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the M14

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by berettaman200, Sep 9, 2010.

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  1. ElToro

    ElToro Member

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    just bought a sub 100k serial number SAI m1a for 1400 no sales tax, private party

    my socom and scout were both under 1500 and teh socom came with a few hundred rounds and the scout came with a nice bag and a custom stock bpth PPT no sales tax.

    need to shop harder my friend

    acceptable surplus ammo is out there as well. can get aussie approaching 40c and i recenlty scored some lake city ball for 50c deliverd on strippers and a ammo can.
     
  2. herkyguy

    herkyguy Member

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    if you've ever shot one with iron sights at long range, you'd understand. worth the money.
     
  3. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    There are very few civilian legal M14 rifles available and they command $15,000-$25,000 for most of them now.

    Semi auto civilian legal M1A type rifles all use modern investment cast or drop forged receivers that are extremely complicated to machine and heat treat properly.
    Quite a few receivers are scrapped in the manufacturing process and this adds to the cost.
    Bolts are also very difficult to machine and harden and again, the scrap to useable ratio adds cost to the process.

    $1500-$2000 is actually quite good at todays inflated prices considering what you are getting.

    The real bargains right now are M1 Garand rifles which can still be had for $750 or less in used condition.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2010
  4. Tirod

    Tirod Member

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    For those who want to get an M1A cheap, just build it. Buy all the parts and assemble it yourself.

    The stripped receiver is the numbered part, that has to go through a FFL. All the rest can get shipped to your door. Dozens of vendors are lined up with all the parts.

    Just like the AR. :D

    Well, maybe there is one other thing to consider, a short supply of decent guns, and high demand. All the old baby boomer shooters who cut their teeth in basic on Garands and M14's have money and buy them up for their gun case.

    You can practically build an 57 Chev or 66 Mustang with all NEW parts, too. It's not as cost effective as picking up an older used one and fixing it up.

    The CMP Garands are still a bargain - gas isn't .24.9 and five bucks won't fill the tank. I doubt very seriously you could get illegal immigrants to detassle corn for $1.35 an hour. That was an interesting two weeks.

    Look at costs based on a living wage, these guns are just as cheap now as they were then. Part of the sticker shock is realizing that life might be comfortable, but the wages we earn are really not that good after all. I had to save for months to buy a $160 semi auto in the day, and Rem 700's were too expensive. I have to save for months to buy AR 15 parts today - but I can get them.

    They were too darn expensive back then, too.
     
  5. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    As was said, the reason they're expensive is that they require a lot of machining and skilled labor to produce. Current-manfacture garands cost nearly as much, and they have the downward pressure of CMP rifles to help keep their price low.

    Mike
     
  6. boricua9mm

    boricua9mm Member

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    Contrary to some of the posts here, buying and building an M1A piece by piece WILL NOT be cheaper than buying an M1A, unless you are buying beat-to-hell parts and having it assembled shoddily.

    Building these rifles requires a lot of specific tools and know-how. It is not as simple as popping a couple of pins together. Be advised. Now, if we're talking about starting with a barreled receiver, that's another story, but that isn't much of a "build" at that point. It still won't be cheaper than a factory Springfield...
     
  7. JR47

    JR47 Member

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    I own a true M14 rifle, and I'll buy as many as you can get me for $3000 each. Last I looked, that was 10% of the current cost, if you can find one.

    I also own a Class 3 M1A that they made just before the Forearms Owners Protection Act of 1986 made it impossible to Register any more. Springfield made about 3000 of them. They also run in the $12,000-$15,000 range.

    The M14 was produced in roughly 50% of the numbers of of the M1 Garand, and are actually a goodly bit different. The receiver is sized for the 7.62x51 cartridge, not the 7.62x63. The original M14s were 100% select-fire weapons, 0% of the Garands were.

    The M14 rifle is lighter and shorter than the M1 Garand, which was both good and bad.

    Springfield currently builds guns using a cast receiver, vs. the original forged receiver of the M14. Some of the internal parts are also of current manufacture, instead of the ever-dwindling (and ever pricier) surplus parts. The M1A and M14 aren't modular, being assembled in the old way, and cost reflects that, as well.
     
  8. berettaman200

    berettaman200 Member

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    once again rules out me getting one.
     
  9. Coronach

    Coronach Moderator Emeritus

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    If you're looking for a decent M14 clone on the cheap, look around for a Polytech. They can be found for $500 if you're lucky ($800 to $1k is more common). They're more roughly finished than a M1A, and they have one common failure point- the bolt.

    The receiver is VERY high quality, made from tool steel and properly dimensioned and heat-treated. The small parts are hit or miss (more hit than miss), the barrel is fine for a rack-grade rifle (and chrome-lined!), the stock is made from some soft, dark mystery wood, but it works (and surplus M14 stocks are not expensive).

    The area of concern, as I said, is the bolt. Some of them were improperly dimensioned and soft. Those ones that are improperly dimensioned and/or soft will eventually give way to an excessive headspace situation and could cause the gun to go kablooey. The preferred way to deal with this is to have a USGI bolt fitted. Another acceptable way to deal with this is to get a set of headspace gauges and CHECK IT OFTEN (like before and after every range trip)- if it starts to change, STOP SHOOTING IT IMMEDIATELY and do the USGI bolt conversion. A third way of dealing with it is the "are you feelin' lucky?" method, and just shooting it.

    I own a Poly, and I went with option #1. I would not have felt uncomfortable with option #2. All things considered, Option #3 would probably be OK, but I prefer not to trust luck when I don't have to do so. I can vouch for the gun. It was well worth the $500 I paid for it, and after pouring another 4 bills or so (can't remember for sure) into the bolt upgrade and some other things (new stock, etc), I have a very good rack-grade M14 clone for under a grand.

    Mike
     
  10. Welding Rod

    Welding Rod Member

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    Advice of the day there.

    I wish I had 3-5 really good M1As stashed away right now rather than having gone through all the various iron I have over the years. I was probably close to 40 before buying my first. Big mistake.
     
  11. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    Yeah, my first M1A was $750 brand new, the next was $900, the next was a thousand and they kept going up from there.

    I have never seen a decent copy of the M14 type rifle go DOWN in price and that trend continues,,,
     
  12. ny32182

    ny32182 Member

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    It looks like I will be trading for an M1A Scout Squad; it will be my first M14 type rifle.

    Not sure at this point whether I will keep it for long, but what is the mag story on these? Where are the good mags, and what should be avoided?
     
  13. Bluehawk

    Bluehawk Member

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    In 1969 during Basic Training (Army) we were told..."Lose that M14 and you owe Uncle Sam $115!!!" :what:
     
  14. HOOfan_1

    HOOfan_1 Member

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    of course back then a fully tricked out Mustang cost $4,000-$5,000

    Compared to now when a tricked out Mustang GT is $38K.

    So I guess we are lucky the M1A isn't $7,000
     
  15. Bluehawk

    Bluehawk Member

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    It wouldn't be according to the inflation you just quoted...it would be in the $800-$900 range.
     
  16. navajo

    navajo Member

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    why

    I have owned 7 M-1A types. First one was $485.00 retail. One had a Chinese receiver with the rest being US parts.
    In all the years, and many thousands or rounds, not one malfunction of any kind. Not one. Hand loads, factory or surplus, not one malfunction.
    Still think they cost too much?
    Its the only semi auto rifle I completely trust.

    As for mags, GI if you can find them. Otherwise Checkmate Industries is the current supplier to the US govt. Can't go wrong with them.
     
  17. Z-Michigan

    Z-Michigan Member

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    The mags you want are US-made, USGI mags. 44mag.com has new USGI mags by CMI (current GI contractor) for $27. Those are top quality, and identical to the Springfield Armory-branded mag.

    Other mags that work in my experience are Taiwan T57 mags, available from keepshooting.com, and the Korean knock-off mags that came out in the last two years, sporadically available from various places like AIM, CDNN, etc.

    Anything else is iffy. I would avoid Chinese mags or non-USGI US mags (like Promag and USA Mag).
     
  18. Hangingrock

    Hangingrock Member

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    The M1A as produced by Springfield Armory (The Commercial Entity) is no M14. It is and never going to be a M14.

    Of the four manufactures Springfield (U.S. Govt. Arsenal), Winchester, H&R, and TRW two of the commercial producers were problematic sources. Winchester manufacturing capacity was severely hampered by antiquated machinery and production procedures. H&R had quality issues. Example H&R rifles issued to the Marine Corps had to have the bolts replaced due to lax inspection/quality control/material issues. TRW (a non firearms producer) produced the best quality rifles and parts of the four producers.

    I’ve owned two Springfield M1A rifles (one basic and one Super Match).

    Is the M14 rifle difficult to produce with the manufacturing capability and technics in the year of 2010? No it is not. Is it cost effective compared to other designs? The short answer no.

    With the experience of a combat tour in Vietnam as a M14 (Winchester) equipped Marine the rifle has a special place in my thoughts. The M1A and clones are simply not M14 rifles. Their just pretenders.

    USMC 1964-1968 Sgt-E5
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2010
  19. HOOfan_1

    HOOfan_1 Member

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    me fail math? That's unpossible

    I was originally thinking the Stang cost 2500 in 69, until I looked it up and saw the fully tricked out Mach 1 was more like 4K. Then I was comparing it to the 60K Shelby Mustang. So I was originally thinking more like $3K for the M14. Then I added in all the extra tax the government gun haters add on....or I just can't multiply well....
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2010
  20. Hatterasguy

    Hatterasguy Member

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    Proper old school battle rifles like the Garand, M14, FN49, SIG510 etc cost a fortune to make. That was one of the reasons they were phased out.

    Buying one now isn't cheap, if you can't afford an M14 get an FN49 they are just as good.

    But don't just look at the initial cost, look at it as an investment. These rifles were made to last a generation or more, if you keep them up you can pass them down to your kids.
     
  21. mljdeckard

    mljdeckard Member

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    I bought one, and it didn't agree with me very much, but I would never say it was overpriced. It's a solid rifle like you seldom see anymore.
     
  22. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    I've got a gorgeous FAL that theoretically is everything the M1A is and more. Yet, I'd swap it for an M1A (and some cash to boot) without a thought. The M1A/M14 appeals to me on an aesthetic level that is difficult to explain. The FAL functions as well as an M1A, but it just doesn't have the same mystique.

    I want one. Someday I'll get one.

    G1.jpg
     
  23. Z-Michigan

    Z-Michigan Member

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    Kodiak-

    that's one of the most beautiful FALs I've seen. Is the wood furniture original military or from Ironwood Designs?

    I own and shoot both the FAL and M1A. I love both, and anyone who can afford it should have both. If you can only afford one, I'd flip a coin. The M1A has a classic feel and is terrific for iron sight use. The FAL has better ergonomics than almost any other rifle I can think of, a design that is both reliable and very easy to service, and durability that is AFAIK unmatched by ANY other semiauto (receiver life of 80,000 rounds with the FN forged receivers, and probably even more with a DSA forged receiver since DSA is using better steel). Both can be scoped acceptably and neither takes a scope perfectly. The M1A has potentially better accuracy but requires a whole lot of finicking to get there.
     
  24. Bluehawk

    Bluehawk Member

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    At just over $100 for an M14 as sold to the U.S. Army, I wouldn't consider that a fortune. Considering there is a profit in there somewhere, how can anyone even make that statement??
     
  25. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

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    That's original Belgian walnut furniture. The trick is to take that old wood you get in the kits and soak it in water for a few days, then roll it in dry detergent powder (All, Cheer, whatever) until it dries. It'll suck all that old oil out of the wood. Repeat until the wood is free of old oil, then sand and put multiple thin coats of Tung or Linseed oil on it.
     
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