Colt Tactical .22

by
posted on August 26, 2009
2009826-coltm4fullmain_fs.jpg

Capitalizing on the growing popularity for tactical-style semi-automatic rifles and the recent increase in firearm and ammunition prices, Carl Walther Germany, through a license agreement with New Colt Holding Corp., has introduced four Colt Tactical Rimfire semi-automatic rifles in .22 LR and is importing them through Umarex USA.

At first glance, the four rifles look like standard .223 Rem./5.56x45 mm NATO AR-15s. Walther took great care in creating accurate replicas for aesthetic appeal. The rifles are available with 16 and 21-inch barrel lengths with or without full-length Picatinny quad-railing.

Umarex USA shipped the Colt .22 Tactical M4, which features a 16.2-inch barrel and flat-top receiver with removable carry handle, for review. Both the upper and lower aluminum receivers are die cast and later CNC-machined, and the die cast zinc alloy slide housing and trigger housing hold all internal moving parts. The barrel sleeve is CNC-machined from high-strength aluminum, and is later anodized.

The main spring is positioned in the upper part of the slide housing just behind the slide. The rear of the spring is held in place by an adjustable screw, which can be turned with the provided Allen wrench to increase or decrease bolt speed for a particular ammunition. It is accessible by disengaging the takedown pin and pivoting the upper receiver forward, presenting itself just below the rear of the non-reciprocating charging handle. Walther recommends that the user refrain from disassembling the firearm beyond this point, as the slide is not readily extractable like the AR-15 bolt carrier group. Cleaning requirements can be met at this stage of disassembly.The .22 Tactical Colt M4 uses straight blowback operation rather than direct gas-impingement found in most standard AR-15s.

The spring-loaded internal extractor is on the right side of the breechblock face, and the external ejector is a pin fixed to the slide housing. The internal slide catch is a 1 1/2-inch lever hinged to the left of the front underside of the slide housing. Spring tension holds it down until the magazine follower extension pushes it upward after the last shot is fired, thereby holding the slide rearward.

The controls are similar to those of the AR in appearance, but less so in function. The plastic safety selector lever rotates an unusual 180 degrees to engage the internal safety. The lever is on the left side of the lower receiver just above the pistol grip and extends to the right side as a safety indicator. The magazine release is on the right side of the lower receiver above the trigger guard by the magazine well. Although the bolt stop paddle is on the top left side of the lower receiver by the magazine well and the forward assist plunger is located under the charging handle, neither serves any purpose beyond aesthetic appeal.

The carrying handle features a rear sight identical to that of typical AR-15s: two-position short- and normal-range rear aperture; right-side windage knob; and an elevation knob. Because this is a replica, the markings on the knobs are not set for .22 LR ammunition; one may, however, still use the knobs to adjust the sights and zero the rifle. The front sight post is also adjustable for elevation.

Initial function tests results proved favorable with Federal AutoMatch. We made adjustments to the bolt screw after a single stoppage with Remington HV, and subsequent adjustments were made after more stoppages with Winchester HV Super-X. We contacted engineers at Walther to discuss the problem.

Walther engineers informed us that certain ammunition brands might cause problems, but also that the rifle should not have had the number of stoppages we encountered. Although there was significant residue buildup, it appears that adjusting the screw is generally unnecessary. It should only be adjusted if constant and continual stoppages occur with higher-velocity ammunition.

After cleaning the rifle and returning the screw to its original position, stoppages were minimal. During a weekend excursion, a Rifleman staff member and his family fired in excess of 450 rounds with standard, high-velocity and hyper-velocity ammunition with only two stoppages. Subsequent accuracy tests totaled 150 rounds with no stoppages.

The Colt .22 Tactical Rimfire is a good rifle for the young shooter interested in getting involved with tactical-style firearms, as well as the older, cost-conscious plinker, and anyone else who just likes shooting rapid-fire .22s. It's fun to shoot, and as one of the young men who went on the weekend excursion attested, "This is the most awesome thing I've ever done!"

Manufacturer: Carl Walther Germany; Carl-walther.de
Importer: Umarex USA Inc.; (479) 646-4210
Caliber: .22 LR
Action Type: Semi-automatic, rimfire rifle
Receiver: Aluminum
Barrel: 16.2"
Rifling: Six-groove, 1:133⁄4" RH twist
Magazine: 30-round detachable box
Sights: Detachable carry handle iron sights, picatinny rail for attachments
Trigger: Single-stage, 6 lbs., 9 ozs.
Stock: Length of pull, 137⁄8" (extended); drop at heel, 1½"; drop at comb, 1½"
Overall Length: 31"-34"
Weight: 6 lbs.
Accessories: Wrench, Allen wrenches, owner's manual
Suggested Retail Price: $599

Latest

SG Rossi Gallery Lead
SG Rossi Gallery Lead

#SundayGunday: Rossi Gallery

Get a closer look at the Rossi Gallery, the latest addition to our #SundayGunday series.

Recipe: Honey Ginger Crane

Sandhill crane has earned its reputation as one of the best-eating migratory waterfowl, and can be enjoyed in any dish where tender, delicious protein is desired. This recipe is a great way to enjoy this tasty bird, where the flavor of the meat stands up to the rest of the dish.

Leupold Announces RX-FullDraw 5 Laser Rangefinder

Leupold has announced the launch of the RX-FullDraw 5, the latest and most advanced addition to the company’s FullDraw family of laser rangefinders designed for bowhunters.

New for 2022: Federal Force X2 Shorty Shotshell

Federal has combined the power of two of its newest technologies to create a shotshell option that changes the nature of self-defense. The new Force X2 Shorty shells measure just 1¾ inches but hold a payload of six 00 segmenting buckshot engineered to split into two equal pieces on impact.

New for 2022: Mossberg 940 Pro Turkey

The new 940 Pro Turkey features a choice of a 24- or 18.5-inch barrel, a HiViz fiber-optic sight for quick target acquisition, Mossberg’s X-Factor ported choke tube for improved pattern density and is covered in Mossy Oak Greenleaf camo.

New for 2022: Survival Filter Active All Terrain Filtration Bottle

Through a partnership with Nalgene, Survival Filter has produced the new Active All Terrain, a lightweight, portable squeeze filtration bottle built for performance and convenience.

Interests



Get the best of American Hunter delivered to your inbox.