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Old September 2, 2007, 12:22 PM   #1
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Join Date: February 9, 2007
Posts: 3,101
1944 M1 issue- clip is hard to load


I took my new (well, new to me at least) M1 Garand to the range yesterday

It is from the CMP, re-barreled in 1946 by the US Army, built in 1944. Made by Springfield. Service grade

I had an unpleasant surprise, loading my very first clip- the en bloc clip would not easily seat all the way into the internal magazine, so the action had a very hard time stripping off the first round

We stripped the rifle and inspected it. It was clean before I went to the range; I cleaned the barrel and chamber, made sure the firing pin worked, etc. hard to check loading action without putting home a clip, so I saved that until yesterday

Anyway, nothing obvious was seen as the culprit. We looked at another M1, a 1943 Springfield built rifle, and the lever the clip of ammunition rides can physically go further into the internal magazine on this other (known to be working well) rifle. My rifle would, for some reason, only allow the lever to travel to within about 1/8" of "bottom", so the clip must be pushed hard into the magazine, much harder than is normal, and even then the bolt will not move sharply forward on it's own, the action needs to be pushed forward

We looked at the receiver out of the stock, with no firing pin. Nothing could be seen blocking the clip. Inside of the stock is as smooth as any other M1's stock, nothing is sticking out of the wood and hindering the action. We also used the trigger group out of the other M1 in my rifle, no difference in operation

After checking that a round would indeed be engaged into the extractor, I commenced firing after loading it, full clip, as described above. After the first round, the rifle behaves flawlessly, and it shoots very well.

I'm not sure what's going on here; many parts in the rifle are new or appear new. The follower lever seems straight, I did not check it with a proven straight edge but it shows no signs of being bent

The follower rides an "L" shaped lever, and it seems as if this part might need to wear in, or that it, or the follower arm needs to be taken down 5 thousandths of an inch or so, to allow the clip to be inserted normally. This would allow the lever to pivot further on the fulcrum, allowing the clip to go all the way into the magazine. I have not done any work to the rifle yet

By the end of the day (I fired close to 200 rounds), the action would...slowly....manage to strip off the round...eventually, but I smacked the lever forward with my palm to make sure the round was in the extractor. It was perhaps a 3 second process, if you watched the rifle do it by itself after the clip was loaded. I also single-shot the rifle a few times to check functionality. No issues single-shotting the rifle

I wonder if anyone has experienced this? My first impulse is to take it to a gunsmith. Does anyone know of one in the Norfolk County, Massachusetts area?
Chris_B is offline  
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