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In 1968, as a result of the draft, I found myself in Basic Training @ Ft. Jackson, S.C. It is there that I first encountered the M-14. It's been a long time since but here's what I remember of that training & experience.
The rifle was heavy, especially since we had to force march with it with full backpacks and steel helmets (this was in the S.C. summer). There was no rubber butt plate...just a steel one that let your shoulder know it, after a day at the range. We fired it from various positions: including the prone, seated, standing and the squat. I remember that at the prone position the man-sized targets were far away...I think 300 yards. You could barely see it but you did eventually hit it. No scopes.
The most difficult position by far was the squatting one. I don't remember the distance but I do remember it was difficult to maintain a steady hold.

I've had a dozen or so rifles since then but can say if I were limited to 1 rifle I would choose the M14, perhaps because of my familiarity with it and what I learned it can do.

Of all the things I encountered during Basic, grenade throwing & shooting the M-14 were the most fun.:smile:
 

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I carried one in Nam, after my AR screwed up. And it work when I needed it. And later shot DCM matches with my NM M1A.This is old school match rifle. I even hunted with it. Still holds MOA. Love the full size battle rifles.
 

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Open a can of worms, why dont'cha! :banana:

I have a confession. I have an unhealthy love for the M14. Or the M1A if it makes you happier to call it that. I've also referred to them as M305 or M14S because I was living in Canada and I owned three of the Norinco copies. Don't hate me too much for that...in Canada it's an honest-to-goodness semi-auto .308 with a FORGED receiver that (unlike any AR-10) can be used for hunting in Canada. Please don't get me started on the idiocy that passes for gun laws in the People's Rebublik of Kanukkistan.

The downside to those $400 forged receivers? They arrived in what we referred to as "chu-wood" stocks. You could inlet them with a set of lee-press-on nails....or maybe they were just soft because they were so saturated in the chicom equivalent of cosmoline. Do you think they use soybeans to make that stuff? It does smell like it's been decomposing for a while when you open the shipping box.

They also had flash hiders welded in place, and looked like they had been assembled by a high school shop class on a day when the teacher played hooky and the class got into the sorghum liquor. Hint....if someone offers you a glass of Chinese liquor that's made out of sorghum, run away. The stuff tastes like it's fermented out of dead people's feet. A friend of mine got two bottles as a gift. After one attempt to drink the stuff (while smoking cigars in his garage), we tested it's flammability and then started using it as degreaser for Jeep parts. It worked very well in the application.

But I digress. The heart of the issue is that because Chicom M14's are cheap in Canada, a guy who knows how to do some basic tweaks can get a VERY effective .308 semi-auto for $600 to $700 all in. I learned to do the following:

-Swap the stock for a USGI fiberglass or a Boyd's.
-Swap out the rear sight for an Italian Garand rear.
-Pick up a NM rear peep if you're going to shoot irons.
-Break the weld and install either a USGI NM flash suppressor or an SEI muzzle brake
-Swap out the op rod spring guide rod for a cylindrical one
-Massage the trigger mech with valve grinding compound
-Peen the barrel under the op rod guide to get it to seat tightly. and then get some red loctite on that bad boy.
-Tighten up the gas system by removing material the back side of the gas cylinder lock until it was uber-snug when it locked up in the 6:00 position. You can also unitize by TIG welding or installing shims, but I like the simplicity of just tuning the existing part to fit.

In case I haven't made it obvious, I derived a HUGE amount of satisfaction in polishing up these "diamonds in the rough" and making them into shooters. I just plain like shooting that .308 semi and the short stroke piston just plain WORKS. Generally you could get that rifle to shoot 'round 'bout 1 to 1.5 MOA with good ammo by doing all of the above. Not bad for $600.

That said, the M14 has a few quirks.

#1. Scope mounting - it is HARD on scopes, HARD on scope mounts, and even with the best of them you get a chin weld instead of a cheek weld. Even with the best scope mounts, you need to have experience with the M14's quirks to make things work reliably.

#2. With that big 'ol artillery barrel on the front it's heavy and cumbersome. A barrel cut down to 18.5" is FAR more pointable.

#3. That gas system has a LOT of reciprocating parts. Even if you tighten it up and massage it until it rings like a tuning fork, you need to stay on top of it.

I love the rifle....but you need to know it, love it, and understand it's personality quirks if you want to avoid cursing at it. It's a LOT of gun in more than one way.
 

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Oh my, you got too much work to make shoot the way you want. I paid $425 for my toy. And when I was a little younger I held moa at 600 yards from a prone position. With my reloads of 168 grain match rounds. The barrel is a match with 1 in 11 twist.:yup:
 

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I enjoy my M1A, paid a little more than $400 ;-). I have learned that you should not buy after market mags.
 

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Never carried a 14 but Love my M1A - everything about it. Mine came in an olive drab wooden "footlocker" case with quick detach scope/mount, bipod, cheek pad, armorers manual, several mags, bayonet, and winter camo & wooden stock sets.
I've had it for about 25 years.
 

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Open a can of worms, why dont'cha! :banana:

I have a confession. I have an unhealthy love for the M14. Or the M1A if it makes you happier to call it that. I've also referred to them as M305 or M14S because I was living in Canada and I owned three of the Norinco copies. Don't hate me too much for that...in Canada it's an honest-to-goodness semi-auto .308 with a FORGED receiver that (unlike any AR-10) can be used for hunting in Canada. Please don't get me started on the idiocy that passes for gun laws in the People's Rebublik of Kanukkistan.

The downside to those $400 forged receivers? They arrived in what we referred to as "chu-wood" stocks. You could inlet them with a set of lee-press-on nails....or maybe they were just soft because they were so saturated in the chicom equivalent of cosmoline. Do you think they use soybeans to make that stuff? It does smell like it's been decomposing for a while when you open the shipping box.

They also had flash hiders welded in place, and looked like they had been assembled by a high school shop class on a day when the teacher played hooky and the class got into the sorghum liquor. Hint....if someone offers you a glass of Chinese liquor that's made out of sorghum, run away. The stuff tastes like it's fermented out of dead people's feet. A friend of mine got two bottles as a gift. After one attempt to drink the stuff (while smoking cigars in his garage), we tested it's flammability and then started using it as degreaser for Jeep parts. It worked very well in the application.

But I digress. The heart of the issue is that because Chicom M14's are cheap in Canada, a guy who knows how to do some basic tweaks can get a VERY effective .308 semi-auto for $600 to $700 all in. I learned to do the following:

-Swap the stock for a USGI fiberglass or a Boyd's.
-Swap out the rear sight for an Italian Garand rear.
-Pick up a NM rear peep if you're going to shoot irons.
-Break the weld and install either a USGI NM flash suppressor or an SEI muzzle brake
-Swap out the op rod spring guide rod for a cylindrical one
-Massage the trigger mech with valve grinding compound
-Peen the barrel under the op rod guide to get it to seat tightly. and then get some red loctite on that bad boy.
-Tighten up the gas system by removing material the back side of the gas cylinder lock until it was uber-snug when it locked up in the 6:00 position. You can also unitize by TIG welding or installing shims, but I like the simplicity of just tuning the existing part to fit.

In case I haven't made it obvious, I derived a HUGE amount of satisfaction in polishing up these "diamonds in the rough" and making them into shooters. I just plain like shooting that .308 semi and the short stroke piston just plain WORKS. Generally you could get that rifle to shoot 'round 'bout 1 to 1.5 MOA with good ammo by doing all of the above. Not bad for $600.

That said, the M14 has a few quirks.

#1. Scope mounting - it is HARD on scopes, HARD on scope mounts, and even with the best of them you get a chin weld instead of a cheek weld. Even with the best scope mounts, you need to have experience with the M14's quirks to make things work reliably.

#2. With that big 'ol artillery barrel on the front it's heavy and cumbersome. A barrel cut down to 18.5" is FAR more pointable.

#3. That gas system has a LOT of reciprocating parts. Even if you tighten it up and massage it until it rings like a tuning fork, you need to stay on top of it.

I love the rifle....but you need to know it, love it, and understand it's personality quirks if you want to avoid cursing at it. It's a LOT of gun in more than one way.
#1. Scope mounting - it is HARD on scopes, HARD on scope mounts, and even with the best of them you get a chin weld instead of a cheek weld. Even with the best scope mounts, you need to have experience with the M14's quirks to make things work reliably.
That funny, I have used the same scope on my M1A for over 25 years, and still works. Also if you try one this, for your scope. It helps on the cheek weild. MidwayUSA Rifle Cheek Rest with Rifle Ammunition Carrier 5-Round Fixed Stock Black MidwayUSA Rifle Cheek Rest with Rifle Ammunition Carrier 5-Round Fixed Stock Black
Also the mount did not become loose. And it always works.




]#2. With that big 'ol artillery barrel on the front it's heavy and cumbersome. A barrel cut down to 18.5" is FAR more pointable. Not for me, I love 22'' barrel and it point very well for me. In off-hand and prone and in hunting mule-deer. And the 60's a man. The M-14 is just the Son of the M-1 is also great rifle.
 

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What's your experience with the M-14?

I've never had the pleasure (unless, does a mini-14 count?:tongue:)

.
 

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That funny, I have used the same scope on my M1A for over 25 years, and still works. Also the mount did not become loose. And it always works.
We've had this discussion before. I am delighted that your testing (sample size=1) has been successful, and that you used a good scope mount and good scope. My personal experience (based on owning three different M14's, and shooting alongside many other M14 owners) is that when compared with modern .308 semi-autos, it requires more attention to detail when installing a scope mount, a more robust scope mount, and a more robust scope in order to achieve a positive result.

If you have personal experience with a modern .308 semi-auto that requires as much engineering and quality of materials to be invested into it's scope mount to achieve good results, please enlighten the rest of us.

Not for me, I love 22'' barrel and it point very well for me. In off-hand and prone and in hunting mule-deer. And the 60's man. The M-14 is just the Son of the M-1 is also great rifle.
I agree...both the M-14 and M-1 are great rifles...but what makes a good rifle for positional shooting on the range (or hunting out of a stand) does not translate into a good rifle for hunting feral hogs in close quarters. If you doubt me, I'll grab my Ruger Gunsite rifle and you grab your M14. Starting from the high ready, we'll see who scores better on snap shooting at 15, 25, and 50 yards. If we happen to tie, we'll take a trip to Gunsite, and run "The Scrambler" as the tie breaker.


Hint....I've done all these things at Gunsite, and I know for a fact that I'll do better running my bolt gun with a 16" barrel and short LOP than I would with an M14.

Again - I am not attacking the M-14, nor am I attacking you or your experiences with the rifle. As I said in my post, I truly enjoy the rifle. I am simply recognizing the realities of it's "off the shelf" design when compared with other firearms that were designed 40 years later.
 

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Snap shooting with a 308 at 15,25 or 50 yards. I have done it for real. You should also do it at 100, 200 250 and 300 yards. If things go well try 400 yards out to 600 yards. By the way I did use for a little while in three gun matches. Did real very, as I recall.
 

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Oh my, you got too much work to make shoot the way you want. I paid $425 for my toy. And when I was a little younger I held moa at 600 yards from a prone position. With my reloads of 168 grain match rounds. The barrel is a match with 1 in 11 twist.:yup:
Yes...there was a lot of work involved. But after doing that work, my rifles (with rack grade chicom barrels) were shooting 1 to 1.5 MOA when fed good ammo. The sum total of the purchase price for all three of my rifles and all of the parts that I installed (which included a VERY nice Wenig custom laminate stock) was less than the list price for a single Springfield with a match barrel....so all in all I think that the sweat equity which I invested in those rifles turned out pretty well.

I sold those rifles to friends, and the one with the 18" barrel makes a dandy (if somewhat heavy) option for mule deer.
 

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Yes...there was a lot of work involved. But after doing that work, my rifles (with rack grade chicom barrels) were shooting 1 to 1.5 MOA when fed good ammo. The sum total of the purchase price for all three of my rifles and all of the parts that I installed (which included a VERY nice Wenig custom laminate stock) was less than the list price for a single Springfield with a match barrel....so all in all I think that the sweat equity which I invested in those rifles turned out pretty well.

I sold those rifles to friends, and the one with the 18" barrel makes a dandy (if somewhat heavy) option for mule deer.
I sure they did. But for me I want to be do it all and do it well. I like the 4'' longer barrel. Heavy? I have
use it in the mountains two or three times.
 

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Snap shooting with a 308 at 15,25 or 50 yards. I have done it for real. You should also do it at 100, 200 250 and 300 yards. If things go well try 400 yards out to 600 yards. By the way I did use for a little while in three gun matches. Did real very, as I recall.
Let me know how snap shots work out for you at 300 yards. By the way....with an actual snap shot, per Colonel Cooper's standards, you have 1.5 seconds to get from the high ready to round on target.

By the way, I am also perfectly comfortable with using that 16" barreled Ruger at any and all of the ranges that you specified. The last time I fired it was actually at 600 yards. I very much irritated the gents that I was shooting next to....because they were all shooting high-dollar custom rifles with what seemed to be astronomical telescopes mounted on top of them....and my off-the-rack short-barreled pig-killing rifle was allowing me to put 10 out of 10 rounds on the gong at 600 yards.

To be blunt, it's the rifleman that makes the difference - not the rifle. That said, any competent rifleman will readily acknowledge that some rifles are better for specific tasks than others.
 

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Let me know how snap shots work out for you at 300 yards. By the way....with an actual snap shot, per Colonel Cooper's standards, you have 1.5 seconds to get from the high ready to round on target.

By the way, I am also perfectly comfortable with using that 16" barreled Ruger at any and all of the ranges that you specified. The last time I fired it was actually at 600 yards. I very much irritated the gents that I was shooting next to....because they were all shooting high-dollar custom rifles with what seemed to be astronomical telescopes mounted on top of them....and my off-the-rack short-barreled pig-killing rifle was allowing me to put 10 out of 10 rounds on the gong at 600 yards.

To be blunt, it's the rifleman that makes the difference - not the rifle. That said, any competent rifleman will readily acknowledge that some rifles are better for specific tasks than others.
True, And I have use a m-14 with a happy switch for real in clearing small to mid-size boats. I also have used it for real with the Marines in thick bush. In those days it was for real. My longest shot for real and the Marines confirm it was 425 yards. I do know what it can do, even with the long barrel, when you have to. My M1A does not eat-up scope's or mount gets loose and it's shooter. All I did at 600 yards was hold MOA in 5 rounds. I did put a few rounds on my 12'' steel plate at 825 yards. And I have shot a off the rack 308 that did this at 1,000 yards with 155 grain A-max. But being I'm 71 years old I shot it from my table. Going prone hurts a little.
 

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Okay....we get it....you like the m14. Since you do not seem to have any interest in answering questions posed or actually discussing, and will simply repeat the same anecdotes time after time, I am done here.



Have you considered participating in one of the presidential debates?

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk
 

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Went Distinguished with a match grade M14 built by the guys at Crane, when on active duty. It is a superior platform, wish I had one today. I think its only disadvantage is ammo sensitivity. The one I had loved M852. As old as I am now, it'd need a scope and they are prone to difficulties there. I think Sadlak or Smith Enterprises ones were the most desirable. I miss my old friend!
 
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Parris Island the summer of 1964 qualified with the M14 (200-300&500Yds course of fire) after the Island Camp Geiger ITR (basic infantry training) every Marine is a Rifleman. (As a side note we used the M1 rifle during basic infantry training at Geiger) Viet-Nam I am part of a AO team thus my primary weapon is a 1911A1. The first major operation I learn the wisdom of every Marine is a Rifleman. Thus during and afterwards a battlefield pick up M14. The 1911A1 supplements the M14 that's the way it went.

During the summer of 1968 I am at GITMO with 3rd Battalion 8th Marines the M14 is still the issued rifle stateside. Part of my duties was marksmanship instruction for Sailors assigned to the defense battalion. At that point the Navy still used the M1 but chambered for 7.62mm Nato. That's my story concerning the M14 rifle.
 

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I used the M16 when I was in, but after I got out I got myself a Springfield M1A.

Box stock and it will shoot hand-loads into 1 1/4" groups all day long. Factory loads are not quit so good and the cheap stuff usually goes into about 3 1/2". This ia all with iron sights.

I love it.
 
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