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 Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine

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killermoostache70
pitfighter
jim
Cerwyn
yellow
smootik
2Sharp
8ace
MadMike
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeFri Jul 02, 2010 12:34 pm

Although I am not around here often lately, a few may remember me. I am that guy who is nuts about AR-15 models. I started collecting six years ago and I fell in love with the HF M16 series instantly. Sadly those models are VERY expensive and rare, so it took a long time until I finally could acquire one for my collection.

I heard that HF sold their M16/M4 moulds to ZEKE. This company is making top notch Airsoft custom parts. Anyway I doubt if there will ever be a reissue of the M4A1 and M16A4 from HF.

HF made these models 1999/2000 in limited numbers (aprrox 150 - 200 pieces), long before MGC offered their HW M4A1.

When I finally received my HF M4A1, I didn't have the heart to open the box for weeks. As a side note, this is the only model in my collection that has a name: Rumpelstiltskin (from that Brothers Grimm tale). My Girlfriend gave it to the M4A1, as she thought that would suit her well (compact, handy, useful, but dangerous and lethal).

The model is very realistic. It takes real magazines and accessories. It has a realistic weight and feel compared to my MGC M4A1.

The only drawback is that the finish is not perfect (small scars and burrs on the receiver), something that bothered me at first. But I learnt that the finish on real Colt rifles is not always perfect as well. Of course this model is full metal, so it will get scratches and signs of wear if handled often (something you can see on real rifles as well).

The colour is not black, but dark grey. The MGC model is black, but I think the colour HF chose is accurate.
There is a slight colour difference between lower and upper receiver. You can see it at my avatar pic. Anyway this is something that can appear on the real guns too.
The gun came with 10 inert rounds on a stripper clip, as well as a plastic muzzle cap (CAPLUGS BUFFALO N.Y. RCL-10) and a real Colt instruction booklet.

Sadly this is a dummy only model, so you have to cycle the inert rounds manually, which is still kind of fun. It can not use pfc caps. That does not bother me as I would not fire this treasure anyway.

So now see the photos:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen493

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen461


HF M4A1 (metal) on top, MGC M4A1 (HW plastic) below:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen492

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen490



Magazine (dull black finish) that came with the model:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen463

Grey, US Army issue magazine that I prefer:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen465

Nice bolt:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen480

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen479

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen478



That's all you get with the model (note the plastic muzzle cap for real AR-15s from the USA):

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen467

Markings (of course every HF model has a unique serial number with the realistic W prefix):

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen499

Let the photos speak:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Dsci0010

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Dsci0011Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Pbucket

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen476

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen461

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen488

EDIT: some photos replaced


Last edited by MadMike on Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:47 am; edited 3 times in total (Reason for editing : images converted to servimg)
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8ace
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
8ace


Number of posts : 2554
Location / Country : UK
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeFri Jul 02, 2010 3:28 pm

Congratulations on getting your new toy Very Happy It looks very very nice from the picks.

8ace
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2Sharp
Modelgun Master
Modelgun Master



Number of posts : 229
Location / Country : The Swedish Kingdom
Registration date : 2008-09-10

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeFri Jul 02, 2010 5:56 pm

Simply amazing Smile

Great pics of a great modelgun!

It looks fasntastic, this is definitely one of the modelguns that has grail status for me!!

Can i please ask for more pictures inside the lower receiver? Can the bolt be removed from the bolt carrier? Looks like there is the back portion of a firing pin, but the bolt isn't drilled through for any tip of a firing pin to poke through, no?

Awesome-ness!

Thank for sharing, congrats to your new "toy"!
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smootik
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
smootik


Number of posts : 1823
Location / Country : Poland
Registration date : 2009-03-03

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeFri Jul 02, 2010 7:03 pm

Great review! I really liked watching the pictures and reading about differences from MGC model.

I had no idea that HobbyFix produced M-series rifles, thought they only did pistols. Also dates are interesting fact, I was under impression that MGC made these M16 much earlier, not in 2000s.

ZEKE is well-known in airsoft for making high quality metal conversion kits (frames/receivers) for ABS airsoft pistols. They were usually expensive and recently other companies took over in popularity (Guarder, Shooters Design). I did not know that they had connections to HobbyFix. Fascinating how all these things come together, isn't it?

Good that after you decided to finally open box you found model satisfying :-)
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeSun Jul 04, 2010 10:31 am

I will try to take more of the requested pics, but it may need a little time. Meanwhile the rest of the pics I hve already taken.

Logo on the box:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen475

Yes, there is the back of a firing pin, but there is no hole at the bolt end, see the picture:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen481

Internals, hammer cocked:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen485

Internlas, sadly blurred:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen477

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen486

As far as I know, Hf made a M16A1 and XM177E2 in the 90s, and the newer M16A4 (with 3 round burst mechanism!) and M4A1 in 1999/2000.

A quick word about the MGC M4A1: do not get me wrong, it is a great model. The look and the feel of the HW plastic is good, despite the fact that it is still plastic. It looks and feels still quite realistic. It is as heavy as a real one. And it is so much cheaper than the Hf model, and it can "fire" using caps. You can easily improve it by spraypainting the shiny stock flat black and adding real, oversize hand guards (I did a short review about that years ago here on the forum).





Last edited by MadMike on Sun Jul 04, 2010 1:02 pm; edited 1 time in total
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yellow
Modelgun Enthusiast
Modelgun Enthusiast
yellow


Number of posts : 208
Age : 41
Location / Country : Belgium
Registration date : 2009-07-02

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeSun Jul 04, 2010 11:12 am

If I may ask, what's the price of such a HF model? And are all of these models non-firing?
Anyway, it looks great!!!
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smootik
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
smootik


Number of posts : 1823
Location / Country : Poland
Registration date : 2009-03-03

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeSun Jul 04, 2010 12:19 pm

As far as I know all HF models are dummy, at most with "Tanio Action".

Yahoo Auctions list Colt 1911 for 50-100 thousand yen (550$), Browning 1910 for 100 thousand, I suspect that automatic rifle would be in 200..300 thousand range (2000..3500$).

Currently there is an auction for HF M16A1 (slightly damaged), it should close in about 2 hours giving us some price estimate.

Auction closed, end price just 37000 yen (~430$), strange.


Last edited by smootik on Sun Jul 04, 2010 7:44 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : price updated)
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeSun Jul 04, 2010 12:50 pm

The original retail price of the Hf M4A1 was around 2500 USD. (For that price you can get a really nice real AR-15 if allowed.) As these models are very rare and seldom sold by their owners, their price normally went up over the last years ...

Yes, their rifles are all dummy only models. I think this is due to the high realism. They copy the real gun as close as allowed by Japanese laws. So the mechanism may be too complicated and the metal parts too heavy to operate them with the very limited charge of PFC caps.

Here are a few pics of the bolt assembly (note the cut down firing pin):

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bolt1

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bolt2

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bolt3

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bolt4

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bolt5
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yellow
Modelgun Enthusiast
Modelgun Enthusiast
yellow


Number of posts : 208
Age : 41
Location / Country : Belgium
Registration date : 2009-07-02

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeSun Jul 04, 2010 6:24 pm

Shocked WOW Shocked Think I will stay happy with my Marushin M16A1 Very Happy
A HF is a great modelgun as far as I can see on the pictures, but for that money I can buy a real beretta 92 and a sig P226 Xfive as soon as I get my license Very Happy
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Cerwyn
Cerwyn (Site Admin)
Cerwyn (Site Admin)
Cerwyn


Number of posts : 11065
Age : 65
Location / Country : North Wales
Registration date : 2008-07-20

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeSun Jul 04, 2010 7:03 pm

Having been lucky enough to have seen and handled a HF M4A1, I must say I've never ever seen anything like it. Quality and sheer realism is stunning. MadMike's photos, as superb as they are, don't let you feel the quality of this model.
Even though I have Marushin M16 and XM177, plus an early MGC M16 in my collection, this set of photos has me itching for an MGC M4A1 now.

I'll never afford a HF model, that's for sure. For the serious collector, there probably isn't anything that comes close and so exclusive.

It is crazy that real versions of AR-15 based rifles can be aquired for less money, but these days how many of us could actually obtain a licence Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_question

_________________
Cerwyn

Hobby collector of Replica model guns and Militaria.
also member of Living History Reenactment Groups.
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https://mp40modelguns.forumotion.net
jim
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
jim


Number of posts : 988
Location / Country : Hong Kong / Sydney, Australia
Registration date : 2008-09-07

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeMon Jul 05, 2010 9:06 am

I think it's relatively easy for Cerwyn (as well as guys from the UK) can get the real straight-pull ones...looks good and less lethal (according to the anti-gun body: anything auto = lethal)...
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2Sharp
Modelgun Master
Modelgun Master



Number of posts : 229
Location / Country : The Swedish Kingdom
Registration date : 2008-09-10

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeTue Jul 06, 2010 7:34 pm

jim wrote:
I think it's relatively easy for Cerwyn (as well as guys from the UK) can get the real straight-pull ones...looks good and less lethal (according to the anti-gun body: anything auto = lethal)...

Here's a nice one:
http://www.rusmilitary.com/html/firearms_m4.htm

Awesome detail on the bolt, thanks for sharing those photos Smile

Congrats on of the wonderful "grails" of our hobby!
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smootik
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
smootik


Number of posts : 1823
Location / Country : Poland
Registration date : 2009-03-03

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeTue Jul 06, 2010 8:04 pm

jim wrote:
... can get the real straight-pull ones...
What's a "straight-pull"?
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jim
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
jim


Number of posts : 988
Location / Country : Hong Kong / Sydney, Australia
Registration date : 2008-09-07

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Jul 07, 2010 7:33 am

"Straight-pull" rifles/longarms (almost dedicated to the UK market only): military-styled selective-fire/semi-auto rifles made as manual-loading rifles straight from the factory (function as bolt-action rifles) because of UK's strange gun law...actually this is the most ideal type of rifles for me: having the good looks while I can even cycle real/dummy rounds at home (and of course fire it at the range) without having to grant those heavily-restricted Class 3/Section 5 licences...

No such luck for me in both Australia/Hong Kong because the looks (of the guns) also counts - it looks "too military" so therefore too invasive for civilian to own (mag capacity as well - only 10 rds allowed as the maximum in "Down-Under")...

One more criticism for Aussie gun law: this is the only Western developed country that classed conventional pump action/semi-auto hunting shotguns as "prohibited weapons" (even UK/Japan allow these...) - what made me more angry is that when the law came into effect I'd just reached the legal age to get these guns therefore I missed out Evil or Very Mad ...
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smootik
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
smootik


Number of posts : 1823
Location / Country : Poland
Registration date : 2009-03-03

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Jul 07, 2010 10:15 am

Got it now :-)

I think "straight-pull" would not be allowed to be bought here. The reason is that original firearm was designed as automatic. While nothing in law prevents it, Police have prepared themselves (unlawfully) an additional list of prohibited firearms that they don't allow for sale (or confiscate when you import it) even though they are technically legal when you have firearms license. These include BRS-99 (factory made semi version of PM-98 SMG), Skorpion vz.91 (semi version of vz.61), Radom Hunter (semi version of AKM) or Works 11 (semi .22 LR version of AKM).
Based on that it's clear that our beloved Police would consider straight-pulls to be in the same group :-(

Airsoft or modelgun M-series is still the way to go here for civilians :-)
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Jul 14, 2010 1:35 pm

Some more detail pics (note the slight faults with the finish):

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen459

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen453

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen456

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen455

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen451

Double heat shield, oversize handguards:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Handguards-1

Barrel assembly (Note the shiny part. I first thought it would be plastic, propably due to legal restrictions, but it is aluminum. No idea why it has a different shape and colour. The design is odd though. Real carbines have the thinner or the thicker barrel profile under the handguards, but not a mixed design. Also note the sharp end and slightly bent roll-pins on the front sling swivel mount (no big issue, but bad quality control im my eyes)):

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Barrel2-1

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Barrel1-1

M4A1 with two real mil spec 30 rd magazines, two 5.56 dummy carts and an additional, real, current issue front sling swifel (this swifel does no longer fit the thinner A1 barrel profile):

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen498

For reference see these pics, showing real parts (courtesy of Ekie at AR15.com):

Early M4/M4A1 barrel and later HBAR "Heavy Barrel":

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Barrel921HB

Early sling swifel. It was a pinned on type developed for use with the M16 series and the M203. It was reversible so it could be used on both .625" (A1) and .750" (A2) barrels:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Swivel203early

Late sling swivel, same as before but now .750" only, used in 2000 and on production:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Swivel203late


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smootik
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
smootik


Number of posts : 1823
Location / Country : Poland
Registration date : 2009-03-03

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Jul 14, 2010 3:22 pm

Interesting details - I had no idea that handguards can have such heat shields, only seen plastic airsoft ones ;-)

Do you maybe know why barrel thickness was changed from A1 to A2? Strength issues?
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Jul 14, 2010 3:26 pm

As far as I know the thinner barrel tended to overheat with excessive full automatic fire. Even worse most M4A1 carbines are used with a lot of extra equipment fitted on the R.I.S. rail system, adding a lot of weight to the barrel so the barrel had to be reinforced.
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeMon Aug 09, 2010 4:55 pm

Here is an article scan from Japanese COMBAT (Issue Dez 2000/Feb. 2001) magazine that promoted the then new HF M4A1. Sadly I do not understand what it says, but I like the pictures:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine 20090922090022248_0006

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine 20090922090022248_0001

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine 20090922090022248_0002

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine 20090922090022248_0003
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MadMike
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeFri Oct 29, 2010 7:29 am

I found a nice forum entry while browsing the net. It shows the pictures of my HF M4A1. I knew that
detailed pics and information about the HF M4A1 were very rare so I did the review.

Would love to know what they write about it there though!

http://www.arms-cool.net/forum/thread-71072-1-7.html
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jim
Modelgun Perfectionist
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jim


Number of posts : 988
Location / Country : Hong Kong / Sydney, Australia
Registration date : 2008-09-07

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeMon Nov 01, 2010 3:31 am

Ha Very Happy ! This is one of the Taiwanese airsoft forums that I occasionally browsed (more often now because I've to keep up to date with makers like WE who keeps bringing out new GBBs just like the red hot G36C-styled "G39C").

This post is from the perspective of an airsofter who had never encountered modelgun before so he began by asking people have they ever seen a M4 so realistic before (making fun that the holes on the bolt will cause gas leaks for GBB before revealing to readers this is a dummy modelgun)...also of course how he wish to get one of this...

Then the replies - some asks the legality of this gun in Taiwan...I reckon this shall be legal since this is a dummy only (although some suspects this can be easily converted - but then who really wants to fire such expensive gun without any spares available whatsoever).
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MadMike
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MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Nov 03, 2010 8:53 am

Thank you! I was so curious what they were saying about it.
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MadMike
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MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeWed Aug 15, 2012 1:10 pm

Sadly I am not here often as I can hardly find the time to enjoy my collection or make posts. Anyway I just realised that it is more than two years now I psoted this review.

The HF M4A1 is (still) my favourite modelgun. It is as close to the real one as possible regarding Japanese laws. This one has a story to tell. It was very hard to obtain one in Japan as it was made in limited numbers around 2001, and it was very expensive.

When moving house with me its finish got damaged and I tried to repair it, making it worse and even breaking a lug of the trigger guard on the lower receiver. There was no way in hell to get a spare one, so I was in despair. Luckily a very skilled forum member was able and willing to help. He did magical things and saved my model. We decided to do some modifications to make it even more realistic as I had nothing to loose then.

I will review these modifications step by step. The model is not yet finished and still undergoing some work.

Let me start with some things I have learnt over the years regarding the real M4A1.

1.) Colour of the finish

The real M16s/M4s are made from anodized aluminium, and the finish varies from grey to flat black. Most current Govt issue Colt M4/M4A1 carbines are flat black, so some collectors said HF was wrong choosing a dark grey colour.
Anyway I learnt that early M4s came in a dark grey colour, so HF was most likely right back in 2001 when they made their modelgun.

When repairing and reworking is complete, the gun will get a flat black coating as I think it is not possible to match the proper Colt grey.

2.) no “T-markings” on flat top upper

The rail on the flat top upper of current M4s has T-markings so it is easier to remember the correct spot to put the accessories on. Collectors blamed HF had forgotten this important detail.
Anyway I learnt early Colt uppers did not have those markings. HF copied a “C AF” marked (and thus early) upper which did not have those marks. HF was right again back in 2001.

Real uppers. Note the different colours and the markings on the rail:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Colt_upper_3

3. “COLT’S MFG. CO. INC.” markings instead of “Colt Defense”

The markings HF chose are right for a 2001 Carbine. For the six years between the date when Colt emerged from bankruptcy in 1996 with a new name (Colt's Manufacturing) and 2002, when Colt Defense split off into a separate company for military/law enforcement guns, they did indeed rollmark them as "Colt's Mfg.".


Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen442

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rumpelstilzchen439

Real one. Note the markings and colour:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Colt_M16A4_2220_small

Another real one. Also note that the markings are rolled, not engraved like they are on the model:
Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine DSCN0112


Repair:T

hat is the most important modification my friend did. He welded the broken lug, but was not satisfied. He then machined a complete new part for the grip area from an aluminium block, thus saving my model! He did magic! I don’t know how much time and effort he had to spend, but I will never forget what he has done.

See the disaster:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Lug1

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rep3

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rep1

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Rep2


Modifications:

1. Missing drain hole

There is a small drain hole where the spring and detent for the receiver pivot pin is located. Very early M16s, as well as some civilian semi auto AR-15s do not have this hole, but current ones do. An Army armourer’s manual explains how and where to drill it. My friend reworked the lower receiver and drilled the proper hole (By the wy, HF later noticed that mistake and their M16A4 models had the hole).

Note the missing drain hole:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Lower2

Advice how to drill it:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine AR15holefence

Later HF M16A4, now with the drain hole:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine M16-7



2. Barrel profile


As already written HF used a strange barrel profile, not an early standard (thin) barrel, not a later heavy barrel. My friend made a new barrel part, adding to the realism.

The original barrel assembly:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bar1

Reworked barrel assembly:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bar2

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Bar3


3. Lip surrounding the magazine well


HF made the front lip too big (something Jim has already mentioned in another thread), so we decided to make it smaller, thus looking more realistic. Getting exact measurements was very critical as these are not specified and seem to vary from different models (the M16A2 has a slightly different lip than the M4A1). I got some pictures from real guns so my friend could obtain a great and realistic result:

Lip is too big/sharp:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Hobbyfixmr0147-5-1

Much better now:

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine HFnewlip1

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine HFnewlip2

Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine HFnewtparea1


We did some more modification and I will continue this review as soon as I can find the time. The M4A1 is not yet completed though.
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jim
Modelgun Perfectionist
Modelgun Perfectionist
jim


Number of posts : 988
Location / Country : Hong Kong / Sydney, Australia
Registration date : 2008-09-07

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PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeFri Aug 17, 2012 10:14 am

Can't wait to see the progress...and I'll try to post some of my new Colt rifles (both dummy & GBB) to see what shall be rectified for mine...
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MadMike
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Modelgun Perfectionist
MadMike


Number of posts : 646
Location / Country : Germany (Stuttgart)
Registration date : 2008-08-06

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PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitimeTue Aug 21, 2012 10:25 am

I can proudly announce that the man who made all this possible is 8ace. Thank you very much for your help and understanding. Some more modifications we have done:

Replacing the front sling swivel by a real Colt swivel.

Replacing the grip screw by a real AR-15/M16 grip screw. 8ace had to recut the threads in the lower receiver tough ... ( I know I am a nitpicker, but I liked that crazy modification, and 8ace did it without complaining)

Replacing the receiver extension (Buffer/stock tube) by a real Colt mil spec one. HF used a commercial tube and stock that comes with 1.17 inches diameter. I found a Colt tube with the proper 1.14 inches, as well as a real Colt stock. Despite the different diameter and a small raised "N" on the plastic stock, there is no big difference at all.

Replacing the selector lever by a real one. The selector HF made sadly does not really click into the middle (SEMI) position as it should. That was something that bothered me from the start. I do not understand why HF did not work out that fault. Anyway that was tricky and needed a lot of twinkering as the real selector made of steel has to be modified. This modification is not yet completed though.

I will continue this review and add some pics, but maybe we should move it to the "Modifications" section ...
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PostSubject: Re: Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine   Photo review of the HobbyFix Colt M4A1 Carbine Icon_minitime

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