M1 Range Report


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Jenrick
December 1, 2006, 11:50 PM
Well for those of you that saw my previous what to buy thread, that has been answered. I picked her up at the shop this afternoon, grabbed a couple of spare clips (feels weird to type that word when discussing firearms), 40 rounds of surplus non corrosive ammo and off to the range. The shop had cleaned and lubed her up, so she was ready for shooting right away.

I've shoot quiet a bit of .223, and a bit of shotgun. I'd never fired a large caliber rifle before. I was a little hesitant about what the recoil on a 30-06 was going to feel like. I had also read quiet a few horror stories and the like about Garand thumb. I was quiet careful seating the first clip in the action, opting to go left hand just to make sure.

I ran the target out to 50 yards (indoor range), bottomed elevation adjustment out, and brought it up about 10 clicks, amount recomended to me by the Garand collector hanging out at the shop. I settled down behind the rifle on the rest, took a deep breath, and figured it couldn't be any worse then a 12ga that wasn't pulled tight.

My finding is that a properly mounted M1 really doesn't kick to bad. Sure it's loud, and you'll get hit in the head with the empty case bouncing off the divider, but it's not too bad of a kick. Two more rounds two form a group and ran the target back in.

High and left, some more knob turning, 3 more rounds. Even and left. Two more rounds. After I fired the eight round I notice a flicker in my field of view followed by that famous PING. Certianly makes you feel at least a little connected to history.

Anyway after shooting about 30 rounds I had a blast. Only a few problems popped up:

1) Partially full clips trying to eject on their own. From reading on here looks like I need to replace the clip latch spring. Had this happen with 2 clips, the other 2 were fine.

2) Looks I've got my rear sight all the way over and it's still hitting left about 6" at 100yds. Not quiet sure what to do about that at the moment.

3) A 30-06 round down your collar has more brass, thus leaves a bigger burn then a 5.56 round.

Took her home and field stripped and cleaned her. Didn't have time to do a full take down, will do that tommorow most likely.

So some questions:

Any other options then replacing the clip latch spring to prevent partials from trying to eject? Mainly asking since the 4 clips appear dimensionally identical, so not sure why it would do it with just 2.

Ideas on the rear sight?

What exactly needs to be done at the field strip level other then just cleaning the bore, and wiping things down? Since she has a VAR barrel, is there anything specific I need to be aware of?

While I'm waiting on my CMP details to go through, are there ANY commerical loadings that are safe? I've heard that AE 150gr FMJ is okay. I'm looking for basic range ammo, not match stuff at the moment.

Thanks for any info,

-Jenrick

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Beetle Bailey
December 2, 2006, 02:41 AM
Congrats on the new-to-you rifle.

As far as the clip latch spring, the same thing happened to my 1st Garand. It would only do it some of the time and a helpful friend replaced the worn old spring with a new one and the problem went away. I doubt it's the clips, and besides, the new spring isn't that expensive or difficult to replace, so think of it as preventative maintenance.

Dr. Dickie
December 2, 2006, 04:56 AM
For your "left" sighting problem, don't forget that the front sight can be moved left and right.
Both of the complete Garands I got from CMP came with the front sight all the way to the left (so they shot right). I moved it back to the center, and that is where they shoot now.

Dave P
December 2, 2006, 08:53 AM
"3) A 30-06 round down your collar has more brass, thus leaves a bigger burn then a 5.56 round."

Only girlie-men complain about brass burns - stand up and take it! :) Get yerself a big ole bandanna (not a scarf!) and wrap it around yer collar/neck.

BoySetsTheFire
December 2, 2006, 08:57 AM
Use a 3/16" allen wrench to move the front sight. I had to move mine as well, came in shooting to the left. Look at your rear sight. Each marking is divided into four clicks. Each click is one inch at 100 yards. So you will not have to move that front sight too much. Just nudge it 1/32 of an inch four every four inches of adjustment at 100 yards.

mkh100
December 2, 2006, 09:00 AM
If your shooting "left" you need to move the rear sight to the right. The Garand is 1 MOA per click so in your case move 6 clicks right.

Don't know about the clips.

Congrats on the new rifle.....I have a longing for a Garand myself right now !

Good Luck !

Mike

MechAg94
December 2, 2006, 09:13 AM
I would also recommend a new Op Rod spring as well. The new stainless springs work well. All three I have had intermittent problems with short cycling and not picking up rounds. I haven't had any problemns since I put in a new recoil spring.

I am planning on getting some of the other springs from Sarco. I haven't had problems with the other springs yet.

Jenrick
December 2, 2006, 01:28 PM
Thanks for the info everyone, this afternoon should see the start of a tear down. Thanks for the heads up on the front sight, that should take care of it.

A few questions: How exactly do I replace the clip ejector spring? Looking on line it looks like I need to strip down the trigger group to get at it. Is that the correct spring?

Anyone here use the adjustable gas plugs? Being able to shoot most commercial ammo would be nice. Then again I should just break down and reload shouldn't I?

Everyone says grease, not oil. No problem, where do I put it however? Haven't seen anywhere on line that actually says where to grease. I've always been a member of the less is more lubrication crowd, so I don't want to just slather away.

Is dry firing a problem? Probably going to get snap caps anyway, figure it never hurts to ask.

Thanks for all the help.

Andras
December 2, 2006, 05:49 PM
The clip latch is held in with a pin running lengthwise along the reciever. Simply knock the pin out from rear to front and you can replace the spring.

As far as commercial ammo goes, I've used Silver Bear 145gr .30-06 FMJ so far without problems.

Mr White
December 2, 2006, 10:21 PM
Dry firing isn't a problem with a Garand.

As for grease, ube the bolt lugs and the groove in the receiver that the op rod rides in. Lube the op rod where the bolt rides. Lube the grooves that the follower rides on. Put a little dab on the hammer where the bolt rides across it when the action is cycled. And anywhere else that yo see metal to metal wear.

Blackfork
December 2, 2006, 10:34 PM
Join the TSRA and watch for the Texas Garand Championship at Temple next fall, or shoot any one of a number of Highpower Rifle matches around the state. Big fun. Sounds like you are getting excellent advice. (grease) There are some Garand threads in the forum here if you do a search. Don't forget to peen the splines and re-seat the gas system if its loose. And I would have someone stone the trigger and clean it up. Most old highpower shooters in the Austin area will know what I am talking about. They shoot at the Temple Gun Club every Sunday, and at Manor outside Austin once a month.

Congrats and happy garanding! Those are real rifles.

I've shot two does with mine, now switching to the NEXT vintage military rifle in line to shoot one in the morning.

mustanger98
December 2, 2006, 11:19 PM
Anyway after shooting about 30 rounds I had a blast. Only a few problems popped up:

1) Partially full clips trying to eject on their own. From reading on here looks like I need to replace the clip latch spring. Had this happen with 2 clips, the other 2 were fine.

2) Looks I've got my rear sight all the way over and it's still hitting left about 6" at 100yds. Not quiet sure what to do about that at the moment.

Jenrick, My Garand gave me a bit of trouble about ejecting after 3-4rds of a clip. This cleared up when I did two things (changing the clip latch and/or its spring was not one of them)... First thing I did while I had it detail stripped was to change out the op rod spring for a new one from Fulton Armory. The op rod spring not only acts as the recoil spring that cycles the bolt, but also is the magazine follower spring. This did have an effect on the clip staying put and ejecting when proper. The second thing I learned to watch out for at the same time, which also accounted for short cycling (not your problem at the moment, but could come up) is to be sure the gas nut is tight. If you don't have a M3A1 combo tool for the M1 Garand, get one (Fulton Armory has those). I always check tightness of the gas nut before I shoot my Garand because I've known it to work loose. Reason I listed all that is it all seemed to be interrelated in my early experience with the M1 rifle.

Now, your second problem... if your rifle's rear sight is all the way to the right and the groups are still forming 6" left, you need to center the rear sight's windage and "index" the front sight. You'll need an Allen wrench (aka a "hex key") to loosen the front sight and slide it left until your groups center. It'll help if you have a collumater (optical boresighter). As I said, center the rear sight's windage, then loosen the hex screw in the front sight and slide it left until the sights line up on the boresighter's center line. Tighten the hex screw and shoot a group and see where it goes. It should be easy to fine tune from there.

I hope this helps. BTW, I haven't yet read the rest of the thread, but this IS my experience.

GarandOwner
December 3, 2006, 02:34 AM
Welcome to the club of Garand Ownership. As to the ammo, American Eagle or Remington UMC are the only commercial brands I trust. PMC was great, but I hear they recently went out of busniess. Go to J&G sales online if you dont mind buying bulk offline, they have some Lake City ammo for sale at a decent price. $100ish for 500 rounds I think is what they have right now. Lake City is what was made for the Garand. My M1 loves it, and it gets just as good of groups as the commercial stuff. Plus you dont have to worry about it busting your operating rod.

Trebor
December 3, 2006, 02:47 AM
You can order the "Read This First" M-1 Garand owners manual from the CMP even if you didn't buy your rifle from them. It's about $3.00 or so I think. It's well worth the money and will answer your questions about take down, cleaning, and shooting your rifle.

www.odcmp.com

Jenrick
December 3, 2006, 05:34 AM
Well after doing some more reading and only getting a partial strip done tonight (forgot I had a shift holiday party), I've got a frankengarand (that's fun to type).

It's a CAI, w/ a VAR barrel, and a SA trigger group. It does however shoot AND function well. I really can't complain. I'll probably order a USGI reciever from CMP when I order ammo, just to have one less thing to worry about. Then again with my luck it'll probably stop working so well :rolleyes:

I really didn't know to much about Garands before I bought this one. Now I know better. Such is life. My only major issue is getting it shooting POA/POI for my zero. Other then that I have no complaints.

Thanks for all the good info and keep it coming please,

-Jenrick

mustanger98
December 3, 2006, 03:13 PM
Well after doing some more reading and only getting a partial strip done tonight (forgot I had a shift holiday party), I've got a frankengarand (that's fun to type).

Hey Jenrick, I wouldn't feel too bad about the frankengarand thing. Most, even from U.S. Gov't arsenals, are mixmasters. My SA Dane Service Grade I bought from CMP... it's a mix... Winchester bolt and a good many Italian parts. No problem there.

It's a CAI, w/ a VAR barrel, and a SA trigger group. It does however shoot AND function well. I really can't complain. I'll probably order a USGI reciever from CMP when I order ammo, just to have one less thing to worry about. Then again with my luck it'll probably stop working so well

My understanding is a CAI receiver can either function real good or real bad and the bad reputation of course comes from so many of the latter. If this receiver is a good one, you got real lucky. However, I'd recommend you go ahead and get that USGI receiver from CMP while you can. Like you said, one less thing to worry about if you change it all over. You've already got a complete parts kit on that CAI receiver. Nothing to lose. All you have to do is get it all headspaced and timed right and you just need headspace or field guages and a timing guage (works in place of a loaded clip) and, if you don't already have 'em, a barrel vise and action wrench. I'm aquainted with a gentleman on another board who builds his own Garands from parts.

I really didn't know to much about Garands before I bought this one. Now I know better. Such is life. My only major issue is getting it shooting POA/POI for my zero. Other then that I have no complaints.

I didn't either as far as hands on before I bought mine. I did have the benefit of hanging around on a board where a good many Garand guys posted tech info.

Jenrick
December 6, 2006, 02:03 PM
So after some disassembling (and almost eating the oprod spring) I've got:

a PB bolt and op rod
a VAR barrel
a SA trigger group
a CAI reciever
and a rather beat down stock with a "P" in a circle pressed into it (anyone able to tell me what that signifies?)

So other then the reciever good parts.

The clip latch and spring seem in good shape. The oprod spring seems pretty good too (it launched itself out my garage and into my yard, so I'd say that's pretty springy). Gas plug seemed to be tight as well. Any other ideas on what could be causing the partial clips to try and eject?

Hand't taken it back to the range to test fire since take down. Who knows maybe everything will work great now. Then again if that's the only problem I have with a CAI reciever I'll count myself lucky :)

So general plan is going to be: New USGI reciever and a new stock. Unless there's a good bit of historical value the current stock is going to be stripped, and I'll see how well it'll refinish.

-Jenrick

jem375
December 6, 2006, 02:31 PM
I had the same problem with my garand and yes, it was the clip latch spring that caused the problem....

Dienekes
December 6, 2006, 09:44 PM
Op rod spring should be 19 1/2" long. Good idea to replace it and repeat each 1000 rounds.

There is a dry fire device carried by Fulton and others--inserts into the chamber so the bolt only has to be moved minutely to recock. Less work for you and easier on the firing pin as it is struck gently. I like mine.

Lots of good M1 info over at Culver Shooting Pages (CSP), www.jouster.com

If you can find a copy of Hatcher's "Book of the Garand" it is a great reference. While dated, I still refer to mine.

CMP Garands are a work in progress and a true education. Just had my regular shooter out today and was dinging 12" diameter rocks at 300 yards prone with a side wind.

Somebody needs to make up a sound chip device that plays the theme from "Band of Brothers" when you insert a clip.

DouglasW
December 7, 2006, 12:00 AM
Congratulations on the new rifle, Jenrick.I ran the target out to 50 yards (indoor range)

Wow, 30-06 at an inside range? None of the ranges around here allow centerfire rifle calibers (or shotguns)...

I'd never fired a large caliber rifle before. I was a little hesitant about what the recoil on a 30-06 was going to feel like

I'm in the same boat. I picked up my first rifle, a K-31 (http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/edu26.htm), a few weeks ago. Recoil was much less than I expected -- though perhaps the perma-grin on my face muffled it somewhat :D . Anyway, a CMP Garand is next on my wish-list...once the milsurp budget is replenished.

Happy shooting.

Khornet
December 7, 2006, 02:40 PM
it's hard to resist completely tearing down your new M1, but I strongly advise against taking the gas cylinder off, especially if it's shooting good groups now. It's almost never necessary anyway, and if you loosen the fit on those splines you will damage your accuracy.

AFAIK, "premature eject-ulation" is almost always a matter of the clip latch spring OR the bullet guide being worn. Both easy fixes, and I'd keep spares of those, as well as follower arm and oprod spring on hand.

I have a variable gas cylinder plug (actually one plug with several vents of different sizes which can be threaded in) and it works. Not expensive.

What a great rifle. Bet you a jelly doughnut that you'll be handloading for accuracy before a year is out. Rasberry jelly, please.

30Cal
December 7, 2006, 03:15 PM
A new cliplatch spring should measure 5/8" long. If yours isn't, then get a new one.

Ty

Dienekes
December 8, 2006, 01:32 AM
If in fact the gas cylinder needs tightening up it you can just do some (very) light peening of the barrel splines. One simple way is to just put a ball bearing of about 3/8" diameter on top of the spline where the keys rest and give it a tap. Not much needed and go slowly. Ideally you would tap the splines in such a way that the rear ring of the gas cylinder will tend to bear on the bottom of the barrel--but on a non-accurized rifle I doubt it would matter too much as long as it's on snugly.

BTW remove and replace the gas cylinder using a flat piece of wood between it and the hammer to protect it. (That gas cylinder wrench is nice to protect things, including the splines, too.)

I find that after 1000 or so rounds the splines loosen up a bit anyway and I have to upset them a bit more to snug things up the way I like them.

Headless Thompson Gunner
December 8, 2006, 02:57 AM
and a rather beat down stock with a "P" in a circle pressed into it (anyone able to tell me what that signifies?)It means that the rifle was proof-tested. The rifles were tested for strength by firing an extra high pressure "proof" cartridge. If the rifle doesn't kaboom it's deemed safe for use, and is stamped with a big P in a circle to show that it passed this test.

I haven't yet seen a Garand or a Springfield without the circle P stamped in the stock, so it's nothing special or noteworthy. If anything, all it means is that your stock hasn't been sanded down too much.

Are there any other stampings in the stock? If so you probably oughtn't sand it down. Those markings can be a big deal to Garand collectors.

redneckdan
December 8, 2006, 11:47 AM
you need to grease the op rod spring too. other wise is sounds like a screen door opening and closing. With a garand, more is better, within reason. Grease it up good, close the action and wipe of the excess. There is a noteable sound differnece between a properly grease grade and one that isn't.

Jenrick
December 8, 2006, 12:24 PM
Thanks for the info on the clip latch spring I'll check that.

Going over the stock, all that's there are a few crudely carved "X"'s, a whole lot of dings, and what might possibly be some more lettering near the comb. I'll need to break out a magnifier to check it out later.

I hear yeah about noisy. I've found that's a very good indicator in most firearms if they've been maintained correctly.

-Jenrick

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