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View Full Version : National Match M1A question.


eighteenninetytwo
06-21-2010, 5:26 PM
I"m considering getting me one of these beauties. Question, what sort of accuracy can be got out of the box with one of these rifles (wooden stock), assuming I use decent ammo and I do my part? Will I need expensive add ons etc to be able to get MOA or thereabouts accuracy as I'll be stretching financially to get the rifle initially.

Timberwolf
06-21-2010, 5:29 PM
If its a Nat Match you can expect 1 MOA or less accuracy with match ammo, if you do your part.

eighteenninetytwo
06-21-2010, 5:42 PM
How many companies manufacture these? is it just Springfield?

Timberwolf
06-21-2010, 5:47 PM
Springfield Armory

Sicarius
06-21-2010, 5:56 PM
Fulton makes good M1a's and Norinco's can be picked up for a very good price and they are super nice too... Some consider to be better than SA.
Kevin

eighteenninetytwo
06-21-2010, 5:59 PM
Do they all have the frankly rotten looking plastic upper handguard? I'm a big C&R guy and love the walnut look. or is that plastic monstrosity actually necessary to the accuracy by providing some extra stabilisation of some sort?

jtv3062
06-21-2010, 6:30 PM
I would have this guy build me 1 on a LRB ARMS receiver

http://www.tedbrownrifles.com/

jtv3062
06-21-2010, 6:30 PM
Triple post

dachan
06-21-2010, 6:55 PM
If you want to stay local, Tom has been building service rifles, many for the state team for at least 30yrs:
http://www.tlcgunworks.com/

jtv3062
06-21-2010, 7:00 PM
Triple post

popeye4
06-21-2010, 7:38 PM
Do they all have the frankly rotten looking plastic upper handguard? I'm a big C&R guy and love the walnut look. or is that plastic monstrosity actually necessary to the accuracy by providing some extra stabilisation of some sort?

The fiberglass handguard was used because the original wooden one would catch fire on full auto. You can put a wooden one on, but you want it to not bind. Fulton has a nice substitute, but the USGI fiberglass one is fine.

I think 1 MOA is attainable, but you'll have to make sure ALL the NM mods are done and you'll have to keep them maintained.

popeye4
06-21-2010, 7:39 PM
Fulton makes good M1a's and Norinco's can be picked up for a very good price and they are super nice too... Some consider to be better than SA.
Kevin

Norinco RECIEVERS are highly regarded, the rest of the rifle not so much.

semiautosniper
06-21-2010, 8:21 PM
Shooting M1A well is more difficult than a bolt action rifle or AR10/LR308. The ideal practical set-up for combat/hunting purpose is a heavy-weight match grade 22'inch barrel (Krieger) with toned 4.0 lb USGI trigger pak, unitized and shimmed gas cyclinder, properly relieved handguard, sadlak gas piston, match grade op-rod guide, Sadlak or SEI scope mount, and USGI m14 fiberglass stock with no glass bedding. Glass bedding will tighten up your group at range beyond 600 yards, however, with bedding, it is pain to maintain and hence not a combat-ready step-up... in addition, glass bedding requires drilling away stock to make room for the epoxy resin, and epoxy is not as hard as fiberglass, and so it will wear over time, which requires re-bedding, plus oil may cause premature damage to the bedding, the rifle must be cleaned upside down. With heavy weight barrel, the accuracy is not noticeably better with glass bedding. USGI fiberglass stock is a must for hunting, as wooden stock will warp and expand when it get wet due to rain or humidity.

popeye4
06-22-2010, 8:27 AM
Shooting M1A well is more difficult than a bolt action rifle or AR10/LR308. The ideal practical set-up for combat/hunting purpose is a heavy-weight match grade 22'inch barrel (Krieger) with toned 4.0 lb USGI trigger pak, unitized and shimmed gas cyclinder, properly relieved handguard, sadlak gas piston, match grade op-rod guide, Sadlak or SEI scope mount, and USGI m14 fiberglass stock with no glass bedding. Glass bedding will tighten up your group at range beyond 600 yards, however, with bedding, it is pain to maintain and hence not a combat-ready step-up... in addition, glass bedding requires drilling away stock to make room for the epoxy resin, and epoxy is not as hard as fiberglass, and so it will wear over time, which requires re-bedding, plus oil may cause premature damage to the bedding, the rifle must be cleaned upside down. With heavy weight barrel, the accuracy is not noticeably better with glass bedding. USGI fiberglass stock is a must for hunting, as wooden stock will warp and expand when it get wet due to rain or humidity.

You need to clean the rifle upside down to keep the fluids from running into the gas cylinder. You also need to keep them away from the bedding as well (if present), but lack of bedding does not remove the requirement. And use a bore guide, because a nick on the crown will negate all that work done to the rest of the rifle.

The heavy barrel will also not substitute for glass bedding in a wood stock. For a 1 MOA rifle, glass bedding is a requirement. You may also need to do some stock mods to the USGI fiberglass stock to get a heavy barrel in (but I don't know for sure, because I've never done that).

And I would think that a battle ready field rifle would not be NM conditioned. It isn't a light rifle to start with, the heavy barrel makes it less so, and the NM conditioning isn't going to hold up under field conditions. When they were used competitively, the bedding alone would have to be redone periodically (like annually, more frequently for the military teams). There are better, less costly choices for hunting as well.

If you want to really get to know the M14, go over the The Firing Line: http://m14tfl.com/upload/ Those guys know their M14's!

-hanko
06-22-2010, 8:33 AM
Fulton makes good M1a's and Norinco's can be picked up for a very good price and they are super nice too... Some consider to be better than SA.
Kevin
I don't know of anyone knowledgeable who thinks that the current SA (NOT the real government Springfield Arsenal) are better than Polytech. If you're concerned about the bolt issues reported on the interweb, have a usgi bolt installed and headspaced.

-hanko

vf111
06-22-2010, 9:59 AM
Shooting M1A well is more difficult than a bolt action rifle or AR10/LR308. The ideal practical set-up for combat/hunting purpose is a heavy-weight match grade 22'inch barrel (Krieger) with toned 4.0 lb USGI trigger pak, unitized and shimmed gas cyclinder, properly relieved handguard, sadlak gas piston, match grade op-rod guide, Sadlak or SEI scope mount, and USGI m14 fiberglass stock with no glass bedding. Glass bedding will tighten up your group at range beyond 600 yards, however, with bedding, it is pain to maintain and hence not a combat-ready step-up... in addition, glass bedding requires drilling away stock to make room for the epoxy resin, and epoxy is not as hard as fiberglass, and so it will wear over time, which requires re-bedding, plus oil may cause premature damage to the bedding, the rifle must be cleaned upside down. With heavy weight barrel, the accuracy is not noticeably better with glass bedding. USGI fiberglass stock is a must for hunting, as wooden stock will warp and expand when it get wet due to rain or humidity.

A NM M14 and a service-grade M14 are two totally different animals. If I wanted a NM rifle, I'd do all the mods you referenced and it would be strictly a competition / range gun. If I wanted a service-grade rifle for SHTF or for hunting / ranch use, I'd skip all the mods and use USGI or equivalent parts to keep it simple.

Sicarius
06-22-2010, 10:49 AM
I don't know of anyone knowledgeable who thinks that the current SA (NOT the real government Springfield Arsenal) are better than Polytech. If you're concerned about the bolt issues reported on the interweb, have a usgi bolt installed and headspaced.

-hanko

SA warranty is better lol. Don't get me wrong, I have never had a problem with either of my SA M1as and they have been nothing but loads of fun. My gripe with SA now is that the prices of them have shot up so much with no improvement of the product... they got rails... Norinco has forged receiver, SA does not... at least justify some of the cost increase. Norincos can be found for extremely reasonable prices and given that it has a forged receiver is a great foundation for a NM type rifle.
Kevin

-hanko
06-22-2010, 11:17 AM
SA warranty is better lol. Don't get me wrong, I have never had a problem with either of my SA M1as and they have been nothing but loads of fun. My gripe with SA now is that the prices of them have shot up so much with no improvement of the product... they got rails... Norinco has forged receiver, SA does not... at least justify some of the cost increase. Norincos can be found for extremely reasonable prices and given that it has a forged receiver is a great foundation for a NM type rifle.
Kevin
I've remachined a few SA receivers just to get a mil-spec type scope mount to fit correctly:eek:...that shouldn't be necessary given Springfield's experience in making M1A's. With Norinco and Polytech they drop right in with no screwing around or modifications. I'm not too pro-rail, but ymmv.

Nice 4-Runner, btw.;)

-hanko

problemchild
06-22-2010, 12:03 PM
Gotta love the fact that you need to spend $6,000 to make them shoot under 1.5 inches.

Ahhh no thanks........

popeye4
06-22-2010, 12:05 PM
SA receivers are not mil-spec, but they are properly dimensioned in the critical areas (I would not consider a scope mount to be critical). Since they are cast, not forged, they have metal in places that a forged receiver wouldn't, due to material differences between cast and forged steel. I've built three M14 rifles (one each on SA, Fulton Armory/Armscorp, and MKS/LRB 1st run, that the BATF confiscated during the MKS fiasco), and the SA was the best as far as dimensions are concerned. I understand the Chinese receivers are about as close to mil-spec as one could get prior to LRB getting into the action. The Chinese receivers are a little funky with thread pitch and other details that a builder would have to deal with, but the receivers themselves are top notch. Fulton has a Chinese rifle upgrade service (at least they did) in which they'll take the crap off and replace it with good stuff. I'm sure other M14 'smiths, like Ted Brown, will do the same.

The OP wanted a 1 MOA rifle. In the M14 platform, that is pretty much a NM rifle. There are a lot of parts in motion when one is fired and they all have to be tightened up so they land in the same place at the same time with each shot. The military teams spent a lot of time and taxpayer dollars to figure out how to do it. One can drop the NM-tuned action into a Sage or similar stock to avoid the whole bedding issue (and get all the gizmo attachment points and doo dads), but being the purist that I am, I don't really see the point, there are better (and cheaper) ways to get that type of rifle. If one wants pure performance, there are better ways to go than the M14. But if you like the rifle, by all means get one and accept its strengths and weaknesses, they are fine rifles. I have two and want more! I am hoping an LRB is in my future..... :)

jtv3062
06-22-2010, 2:53 PM
Popeye isn't the castle nut the only thing that has the metric threads on the poly and norinco?
Are MKS and LRB linked on the reweld m14? I haven't read that the 2 are connected.

jtv3062
06-22-2010, 2:53 PM
Double post, Damn phone

russ69
06-22-2010, 3:10 PM
Gotta love the fact that you need to spend $6,000 to make them shoot under 1.5 inches. Ahhh no thanks........

Here's a SuperMatch, I think they are about 3K nowadays. Thank you sir, may I have another?

Thanx, Russ

problemchild
06-22-2010, 3:25 PM
Here's a SuperMatch, I think they are about 3K nowadays. Thank you sir, may I have another?

Thanx, Russ

If thats Iron sights at 200 Im impressed. If its a scope at 100 its like I said. $6,000 to be under 1.5 inches. Your target looks to be around 1.5-2 inches.

popeye4
06-22-2010, 4:17 PM
Popeye isn't the castle nut the only thing that has the metric threads on the poly and norinco?
Are MKS and LRB linked on the reweld m14? I haven't read that the 2 are connected.

Re: Chinese rifles. I'll have to go check, but I thought there was something about the sights and the barrel threads that weren't the same, either.

MKS originally did the reweld thing, then they contracted with LRB to make a forged receiver that was more "M14-like". It had the op rod dismount notch in the center and required the full auto parts to retain the op rod. That got the BATF interested because it was TOO close to M14 configuration. It got into the whole "readily convertible" argument. One would still have had to weld up some base metal and machine the stud onto the receiver to mount the selective fire parts, but BATF wasn't interested in logic. I had the misfortune of having one of those receivers for a short time. I don't believe they had the helix angle right, as it took forever to lap in the bolt lugs.

It did get LRB into the M14 receiver biz, though, so we did get a positive out of it. LRB corrected the issues with the MKS receivers and they have not looked back. I really want one of their receivers, but the backlog is centuries......

popeye4
06-22-2010, 4:25 PM
If thats Iron sights at 200 Im impressed. If its a scope at 100 its like I said. $6,000 to be under 1.5 inches. Your target looks to be around 1.5-2 inches.

That looks like an MR-31C target, which is the 600 yd reduced to 100 yd target. If it was shot properly (as in National Match Highpower rules) it would be in prone position, with sling, at 100 yds with iron sights. But without those details, it is hard to say. But even if it was from a bench with optical sights, it still proves what the gun can do. (I've found I can shoot my M14's better from prone than from the bench.)

The x-ring on that target is 0.7" across, the 10-ring is 1.7" across, and the 9-ring is 2.7" across.

And for $6000, you should be able to get two......

russ69
06-23-2010, 10:09 AM
That looks like an MR-31C target, which is the 600 yd reduced to 100 yd target. If it was shot properly (as in National Match Highpower rules) it would be in prone position, with sling, at 100 yds with iron sights.

That is right, shot in a registered match. The score is 99-3X. That's a tough little target and that's about as good as I shoot. The rifle shoots on call, and when the sights are aligned when the shot goes off, it's in the X-ring. YMMV.

Thanx, Russ

X-NewYawker
06-23-2010, 10:42 AM
I've had two Springfield NM and two SM rifles. With Federal 168 grain match, all four shot sub-MOA groups out of the box. As for the posts about the quality of SA parts versus Polytech, I would say that SA's warranty trumps the savings, and some internals from Sadlak like proper spring guide and gas piston will make it even better for just a few bucks.
http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p54/Fasanoland/Sadlakpiston.jpg
Also, the NM and SM barrels are excellent, the SM is a usually a Kreiger barrel, so you don't have to re-barrel your Springfield, and the Super Match s glass bedded.

I have personally owned over 20 -- twenty -- Springfield M1A rifles and one of their Garands. For scope mounting, the out of milspec receiver grooves as a pain in the ***, yeah, but for iron sights match work, the National Match and Super match are up there with the best. If I was ordering a gun for this use today, and could spend whatever I want, I would probably order a Fulton (my frind at THE AMERICAN RIFLEMAN just got one from Fulton and I was very impressed by fit and finish) or order an LRB first, to my specs, or if I did not want to wait and pay over $3K, just get the Springfield NM or SM out of the box.

I don't know where this constant myth that M1As shoot 2 inch groups comes from. Service grade, perhaps, but the National Match and Super match versions of these rifles will shoot close to bolt action accuracy (again, NOt with crappy ammo, but if you're spending over $2K on the rifle, you don't put Wolf in it.) If any of these three manufacturers sends you a rifle that won't shoot under MOA out of the box, you got a defective one and send it back.

popeye4
06-23-2010, 10:49 AM
That is right, shot in a registered match. The score is 99-3X. That's a tough little target and that's about as good as I shoot. The rifle shoots on call, and when the sights are aligned when the shot goes off, it's in the X-ring. YMMV.

Thanx, Russ

Yes, that target is a tough one, I think they are harder than the full size ones! At least at 100 yds the wind isn't a factor. That's good shooting.

popeye4
06-23-2010, 10:53 AM
I've had two Springfield NM and two SM rifles. With Federal 168 grain match, all four shot sub-MOA groups out of the box. As for the posts about the quality of SA parts versus Polytech, I would say that SA's warranty trumps the savings, and some internals from Sadlak like proper spring guide and gas piston will make it even better for just a few bucks.
http://i125.photobucket.com/albums/p54/Fasanoland/Sadlakpiston.jpg
Also, the NM and SM barrels are excellent, the SM is a usually a Kreiger barrel, so you don't have to re-barrel your Springfield, and the Super Match s glass bedded.

I have personally owned over 20 -- twenty -- Springfield M1A rifles and one of their Garands. For scope mounting, the out of milspec receiver grooves as a pain in the ***, yeah, but for iron sights match work, the National Match and Super match are up there with the best. If I was ordering a gun for this use today, and could spend whatever I want, I would probably order a Fulton (my frind at THE AMERICAN RIFLEMAN just got one from Fulton and I was very impressed by fit and finish) or order an LRB first, to my specs, or if I did not want to wait and pay over $3K, just get the Springfield NM or SM out of the box.

I don't know where this constant myth that M1As shoot 2 inch groups comes from. Service grade, perhaps, but the National Match and Super match versions of these rifles will shoot close to bolt action accuracy (again, NOt with crappy ammo, but if you're spending over $2K on the rifle, you don't put Wolf in it.) If any of these three manufacturers sends you a rifle that won't shoot under MOA out of the box, you got a defective one and send it back.

1 MOA or better is definitely expected in a match conditioned rifle. 2-3 MOA is expected in a standard, rack grade M14. The OP sounded like he didn't want a match conditioned rifle, but he wanted 1 MOA or better. I think match conditioning (and maintenance) is required to get there. And, as you point out, match grade ammo is required as well. But it can be done.

CrazyJeep
06-23-2010, 4:09 PM
Norinco RECIEVERS are highly regarded, the rest of the rifle not so much.

* Chi-com oprods are one piece forged units.
* Chi-com barrels are chrome lined and actually shoot well, however the bad thing on them is that the thread pitch is different on them.
* Some trigger groups can be good.

Everything else I'd scrap on them.