The Armalite SPR Mod 1 LE, featuring a proprietary modular…

The Armalite SPR Mod 1 LE, featuring a proprietary modular rail system, comes from the storied company that initially launched the AR platform.

ARMALITE is where it all started. While Colt is certainly the company that popularized the weapon platform we now know as the AR-15, ArmaLite, is where it began. In 1954, Eugene Stoner, chief engineer for ArmaLite, a division of Fairchild Engine & Airplane Corporation, designed a series of prototype small arms, including the AR-3, AR-9, AR-11, AR-12, none of which saw significant production. However, these design projects did help him towards the one real success that he had up to that point, the AR-7 survival rifle (a component .22 LR rifle that could fit into its stock and float), which was adopted by the United States Air Force.

In 1955, Stoner completed initial design work on the revolutionary AR-10, a lightweight, select-fire infantry rifle in 7.62x51mm NATO (.308) caliber. The AR-10 was submitted for rifle evaluation trials to the US Army’s Springfield Armory late in 1956. When
compared with competing rifle designs previously submitted for evaluation, the AR-10 was smaller, easier to fire in automatic, and much lighter. However, it arrived late in the testing cycle and the Army rejected the AR-10 in favor of the more conventional T44, which would become the M14.

armalite-spr-mod-1-le-556mm1The SPR’s Continuous Optics Platform employs a one-piece upper receiver/forend system for stability.

At the request of the U.S. Military, Stoner and his staff designed the AR-15 from the basic AR-10 design, scaling it down to fire the smaller .223 cartridge. The rest is history as they say, as the AR-15 was later adopted by the U.S. Military as the M16 rifle. After ArmaLite sold the rights to the AR-15 to Colt, Stoner turned his attention to the AR-16 design, another advanced 7.62mm rifle but one that used a more conventional piston and a number of stamped parts to reduce cost. This weapon saw only prototype development but adaptation to .223 resulted in the somewhat successful and often imitated ArmaLite AR-18.

During the Vietnam Conflict, Colt developed a shorter version of the M16, what many called the “Colt Commando,” which led to the development of today’s M4. A semi-automatic 16-inch version of the M4 is very popular with police and legally armed citizens alike, and many manufacturers have developed guns to meet this demand. ArmaLite is no exception, and their new variation is certainly directed at the law enforcement community.

armalite-spr-mod-1-leThe Mako Group’s 3X Magnifier is a cost effective and worthwhile accessory on a law enforcement carbine, easily mounted and used in conjunction with this EOTech XPS sight.

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