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Old September 23, 2009, 12:37 PM   #24
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Join Date: August 11, 2009
Posts: 619
Heavy loads, or loads at the wrong end of the pressure curve are know to have bent operating rods in M1 Garands, and have the potential to do the same to the M1A.

As far as I know the m1a does not have this same issue as the M1 garand. There is a gas bleed off valve at the end of the piston to release any excess pressure. The Garand and the M1a may look similar, but its the piston in the m1a that drives the op rod and not the op rod that drives itself. Once the piston gets driven down all the way the pressure bleeds off through the valve. I have never heard of anyone that has bent a m1a op rod. Thats not to say that it wont happen, but I doubt that there are any commercial loads that will hurt your rifle. I handload my own but I would not hesitate shooting store bought stuff through mine if I didn't care about the accuracy. My Loaded shoots about 1/2" with my home made m118LR rounds. I have taken mine out hunting here in Idaho, and I will tell you that it was heavy but any rifle is heavy when you are literally climbing up and down mountains.

If you shoot bullets that are over 165gr you need to tweak the gas system. Sadlak offers a grooved piston for this. You need to check headspace to be sure you are safe for both 7.62 and .308.
This may be true with the socom rifle as it wont shoot the 175 grain bullets that I shoot from my Loaded. But my loaded shoots them wonderfully!
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