for one minute that a Jarhead, having had a critical malfunction, and lived to tell about it would care about all the history and engineering BS. Colt’s name is on the rifle, that’s all that matters. Were you even there?

          They did issue cleaning kits to us because the POS rifles were new, as we traded in our M-14s (feb. 67). I always cleaned mine, as did others around me. It only failed once, on an occasion that turned out to be non critical.

          Also, what’s with the hunter BS “you never knew.” Unless it was a Cape Buffalo, Hippo, or a Lion, a malfunction wouldn’t matter.

          • Gunner4guy

            I ‘never knew’ when a weapon would get dirty, jam, etc. so I carried a cleaning kit-they don’t weigh all that much, still do when I hunt deer or turkey or even rabbits.. As for the kit itself, I was issued a brand-new rifle w/o a kit and told to ‘borrow one’ if I felt I needed it, “the Army would have given me one if they thought I needed it.”
            Maybe you need to go and read up on what actually happened when the rifle was approved for general issue-DA(actually TACOM) wanted a powder with a different composition, they changed the specs on the projectile and even told the makers to re-do the twist rate for some dumb reason(Armalite used a 1-in-10 twist while TACOM thought a 1-in-14 was better, they ‘compromised’ on a 1-in-12–according to 1 report I read). Maybe if the military had done a better job of educating the troopies instead of just handing them a rifle and bandoleers then telling them to go out and ‘Kill a Commie for Mommy’ some might stil be alive.
            As for my service, I stayed in, active and Guard until just before Desert Shield, getting called up to visit Grenada and Panama along the way.

    • George Peter Anaipakos

      Jerry – I was in the USMC in 1968 and 1969 at the DMZ and I carried the XM16E1 with the three prong flash suppressor – It proved valuable in twisting off the bailing wire they used to keep the cases of C-Rations intact!

  • Bob

    makes no difference to me and I carried that rifle in 1968 in nam.
    wonder if it will have the same crappy 1 in 12 twist barrel which pretty much limits you to 55 grain bullets.

  • l2a3

    I sure hope they use the original chamber of the SP1. That chamber/feed arrangement would eat anything without jamming, it was very forgiving unlike the current rifles.

  • Owen

    Does this mean it will have the original twist rate as well?

  • Jerry Sullivan

    Colt must be really desperate for sales… either get on board, or out of the way! Retro guns are NOT like repro 55 Chevys ..I see no demand for an old-tech ANYTHING.

  • UCSPanther

    I actually like the idea of bringing back classic configurations. I’ve never really liked the “Quad-rail, beta-C drum mag” that so many mall ninjas were going hog-wild for.

    • Anon. E Maus

      Hopefully, quad-rails go the way of the dodo with the inception of MLOK and KeyMod.
      I like the MagPul handguards, they feel good, and I’m not attaching a bunch of stuff on the sides, I don’t need all that weight on the front, nor the snag.

      As for Beta mags, I wouldn’t even mind them if the damn things worked, but they don’t, not well anyway, there are WAY better high capacity magazines for the AR-15 out there, the SureFire 60 & 100, the XS drums, the MagPul 60, the Armatac SAW (150rds and infinitely more reliable and durable than the Beta mag)

  • Not me!

    I just want the fore grips, and butt stocks, of both rifles……maybe available separately?

    • glenn cheney

      A2 Duty stock is close for the M-16….and new…saw some vintage online recently from an armory, they looked 50 years old! But, the point was, if you wanted circa 64′, you had to come to their store. They looked rough, were spray painted with inventory numbers. Nasty they were.

  • glenn cheney

    Well, I started to build a replica some time back, but didn’t. Just committed to several 6.5 grendel builds, so, I’ll take a 20″ bbl., use an A2 front sight, a rifle tube and a steel gas block on 4150cvm molly, finding the grip will be the only challenge, then the rest is easy, tweaked trigger, NiB BCG’s, 9310 bolt, 8620 BCG….6.5, .264 LBC….1200 yard paper puncher if pushed, (24″ the competition length) and I’ll have a Viet Nam Colt looking rifle that pushed a pill that catches the venerable 7.62 NATO at 700 yds. and waves goodbye. At 2,900 ft. per sec. with Lapua brass and 123 gr. Senar bullet, it honks on at .510 BC.
    BTW, A couple weeks back Ordinance handed up their cartridge recommendation, the 6.5.
    Soon as I heard that, I was the proud owner of ten LBC .264’S…6.5. Four heading to WILDMAN GUNS in Mississippi today from Mizzou for Cerekoting…going to go to skeleton stocks….Niche’……

  • DL

    Colt has done this over the years as they find the old parts. I was lucky enough to get several of those percussion revolvers. Man, I would love to take one of these across the rifle qualification courses/combat rifle match. Well, I’d enjoy listening and smelling. You need eyes and mobility for that pleasure. I gave all my parts away over twenty years ago. It is funny, we cursed those damned rifles enough to make them eternal.

    • Kivaari

      Navy Arms supplied Colt with the parts.

  • L. Roger Rich

    CAI made a great M-`16 style rifle a few years back that went for $630 using mostly Colt GI parts kits. Bet this limited Colt version will cost over $2000.

    • Kivaari

      Some of the CAI rifles needed rebuilding after buying. I bought on, and I needed to re-barrel it instantly. Junk. CAI is known for junk.

  • Core

    My only complaint is that every ffl or distributor will be selling these at grossly inflated prices. And who gets exclusive rights to these? Why doesn’t Colt just take direct orders and limit one per customer? Lets be somewhat fair here.. I guess I’ll keep building my own clones out or original parts.

  • Comrade Misfit

    Are the handguards and other bits of stock furniture going to be made available?

  • Mac

    Sigh…

  • Keith B

    411 … I was in Vietnam (flying Helo’s) and trust me, if you had a M-16 then you aren’t interested in having a “re-issue” now. The one’s issued to us to carry on board our UH-1’s were tossed “over-board” and replaced with Ithaca short stock 12ga pumps, M1 Thompson’s or confiscated AK-47s. Thanks, but no thanks Colt, roger that?

    • Kivaari

      Blame the Army not Colt. We had H&Rs and they were fine.

  • Gunner4guy

    Don’t know about the 1903 altho they look neat…I’d take an XM177 again, also an XM21 with all the goodies in the hardcase that I wasn’t allowed to take home when I ETS’d active duty. Something about it still being govt property…???

    • Kivaari

      hey are marketing a way over-priced 1903. IIRC it is $1500, and that’s too much. Colt has lost its way once again. A very poorly run company.

      • Gunner4guy

        Wow! $1500??? Too much. I think I could find an original for less if I looked hard enough. Surprised Colt is still in business.

  • Kivaari

    I hope they do an M16A1 variant. I hope they are not ridiculously priced. I had just told myself I was done buying anymore ARs, having reduced it to just 2 very fine examples. An A1 would let me break that promise to myself.

  • Alex Nicolin

    Bugs included? 🙂

  • Isaac Arnold

    I never saw a 1903. Given that over 100 million firearms have been sold in the U.S. since 2008, 1500 of each type will disappear pretty fast.

  • Bill

    Typical Colt. They are announcing the Holy Grails of AR-15s, and the best they can do to promote their products is put them on a carousel so that the real challenge is to take a clear picture. Anyone ever hear of still photographs or press packages? Reminds me of the early ’80s, when everyone heard rumors of a stainless Python but only one gun magazine was initially privileged to examine it.

    • Kivaari

      Colt has been in and out of bankruptcy more times than I can remember. It has failed to hire good managers.

  • Not me!

    Excellent!! Thank you!

  • BigFED

    I was sent VietNam in Jan 1973 just prior to the peace accords being signed. When I arrived in country, I was issued a CAR-15. Boy, I wished I had been able to keep that weapon!!

    • Anon. E Maus

      They do feel very good in the hand, length and weight wise, kind of a Goldilocks sized carbine. It probably wouldn’t be too hard for you to build a weapon with similar characteristics in weight and length (though of course, this will be an SBR).

  • Scott Wagner

    Good old Colt. Always looking to the past instead of the future. And they wonder why they’re always going bankrupt…

  • RND377th

    The first issue of the Colt M-16 was to the USAF Security Police the Army had already spent money on the M14 and turned the M16 down. We had problems and was later issued rods to take care of jamming I tried to clean my weapon everyday. You could only load 19 rds in a 20rd mag. otherwise it would jam it fed so fast. this was VN 1966

  • Kivaari

    Triple B Guns in Cd’A Idaho has one of those on the rack. It’s nice.

    • nicholsda

      At what price? That would make only the 3rd one that I know of with the collapsible stock and factory Z-kote. We know they only did 150 of the pistols and supposedly a total of 500 rifles but most were fixed stocks. Also as far is known, only 25 sets were sold. The rest were single sales.

      Been close to 20 years since I was out there.

      • Kivaari

        It is not the painted set. It’s just an early AR15 Carbine. Like the SP1 but with the metal butt stock. I didn’t remember the painted set.

  • Johnny Lee Lewis

    Colt is’nt making them… The company that is making the $1,500 M1903 .380 pistols and the Bulldog Gatling gun for Colt is making them for Colt. So its a replica of a replica.

  • Anon. E Maus

    Maybe they’re testing the waters?

    I hope they at least extend to selling retro styled parts, I would love the Cold Moderator (NFA or not) and the GAU5 upper, as well as more easily available triangular handguards (of varying lengths)

  • Kivaari

    Recommended reading. 1 June 1968 Congressional report from the Ichord Commission on the M16 rifle in Vietnam. This lays much of this out, in depth.