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Posted: 6/15/2015 10:07:24 PM EDT
I live just North of Tomball Texas, about 45 miles from downtown Houston.

Bought an M1 Universal Carbine from a relative to help them out.

It barely fires and doesn't chamber next rounds.

Anyone know of a smith that can help?

Thanks for any advice. I am sure it can be repaired, but, I would rather not try a thousand things...just impatient..LOL

Cheers all
Link Posted: 6/16/2015 5:33:47 AM EDT
How can a gun barely fire?  Do you mean it fires, feels like has insufficient recoil and therefore fails to chamber the next round?

First, make the sure rifle is completely clean and properly lubed.
What kind of ammo are you using?  Tula, and other steel cased ammo is known to be unreliable in the M1Carbine.
Even if it isn't steel cased ammo, try another brand of ammo.
Make sure the magazines are clean, and try a different magazine.  If you don't have one already, try a USGI magazine or even the newer 15 round, not the 30 round, Korean manufactured magazines should work fine.
If it is not cycling properly, the piston may be binding.  Ideally, you want it to slide in and out on its own, but not all of them do.  If it is really hard to move, it may have built up carbon.  You should be able to soak it and blow it out, and work it until it loosens back up.  If the piston is binding, it will rob much of the energy needed to operate the slide.

The rifle design is marginal by nature, so a lot of things can cause it to run crappy.  But I would check the basics before paying a gunsmith.  I would ask whoever you bought it from if it ever ran correctly.  If it did, you should be fine following the basics.  Some of those Universals never ran right, even when new.  If they can't assure you it ran good at some point in time, you may be wasting your time.
Link Posted: 6/17/2015 11:41:49 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
How can a gun barely fire?  Do you mean it fires, feels like has insufficient recoil and therefore fails to chamber the next round?

First, make the sure rifle is completely clean and properly lubed.
What kind of ammo are you using?  Tula, and other steel cased ammo is known to be unreliable in the M1Carbine.
Even if it isn't steel cased ammo, try another brand of ammo.
Make sure the magazines are clean, and try a different magazine.  If you don't have one already, try a USGI magazine or even the newer 15 round, not the 30 round, Korean manufactured magazines should work fine.
If it is not cycling properly, the piston may be binding.  Ideally, you want it to slide in and out on its own, but not all of them do.  If it is really hard to move, it may have built up carbon.  You should be able to soak it and blow it out, and work it until it loosens back up.  If the piston is binding, it will rob much of the energy needed to operate the slide.

The rifle design is marginal by nature, so a lot of things can cause it to run crappy.  But I would check the basics before paying a gunsmith.  I would ask whoever you bought it from if it ever ran correctly.  If it did, you should be fine following the basics.  Some of those Universals never ran right, even when new.  If they can't assure you it ran good at some point in time, you may be wasting your time.
View Quote




In addition to the above, keep in mind that around 1970, there was some French-made .30 carbine ammo that was corrosive primed.  This stuff would severally damage the gas system of the M1 carbine.  So if your carbine was ever fired with this ammo, this could be the cause of the problem.

(I have an old copy of Guns and Ammo dated 1970 and this French carbine ammo was advertised for sale)
Link Posted: 6/22/2015 4:52:47 PM EDT
The problem with Universal Carbines is... well universal. Many of them don't work and many have blown out the gas cylinders. On top of that, many of their parts are not interchangeable with GI.
Link Posted: 6/29/2015 10:37:26 PM EDT
My dad has a universal carbine that was supposed to be given to me a long time ago, but he doesn't want to let go of it. He doesn't shoot anymore, and hasn't for years, I know he doesn't clean or care for his guns, so I'm worried what kind of shape it might be in by the time he gives it up.

I remember from cleaning it as a kid that it is definitely one of the civilian ones, not one that uses gi parts. If there are issues with it, can they likely be fixed, or does the proprietary nature of the parts make any replacement/repair unlikely?

As I recall it was already having trouble cycling (gi mags) and the bolt hold open was unreliable.
Link Posted: 6/30/2015 12:02:29 AM EDT
There are several different  versions of the Universal carbine.  The latest one, which had dual recoil springs, and slide cam area for the bolt cam was open are supposed to be the worst ones.  The previous ones weren't too bad.  So, which one do you have, and exactly how does it not work?
Link Posted: 6/30/2015 8:16:32 AM EDT
Universal and Plainfield have had terrible reputations since the 70s ! They were a cheap copy of a really good gun.
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