Thanks to the courtesy of Fabryka Broni, MILMAG Military Magazine became one of the first acquirers of a semi-automatic variant of MSBS C16 FB-M2 rifle. We purchased the weapon on the 4th of April. It's important to mention, that the civilian version of the firearm was developed in record time! Semi-automatic MSBS was announced in September 2017, just when the contract for 53.000 assault rifles for Wojska Obrony Terytorialnej (Territorial Defense Forces) was signed.
Even well-established manufacturers usually take at least a couple of years to develop a semi-automatic variant of a military battle rifle. Meanwhile, Polish sports shooters can purchase GROT S16 FB-M1 just 4 months after introduction to the Polish Army. This pace is unheard of, especially considering 10-year period it took for the Radom Sport to materialize, after the wz. 96A Beryl was introduced into armed forces.
As MILMAG managed to find out, the first series of Grot S16 FB-M1 rifles will be marked with celebratory stamping, memorializing the 100 years of Polish independence.
Grot S16 FB-M1 is a semi-automatic variant of the MSBS C16 FB-M2 assault rifle currently being introduced into Polish Army. On the right side of the upper receiver, behind the brass deflector, Poland's emblem – the eagle – is placed. In comparison to military MSBS C16 FB-M1, rifle sling attachment points are relocated to the side walls of the handguard. Handguard has M-LOK slots located at 5 of it's surfaces (4 per side). To comply with Magpul requirements, stylized M logo (for M-LOK) is stamped onto the guard as well.
Firearm fully accommodates both right- and left-handed shooters. This does not only concerns the weapon's controls (which are placed on both sides). Grot can also eject brass to either left or right, depending on the bolt orientation and configuration of the ejection port.
The biggest difference to the military model is the trigger mechanism which only allows for semi-auto fire. Bolt carrier is also modified – it lacks the 2 ridges that work with the upper shoulders of the automatic trigger group and 6 weights of the bounce-back reducing system found in the military variant.
Army's version muzzle device is fixed in place, together with the bayonet lug. The civilian model does not accommodate mounting of a bayonet so the muzzle is threaded and can accept any muzzle device compatible with 1/2-28 UNEF-2A thread. As taken out of the box, Grot S16 FB-M1 has a 5-slot birdcage-type flash hider, similar to A2 model as seen on M16/M4 rifles.
The last difference is visible on the lower receiver. Civilian model is missing the pictogram for automatic fire mode (3 vertical lines behind a stylized bullet). Everything else (handguard, stock, safety lever and pistol grip), is identical and interchangeable with the Polish Army's newest assault rifle. The firearm is equipped with an easy to change barrel, which can be unbolted with a provided Allen wrench.
Grot S16 FB-M1 is delivered in a polymer, foam-lined case. Inside the case, protected with a blue plastic wrapping, the happy buyer will find the rifle itself, one 30-round semi-translucent magazine, cleaning kit, user manual and a warranty card. The manual is 56-pages long and seriously extended compared to the military variant. The magazine provided is made of green polymer (the same material is used for Beryl magazines), made by Fabryka Broni. Triangular company`s logo doubles as a release button and allows for mag disassembly for cleaning. The body has markings for 20 and 30 rounds. Folding BUIS are included, so are 3 sections of NAR/Picatinny rails compatible with M-LOK system located on the handguard.
According to the manual, Grot weight is 3,6 kg and it measures 681 mm with a folded stock and 843/903 mm with deployed stock. The 60 mm is the adjustment range of the stock. Height is 237 mm with iron sights in folded position. Width is 39/86 mm (the second value includes the charging handle). Grot S16 FB-M1 barrel is 406 mm (16 inches). It has 6 rifling grooves and the twist rate is 228 mm / 1:9. Muzzle velocity equals 870 m/s and the muzzle energy is 1600 J. Practical rate of fire is 90-100 rounds per minute. The manual defines the weapon's lifespan at 10.000 shots.