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From: (Bart Bobbitt)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: M1 Garand recommendations?
Date: 14 Dec 1993 19:52:43 -0500

Bret Elliott ( wrote:

: What to look for when buying a Garand?
: #From what I understand this rifle went thru several changes over its
: years of production and that certain manufacturers produced better
: weapons then others did. What is the most desirable year and maker from
: a shooters stand point?

Springfield Armory (Springfield, MA) made the best ones.  Their fit
and tolerances were the best.

Those made by Winchester tended to have tolerances on the bigger end
of specifications.

International Harvester ones fall somewhere inbetween.

: What should I look for when inspecting an M1?

I'd first make sure its receiver is not a reweld.  Check about mid-point
in the receiver.  If there looks like a discoloration all the way around
the receiver's middle section, it's probably a reweld and may not be safe.

Run a couple of cleaning patches through the bore to remove any pit or
corrosion hiding oil or grease.  Then check the bore from the breech  
with a dentist's mirror.  It should look nice and shiny.  The 
rifling should be well defined at the throat and appear to be the same
height throughout the barrel.  There should be no ding marks at the
muzzle end. 

Verify the safety can be easily engaged and that it works.

Using a primed case (no bullet or powder), load it, but keep the bolt
out of battery such that the locking lugs are just barely engaged in
their receiver recesses.  Wedge a small peice of soft metal between
the right-hand lug and the receiver, then pull the trigger.  The firing
pin must not drive forward and pop the primer.  This checks the safety
bridge's ability to hold back the firing pin unless the bolt is closed.
Although not as good as using the right gage, it's a better test than
none at all.

With a clip full of new, empty cases, press it into the rifle gently.
Just as the full clip reaches full insertion, the bolt catch should
release, then let the bolt go forward and start to pick up the top round.
Again, this tests the timing reasonably well, but not as good as a timing
block.  If the bolt releases before the clip is all the way in, the rifle
is out of time and won't function properly.  Don't use resized cases as
they are larger in diameter than new ones and that increase in dimension
will give false timing information.  The full clip shouldn't be more than 
about one-sixteenth of an inch from full in before the bolt releases.

Raise the rear sight all the way.  Gently push the aperture left and right.
If there's any visible movement, the rear sight parts fit is too loose and
decent accuracy will only be a dream.  Press down on the aperture; if
it goes down with only moderate pressure, the sight isn't tightened up
properly; this can be fixed by tightening up the screw in the windage

Inspect the gas cylinder rear ring that goes around the barrel.  If it 
touches the barrel, that means more accuracy problems.  Also check
the gas cylinder for tightness on the barrel.  There should not be any
looseness; if there is, you may be able to correct this by tightening the
gas cylinder lock screw.

Check both handguards for being tight.  The size of the groups the rifle
will shoot is directly porportional to how loose the handguards are; more
loose means bigger groups.  The operating rod should not touch any part
of the lower hand guard.  

Grasp the rifle just behind the stock ferrule, then press the barrel group
down onto the stock, finally release it.  The barrel group should spring
back up to where the lip on the stock ferrule stops against the lower band
preventing the barrel group from going up any further.

Unlock the trigger guard noting how much pressure is needed.  If the
trigger guard opens fairly easy, either the firing pin spring is way
too weak or the trigger guard's two locking lugs are worn too flat.
This means the receiver isn't clamped hard enough in the stock and
accuracy will suffer.  You should have to use quite a bit of force to
snap the guard back into place if the guard's locking lugs are in
good condition.  

Inspect the operating rod for proper fit.  It must not touch either side
of the stock ferrule when the bolt is closed.  The op-rod handle should
be forced up with the bolt closed, test it by pressing down on the handle
then releasing it; if the rod rotates back up fully, then it's probably
fit properly.  

Remove the operating rod and check its piston for rust or corrosion.
If the piston isn't clean and free of pits, especially around the
edge of the piston, that usually means very little or no corrosive
ammo has been fired in it.

With the operating rod out, check its sides for wear; especially at
the place where it fits between the stock ferrule sides.  If it shows
shiny wear points, it is bent somewhat and will probably bend more with
use.  There should be one or two V-shaped wear points at its bottom
where it enters the gas cylinder; if not, that's another indication
that it's bent at the front end.

Inspect the stock for splits.  With the stock upside down, try to 
spread it with your hands on either side of the big hole at its bottom.
Look for a split starting at the front of that hole going forward.  Also
check at the area behind where the trigger guard goes.  Check the top
of the stock under where the receiver's rear hump fits.  And finally check
on the inside where the recoil lugs fit on both sides.

Check the stock for oil or grease impregnating the wood around the 
receiver.  If you can, use a pocket knife blade to barely scrape away the
finish where the receiver mates with the wood; especially on the recoil
lug and top contact areas.  If it appears that oil/grease has penetrated
the wood, it probably has and that weakens the stock.


From: (Bart Bobbitt)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: M1 Garand in 7.62NATO/308WIN
Date: 10 Jan 1994 16:39:15 -0500 wrote:

: What is the opinion of converting one of the "Blue Star" M1 Garands
: over to 7.62NATO/308WIN?  

In the early 1960, the US Navy Rifle Team started converting 30 caliber
M1s to 7.62mm NATO with great success.  The only difference between the
two cartridges versions was the Springfield Armoury (MA) barrel's gas
port was a tad too small.  With the lower port pressure from the 7.62mm,
the port had to be drilled out several thousandths to ensure reliability.

Magazine area length for the 7.62mm versions caused no problem whatsoever.
As the cartridge is held by its extractor groove by the 8-round clip, no
forward-shifting happened at all.  In fact, this extra magazine length 
was a help for accuracy.  Handloads could have their bullets seated out
a few thousandths short of the lands; even with considerable throat
erosion.  Rounds with an overall length of 2.90-in, or more, was oft
times done when 190-grain bullets were used.  But continued use of these
converted M1s eventually required a plastic magazine filler; seems too
many folks tried to chamber a 30 caliber round in the shorter 7.62mm
chamber.  The filler prevented a clip full of .30-06 ammo from being
loaded.  With this exception, clipped 7.62mm ammo works just fine.  In
fact, 7.62mm rounds are actually better in M1 rifles.  When a clip full
of 'em is loaded, their larger diameter spreads the clip further apart
causing more pressure against the clip's sides.  When the clip bottoms
and trips the bolt release, the bolt goes forward, then hangs up on the
clip's top round.  This means you gotta give the operating rod handle a
thump with the heel of your hand to load the first round.  No more of
those `M1 thumbs' from loading a full clip; something that oft times
happens with 30 caliber M1 rifles. 

Seems the success the Navy had with these rifles in competition became 
the envy of the other services.  Coupled with the improved parts fitting
and assembly procedures, these 7.62mm NATO M1 rifles were for several
years the most accurate service rifle in the country.  The US Air Force
contracted the US Navy to build their match-grade M1 rifles; the US Marine
Corps Rifle team had the USN armorers come to Quantico MCB and show their
armorers how to modify their match conditioning procedures.  But the Army
Rifle team wanted no part of it; they were heavily involved in figuring
out how to match condition their new service rifle; the M14.


From: (Bart Bobbitt)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: M1 Garand hammer ques.
Date: 31 Jan 1994 09:57:55 -0500

That's normal operation.  What prevents the firing pin from being
driven forward to the primer when this happens is what's called
a safety bridge.  A web of metal at the back of the receiver that's
at the top, and just behind where the top of the clip would be, has
a rectangular angled notch in it.  Only when the bolt is fully
rotated closed does the firing pin's tang get to slide through this
safety bridge and go forward to strike the primer. 

Once in a while, the safety bridge or firing pin will be worn enough
to let the firing pin go forward and fire the chambered round before
the bolt is completely closed.  Firing pins are available and easily
replaced.  Receivers aren't cheap.


From: (Bart Bobbitt)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: M-1 Garand .308 conversion
Date: 13 Oct 1993 11:10:17 -0400

Jeff Boone ( wrote:

: 1. Is there anything else that needs to be done to an M-1 to make it
:    function reliably in .308?  Recoil spring?  Gas system?

The only change for a caliber 30 M1 rifle in converting to 7.62mm NATO is
to replace the barrel.  But the gas port needs to be a tad bigger in
diameter than that for a .30-06 barrel; how much bigger, I don't remember.
Other parts should be the same except for the ejector's spring.  Cutting
off a couple of turns on the ejector spring will cause fired cases to
be thrown straighter forward instead of back into your forhead or to the
right onto the shooter next to you.

: 2. Given that the M-1 has already had most of the standard accurizing
:    tricks done to it, including a (used) NM barrel, how much of a
:    difference in accuracy can I reasonably expect to see by having a
:    .308 heavy barrel from, say, Krieger or Hart installed?

Krieger or Obermeyer barrels are best.  Hart barrels are not a good thing
to put in service rifles.  Reasons being they tend to get larger diameter
bore and groove dimensions when profiled on the outside to fit the service
rifle.  This dimensional change reduces accuracy.  Cut-rifled barrels won't
have bore or groove dimensions change when profiled; Krieger and Obermeyer
barrels are cut rifled.

The accuracy you end up with depends on several things.  The chamber must
be reamed directly on the bore center.  Few chambering reamers do this right
just like few 'smiths do this right.  And the chamber reamer needs to have
its throat and leade cutting dimensions and angles suited for best accuracy
with the bullets you want to shoot.  

: 3. About what should I expect to pay for it, including installation?

A profiled Krieger or Obermeyer barrel costs about $340.  Installation
costs will be about $125 to $150 if done right.  The reciever may need to
be rebedded as the barrel's alignment to the reciever may put the barrel
band that fits on the stock ferrule out of alignment.  This is critical for
accuracy as the barrel must rest dead center above the stock ferrule with
no pressure on either side.  The barrel ring on the gas cylinder may need
to be relieved on the inside should the cylinder's alignment on the new
barrel position the ring against the barrel.  And the operating rod may 
need to be bent to fit the gas cylinder and stock ferrule with proper
clearance.  These extra costs could add up to over $100.


From: (Bart Bobbitt)
Subject: Re: SPARE PARTS LIST .45 ACP / M1 Garand
Organization: Hewlett-Packard Fort Collins Site

For the M1, these spares are typically good to have around:

  * Firing pin.

  * Extractor assembly, including extractor and spring.

  * Ejector assembly, including ejector and spring.

  * Trigger guard (their lugs wear flat and need to be replaced to
    keep the bedding pressure the same for consistant accuracy).


From: (Donald R. Newcomb)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: Garand Spare Parts
Date: 10 Oct 1994 16:10:28 -0400

In article <377kig$>,
Richard G Ried <> wrote:
#Can anyone recommend a selection of spare parts to keep my M1
#Garand in action over a long period of time?  

Unfortunately too many people take the "3 of everything" approach to
spare parts. This is based on the defensive notion that they won't 
be able to get replacement parts in the future if needed. It is a 
self-fulfilling prophesy as the pool of GI surplus spares is limited.
Having every Garand owner trying to obtain 3 of every part assures
short supply. 

If you look in TM 9-1005-222-35P, which is the Army's spare parts list
for the Garand, you will see very few parts which the 3rd echelon
holds more than one per 100 rifles per 15 day period. These are:

1. Follower rod assy.
2. Extractor
3. Both rear sight knobs
4. Gas cylinder screw
5. Hammer spring
6. Trigger and hammer pivot pins

This looks like a reasonable starting point, except the sight knobs
are probably only needed due to the abuse they receive in military
service. I would include also:

1. Firing pin
2. Ejector and spring
3. Extractor plunger & spring

I'm not sure that the expense (probably $100 now) of a gas cylinder
and op-rod makes them a prudent investment. 
Donald R. Newcomb              * University of Southern Mississippi      * "The God who gave us life gave us liberty     * at the same time."  T. Jefferson (1774)

From: (Bart Bobbit)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: Once more on M1's, M1A, calibers, etc
Date: 11 Nov 1994 21:04:54 -0500

F. Kevin Feeney ( wrote:

: WWII that is available in 30-06 only. I think this is the rifle you get
: when you do the DCM thing (yes?). 


: It likes to bite thumbs. 

Not true.  Some folks do not know how to properly close the bolt on
either a loaded or unloaded chamber.  Being inanimate, the M1 neither
likes or dislikes anything.

: I believe that the M1A shares a lot of it's basic design with the
: Garand, but has no interchangeable parts. 

The rear sight is interchangeable.

: Also, do 30-06 and .308 use the same bullet diameter across the
: range of weights? 

Yes.  They range from .3065 to .3095-inches.  Quite a spread, but
that's reality.  Different bullets from different makers vary.

: What twist rates do 30-06 and .308 use, same or different? 

Virtually all .30-06 M1 barrels are 1:10 twist.  Some custom barrels
have either a 1:11 or 1:12.  The M14 and M1A military style barrels
are 1:12 twist, but custom ones have been in 1:11 or 1:10.

: Preference for one over the other?

M1s in .30-06 will do best with a 1:12 twist.  .308s in M14 or M1A 
will do best with 1:12 for 150-grain or so bullets; 1:11 with 160 - 180
grain ones.

: How much does bullet weight and
: loading affect the reliablity of the cycling? 

Considerable.  Heavy bullets with slower buring powders will damage
the gas system or crack the receiver.

: I have seen the 'tanker' variant, which I gather was never issued. How
: good are they compared to a full sized? Worth the $500-700 I see them go
: for? How come they are in .308 instead of 30-06? 

Many Tanker M1s were in .30-06; all the originals were.

: What does it take to change a regular 30-06 garand into a .308
: flavor? 

Just a new barrel.  Everything else works just fine.

: Worth doing?)

You decide.

: What receivers are good to look for? I've seen Winchesters and lately
: some Springfield units. The guy in the store, who is a gunny, said the
: Winchesters were the best

When the military armorers were match conditioning M1s, the favorite 
was those from Springfield Armory in MA; they had the tightest tolerances.

:  What's the deal with the open bottom to the wood on the fore end? 

It has to be that way so you can remove the operating rod.

: Also, what is
: the deal on some operating rods needing to have a radius bend in them so
: they don't break. Should I worry about that?

All M1 operating rods must have two bends in them so they will fit in
the rifle and function correctly.


From: (Kirk Hays)
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Subject: Re: M14 cartridge nicks
Date: 11 Mar 1999 04:31:24 -0500

In article <7c0hgf$aun$>,
darrell chan <> wrote:
#I recently obtained an M14.  After shooting
#a series of rounds, I noticed some marks on
#the operating rod.  It appears the ejected rounds
#are tumbling on there way out and hitting the
#rod as it comes forward.  Are these nicks normal?

Normal?  Heck, they're *required*!

Seriously, the M14 op rod hump, and that of the M1 that preceded it,
were designed to slap the brass away from the action on closing.

John Garand meant for that to happen.

Kirk Hays
[I don't speak for Sequent.]

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