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A local police supply place took in some rifles from the Department of Corrections. They didn't sell well, due to the odd configuration of no flash hider, long barrel, and collapsible stocks. The prices wended their way down to $475, and I finally convinced myself to get one today.

I've never been an AR fan. I had a GAU5/A issued to me in the Air Force, and various versions at my disposal in the FBI, including an M16A1 that was a joy to shoot on full auto. They were always a work gun to me so except for an SP1 I had briefly I haven't owned one.

I like the full length set up and the long round handguards of this one.





The serial number makes it a 1997 MT6551.



The barrel is marked like this:



The stock is a Rock River replacement.



It cleaned up well and should be a good shooter.

Here's my question: Is it a simple matter to thread the barrel for a flash hider? Are they readily available? Are the bolt-on ones any good? Should I just get used to the strange look of the unadorned barrel?
 

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You can get the barrel threaded and have a flash suppressor of your choice added. I wouldn't do it myself as the threading in specific to the flash suppressor and I'm not sure, but I believe the threading has to started just so as the suppressor has to be "clocked" just right for the slots to orient properly. Someone else can say whether that's a fact. There are numerous types of flash suppressors on the market...not just the Colt type.

Personally I'd replace that collapsible buttstock with a Magpul type...but that's just me.
 
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Wow, congrats that's a really good price for that rifle! If it was me and I have extra money I would get 2 rifles, probably upgrade one with a better collapsible stock and the other with a fixed A2 stock.

I had been a long time Colt AR owner for around 46 years now started with my SP1 rifle, had 12 or so Colt rifles and carbines, currently I have 3 carbines, one MT6601 rifle (with USGI Colt M16A2 upper half), and a RRA (Rock River Arms) A4 flat top 9mm carbine.

I had a pre ban Colt R6551 Sporter Target rifle from 1991 to 2001 like yours except mine had an A2 fixed buttstock, and A2 flash hider.

With all muzzle devices with bolt on set screws they will eventually launch when you're firing it downrange, it's just a matter of time.

Best thing is the threaded muzzle, then using a crush washer and the normal A2 flash suppressor, I never had a problem with this setup which all my factory made Colt AR had.

During the ban when they didn't have flash suppressors I never bought any AR that time because I hated what the Gov't was interfering with guns features that doesn't benefit anyone, I'm glad that law was finally gone in 2004.

It would be better to send it to a competent AR gunsmith, if you don't know anybody in your area, just send your upper half to lets say ADCO Firearms (adcofirearms.com) and have them thread your muzzle per mil-spec AR design. They could also install your flash hider if you wish.

I noticed that your collapsible stock have the RRA mark which means that they used a commercial size buffer tube (1.163" to 1.173" outer diameter - which are larger size than mil-spec).

No issues with that RRA commercial size buttstock and buffer tube except in the future if you wanted to use other styles of buttstock you would have more stock choices if you have the mil-spec size buffer tube (1.145" to 1.150" diameter) which the Colt factory always uses on all their carbines.

I have an RRA 9mm carbine but I didn't use their commercial size buffer tube when I built it myself, I used a mil-spec size tube which I was glad I did because I changed my buttstocks on it several times already, all using a wide range of stocks with mil-spec size.
 
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I'd change the barrel for a Colt A2 barrel, with bayo lug & A2 Compensator.

Sell the old barrel.

Swap stock for a Colt A2, & sell the old one.
 
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