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Garand or M1A?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Jmurman, Jun 3, 2003.

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  1. Jmurman

    Jmurman Member

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    I am trying to decide between the two. It will be my only rifle of this type. Any comments?
     
  2. stellarpod

    stellarpod Member

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    It may be your first, but I seriously doubt it will be your last! :D

    I'd go with the Garand. The history behind this weapon just gives it more appeal in my opinion. And I promise it will garner more nosalgic smiles from the older crowd when your at the range.

    M1A's are nice too. I just prefer the Garand.

    Oh, and you can pick one up for a heckuva lot less than the M1A.

    stellarpod
     
  3. shermacman

    shermacman Member

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    Fired 'em both, love 'em both. The Garand of course is a military classic. I find a strong sense of history and pride just looking at one. But I have to admit that if I were looking for a SHTF rifle the M1A out performs the Garand in almost every area. Although I have never been bitten by the M1 thumb, loading a Garand is a project compared to the M1A. For nostalgia: Garand. For fire power: M1A. For love of firearms: get a second job so you can get both!
     
  4. Daryl

    Daryl Member

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    I have both and if I had to give one up, it would be the M1A. There is just something special about the Garand.
     
  5. FPrice

    FPrice Member

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    This comes up every now and then, which rifle to buy.

    My advice is generally to buy the Garand first because they just seem to be getting rarer and more expensive every day. At least the military versions are and those are the only ones I would consider.

    However, a more practical suggestion is to get whichever one offers itself up first to you. I have a sneaking suspicion that you will eventually want and will get one of the other also. It just seems to happen that way.
     
  6. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Jmurman,

    For reasons already stated, go with the M1.... Accurate, hard hitting, long ranged. rugged.

    What more do you need???


    shermacman wrote:


    Truly a matter for debate here..... ;)

    I own and shoot both Garands and M1-A's. Both are great weapons. BUT.....

    The Garand is much easier to get into a good low prone position. No awkward mag sticking down. Better concealment, better cover.

    Also the reloading issue. Once you have the process down, you can reload a Garand in MUCH less time than an M1-A.

    The process of picking up a clip and inserting it in the magwell of an M1 is faster than the M1-A, where you FIRST have to grab & remove the empty mag, drop it or set it down, then go for the new one, being careful to rock it properly into place till it locks, then pulling the oprod handle back to release the bolt.

    Both systems can be learned to a fine "tee".... but because it "self empties" and then "self closes", the Garand is naturally faster to reload.

    I choose to (mostly) shoot NRA Highpower with a Garand instead of the newer M1-A or AR15 types (fully Match upgraded, of course). My reload time is LESS than half that of the M1-A shooters I share the firing line with.

    I read a very long report on the Garand in the "GUNS Combat 2000 annual isse". The author, Chuck Karwan, well familiar with both weapons and a Viet Nam vet who carried the M14 in numerous jungle firefights, decided to do a "sustained rate of fire test" between the Garand and M14 types.

    He had himself timed as he fired and reloaded both weapons several times.

    Making a computer model with his average reload times.... he found that the Garand could stay with the M14 (M1-A) virtually shot for shot over the long haul, simply because it relaods so much faster.

    Having said all this, I'd have to admit that I'd be hard pressed to make a choice between the two in a true SHTF scenario....... But if I suddenly found myself needing firepower and the only thing available was a Garand, the only thing I'd feel sorry for was whoever it was that made me go for a rifle in the first place.

    Can you say, "What's cover against .223 is only concealment against 30-06"?? :)

    Best regards,
    Swampy
     
  7. Monte Harrison

    Monte Harrison Member

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    Garand. You know you really want one.

    This is the rifle grampa carried in the Big One. For history and pride of ownership, gotta go with the Garand. And here is where you have to get it from:
    http://www.odcmp.com/Services/Rifles/m1garand.htm

    m1_small.jpg
     
  8. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Moderator Emeritus

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    Over the course of one or two mags the Garand DOES have a faster reload speed. However, consider a situation that the CMP NTIT (Rattle Battle) simulates, lots of bad guys, lots of ammo, little time. Try firing 30 ACCURATE rounds out of a Garand in 50 seconds on a man sized sillhouette at 600 yards. The 20 round box has its advantages in some situations.

    A low prone position may be obtained with the M1A.
     
  9. shermacman

    shermacman Member

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    Swampy, when I was talking reloading time I did not mean pre-loading! Having a dozen pre-loaded M1 clips all set up nice and neat in the comfort of a suburban home is one thing. Rummaging through a box and loading a clip in the field is another. Maybe it is just me, but I just can't get the hang of banging .30/06 rounds into the butt end of the Garand so they line up all nice and neat with bad guys firing over my head. (Which happens all the time :rolleyes:) Also imagine firing three shots from a run, dropping low for cover and wanting to refill the clip...not easy. Your point about low prone position is right on the money. Funny thing is, everytime I get a chance to fire a rifle my order of preference is always M16 if I have to, M1A OK and Garand any time I can!
     
  10. Handy

    Handy Guest

    One issue I'd research first is the availability of good parts. While the M1A is still being produced, an awful lot of the internal parts are cheaply made and causing problems lately. I would not be surprised to find that GI spec parts for the Garand are actually more common.

    Once you add up the costs of having the reliable parts and several quality GI mags, you might be scared off the M1A by total price.

    My top choices for a gun of this type would be either a dirt cheap Danish Garand for $400 from the CMP, and a .308 rebarrel, or this $995 US/Chinese part Armscorp M14 rifle from Sarco:

    http://www.sarcoinc.com/r285.html

    Both seem like solid platforms to upgrade as necessary for what you decide to do with the gun.

    If you want a match rifle, there are a number of good places that will sell you $2000 worth of either design.
     
  11. uglymofo

    uglymofo Member

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    accuracy vs. dollars

    You haven't mentioned your requirements. Garands are classic, 'accurate', and cheap(er) than M1A's. Mags for M1A's can be had for as little as ~$35 (from Coles), but that's still way more expensive than the Garand's.

    However, if accuracy is important, "out of the box" CMP's will group anywhere from 2" - 5" at 100yd. For about $500. Some 'smiths can tweak an M1A for about another $1000 to get 1" groups.

    A Springfield Armory M1A rack grade will shoot 3-4" for ~$1000. There are about 4 levels of Springfields, each getting better for more money. The top of their line is the Super Match, which you can find NIB preban from private parties for ~$1700. These'll shoot 1/2 MOA groups with reloads (3/4 MOA with Federal Gold Medal). (There are higher priced Springfields, but they won't shoot any better.) Fulton Armory offers the same grades for about the same monies, but finding private party sales is harder.

    Lastly, reloading costs will be less with the M1A as it uses fractionally less powder.

    This is not true....I've been able to resist buying an M1 for years:) Heretic! Heretic!
     
  12. dude

    dude Member

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    my .308 Garand ran about $850 after the barrel swap and tuning............it is now my favorite&most shot rifle of the collection.

    I started with a CAI, used it's 'new' reciever, nice SA internal parts and cool beater but good wood.
     
  13. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    shermacman wrote:


    Hey guy, who goes into the field with only ONE loaded clip??? :D You should have at least a dozen loaded clips in a bando or on a belt along with the rifle.... ready to slap in at the first "PING" !!!

    Would you be caught in the field with only ONE loaded 20 round mag for an M1-A???? Or would you carry a belt with some pre-loaded mags ready to rock???

    Nobody goes into the field with all of their "ready ammo" already in the rifle..... at least nobody in their right mind ;)

    Load those clips & mags at HOME, before you go out to make noise, or into a situation where you might potentially need to "shoot back" at some two legged vermin....

    Also..... magazine prices.
    M1-A mags..... $35 and up.
    Garand clips.... $1 or less. You can buy M1 clips for .50 or .60 cents each in bulk lots of 40 or 50. Load up and have ready to fire an entire GI CAN of ammo for the price of ONE M14 magazine.

    Best regards,
    Swampy
     
  14. Bostonterrier97

    Bostonterrier97 Member

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    M1 Garand

    Pros: Stronger Reciever
    more powerful
    has a lower shooter profile when prone
    Faster to reload an En Bloc Clip than a 20 round Mag on the M1A
    En Bloc clips are cheaper than M14 Mags
    Longer sight radius.
     
  15. mohican

    mohican Member

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    If you want to use a scope, a M1a may be a little easier. That being said, I have 200-300 yard groundhog and stray cat kills with my Garand with BSQUARE side mount.
     
  16. Dizos

    Dizos Member

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    ? With the M14 you get 20 shots before having to reload Is the Garand really 2 1/2 times faster to reload? Having an uninterupted stream of 20 rounds would be major tactical advantage too. I also personally prefer the .308 round. I would take a M1A over a Garand.

    -- Jeff
     
  17. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Dizos wrote:


    YES !!!..... for the reasons stated above.

    A LOT fewer hand motions required to accomplish the mission = less time.

    BTW, I shoot a Garand chambered in .308 in Highpower competition, where a faster reload can make the difference in getting all 10 of your Rapid Fire rounds off or in watching the target drop into the pits after the 9th shot....... :( In a typical 80 round Match you have four 10 round Rapid Fire strings where you must do a reload. Being slow is not an option....

    Having competed in Highpower with all three of our US Service Rifles... Garand, M14 (M1-A), and M16 (AR-15), I can quite easily make the conclusion that the Garand is by far the fastest to reload, the M14 is the slowest. The M16 falls somewhere in the middle.

    As an aside..... I'm also having a Garand made up as a "plinker" in .308 so's I can blast with cheap Nato Milsurp. :D

    Just more of my ramblings,

    Swampy
     
  18. Jmurman

    Jmurman Member

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    how do you get a Garand set up for 308?
     
  19. aerod1

    aerod1 Member

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    I have both and the thought of giving either one up brings me to tears.
    Buy the Garand now, and you WILL buy the M1A later...trust me.
    And then of course you must consider an M1 carbine.....trust me.
    You will be forever addicted and once again you can......trust me.

    Jim Hall
     
  20. FPrice

    FPrice Member

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    Jmurman...

    "how do you get a Garand set up for 308?"

    Two ways.

    1. Get a .308 insert which goes into the chamber, will only allow .308 ammunition to be chambered and fired.

    2. Have the rifle re-barreled to a .308 barrel with the appropriately-sized chamber.

    I think that the latter is considered to be the best method, although much more permanent.
     
  21. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Jmurman wrote:

    Hey guy.... Check out the thread next door, in this same forum, entitiled "WHAT TO DO WITH A SHOT OUT BARREL".

    It addresses this very issue in some considerable detail.

    Best regards,
    Swampy
     
  22. M1911

    M1911 Member

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    Get them both. Seriously, I doubt you'll stop after you've gotten one of them.

    Of the two, I'd say that the M1A will be more accurate and lighter. I like the fact that the Garand doesn't have the protruding (and expensive) magazine that gets caught on stuff. Surplus .308 is easier to find than surplus M2 ball.
     
  23. foghornl

    foghornl Member

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    Mil-Surps are absolutely addicting.....About 5000x more than the various "recreational pharmaceuticals".

    But to stay with the thread....Buy the US Rifle Cal .30 M-1, popularly known as 'The Garand' FIRST.

    I bought an International Harvester made 1955 vintage M-1 first.
    Then, since I wanted something from "the other side", I bought a Mosin-Nagant M-44 carbine (1954 Romanian made). And I have a Springfield 1911-A1. Since I probably can't buy a Gewehr 43, I'll need some sort of Mauser, and a Japanese Arisaka, and a Swiss K-31, one of the Italian Carcano turnbolts and a Kalishnikov of some sort. . . . . .
     
  24. Fatelvis

    Fatelvis Member

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    Although I own, and enjoy shooting both, the M1As ability to carry AT LEAST 250% more ammo, and the ability to top off the magazine, gives it a big advantage over the Garand. You might be able to reload a split second faster for a Garand, but you`ll have to reload more often. Under the stress of combat, your motor skills go down the toilet, making reloading ALOT more difficult than at the range. Not being as concerned about a reload, frees your mind a bit, to concentrate on target aquisition. This, in my opinion, makes the M14 a superior battle rifle.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2003
  25. dude

    dude Member

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    JFTR- I have never even though about 'rapid' firing my .308 Garand..................... nor attempted to RAMBO reload
     
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