View Full Version : Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE upper

15 March 2010, 14:58
Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE upper

This overview of the Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE upper will be to document the points of interest, and important features that this upper receiver group provides. We will walk though the complete weapon through images, and talk a bit about the specs.

The Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE upper was sent to us stock, with no upgrades or enhancements. The unit sells for $525, and is available through the Spike's Tactical website at the below link, or through any of the online or local Spike's Tactical Dealers.



This thread does not permit comments to be posted directly, please use the below link to visit the comment thread for this topic.


15 March 2010, 15:03
Starting from the front of the upper, we see a properly timed standard A2 flash suppressor (FS), or as my Military colleagues would refer to it, the A2 compensator.

The A2 FS is standard issue on almost every current military M16A1 (yes they are still sitting in vaults waiting), M16A2, and M4 variant. They are basic, strong, and work well. If you are looking for something a little more high speed, the A2 FS comes off and you can drop on whatever makes you happy.

The barrel is 16" M4 profile.


15 March 2010, 15:09
The Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE Front Sight Base (FSB) is the proper "F" base, and is parkerized underneath. The proper "F" Front Sight Base is important as the use of the wrong base will offset your rear sight choices, and there are still manufacturers who use the incorrect FSB causing aggravation for shooters who were unaware of the differences. While the difference in height between the "F" and non-F are small, its enough to cause issues while trying to sight in.

Tom Miller (CEO) pointed out the FSB is forged from Carbon steel, heat treated, and phosphated per the Mil-Spec. The Taper pins are properly heat treated and phosphated per the Mil-Spec too. If you have ever tried to tap out the pins on a FSB and found the pins mushrooming, you know what its like to work with cheaper parts. Those issues aren't found here.

The Front Sight Post (FSP) is the standard square FSP.

A bayonet lug and coated sling swivel are standard.

The gas tube roll pin is evenly inserted, and is not deformed on either end.


15 March 2010, 15:16
The barrel is 4150 Chromoly Vanadium Alloy, with a 1:7 twist. This is not marked on the front of the barrel as many people are used to seeing. Instead, it is marked under the handguards. Magnetic particle testing is conducted on every barrel, and each is phosphate coated, including under the Front Sight Base (FSB). While the military obviously uses the 14.5" barrel on the M4, the rest of the barrel appears to fall inline with your issued upper.

The barrels of the Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE are individually proof fired and MP Inspected.

The 16" M4 profile barrel is using a carbine length gas system.

In speaking with Tom Miller (CEO of ST), he pointed out that Spike's Tactical is proud to use barrels which are turned on center and have threads which are 100% concentric to the bore. The importance of this is well known in the suppressor community. More than a few people have found a baffle or end strike due to a barrel that wasn't quite squared away.


15 March 2010, 15:29
Double heat shield M4 hand guards are included with each upper. Its hard to get all that excited about basic M4 handguards, but the double heat shields make a difference for shooters as the barrel heats up. The handguards lock up tight, and the play in them is minimal at best.



15 March 2010, 15:41
Gas tube alignment on the ST 16" M4 LE is what I would consider text book perfect. While I did not pull the gas tube and check the torque value on the barrel nut, I did throw a wrench on it to check and see if it felt loose. No problems in that regard. Most readers are probably aware that a misaligned gas tube will cause interference with the carrier key, and that it doesn't take much to create immediate problems. However, I think its worth noting that even small alignment issues will eventually create wear on the gas tube, which makes for longer term trouble.

Regardless of whether you want to get worked about about gas tube, carrier keys, and perfect alignment, its not an issue with this upper receiver.


15 March 2010, 15:45
Spike's Tactical M4 flat top upper receivers and charging handle (CH) are machined from a 7075 T6 Mil-Spec Forging with Mil-Spec Type III Hardcoat Anodized finish. The receiver includes T-markings and the Spike's Tactical logo on top. Each of the receivers includes M4 feedramps. The interior of the receiver has a coating of dryfilm lubricant, something easily ignored due to its even application.

The ejection port closes securely, and opens without undue force. The ejection port spring is installed properly, and the e-clip is in place.

The Forward Assist (FA) is secure, and functions without issue.

Machining on the receiver is clean, and the anodizing is a deep black and free of blemishes.




15 March 2010, 16:22
The M4 feed ramps are machined and finished nicely. The receiver to barrel extension interface is conducive to proper feed from the magazine, and there are no rough areas noted.


15 March 2010, 16:27
Getting into the internals of the upper, we next take a look at the Bolt Carrier Group.

The Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE comes with a M16 Bolt Carrier. Shown below, you can see the Bolt Carrier. A quick inspection shows the machine work is top quality, and the parkerized finish is even. The inside of the carrier and gas key are chrome lined. The lining is also even, and without blemish or high spots.

A check of the Carrier Key reveals proper staking without getting carried away. Spike's Tactical lists the Carrier key as forged and Milspec, and using grade 8 fasteners.

Most notable is the Spike's Tactical logo on the BCG leaving no question as to who's part you are looking at.



15 March 2010, 17:00
Next we'll check out the bolt.

With the first image we can see the bolt. Spike's Tactical lists the bolt as shot peened, proof fired, and MP Inspected. This goes for each bolt in the Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE, these are not batch tested. Each bolt is marked MP.

The extractors are machined from solid bar stock, heat treated, and phosphate coated. You can see from the pictures that these come with the Milspec black insert, and viton O-ring. These touches should ensure positive extraction with all ammunition, even if you've been less than stellar with your cleaning of the chamber.

The gas rings are tight, and provide a solid seal. Placing the bold into the carrier is reassuring, and may remind you that some of your other BCGs are nearing gas ring replacement.




15 March 2010, 17:03
The firing pin (FP) is a standard M16 firing pin. A careful check shows this FP to be smooth, free of cracks, chips, or any unevenness.


15 March 2010, 17:08
I threw this image up as I thought it was important, and worth sharing. Each Spike's Tactical upper come test fired, as do their complete rifles. While that may seem trivial to some people, its nice to know that someone is overseeing the builds, checking function and verifying QC before the item goes out the door.

The second picture shows the Spike's Tactical ST-T2 heavy buffer. It weighs in at 4.3oz, and is filled with Tungsten powder. The ST-T2 is CNC machined from aluminum bar stock. I use a few of these on builds of my own, and they function nicely in the role of a heavy buffer.



15 March 2010, 17:10
The images below show what the Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE Upper looks like out of the box. It arrived in a heavy cardboard box, and sealed in a plastic bag. Not much chance of the upper being damaged in transit unless your delivery team really hates you.



15 March 2010, 17:18
Below are two pictures of the Spike's Tactical 16" M4 LE Upper on a lower receiver.

The first image shows the basic upper wearing a LMT fixed rear sight, with a basic stock and pistol grip.

The second image shows the same upper, this time upgraded to wear a Magpul MOE stock, MOE+ pistol grip, MOE handguard, trigger guard, ASAP and PMAG (all in Foliage Green).



15 March 2010, 17:24
The sum of the parts used in this build is impressive. It appears that Spike's Tactical has gone out of their way to ensure this is a top quality upper. Whats more impressive than the ability to spec top quality components is to be able to do this while passing on an affordable price to the consumer.

Spike's Tactical has a series of upgrades that a user can order, which include rails, handguards, sights, and offer the ability to make it AWB compliant for those shooters who are stuck living with a, "Assault Weapon Ban" in their state.

Take a look at the below website for additional information.



This thread does not permit comments to be posted directly, please use the below link to visit the comment thread for this topic.