M1 Garand- Still on Duty 2007


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Titan6
December 26, 2007, 02:23 PM
I was absolutely stunned last week to see an M1 Garand being carried by a soldier in the mess hall in Baghdad. True he was on the color guard but this was not a drill rifle, it was fully functioning.

The rule in the chow hall is that you "must carry" or you will not be served. He was carrying the weapon he was issued. Nice to know that it is still around nearly three generations later.

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Smokehouse69
December 26, 2007, 02:56 PM
I wonder if it had been rechambered for 7.62 NATO or if is still .30-06?

Titan6
December 26, 2007, 02:58 PM
I did not ask the question, but the rifle had been rebuilt. It was in fine cosmetic condition.

mukluk
December 26, 2007, 03:02 PM
It's a cerimonial rifle; it's only required to function well enough to fire blanks and be manually cycled. Judging from what I've personally seen regarding honor/color guard rifles I would be amazed if it would function as a semi auto let alone have any chance of being remotely accurate. All this is moot of course since the likelyhood of there being any usable M2 ball available is pretty slim.

Vern Humphrey
December 26, 2007, 03:04 PM
The rule in the chow hall is that you "must carry" or you will not be served.
Wouldn't it be great if that were the rule everywhere?

Personally, I think that when you show up at the polls to vote, you should have to have your rifle with you, ready for inspection, show your ammo pouches are full, and present your current rifle qualification certificate.

Jeremy2171
December 26, 2007, 03:05 PM
Theres plenty of usable 30cal ammo in Iraq...I have 3 cans of 4-1 AP-TR SL53 dated stuff here. Shoots great in my '03.

Titan6
December 26, 2007, 03:08 PM
It's a cerimonial rifle; it's only required to function well enough to fire blanks and be manually cycled.

He didn't have any blanks for it. Only Ball.

High Planes Drifter
December 26, 2007, 03:28 PM
:what:


How long did you talk to him? Did he say why it is he was issued the rifle? I mean, was his unit out of M16's?

kir_kenix
December 26, 2007, 03:38 PM
ive seen quite a few m14's in biop, but never a garand. next time im up there im going to be on the lookout tho...

Oohrah
December 26, 2007, 05:13 PM
Well Mukluc,
I have to disagree with you. Our Marine Corps League has several
detachments with Ceremonal Garands that even with blanks, fire semi
auto. The six that I have had for several years now, have never failed
to function 100%. They even even work with the new type blanks with
the crimped cased mouths. KIA Marines are rendered military honors by
their units using M-16s that do not function with blanks as well.
The Garands come with the gas cyclinder lock removed, adapter scewed
on, and the gas cyclider screw screwed down. I have noticed the new
blank adapters have the orfice in it, larger to handle the faster burning rate
new blank powder. Real life is the rifles are cleaned after every event.
They are run pretty lubricant dry, and chamber attention a must due, to
not very clean burning powder. Just for info only, one part is all that would
allow complete functioning with M2 ammo.
Semper Fi:D

rero360
December 26, 2007, 05:31 PM
actually now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure I saw one guy carrying a Garand, tons of M14s, but I do remember seeing one garand, complete with the leather cheek rest and some sort of scope mounted, probably converted to .308, it was no ceremonial rifle, that thing saw patrols.

Roswell 1847
December 26, 2007, 05:42 PM
The Navy had a lot of Garands converted to 7.62 NATO ,partly for use in shooting at mines, the 5.56 couldn't set one off.
Its possible that a few of our ships still have these converted Garands in their weapons stores.
There has been recent talk of retraining some Naval personel in land warfare tactics. Of course many Naval personel are already serving on the ground in Iraq in various roles, and as security.

My Dad's WW2 Blue Jacket's Manual has operating and maintenance instructions for the WW1 Lewisgun as well as more modern firearms.
The Navy doesn't like to ditch tried and true weapons, and the 7.62 Garands could still be the best rifle for busting floating mines.

Just saying, its possible that a few Garands are still in inventory just as a few 1911 pistols have re emerged in recent years when needed.

possum
December 27, 2007, 05:24 AM
never seen a garand here, a few 416's, a few m14's.

sacp81170a
December 27, 2007, 05:50 AM
Personally, I think that when you show up at the polls to vote, you should have to have your rifle with you, ready for inspection, show your ammo pouches are full, and present your current rifle qualification certificate.

I'll second that!

Moonclip
December 27, 2007, 06:03 AM
I believe in Switzerland it is or was traditional to show up at the polls armed. An 03 in Iraq? A M1c or M1d on patrol? Very interesting. I though M1 Garands were phased out of USN service by the end of the 1960's. My ship had 1911a1's as late as 1997 though.

Jeremy2171
December 27, 2007, 06:40 AM
There are no M1s still in USN service, they have been replaced by M14s or M16s depending upon the ship.

1911 guy
December 27, 2007, 08:07 AM
I was part of a security detail onboard the U.S.S. Carl Vinson (CVN-70) and there were .38 revolvers in the weapons stores. They got used, too. I carried one on watch a few times. It comes as no surprise to me that there are M1's still around and being used.

Titan6
December 27, 2007, 10:20 AM
I didn't get a chance to talk to the soldier but for a minute as we were both on our way somewhere else. But he was Army, the weapon was fully functioning, did not have a scope, he had rounds for it and looked in good shape. There are a bit of M14s over here that are scoped as well as some other tools.

I just thought it was neat that thing has been carried now for it's fourth generation and still does the job. Somebody really did something right back then and it shows even today. I talked to a friend and he said that some of the DM's here do have M1's but I have not seen that set up. I am also glad I am not on the other end of one.

kBob
December 27, 2007, 10:57 AM
The sniper rifles in use by the Infantry Regiment ( I forgot their number designator but the Motto was "deeds, not words" unfortunately the motto of a para militry unit in a bad adventure movie of the time) of the 3rd Armored Division in 1982 were M-1Ds with an open ended prong flash supressor They had one of the M80-something scopes. They were in .30-06 and were issued to the individual shooter after attending a two week course up at Baumholder......I was terribly dissappointed when I was told that by no means could a butter bar red leg stuck in a weenie desk job go to the school and get a rifle.

The rifles were in .30-06 BTW. Ammo was match in 20 round boxes and loaded by the shooters into clips or Black Tip AP in clips. They were considered to be 800 meter rifles with either.

-Bob Hollingsworth

Travis Morgan
December 28, 2007, 12:33 AM
Funny. They're still screwing around trying to find another platform to launch tiny little bullets, but too proud to re-issue an old standby that works! :what: Idiots.

MatthewVanitas
December 28, 2007, 02:45 AM
Funny. They're still screwing around trying to find another platform to launch tiny little bullets, but too proud to re-issue an old standby that works! Idiots.

Oooookay. More like "they realize it's not practical to switch back to a rifle and cartridge which weighs twice as much as the current issue, particularly a rifle which hasn't been in large scale production since the long before the average sergeant was even born."

If it were a "pride" issue, Marines would still be carrying the M1903.


Anyway, I'd be extremely curious to hear the story behind this M1 Garand sighting.

My assumption, had I seen such, was that his unit had confiscated it from the Iraqi insurgents, and somehow he was able to carry it around without getting hassled.

I've been told that carrying confiscated weapons is extremely uncommon in Iraq now, but back in 2004 it wasn't unheard of. Not the "every single Marine ditched his M16 for an AK" that some Internet folks make it out to be, but over the course of a deployment I saw maybe three or four Marines/sailors with AKs, one EOD gunny who carried a confiscated Iranian G3K, and a handful of enlisted EODmen (working for said gunny) who said that gunny let the drivers carry a Sterling or similar confiscated subgun on their laps while driving. Oh, and one Marine captain who inexplicably carried a French FAMAS. That's the sum total of confiscated gear I saw actively in use over the course of seven months on one of the largest combat bases in Anbar province.

The notion of a color guard carrying a combat-serviceable M1 Garand is very odd.

The notion that an enlisted man could still get away with carrying non-issue gear in late 2007 is even odder.

If you get any more info, I'm very curious.

Moonclip
December 28, 2007, 03:43 AM
We had .38's in the USN in the armory in 1995. Anyone seen any revolvers as of today?

Titan6
December 28, 2007, 07:40 AM
My assumption, had I seen such, was that his unit had confiscated it from the Iraqi insurgents, and somehow he was able to carry it around without getting hassled.

I've been told that carrying confiscated weapons is extremely uncommon in Iraq now, but back in 2004 it wasn't unheard of. Not the "every single Marine ditched his M16 for an AK" that some Internet folks make it out to be, but over the course of a deployment I saw maybe three or four Marines/sailors with AKs, one EOD gunny who carried a confiscated Iranian G3K, and a handful of enlisted EODmen (working for said gunny) who said that gunny let the drivers carry a Sterling or similar confiscated subgun on their laps while driving. Oh, and one Marine captain who inexplicably carried a French FAMAS. That's the sum total of confiscated gear I saw actively in use over the course of seven months on one of the largest combat bases in Anbar province.

Carrying anything other than what you are issued will get you in trouble these days, especially if you are near the flag pole. The only ones I have seen not carrying standard weapons are the special ops guys and they have all kinds of toys but no AKs (or Garands either that I have seen).

This guy was carrying this last week. I have moved out of that FOB and so I likely won't see him again but if I do see another I will try to run it to ground. Like I said, I really couldn't believe it myself.

def4pos8
December 28, 2007, 10:37 AM
It might amuse you to learn that this miserable, old ChAir Force puke has a 1:25000 chart of Truppenuebungsplatz Baumholder, framed, on a wall. I spent too much time there for my own good in the late '80s. I was range safety officer for my cruise missile unit. We had Tomahawks on some really interesting trucks.

Let's see: ChAir Force unit, using a Navy weapon, performing an Army mission, with Marine Corps defense doctrine, working for NATO -- has to qualify as a five-finger circular, uh, event.:scrutiny::evil:

Cosmoline
December 28, 2007, 10:46 AM
Strange things can happen in wartime. Just as long as you don't see someone at the mess hall showing up with the Brown Bess he was issued I think we're OK.

kBob
December 28, 2007, 11:03 AM
def4pos,

Come on I tease about service stuff. Of my three best friends in High school on just retired from the Corps a couple of months before 9/11. One just retired from the office of the cheif of staff of the USAF. One got to West Point and got booted in the class of 77 Electrical ENgineering scandel and "Ich" went US Army Regular Enlisted Infantryman (in Germany and my maps of Hoenfels and such are in storage), got out and used yea olde GI bill to become an officer.....and the job placement tests I took between all insisted I was best suited to be a Navy Officer ( and may have been right)

As an Enlisted puke I worked security for the locked and loaded Pershing 1A system in the mid 1970's, mostly at Combat Alert Sites and the occassional Feild Alert (deployment) Sites. I was on duty at a CAS when we went to war status, awaiting weapons release in 1973. Big question was how far one could run in eight minutes....................

At least the hawk did not kick as bad down on the plains as it kicked you up on the mountain.

Commisioning for me equaled private office, seperate cubby office over in the motor pool, off post quarters, hot meals, a car, and a shiny butt on my BDUs and more wear and tear on my Greens. Yet some how I missed the Infantry life of only 28 days in garrison a year, missing meals for days on occasion and sleeping curled up with just the clothes on my back and my poncho on the side of a stony hill in subfreezing weather after having left the tanker roll with shelter half and sleeping bag etc miles back where I was told to stack it with everyone else's.

Ah, youth.......and topic drift.

-Bob Hollingsworth

HorseSoldier
December 28, 2007, 11:45 AM
Curious. I also wonder on the caliber, since all gov't stocks of 30-06 ball were turned over to CMP a while ago.

Roswell 1847
December 28, 2007, 12:19 PM
My assumption, had I seen such, was that his unit had confiscated it from the Iraqi insurgents, and somehow he was able to carry it around without getting hassled.


I'd thought about this as well.

As for an Honor Guard Garand being unserviceable, I once owned a Japanese Naval Honor Guard rifle. The Jap rifle had no rear sight and the barrel was a smooth bore tube screwed into the cut off barrel lump. The stock was one piece rather than dovetailed from two pieces like the service rifle. It was meant for blank firing only.
But near as I can tell the US was never into building or modifying rifles for blank use only.

Then again if the guy was hungry and knew he had to have a weapon on his shoulder to be served he'd likely pick up whatever rifle was most handy, perhaps a rifle he was in the midst of cleaning, regardless of whether it was functional.

There is a rule against using other than issue weapons. This is to cut down on friendly fire incidents when muzzle blast signatures might lead an observer to believe the enemy had taken a US postion and call in artillery.
Lack of faith in the 5.56 if not the entire M16-M4 platform has apparently led to more US troops using the AK or other weapons when they can.
Also since US Troops often work closely with Iraq Army I suspect they would sometimes want to carry the same weapons when in the field in combined operations.

PS
I've heard that the Turkish Border Guards still issued aging Garands to check points and guard stations. Of course they have only in recent years sold off stocks of Lebel rifles that were still in service with game wardens.

Jeremy2171
December 28, 2007, 01:24 PM
Curious. I also wonder on the caliber, since all gov't stocks of 30-06 ball were turned over to CMP a while ago.

Only "surplus"(excess) stocks were turned over..the .guv still has M2 Ball in inventory along with .30carbine as well...........

pgeleven
December 28, 2007, 02:05 PM
i was on rustamiyah from oct 06-sep 07 (eastern baghdad and most heavily indirect-fire hit FOB) the only rifles i saw our guys carry in theatre were M-16s, M-4s, M-14s a handful of MP-5's and a few M-24s. never saw a Garand. i think the original poster may be mistaken. also, we werent allowed to carry any weapons on patrol that we had previously confiscated, otherwise every squad would have had a Dragunov.

El Tejon
December 28, 2007, 02:12 PM
Maybe he was carrying the M1 on a bet?:confused:

"Dude, I bet you my last Playboy and four packs of smokes that you won't carry that M1 that Morrissey found to chow."

Young, dumb and wanted to stand out in a crowd?

Cosmoline
December 28, 2007, 02:31 PM
Maybe this war has been going on too long...

Neo-Luddite
December 28, 2007, 03:51 PM
Every Garand fan secretly harbors a semi-romantic notion that this is true; I have no doubt that this instance did happen. Why not? People said for decades that the m-14's would re-appear for combat use when the m-16 proved inadequate. To a limited extent that has come to pass. I have a friend who drew an 1897 Winchester trench gun that went with him to Iraq in 2003. There are MANY weapons in inventory that are far-older than any soldier serving.

pgeleven
December 28, 2007, 05:42 PM
oldest weapon in the US arsenal still in continued use:

US Marine Corps NCO sword

maybe we need some of them over there...

Evil Monkey
December 28, 2007, 07:03 PM
.....otherwise every squad would have had a Dragunov.

Our troops like the dragunov? Can you give us more info on why every squad would have a dragunov if they were allowed to? What does it offer that the SAMR and SDMR can't offer?

I've always thought the SVD was obsolete for squad use due to the fact that it's too long of a rifle and only has a ten round magazine. At least the SVD would be highly inappropriate in the US military considering the squad marksman is supposed to participate in CQB with rest of his squad. Kind of hard to do with an SVD.

Devonai
December 28, 2007, 07:45 PM
I would have tripped over my own feet and sprained my jaw asking that guy for an explanation.

Roswell 1847
December 28, 2007, 08:07 PM
I've always thought the SVD was obsolete for squad use due to the fact that it's too long of a rifle and only has a ten round magazine.
The dragonov has one very real advantage, its chambered for a round that can walk through doors and walls that the 5.56 can't penetrate.
Not speaking from any personal experiance but from reading about WW2 house to house fighting tactics. The BAR could chew a hole big enough to crawl through in the substantial European dwellings, and no sniper could be sure that his perch wouldn't become his tomb very quickly.
US 7.62 NATO AP rounds aren't as effective as the WW2 30/06 AP or the Soviet 7.62X54 AP or steel core ball. They've recently tried to upgrade US 7.62 AP by using a lighter hyper velocity slug, probably the wrong direction to take since its masonry rather than metal they need to defeat.
In one well reported action Jihadis took refuge in a basement and lay on their backs shooting up through the floor using 7.62X54 caliber weapons, the US troopers M4s couldn't penetrate the floor or the thick basement door two of the Jihadis used for cover.

Having at least one heavy hitting weapon would be nice. I'd prefer an M14 if suitable AP rounds were available. During desert Storm at least one well to do officer ordered European 7.62 NATO AP from a private manufacturer at his own expense to feed his company's M60's when he found that through a SNAFU almost all US AP ammo had been used up in training after Viet nam, and not replaced by later production runs. By the time DS rolled around none was readily available for his gunners.

the foot
December 28, 2007, 08:31 PM
Carrying is Carrying. M1 Garand is ok by me. Sometimes I carry my 45 Colt singe action.

def4pos8
December 28, 2007, 08:35 PM
You're forgiven.

If I had kept the stripes I started with, I'd have retired in '93 instead of being RIFed as an O-3 in '92. No tears on my part. I realized that I had joined the wrong tribe and was tired of working/dealing with amateurs. Wifey retired as a Major (Nurse) in '98 so we do alright.

Wearing bars and doing staff work had its advantages. I worked my POW (a Steyr SSG-P2) into our Operations Instructions. As a Jagdschein holder, the Deutschers were cool with me being a designated forager for my field unit.:scrutiny:

During our final TAC/EVAL, I was the responding element to a "sniper attack". When the German and Brit evaluators asked why the Hauptman was low-crawling through the ditch toward the bad guy, they terminated the problem with good compliments when told that our Jaeger (me) found the prospect of hunting humans as a welcome change of duties. Insane people like me were in short supply.:evil:

Serving had its moments. . . .

Nightcrawler
December 28, 2007, 11:15 PM
Interestingly enough, they've been using experimental lasers in Iraq and Afghanistan to detonate IEDs from a safe distance.

Who would have ever dreamed that the M1 would continue to serve, in any capacity, even if only cerimonial, alongside first generation laser weapons?

Hell, who would've thought that the M14 would still be around when lasers and robots begin to appear on the battlefield?

Muchless the 1911.

Titan6
December 29, 2007, 09:35 AM
For the record I am 100% certain it was an M1 Garand. Me and one of my team mates both own one. He was as surprised as I was. Why or how exactly it got there is still a mystery to me.

HorseSoldier
December 29, 2007, 10:13 AM
Only "surplus"(excess) stocks were turned over..the .guv still has M2 Ball in inventory along with .30carbine as well...........

That's not what the last ammo spreadsheet I have indicates. All four DODICs for M2 ball 30-06 are slated to CMP support (which is now sold out of Lake City ammo), while .30 Carbine ammo does remain in the system to support SOF unit training.

Edited to add -- 30-06 DODICs don't include MG ammo, so maybe that's a possible source, though I'm still skeptical of someone being issued a 30-06 weapon in a go-to-war context.

HorseSoldier
December 29, 2007, 10:19 AM
Our troops like the dragunov? Can you give us more info on why every squad would have a dragunov if they were allowed to? What does it offer that the SAMR and SDMR can't offer?

Does offer some thump shooting 7.62x54.

Of course shooting it without the actual Russian sniper ammo and just running PK MG ammo, it's not really accurate enough for DMR use (I've heard 4-6 MOA from guys who've played with them in theater). The Russian sniper ammo supposedly tightens that up significantly, though how much of that you'll find in Iraq or Afghanistan is an open question . . .

I've always thought the SVD was obsolete for squad use due to the fact that it's too long of a rifle and only has a ten round magazine. At least the SVD would be highly inappropriate in the US military considering the squad marksman is supposed to participate in CQB with rest of his squad. Kind of hard to do with an SVD.

+1. You'd be better off with an SR-25 or even M14.

Avenger
December 29, 2007, 11:18 AM
I would assume that it was a pick-up as well. Maybe somebody just hadn't "gotten around" to reporting it in, or their sargeant had a weak spot. Now if he was wearing lace-up spats, I'd start to wonder what the cooks are doing to the food......

If I was issued a "Ceremonial" firearm in a combat zone, even the rear areas, I'd make sure it was functional (and usable) in short order.

woodybrighton
December 29, 2007, 12:41 PM
may have been a joke. Once saw a new LT issued a Tommy gun dug up from god knows where :)
there was a rumour that some L42's had been refurbed and put into duty basically a rebored enfield proved foundless though:(

Mark Taylor
January 9, 2008, 09:57 PM
Avenger,
"Lace up spats" are properly called puttees.

Vern Humphrey
January 9, 2008, 10:05 PM
Nope -- puttees, which are a criss-cross araingement of overlapping bandages, are called puttees. "Lace up spats" are called "leggins."

Mark Taylor
January 9, 2008, 10:46 PM
Vern,
I have heard them called puttees, leggins, and gaiters; just not spats.

Avenger
January 11, 2008, 12:54 AM
Thanks guys, I knew there was a proper military term for them, but "spats" was all I could think of. It didn't help that I've been reading P.G. Wodehouse again.....British formal wear has a way of getting into one's brain.

MatthewVanitas
January 11, 2008, 01:57 AM
Nope -- puttees, which are a criss-cross araingement of overlapping bandages, are called puttees. "Lace up spats" are called "leggins."

IIRC, the Marine Times mentioned that the designers of the new USMC digital cammie uniform had seriously considered adding leggings to the uniform, in place of boot-bands.

That would have been a bit of a hassle in hot weather, but would've been most distinctive, as well as WWI retro.

John C
January 11, 2008, 02:53 AM
Apparently the US Army still has flintlock smoothbores in the inventory. A friend of mine who served in the Old Guard as an armorer said they had racks of flintlocks for ceremonial use. They even had black powder for blank loads. One of their duty uniforms is blue coats, tri-corner hats, and white powdered wigs.

-John

Vern Humphrey
January 11, 2008, 09:07 AM
Puttees are Indian in origin, from the Marattas. and were worn to protect a horseman's calves from pinching by the stirrup leathers. The British adopted them, together with the baggy Maratta trousers, called jodphurs. The British soon adopted jackboots to replace the puttees.

The more or less original version was often used by infantry, to keep mud, rocks, etc., out of their boots. The US Army used them in WWII, but adopted canvas leggins later as being more practical.

Interestingly enough, officers and cavalry wore leather leggins in lieu of jackboots. The boots only came to the ankle, and the leggins stretched from ankle to knee, being held in place by a spiral strap.

Today, many armored types wear "tanker boots" with a similar spiral strap and tell strange stories about why that style is used -- but it's an imitation of cavalry leather leggins.

Mark Taylor
January 11, 2008, 01:03 PM
Avenger,

"Jeeves lugged my purple socks out of the drawer as if he were a vegetarian
fishing a caterpillar out of his salad."

My Man Jeeves

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