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Colt Expanse M4 Carbine

breamfisherbreamfisher Senior MemberPosts: 13,493 Senior Member
An... interesting... entry-level AR.

Pros: Colt name and quality, $699 MSRP, 1:7 twist barrel, no silly M4 barrel contour, fairly mil-spec. Built on an M4 upper receiver

Cons: Colt name and quality, for the MSRP you get no bayonet lug, no rear sight, no chrome lining, one aluminum mag, and no forward assist or dust cover. You can mount a dust cover or forward assist, as it's built on an M4 upper and has all the stuff there, it's just not included.

Seriously. The forward assist boss is there, machined out, and has all the pin holes. They just filled it with a plug.

What's the deal, Colt? Why not just go with a slick-side upper? Or one with just a shell deflector?

Expanse Carbine upper one in image. Sorry, but it's the best image I've found of that side of the rifle.
Overkill is underrated.


  • Elk creekElk creek Senior Member Posts: 6,450 Senior Member
    Colt is again about 15 years behind consumer demand.
    Aim higher, or get a bigger gun.
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,493 Senior Member
    For... $20 in parts (retail) they could have had the forward assist and port cover there. Instead they went with an $8 or so plug.

    Not sure what the logic is...
    Overkill is underrated.
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 21,074 Senior Member
    :roll: Their "infinite wisdom" strikes again :roll:
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,249 Senior Member
    They have some good ideas - they're selling 6920's with no handguards, stocks, or rear sights, based on the notion that there's a lot of people who are going to strip all that off and build to taste. Saves a couple hundred bucks in many cases and is all to the good.

    The combination of no chrome lining and no forward assist (granted, coupled with incompatible powder) was the package that gave us grief in Southeast Asia. Yes, we have M4 feed ramps and better extractors with MUCH burlier springs now, but ALL of that stuff was added to the gun for a reason. If my charging handle only retracts the bolt, I pretty much demand a way to push it forward.

    I dunno. . .the world is full of gun shoppers who are penny-wise and function-stupid, and if Colt or anyone else can market a product to separate them from their cash, more power to 'em, I guess. The Remington 870 was a cheap shotgun to begin with and Big Greed has only made the civilian market one more so - and they still seem to sell. At least in the case of this Colt, you aren't forced into an upper that you can't add the proper parts to later - as you are with so many of the other budget AR's.

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,249 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    They are banking on the queer for pony crowd to buy them.

    I'll grant you that The Horse can have a strong influence on the weak-minded. But I've got to say after having service-inspected a lot of AR's that 50 years experience building the same rifle under direct military oversight does give the positive benefit of a very thorough assembly checklist that gives them an insanely low "miss" rate compared to the other guys. Thus far after well over a hundred of them, I've had one selector that the detent notches were a little rough on - they sent the perfect replacement in under a week.

    I dunno. . .this "Expanse" doesn't thrill me any more than the other deliberately half-assed AR's, but I'd probably pick it over the others of the breed for those reasons, as well as the ability to "upgrade to standard". It IS a cheap way to get a Colt. . . I guess after my 14 years of witnessing it first hand on a daily basis, I'm more irritated and depressed by idiot gun shop customers than the methods manufacturers use to bait them.

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • tubabucknuttubabucknut Banned Posts: 3,520 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    They are banking on the queer for pony crowd to buy them.


    No thanks.
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,493 Senior Member
    I do like some of Colt's ideas. As Bigslug said, the 6920 with no furniture or sights is a great idea.

    I'm not even worried about a lack of chrome lining. Most folks really don't need it. And if someone does need that, I'll wager they're not getting this rifle. But having an upper that allows a forward assist and dust cover, but lacks those parts screams of CHEAP. Like I said, the parts are what, $20-$40 retail? The plug is pinned in place, so you're not saving that much on labor.

    I'll admit my Del-Ton is a hobby level AR, but so far it's been totally reliable as long as I'm not running it super dirty and using TullAmmo (when I had malfs with that ammo I heard that they were having possible QC issues) but I really don't blame the ammo. I was trying to get it to fail at the time. I succeeded. The Colt probably holds its value well, but I'm not sure most users really would be able to exploit the additional quality the dollars spent will get you. Kinda like a Springfield vs. a Wilson or Les Baer, or Squire vs. Fender.
    Overkill is underrated.
  • tubabucknuttubabucknut Banned Posts: 3,520 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »

    Look at the sheer numbers of jackasses like me who assemble them at their kitchen table in their underwear.
    It's not a difficult gun. Pretty well proven and copied designs.
    Of course there IS quality difference in ARs. But, after a certain price point it becomes nothing more than queer for gear types that drive to the boutique AR market.

    Other than missing the dust cover and FA, it's not a bad looking entry level rifle. The lack of a bayonet lug means ZERO to me, because seriously. Who the flip puts a bayonet on an AR?
  • EliEli Senior Member Posts: 3,074 Senior Member
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 6,083 Senior Member

    You reckon that mental midget blew his face off or finally just floated away full of his own hot air?
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
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