I think I’m right in saying that this was one of the very first FCC 416 kits in the UK – if not the first. I’d also wager that it was Project PTW’s initial foray into FCC 416 territory; and PPTW has probably built more of these kits than any other PTW gunsmith, outside the FCC guys themselves.
FCC’s kit is the only off the shelf 416 with a fully CNC receiver set. That’s why it remains the gold standard. Until it became available, the PTW user’s only real choice was to match a Prime Colt M4 or M16 lower with a converted GBB 416 upper (Iron Airsoft or VFC being top drawer choices). Similarly, there was only one grip to use at the time – G&P’s TD style Battlegrip. However, more recently, FCC has followed its 416 kit with a TD style grip – which many consider to be a more accurate depiction than G&P’s. The twist to the tale is that FCC are now offering their version of the Battlegrip free, to 416 early adopters.
This is Simon (Tangman) from Gray Fox’s 416 and it’s a masterclass in Mil Done Right.
I’ve got to hand it to the Gray Fox guys. They are uncompromising in their acquisition of kit and have great taste. I’ll never be a mil sim airsofter, but I admire Gray Fox’s doctrine and I owe them a huge dept in influencing my appreciation of mil builds.
This build is Simon’s interpretation of a Combat Applications Group (CAG) blaster, circa 2008-2010. As a notoriously shadowy US Tier 1 counter-terrorism element, In The Wild pics of CAG operators – where available – are subject to OPSEC and PERSEC. This makes the job of finding pics then sifting them for prevailing trends and era identifiers all the more challenging.
Simon describes his choice in accessories:
The accessories I chose all have a function. Before I transitioned to the PTW platform, I’d been using Redi Mags and I’d grown rather accustomed to them.
Needless to say, Simon has included a Redi Mag on his 416.
The ATPIAL fitted has IR capabilities. It comes into its own when combined with NVGs. Head mounted night vision is strange at first. The user has to adapt their cheek weld and head position to accommodate the goggles. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s like shooting from the hip, but there’s a certain similarity.
The Scoutlight doesn’t need much of an explanation. I chose to remove the standard rail-grabber mount. Instead I use an offset mount. This delivers a more comfortable, natural grip for the supporting hand.
The Eotech is a great optic. However, as the batteries on top indicate, the battery life is poor. This was accentuated even more when I started using an Aimpoint Micro – which of course has one of the most efficient circuits out there.
I was lucky enough to handle one of PPTW’s FCC 416 builds at Hit Takers last month. I have to admit, I was taken aback by the beauty of the anodizing and the sturdiness of the build in general. In addition, the balance of the gun is spot on and it doesn’t have that flyaway front end feel of some aluminium barreled PTWs.
I have absolutely no doubt that Simon’s 416 handles just as good as it looks.
FCC HK416D Conversion Kit
Tango Down Battlegrip*
BE Meyers Flashider*
Colt M4 Stock*
KAC QD sling mount*
John Masen Butt Pad
Daniel Defense QD Sling Mount
Surefire Scoutlight & S&S Low Pro Scoutlight mount*
ATPIAL & Surefire Dual Switch*
Aimpoint 3x Magnifier & FTS Mount*
Boonie Packer Redi Mag MK1 QA
RS Rail Mounted QD Sling Mount with Anti Rotation links
RS S&S Precision Low Pro Scoutlight mount
FCC TD Style Battlegrip