View Full Version : M1 Garand Problem

February 18, 2009, 08:43 PM
My garand has been having an issue with light strikes on primers recently (ive owned the gun for 3 years and have had no problems). Almost every clip i put in there, there is atleast 1 light strike that doesnt cause the round to fire. It usually happens on the second or third round of each clip. I might also add that it once double fired on me during one of these shooting sessions. I've cleaned the gun, taken it apart, ive used atleast 10 different types of ammo- from milspec in preloaded clips to hunting ammo....the same result....1 light strike for every 8 rounds. I was wondering if anyone had any ideas (other than going to a gunsmith just yet) what could cause this problem. I was thinking of replacing some of the firing pin springs and possibly the firing pin itself.

February 18, 2009, 08:56 PM
Sounds like it isn't locking up completely. Try one of the Wolf extra-power op-rod springs. Keep the op-rod bolt lug cutout lightly greased.

If it doubled it is likely the second round in the string was a slamfire. You want to check that the safety bridge in the receiver isn't bent. Check the lengths of your bolt and firing pin.

If the round that slam-fired was a handload, it was probably not the gun dimensions but a high primer. Check that your primers are below flush with casheads always. About 0.004" below flush is ideal. The primer seater built into the Forster Co-ax press is perfect for Garand ammo because it forces that condition to be true. You can also use CCI #34 military hardness spec primers for added insurance.

Old Guard Dog
February 20, 2009, 08:11 AM
You can also get a double-fire if the gun is not held tightly against the shoulder, and you are slow to release the trigger. I remember in infantry training, we used to put the butt of the M-1 rifle against our stomachs, and pull back on the trigger, and if you do it just right, your stomach muscles bounce rifle forward, and you'll blow a whole clip like a full auto. A double fire happened to me once later in life during a service rifle competition, and I think that is what happened.

February 20, 2009, 09:16 PM
That is a little misleading. The Garand trigger mechanism carefully prevents mechanical doubling of the gun itself. If the trigger mechanism itself could be tripped up to fire off a clip by how quickly you let go of it, that would make the Garand illegal to possess without a class III permit. Mechanisms known to multiple fire, even against original design, are treated as Class III under regulations so that people aren't tempted to intentionally make their guns "defective" to get around the regulations. What actually happens in belly fire is the the weapon cycles normally and chambers a round and is cocked, but the elastic nature of the surface it is recoiling against lets it push back behind the trigger finger far enough so the trigger goes far enough forward that the sear lets go of the rear hammer hooks of the cocked hammer and is ready to be pulled to fire again. When the belly bounces back out it pushes the whole rifle forward against the trigger finger, so the trigger is actually pulled again. It's still semi-auto fire, but just fast. I think most any semi-automatic rifle or shotgun could be made to do the same thing if the belly tension and the depth of flab and trigger finger were just right, except a very mild recoiler (say, a .22).

T. O'Heir
February 20, 2009, 10:30 PM
"...once double fired on me..." Likely a high primer. Possibly caused by not following through on the shot. Releasing the trigger too soon and the trigger getting pulled again under recoil. Usually happens when shooting off a bench.
"...I've cleaned the gun..." You clean the inside if the bolt too? Sounds like something inside the bolt is causing the firing pin to hang up briefly. It doesn't take much crud to slow the FP enough to cause a misfire. Have a look at the firing pin hole in the bolt face too. The FP should come through it easily with gravity.
There's no firing pin spring to change.

James K
February 20, 2009, 11:43 PM
How do the primers look that did fire? Any sign of light strikes, or are they normal? If so, the problem is probably not the hammer spring.

Is the misfired round always the same one (1st, 3rd, etc.)?

Will a primer that did not fire on the first strike fire if tried again?

Also, did you clean the chamber carefully to make sure there is nothing in there that could stop a round from fully seating?


February 22, 2009, 02:56 PM
Also on the double fire:

If you ever so slightly squeeze the trigger to "pull off a round" You can get double and triple firings. This is typical.
The M1 Garand is not a precision type rifle and was never meant to be. Squeeze that trigger a hair bit quicker and then see if you are continuing with the same problem.

Double J
February 24, 2009, 10:50 AM
I recently ran into a similar problem with one of the VFW rifles. Turned out the gas block was covering the vent in the barrel. I made a shim for it and all goes well now.