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Posted: 12/30/2003 4:27:11 AM EDT
Last weekend (my wife is in Israel for three weeks and I am alone... ) I spent both Saturday and Sunday shooting with my H&R Garand at my usual range.

I really enjoyed getting everytime tighter groups. Last time I grouped three consecutive shots in 25 mm. Not bad for a service grade rifle...

While I was shooting, a guy told me that he had also a Garand he never shot, bought two years ago.

I went for lunch, and back to the range I found him waiting for me with a couple of loaded clips and a... GARAND M1D!

The M84 optic was in his original canvas pocket, the Garand was a 1942 Springfield refitted in late 1953 as M1D with a brand new barrel, the stock was dark but in mint condition.
1750 US Dollars.

I start to disassemble it to verify a couple of things and something was starting to make a bell to ring in my head... the drawing number on the barrel WAS WRONG!

Not sure, I when back home I took my "garand bible" the Canfield's book about Garands:

The part number for M1D barrels was completely different... this guy bought for THREE TIMES its price a normal (in very good conditions... I shot with this rifle tight groups only using the metal sights!) Garand because the vendor CERTIFIED HIM it was a genuine M1D!!!

Couldn't believe my eyes... now my doubt is if I have to tell him straight and plain he was fooled and his expensive rifle is a forgery, or to be more cautions and give him only some hints and let him do the rest of the job...
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 4:30:05 AM EDT
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 4:36:13 AM EDT
I know the M1D inside and out. Do you recall what was the drawing number on the fake barrel?

Usually it's the M-84 scope mount that gives it away, the reproduction check pad or marking on the stock in the wrong places.
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 4:40:25 AM EDT
I think I'd politely show him the book you have and make a point of showing him the part about the barrel markings. He should be able to put 2 and 2 together from there. I hate to see someone get ripped off when buying a gun. About a week ago I had the cash in my hand to buy a supposedly "pre-ban" Bushmaster AR. Fortunately I also had a special book with me which lists pre-ban guns by maker and serial number. Guess what? It WASN'T pre-ban! Glad I checked because some people will sell and tell you anything.

BTW, how much of a hassle is it to buy/own a gun and shoot it in Italy? I would assume it's registered, right? Special permits required? Restricted shooting areas? I always assume other countries are more restrictive than the U.S. about guns. But I could be wrong.....

Link Posted: 12/30/2003 4:43:52 AM EDT
actually, it might be a real M1D, just not one issued by the US Military. It could have been a USGI M1D or regular garand arsenal converted or rebarreled by the Danish or other european armies, especially given that the rifle is in europe. Remember, the M1 was an issue rifle with the Danish, Greek, and Italian armies among others and most garands in existance have had shot-out barrels replaced.
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 5:01:46 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Ramjet:
I know the M1D inside and out. Do you recall what was the drawing number on the fake barrel?

Usually it's the M-84 scope mount that gives it away, the reproduction check pad or marking on the stock in the wrong places.
View Quote

It is NOT the right one. The right one is D7312555 (if i remembered all correct... anyway the DN should start with D731...)

Bruce Canfield and also Scott McDuff said that:

Link Posted: 12/30/2003 5:04:15 AM EDT
Originally Posted By cduarte:
actually, it might be a real M1D, just not one issued by the US Military. It could have been a USGI M1D or regular garand arsenal converted or rebarreled by the Danish or other european armies, especially given that the rifle is in europe. Remember, the M1 was an issue rifle with the Danish, Greek, and Italian armies among others and most garands in existance have had shot-out barrels replaced.
View Quote

So they should be sold as, for instance: Italian Garand M1 TS (Tiratore Scelto, that is marksman...) and not as M1D.

Up to now I couldnt find anything about Drawing Numbers for barrels of Garand issued abroad.
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 5:12:04 AM EDT
There must be a hell of an industry in fakes of all kinds.

"Collectors" are a different kind of "Gun-Nut".

If you don't know the particulars about what you collect you can get screwed BAD!

Even the "Gun Culture" has its bottom feeders!
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 5:30:43 AM EDT
Canfield does have an excellent book on the M1 and M1 Carbine but the real expert is Scott Duff. His research on these rifles is deep.

I've always found it funny how the poor M1D is instantly dismissed as a fake because a certain number doesn't match or it doesn't have paperwork from the CMP. It isn't that simple.

The M1D has a confusing history. The question is what makes an "authentic" M1D? Who do you believe or should you even care if you enjoy the rifle? What is preplexing is this was a rifle with little or no documentation when it was created. Nobody appears know just how many of the M1D's were created, in service or what happen to many of them. As the years go by, more information pops to the surface on the M1D rifle.

To understand this rifle is to understand that it was assembled with no thought to its future "collectablity". Much like the M1 and the M1 Carbine, the M1D was assembled to do a job and parts were swapped in and out while in service. Then, toss in a few allied counties into the mix and the rifle gets interesting.

Some may disagree, but to follow the history of the M1D with any degree of accuracy is a challenge to say the least. Are there fakes out there? No doubt there are but you're going to have to dig pretty deep to figure it out.

To tell this guy flat out that he was hooked is a kick in the groin. Be sure that you have all your facts in place before you tell him. Pehaps it would be better for him to discover this on his own when you lend him your book.

I haven't priced a M1D in a long time but if this has the original scope mount, check pad and a nice M84 Scope, the $1750 he paid isn't that bad. A parts kit M1D (if you could find one) the last time I looked was around $1300. Heck, the original M1D mount on ebay can command $200. A CMP M1D I looked at had a final bid price of $7000. Think of that, $7000! You have to be pretty darn rare in my book to command $7000 dollars. I'd rather have a MP-40.
Link Posted: 12/30/2003 6:22:10 AM EDT
PaoloAR15. Here's something you can pass along to your friend at the range. It was written by Dick Culver.

   The question is often asked "how do I know if the M1D I want to buy is a genuine sniper rifle, and not a back room ‘put together’?" The answer(s) has many "what ifs".The judgement of what does and does not constitute a genuine M1D depends primarily on experience and the use of a little common sense.

    First let’s crank in what we know about the "real" M1Ds. We know that they were developed to allow their construction at the Depot (or lower) level, and to circumvent the "heat treat" problems associated with drilling and tapping the M1 Receiver for the G&H "lever-type" mounts. Unfortunately this also makes it more easily fabricated in someone’s shop or garage "armory". While some of the rifles may well have been assembled in the field under less than optimum conditions, the smart money says that most were assembled at a major Army rebuild facility.

    Those that were made (for instance) at Springfield Armory were quite probably WWII rebuilds. The ones that I have encountered were built/rebuilt (probably) at Springfield Armory in the very early 1950s (prior to Springfield having their rifle production line setup for producing the "Post WWII" M1s in the 4,2XX,XXX serial number range). These rifles usually have an early 1950s barrel (1951 is a common date, but not definitive) and will be appropriately refinished (if the rifle needed refinishing, some did, some didn’t). SA usually replaced the old stock with a new walnut number with a cartouche located in a spot that would be naturally hidden by the leather cheek-piece. Usually the cartouche is an "SA" over a letter or letters, such as "RA" or "F" with a sort of ¾ open bottomed box around the stamp... I have also seen early 1950s era Springfield Armory rebuilds that were NOT "Ds" with the same cartouche. Rifles rebuilt in the 1960s usually have the electo-pencil markings on the right receiver leg, and were furnished with stocks displaying the standard DAS cartouche (adopted in late 1953).

    The WWII rear sight will (usually) be replaced with the T105E1 version. In addition to the replaced rear sight, all of the WWII corrections will (most probably) have been instituted, such as the "relief" cut in the OP rod having been performed and the rifle being completely refurbished and refinished. The rifle will probably have a "high hump" gas cylinder lock, and will have a new (or refinished) gas cylinder that has been subjected to (dipped in) the potassium (or sodium) dichromate finish. It will no doubt, have the cruciform or "cross slotted gas cylinder lock screw" installed. If the conversion was done far from "chimney smoke" as the old saying goes, some of the normal "upgrades" may not have been accomplished. I would also not be too surprised to see a legitimate M1D with a lock bar rear sight or with a single slotted gas cylinder lock screw (there are a few die hards that feel that the single slotted screw is more conducive to "gilt edged" accuracy than the "poppet valve" type).

    If the rifle was a "used" M1D (as opposed to one of the CMP rifles that are virtually unused with new leather cheek pieces), the leather cheek piece will no doubt be stained dark, and the brass screws will have been installed to hold the cheek piece in place on the stock. You can expect a bit of verdigris (green stuff) to have formed around the brass eyelets where they come in contact with the leather (a conscientious soldier would have kept the leather well rubbed with neatsfoot oil – which will also eventually cause the leather to turn dark. Most of the M1Ds sold through the CMP come with "brandie, brand new cheek pieces"). The rifles that were returned U. S. Lend-lease will probably show lots of wear to the finish and to the bore.

    A rifle used in the Korean fracas would have probably been issued with the M-2 bell type flash hider, whereas the ones used into the 1960s may well be fitted with the T-37 Prong style. Even though the T-37s were technically available before the end of the Korea (Jan. ’53), don’t forget, it takes a while for new equipment to filter down to the troops.

    Trigger guards may be either of the stamped or milled variety, and I have seen both on legitimate M1Ds. A "D" is correct with either the M82 or M84 scope, but the M84 is far more likely. A "put together" D will probably be fitted with an M84 as they are far easier to find.

    One of the real "tip offs" is to pull the operating rod handle to the rear and read the writing on the side of the barrel. The normal everyday issue barrel will have the drawing number on the side of the barrel followed by the date. If the "D" you are looking at has a "drawing number"on the SIDE of the barrel, BEWARE!! Real "D" barrels have their drawing # on TOP of the barrel, not on the side. M1 D drawing numbers will have a "555" as a part of the number, and the barrel will have a small ordnance wheel stamped on the barrel just aft of the drawing # and slightly lower (this can vary, but the small magic wheel will be there). Unfortunately, you probably won't be allowed to "pull the handguard" unless you have money in hand - BUT before you actually fork over the cash, by all means, look at the top of the barrel. The quick and dirty trick however, is to check for a drawing number on the SIDE of the barrel - if it IS there, chances are that the rifle ain't an original D! Mine has a series of "Ps" (some right side up, and some upside down) on the side of the barrel that can be seen by retracting the op rod, along with the barrel date - but NO drawing number!  

    A certain amount of the ability to discern a fake M1D from the "real McCoy" is akin to witchcraft, it takes a bit of "bat wing" and "eye of newt" – they just "feel" right. On the other hand, there are some extremely "good" producers of scarce goods out there, and some of the fakes almost impossible to tell from the original! And of course, that’s part of the problem, there WERE no true originals, unless you count the "tool room" models put together at Springfield from scratch in WWII.

    Your best bet of course (unless you had a crooked Uncle who liberated one from the Korean War) is to acquire one with a CMP pedigree – this removes all the mystery from the equation. If you find one that looks right, contact an experienced M1 Collector to take a look at the rifle before you mortgage the farm to pay for your treasure.
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