AO M1 Carbine experience

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Phrog Driver, Aug 30, 2021.

  1. Phrog Driver

    Phrog Driver Member

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    Bought this little guy last winter as a tax return prezzie to myself. Read all the reviews. Watched all the vids, good and bad. Finally got to take it on a road trip and validate. I am here to tell you, the reviews are all correct, both good and bad. At this point I finally have a run of several hundred rounds through it without any failures, but it was a voyage of discovery getting here. In the beginning, it had a feed failure every other round, or would not fully go into battery or soft strike the primer. I honestly thought I had bought a piece of junk. Thankfully I was in a place (Idaho) where I could go shoot it every day and try some things out.

    My host was a renowned mechanic, and he gave me some advice, not to mention having a vintage Postal Meter version so we could do side by sides whenever necessary. I talked to a couple old Marines, one an infantry Master Guns, another a pretty spry 90 year old Korea vet. They both told me the carbine likes it, as the Korean vet put it, "wet and sloppy". So, while we were sitting around drinking beer and enjoying the Idaho sky, did some light honing, bolt rails, feed ramp, etc. And juiced it up with Bore Butter. And kept shooting it, until that happy day when I machine gunned two 30 round mags through it without a fail.

    On the good side, its real accurate at 50 yards, we were blasting bottles hanging in a tree, fun on a stick. Have not had it out to 100 or more, but that's coming. Just added an adjustable rear sight from Kahr. All the ammo I put through it was Korean surplus, and the mags were either AO or Korean, so that has been a constant. Anyhow, just thought I would pass this all on. These things have gotten some bad press, well deserved in some cases. But if you have the time and some expert advice, you can work through them. Cleaning it is more of an oil change than a cleaning, but that's OK. I also think the Parkerizing process leaves some rough edges in the action that need to be worn off. Not quite ready to trust it with home defense or truck gun duty yet, but I think we'll get there if the current trend holds. Pics of the rear sight install for your enjoyment. Master Guns had the right tool for that. AO adjustable sight 1.jpg AO adjustable sight 2.jpg AO adjustable sight 3.jpg AO adjustable sight 4.jpg Auto Ordnance M1 Carbine 3.jpg
     
  2. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    You shouldn't have had to do all that. I've read enough bad about the AO's to really sour them to me. They aren't truly milspec, and many GI parts won't drop in. Hope yours gives good service.
     
  3. loose noose

    loose noose Member

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    Sorry I have to agree with JCooperfan1911, nothing should have been done to that M-1 Carbine other than replacing the bolt return spring, further I never mix alcohol with gun powder, nor do I shoot glass bottles, due to the damage they can do to tires and feet. Other than that enjoy shooting your relic.
     
  4. Phrog Driver

    Phrog Driver Member

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    Well, sorry to disappoint, thought it'd be a fun tale. By the way, we don't drink and shoot, or drive, or anything else but sit on the porch and have a beer while cleaning. Didn't mean to give the impression otherwise. And we clean up our targets, and other peoples' too. Sometimes whole pickup loads.
     
  5. lionking

    lionking Member

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    I have barely used mine I got earlier this year because summer came up and ammo prices but so far it has been ok, I'll be testing it more when summer ends. So far my groups have been typical at 100 yards compared to a genuine Inland I have and Universal I use to have.
     
  6. 35 Whelen
    • Contributing Member

    35 Whelen Contributing Member

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    That's a great write-up, thanks for your candor.

    I think the current reproductions are built to tighter tolerances, that is they're "less sloppy" than original USGI examples. As such, they probably require a bit of breaking in. The up-side is they'll probably last longer. I currently own too many M1 Carbine's (Ten!!) and two of them are commercial examples; a 1st Generation Universal and an Iver Johnson. These two are quite a bit more accurate than my original M1's, I assume due to better barrels, etc.

    Also, it's not uncommon, when I post a photo of a target I shot with one of my carbine's, to see a beer can on the target stand.

    JlRz4yJl.jpg

    Yep, my way of winding down is having a beer and flinging a few bullets from my carbine at my 200 yd. steel.

    35W
     
  7. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    Nice review Phrog Driver.

    I have an AO paratrooper model that shoots fairly well. It has been getting better the more rounds that I put through it.

    I got the AO paratrooper figuring I could not afford a GI issue version and it is a good addition to my standard GI issue carbines.

    The metal stock is not comfortable to shoot.
     
    JT-AR-MG42 likes this.
  8. eastbank

    eastbank Member

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    a good friend just bought a very early AO that i think is all GI for 700.00, i gave him several magizines and 50 rounds of m1 carbine ammo to run thru it. he said it ran all 50 rounds with out a FTF-FTE. however i have seen a few AO,s that were pretty bad, metal hand guard-op rod bent-poor wood fit-ect. they are good rifles,untill their not.
     
  9. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    I recently obtained a Fulton.

    300 rounds, no hickups. Great accuracy and all milspec using about half originals.

    The AO was tempting due to the price, but with carbines you get what you pay for.
     
  10. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    I have an AO that was made after Kahr's acquisition. It's both pretty and accurate. Unfortunately, it was not "pretty reliable" in the beginning as I would experience a failure to fully seat into battery approximately once every 30 rounds. A trip back to the factory to make use of the warranty and it was shipped back shortly after saying the chamber was out of spec and repaired. It's been 100% reliable since.
    I think I paid $700 after taxes (back in 2013 I believe).

    51416819286_0250b98d1b_z.jpg
     

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    JT-AR-MG42 likes this.
  11. amd6547

    amd6547 Member

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    I bought a used AO carbine just before the plandemic. The price was right, and I wanted to retire my GI carbine from practical use. I put about 100rds through it with no issues, other than one. The front band spring allowed the band to slide forward enough under recoil that the handguard came off.
    I noticed that the retaining hook on the band spring was a little rounded, so I squared it off with a Dremel tool and made a definite hook. Then I gave it a little bend outward…Now it holds tight, no more problem.
    Overall, it fills the role I wanted…low cost knock around, self defense carbine.
     
    35 Whelen likes this.
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