Well, I'd at least take it with a grain of salt since Armalite
is trying to get back into some .gov contracts and is
selling FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) as their main
selling point against the competition.
Or, as we in the tech industry call it the "we suck less" sales
August 21, 2005, 06:14 PM
Yeah, the first sentence is clearly perjorative and presented without any supporting data. The rest of the article, while interesting, tries to supply physics to explain how the premise COULD be true rather than provide real-world examples of the purported failures. Junk science...
I imagine that the M4 has seen a wee bit of 'real world' usage in the last three/four years and I've not heard or seen anything that would indicate the the M4 has any systemic problems. Don't treat a select-fire carbine as a LMG, and you'll probably get along just fine....
August 21, 2005, 10:22 PM
Owned and shot a CAR-15 fairly heavily until selling it about fifteen years ago. Granted, it was just an early version, but I have to admit it was one of the most reliable rifles I ever owned--and I am not exactly an AR fan.
Don't know why an M4 would be any less so.
August 21, 2005, 11:15 PM
Local guy had a problem with his tearing the rim off the case and breaking the extractor. Don't know if he ever solved it. I talked to him in the gun store when he was shopping. This was a few years ago. He liked the gun very much aside from the problem with the extractor/torn rims. Might have just been an ammo issue/hot loads, I don't know.
Tse Gee La
August 21, 2005, 11:50 PM
My police department has three Bushmaster 3rnd burst M-4's with 11.5" barrels. Two of them run wonderfully, the third is a piece of crap. I say that because it will work for about the first 30 rounds then it stops ejecting correctly. No matter what I tell them at work they won't send it back to BM to get it fixed.
Instead our pathological liar of a Sgt. keeps saying, "It needs a new firing pin. This one is too long."
We replaced the F/P and it still has problems.
August 22, 2005, 02:20 AM
Check to see if the carrier key on the Bushmaster you have that doesn't run is staked down. Bushmaster has been known to let weapons out of the factory without staking the carrier key screws. The firing pin has nothing to do with the malfunctions you're having.
August 22, 2005, 11:36 PM
This is pretty much old news, but shows the M4's durability to be pretty decent as compared with the M16.
August 23, 2005, 12:39 AM
The technical points Armalite makes are correct. You can't increase gas pressure by 8,000psi or more and shorten the time it takes the gas to cycle the action and not expect a little more wear and tear.
The key word there is a "little" though. Since that time, the military has addressed these problems by designing improved bolts, strengthening the extractor and using a heavier buffer to slow the cycle time.
To my knowledge there has never been problems with "excessive" breakage or overheating. The few incidents I've seen of M4s breaking or overheating generally involve the weapon being pushed well past the limits of the design. If you increase gas pressure by adding a suppressor and then fire a carbine like its a squad automatic weapon, you'll see some heat and breakage.
August 23, 2005, 04:50 AM
I would like to add to Bartholomew's comment, that the failures that did happen were on carbines fired on full auto.
August 24, 2005, 03:50 AM
Teething problems, is all it ever amounted to.
All rifles have them, the M4 has been worked out, and it's moot for us civys with semis anyway.
The M4 is a fine carbine, and very reliable. Mine is still running hiccup free after 3,000 rounds of Wolf through $5 Orlite mags, which if internet myth is true, should have resulted in the gun blowing up 12 times.
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