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View Full Version : Proper grip of M1A / M14 ?


9mmMike
October 18, 2004, 11:13 AM
Pardon this novice question but what is the correct way to grip an M1A?
I am especially interested in the foregrip as there is a moving part on the right side that looks like it could slice up your hand quite easily.
Does one hang onto the sling or what? It just seems like it would be easy to hurt your support hand on this weapon. I read/hear about M1-thumb but I do not recall ever hearing about this so I am guessing that it is some fundamental easy-to-answer thing that I am missing.
Thanks,
Mike

AZ Jeff
October 18, 2004, 01:25 PM
The "part on the right side" is the operating rod. The M14 and it's analogous cousins the M1 Garand, M1 Carbine, and Ruger Mini-14 all have a similar operating rod in the same location.

Although at first look it would appear to cause the operator to get his hand tangled in the op rod when it moves, in practice I have never heard of anyone getting hurt by the op rod when shooting the rifle normally.

"M1 Thumb" is NOT caused by the operating rod. It's cause during LOADING the rifle, when the shooter inserts the en-bloc clip of ammunition into the top of the magazine well in the reciever, and gets his/her thumb pinched by the bolt during it's closing.

For an explanation of how the M1 is loaded, and other aspects, see the Army Field Manual for the Garand at this site:

http://www.biggerhammer.net/manuals/garand/m1.htm

9mmMike
October 18, 2004, 03:17 PM
Thanks for that great link. I have also never heard of anyone getting hurt by the op rod but when I pick up my M1A, my finger-tips always seem to wind up there.
I am still not too sure why a person would not get fingers sliced on the op-rod. I did not see in that link (which I'll be printing for the other good data) where to grasp the forestock.
Do you train to hang onto the sling or use the front sling swivel as a guide to put your hand ahead (long reach) or crammed up right behind?
Thanks,
Mike

AZ Jeff
October 19, 2004, 11:05 AM
I have shot a bazillion rounds through M1's and their analogs. When I am postion shooting, I will be using a sling and a glove, so my hand does not really wrap around the forearm that much.

When I am shooting casually, though, my hand DEFINITELY wraps around the forearm, and often touches the operating rod. In all my shooting, I have never been hurt by the op rod. (Come to think of it, I cannot say I even feel the op rod move when I am shooting, but I know it does..... :rolleyes: )

Jamie Young
October 19, 2004, 12:06 PM
I noticed the exact same thing the first time I fired your M1A. It scared my left hand but it didn't hurt. :eek:

9mmMike
October 19, 2004, 02:23 PM
Well I'll be packing it up to the PA shoot on the 30th so I can practice some more. I will see if I can find a good hand position. My problem is that I tend to try to avoid the rod and then I do not get a good grip and the muzzle rises as I shoot.
I guess it's just a matter of practice practice practice.

Thanks again,

Mike

Jamie Young
October 19, 2004, 05:15 PM
You are use to pumping a shotgun.