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...yet that didn't happen (aside from Navy SEAL adoption). Thanks for that analysis. Interesting history.
The recommendation was not approved by the CMC, so the project ended there. Why the Commandant did not approve the recommendation is known only to him.

It is one of the big "What might have been . . . " questions in history.
 

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Source: The World's Assault Rifles (2010), by Johnson and Nelson
Random pics for anyone interested:
Hat Military person Military uniform Shotgun Air gun


Newspaper Font Adaptation News Photo caption


Photograph Book Military person Military uniform Soldier


It’s an amazing history and I would love to see a company pick up the ball and make a reasonably accurate clone. So many possibilities. A company like PTR who stamps out G3…
There was a commercial version produced for a while as the Robinson M96 in the late 1990s, but I think they went defunct in the 200Xs. Note the last sentence of this picture:
Font Gun accessory Machine

 

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Interesting. The Stoners obviously had 30 rd mags as is evidenced by the Stoner mag pouches in the last photo. I wonder how an effective 30 rd mag could have been developed for the Stoner in 1966 but it took until about three years later for Colt to develop a reliably functioning 30 rd mag for the AR?

I have two of the Stoner mag pouches available if anyone is looking for them.
 

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When I was a Swift Boat advisor in Viet Nam in 1970/1971, we operated a couple of days with an American SEAL advisor and some Vietnamese special forces. The American SEAL carried what looked like a large M-16 with a 40mm grenade launcher mounted underneath. It was in 7.62X51mm with 20 round magazines. I asked him what it was. He said it was a Stoner. I always wanted one just like his.
 

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The recommendation was not approved by the CMC, so the project ended there. Why the Commandant did not approve the recommendation is known only to him.

It is one of the big "What might have been . . . " questions in history.
Here's what one of my reference book's states about that historical question (Source: The World's Assault Rifles (2010), page 1129). I have no idea about the veracity of this passage, but it sounds like SecDec Robert McNamara might not have been in favor of the Stoner 63 platform, esp given that the M16 had already/recently been pushed into military service:
Font Publication Book Paper Paper product

...just a random post from an excellent book on these subjects.
 

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Figures it would be McNamara. The biggest bean counter of them all. -Lloyd 🍻
 

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Interesting. The Stoners obviously had 30 rd mags as is evidenced by the Stoner mag pouches in the last photo. I wonder how an effective 30 rd mag could have been developed for the Stoner in 1966 but it took until about three years later for Colt to develop a reliably functioning 30 rd mag for the AR?

I have two of the Stoner mag pouches available if anyone is looking for them.
The Stoner 63 started life in 1963 with a 30 round magazine. In fact, they never had anything but 30 round magazines.

The AR-15 was a 1957 design, when everybody figured 20 rounds were plenty. (Hey, it's 2-1/2 times more than an M1!).

In 1964-ish, Colt developed the CAR Automatic Rifle for the SAWS program, a BAR or M15 type version of the AR-15, these had the early full curve 30 round magazine, which performed very well during the SAWS testing. Unfortunately, the M16 had sloppy tolerancing on the length of the magazine well, and the simple, reliable, full curve magazine would not fit all M16s, so they had to go back and design the compound straight-curve magazine we have today. Then they had to run it through exhaustive tests, and then manufacture them in quantity for fielding. Testing wasn't complete until autumn 1967, so production probably only started going in earnest in early 1968.
 

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A transferable Stoner is on my Holy Grail list. I doubt it will ever materialize.
 

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My dad was in the Air Force. He was in Vietnam twice. Once in 67, then again in 70/71.

He told me that the second time, at Cam Ranh Bay he told me he was issued an M16. He told me he used to fold the stock sideways under it every night and stick it under his pillow on the bunk he slept on.

I know the butt stock on an M16 doesn't fold sideways. I tried to tell him they didn't. He swore it was an M16. What full auto rifle/carbine that fires 5.56X45 has a butt stock that folds sideways? We "argued" about it a couple times over the years. When I finally got an AR15 and took it home he told me that wasn't what he had, he had an M16. We just stopped discussing it.
AR18 possibly?
 

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Robinson Arms used to occasionally tease a belt fed conversion for the, no longer produced, M96.

A very few highly skilled M96 owners scrounged enough M63 parts, fabricated other parts, and made some belted conversions for their rifles.

I was reading on a different forum that recently Rob Arms has been mulling over the idea of bringing the M96 back, as well as the belt fed kit. I would definitely buy one.
 
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