SHTF: M1 Garand vs M1 Carbine


October 1, 2006, 11:01 PM
Just what it says. i think we all know the pros and cons of this one.

Conditions: Long term, state of anarchy after society collapses from several natural disasters...Order may or may not be restored.

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October 1, 2006, 11:15 PM
I'd vote for the Garand here. As much as I love the Carbine, I don't have confidence in its stopping power.

Under the roughest survival conditions, I'd want to be as sure as I can of one-shot stops. There's no fire support group maneuvering with you, nor can you call in arty or air. There's YOU and YOU ALONE. :eek:

I also like the penetration of the Garand. Y'all know that ball ammo will blow through a 16" tree like nothing, right? And the range... you SEE 'em, you can TAG 'em.

The Garand is simply history's Great Battle Rifle, firing history's Great Rifle Cartridge. You will NEVER do better. :)

October 2, 2006, 03:10 AM
I prefer the Garand, more powerful.:what: Interesting though that the M1 carbine, when captured in sufficient amounts was used by German troops during WW2 and designated Selbstladekarabiner455(a) There are pictures of German troops using them, but I have never seen any pictures of them using the Garand. :scrutiny:

October 2, 2006, 03:42 AM
'06 ammo is a lot easier to come by than .30Carbine.

Dave Markowitz
October 2, 2006, 08:20 AM
Apples and oranges.

Personally, I prefer the light weight, handiness, and a detachable magazines of the Carbine. Loaded with softpoints it's no slouch.

WRT to .30-06 being more common -- run too much commercial .30-06 through a Garand and you can bend the op rod due to higher pressures than Ball and a different, incorrect pressure curve.

Baba Louie
October 2, 2006, 08:29 AM
Rural: Garand

Urban: Carbine

October 2, 2006, 09:17 AM
The two compliment each other well under varied conditions...the carbine can be handled by 10 year old kids/ a novice shooter wife/gf and they can be effective with it. The carbine even in WW2 was prefered over the M1 rifle
when it came to searching a house, was found to be perfectly adequite in
fighting in the forests of France/Belguim/Germany. Also even S.L.A. Marshall
in his Korean war combat arms effectivness report, while critical of the carbine(M2) in the subzero fighting on mountain tops where extended ranges
were the norm...he still concluded that if there was 4 soldiers in a jeep that got ambushed, they were better armed for fighting their way out when equipped with carbines, than 4 garands.
I have both and for different uses really like both...both have a place, both have things they do better than the other. It all depends on what terrain you expect to operate in, and what you will be shooting to eat, and 2 legged preditors you expect ect, if you can only pick one.
But no matter which one you pick in a total breakdown of society, its also just as important that you have friends with guns too

October 2, 2006, 09:36 AM
Of course you need at least one of each!
The Carbine for around the homestead and close(er) in personal defense and the Garand if you have to go (ahem) afield.

October 2, 2006, 09:38 AM
Conditions: Long term, state of anarchy after society collapses from several natural disasters...Order may or may not be restored.

I'd say Garand if "long term" means long enough that you're actually going to be scrounging for ammo in the rubble and order really is not going to be restored.

If order is going to be restored and "long term" means a month or two rather than years -- Carbine. Lethal enough at the range you have any legally defensible business trying to kill another human being at in self-defense.

October 2, 2006, 11:39 AM
If TEOTWAWKI, Garand is preferred for me. I wouldn't be unhappy with a carbine though. I think the Garand might be a better rifle if it came to hand-to-hand with bayonet. To me it is more versatle for fighting/hunting/etc.

October 2, 2006, 12:58 PM
As has already been said, one of each with plenty of ammo.

If it's really long term, unless you've laid in LOTS of reloading supplies, you'd better learn to use a bow and a sling-shot.:D

October 2, 2006, 09:11 PM
No question. . . M1 Garand.

"The greatest battle emplement ever devised."

Thin Black Line
October 3, 2006, 08:43 AM
Rural: Garand

Urban: Carbine


October 3, 2006, 03:00 PM
Unfortunately, neither.

The carbine:
Pros: Light, more manageable package, light recoil, higher capacity.
Cons: Expensive for USGI originals, no proven repros (Kahr hasn't been out long enough), expensive ammo, less than optimal terminal ballistics, it's not really a rifle.

The Garand:
Pros: Good terminal ballistics, more readily available ammo (but not cheap anymore), much better accuracy, much longer range.
Cons: 8 round capacity, en bloc clips eject themselves so they're easily lost and aren't as available as they used to be, no real scope mounting options to take advantage of the range, compared to more recent designs it's a beast.

I would consider a M14 variant instead of an M1, if only because surplus 7.62 is still a reality and surplus 30-06 isn't. See what a case of -06 costs versus a case of surplus 7.64 NATO. Also, there are scope mounting options that allow you to take better advantage of the long range capabilities. The capacity is better, but that is less of an issue than the availability of ammo. M14s/M1As aren't cheap, but neither are non-CMP Garands.

I would consider an AR or AK instead of the Carbine, because parts and ammo are more readily available and the terminal ballistics are better. The Carbine is an excellent replacement . . . for a pistol. An AK or 14.5 inch AR is the bottom of what I consider a rifle.

If Garands and Carbines still cost what they did not too many years ago, and ammo was still avialable, they would be better options. But the length of time since they have been in service means that the surplus parts and ammo aren't readily available anymore.

October 3, 2006, 03:24 PM
Soldiers don't have to explain to officals why they were busy shooting people at 300-400 yards, like civilians would. The M1 Carbine is perfectly able to take down at the range you could really justify in SHTF situration, especially with SP ammo. This gives you a smaller, handier package that works well for police type actions and civilians who aren't seeing full battle conditions and are still in use in a number of countries with this role. The paratrooper version in particular is rather handy and short and nice and light for moving around.

30-06 might be more common ammo but in a shtf don't expect to find any around as the gunstores and walmart etc are generally the first places to get robbed. Then too much modern commercial rounds can damage the Garand making it a big stick so its a matter of gathering as much ammo as you can beforehand, which evens out things if ordering over the internet and so on for M1 carbine ammo. Of course I can also find the stuff in Gander Mountain, Bass Pro and various shops around here. Its gotten more common.

Even McArthur saw the Garand was too long for urban combat and wanted a shorterned carbine version of it introduced for house clearing, but the war ended before it could be implemented.

Still its no Ar15 or other modern rifle or carbine.

October 3, 2006, 04:04 PM
Well, I can buy cases of 30.06 in bandoliers and en bloc clips. I have a box of aftermarket clips as well. Availability of clips is not a big deal. Also, clips would be more disposable and much easier to repair if problems come up down the road. I would have a few hundred simple en bloc clips where most M14 shooters might have 20 mags at most. I would prefer an M14 also I think, but I don't see en bloc clips as a great disadvantage beyond capacity.

Also, if we are going so far down the road to say that 2000 rounds of ammo isn't enough, then you might as well start considering muzzleloaders and flintlocks. More is better though.

M14's are better, I admit, but the title excluded them. There are better choices than either gun that have the same positives with fewer negatives. For example, and AR-15 or AK-74 would have all the positives of a carbine with less negatives for most shooters. There are number of 7.62 NATO rifles that are magazine fed and would be preferred.

The Deer Hunter
October 3, 2006, 04:10 PM
How much?

Are they both the same price?

Are they under $1000? If so get the carbine

October 3, 2006, 04:11 PM

October 3, 2006, 04:12 PM
To be honest, if you are looking at aftermarket rifles only, the newly made Garands are just as expensive as the new Carbines if not more.

Vern Humphrey
October 3, 2006, 04:35 PM
I had an M2 Carbine (selective fire version of the M1 Carbine) the day the S really HTF.

It got wrapped around a tree and I borrowed an M1 Garand from the ARVN battalion I advised and carried it for the rest of my tour.

October 4, 2006, 01:48 AM
Are great little guns, but they aren't rifles. M1 Garands are rifles. They have different applications. Either will do the other's job in a pinch, BUT not as well. Close combat, the carbine's length and firepower give it the edge, but this is balanced by the fact that it shoots a light round, close to .357mag pistol in power. The drawback of the Garand is its size, and only holding 8 rounds, balanced by the fact that the round is quite powerful.

Something to consider, I had a friend who was in Korea, as a telephone lineman, and during the summer he carried a carbine. During the winter, they took his carbine away from him and made him carry a Garand.

For myself, not being 20 something, and so not likely to do much house clearing, in a SHTF situation, I would tend to sit tight (after intial location change), and a rifle with real range and power would be more important than one that is short, low powered, with a little more firepower between reloads.

Guy B. Meredith
October 4, 2006, 07:37 AM
Garand. I want the Bad Guys to stay way off in the distance. The enbloc clips will fall into my living room--or whatever.

Cost? I have two very adequate Garands (one shoots 2 MOA before stock work and detailed cleanup, will test the other this weekend) for a little over $800.

960 rounds of ammo for a couple hundred dollars. Stock up now while the supply lasts.

October 4, 2006, 08:45 AM
Garand, definately. Probably in .308, if I had my choice, just because I have a small pile of .308 ammo.

I know of a custom house that's making a 50-state legal defensive rifle based on a shortened .308 Grand with a scout-scope mount. Good for places like, say, Chicago, where detachable mag semiautos are a no-no.

The old warhorse could still serve quite well today, I think. Especially in a survival/emergency type situation where protracted firefights probably aren't going to be common. (In any case, if you're by yourself, it doesn't matter if you have a SAW and they have KAR.98s. You're still probably going to lose.)

The aforementioned Garand Carbine ( will be my next rifle acquisition in the event of another ill-advised assault weapons ban. If that happens, and it's really bad, parts for my FAL carbine might be hard to comeby, as might magazines. (There have been AWB proposals that would outlaw the transfer of any >10 round magazine!). In that case, the Garand would probably be a choice weapon.

Not that I'd feel outgunned with it anyway. :cool:

Oh. It was mentioned that the .30 Carbine round does better with expanding ammunition. Undoubetedly, but .308/.30-06 probably does even better. :)

Regarding the Garand, one of John Farnam's "Quips":

15Aug06 At an Urban Rifle/Shotgun course in MI last weekend, a student brought a Garand and shot the entire Course with it. His build and height are above average, but even he admitted that, after carrying it (and forty rounds of ammunition) for two, long days, he can surely see the advantage of short, light, compact rifles, with large, detachable magazines. He lives in Chicago, where one may not a legally own any species of handgun, but may have a Garand and a pump shotgun. No other autoloading, military rifle is allowed (not even M1 Carbines), and autoloading shotguns are limited to four rounds. Even then, all firearms are registered with the City, so the mayor can, at any time, and on any flimsy pretext, kick in the doors of gunowners' homes and snatch them out of their hands, leaving them defenseless in the face of (private sector) criminals (the "Nagen Method"). If I lived in Chicago, I'm sure I'd own several Garands! This student is making due, as best he can, given his circumstances. That is what I admire. Instead of spending all his time cursing liberal, anti-gun politicians, he has found a way to arm himself formidably, working around restrictive rules. After an arduous and exhausting, two-day workout, few, with any kind of rifle, would be a match for him! /John

October 4, 2006, 08:48 AM
Carbine. With JHP/SP rounds, very effective out to 200 yd. Actually, energy is not much less than 7.62x39. Also, it's what I have now.

If things really got that bad, I don't see myself looking for a fight. The carbine was designed as a defensive arm, and it fills the role admirably.
If you have to bail, the light weight would be a real asset. For long range use, I'd scrounge a bolt rifle.

October 4, 2006, 09:18 PM
I happen to already have a carbine, and it's perfect for my wife. As for SHTF, it depends a little on whish nationality the S is. I'm going to steer towards a rifle that shoots the ammo of my enemy. In any case, a Garand would only be useful in .308. My SKS and ARs are much more likely to be using commonly used ammo.

bad LT
October 4, 2006, 11:03 PM

You live in California, therefore are restricted to 10 round magazines maximum. No GI 15 or 30 magizines for you as long as you live there.

With the garand, you can have a system that is all USGI and thus has passed government inspection at one point in its lifespan. If I were in your shoes, I would look into getting a USGI garand first, and possibly a shorter version later.

October 5, 2006, 06:24 PM
Here is your chance. Get one of each:D

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