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Seeking advice on CMP for an M1 Garand


C.N. Double
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Howdy,

 

I'm toying with the idea of toting an M1 Garand to the next GAMM I can find (thanks to the fine folks in TX and OK), and CMP still has some service-grade rifles for sale.

 

I understand the requirements for buying from the CMP, but I guess I'm just looking for any advice on purchasing from the CMP and if a service-grade rifle (muzzle 3 or less and throat less than 5) is worth getting if I want to actually shoot the thing. They do have special grade rifles as well (new wood and barrel) -- do you think that would be worth nearly double the price considering I want to shoot it and I'm less concerned about original parts?

 

It seems pretty straightforward to me, but I'd be interested to hear if this is a good idea or not. If not, what are some alternatives besides browsing GB?

 

http://thecmp.org/cmp_sales/rifle_sales/m1-garand/

 

Thanks in advance!

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Howdy C.N.D, I think you will be happy with a service grade rifle. These are nice guns. Cmp seems to be very conservative on descriptions and bore wear. Usually they are better than described. It’s just that leap of faith that has to be taken because they are picking it out and sending it to you.  Both mine came from cmp I think my best one was a special service grade and it came in with an LMR barrel and mostly all matching with new wood. The rifle I had at state is a field grade rifle and it’s a good solid rifle but not near as nice the other.
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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, I may have won the CMP lottery today. My M1 arrived, and the condition card (service-grade) indicates a ME of 0 and TE of 1. The wood is pretty banged up -- all good news for a rifle I plan to shoot. The serial number indicates it was built in May, 1945.

 

All in all, a very pleasant and easy experience with the CMP, and the mandatory membership with the Garand Collector's Association is a good deal too.

 

I think I'm going to need a lot of ammo... ;D

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Don't get anxious and shoot normal .30-06 factory ammo through your Garand.  Find the lower velocity "M2" type ammo that makes about 45,000 psi and launches a 150 (or up to 168 grain jacketed bullet) at about 2720 FPS (more like 2600 for the heavier bullet there).

 

Federal produces a nice Garand level load, as does Priv Partisan and Creedmoor Ammo (available through CMP web site shipped right to your door).

http://bulletin.accurateshooter.com/2009/05/federal-introduces-affordable-m1-garand-ammo/

 

Shooting full current power level factory ammo (without having the gas capture system modified) will quickly bend the operating rod.

 

 

But, you have a good range of lead bullet loads that will be safe in your new gun!

 

Good luck, GJ

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Thanks, GJ! I have some mil-spec .30-06 made by the Belgian company Fabrique Nationale Herstal (headstamp reads ".30 80 FNB"). I've read that it's comparable to M2 ball and non-corrosive.

 

To be safe, I'll chrono it with my 03a3 before trying it in the Garand.

 

I have some lead Garand loads on the way, and I still have some lead loads Hoodoo Brown loaded for me for the 03a3. I understand the Garand loads should be a little hotter.

 

I also talked with Norm Purcella today, and he's got some bullets headed my way (.310 hi-tek GC 170gn). I've read several of the threads here about 03a3 loads and M1 loads.

 

I'm hoping to use Norm's 170gn bullets, and Winchester primers, but what about powder for both 03 and M1? Since IMR 4759 is not available, what should I start with? Should I not use the 170gn bullets in the M1, even at ~1650fps?

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In another thread this month, Goatneck Clem provided general information about his Garand load with 170 grain bullets.  That would make a great starting point to work up a good load, or perhaps contact him with a message and ask for the powder charge he uses. 

 

https://www.sassnet.com/wildbunch/forum/index.php?topic=2605.0

 

 

A copy of the Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook will be real useful as you start working on your loads!  As will a chronograph. 

 

 

A recent month of Handloader magazine has a good article on loading jacketed ammo for the Garand. 

By John Barsness.  October 2018 issue.

https://www.riflemagazine.com/magazine/PDF/HL316%20Partial.pdf

A city library MIGHT have a copy.  Or just flip through the Garand article at the link above.

 

I've loaded some cast bullets for my 1903 and A3 rifles with cast bullets and got good results at 1800 FPS with either 5744 or Reloder 7 powders.  Same general results as what the Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook says about cast bullet loads in .30-06.

 

 

You wrote: "4795" as a powder

 

You are thinking about the several-years-discontinued IMR 4759.    Several other powders are almost as accurate and will work fine!

 

With lead bullet loads, folks have good luck loading for the Garand with cast bullets ranging from 150 to 200 grains.  A 170 grain CAST bullet is a good "middle of road" slug.  The balancing act loading for the M1 rifle is to get enough gas energy to work the action, not so much that you damage the operating rod, produce good accuracy and generate little to no leading.  Powders in the burning range of Alliant 2400 to IMR 4198 through 3031 are often used with cast bullets, although sticking with either the Alliant or IMR powders is not required.     

 

 

Good luck, GJ

 

 

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CND

 

Looks like you are headed in the right direction. The Grand Rifles are lots of fun to shoot. There are 8 of us at our club that have been shooting these rifles for a number of years and in the last few years we have included them in our Wild Bunch side Matches. The Bullets you have ordered from Norm are the bullets we all use.  170gr GC .310 Hi-Tek with 35.8grs of IMR 4895 with either Winchester Large Rifle or what I use is Federal Gold Medal Large Rifle. This is a proven load.  All of us at our club are using this load data.  A number of South Texas shooters are using the same load data.  It will produce velocities between 1800 and 1900 FPS. My gun is running about 1850. The accuracy with this load is excellent  AS you know different guns will produce different velocities.  At our state match there were 2 rifles that shot about a 100 rounds each during the GAMM Matches. There was 0 leading and fowling in either Rifle.  We have found lower velocities will not cycle the actions on the Grands and higher velocities are not needed for the distances and the targets we use.  All these rifles are stock actions and the springs have not lightened to shoot these reduced loads.  I shoot my rifle out to 450 yards with these loads and its a hammer. CND are you shooting WB at Winter Range hope to see you there.

 

 

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Howdy Goatneck, as always, thanks for the excellent information. I think I now have all the information I need to get started -- the rest is up to me!

 

I sent in my Winter Range WB app pretty late (maybe 2 weeks ago), so I'm not sure I made it in. I'll give it another week before I start harassing them. It would be great to shoot with you folks again. Don't forget to stop at the Pima Air and Space Museum on your way through Tucson -- take I-10 exit 267 (Valencia Rd.), turn East, then the museum will be on your right in about 1.5mi.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well Pards, I finally got to shoot the Garand today, and I was able to put 2.5" groups at 100yds with only half of my eyes open. She's a solid shooter.

 

However, on several of the strings, the 6th or 7th cartridge (always the 6th or 7th) would jam into the top left area of the breech. I was able to quickly push it back down into the chamber and let the bolt close, but does anyone have any ideas about this?

 

I'm thinking it's the cheap clips I found on ebay or the way I'm loading them. I found it difficult to get all 8 of the cartridges to sit in the "bottom" (or back) of the clip. Is the Garand pretty fussy about getting rounds lined up perfectly in the clip?

 

Thanks again for your wisdom so far!

 

Cheers,

CND

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CN, set the clip on the table and start dropping rounds in number seven will be tight 8 will be tighterpush them in from the top of the clip. Way easier than trying to slide them in from the front. Rounds should be against the back of the clip . Lots of different clips out there. I bought a bunch from cmp. They all work great. In a safe area you could run a clip thru the rifle hand ejecting them and see if it works better. Have you had it apart yet?
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Thanks again, Dusty. I'll try this next time I'm on the range. I have field stripped it (removed trigger group), but I haven't done much else besides scrubbing the bore to remove copper. I need to get it disassembled to inspect everything.

 

I'm reading about 5th, 6th, or 7th round jams, and besides the clips (and how they are loaded), it seems my clip latch spring could be worn. It looks like it's fairly common (and inexpensive) to replace the clip latch spring and op rod spring to troubleshoot some feeding and FTF issues, so I might start there if loading the clips more carefully doesn't resolve the problem.

 

The jam occurred on 6 of the 10 clips I ran through it, but I was reusing the same 3-4 clips, so I may have a bad clip or two. These clips are stamped "AEC" which appear to be OK, according to some Internet strangers.

 

Oh darn, I guess I'm just going to have to keep shooting the thing until I get it figured out  8)

 

BTW, I'm confirmed for Red Dirt this year, so hopefully *cough* the Garand will get used in both TX and OK.

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C.n. Contact cmp and tell them what’s going on. They will make it right. Watch the video on field stripping. Definitely going to get the Garand  used in Texas! We are Working on  the idea of using the Garand on 2 stages to expand its use. We are planning some other side matches also that will be new this year. Hondo Tweed as you know is the match director of the Oklahoma state WB match. He is very robust in supporting BAMM, doughboy and he has some other fun and entertaining side matches. Call him and tell you would be excited to shoot a GAMM side match! He is interested in talking about doing one if he has enough time at the blackpowder range. Does not hurt to voice that we are all in full support of him and would support a GAMM if he chooses to have one. I think I know for a fact that the moving target, beetle baileys jeep that runs on rails built by EJ is going to be there for BAMM and it is a blast! You’ll have a large time at red dirt! Look forward to seeing you. Dusty Boddams
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"7th round jam" is one of the few problems that some Garands have.  Real early production has too much machining work done in the action, but arsenals fixed most of those early receivers.

 

One thing to check is that you have lubed it sufficiently.  Here's a tip directly from CMP:

http://www.civilianmarksmanship.com/assemblyhtml/reassemblefeed2.html

 

And suggestions for good grease here:

http://www.garandgear.com/m1-garand-grease

 

Good luck, I have one that I am fighting the same problem right now. GJ

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I replaced the clip latch spring and the op rod spring -- not sure if those were a problem, but they were cheap, and I wanted to rule them out. When I got this rifle apart, it was very clean and well greased. I only had to add a bit of grease to the bulge in barrel where the op rod rides. When I try it later this week, I'll also see which clips are causing problems.

 

I'm up and running with the IMR4895 load, but it doesn't meter very well in my RCBS Uniflow. I'm going to try H4895 since has a very similar burn rate and supposedly meters better. I'm trying to extrapolate the load data for both IMR and H4895, but it almost looks like I could use these two powders interchangeably for this load. I think I'll start with 35.0gn of H4895 and adjust until I get ~1850fps.

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IMR 4895 and H4895 do not load to exact same weight.  But for cast bullet use, weights for same velocity will be fairly close, and certainly safe to interchange.

 

I get better results with a slightly faster powder, like Reloder 7, in 30 cal cast bullet loads.

 

Most folks can't get target accuracy throwing powder with measures.  That's what tricklers are for.  I use a measure, then dribble a few grains while on a good scale.

 

Good luck, GJ

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I tested my loads today, and the results were interesting. IMR4895, despite throwing +/- 0.4gn on each charge, was the most consistent in both velocity and accuracy. H4895 did OK, but I had a couple of malfunctions with the lighter loads. Overall, I think I'll keep loading the "tried and true" load with IMR4895 and not worry about the powder measure throwing imperfect charges. If I start shooting longer distances or more competitively, I'll have to tighten up these numbers.

 

I only had one 6th round stoppage (in 9 clips), so I just gave that clip to a guy at the range who got excited every time he heard the *ping*. Win/win.

 

Here is all the data I collected today. All loads used Winchester LR primers, .310 Hi-tek GCSil 170gn bullets from Norm Purcella, and mixed brass. 16 shots each.

 

H4895

charge: 33.0gn (+/- 0.2gn)

Avg velocity = 1899fps

Std Deviation = 31fps

High/low velocities = 1963/1839

 

H4895

charge = 34.0gn (+/- 0.2gn)

Avg velocity = 1960fps

Std Deviation = 52fps (yikes)

High/low velocities = 2048/1823

 

** I didn't shoot the ones loaded with 35.0gn of H4895 since velocities were already higher than I expected.

 

IMR4895

charge = 35.8gn (+/- 0.4gn)

Avg velocity = 1963fps

Std Deviation = 31 fps

High/low velocities = 2011/1899

 

Thanks again for all the help.

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