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Appearance and Build

When I removed the SR16s box top, I was treated to an awesome sight. The SR16’s receiver, stock, and grips are all the same shade of black, which makes the gun look very real. The receiver is high quality plastic, which looks much like metal from all but the closest of distances. The receiver bears a golden Knights Armament logo, as well as ‘SR16 M4’, ‘STONER RIFLE CAL. 5.56MM’, and on the other side of the receiver, ‘KNIGHT’S MFG. CO. VERO BEACH, FL. U.S.A’.

In addition to different trademarks, there are many things that differentiate between the SR16 and the other M4/M16s. Perhaps the most noticeable is the SR16 Rail Interface System (RIS for short), which allows for easy attachment of many different accessories. The classic Armalite carry handle is replaced by a much smaller flip up sight, which makes the SR16 (in my opinion) less cumbersome.

When I took the SR16 out of its box, I was surprised at just how heavy it was. The SR16 weighs about 7 pounds, and even more when loaded with bb’s and battery. With no battery in the stock, the SR16 is a bit front heavy, due to its mostly metal RIS. It was nice of Tokyo Marui to include a vertical fore grip, which helps you control all the extra weight in the front of the gun.

Some of the features I noticed right off the bat, and some details about each:

The RIS:
The SR16’s integrated RIS is one of its greatest assets. Four 20mm rails make up the system, and each rail comes with a nice rail cover to protect it when not in use. The bottom rail is independent from the rest of the system, and can easily be removed. This bottom rail also comes with a vertical fore grip attached. The RIS allows you to add a plethora of accessories, including: lasers, flashlights, bipods, battery packs, and anything else your heart could possibly desire.

Fore Grip:
The SR16 comes with a vertical fore grip that easily attaches to the SR16’s RIS. The grip is pretty light weight, and made entirely of plastic, but it seems solid enough that it wont break any time soon. The grip can be easily adjusted to whatever position on the rail suits you. I prefer to keep the grip close to the magazine well, but that is just me.

Flip Up Sight:
This is one of the features that made me pick the SR16. The flip up sight uses the same sight aperture as a carry handle, but without the extra bulk or weight, making for a more streamlined appearance. As a bonus, when you add any kind of optics to the upper receiver, the iron sight can be simply put down and out of the way.

Aiming
I made sure the sight was aligned properly, loaded an empty magazine (but without battery), and brought the SR16 to eye level. The sight gives you a big picture, and you can easily see your surroundings when you don’t have the confines of the carry handle. This is really where you notice the weight of the SR16. I find that the vertical angle of the fore grip (or holding the SR by the magazine well) really helps keep the strain off your wrist, which will allow you to keep steady aim longer. I also noticed that I really dig the stock of the SR into my shoulder, to help balance out its weight and help me keep it steady. When in this position, I noticed something: the rifle was not designed with south-paws (left handed people) in mind. When I hold the SR16 in my right hand, I can easily use my thumb on the fire selector, and my index finger on the magazine release. Well, with my left hand, its much more difficult. So, all you south-paws will have to use two hands just to remove your magazine, and take your finger off the trigger to change mode of fire.The fire selector has three modes: safe, semi, and auto, which are nicely drawn in the same golden hue as the rest of the SR16’s trademarks. The switch gives a satisfying ‘click’ whenever you move to a new mode of fire, but only time will tell if that will hold up. So, lets load this puppy up and take her for a whirl!

Loading
Along with my SR16, I ordered two bags of Marui .2g bb’s, which I decided to use right off the mark. I used the standard ‘musket loader’ to load my magazine with 52 rounds (although the M16 magazines used by the SR16 are designed to hold 68 rounds), and pulled my battery off the charger. The SR16 stores large type batteries in its stock, which will allow for a full day of shooting. The other nice thing about having a large battery is that its substantial weight helps offset the heavy RIS, giving the rifle a much more balanced and realistic feel. It will probably take you a few tries to get the battery in to the relatively tight confines of the stock, especially with the fuser (a small, tube shape on the power cord in the gun). Getting all the cords, as well as the battery and fuser into the stock, takes a bit of practice. But, when you do, the tight space keeps the battery from rattling around too much, helping to make you forget that the SR16 is ‘just’ an airsoft gun. I proceeded to load the magazine, and pulled back the cocking bolt. The dust cover popped open, accompanied by a satisfying ‘click’. This rather fun loading process also exposes the Hop Up adjustment, which is under a plastic slide under the dust cover.

Now that the SR16 is locked and loaded, its time to test her accuracy! Testing In order to test the accuracy of the SR16, I set up a cardboard box, and stapled three TM targets to it. I put the box on a folding chair, and set myself up about 50 feet from the targets. There was a fairly stiff breeze, but being in my back yard, I was hoping my fence would help eliminate this natural factor. These TM targets are about half the size of sheet of printer paper, making them fairly small targets. Note: I have not touched the Hop Up. This is just an accuracy test based on stock settings!

On all targets, my shots were a bit low and to the left. The shots are off center due to the wind, and I believe I just need to fiddle with the Hop Up in order to get a higher shot. On the first two targets, I was taking my time, trying for as accurate shots as I could get. The third target I just unloaded on, just for fun. I like to think myself a good shot, and I think the groupings on these targets show it. For the first target, I fired from a supported position: sitting, with my arm on my left knee, and the barrel resting on my supported arm. 80% of my shots were in a two square inch area, showing just how accurate a stock SR16 can be in the right hands. I fired at the target from a standing position, again, from 50 feet. I did not have the tight grouping of my first target, but the SR16 one again shows some great accuracy. With 35 rounds left in my magazine, I decided to really unload on target number three. As you can see, the lower left quarter of the target is in tatters; about three quarters of my fire was concentrated there. The SR16’s grouping impressed me, considering I was standing and firing in automatic bursts. I was also delighted with the SR16s power. My shots easily punched through the cardboard box, and many of my bb’s were wedged into the back side of the box.

Infinite Potential
Since the Armalite series guns tend to be the most popular among airsofters, its no wonder that these guns have the most after market accessories of any series. Metal bodies, stocks, and outer barrels, conversion kits… the list goes on and on. In addition to the impressive line of Armalite accessories, the SR16 RIS provides a plethora of grips, lasers, flashlights, and anything else you could possibly desire. With all these products, it becomes fairly obvious that the SR16 can be made into any kind of weapon you need it to be. Does your team need heavy support? Put an electric drum magazine and a bipod onto your SR16. In the next scenario, you might be in the close confines of CQB (Close Quarters Battle), where you might keep your large magazine, but opt for a flashlight, laser, and fore grip. Long-range engagements you say? Reattach your bipod, and attach your scope of choice. Both the RIS and the included fore grip are quite easy to use. In order to access the RIS’s rails, you must remove the plastic rail covers, which act as grips when the rail it is covering is not in use. The covers easily slide off when you push down on a plastic tab and push the cover off the rail. The rails on the sides and top of the barrel are all one unit, but the bottom rail can be removed by simply pushing back the collar towards the receiver. Removing the lower rail allows you to access the outer barrel, and more easily attach or remove accessories. The fore grip has a small dial at its base, which when loosened, allows the grip to slide back and forth on the rail, or off completely. There is a slot in the bottom of the grip that is perfect size for a quarter, allowing you to really secure the grip without the use of any hard to carry tools. With all this available gear, the SR16 is an extremely capable platform, with the ability to quickly transform to the weapon you need… provided you can afford all the accessories.

Conclusion
The SR16 is, as far as I am concerned, the ultimate woodland weapon. Stock, it has excellent performance, and by its very design, it can be adapted to fit a number of battlefield roles. In addition to its outstanding performance, the SR16 is quite possibly the most realistic AEG I have ever used. It has lots of metal, and its trademarks look incredibly real. I would recommend the SR16 to veterans and newbies alike. I would suggest it for ground-pounders; for snipers; and for support troops. I would also suggest the SR16 to anyone who wants an attractive showpiece. I would also suggest the SR16 to anyone as a base for a custom gun, due to the sheer number of aftermarket accessories available for this series gun and its RIS.



Pros and Cons

Pros:
-Great look and feel
-Plenty of metal parts
-Excellent accuracy and power
-Easy to upgrade and add accessories
-Plenty of things to add

Cons:
-Armalites are rather common
-The RIS makes the gun rather heavy
-All the aftermarket accessories can be quite expensive
-The front sling ring can be quite annoying when running, if you don’t have a sling attached to the gun

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Widow Makers Airsoft News and Reviews