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Old February 6th, 2021, 08:41 PM #1
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Purchase Advice M1 Garand

All,

I am constantly on the lookout for an M1. Want to buy one bad, but I'm not in a hurry. I have done a little research regarding what to look for in a good Garand.
Any suggestions regarding what I should beware of?

I am not looking for the best one available. Kind of prefer beaten up and definitely an older one.
Any sure method to determine the age?
Going to HOCO show tomorrow to continue my search.

thanks
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Old February 6th, 2021, 08:43 PM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IronDuck View Post
All,

I am constantly on the lookout for an M1. Want to buy one bad, but I'm not in a hurry. I have done a little research regarding what to look for in a good Garand.
Any suggestions regarding what I should beware of?

I am not looking for the best one available. Kind of prefer beaten up and definitely an older one.
Any sure method to determine the age?
Going to HOCO show tomorrow to continue my search.

thanks
Make sure it's the real deal.... NOT the aftermarket cast receiver.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 08:51 PM #3
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Originally Posted by IronDuck View Post
Any sure method to determine the age?
Serial number on the receiver. Around 3.6 million is 1945 - end of WWII.

The only two made during WWII were Springfield and Winchester.

Winchester was World War II only.

IHC and H&R were only Post-World War II. Built for the Korean war.

The barrel will be stamped with a three digit date. Finding one with an original barrel is like finding a virgin unicorn. For the most part they have all been through at least one arsenal rebuilds.

Most everything out there is a mix of parts of various vintage.

When you start getting into it, various cartouches on the stock become significant and can add value.

If money is no object, CMP Auction has some post-Korean War Garands that are still in the foil wrapper - never been issued.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:01 PM #4
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As Trepang wrote, most are comprised of mixed parts. The receiver might be a Winchester 1943 and the barrel a 1953 Springfield. Muzzle and throat wear count for a shooter. Research that. No so called tanker, shortened, rifles. Beware of welded receivers. Tight fit trigger assembly to stock is good. CMP has a forum. Good questions and answers. And if you join a cmp recognized club or the garand collectors assn, you can qualify to buy one of their rifles.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:03 PM #5
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If cmp has them at the moment i would buy from them. You arent likely to find a better price than from there.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:06 PM #6
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Get one off CMP. Those are legit and the prices are better than you'll find elsewhere. I paid a little more to get a Winchester, because I wanted a WW2 rifle and Winchester only made them during WW2. It is an amazing gun, tons of history and fun to shoot. I'm glad I never had to carry that across Europe or the Pacific and glad that I don't have to fire that without ear protection.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:07 PM #7
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Thanks, I looked at the CMP's auctions. Unfortunately, cost does have a firm grip on my purchasing powers. Current bids have surpassed me.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:09 PM #8
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My M1s are all CMP Service Grade before they went to that awful black parkerizing (last five years). Korean War or later in next-to-perfect shape are definitely still out there and are the way to go for an excellent shooter. The patient guy should wait for 1 TE/ME readings for $1k to $1.2k (new condition shooters are worth the money). WW2 era rifles have the historical appeal but are often less pristine. Plus, it's hard to shoot them on the reg for fear of wearing out a war relic. Nowadays, young shooters are more interested in collecting Vietnam era rifles so I expect the prices on nice M1s will unfortunately deflate slightly in the coming years. Still my favorite rifles to shoot. Great accuracy for a semi-auto battle rifle.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:13 PM #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spoon059 View Post
Get one off CMP. Those are legit and the prices are better than you'll find elsewhere. I paid a little more to get a Winchester, because I wanted a WW2 rifle and Winchester only made them during WW2. It is an amazing gun, tons of history and fun to shoot. I'm glad I never had to carry that across Europe or the Pacific and glad that I don't have to fire that without ear protection.
My preference is the Winchester make. My dad did carry one onto shore at Utah beach, across France and into the Huertgen forest. Called it a log, that saved him a few times over.
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Old February 6th, 2021, 09:17 PM #10
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Good metal is extremely important to me. By good metal I mean no rust or pitting, especially on the receiver legs and under the receiver heal. I always recommend taking the receiver out of the stock to inspect those locations. Also, learn about welded receivers and what to look for. Avoid them.

Also, do not get hung up on this “correctness” fantasy that collectors have created. There’s millions of these out there and there guys that own a ton of them and will swap out parts to make them “correct” when in reality mixmaster rifles are probably more historically correct due to the nature of the service life. To me, these rifles are “correct” the day they left the DODs books. The mixed and updated parts it received throughout its service history are more correct than some guy in his basement. Granted, there are rifles out there that will have a good amount of “correct” parts but if someone is selling you a 100% “correct” rifle, chances are they corrected it. Don’t buy into stories. “This rifle went over the beaches, saw the Bulge...” It’s next to impossible to prove any of that. Buy the rifle, not the story.

I go out to the CMP North Store and hand pick service grade SAs and HRAs. The IHCs and WRAs aren’t worth the extra money to me as it’s just a name stamped into the receiver. The WRAs will also tend to be a bit rougher in fit and finish with machining. You can mail order but that’s taking a huge gamble. You’d be surprised what you’ll see on the racks. The wide range of condition just within the service grades can be eye opening. And when you mail order, no ones hand picking for you. They are literally just grabbing the next rifle for n the rack, putting it in a box and shipping it to you.

Most people want a WW2 receiver, original barrel to the receiver, and original USGI wood. Don’t be surprised if you can’t check all those boxes.

A lot of this is my opinion from personal experience. Take it as you wish. You’re more than welcome to PM me with any questions.


EDIT:
I’ll add by saying Scott Duffs books are a great start to learning the ins and outs of these rifles. The newer Bruce Cannfield book is great as well.
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