Talk me out of buying an M1A.


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TheArchDuke
January 4, 2007, 12:16 AM
I went in to a gun shop yesterday to buy a Savage in .308 and ALMOST left with an M1A instead (figuratively. We have a 10 day wait here in the PRK)

I left with nothing, taking some time to reflect. If I buy an M1A it will be the most expensive thing I have ever bought or own (yes...including my car haha). I'm not sure any gun is worth $1200+ to me right now. But MY-GOODNESS I want one!

Is there a cheaper alternative to the M1A or maybe could you tell me of a place where I could buy a used one for relatively cheap?

Thanks.

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ACP230
January 4, 2007, 12:43 AM
If you have time to look around you might find a deal on an M1A at Culver's Shooting Pages, or www.sturmgewehr.com.
I've seen M1As below $1,200 at both places, but it's been a while.
Some show up here too, now and then.

Can you import M1As into the PRK? If not the price you quoted doesn't sound too bad.

I've had an M1A for many years. It was a target shooter's back up rifle and had some target work done before I bought it. I've done nothing to it but shoot and clean it and it is still my most consistently accurate centerfire rifle.

So, I wouldn't talk you out of buying one, unless I was in line right behind you and wanted it myself. :D

TheArchDuke
January 4, 2007, 12:51 AM
"So, I wouldn't talk you out of buying one, unless I was in line right behind you and wanted it myself."

I was afraid someone would tell me that haha

earplug
January 4, 2007, 02:04 AM
Do you have the time to learn to shoot it? Do you have A place to shoot at 300 yards or longer? Do your eyes work well enough to use the iron sights?
I have owned three M1A's and I'm just to lazy to learn to shoot them as well as they can be shot.
I have more fun with lessor rifles that I can use.
A bolt gun in .223 is hard to beat for fun and satisfaction.

azredhawk44
January 4, 2007, 02:05 AM
Nope, you're gonna have to get it. There is no earthly reason why any man who can spell "M-1-A" shouldn't own one.

There is no cure.:evil:

crazed_ss
January 4, 2007, 03:18 AM
I left with nothing, taking some time to reflect. If I buy an M1A it will be the most expensive thing I have ever bought or own (yes...including my car haha). I'm not sure any gun is worth $1200+ to me right now. But MY-GOODNESS I want one!

Is there a cheaper alternative to the M1A or maybe could you tell me of a place where I could buy a used one for relatively cheap?

Get it. I see you're in San Diego.. Can I ask which shop you went to? Sounds like they're quoting you an excellent price. I have a "Loaded" M1A with Stainless Barrel and it cost $1550 + fees + tax. It is the most expensive item I've ever purchased. It is worth it.

In CA there are no alternatives for a .308 semi-auto battle rifle that takes detachable mags.

plexreticle
January 4, 2007, 03:39 AM
I have an M1A and I like it but I paid about half of what it's worth. You could do better with the $1200, imho. I think you could sink the $1200 into a Garand and have a much better rifle.

If you get the m1a you'll like it though. They are great shooters.

ForeverArmed
January 4, 2007, 04:39 AM
I was interested in getting an M1A until I heard a rumor that some of the cast receivers have been known to stretch with continued firing, possibly causing problems. The M14 receiver is a forging, so it doesn't have that issue.

Opinions seem to vary on the topic, with many people saying that the cast receivers are fine. But if I were going to go the M1A/M14 route at this time, I'd at least consider one of these:

http://www.lrbarms.com/

qajaq59
January 4, 2007, 07:23 AM
Are you going to get $1200 worth of fun out of it? That's always the criteria for me.

flip180
January 4, 2007, 08:27 AM
"I was interested in getting an M1A until I heard a rumor that some of the cast receivers have been known to stretch with continued firing, possibly causing problems. The M14 receiver is a forging, so it doesn't have that issue"

http://m-14forum.com/upload/showthread.php?t=25962

Flip.

jrfoxx
January 4, 2007, 08:32 AM
Unless the removeable 10 round mag, or .308 versus 30-06 is a big sticking point, how bout a CMP M1 Garand as a cheaper alternative? Or maybe a CMP M1 carbine when they come in (honestly don't know what price they go for though, so that may not be a good alternative price-wise)?....Just throwing it out there since you ask for alternatives...

de
January 4, 2007, 09:30 AM
I had one. I put about 1100 rounds thru it, and it shot under an inch at 100. I put a scope on it and it no longer weighed 10 lbs. It weighed 12. Magazines are expensive but necessary, and being a hunter found that this very large rifle was a pain to lug around. It was equally hard to get in and out of the jeep with as it was long and took a lot of room and as I also said it was heavy.
For the same money you can get set up very well in an AR15 such as a Bushmaster, have the same (or better) accuracy, and half the weight. I use mine on coyotes, bobcats, varmits, and feral hogs weighing in excess of 300 lbs. Mine is an M4A3 with a 2 to 7 vari x 2 scope. Total weight is about 7lbs.JM2CW:scrutiny:

Onmilo
January 4, 2007, 09:45 AM
Unless you are allowed to strip the rifle and inspect the parts it contains and unless you know what you are looking for while inspecting those parts then simply put, the current rifles are not worth the sum of the aftermarket parts that are being used to assemble them.

Is that enough to make you change your mind?

When Springfield Inc. was still offering barrelled receivers that featured genuine USGI Mil-Spec barrels I was recommending that people buy one of those and assemble, or have assembled, a rifle that utilized USGI parts and stocks.
I have never bore any complaints against the Springfield Inc. receivers and still don't, but frankly, the quality of the parts on recent rifles has been near substandard and the barrels are really not that great either.

I haven't had any dealings with LRB Arms in well over a year or more and don't know if this company is still extent.
It was formed and run by a guy who bought the patent rights to Mike Kelly's M14 type forged receiver.
I used two of these receivers to build rifles for customers and I was quite impressed by the overall quality.
If this company is still around you may wish to look into their offerings before springing for an Illinois made rifle.
HTH and good luck with your decision.

AK103K
January 4, 2007, 10:22 AM
Go ahead and get it, you'll like it. :)

If I buy an M1A it will be the most expensive thing I have ever bought or own (yes...including my car haha).
Dont feel bad, I havent spent more than $1000 on a car for over ten years. No car payments and cheap insurance leaves more money for guns. :)

TX_Shooter
January 4, 2007, 10:31 AM
I say just get it, b/c that way your considered cool in my book :neener:

No, but really that Nato 308 cal is a sweet bullet. I enjoy shooting 308's from my buddies rifle.

Bottom Gun
January 4, 2007, 10:57 AM
Having owned two M1A's and a Garand in the past, my vote would be for a Garand.
You can get one for not much more than half the price of an M1A and can use the leftover cash for ammo, a new barrel, etc.

FWIW, the early Springfield Armory M1A I had was junk. The op rod was crudely made and would sometimes pop off the bolt roller. That REALLY concerned me. A gunsmith friend examined it and told me to replace the op rod.
I tried to find a GI issue op rod to replace it but was unable to. This was over 25 years ago and parts like op rods were scarce for some reason.
That left a bad taste as far as M1A's were concerned, especially since my Winchester Garand shot just as well. I later parted the M1A out and used the op rod and some cord to tie my tomato plants in place. It was much better suited for that application.

Another consideration was the ease of carry. I used to hike around the desert with my rifles and found the Garand to be easier and more comfortable to throw over my shoulder since it didn't have the large magazine to contend with.
Also, I did not feel I needed 20 rounds to hit what I was shooting at so I found myself out with the Garand a lot more often than the M1A.

Whichever rifle you choose, be sure to examine it carefully so you don't end up with a lemon like I had. I have heard people say to avoid certain brands but I have no knowledge of the details. Do some research before you buy.

Now before the M1A lovers here get their panties in a wad over my negative remarks about MY rifle, keep in mind that I was sharing MY experience with MY rifles and not slamming YOUR beloved baby. I'm well aware that YOUR rifle is much better.:rolleyes:

meef
January 4, 2007, 10:59 AM
If you buy an M1A your girlfriend will give you crabs.




There.

Bottom Gun
January 4, 2007, 11:00 AM
That's right! I forgot to mention the crabs.:D

CU74
January 4, 2007, 02:44 PM
Last I looked, CMP still had a few Field Grade Garands on hand - $425+$22.95 shipping. I ordered one yesterday.

CMP is expecting to have Carbines available in a few weeks - no word on what the prices will be. (Doesn't matter - I will pay it.)

http://www.odcmp.com/

ArmedBear
January 4, 2007, 02:51 PM
An M1A is one heavy rifle.

Gator
January 4, 2007, 03:33 PM
I was interested in getting an M1A until I heard a rumor that some of the cast receivers have been known to stretch with continued firing, possibly causing problems.

A silly, baseless rumor.

$1200 for an M1A is not a bad price at all, and it will be one of the best rifles you will ever own. I have three :)

As far as weight goes, it's only 9#; thats about the same as an FAL and about a pound less than an M1. A tricked out HB AR weighs almost 9#!

Yellowtail3
January 4, 2007, 03:56 PM
Talk me out of buying an M1A.

Okay...

Con: it is expensive, chunky, not a great deer rifle, it doesn't come in 30/30, no pretty bluing, and you can't hunt with it in some states, and hard to see sights at prime shooting times (first/last light).

Pro: go bang bang bang, upset antis, neato rifle, have something as expensive as a used Ford Escort.

sigstroker
January 5, 2007, 01:37 AM
A CMP Field Grade Garand is going to look awfully beat and worn compared to a new Springfield Armory M1A. The comparison is apples and oranges. I bet by the time you get it refinished with new wood, it's not going to be a ton cheaper than the M1A.

The bad thing about M1 carbines is he can't use the military 15 round magazines. So he has to find aftermarket magazines that won't be as reliable or cheap.

My M1A is one of my favorite rifles.

Jackal
January 5, 2007, 01:51 AM
Blah, M1A, just a glorified SKS. If you have got to spend $1200, get yourself some health insurance. Your gonna need it with that Garand-a-tosis.:)

ForeverArmed
January 5, 2007, 01:51 AM
I was interested in getting an M1A until I heard a rumor that some of the cast receivers have been known to stretch with continued firing, possibly causing problems.

A silly, baseless rumor.
I'd hardly call it "silly," considering that any rifle by any manufacturer can have quality control problems, and it's entirely plausible that a cast receiver (especially if improperly heat treated) could get battered out of spec with repeated firing. Kind of like some aluminum FAL upper receivers that have failed catastrophically (as shown on the DSA web site).

Having said that, you might be right that it's baseless. Apparently it was Boston T. Party (author of Boston's Gun Bible) who said he had the problem. While I doubt he's lying, he may have simply gotten a rare lemon that wasn't heat treated right.

Zundfolge
January 5, 2007, 01:57 AM
Is there a cheaper alternative to the M1A
Not for you Californians.

Vepr .308 (or other .308 AK)? Nope, not allowed.
AR-10? Nope, not allowed.
FAL? Nope, not allowed.
HK G3/PTR 91? Nope, not allowed.


Unless you want to stick with a semi auto hunting gun like the Browning BAR, the only semi auto .308 they let you have there in Cali is the M1A


$1200 is about what they cost out here in "Free America" too.

possum
January 5, 2007, 02:00 AM
Talk me out of buying an M1A.
No i will not!:)

but if the m1a is a little too much in the cost depatment then i might suggest that you look at the fal's or a cmp garand. sweet gun either way you go. and the garand can be had for way less than that, i see them at the gun shows all the time.

Lebben-B
January 5, 2007, 06:06 AM
No i will not!
Me neither. I got a Scout model for Christmas and it's nothing but sunshine and light. Get it - you won't regret it.

Mike

sacp81170a
January 5, 2007, 06:41 AM
SAI also makes PRK legal "recoil compensators" so you can legally own it. I've got an SAI M1A loaded, and I've had nothing but fun shooting it. I'm saving up now to buy a Scout, which would be much easier to carry on a hunting trip. A full sized M1A is a very long gun, but that's part of what makes them so accurate (large sight radius). Go on, buy it. You'll love it! :D

10X
January 5, 2007, 02:03 PM
When you find a good one, the M1A is just wonderful to shoot.

That said, Springfield's quality is inconsistent. I've had more bad ones than good ones. Minor issues that I could fix, I won't mention. The big problems were with bad chambers, incorrect barrel indexing, incorrect barrel alignment all with new NM or Super Match rifles over several years.

I, for one, won't buy anymore Springfield M1As because of upredictable quality.

Davo
January 5, 2007, 02:26 PM
I want one, but realize they dont excell really at anything (but can do most things ok).
They are HEAVY
Ammo is steep, and getting worse
They are not competitve target guns
There are better choices for hunting
There are few guns out that are as cool though, i shot a loaded M1A and it was a blast.

CanonNinja
January 5, 2007, 02:45 PM
a DPMS LR-308 is way cheaper and more accurate?

SlamFire1
January 5, 2007, 02:47 PM
Shot the M1a for years, got my last leg and a Regional Gold to win my Distinguished Rifleman's badge with it. Great rifle.

The Army product improved the Garand as far as they could go, on limited funding, and they created the M14. There are very few weaknesses in the M14. It is a very robust rifle. Yes the flash suppressor would catch in the shrouds, and the buttstock would break with a vigorous buttstroke. But it was still stronger than the Mouse gun. I personally like the M1a over the M14 as you never shot the M14 full auto and getting rid of the full action bar made the rifle easier to take apart and clean. The overall design is one of the most reliable 308 battle rifles out there, everyone who humped one in Vietnam wanted their rifle back after they were issued the M16.

A military issue M14 now weighs less than the standard issue M16A3 and fires an effective combat round. The 308 round had a short service life but it is an accurate, medium powered, service round. I consider the .223 as a good varmint round, the 308 as a good antipersonnel round, and the 50 caliber as a good antijeep round.

You will find that a well built M1a is a treasure and one of the best high powered battle rifles out there. I consider the FN/FAL as another outstanding battle rifle but it is harder to find one that is put together correctly.

If you think a M1a is going to get cheaper over time, well, ha, ha, ha. It won't.

TheArchDuke
January 5, 2007, 03:12 PM
You guys are doing the exact opposite of what I asked. hahaha

I'm not sure yet how soon I'm going to buy one but I've decided that I definitely will. I'm going to save up for a little bit to make sure I have money for other things that I need. I'm on a budget but an M1A might be do-able.

When I do finally go out and get one, what things should I look for that would indicate a less than excellent specimen? I'm just looking for the absolute basic gun. No camo stocks, rails, or fore grips. Optics will come later.

mindwip
January 5, 2007, 03:15 PM
If its to heavy dont they have light weight stocks for the m14?

Quintin Likely
January 6, 2007, 08:38 PM
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid222/p3939cecef7c9890c96395cd77301c62a/eb3c1529.jpg
Oh, you said talk you out of buying an M1A, I thought you meant in to. My bad. :evil:

On a serious note, there aren't many (any?) other options for you in ********** for a semi auto .308

Boston T. Party
April 5, 2007, 02:11 PM
Quote:
I was interested in getting an M1A until I heard a rumor that some of the cast receivers have been known to stretch with continued firing, possibly causing problems.

A silly, baseless rumor.
I'd hardly call it "silly," considering that any rifle by any manufacturer can have quality control problems, and it's entirely plausible that a cast receiver (especially if improperly heat treated) could get battered out of spec with repeated firing. Kind of like some aluminum FAL upper receivers that have failed catastrophically (as shown on the DSA web site).

Having said that, you might be right that it's baseless. Apparently it was Boston T. Party (author of Boston's Gun Bible) who said he had the problem. While I doubt he's lying, he may have simply gotten a rare lemon that wasn't heat treated right.

I never wrote that the cast receiver M1A/M14 was prone to
stretching, but that the commercial SA M1 Garand is.

My cast M1 Garand stretched.
Ron Smith looked it over and gave me the scoop.
The M1 gas system is more violent than the M14's, and
cast receivers apparently just aren't up to it.

Boston T. Party (aka Kenneth W. Royce)
http://www.javelinpress.com (Boston's books)
http://www.freestatewyoming.org (FSW website)
http://www.fundamentalsoffreedom.com/fswforum/index.php (FSW forum open to all)

TexasRifleman
April 5, 2007, 02:42 PM
When I do finally go out and get one, what things should I look for that would indicate a less than excellent specimen? I'm just looking for the absolute basic gun. No camo stocks, rails, or fore grips. Optics will come later.

Well you need to be aware up front that that path is the most expensive.

The M1A/M14 is not the easiest thing to scope.

If you buy a wood stocked M1A standard and want optics later it is going to be very expensive, or you will have to make a lot of compromises on mounting options.

Best to keep saving and get a model ready for optics up front or you will spend a lot more.

That said, the iron sights of the M14 are awfully hard to beat and I won't ever put optics on mine.

Peter M. Eick
April 6, 2007, 09:00 AM
http://pages.sbcglobal.net/eickpm/sm_targets2.jpg


Talk you out of one? Yeah I have the reason. Look at those targets. That dastardly rifle cannot put all 50 bullets into one hole at 100 yards. I mean come one, what a piece of gunk. We all know that off the shelf autoloaders like that Supermatch should be able to shoot in the tenths for a 50 shot group at 100 yards. Just terrible accuracy...

:rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

amprecon
April 6, 2007, 07:35 PM
As much as I wanted one, I put it off for probably 15 years agonizing over them every time I saw one........that feeling never went away until just recently.


I don't have those feelings anymore :cool:

wcwhitey
April 6, 2007, 07:45 PM
The price kept me away for years, 600, 700, 800, 850 SOLD! Your gonna buy one anyway, might as well do before the price goes up. $850 was a steal considering the price now. Look at it like this, the gun has appreciated roughly ten to twenty cents for every round I have shot through it ,good deal! :what:

glockman19
April 6, 2007, 08:01 PM
Nope, you're gonna have to get it. There is no earthly reason why any man who can spell "M-1-A" shouldn't own one.

Glad to hear you're finally going to get one. One of the best rifles I own. Maybe the best. I can't wait to get another, problem for me is what one? most likely another loaded except this time it will be wood with a satinless barrel, instead of Fiberglass with a carbon barrel.

Stevie-Ray
April 6, 2007, 08:19 PM
Nah. I agonized over an M1A way back when SA was selling them for less than 600 bucks, and I was looking for a heavy 7.62 NATO rifle that I could sit with for hours punching paper wearing a silly grin. It was either an M1A or a FAL. I opted for the FAL, due to nothing in particular, really. I just liked the heavy barrel SAR-48 better. I paid $645 back then and I've never been sorry, but since the M1A came in second place, I could certainly recommend them to anybody that would like one. As far as the money now goes, well, I paid $1295 last year for my Colt AR15. Didn't really want to pay that much, but I wanted a Colt rather than the less expensive makes, that's all. I considered Bushmaster for a second or so, (about 300-400 bucks less) also Armalite. But I got the Colt, even though I never thought I'd pay that for any gun.

Get the M1A. Then sit there at your favorite outdoor spot, with that silly grin on your face, along with the rest of us.

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