M-16 nail gun

DeWalt's lineup of quality powertools just got some shock and awe with this brand-colored M16 "nail gun," the spectacular creation of David Wiggins.
I’d just picked up a new (to me) M-16 and was in the process of fixing it up a little. It needed new furniture anyway, so I sourced the safety yellow stock, guard, and grip. Then, I went down to the DeWalt factory service place a few miles from the house to get a sticker. There, I saw they had brand new battery casings, so I picked up one of those too. I got home, found a short magazine , and got to work
The battery-cum-magazine is lovely:
Here's an alternative offered by a commenter at its Toolmonger thread:
DeWalt-16 [Toolmonger via LikeCool and Ubergizmo]

About Rob Beschizza

Rob Beschizza is the Managing Editor of Boing Boing. He's @beschizza on Twitter and can be found on Facebook too. Try your luck at besc...@gmail.com  
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35 Responses to M-16 nail gun

  1. Rob Beschizza says:

    If you follow the links, you’ll find out exactly what gun it is!

  2. knifie_sp00nie says:

    Unless that guy has a Class III license, it’s actually an AR-15. The difference is that the AR-15 is semi-automatic (one shot per pull of the trigger) and the M-16 is capable of fully automatic fire. When you have the collapsible stock and short barrel, it’s closer to what the military calls the M4.

    Whatever it is, it’s a fun concept.

  3. Anonymous says:

    gun nuts scare me.

  4. addlepated says:

    Hey, I know the guy who owns the Milwaukee AR!

  5. Anonymous says:

    It’s not whether an AR-15/M-16 variant is fully automatic or not that determines the model number. The fully-auto carbine version of the M-16 used by some select units in Vietnam (very similar to today’s M-4) was called the CAR-15. Colt names it one thing, the military another, Bushmaster another, etc… And obviously the US isn’t the only country using M-16 variants; making the name-game even more ridiculous. There are fully-auto AR-15s and semi-auto only M-16s. (Don’t forget that the M-16 is also an anti-personnel mine currently in the US inventory.)

    Whatever – Kudos to some creative custom firearms work!

  6. Anonymous says:

    That’s unfair. I’ll rephrase it and say that gun fanatics scare me. Of all the things to get excited, why guns?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Who doesn’t have a Class III Federal Firearms License????

  8. designguy78 says:

    “…and the M-16 is capable of fully automatic fire.”

    Actually, no it’s not. It has three round burst, single fire, and safety. That’s it, no full auto. They got rid of full auto after Vietnam. Soldiers were wasting too much ammo by firing willy nilly. Three round burst allows you to keep your target sighted while firing quickly enough. And yes, it’s more of an M-4 than an M-16 anyway.

  9. 2wheels says:


    “Nope, not a nail gun. ”

    Of course it’s not a real fucking nailgun.

    Rob B.
    My comment was for the benefit of Lobster in comment #24, who didn’t read the post or comments very carefully.

  10. Anonymous says:

    i gotta learn how to make one of these for myself

  11. 2wheels says:

    Nope, not a nail gun. Follow the link over to Toolmonger and the actual owner discusses his rifle and why and how he modded it the way he did.

  12. Lobster says:

    OK, guys, I know everyone loves to know everything about guns but it’s not an M4, it’s not an M16, it’s not an AR-15… It is a NAIL GUN.

  13. toxonix says:

    I don’t know about y’all, but I prefer Milwaukee over DeWalt myself. Course, these days they might all be the same underneath.

  14. dballing says:

    I think there’s a little “play” going on here with regard to AR-15/M-16.

    (Referencing the picture #5 posted)

    1.) There is an engraved “ROCK AND ROLL” but there is no sign of whatever would have previously been engraved there for 3-round burst

    2.) On the left hand edge of the picture, on the lower receiver, you can see “-15″, in approximately the right place for the model designation to be engraved.

    Now, I don’t have my rifle handy, as I’m at work, but I’d say it’s more likely that he mocked up a selector switch that’s “not useful” for the purposes of the photos, so that he could have it point in the opposite direction of “safe” to where he had engraved “rock and roll”, but that this is still just an AR-15.

    Doesn’t make the mod any less cool, but just saying….

  15. joflow says:

    This is what Chris and Snoop needed on The Wire.

  16. Anonymous says:

    and so the tiny flake of snow wanting only to fall and be seen for what it is, sets off an avalanche down the back side of the hill.
    I think the gun thingy painted like a dewalt tool thingy is clever & neat…

  17. Anonymous says:

    Why does the post title say nail gun? Its clearly still a full functioning fire arm.

  18. Anonymous says:

    “Unless that guy has a Class III license, it’s actually an AR-15.”

    One of the other close-ups at Toolmonger shows a selective-fire switch on the left side of the receiver.

  19. semiotix says:

    @1: you mean I can’t get an automatic nail gun?! Curse those meddling bureaucrats!

  20. technogeek says:

    I think I’d be more impressed if it was a nail gun that looked like a rifle. Better pun.

  21. strider_mt2k says:

    Sorry, it says here you are insane.

    That limits you to three automatic nail guns or less…

  22. Anonymous says:

    Looks like an M-16. Or it might be an M4/M4A1. Check out this pic from toolmonger.


    Rock and roll!

  23. GregLondon says:

    safety selector photo of a normal m16

  24. wayneco says:

    That’s a full auto lower with a permanently installed sear. You can see the sear’s pivot pin yourselves in the photo


    the pin is right above the “FIRE” selection. If this were an AR (semi-auto) selector it also would not be able to be moved all the way forward into the “FULL AUTO” position as it is in this picture.

  25. zuzu says:

    Sorry, it says here you are insane.

    “Potentially dangerous.”

    The Weird Technology panel at HOPE Number Six (The Last HOPE starts this Friday, btw) explained how powder-driven nail guns (e.g. Hilti) are really just retrofit from the path-dependency of firearm development. They really are just guns where the bullets have been replaced by nails; they use the same standard caliber sizes and everything.

    This was also showcased in The Wire when Snoop buys a nailgun.

  26. gd23 says:

    “Now, I don’t have my rifle handy, as I’m at work”

    This might be the closest we get to a sane American for some time – elect them president quick. (I jest)

  27. redteam says:

    So is this what military contractors use?

  28. kavandje says:

    I guess you’d need to be German — or at least speak it — to appreciate that I think modifying the sticker to read GeWalt would have been funnier…

  29. Anonymous says:

    If you look right above the word “fire” you will see a pin that is only present on a M16/M4. It is the pin that hold the the auto-sear in place.
    The pin is not present on a AR15 unless it is a pre-1986 conversion to a M16. The selector switch on a AR15 doesn’t go the 3rd position unless you install several full auto components.

  30. nigel1965 says:

    All the M-16A1 rifles I was issued in the army (1983-86)were fully automatic. Three round bursts were a bit of a trick. It was a matter of good reflexes and only pulling the trigger very briefly.

  31. Akin says:

    Well, if we want to be technical about fully-automatic fire, the M16, M16A1, and the M16A3 are all capable of full-auto. The M16A2 and the M16A4 are the ones with a three-round burst setting…

  32. Rob Beschizza says:

    “Nope, not a nail gun. ”

    Of course it’s not a real fucking nailgun.

  33. Ronald Pottol says:

    A friend who was in ROTC in the early 1980s used an M16 that said Matel on it, they made some of the plastic parts for the early ones.

  34. Anonymous says:

    They didn’t get rid of the full-auto M16 after Vietnam. I was rocking an M16A1 (made by GM Hydramatic Division! – I remember it quite well) in Basic Training/AIT in 1988/89.

    Also, we had the later M16A2s that were full auto up to where I got out in 1996 – US Army Reserve unit in Michigan.

    M16 = meh . . .. I liked the M60 7.62 machine gun mo’ better. :)

  35. Halloween Jack says:

    Well, if we want to be technical

    As if you have to ask…

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