M14 and M1A Talk M14 and M1A rifles - General Posting

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Old 05-06-2008, 20:46   #1
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M1A, how accurate?

Living in CA, there's very few AR models that are legal, none with removable magazines.

That said, the M1A is perfectly legal, and besides I'm not a real fan of the AR anyway. but I would like a home defense rifle, semi auto, or for a rifle suitable for hunting if need be.

I liked carrying the M14 while in the Army ('72) and I guess the M1A is the civilian version, yes?

Now to my question, how accurate are these? I'd be scoping it, as it seems there are some decent mounts for it now.

What's your opinion of these? What limit would you put as far as VERY accurate range for these rifles?

Oh, yes, what's the going rate for these?
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Old 05-06-2008, 23:41   #2
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Hello from California! I haven't even fired my M1A Squad Scout (18" mid-sized) yet but I'm told that 2 MOA is about average for a non National Match M1A. It's a battle rifle not a sniper. I've also read from experts that not even a hand built competition M1A/M14 will approach bolt action accuracy. Again I'm just a newbe with these things but I've been sucking up as much knowledge as I can off m-14forum and from an serious expert from Fulton Armory that hangs out on thefiringline.com.

The complaint I'm reading about scoping the M1A is that the scope mounts work loose, and that the remove and replace repeatability is zilch. Bassett seems to be the exception. I've never used one but I have one on the way. I've also ordered an adjustable cheek piece from Desert Warrior Products. I haven't laid hands on it yet but the feedback was pretty good.

Most people put the effective range of the 16" SOCOM 16 at 600yds, the 18" Squad Scout at 800yds, and the full sized 22" at roughly 1000yds for a torso sized target. Like I said before it's roughly a 2 MOA battle rifle not a 1/2 MOA varmint or target rifle. For my needs, home protection, practice, hog hunting, the mid-sized Squad Scout seems like the perfect compromise between handiness and taking nearly full advantage of the 7.62 NATO round. At 52 I can't see 1000yds over open sights anymore.

I found my best price for my M1A was online at Bud's Gun Shop. The M1A comes with a one-time use "loaded" coupon good for CA legal 10rd mags for a really good price. You can also buy all the tools that the rifle should have come with at a really good price. The disassembly tools etc. Dewey sells a muzzle protector for preventing cleaning rod damage, it's cheap and there is a version for the CA legal muzzle break.

Bud's Gun Shop. The SOCOM-16 and the Squad Scout are both CA approved, and any Standard, Loaded or National Match with CA in the part number should be ok for our little peoples republic. Just remember that if you buy online to budget $50-150 for a local FFL to handle the transfer and most collect sales tax for the state.

Panic over a probable return of the federal assault weapon ban and an expansion to include all semi auto rifles is starting to make these hard to find. I'd start saving soon.

I hope that helps. Maybe I'll see you at the range.
Steve


Last edited by sholling; 05-07-2008 at 14:21.
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Old 05-07-2008, 04:30   #3
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Originally Posted by handirifle View Post

I liked carrying the M14 while in the Army ('72) and I guess the M1A is the civilian version, yes?

Now to my question, how accurate are these? I'd be scoping it, as it seems there are some decent mounts for it now.

What's your opinion of these? What limit would you put as far as VERY accurate range for these rifles?

Oh, yes, what's the going rate for these?
Mine shoot MOA or better with irons and an EOTech

Going rate?
I buy ChiCom Poly Tech & Norinco rifles and have SEI build them up.
Not cheap, but I do get AK47 reliability combined with MOA 7.62mm x 51 accuracy.

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Old 05-07-2008, 13:48   #4
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ive learned the hard way that in california, the m1a is youre best bet for an all around rifle. Ive gone through a lot of rifles to come to this conclusion. Don't waist youre time with anything else. yes they are a bit pricey its worth it. Theres always the mini 14 or 30, to get one in the same accuracy category is vey expensive and arguably not possible.
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Old 05-07-2008, 15:56   #5
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Thanks. H2o man
care to expand on this? "ChiCom Poly Tech & Norinco rifles and have SEI build them up"

I wasn't aware of anyone other than Springfield. As you might guess, I've done zero research, that's why I started here.
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Old 05-07-2008, 16:22   #6
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Originally Posted by handirifle View Post
Thanks. H2O man
care to expand on this? "ChiCom Poly Tech & Norinco rifles and have SEI build them up"

I wasn't aware of anyone other than Springfield. As you might guess, I've done zero research, that's why I started here.
Go HERE and click away ...
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Old 05-07-2008, 16:52   #7
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For complete rifles there are Springfield Armory and Fulton Armory. Build to order ($$$$) there are a few others. You just have to make sure that the muzzle break that they use is CA legal.

A good first investment is Scott Duff's book.
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Old 05-07-2008, 17:16   #8
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Originally Posted by sholling View Post

A good first investment is Scott Duff's book.
Excellent book.

LRB, SEI, FA and SAI offer complete rifles.

I use Smith Enterprise, Inc for all of my custom builds - SEI builds for the US military - my results have been outstanding.

NOTE: I have used Springfield's custom shop with excellent results and there are a few notable small builders such as WarBird that also deliver excellent work.
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Old 05-09-2008, 12:47   #9
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Looks like I have some homework to do.
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Old 05-10-2008, 10:38   #10
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Range

Bone stock poly IDE rings gongs at 600 meters no problem.I suspect the SEI,SAI and Fultons would do considerably better.Bassett machine mount works really well.I take it off on every cleaning and it is always on zero.No need to readjust anything.As for scopes,I was happy with my cheapo Simmons for many years.Got a Busnell 3200 elite that my son gave me.It is nice,it is clear but I wanna go back to my Simmons,could hit better with it.

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Old 05-15-2008, 16:37   #11
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Originally Posted by handirifle View Post
Living in CA, there's very few AR models that are legal, none with removable magazines.

That said, the M1A is perfectly legal, and besides I'm not a real fan of the AR anyway. but I would like a home defense rifle, semi auto, or for a rifle suitable for hunting if need be.

I liked carrying the M14 while in the Army ('72) and I guess the M1A is the civilian version, yes?

Now to my question, how accurate are these? I'd be scoping it, as it seems there are some decent mounts for it now.

What's your opinion of these? What limit would you put as far as VERY accurate range for these rifles?

Oh, yes, what's the going rate for these?

Ive put a Military issue scope mount on my Springfield M1A and can shoot less than a 1" pattern at 100 yards (Limit is me, not the gun). Shoots a bit better than my Bushmaster AR-15 (Which is about 1-1/2" at 100 yards). Although again, probably me, not the gun.

The furthest I've shot my M1A and actually hit my target was nearly 400 yards. (Shot a deer running across a corn field. Was at 389 paces).
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Old 05-28-2008, 22:50   #12
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OK been off this forum for a bit, but am back now. Looked hard at the mini 14 the CA legal AR's including the "off list" models, and even the Kel Tec SU16. The Kel Tec is about on par with my High Point 9mm. Not pretty but has been ultra reliable and mine is accurate as well. Not sure how reliable the SU would be.

I cannot warm up to the SU16's looks. I am leary of the AR's for legal reasons, including the "off list" ones. No denying the accuracy and adaptability of the AR's. On the CA legal ones I don't like having to open it up to reload.

The Mini 14, seems expensive and hard to make accurate. I see everything listed in the mini forum from 6" 50yd accuracy to close to MOA. I like the look and feel of the mini though, more than an AR, and like the AR it's cheaper to shoot than the M1A will be, plus less recoil.

The M1A is more expensive, heavier, in some models, and more expensive to shoot. It's fully legal, WITH detachable mags, gobs of power and, it seems, accurate enough to get the job done.

Here's the deal.

I threw out an offer to my wife and she seemed receptive. The offer? Come May of '09 I am forced to retire, but partly because of that, I was planning on going out Jan 3, '09.

In May I HAVE to go cause it's Congresssional law that we retire by the end of the month we turn 56. I'm an air traffic controller and after 26 years, I'm ready to go. I told her tonight if I got a new rifle (pointed at an AR) I'd stay till May. She seems to like the idea, but now I'm getting cold feet on the AR and wondering about an M1A. The norm around here, price wise is about $1800 for the average ones and 2800+ for the Nat Match.

Is the match one worth the extra $$?

This would be a plinker and target rifle. MIGHT try to compete, but not sure.
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Old 05-28-2008, 22:54   #13
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Just started looking at Buds Guns, MAN what a price difference from around here!!!

$1875 for a Nat Match? A little difference is one thing but $1,000? What a rip off here local.
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Old 05-28-2008, 23:02   #14
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What's the difference from Super match and National Match?
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Old 05-29-2008, 00:08   #15
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handirifle,

I cant tell you the bits and pieces difference but one thing to keep in mind is what are you going to do with it. You stated out thinking about ARs and Mini-14s. Those are light handy rifles and carbines good for 200-300yds. I started out with the same thoughts. I'm not sure where you are in California but there just aren't many places we can shoot 1000 yards and the more I thought about it I didn't want a full length M1A/M14. Someday maybe yes but I can't afford (I'm retired too) to feed a 308 for the ton of target practice it takes to become National Match material - not at $.50-1.50/rd! I bought the 18" M1A Squad Scout ($1400 at Buds) as a very handy and hard hitting SHTF rifle good out to 800yds. I can afford to feed it enough to become and remain proficient, as long as I supplement that practice with more affordable toys. The more affordable toys also bruise my shoulder a lot less than a .308. You'll find me shooting my M1A about once a month and 100rds is plenty. You also find me at the range twice a week putting 300rds a whack through target and match grade 22s rifles.

Anyway if you're in SoCal you'll have a chance to try out all the flavors of the M1A and talk to the factory reps at the annual Shooting Fair in Corona June 6-8. I never miss it.

Last edited by sholling; 05-29-2008 at 00:11.
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Old 05-29-2008, 07:08   #16
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Originally Posted by sholling View Post
handirifle,

I cant tell you the bits and pieces difference but one thing to keep in mind is what are you going to do with it. You stated out thinking about ARs and Mini-14s. Those are light handy rifles and carbines good for 200-300yds. I started out with the same thoughts. I'm not sure where you are in California but there just aren't many places we can shoot 1000 yards and the more I thought about it I didn't want a full length M1A/M14. Someday maybe yes but I can't afford (I'm retired too) to feed a 308 for the ton of target practice it takes to become National Match material - not at $.50-1.50/rd! I bought the 18" M1A Squad Scout ($1400 at Buds) as a very handy and hard hitting SHTF rifle good out to 800yds. I can afford to feed it enough to become and remain proficient, as long as I supplement that practice with more affordable toys. The more affordable toys also bruise my shoulder a lot less than a .308. You'll find me shooting my M1A about once a month and 100rds is plenty. You also find me at the range twice a week putting 300rds a whack through target and match grade 22s rifles.

Anyway if you're in SoCal you'll have a chance to try out all the flavors of the M1A and talk to the factory reps at the annual Shooting Fair in Corona June 6-8. I never miss it.

Yes I did start out with the others, that are lighter, but never really wanted a plinker. Had kinda ended up settling on something in that line since I was fearing what might not be legal.

The mini has all but been ruled out due to accuracy issues. I knew this early on but thought I could send it off to Accuracy Systems inc for a makeover, but then I have about the same $$ in it as a M1a. the only advantages left are cheaper ammo and lighter rifle.

I live in northern LA county (high desert, Palmdale). I belong to a range http://www.dmrpc.org/index.html where we happen to have a 1000yd range and they shoot it once a month. Only once on that range, but we can shoot 600yds any day. They have to shoot overhead the 600yd benches for the 1000, so they close the rest of the range down for the long range shoot, that's why it only shoots once a month. I believe they have one practice day and one meet.

There are tactical and Hi Power meets as well.

Never heard of the Corona meet, but will look into it. The month of June is just about locked solid with family events, so not sure how it would work out.

As for the SHTF purpose, that is one lingering thought as well. That 22" barrel, might be a bit cumbersome. A long barreled AR wouldn't be much better in that respect either.
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Old 07-10-2008, 16:01   #17
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An accurized M1A/M14 will shoot MOA with no issues. This involves getting a good barrel and doing the needed mods to the gun and parts then bedding it in a solid stock. I have a service grade from over 20 years ago bedded in a McMillan stock with NM sights that shoots very good for a service rifle. I also have a .308 garand with a Krieger barrel that is a real hammer on target and I shoot service rifle with my self built AR15 with Krieger barrel. If yu want to shoot service rifle I would suggest a good AR15. Nothing against them but the AR15 rifles are cheaper,easier and very competitive with little needed to make them work and you can do almost all the work yourself.

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Old 08-03-2008, 21:01   #18
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Just the fact that you are asking about match grade rifles makes me think you should look at www.lrbarms.com They have a MUCH MUCH better scope mount setup that you can't get on anything else. Won't dig in you back when slung either.

Lrb arms and others sell an aluminum stock (Jae 100) available which you can order with your rifle which perports to have bedded accuracy while still being able to disassemble your rifle. It is also lighter, and won't smoke if you heat up your rifle like a glass bedded stock will.

I was going to buy this setup, but fate had me buying my buddy's SocomII. Maybe next summer...

Oh, and I wouldn't rule out the mini's so quickly. The new version has a heavy barrel. I don't know what the accuracy will be like, but I get 2" out of my pencil barrel 181 series, so I can't imagine the "new" mini's could be any worse. However, the Scout M1A is only feels like a pound heavier, and the CA brake works really well. Very controllable.
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Last edited by totalloser; 08-03-2008 at 21:07.
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Old 08-03-2008, 21:21   #19
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OK it's over. In some ways I settled, in some ways not. I bought a min 14 Target model. I settled due to cost of gun and ammo. I got the new mini plus rings and Burris scope for $1400 OTD, and that would have been an entry level M1A. I know they are NOT the same gun, the M1A is more of a gun, for sure, but money is always an issue.

On the plus side, while wringing out loads at 50yds (where I start all my work, regardless of caliber) I found two loads producing sub 1/4" at 50yds. Both with 55gr bullets, Vmax and Sierra Gameking, and Varget and H4198 powders.

Thanks here for all the advice, but I really needed something I could afford to shoot a lot and the cost of ammo, and reloadability were BIG factors, more than I originally thought they might be.

I cannot shoot service rifle with it, but that's another sacrifice.
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