US M63 ''Stoner'' 5.56mm Rifle

  • Firearms Thru History
  • 1 min

By Crusader1307

Designed by famed Gun Maker Eugene Stoner (who designed The M-16 Rifle, among others), The Cadillac-Gauge Company manufactured The Model 63 Rifle for exclusive use by American Special Operations Forces deployed to Vietnam in 1963. The US Government contracted some 4,000 of the nicknamed “Stoner” Rifles. Unique for being multi-purpose, The Model 63 could be quickly converted to Rifle, Light Machine Gun and Carbine. It was chambered for the 5.56mm NATO Round. The Model 63 weighed only 10-pounds and was 30-inches long. It could used a 35-pounds ammunition Clip, Drum or disintegrating belt-link. Rated at 1,000-yards in minimum range, The Model 63 was said to exceed over 2,000-yards. As effective as it was, it was still very expensive to produce (well over $1,000 USD). This, coupled with the fact that it did not hold up well to the rigors of the Jungles of Southeast Asia, found The Model 63 Contract cancelled with 2-years (1965). Nonetheless, The “Stoner” saw continued use in many Foreign Armies until 1984.