Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

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Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby AlanM » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:32 am

I do have a reason for asking this.
I am totally ignorant with respect to the AR platform.
I do not own one and have never shot one although my eldest daughter owns and shoots one.

Once the question is answered I will explain why I'm asking.
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Re: Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby calvin56 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:00 am

Yes
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Re: Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby Berlin Kid » Wed Sep 12, 2018 4:03 pm

No and Yes... civilians cannot purchase an AR-15 that is full auto as they are prohibited because they are of new manufacture. Police and military can get them.
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Re: Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby calvin56 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 4:44 pm

In the 60's when ARs hit the civilian market some of the first were from a contract overrun with the air force. They were an ugly blue green grey and sold for about 75 bucks. Mine was stamped Armalite not Colt. The striking feature was that the charging handle was inside the carrying handle. They were slab sided with no deflector and the duck bill flash hider.

With the exception of the charging handle, selector, and an indentation missing on the bolt carrier they were identical internally to the M16. Same pin diameters, same slot in the bottom of the receiver. The finish on the selector did not match the rest of the rifle. I believe they simply switched selectors to remove the full auto function.

Since it was too easy to convert it back changes were made. They made the civilian trigger group pins larger to prevent you from dropping in surplus M16 parts. They changed the secondary sear, disconnector, bolt carrier, and selector.

After the ban on new full auto civilian rifles in the 80's these early receivers became expensive. Something about them being considered "open" and being eligible for legal conversion. I'm not 100% certain I remember this all correctly but I think this is correct.
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Re: Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby steves 50de » Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:19 pm

calvin56 wrote:In the 60's when ARs hit the civilian market some of the first were from a contract overrun with the air force. They were an ugly blue green grey and sold for about 75 bucks. Mine was stamped Armalite not Colt. The striking feature was that the charging handle was inside the carrying handle. They were slab sided with no deflector and the duck bill flash hider.

With the exception of the charging handle, selector, and an indentation missing on the bolt carrier they were identical internally to the M16. Same pin diameters, same slot in the bottom of the receiver. The finish on the selector did not match the rest of the rifle. I believe they simply switched selectors to remove the full auto function.

Since it was too easy to convert it back changes were made. They made the civilian trigger group pins larger to prevent you from dropping in surplus M16 parts. They changed the secondary sear, disconnector, bolt carrier, and selector.

After the ban on new full auto civilian rifles in the 80's these early receivers became expensive. Something about them being considered "open" and being eligible for legal conversion. I'm not 100% certain I remember this all correctly but I think this is correct.

Did it have the auto sear hole above the selector switch in the lower. If that hole is there Its a machine gun even if sear is not installed.
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Re: Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby calvin56 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 6:49 am

All pins and holes were the same. The disco had the tail, the back of the trigger was open, the hammer had the auto sear bent. The auto sear was removed but the pin installed.
I was offered an obscene amount of money for it with the buyer intending to do a legal conversion. The two pieces required were available from Lone Star Ordinance. Never saw him or the rifle again.
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Re: Was the AR-15 ever select fire or full auto?

Postby willbird » Thu Oct 04, 2018 11:24 am


1959
ArmaLite licenses both the AR-10 and AR 15 designs to Colt Firearms. Robert Fremont, a key player in the design team of the AR-10 and AR 15 Rifle models, leaves ArmaLite for Colt Firearms to help with continued AR rifle development. ArmaLite launches the AR-7 Survival Rifle. The AR-7 was a .22 long rifle caliber rifle targeted at the civilian market, although a number of military organizations around the world bought it.

Colt Firearms sells the first AR 15 rifles to the Federation of Malaya, later to become known as Malaysia.

1961
Eugene Stoner leaves ArmaLite to serve as a consultant to Colt Firearms. At this point, ArmaLite was out of the AR-15 business – for the time being. The United States Air Force tests the AR 15 Rifle and purchases 8,500 rifles.






1963
The Air Force standardizes the AR 15 and designates the rifle M-16. 85,000 rifles are purchased by the Air Force. Also this year, the US Army purchases 85,000 more M-16 rifles.


Sort of precludes an Armalite civvie version. Pre 1968 the exact definition of "Machine Gun" really had not been nailed down tight. It was somewhat accepted that all the parts of a machine gun did not constitute a machine gun unless they were assembled.

Colt sent a pilot model rifle (serial no. GX4968) to the BATF for civilian sale approval on Oct. 23, 1963. It was approved on Dec. 10, 1963, and sales of the "Model R6000 Colt AR-15 SP1 Sporter Rifle" began on Jan 2, 1964. The M16 wasn't issued to infantry units until 1965 (as the XM16E1), wasn't standardized as the M16A1 until 1967, and didn't officially replace the M14 until 1969. Colt had been selling semi-automatic AR-15's to civilians for 5 years by the time the M16A1 replaced the M14. Going off of the serial number records for the SP1, Colt had sold at least 2,501 rifles to the civilian market by 1965, 8,250 rifles by 1967, and 14,653 rifles by 1969.
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