View Full Version : What To Go With In An M1A

September 30, 2015, 18:16
My Son is in JROTC. He is currently on the rifle team. They are shooting air rifles and .22. His goal is to attend VMI upon graduation. I would really like to get him an M1A as that is the rifle they use at VMI.

I have seen a few standard grade walnut stocked Springfield Armory's. I don't want to get him a tricked out match rifle. What are some suggestions on what I should look at?

I have a basic understanding of the brands and models. Naturally I don't want to get him a SOCOM. Something that he can drill with and enjoy on the range.


John Crusher
September 30, 2015, 18:21
Low sn. with GI parts. Then upgrade the barrel.

September 30, 2015, 18:24
Get the basic Springfield Armory "National Match" model with wood stock.

Don't get the "Supermatch" model unless you want a chubby stock.

The National Match model looks very "correct" for an M14 specimen, but the thread-pitch on the sights allows for better adjustment, and accuracy.

I'm figuring Springfield Armory poses the pics on their website with the stupid reduced-capacity mags because much of their market these days is in areas that have banned the Stoner design.

The M1A is still an awesome representation of the M14 - even if short mags really bug me.
If you are in a free state, you can get all the normal-capacity mags you want, and use them in your M1A.


Mark IV
October 02, 2015, 05:29
Low sn. with GI parts. Then upgrade the barrel.

My only variations from this would be that if the GI barrel is in good shape, good TE/ME and good bore, I'd leave it alone, maybe NM front and rear sights, and definitely a Smith Enterprises extended bolt release.


There's one for sale in my AO for quite a while at $1,100 and no takers, so that should be a rough price point for you.

October 02, 2015, 09:34
Are you wanting him to learn to shoot, or must he specifically learn to shoot the M1A. Because as totally awesome you are for wanting to get him an M1A, if teaching him to shoot well is the goal. A good 10m Air rifle or .22 will go much further.

I've trained dozens of young people to shoot on a pair of Feinwerkbau 300S air rifles. The added advantage is doing it indoors, day or night. A high quality used air rifle that will put 10 pellets through the same hole at 10m is around $600. I paid $300 for my FWBs - the 600 appears to be the same basic rifle with a more ninja stock. Note - these are target rifles. They are shooting around 600 fps, which is optimal for accuracy. They are not the 1000+ fps "hunting" rifles and should never be confused.

Now nothing says you can't get him both . . . .

October 03, 2015, 17:54
Thank you all for the responses. Ed has been informally shooting and hunting since the age of 6. He is now 14 and is doing well on the marksmanship team. Out of a 600 he is shooting in the mid 400's. That's with a .177 pellet rifle.

His coach is an elderly guy who has been doing this since the 70's. He is well respected in the shooting community.

With that said the purchase of an M1A is two fold. One to get him accustom to handling it, breaking it down and drill. The other is to shoot. The coach wants to get him involved in service rifle competition in the spring. He also suggested the AR15 as a comp rifle so we will see how that goes. I have a nice HBAR if it goes in that direction.

I used an M21/M14 years ago. Naturally it was a military issue weapon. When I see TRW, H&R, Springfield Armory, Fulton Army M1A's I really don't grasp or know what the jest of that includes.

I know Springfield Armory makes a great product. Ed's coach told me the best place to pick up an M1A is at Camp Perry or Quantico during matches. I guess folks put them out for sale. I was in a local gun shop today and they had a service grade Springfield for $1800. That's kind of crazy since you can buy a new one for $1300. However, since not knowing the jest of all the USGI parts terms, etc that might not have been a bad price.

I did join the M14/M1A forum so perhaps some more reading/research is in order.

Again thank you all.

October 03, 2015, 18:01
WEG's advice in post#3 above is pretty solid for your needs.