For pure shooting fun, what would you choose...


November 14, 2004, 09:41 PM
I'm in the market for my first centerfire rifle. Purpose would be target shooting, plinking, maybe some casual club matches. I don't reload. The weight of the rifle is not so important. I live in the country, but the only varmits I've had to shoot have met their fate at the wrong end of a 10/22, so I don't expect to have to have a certain rifle just for that purpose.

I'm looking for alot of "fun factor." I know that's an intangible and means something different to different folks. But, I have gotten my choices down to three rifles:

Marlin 1894C. I've got an old S&W mod 586 that would go great with this rifle. I don't have a levergun and this one has caught my eye.

M1 Garand from the CMP. A piece of history that would surely be a sentimental favorite.

Something on the AR platform. Handy, customizeable to the extreme. Folks have told me this is lots of fun to shoot.

So, that's my list of choices and I haven't a clue how to make the choice. I have yet to shoot any of these. Looking for your comments. Oh yeah. One last thing. I can buy only ONE! :uhoh:

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November 14, 2004, 09:46 PM
For plain versatality go with the AR family.
One receiver and several uppers will make the gun a multi caliber, muti use all around blaster.

For pure joy an M1 Garand is hard to beat.

Lever actions are passe' unless you have a hankering to relive the glory days of the cowboys.

November 14, 2004, 09:46 PM
Lord what a decision.

Levers are a blast no doubt.

The M1 Garand, well it is just about my favorite rifle.

But for pure shooting fun I would say AR15 and this is why.

1)Cheap ammo.
2)Very accurate.
3).22LR conversions (Trust me on this one you will love a .22LR upper)
4)The Lego of the gun worlds, sights, uppers, handguards, lights etc.
5)Different uppers that totally change the personality of the gun.
6)Basically can be made into anything from an uber tactical entry gun with all the gizmos, to a historical recreation of the M16A1, to a super accurate match rifle etc.

Headless Thompson Gunner
November 14, 2004, 09:54 PM
M1 Garand.

Nothing beats the ping!

November 14, 2004, 10:12 PM
What cslinger says...

The Grand Inquisitor
November 14, 2004, 10:32 PM
Two choices really - I don't think the lever gun will be all that much fun, at least compared to the semi's.

Garand - I bought a Garand from the CMP mainly to complement my other C&R WWII stuff (and because I was at the North store with a friend) and it somehow managed to become one of my favorite rifles. The Garand is a BLAST to shoot and further more it can outshoot many of its progeny. I bought my Garand on a whim and now I couldn't be happier that I did and I would never consider a firearms collection complete without a Garand.

AR - I'm sure lots of people will tell you to get an AR15, and for many good reasons...blah blah blah. About two weeks ago I was at my local gun shop and an Armalite AR180B caught my eye and I bought it and I have been very, very impressed. There are not as many toys and add ons for the 180B (for that matter - NO firearm has as many do-dad's as the AR platform - most cars don't even have as many extra parts as AR's do)but the ones you can get are great and in my personal opinion they modifications they made to the design puts the AR180B above the regular AR 15.

November 14, 2004, 11:07 PM
Get the Marlin in 357, and use the rest of the money you saved by NOT getting an AR to get what you really want - a SKS.

November 15, 2004, 12:48 AM
To me, at least, this would be a total no-brainer!

There is nothing in the world that gives you the almost perfect combination of light weight, low recoil, excellent accuracy, excellent ergonomics, ease of maintenance, durability, and a plethora of accesories as the AR platform.

Add to that the almost universal availability of ammo, both commercial and MilSurp, the very low cost of ammo, and if you handload, the price and availability of components.

And just for good measure, they hold their value quite well.

November 15, 2004, 01:17 AM
You have come to the right place: I have all of them.
Actually I have one 1894C, three M1s and a number of ARs: I don't know exactly but it is over 10.
No question in my mind what I would buy: an AR15.
And do me one small favor ? When you get back on here and ask which AR15 you should buy, ask which one has the best quality: not which one is the cheapest ? Please ? I have never asked you for anything in my life. Just say, I am thinking about buying an AR15 platform rifle or carbine. I want to be really happy with my purchase. I want to look back in five years and say I made a good decision. I am not really interested in the cheapest possible AR. I am not interested in what AR you have or which one is your favoirte. I want the one that is the best. :D

November 15, 2004, 08:39 AM
Colt AR15 is probably the most fun, or an M1 Carbine. Both good plinkers. YMMV

November 15, 2004, 01:26 PM
I would go with the Marlin.
Lever guns are cool. :D

November 15, 2004, 01:33 PM
I'm not an AR fan so the other two got my attention and I don't have an answer for you. I have both... :D

Having a lever gun to go with the six shooter on my hip makes for a fun day in the desert and the Marlins are great.

That being said, a M1 Garand in every household is my campaign motto.

November 15, 2004, 01:51 PM
For a pure fun gun, I'd go with the AR15. .223 ammo is common and cheap. There is also a certain "cool factor" of having an "EBR" in your stable. This cool factor makes the AR a great rifle for taking a newbie out to the range with too. And since it's so easy to shoot, they will have fun with it and go a long way towards getting hooked on shooting themselves. That kind of makes the AR a "two-for-one" deal.

November 15, 2004, 02:28 PM
Just for fun? Here is the order for me if I did not own any of them. Although personally, I think you should plan on getting all three.

1. AR-15. For all the reasons already listed. Everyone should have one. I have one (2nd on order). Very fun. Very versatile.

2 and 3. Tie between the Garand and Marlin 1984 (357/38). I don't have a Garand but it is very high on the want list. How could you not want one?

I do have a Marlin. Don't overlook a lever for pure shooting fun. Yeah, it may be an old design but that does not take anything away from its effectiveness and versatility. They can be found new for under $300. You can go full power .357 loads or plink all day on cheap .38's. Try one out, the word "passé” will never enter your mind.

Now, for just fun shooting, a 10/22 will do just as well. I also suggest an SKS, inexpensive to buy and cheap to keep loaded.

Good luck and enjoy.

November 15, 2004, 02:58 PM
All the guns you mentioned are hella fun and good, multipurpose firearms. Since you included possible casual target shooting, that means a Garand or AR IMHO. :D

November 15, 2004, 06:21 PM
My two fun guns: the Ruger Mini-14 (cheap ammo and semi-auto) and a Marlin 1894 in .45LC (love those levers).

I have and love two M1 Garands. Fifty rounds and my shoulder is sore and 30-06 is not exactly cheap.

November 15, 2004, 07:35 PM
The Garand is next on my list, but I already have an SKS. Don;t know it that counts as AK platform or not.

November 15, 2004, 09:38 PM
Fifty rounds and my shoulder is sore...

But you know you love it. :D

November 15, 2004, 10:03 PM

November 15, 2004, 10:06 PM
You have definitely narrowed it down to a good "top 3" list. You won't regret any of those choices. I would have to agree with cslinger, however, and if I was going to pick one to start with it would be the AR from the "fun factor" standpoint. Next would be the Garand, then the lever.

You must eventually get all three, but that would be my order of purchase.... :D

Steve Smith
November 15, 2004, 11:38 PM

First Person Shooter
November 16, 2004, 12:12 AM
Not even a second thought....get the AR, get one from someone you can trust to be a good one. Very fun to shoot, very accurate, and 223 is EVERYWHERE. After that you can indulge in different uppers for various cailbers.

Bartholomew Roberts
November 16, 2004, 09:01 AM
I too own an M1 and an AR15... both are great fun. I don't own a lever gun; but if even casual target practice is on the menu, the AR and M1 should be far superior to most lever guns.

A CMP M1 has a sense of history and is just a plain fun shooter with excellent iron sights. I like them even better than the AR irons. The en-bloc clips are fun and practcal as well. On the other hand, it won't handle as much sustained fire as an AR and ammo is more expensive.

The AR is everything mentioned here - ergonomic, fun, modular. Ammo for it is affordable and it is built so that it can handle quite a few rounds in a shooting session with no problems (I've fired 800rds over a 6hr period).

I don't think you would be disappointed with any of the rifles you listed.

November 16, 2004, 09:52 AM
Marlin 1894C. With .38 specials there's no recoil, the ammunition is cheap, the rifle is lightweight, and it just looks cool.

November 16, 2004, 10:13 AM
I'd like to shoot my M17s with a 120rnd. drum, but we can't have those in Ohio w/o a class 3 ffl. Crap. :cuss: :banghead: Other than that, my Jld G3 and my Glock 20. I'd like to get a .22lr conversion for my G3. Btw, hi all, I'm a newbie. 1st post. :cool:

November 16, 2004, 10:35 AM
I encourage the M1. They are not manufacturing more of them (at least not good ones).

November 16, 2004, 10:36 AM
Based on what you say in the original post, I would go with the AR15. Go to a dealer tell him what you plan on doing and make sure he understands you are serious. You should have years of fun ahead of yourself.

November 18, 2004, 09:28 AM
Just my 2 cents...I love shootin my Olympic Arms M4, easy on the pocket and shoulder. But I must admit, given 30.06 was just as cheap as .223, I would shoot my 1944 Springfield M1 know you just tagged that target at 100 yards... :evil:

November 18, 2004, 10:10 AM
Having used an M16 plenty in the Army, I had no desire to buy an AR15. The Garands cost less, have an interesting history, aren't expensive to buy or work on, and are great fun to shoot. And they have Walnut stocks. A nice Garand never fails to attract a crowd at the range, of young and old. If you're of military age but not a veteran the AR is much more popular, while taste for Garands usually comes down the road.

AR ammo can be had more economically than milspec 30.06 but unfortunately we almost all wind up shooting less than we wanted. So it can take a long time to burn up the money you saved over an AR.

November 18, 2004, 09:41 PM
You folks have been great. I've hesitated posting my reply to all these posts for not wanting to disappoint anyone. But, hey, this is the High Road, so here goes.

I've got to face it. I want all three rifles. No way can I swing that right now. Fact is, even getting one will be a bit of a stretch. But, a guy needs goals and I've now got one.

Marlin 1894C. If I find a wild deal on a used one, it'll be the first I buy. As someone said, if you want to relive the glory days of the Old West... Well, I'm into riding horses in a big way. Not quite ready for CASS, but I do watch more than my share of westerns on the Western Channel. However, unless the unbelievable deal presents itself, this rifle won't be the first one I buy.

M1 Garand. I posted this same question with a poll attached at the AmBack Forum. As you might imagine, the M1 won the poll hands down. And, many of you here picked it as well. Got to be honest with you, I'm not sure I'd enjoy the pounding of that rifle for an extended period of time. But, once I have some experience with centerfires in general, this rifle will be on my must-have list. (On a side note, Rexrider's comments about the SKS in another thread have me considering that rifle. And, someone else mentioned the M1 Carbine. Hadn't thought of that before.)

AR. Can't afford it. Will shock the wife, I'm sure. Will cause me to go out and buy a safe first. But, can't escape the fun-factor! Y'all have convinced me I've got to give this platform a chance first. The political climate will never get better, and could get worse. The resale value should be fine if need be. Just holding one makes me want to have one. What else can I say? I found out tonight that one of my friends has had 3. He currently has a RRA that was built to his specs. He previously had a Bushy. I've been invited down (after deer season) to shoot his. It'll take some time to set back the cash anyway and research what I want, so I'm excited.

And, 444, you can bet I won't be asking for advice on where's the cheapest AR for sale! I don't have a large collection of firearms. But, what I have is quality and I won't be changing that tune just because it might take a bit longer to save up for my next purchase.

Thanks, again, to everyone who posted their thoughts. I've enjoyed reading them. After I do some research and thinking, I'll have questions for the group regarding ARs, I'm sure.

November 18, 2004, 10:00 PM
-Longer, more fulfilling trips to the range with 20-30 round magazines and no kick.
-Cheap ammo since you don't reload.
-More likely to piss off the anti's!

;) Good luck, I'm sure you'll be happy with whatever AR you choose.

November 18, 2004, 10:42 PM

The M1 Garand is a great choice, even though I'd pick an AR for my first choice. As a matter of fact, you can put an AR together for nearly what an M1 will cost you...

Regarding recoil: A M1903 Springfield beats the ever livin' beejesus out of me, but I can fire hundreds of rounds through the M1 Garand with no pain at all. If you have never fired one before, you will be amazed by the reduction in felt recoil that the gas action makes...

I have a couple of Win. M94 Trapper carbines, one in .357 and the other in .44 Mag, that are great fun to shoot (and I'm not even into CASS stuff), but I'd still pick the AR first.

That's my opinion. But then again, we all know that opinions are like you-know-whats...

November 18, 2004, 11:51 PM
CMP M1 Garand. Quality, history, accuracy, power--an American classic.

November 19, 2004, 02:11 AM
To me, at least, this would be a total no-brainer!

There is nothing in the world that gives you the almost perfect combination of light weight, low recoil, excellent accuracy, excellent ergonomics, ease of maintenance, durability, and a plethora of accesories as the AR platform.

And just for good measure, they hold their value quite well.

Light Weight--No lighter than a good bolt gun

Low Recoil--Yes, felt recoil is very low, even for a .223

Excellent accuracy--by semi-auto standards. But you'll be lucky to find a std barrel factory AR that delivers .6" or better 5-shot groups consistently. A Savage .223 will do that for half the price, and the brass will last longer.

Excellent ergonomics--Compared to many battle rifles yes. But for shooting with a scope the ergonomics are actually quite bad. You need tall rings, the stock doesn't have enough drop, and the stock is too short for precision prone shooting.

Maintenance--You've got to be kidding. The AR is one of the most maintenance intensive firearms ever invented. You really do need to do a complete field strip with detailed cleaning of very small components very regularly. Read a few posts and you'll see that the AR is a shoot for an hour, clean for an hour piece. The gas blows right back into the bolt where it fouls quickly and the carbon will harden up if you don't clean the bolt religiously. The AR is the only gun I know where a half-dozen special tools have been devised to get the bolt clean. And you need to keep spare parts with you--gas rings (I recommend the one-piece spiral rings), ejector, ejector spring.

Accessories--Yes there are a ton. Other than a trigger replacement and a freefloat handguard set-up, most of them are a waste of money. Put your money into a good scope and a Harris bipod, if you want to shoot small groups.

Value Retention--Yes, as long as you stick to name brands and don't tart it up with a lot of expensive and mostly useless M4 wannabe accessories.

- - -

For a first rifle I would recommend an accurate bolt action .22 with a stock with a wide flat forearm and an adjustable trigger. For a first centerfire rifle, I'd recommend a Savage 12BVSS in .223, or a Tikka T3. But frankly I'd get a cheap Rem 700 action, put a good custom barrel on it, bed it into a good stock and you'll be way ahead of the game. I would go .308 if you want to shoot deer, or 6BR if you want to shoot paper. The 6BR will have less than half the recoil of the .308 and should shoot in the 2s and 3s if it is built by a good smith.

AR is a good fightin' gun and a nice black fashion accessory. But it is a very maintenance-intensive gun that isn't particularly well-suited for scoped shooting, without expensive modifications.

November 19, 2004, 02:53 AM
Not to annoy, but what range will you typically be shooting at?
I had two Marlin 1894's, a new Cowboy Limited in .44 and an original in .38-40, and I sold off the new one (not because there was anything much wrong with it, aside from the Marlin lever dysfunction, where a surface on the lever wears a groove in the lifter) but I'd say... look around for some old ones if you can, there might be something that'd make you very happy. Neither is so much fun at 100 yards.
The Garand is a joy. Cases of .30-06 in garand clips are somehow abundant and reasonable lately, and I see Garand clips of match ammo fairly regularly. It's a huge piece of American history and our marksmanship tradition, not much you can't do with it. If you get one, get a good sling, a shooting jacket, and a mat, and see how it performs from prone, maybe compete with it. There's not much it can't do, and it's just cool knowing my grandfather was teaching recruits to shoot it back in the 40's, and now I'm trying to master it myself.
The AR15, well... there's a lot to know about them. For the unwary, it's a potentially endless $ minefield of accessories of questionable utility and tacticality. The AR15 is many things to many people, and the A2 Government Carbine fan is probably farther from the Delta HBAR shooter than a CETME fan from a FAL fan. AR world is it's own small, bizzare planetoid, with customs, politics, and bitter rivalries alien to the general enthusiast. On THR, no one will offer to take a pipe to your head to correct your misperceptions on the best rifling twist rate/bbl length for a given projectile, or questioning the utility of an ELCAN optic, but beware... Bewaaaaaaaaare! ;)

Black Snowman
November 19, 2004, 12:10 PM
Lever guns are fun to shoot plates with.

M1 is good for punching paper, has mild recoil and you can use 30.06 to take pretty much any game in North America that's name doesn't start with Polar.

AR, neat, but have a lot of hype. Also suffer from a similar problem that 1911 pattern guns do; Everyone makes them so the quality of examples can vary greatly.

November 19, 2004, 01:57 PM
Maintenance--You've got to be kidding. The AR is one of the most maintenance intensive firearms ever invented. You really do need to do a complete field strip with detailed cleaning of very small components very regularly. Read a few posts and you'll see that the AR is a shoot for an hour, clean for an hour piece. The gas blows right back into the bolt where it fouls quickly and the carbon will harden up if you don't clean the bolt religiously. The AR is the only gun I know where a half-dozen special tools have been devised to get the bolt clean. And you need to keep spare parts with you--gas rings (I recommend the one-piece spiral rings), ejector, ejector spring.

No disrespect intended, but do you have any actual expereince with and AR? I do not consider the cleaning of an AR any more intensive then any other semi-auto rifle. To say it takes an hour to clean after an hour of shooting is not even close to true.

It simply does not get THAT dirty. Yes, I do recommend cleaning the bolt and carrier after a day at the range but it is easy and quick to do. There can be carbon build up on the bolt but it is for the most part self limiting and will not have an impact on reliablity.

I am by no means an AR expert but have been shooting my Colt since '95. I have gone over a 1k rounds before cleaning without any issues. Even after shooting 300 to 500 rounds the rifle hardly looks dirty (using AE .233 and Maylasia 5.56).

You will enjoy an AR, no doubt about. Don't worry about cleaning issues. Maintain the rifle like you would any other and you will be fine.
Any questions you may have about ARs can be answered over at

There is a lot of info available and plenty of people to help you with questions (including cleaning and maintence).


captain obvious
November 19, 2004, 02:11 PM

No brainer - M1 Garand

November 19, 2004, 02:23 PM
Garand is one that I want but I already have the "funnest" gun around. Saiga-1 in 308

any of the chamberings are good and fun and an actual new manufactured AK style semiauto for under $250!!

November 19, 2004, 06:49 PM
I second Yo's comment on cleaning ARs. I first shot them in the service in 1966 when the ammo came in plain white boxes, intermittently afterwards, and put a lot of rounds through my personal CAR-15. One hour to clean sounds just about right to me. I did it enough times.

These days when I shoot a semiauto military rifle it is usually the Garand, with the M1A in second place. Cleaning the M1 requires a patch of solvent, 6-8 trips down the bore with a brass brush, chamber brush (M3A1 tool), about 3-4 patches to take out the debris and fouling, and an oiled patch. The gas cylinder gets a couple of drops of bore cleaner via the end of the op rod. Check the greased areas for adequate lube and put it in the rack. Total time about ten minutes if I'm slow.

My notes indicate that when I last had the gas cylinder off it had been otherwise untouched for three years (and probably 1000 rounds). Very little carbon and still going strong. Only reason I pulled it was to peen the splines a bit to retighten it slightly.

I very occasionally go after the copper fouling with Sweet's but that's pretty optional and infrequent.

Don't currently have a .223 (the wind blows a lot here, and ranges are extended) but if I did I think I would get an AR-180B for the simpler tappet action and ease of cleaning.

BTW the Garand is a pussycat to fire if you have a proper position and are slung up properly. Offhand it is a blast, and in sitting you just rock a little in recoil and come right back into lineup. Your grandmother could shoot the M1 (a little help holding up the 9 1/2 pound rifle would help, though...).

November 19, 2004, 07:26 PM
Ak's are great for all ages and sizes - plus the ammo is cheap. AR are cool too since they have such light recoil. .50cals are fun to shoot stuff (applicances, lawn mowers,ect.) :cool:

November 20, 2004, 12:40 AM
Yo No disrespect intended, but do you have any actual expereince with and AR? I do not consider the cleaning of an AR any more intensive then any other semi-auto rifle. To say it takes an hour to clean after an hour of shooting is not even close to true. It simply does not get THAT dirty. Yes, I do recommend cleaning the bolt and carrier after a day at the range but it is easy and quick to do. There can be carbon build up on the bolt but it is for the most part self limiting and will not have an impact on reliablity.

ARs? Yep, I have three lowers, four uppers, including a complete Colt orginal 7.62x39 AR. I've also "fixed" more than a few ARs belonging to fellow shooters. In each case the problem was inadequate cleaning, usually gunk in the recess where the little spring for the extractor goes. A tiny metal shaving in the ejector channel will also disable the gun. You really do need to soak and swab the bolt, get all the gunk out of the carrier, use pipe cleaners now and then on the carrier key, use a special swab to get the bbl extension lugs clean. And you need to check the buffer channel regularly if you're operating in a sandy environment. By contrast, cleaning a bolt action involves 5-20 minutes on the barrel (depending on how badly it fouls), one pass of an oversized bore mop in the chamber, and a CLP patch to wipe off the bolt face followed by re-application of grease. With my tight-chambered customs, I really only have to clean the barrel (no fouling gets on the bolt), and they clean up with 4-5 wet patches. Same with my 45-70 (smokeless)-- 4 to 5 patches down the bore, wrap a patch around my little finger to clean the chamber and then wipe down the face of the breach block. Takes about 10 minutes.

The AR is the most maintenance-intensive firearm I've ever encountered, including other direct gas impingement guns I've shot (MAS, Ljungmann, Hakim). I consider the AR an outstanding prototype that got rushed into production before they corrected critical flaws. It's fun for three gun matches and the like though, but then so's a lever gun, and if you're talking about an 1866 or 1873 shooting pistol cartridges, clean up takes about 15 minutes after a match.

November 20, 2004, 01:21 PM
As I said, no disrespect intended and I apologize for calling you out. There are plenty of people out there who will trash the whole AR platform but never owned their own rifle yet alone even shot one. Not that you were trashing it, but I did not want NoBite to get scared off by thinking the rifle was impossible to keep clean and keep in operation.

The details you pointed out for cleaning are correct. NoBite, take note on the areas Yo mentioned. In my opinion however, I still don't think it is too difficult to maintain. Clean it regularly and you are good to go.

After reading your reply, I did take a moment to think about cleaning the AR compared to other semi-autos that I have owned. Not much of a list, a SKS (first semi-auto) Mini 30, Marlin Camp 9, and a Colt Sporter in 7.62x39. So yeah, in retrospect, I guess the AR's did take the longest. All those mentioned were sold at one point due to financial hardship back in '93-94. For a long time the Match Target bought in ‘95 was the was the only rifle I did own so I guess I just got used to doing what was needed to be done without even thinking about it too much.

And yes, in comparison...the Marlin 1894 is a breeze to clean.

Yo did make another good point with in his reply concerning the AR.

Value Retention--Yes, as long as you stick to name brands and don't tart it up with a lot of expensive and mostly useless M4 wannabe accessories.

When you get an AR, keep it simple (KISS). Murphy loves accessories. This applies to any firearm. Learn the rifle first. Learn to shoot with the iron sites before going to optics. If you go with a red dot type optics that uses batteries make sure your setup can switch back to iron sites quickly. Don't ever put yourself in a situation where you are betting on batteries

Once you have the rifle you will start to get a feel for what kind of shooting you want to do. Add to the rifle once you know what you want to do with it. There are plenty of examples of pimped out ARs out there. Some are very nice setups, some make no sense at all.

Sorry for the hijack of your thread. Cleaning and maintenance was not necessarily what this thread was about, but hey, cleaning and maintenance is part of shooting.

November 20, 2004, 02:56 PM
If cost is an issue you may also want to look at an SKS. AIM surplis and SARCO have some unissued M59/66 SKS's that are beautiful.

I take my SKS to the range every trip - way too much fun plinking stuff with it. VERY accurate.

Ammo is cheap - 7.62x39 is about $80/1000 at the local gunshows.

Good luck!

November 20, 2004, 03:25 PM

Obviously, you're a bolt action guy. Which is fine, we all have different tastes. A group of .6 inch is not to be had in a caual "fun" gun. For a "fun" gun, groups of 2 inches are more than adequate.

I like the .22s as well, but I would suggest a good semi-auto like the 10-22 or the various offerings from Remington and Marlin over any bolt action. Especially now that hi-cap mags are starting to come back online.

As for a scoped AR being dificult to shoot, "you gotta be kidding!" I have a Trijicon compact ACOG on my Bushmaster Dissapator, and it comes to the shoulder and "points" more naturally than any of my dozen or so scoped bolt guns. Offhand or prone.

I'm also very "perfectionist' about cleaning my ARs. It usually takes me 20-25 minutes to thoroughly and properly clean an AR. About the same as a bolt gun.

November 20, 2004, 06:34 PM
I agree with those who don't think that cleaning their AR-15 is a long job. I, also, am pretty anal when it comes to cleaning my guns, and I find that the AR-15 is easier to clean than, for example, the Marlin M1894 ot the M94 Win. carbines. It doesn't take much longer either. And, on top of all that, you don't have to fiddle from the muzzle end...

November 20, 2004, 06:55 PM
I know it's not on your list but why not an AK? Cheaper than an AR and you customize as you go. So much you can do with them, fun to shoot, and ammo not bad to come by either.

R.H. Lee
November 20, 2004, 07:07 PM
Lever guns are the original "hillbilly assault weapon" and are lots of fun. I don't own an AR, but I understand they are finicky about ammo and can be jammomatics. OTOH, the SKS is inexpensive to buy and cheap to feed and boringly reliable. Plus, it shoots a bigger bullet than the AR. :)

Turkey Creek
November 20, 2004, 08:55 PM
Of all the toys in the safe, the one for me to take to the range just to have bunches of fun with, is my brass framed Henry 44/40 by Uberti- this thing just lets me take my mind back 150 years or so, is a joy to shoot, and is very accurate as well- nothing I have compares to cranking up the sight and shooting at metal gong targets at 200 and 300 yards- somewhat expensive yes, but I've saved thousands by not having to pay a shrink instead :D

November 20, 2004, 09:49 PM
I often read things on this board that I disagree with, but I try to keep my mouth shut (doesn't always work). Other times, I am so amazed by what I read that I can't help myself.
It is totally beyond the capacity of my brain to imagine what could possbily be difficult or time consuming about cleaning an AR15. I have cleaned dozens of different AR15s and M16s, hundreds if not thousands of times and I must be missing something. :confused: I guess maybe I am doing it wrong, However my method seems to work: I put between 5 and 10 thousand rounds downrange from AR15s every year and have never had the slightest problem. Maybe I need to find out about these special tools, so I can make a ten minute job into an hour or more too. At least twice I have gone to a schooting skul and fired in excess of 1800 rounds a week through my AR15s, spent no more than 15 minutes a day cleaning them and didn't have any idea I needed any special tools. Cleaning rod ? Solvent ? Toothbrush ? Papertowels ?

November 21, 2004, 04:46 PM
I have all three of the rifles you mention and love all of them. If I had to pick only one to have, though, it would have to be the AR. Cheap and plentiful ammo and a superb platform for optics----it's hard to go wrong with it.

November 21, 2004, 06:28 PM
I can't remember who suggested to do this, but I just visited the Tactical Forum and did a search for "AR Deficiencies." The resulting thread was 6 pages long and extraordinary. The main thread discussed reliability among the various makes and models, with Colt being the consummate choice. But, there's so much more to it than that. You really should go read this thread, if you haven't, if you are interested in the AR platform.

As a neophyte, I am not wanting to spend money foolishly and I am sure I don't have the expertise to discern what looks good from what is good. So, do I stick with Colt and be pretty much assured of a quality product?

- - - - -

For you folks that have M1's, if you procure one from the CMP do you need to send it to someone to get it tweaked before it's safe to shoot or are they ready to go after cleaning? The reason for asking this is that I visited the Fulton Armory site yesterday looking at some of their offerings. Looks like they have some beautiful rifles for sale that have been carefully rebuilt. This caused me to question the rifles available straight from the CMP. Advice appreciated!

Let me confess something that really affected my choice of first centerfire rifle. I assumed that the M1 would pound the heck out of my shoulder in short time. Thinking that would be the case, I could not see the fun in taking it to the range frequently and I want a shooter! Some of you folks are hinting that that might not be the case. Anything else you might have to say about the felt recoil of this rifle would be appreciated.

November 21, 2004, 06:39 PM
none of the guns I have puts a smile on my face quite like my Garand!!

Dave Markowitz
November 21, 2004, 07:27 PM
Any of the guns listed are a blast (sorry) to shoot. Points to consider:

1. The Garand is a very historic piece.
2. The AR-15 is quite versatile and accurate.
3. The Marlin (or any .357 Carbine) is very pleasant to shoot but can handle game up through and including deer. It can also share ammo with a like-calibered revolver, if you have one.

I don't think you can go wrong with any of these choices.

November 21, 2004, 08:05 PM
As far as AR15 brand - I wouldn't worry too much about whether it's a colt or not. Assuming you have a quality gun (which any Colt, Bushy, Armalite, Rock River is going to be) the real keys of AR reliability are:

Lube - if you don't lube the weapon, it's not going to function. It doesn't need to be perfectly clean, but if it's dry inside you are probably going to have trouble.

Ammo - Stick with milspec ammo. Some people have good luck with other types, some don't. If you stick with Federal XM-193 or Win Q3131A you know you are getting quality - if you get some other ammo that isn't loaded strong enough it's not going to fully cycle the weapon.

Mags - Stick with USGI aluminum mags and put the current green follower in them.

With my Bushmaster I have NEVER had a failure when using USGI mags and XM193 or Q3131A over a few thousand rounds and these were fired in snowing condition, raining conditions, rolling in the dirt at a carbine match etc. The only times I had problems were with non-USGI mags and ammo.

So getting back to brand, I'd get the one that has the features you are looking for (in terms of barrel, twist, chamber, reciever etc).

November 21, 2004, 09:45 PM
Basically, what KW says about ARs...

Personally, I would first pick a Doublestar or Rock River Arms rifle, followed closely by Bushmaster, with the rest further down the line. Actually, Colt would be pretty far down the line (for a number of reasons).

But that's just me. My experiences may be different from those of others, although probably not that different (for example, if you check out comments about this kind of thing on

Whatever you end up getting, have fun. And all three types of rifles you mention are fun...

November 22, 2004, 01:05 PM
I would pay close attention to what was said in that thread on tactical forums. I know at least one of those guys who posted on that thread personally and they arn't casual shooters. There is far more experience in that thread than everyone on here combined. Just a word to the wise.

History: The M1 rifle is certainly something of history, however to me, the M16/AR15 has more history behind it. First of all, it has been in service by our military for a longer period of time, and has been used by a number of other countries who actually used them extensively in combat. In addition they are used by many other agencies on a daily basis. However, since this history is on-going it probably doesn't seem as romantic as a rifle that left the service 50 years ago.
The CMP M1s are ready to go, right out of the box assuming you buy a service grade rifle. The rack grade rifles have more wear on the barrel throat and chamber, but certainly will provide you with many hours of shooting pleasure without any additional expense. The rifles from these third party companies bascially look better and they may have some accuracy work done to them such as new barrels, trigger jobs, or possibly bedding. The stocks are new, the metal has been refinished. The rifles from the CMP come just as they were issued to the troops. The stocks have dings in them, both from use and storage. The metal parts may have the finish wearing thin. Being military rifles, the parts may not match as to their manufacturer. But, again, they are rifles that were actually issued to troops and are in that condition. I have only heard of a few cases where the rifle didn't function mechanically and those problems were immediately corrected by the CMP. If you want a rifle to shoot, those are great. I have three of them.
I guess I am not the right guy to ask about recoil. I am not some kind of tough guy, but I never gave recoil a whole lot of thought other than the most extreme cases which are way beyond anything we are discussing here. The M1 rifle provides a mild push to your shoulder. Now if I walked up to you and took my hand and pushed your shoulder, do you think that is something worth getting excited over ? Is that something to spend a lot of bandwidth on the internet discussing ?
The M1 is a pretty heavy rifle. I really can't imagine that anyone would find the recoil of an M1 to be uncomfortable.
I shoot a couple matches a month that use vintage military rifles: one bolt action match and one semiauto match. In both matches we have women and children shooting major caliber rifles. We regularly have an 8 year old girl compete with a Yugo M48 rifle in 8mm Mauser. The woman that won 1st place in the women's division of last Saturday's match was shooting an M1 and she couldn't be much over 5 feet tall. None of them seem to mind it in the least. But, maybe they haven't been conditioned to believe that rifle recoil is something to be concerned about. The matches are usually 40 rounds but sometimes a little more.
One reason I hesitate to recommend the M1 rifle to casual shooters is that the M1 has no way to regulate gas flow to the operating rod. So, you need to shoot ammo that is similar to the military issue load. Shooting hotter loads or loads using heavier bullets sometimes result in a bent operating rod. In a nutshell, you may or may not be able to safely go down to Wal-Mart and buy a box of ammo to shoot in your M1. Yes, people do it. Yes, you very well might get away with it. Then again, you might not. Keep in mind this isn't a safety issue: you arn't going to get hurt doing this, but the rifle might. Likewise with handloading for the M1. It takes a little more care than handloading .30-06 for your bolt action hunting rifle. You need to size your cases correctly to avoid a slam fire since the M1 has a floating firing pin. Yes, people get away without doing this. Then again, you might not. This IS a safety issue and can result in serious personal injury. All that being said, if you shoot milsurp ammo, or ammo that is similar to milsurp ammo, you will be fine. I don't want to imply in any way that the M1 rifle is unsafe. It isn't. But, it is a little more involved than the common run of the mill rifle. All the stuff I have mentioned is very well known and documented.

November 22, 2004, 02:50 PM
While it is true that the M1 is sensitive to port pressure (for example, you can destroy your operating rod if a really slow powder is used), there are ways to avoid such problems. First, as 444 mentions, purchase ammo that is designed for the M1 gas system (for example, CMP supplied LC ball, or the new FNM M2 ball type load sold by Cole's for $219.99/1000 (new, NC, boxer)). Second, buy the McCann (or similar) gas plug system that allows you to use different size bleed holes in the gas plug. With it, you can shoot slower powders without danger to the rifle (assuming that breach pressure is safe, of course). Brownell's carries the McCann gas plugs, and they work pretty well.

Also, I agree with 444 about primer sensitivity. Although I have loaded and fired thousands of rounds of .30-06 in Garands over the past few decades, all of which were loaded with CCI200 or Win. LR primers, I don't recommend this practice and no longer use these primers in the Garand. CCI makes the #41 primer especially for .30-06 and .308 mil. spec. ammo (and, which is also especially important for the 7.5x54mm MAS in a Mle. 49/56) to reduce primer sensitivity and reduce the chance of slam-fires in semi rifles. (Or is it #34. I can never remember the number difference for LR and SR primers). Use this primer for M1 Garand loads.

November 24, 2004, 06:36 PM
Guys, thanks for the info on the M1. I appreciate your help and feedback. Now for an AR question.

A local shop that does a lot of police sales and handles various brands of ARs told me today of the difficulty in getting their orders filled from Colt and Rock River Arms. Supposedly, Colt is not selling any 16" rifles directly to non-LEO folks. They are selling to distributors only. This shop says because of tight supplies, they are also selling only to LEO, at least for the rifles coming straight from Colt. If they can procure rifles from another distributor, they will sell those to non-LEOs. Furthermore, they say the Rock River supply chain is backed up, too. It is apparently easier for this shop to get parts, uppers and lowers separately, than it is to get rifles in a box. So, they say my choices with their shop are wait three or more months for a NIB Rock River AR, take a chance that they will somehow come upon a Colt to sell me, or they will assemble a Rock River for me. If they do that, I will not get a warranty from Rock River, but this shop will offer me a similar warranty. They say they have 4 certified Colt armorers on staff. If I buy the Rock River in this manner, the price would be $750 for a flat top.

First, does this information pretty much match what you folks are hearing about AR availability from Colt and RRA? Supposing I bought an upper and lower assembled by this shop, is $750 close to a decent price? Is their offer of a shop warranty reasonable?

I feel like I am in shark-infested waters here! Guidance is requested. :uhoh:

OTOH, at another shop in town, where I have purchased other firearms in the past, the guys there stock Bushys. They sell flat tops at around $857, give or take a bit. I like these guys. They took a lot of time to actually strip down an AR so I could see how easy it came apart and the guy I talked with obviously likes the platform. No mention of difficulty in obtaining rifles. If based only on a "gut feel," I'd do business again with this shop as I have a level of trust with these folks. But, would I be missing a better deal?

November 24, 2004, 07:41 PM
My understanding on the Colt issue is that they are trying to keep their distributers from selling LEO marked rifles to civilians. That about all I know as far as supplies go.

$750 isn't too bad for a RRA with a warranty. You could buy a RRA lower, parts kit, stock, and assembled upper from distributers off for about $650, so you are paying a little extra for assembly and a warranty.

The advantage of the Bushy is that you get a chrome lined barrel (and it's made of a slightly higher grade of steel), that you don't get on most RRA models. Bushmaster is the largest seller among civilian ARs by a long shot, so it's not suprising that they are easier to get.

November 24, 2004, 10:31 PM
Get an AR. Don't own one myself but have shot one for firearms qualification. Fun to shoot, no recoil, and it looks like surplus ammo is available cheap.

Roger Williams
November 25, 2004, 02:54 AM
Out of the rifles you listed, I'd go with the AR...

However, If you are open to suggestions, I'd like to recommend a VEPR K in 7.62X39.

After I bought that one the AR don't get out much anymore! It's just TOOOOO fun, and stone cold reliable... It's a blast to line up several water filled milk jugs at 50 yards and go to town! BOOSH! BOOSH! BOOSH!!!!! :evil:

November 25, 2004, 10:28 AM
BDL 3-400 yds for groups. Quality over quantity. :neener:

November 25, 2004, 11:58 PM

November 26, 2004, 01:45 AM

Nice M1. Really Nice...

November 28, 2004, 08:41 AM

Beautiful piece. What mfg? Did you refinish it yourself? It makes me want to run up 23 to Toledo and buy one so I can get started on it.

November 28, 2004, 02:01 PM

Purchase a RRA complete lower and a RRA complete upper separately...

Or, purchase a complete lower from RRA and a complete upper from J&T Distributing...

Or, do the same thing with top quality items from other manufacturers (do a search of manufacturers on first)...

It is cheaper, and the only assembly required is pulling out the receiver pivot pin and pushing it back in (which it is designed to do) with the complete upper in place.

Voila, complete rifle...

If you are being charged to mount the complete upper on the complete lower, find another place to buy the stuff... If someone is assembling an upper or lower before mounting the upper on the lower, that's another story...

November 28, 2004, 02:41 PM
I still say that y'all are missing the boat by NOT including the SKS in the mix. A decent Norinco SKS will cost the princely sum of $200-$250. Add one TechSight ( @ $50, to give you an iron sight setup equal to that of the Garand or AR, and then spend the rest of your money on LOTS of practice ammo (at less than $.10/round). I can rapid-fire the SKS almost as fast as I can an AR15, and most any SKS will be about as accurate @ 100 yards as most any standard (non-accurized) AR with equal-quality ammo in both.

November 28, 2004, 07:09 PM

November 28, 2004, 08:37 PM
Lever gun! Can do anything with it and share ammo with handguns.

December 12, 2004, 07:43 AM
I'm beginning to make some progress toward evaluating the three rifles I mentioned to begin this thread. ;)

Later this morning, our club is hosting an M1 Garand shoot. They supply the M1's and ammo. For a nominal fee, we can participate in a 30-round competition. For me it'll be a great way to finally shoot one of these legends. In January, the club hosts a 50-round match which they say will qualify us to purchase through the CMP. BTW, these are the club rules, not the CMP's rules.

Also, a good friend is going to loan me his AR to, in his words, "fondle, shoot the crap out of it, and learn the manual of arms." I've purchased 500 rounds from Georgia Arms, so I'm ready for that experience to start!

I'll post my experiences here as I now can evaluate these rifles first hand!

December 12, 2004, 09:31 AM

If you decide on an AR, then which AR is another thread. Many problems would be prevented by (1) using quality ammo (the aforementioned XM193 and Q3131A are good choices) and (2) using good magazines. Note that (1) and (2) are well discussed in threads here and at the forums.

Regardless, get the CMP Garand. You can get the others later. CMP Garands are in limited supply. They are not about to run out, but they will someday. Do it now.


December 12, 2004, 11:15 AM
Maybe I can help...

I'm still a rifle newbie. With the exception of a .22 I had years ago, the first long gun I purchased was this past September. It was a Winchester 94 in .30-30. in October I got my first AR, my fist M1, and an M1 Carbine. I've been shooting the bejeezuz out of the last 3 since, and can offer some insights to a new purchaser.

AR: Fun as hell to shoot, and cheap, too. I threw an inexpensive red dot on mine after I got comffortable with the BUIS, and love it to death.

Lever: Fun, but gets tiresome over time. It shoots with a boring reliability, but there's really nothing that exciting about it.

M1 Carbine: A ball to shoot. There's really little more that one can say about it.

M1: People worry about recoil, and the first time I shot it, I *did* come home with a sore shoulder. Then I learned to really pull it in tight and shoot the thing. Since then, it's become my favoritist rifle, and the recoil is something I look forward to, as I know what it's going to do.

Some perceived drawbacks: With the AR, I would not call it a user-friendly shooter. It does not balance well compared to the other 3 rifles. I consider it a "form follows function" firearm, and I personally believe that it was built as a platform with little consideration to the shooter in mind. Though mine weighs half as much as my M1, I get tired shooting it faster.

M1: Can be somewhat expensive to shoot, though there is cheap MilSurp ammo out there. Some of it is corrrosive, and if your read the post about an AR taking a while to clean, they're nothing compared to what you need do after corrosive ammo. But, non-corrosive MilSurp can be found relatively cheaply also. Then there's the weight consideration. 9-1/2 to 11 pounds of rifle can become a bear to hold up at the range over time. Some find it troublesome, some don't. If it starts to get heavy for me over and extended range time, I just switch to the Carbine or AR for a while. That said, it was designed beautifully. It balances extremely well, and that adds considerably to holding it up to your shoulder to shoot for long periods.

Carbine: Fun, fun, fun. Mine's an October 1943 Underwood, and the Carbine owners have almost a religious fervor about them. I do, too, to an extent, inasmuch as I listed the age and make of mine, and bought it specifically because it was a WWII configuration, meaning there's no Korea-era additions to it. They are a gas to shoot, no recoil to speak of, are light, combat-accurate, and .30 Carbine ammo is cheap. However: the cartridge is not particularly powerful in relation to the others, and as such is not going to give you great, shooting match accuracy. It was designed from the ground up as a defensive weapon.

Lever: As I said, it's my least-shot rifle. I bought it because I feel that every long gun owner needs to have at least one lever, and mine is certainly reliable, relatively accurate, and fun to shoot, but it just doesn't blow my skirt up. Also, .30-30 is not the cheapest ammo around. It's far too popular, so the ammo makers don't need to offer great prices on it.

So. Which to buy? I would recomend the M1. AR's will be around a long time, and with the White House secured for the next 4 years, you can always get one, and "tacticalize" it up at your leisure, if that's your wont. You might grow tired of the lever, as did I, but that's a personal call only you can make. The Carbine is a gas, but not as a first rifle: it's a supplement to get afterwards. The M1 is a tangible piece of history, though its availability is slowly, inexorably waning as they're bought up. They are fun to shoot, there's no substitute to that "PING!" as the enbloc clip ejects, and its accuracy out to 400 yards is a given.

Besides, where else can you get "M1 Thumb?" :D


December 12, 2004, 05:44 PM
First of all, thanks to Immcrock and joegerardi for your comments. I appreciate you for adding your thoughts to what has proved to be an interesting discussion.

This morning I participated in a 30-round M1 Garand match. This was the first time I had even handled one. Lucky for me the RO was a great guy that spent a good amount of time showing me the manual of arms and helping me with everything. It's kind of daunting going to a match and not even realizing where the safety is located on the rifle! :o I did get repeated instruction on how to avoid M1 Thumb. And, at least for today, I avoided it.

First impression: this is a Man's Rifle! We started out shooting in the prone position. Five rounds to zero in. I got some good advice on using the sling. Got it good and tight. Real tight. Bring those elbows in. Farther! Get a good cheek weld. (I really need work on this!) After three shots, just rotate your head to the left a little and look into the spotting scope with your left eye. Uh, I've got to practice that a lot as well. I pretty much broke down my shooting position each time I moved to look into the scope. But, my greatest early discovery had to do with the recoil. This may sound odd, but it reminds me of the way a 1911 recoils into your hand. Sort of a good, solid push. Not uncomfortable at all. Especially if you have the sling really tight, your right leg drawn up enough to get your gut off the ground and your elbows in under the rifle. I liked the recoil, actually. Odd. I didn't expect that.

So, after ten rounds slow fire in the prone position, we moved to ten rounds rapid fire in the prone position, starting from standing. 70 seconds. I tried to tell my self to breathe and relax. Tough mission as it was prety darn exciting to hear all the rifles firing at once! :D That was a blast. Then, the final ten rounds were to be slow fire from the standing position. Oh boy! Felt like the end of the barrel was on a merry-go-round! Couldn't keep it steady. The RO told me to squeeze off the shot as the sight moved INTO the black. Don't try to shoot quickly as the sight LEAVES the black. I was trying for perfection, which meant I was holding the rifle for a long time. And, I thought I was in pretty good shape. Wow, that was tough. But, again, lots of fun.

My score was nothing to write home about. We scored the top 30 rounds of the 35 we shot. (30 plus the 5 zeroing rounds.) I hit the paper with 29.

Here's the target (100 yards.)

The neatest thing is, my scores will be reported to the CMP, which is one part of what I need if I ever want to buy an M1 from them.

The club's next M1 match is the second Sunday in January. I'll be there! In the meantime, more upper body exercises and more reading up on the M1.

For those of you recommending this rifle, I am beginning to see the appeal! :D

December 12, 2004, 06:11 PM
cslinger said it best!

The Ar platform is the way to go. It can be modified into what ever you want, and there is plenty of cheap ammo out there so you can enjoy hours of shooting fun

Lobotomy Boy
December 12, 2004, 06:36 PM
If you want a centerfire rifle, you're talking pure fun, and you're concerned with the price of ammo, it's hard to beat a 9mm carbine. I just blew off 300 rounds in my PC9 at a cost of about $35.00, including tax. It might not be the most practical gun, but it is a flat-out blast to shoot, and reliable as an anvil.

February 5, 2005, 06:35 AM
:D M1

Yesterday I sent my paperwork to the CMP to purchase a service grade SA M1. After lots of thought and after shooting an M1 and an AR, this is the best way for me to start my collection of centerfire rifles. It is such a kick to shoot as well as pretty much what I grew up thinking a rifle should be that I couldn't decide on anything else. My youth was spent watching WWII movies and such shows as Combat! . I'm going to feel good about this purchase.

And, I'm sure not knocking any of the other rifles under consideration that I or you mentioned in this thread. No reason why this purchase can't be the start of a collection !

February 5, 2005, 10:29 AM
As several of the other posters have said, any of the three will provide you with hours of "fun". Semi-autos, old or new, are in vogue right now and if you like to put lots of bullets downrange quickly, they are a blast (pun intended). :) Contrary to what some may say, lever-action rifles are far from outdated and offer not only fun but a connection to our firearms past. I'm too old to worry about the "cool factor" but I would agree that the AR-15 is probably the best of the three if cost of ammo is a factor. Otherwise, if I had to choose between an AR and a rifle in a real combat caliber :neener: , the M-1 or M1A would be the ticket. Heck, you can't go wrong with any of them and I'll make a prediction: you will own all three someday.

February 5, 2005, 08:45 PM
Congratulations, NoBite, you'll have a lot of fun with the M1...

February 6, 2005, 12:36 AM
I'm going to go ahead and recommend an SKS. The ammo is insanely cheap, the gun works well, and is very simple, not to mention inexpensive.

I have a Chinese, and though I haven't shot it yet, I love its ease of dissasembly. The rifle operates simply, is internally fairly simple, has a good deal of accessories available (watch the 922 law though) and is just an all around good gun for a great price, especially when you consider its durability.

Finally, I just love the cool factor. Others say its ugly, but I think its positively sexy. Buy one, you won't regret it.

edit: Maybe I should have read the last half of this page, huh? >_<

Well, enjoy your M1, my friend. If I had more money, I would too.

February 6, 2005, 11:38 AM
I'll say for a rifle either an SKS or a 10/22, for a pistol a Ruger MKII....

March 12, 2005, 07:37 PM
Well, as I wait for my M1 to arrive, I found myself in a neat situation. I had a little bonus money from work. So, I am now the owner of rifle #2 on my list: a Marlin 1894C.

To those of you that said this rifle would be fun, I can't agree more. :D I have a 25-yard range in my back yard. Today was unseasonably warm and I couldn't wait to try out the rifle. I stuck a small Shoot-N-C target on some cardboard and stepped off 25 paces. The first five shots grouped about 3 inches high. One click on the rear sight and everything else was great. This little rifle points so naturally. There is quite a bit of nostalgia in working the lever. I can't see a reason to shoot .38 specials. The .357 Mags are so much fun! :) Even from standing I was just tearing the center out of the target. Now, I know 25 yards is hardly any distance at all, but this was big time fun! I'm going to really like this rifle.

July 4, 2005, 08:40 AM
Having been advised by the CMP that USGI SA SG's are out of stock and no supply is in sight and offered a chance to convert my order to a Greek, I refused to do so. Having quite a few interesting rifles and handguns in my safe to shoot, I was in no hurry and really wanted what I originally ordered.

Two Thursdays ago I was delighted to find an email from the CMP informing me my order had shipped! In fact, upon running the tracking number, I found that within the past 20 minutes the rifle had been delivered to the local FedEx depot! Lunch break couldn't come too soon!

The rifle is circa 1943, SA SG. The stock is H&R, post WWII. It has been rebarreled and not shot much at all. Most other parts are Springfield and it has lots of character. I have some cleaning equipment on order from Fulton Armory and will give it a good cleaning and grease job before serious shooting, but did put 8 rounds down range to be sure all is in working order. It is.

Since I started this thread I have been able to shoot all 3 rifles on my short list of must-haves. And, I now own two of the three. I am in no hurry to acquire the third. Learning to shoot the M1 is going to be a happy pursuit. I am generally all thumbs at the work bench, but am determined to understand this rifle fully. I have Duff's manual and the excellent handbook that was shipped with the rifle and a good friend who knows the M1 inside and out. So, I'll get there. This is everything I hoped it would be and more. :)

July 4, 2005, 12:02 PM
get an AR, you can always "play" army man! lol
Really though, there a ton of fun to shoot, I shot ma freinds about 8 hours ago and im already looking into getting one of my own. :D

Mr. Loud Guns
July 4, 2005, 12:45 PM
Either my ruger 10/22 with 50 rd magazine or my bushmaster carbine ar-15 with telestock

July 4, 2005, 12:56 PM
M1 .30 Carbine
Mini 14/Mini 30
357 Lever gun

Harry Paget Flashman
July 4, 2005, 01:58 PM
An SKS or AK for pure shooting fun. They just keep shooting all day long and using the Czech surplus from for $139 for 1560 rds you can't shoot much cheaper. Target shooting and plinking are fun but quickly emptying a 30 rd magazine is pure joy. I get more bang for my bucks out of my WASR-10.

July 4, 2005, 09:46 PM
M1 Garand

July 5, 2005, 10:29 AM
SKS! I've had mine for less then a week and I'm already in love. It's the most legal fun I've ever had with my clothes on.

Essex County
July 5, 2005, 02:12 PM
Congratulations on your choice! I haven't owened an M1 since the '70's and I'd have selected the AR but you're good to go,,,,Good Shooting.............Essex County

Too Many Choices!?
July 5, 2005, 02:23 PM
I would say the AR-15 with a red-dot is the most fun to shoot.

July 5, 2005, 03:40 PM
Guys, I was actually trying to give this thread some closure, but your enthusiasm for what you like to shoot is contagious! :D

Watching Saving Private Ryan (again) the other day while holding my M1 was a neat experience. Going to my little range in the back yard and centering several shots offhand with the 1894C is inspiring. For a guy with old/abused eyes, that rifle shoots easily. I am real happy with these two rifles.

I did get a chance to extensively shoot a buddies AR. Some day I may own one. For now, and with the prices of good AR's skyrocketing, I am quite pleased with my M1 and Marlin lever rifle. They meet the criteria of being lots of fun to shoot! ;)

July 5, 2005, 08:55 PM
Pure Shooting FUN?
No other gun would even come close to the fun factor of low recoil, high capacity, spacegun like the P90

Thus I choose the PS-90

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