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Universal M1 Carbine questions.

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by TechGuy, Jun 13, 2005.

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  1. TechGuy

    TechGuy Member

    Jun 13, 2005
    Cleveland, TN
    My father has a M1 carbine, when I was looking at it it said "Universal Cal. 30 M1". Does anyone have any info on these? Can they use USGI parts? What years did universal produce these? My father and I have shot well over 1000 rounds through this gun, if and when something breaks how hard is it to find replacement parts? Any other info is welcome.

    Here is a picture.

    Attached Files:

  2. thatguy

    thatguy Member

    Apr 10, 2004
    I think Universal was based in Hialeah, FL. Many shooters disdain this gun and I hear from some who have had problems with theirs. I have one that works just fine. It takes milsurp mags but I don't know about other parts fitting.
  3. VTKFJoe

    VTKFJoe Member

    Mar 10, 2004
    From what I understand they take some USGI parts but not others. Also, I have heard that some are closer to USGI than others (variations through the years of production).

    I had one that loved to stovepipe and I sold it back to the guy that I bought it from. OTOH, I have a friend who had one and loved it.

    BTW, I was able to use the 30 rnd mag only when I replaced the follower with one from a 15 rnd mag - it still stovepiped (with 15s and 30s)but not as much.

    Good luck.
  4. longrifleman

    longrifleman Member

    Feb 11, 2004
    western Missouri
    I have one that my dad bought in about 65 to 68. It hasn't been shot a lot but has never given any problems with ball ammo. I did some handloading for it back when (don't ask why-I don't know why) and some bullet shapes could give feeding problems. Some of the parts seem to be surplus on a new reciever but I haven't tried to check them against actual GI spec.

    I know a few other folks who have had these and they are usually decent shooters with the occasional lemon. The lemons seem to be VERY lemony. If you have a good one enjoy it.

    I've heard that the springs all interchange with GI but this is mostly an unconfirmed rumor. YMMV.
  5. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

    May 10, 2005
    Kingsport Tennessee
    Universal M1

    The Universal M1 was made to cash in on the popularity of
    the M1 carbine in 1950s and 60s. The operating slide is a heavy
    stamping with an open cut for the bolt lug; the gun has two recoil
    springs instead of one for the GI version. Most ones I saw had screw
    holes for a scope side mount on the left of the receiver. Sears
    carried them for a while. They were different.

    Most stock makers make different stocks for the US GI M1 and
    the Universal M1. Volunteer Arms Knoxville made tommy-gun
    look-alike stocks for the M1 carbine and their literature says
    the stock will fit the US GI M1 and the Plainfield M1 but NOT the
    Universal M1. (Volunteer Commando I had a fixed Thompson wood
    butt; Commando II had no butt; Commando IV had a detachable butt;
    Commando I II and IV were actually just stocks for M1 carbines.
    Commando III and V were sheetmetal .45 tommy-gun replicas)

    Universal M1s seem to be a fair value for the price, but are not
    standard GI M1 and parts could get iffy, as Universal is out of
  6. Ala Dan

    Ala Dan Member in memoriam

    Dec 24, 2002
    Home Of The First Capitol Of The Confederate State
    I had a Universal M-1 Carbine back in the early 70's. Shooting military
    surplus (ball type) ammo this weapon NEVER gave me a problem of any
    kind. I can't address the issue as to whether or not G.I. parts will inter-
    change? Best I can remember, I gave only $110 U.S. dollars for mine NIB.
  7. bmwguy

    bmwguy Member

    Jan 6, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    From what I've read.

    The early made Universal carbine were closer to USGI, it has the 1 recoil spring and were less problematic. They usually have the wooden handguard as well.

    The later made ones from universal were more problematic. These comes with 2 recoil springs, had the metal handguard. I had one of the later ones and I personally vouch that it didn't jam much, however, after around 400 rounds. The hammer started showing indentation from hitting the firing pin. This is fairly common.
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