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Garand-specific ammo, new

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by strat81, Aug 14, 2007.

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  1. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    I've submitted an order for a Garand from the CMP so I've been reading up on them lately. One thing I've learned is that most (not all) commercial ammo is a no-go for the Garand, especially modern hunting loads. Something about pressures, burn rates of powders, and bent op rods. Bad stuff can happen.

    So, most folks recommend shooting surplus M2 ball in Garands, such as what's available from the CMP. Great, it's cheap and plentiful right now climbing and supplies are slowly dwindling (i.e., no more LC).

    Does anyone make Garand-specific ammo? I'm talking about something designed specifically for the Garand... everything from FMJ, OTM, and SP bullets. I figured if anyone did, it would be Black Hills, but they're website lists no such thing. I suppose such ammo could also be used in 1903 Springfields too in case the owner did not want to subject the rifle to higher powered ammo (even though 1903s are generally strong enough for modern stuff).

    I'm not sure how much of a market exists for such ammo since I'd wager that many Garand owners reload and thus can roll their own. Those that don't are probably happy with old surplus.
     
  2. BsChoy

    BsChoy Member

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    My thought is somebody will have to when all the greek and LC stuff runs out. At least for the masses of owners who do not reload.
     
  3. General Geoff

    General Geoff Member

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    If it becomes a big problem with sourcing light .30-06 for Garand consumption, it would perhaps be easier to procure an adjustable gas valve for your Garand, and adjust it for consumption with hotter modern commercial loads.

    The rifle itself is plenty strong for it; if you adjust the gas system for proper cycling with the slightly higher pressures of newer loads, you're golden.
     
  4. Neo-Luddite

    Neo-Luddite Member

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    See, I didn't know about the ammo problem. I've had a Garand for 15 years, finally got a super-nice late 1955/6 production last year (gaged like brand new) and stupid me fed my new M-1 80 rounds of Win 150gr silver tip as I thought it would be nicer on the bore for 'break in'.
    So, what are the odds I jazzed by formerly cherry gas system if I go and sin no more?
     
  5. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    Neo, I am not a gunsmith. But, after reading the reloading forum here, the main issues would be with the op-rod and related recoil spring. If the rod is not damaged, you should be ok. You might want to replace the recoil spring.

    However, since you only fired relatively few rounds and not 2 cases, you should be fine. I don't know how hot that load is anyway. Is the rifle behaving normally?

    General, you make a good point about adjustable valves. However, I'd bet that people people who don't reload already are more likely to buy commercial "Garand ammo" than tinker with their rifles. Speculation on my part, of course.
     
  6. General Geoff

    General Geoff Member

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    Neo-Luddite,

    If it was 150gr stuff, you probably didn't do any damage. The problems arise when you use heavier stuff (200gr+).
     
  7. davera

    davera Member

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    Neo-Luddite -
    If nothing got bent or broken you are probably OK. I fired probably 60 or so rounds of the green box Remington 150gr with no apparent ill effects. But I have the adjustable valve now and can shoot anything from the CMP Greek surplus to any commercial load.

    Get one.
     
  8. Neo-Luddite

    Neo-Luddite Member

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    Thanks guys--rifle seems fine--has an odd habit in that the bolt closes without needing the characteristic tap on the op rod handle when clip is pushed down--not sure if later ones were supposed to do that or not--it is really very much stiff and new feeling. My old and worn one is the one that gets grabbed out all the time--it has only eaten a diet of Tallon re-rebuilt ammo since it was re-gassed by SA Genesseo 6 or 7 years ago (and the greek stuff of late.

    I really want another since cmp has them again.
     
  9. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Sorry, but, NOT true.... Powder burn rate is just as important as is bullet weight. They BOTH have a significant effect on the tail of the pressure curve, where the bullet passes the gas port on the M1 rifle.

    Commercial 150 grain loads are just as likely to have powder with a burn rate that leaves gas port pressure well above the M1 gas systems design spec as is the heavier bullet loads.

    Back in the 1950's, when the M1 rifle was first being made available for civilian Highpower shooters, the techies of Springfield Armory (The REAL one.) gave the following "M1 gas system safe" ammo rules to the NRA to pass along to civilian shooters.

    1) NEVER shoot bullets HEAVIER than 180 grains
    2) NEVER shoot powder that is SLOWER than IMR-4320

    While it is very easy to stay in spec with commercial ammo on Rule 1, the problem is with the powder burn rate. Bullet weight is listed on the box.... powder burn rate is not... and indeed is variable from lot to lot as commercial ammo loaders don't use cannister grade powder like we handloaders do. They use commercial bulk lot powder that varies a significant amount from lot to lot. Charge weights are adjusted to give the published velocity of the round currently being made.

    Also, most commercial ammo makers don't load their ammo with the M1's pressure specific gas system in mind. It's easier to achieve higher velocities from slower burning powders, and since the more common turnbolt rifles that "Joe Hunter" shoots don't care about powder pressure curves, that's what they tend to use.

    Also too, remember that metal fatigue is a CUMULATIVE process. You may be fine after firing "X" number of rounds of some over-pressured commercial ammo in your M1..... How many more rounds it takes before reaching the point that damage appears is anybody's guess. At that point.... I hope you have a spare op-rod.

    Pretty normal for the vast majority of M1's to require you to "Do da' bump" to chamber the first round. Well worn in rifles tend to want to close on their own more often. No biggie in any case..... Simply a benign little bug that was never worked out of the design.

    Best to all,
    swampy

    Garands forever
     
  10. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Member

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    Discussions like this make me wonder if I should sell one of mine and buy 2 or 3 more cases of ammo. :)
     
  11. USSR

    USSR Member

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    Swampy,

    Looks like you're gonna be busy for awhile. Posts from people who either don't know, don't believe, or don't care about the port pressure concerns of the Garand are popping up all over the place.:)

    Don
     
  12. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Saving M1 op-rods........

    It's a Crusade. :p

    Best,
    Swampy

    Garands forever
     
  13. BobTheTomato

    BobTheTomato Member

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    I think back before they got all the greek HXP CMP did get some commercial ammo made for the M1. When they run out in a few years I bet someone will fill that niche market.
     
  14. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    Probably.... but I'll bet dollars to donut holes that it won't be selling for a quarter a round like the HXP is right now.

    Best,
    Swampy

    Garands forever
     
  15. Dave in PA

    Dave in PA Member

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    Hey now, you guys all know that the Greek HXP is nasty no good stuff. Just kidding. I mean, it was thought that the CMP had several years worth of LC ammo and 10+ years of HXP. Now, the LC is gone and the time frame of HXP supply is down to 3-4 years. I am resigning myself to only order 1 case per month. I can't reload for much less than what the HXP is now.

    Does anybody know if there is any new manufacturers of Op rods or are we still consuming the worlds' supply?
     
  16. Swampy

    Swampy Member

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    I've heard there is a company out there that has stated in a private e-mail, "we will try".... but that's a far cry from actually having the process down and in spec rods available.

    Best,
    Swampy

    Garands forever
     
  17. Samuraigg

    Samuraigg Member

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    Yeah by that time I need to be into reloading. I don't think the prices of specialty Garand ammunition is going to be pretty...
     
  18. redneckdan

    redneckdan Member

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    150ish a pop to replace them, yer savin people some serious coin
     
  19. GarandOwner

    GarandOwner Member

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    Rather than what "doesnt work" its easier to say what does work. Stick with PMC (whats left out there) Mil-surplus, federal american eagle, remington UMC. Hunting loads, especially the ones that brag about power you should stay away from.
     
  20. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    Priced this out real quick:
    From Midway:
    Remington .30-06 Brass, 5000, $1,294.95

    From Powder Valley:
    IMR 4895, 47.5gr, 40 pounds, $557.50
    Hornady .30 cal 150gr FMJBT, 6000, $666.69
    CCI LR Primers, 5000, $92.50

    Batch Cost Per 20: $9.66 (excluding shipping, taxes, hazmat, etc)
    Batch costs decreases significantly if you reload the brass and/or buy 1x fired brass.

    American Eagle 150gr .30-06 is a commercial load many Garand users have claimed is safe for the M1. Prices:
    Natchez: $12.26
    Wideners: $12.00
    Cheaper Than Dirt: $13.60
    Sportsman's Guide: $13.47
    Midway: $13.99

    Thoughts? Comments?
     
  21. GarandOwner

    GarandOwner Member

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    The thing I like about reloading is that it gives me something gun related to do other than going out to the range to "get my fix" also it allows me to tweak rounds for better accuracy. Also when I take a batch of my "homegrown" ammo, I take more time for each shot. Decreasing how much I spend out at the range. Its alot easier to blast off a bunch of rounds if I didnt invest time making them :D
     
  22. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Member

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    I find myself firing slower and slower at the range. Maybe I am getting old. If I shoot more than a 100 rounds with one rifle, it is a lot.
     
  23. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    Yeah, but then how would I find out that one of my AK mags misfeeds while I bumpfire when there's 3 rounds left? :)
     
  24. USSR

    USSR Member

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    There are alot of ways to cut your costs. Once-fired LC brass is available if you look around, as is pulldown milsurp bullets. I can load .30-06 for about $.15 per round, not counting the cost of the brass (once-fired @ $.10 each), which is reuseable.

    Don
     
  25. Run&Shoot

    Run&Shoot Member

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    Even cheaper reloading is to reuse the brass cases. Instead of buying 5000 get 1000. You should easily get five reloads out of a case. So your $1,300 for brass would be more like $260 or less if you get the used LC brass.

    No matter which cartridge I run the numbers on I can almost always reload for half the cost of the Eagle or UMC. Even in .223. That;s been true for the last 20 years I have hand loaded and worked out again just this week.
     
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