View Full Version : The dream: M1a and hunting

Rustle in the Bushes
September 30, 2012, 05:05 PM
Anyone tried this? Seems a bit crazy, but I gotta say I'm intrigued- especially upon reading that some wackos even use it for elk hunting! Id be very interested to hear anyones tips on loads/bullets that would do the trick safely as well as ways to knock a few OZ off the rifle. especially elk loads. Im looking at picking up an 18.5" bbl model currently.

Please no "7mm rem mag is the minimum elk cartridge chatter". As far as m1a and elk there are definitely shot placement/range issues that I agree with- within 200 ish yards, quality bullet, and being capable of saying no to an unethical shot.

September 30, 2012, 05:52 PM
Back in the mid-60s dark ages when there still were only two regiments/USCC, we'd check out standard 150gr commercial hunting ammunition at Central Guardroom; grab our M14s from our room's rifle rack; and go deer hunting in the hills/training areas/ranges around West Point.

Sigh..... :(

150 & 165gr softpoints (if my ancient age remembers right)
Was good enuf' then.
Still good enuf' now.
4about anything.


Tucker 1371
September 30, 2012, 07:16 PM

200lb 11pt Ga deer with 165gr Hornady Superformance SSTs

Rustle in the Bushes
September 30, 2012, 08:46 PM
man....I shouldve thought about shooting the M1a lefty before I made this thread. that op rod would be right in my face in the case of some kind of failure. even though Im a careful reloader its really making me think twice. :confused:

Tucker 1371
September 30, 2012, 09:08 PM
I'm a lefty, doesn't bother me. In fact I consider it the best investment in a firearm I have ever made. It's a helluva lotta rifle for 1500 bucks

Edit: read and judged too quickly. I don't roll my own so idk how that will play out for you.

September 30, 2012, 09:55 PM
I would never hesitate to take my m1a hunting - in fact I did last year and killed 2 deer with it. 150 grain rem core locks did the trick just fine.

Remember, it's a 308.

It will kill big game. I'm sure plenty of people would debate about wether there were more suitable elk cartridges but heay, we debate all the time about 223 being enough fore deer and look how many it's killed. All about placement, although I would say personally, I would feel a lot better about a 165 grain 308 round at 200 yards on an elk than I would a 55 grain 223 round at 200 yards on a deer. Not trying to start anything, to each his own. Just my 2 cents.

On another note, I thought the "superformance" type ammo was bad juju in a m1a.

Nice buck by the way GSU, is that ticks its covered in. How early does yall's gun deer season start?

Tucker 1371
September 30, 2012, 10:10 PM
Word from Springfiled is Superformance is "ok" in modern M1As but not so much in old ones and Garands. I've only put 5 rounds thru it because the zero is almost the same as my 150gr plinking ammo.

Oct 20 this year, that deer was Oct 25 last year. And those are flies, it was about 11pm and 75 out so the flies gathered quickly. Thank you much sir!

September 30, 2012, 10:40 PM
The M1A/M-14 has more than enough energy to kill any North American game, with proper distance and shot placement. BC (Canada) regs for Bison (much tougher than elk) states:

7. ammunition to hunt bison must be constructed with a 175 grain or larger bullet, which retains 2,712 joules (2,000 ft lbs) or more energy at 100 m.

My 20" Savage PC .308 with Barnes 175 LRX @ 2655 fps has over 2000 ft/lbs at 200M and still has over 1100 at 600M (more than enough for deer). With over 1550 ft/lbs at 400M, a .308 is a great all around North American big game cartridge. Considering compound bow hunters are killing the largest game with 50-80ft/lbs [yeah, yeah, I know it's a little different but c'mon] I don't think there should be any problem taking elk/moose with an M1A/M-14. I hunted with one last year (got skunked) and the only downside was weight. With the new Blackfeather stock at www.M14.ca even weight won't be an issue. I handload with IMR 8208 XBR or IMR 4895 and have no problem. Also, with a semi-auto .308, you have a great self-defense weapon against even the largest brown bears.

October 2, 2012, 12:18 PM
.308 for muleys, whitetail and hogs... no sweat! I'd stay withing 250 yards for Elk myself but then my eyes don't allow me ranging past 300 anyways these days. The M1A is an excellent hunter. I use my Scout the most but this coming season I've built up a nice Standard that will get a chance to fill the freezer.

October 3, 2012, 07:57 PM
I've hunted with my M1A but never killed anything with it. I used a 180 gr bullet which is too heavy for the M1A because of stressing the op rod. Not wanting to risk damage to my gun I simply turned off the gas valve. The rifle can shoot anything then without damage but will not cycle semi-auto. It must be manually cycled but is ok because it functions like a straight pull bolt action then.

Remember to get a 5 round Mag for it!

October 4, 2012, 12:44 AM
I have shot a number of hogs with my Socom 16.......It's kinda fun to unleash 20 rds of mayheim on a group of hogs....:D