by NRABlog Staff - Wednesday, January 20, 2016
There are many misconceptions to the AR-15. Two of the most notable are: AR stands for “Assault-Rifle” and they are the same as fully-automatic military firearms. We’re going to debunk these misconceptions, and we’re going to show you why AR-15s are America’s Most Popular Rifles.
A brief history…
The AR in AR-15 actually stands for ArmaLite Rifle, the company which designed and developed the first AR. In 1959, ArmaLite sold the rights to Colt, which continued to carry on the “AR” name. Colt modified the rifle, most notably by relocating the charging handle from under the carrying handle to the rear of the receiver. This redesigned rifle was marketed and adopted by the United States military as the fully automatic M16 rifle. Finding success in all of the ways the platform could be used, Colt developed a semi-automatic civilian version, better known as the AR-15. While the AR-15 and M16 are nearly identical in external appearance, they are internally different. The hammer and trigger mechanisms are designed differently, and the bolt carrier and internal lower receiver of the semi-automatic versions are milled differently, so that the firing mechanisms are not interchangeable. The AR-15 can only switch between safe and fire functions.
There is a vast difference between fully automatic and semi-automatic firearms. In order to fire a semi-automatic firearm, you must pull and release the trigger after each shot. You cannot hold the trigger for rapid fire. Semi-automatic firearms are functionally no different on any platform, whether it be a pistol, rifle or shotgun. Manufacturing of automatic firearms for the general public has been tightly regulated for 80 years and fully-automatic firearms have not been manufactured for the general public at all since the Hughes Amendment to the Firearms Owners Protection Act became law in 1986.
Today, the AR-15 has soared in popularity amongst gun owners, due to a wide-range of factors. It is customizable, adaptable, reliable and accurate that can be used in sport shooting, hunting and self-defense situations. Civilians can also modify and personalize their AR-15 from carbine-length, stocks, optics, barrels, etc. The AR-15s ability to be modified to your own personal taste is one of the things that makes it so unique.
Check out the AR-15s below, and spread the word on what AR really stands for, America’s Rifle