New CMP Garand - Impressions and Questions (Long)


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HankB
August 26, 2004, 08:19 PM
Well, as was discussed here: http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=93236 I decided to get myself a CMP M1 - though I had seen other (alleged) CMP rifles that were in pretty grim condition, recent reports were sufficiently encouraging that I decided to take a chance.

I ordered a service grade Springfield Armory rifle, and I received it two weeks to the day after sending in my order. (I think that's really good service - Thanks, CMP!)

First impression - I think I got lucky. :)

There are only a few "dings" on the stock - just enough to add character - and the metal looks really nice. I'd venture to say that in general appearance, this rifle looks better than any of those I saw at the Austin gun show last week. The stock and handguards are well-matched, a rich, dark reddish-brown color - I see no reason to use the "Easy Off" or "Dishwasher" methods of stock refinishing I've read about.

Metal has only a trace of wear around the high points. There was no indication of what the throat and muzzle erosion measurements were, but the lands at the muzzle look clean and sharp, though there is a little copper fouling visible. A prism bore viewer seems to show a little roughness in one of the grooves near the throat - I'll have to see if it cleans up any. Otherwise the bore looks good. The only metal that's a little sub-par appears to be the buttplate, which has a somewhat speckled appearance.

A tag attached to the rifle has the letters SA G3 US written on one side, with TD on the other. Any ideas on the meaning?

The rifle appears to be mid-50's production, with SN 5,92x,xxx. The right side of the receiver (normally covered by the stock) has a T and an 8, with F6528291 below. (Drawing number?) The barrel has a large P, a space, and a T stamped in the side, followed by SA F6535448 10 55 A223A. There's a P and a smaller M following this number. (Is it possible it's still wearing the original barrel?)

Bolt is 6528287-SA with A15 below.

So it looks like these parts are all "correct" Springfield.

The other major parts: Op rod, 6535382 HRA; trigger housing, 6528290 HRA N; safety, HRA;

There's masking tape on both sides of the stock just above the buttplate, with the number "189" written on in magic marker. The tape is old and brittle - it's gonna be fun cleaning it off without messing up the stock.

There are only two cartouches on the stock - a "P" in a circle behind the trigger guard on the pistol grip, and a 1/2" square cartouche on the left side with 3 stars at the top above a stylized eagle.

If anyone can shed some light on this rifle's pedigree, probable date of manufacture or the meanings of the cartouches, I'd sure appreciate it.

Thanks . . .

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444
August 26, 2004, 09:05 PM
That sounds just like mine.
I got a USGI Service Grade Springfield Armory rifle about three weeks ago. Condition sounds about the same, just a couple dings in the stock which were very minor. Hanguard does not match the color of the other wood. Lots of HRA parts.
Check out this website: http://www.armscollectors.com/srs.htm

The stock cartouche you describe might be H&R. I was at a gunshow last month and was talking to a big dealer of this type of stuff. I saw a stock with a cartouche that sounds like you describe and asked him what it was: they said HRA. The reason I asked is because my Service Grade Greek has that cartouche. That gun is all HRA .

Jim K
August 26, 2004, 09:20 PM
The eagle and stars cartouche is the Defense Acceptance Stamp, which replaced the old stamps using an inspector's initials in the 1952-53 era for both new rifles and rebuilds.

Mixed parts are very common on CMP rifles, as they were on military rifles. While rifles came out of the factory with the "correct" parts, I can assure you that when something broke, no one cared a hoot about who made the replacement part. If it was in the supply system, it was "correct" and that is all we cared about. The same was true with rebuilds; when the rifle was reassembled, the depot worker reached into bins of parts and pulled out the first one that came to hand. He knew it would fit, and was new or at least serviceable, or it wouldn't be in the bin.

Jim

Trebor
August 26, 2004, 11:06 PM
The "SA G3 US" tag is the internal CMP tag they put on the rifle after they inspect and grading is completed. It means it's a Springfield Armory rifle, in condition grade 3 (service grade) and that it is a US Service Grade rifle, not a Danish or Greek return.

The stock sounds nicer then the majority of the Service Grade rifles I've seen lately. It's actually kind of rare to even get a DAS cartouche these days. Most stocks I've seen only have the "circle P" under the pistol grip, if that.

Even if the stock looks good now, it's probably dried out from long term storage. You should at least give it a gentle cleaning with Murphy's Oil Soap or a light detergent and then apply a couple coats of Boiled Linseed Oil or Tung Oil (whichever you prefer) to put some moisture back into the wood. This will help avoid cracking or damage. It's also amazing how much better even good wood looks after a coat of BLO or Turn has been applied. Buff it with an old nylon (stocking) or something similiar when you are done.

The 10-55 SA barrel means it's a Springfield Armory barrel from Oct, 1955, so it is likely to be the original barrel. I don't have the reference books to decode the drawing numbers, etc.

Go to www.jouster.com and post your info there on the M-1 board. It's likely someone will decode the rest of the gun for you.

Btw, sounds like you got a nice one.

NEtracker
August 27, 2004, 10:07 AM
Sounds like a great M1!
I have three from the CMP, RG WRA, SG HRA, SG SA Dane VAR.
Nice shootable pieces of history, two WWII era.
More info. can be found here...
http://www.battlerifles.com/

George S.
August 27, 2004, 11:30 AM
M1's are a whole lot of fun to shoot. When I take my CMP Garand to the range, I get lots of people that come up and ask about it, especially when they hear the "ping" of the ejecting clip. I usually hold back a couple of enbloc clips of ammo for any WWII or Korean veterans who start talking about their wartime experiences and offer to let them shoot it.

My Springfield SG Garand with a 6-digit S/N {that shows it to be an April 41 rifle} is one of the CMP Danish rifles with a VAR barrel. So far it seems to be fairly accurate with 4-6" groups at 100 yards but it's been 30 years since I fired a military rifle (M14) so it will take a bit of practice to be able to shoot accurately. I have gotten some 1" groups at 50yds with it so I think it will turn out to be a great rifle.

I have also found a lot of good information at www.battkerifles.com as well as
http://www.jouster.com/
http://www.memorableplaces.com/m1garand/index.html
http://www.100megsfree4.com/airground/ammo/ammo.htm
http://armscollectors.com/srs/lookup_m1.php

If you do a Google search on Garand, you will find lots of sites dealing with the rifle and its history.

HankB
August 27, 2004, 11:54 AM
I originally wrote:A prism bore viewer seems to show a little roughness in one of the grooves near the throat - I'll have to see if it cleans up any. After a little elbow grease with a cleaning rod, bore brush, and solvent, the "roughness" seems to be gone. I don't have a regular borescope, but I do have a little prismatic bore viewer that lets me look into the bore from the chamber end . . . from what I can see (and my eyes aren't the best) the lands are clean and sharp right back to the chamber, with no visible evidence of wear or pitting.

I don't think this rifle was shot very much before I got it. :D

I was thinking of perhaps rebarreling, glass bedding, and customizing the rifle if I got a dog . . . but somehow, doing that to this rifle just seems very, very, wrong.

StephenT
August 27, 2004, 12:20 PM
Good deal there, Hank. I also received a service grade Springfield M-1 from the CMP about 10 days ago. Mine arrived in great condition like yours, though I have a lower serial number of 3,237,xxx. I ran a patch soaked with Hopp's through the bore and am thinking of refinishing the wood with tung oil as recommended.

The 30.06 Korean surplus ammo on clips that I ordered from aimsurplus came out to $82 with shipping, compared to $115 (which I did not get) for the same thing at the gun show in Austin last weekend.

I'm not too sure where you folks with M-1 rifles are getting your dates from. My barrel doesn't have any markings at all. Are there any resources out there for identifying the year of production? Thanks, folks.

NEtracker
August 27, 2004, 12:40 PM
Hi StephenT,
If that Korean ball is KA headstamp, then it is Corrosive, so be sure and clean accordingly at the range before you pack it up.
I have used the non-corrosive Korean PS headstamp with no problems in my WRA. The other M1's have only seen Danish ball. I still need to scrape up my pennies for a crate of the CMP LC stuff.:cool:

(the only corrosive stuff I shoot is 8mm Mauser)

StephenT
August 27, 2004, 12:48 PM
Thanks for the heads up on the possiblility of corrosive Korean surplus, NETracker. I'll see what UPS delivers later this afternoon. I'm not too concerned about it, as I clean all my guns promptly after shooting them. I haven't been to the range in a while, so I may go try out the M-1 this afternoon.

NEtracker
August 27, 2004, 12:53 PM
No problem.
I use Windex myself on the Mauser, just on the bolt, chamber, bore, muzzle. Followed by Cleaning with the usual stuff at home. With the M1, you'll need to swab the gas system, gas cyl, plug/screww, lock. Some shooters like to use hot water for the corrosive salts, but I just can't see myself toting a thermos to the range for hot water!:eek:

HankB
August 27, 2004, 08:57 PM
Hi, StephenT.

IIRC you were part of the thread I put a link to at the beginning of this thread - glad to hear you got a nice M1 too.

According to the info here: http://oldguns.net/sn_php/mildateslookup.php your rifle was manufactured in 1944.

You have to field strip the rifle to see the numbers on the barrel - look on the right side, ahead of the receiver and just under the edge of thewooden handguard after you separate the action from the stock.

I got some Murphy's Oil Soap to wipe up the stock a little, and some "100% Pure Tung Oil" from a local woodcrafter's store . . . I remember reading "somewhere" that a lot of things you get at your local paint store or Lowe's that have "tung oil" on the label have other additives like polyurethane or some such, and probably won't give you a very "authentic" finish.

As I wrote, my rifle had some ancient 2" wide masking tape with a number written on it on both sides of the butt . . . actually several layers. That stuff has probably been on for decades, and is proving to be a real <expletive> to remove without damaging the stock. And it looks like there are some more numbers in white paint underneath the tape. (?)

As for Korean ammo, I've read the KA is corrosive, the PS is not . . . but there's supposedly a "bad batch" of PS floating around, which is splitting at the case heads. I ordered a can of LC ball ammo (280 rds on M1 clips) for $95 plus shipping today . . . not the cheapest by far, but I get the clips and the pedigree of the ammo isn't as uncertain. I have plenty of brass, so once I've wrung out the rifle with US milspec surplus, I'll be loading my own. (The '06 ammo I have on hand was loaded for my M70 - the powder I use, RL22, is a very bad choice for use in an M1.)

NEtracker
August 27, 2004, 09:29 PM
Here are the bad & good PS lots...
http://www.battlerifles.com/viewtopic.php?t=33958&highlight=korean+ammo+lots

Man-O-War
August 28, 2004, 11:47 AM
I got a SA USGI service grade a few months ago from the CMP. Cosmetically it was about what I expected. Nothing great, a few dings here and there, but the wood was solid, no cracks, etc. I cleaned it up and shot it with some old reloads I had that worked well with a previous M1 I owned. Accuracy was pretty good, probably 2 1/2 to 3 inches at 100 yds. I was pleased with this, figured I easily got my money's worth.

However, at the last gun show I went to in Houston I picked up three boxes of the Korean PS surplus just to see how it would function. I have only been able to fire one group with it so far but that 3 shot group at 50 yards can be completely covered by a nickle! This was from a bench rest of course but now I am really excited about it's accuracy potential. I am chompin' at the bit to get back to the range and shoot some more of this ammo. I have 400 more rounds on the way, so am going to put the old warhorse throught a pretty good workout and see if the accuracy holds up or if that was a fluke.

30Cal
August 28, 2004, 03:01 PM
The eagle and stars cartouche is the Defense Acceptance Stamp, which replaced the old stamps using an inspector's initials in the 1952-53 era for both new rifles and rebuilds.

A rifle is only accepted once--at the end of assembly. The DAS (or ordnace wheel and initials) was only applied on each new, completed rifle. Not on replacement stocks or rebuilt rifles.

Ty

HankB
August 28, 2004, 05:22 PM
A rifle is only accepted once--at the end of assembly. The DAS (or ordnace wheel and initials) was only applied on each new, completed rifle. Not on replacement stocks or rebuilt rifles. Hmmm . . . so if the stars over eagle cartouch is a DAS, perhaps my rifle is wearing the original stock? But it has some HRA components as well . . . interesting.

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