M1 Carbines are a ton of fun to shoot for everyone! I love my pristine '43 NPM with high wood and a great barrel that I've had for almost 40 yrs but always have been hesitant to shoot it because of it's excellent condition. Recently I found out it's worth over $1,400, so I decided to retire it from service to to to my son's collection some day.
I went looking for a decent shooting replacement, not interested in collector value, just a good shooter and all I found at the $600 - $700 level were worn out beaters. After looking and looking I finally gave up and checked out a new Auto Ordnance M1 Carbine.
I decided that a new in the box commercial carbine for $628 delivered was better for my purposes than a worn out GI version so I ordered one from Bud's guns in Feb. After I got it and swapped out the rear flip sight for the later, adjustable type II version, I took it out to the range and let 'er rip. Turns out that the chamber and barrel are nice and tight on this one and with the type II rear sight this carbine is really accurate!
One of our younger CMP regulars with good eyes cranked off a 2" group at 100 yds with it. 2" group with a carbine at 100 yds? Almost unheard of!! Further, I've had no problems with it feeding, cycling, or extracting in almost 900rds so far. Best of all, I can shoot the snot out of it and not worry about damaging a piece of history. To say I'm pleased is an understatement!!
My '43 NPM Red Rock Armory Rebuild on top and the new AO on the bottom:
BTW, this retiring collector grade rifles is expensive. I also retired my HRA Correct Grade M1 Garand I've had for only a year and got a Springfield Special Grade M1 Garand that I received last Thursday. The Special Grade is a completely rebuilt rifle with new CMP stock (great figuring) and a new Criterion chrome lined barrel.
They are brand new rifles using mostly NOS parts and/or very low round count ones. I couldn't find any parts on his that show any wear even under the newly parkerized finish. My son and I took it out yesterday (Sunday) and broke it in. He was able to hit a bowling pin off the bench with stock sights at 300 yds with it! (Oh, to have 27 yr old eyes again.)
Our Springfield Special Grade:
Our Retired HRA: