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Posted: 8/2/2002 7:54:46 PM EDT
My next purchase will be a Springfield M1A. I can get a mil-spec one with the walnut stock for $1000 from a local shop, the "Loaded" model with a NM barrel, NM flashhider, NM sights and a NM trigger is over $1500. Ive heard from 4 people so far who say the NM barrel will last 5000 rounds if Im lucky since its not chrome lined. They all say I should just stick with the chrome lined mil-spec barrel. Im really leaning towards the mil-spec model right now since its so much cheaper and I go through 5000 rounds like its nothing. I would rather not have to buy a new barrel a couple months after I buy a new rifle. What do you guys think? Thanks.
Link Posted: 8/2/2002 8:14:57 PM EDT
"Back in the day" when I competed in NRA Highpower with the NM M14/M1A before switching to AR15's, we considered the life of a NM M14 barrel (non chrome lined, of course) to be about 5,000 to 6,000 rounds max. That's in the context of NRA Highpower when out of every 60 or so shots, only 20 were fired "rapid fire" and that was 10 rounds in either 60 or 70 seconds. If you shoot much rapid fire or long strings of fire when the barrel is hot I'd expect less.

Personally I think the "loaded" package doesn't offer much for the money. You can stamp "NM" on a turd but that doesn't mean it's worth anything. If the "NM" barrel on the "loaded" M1A is the thin profile and not heavy, it won't make a lot of difference to improved accuracy in my experience. Similarly, the "NM" trigger may or may not be really match quality, the "NM" flash suppressor is just tapered on the inside, etc. If it's not properly glass bedded, gas system unitized, etc., it's not a true national match quality rifle. NM sights, properly, are hand-fitted/lapped in by a gunsmith, not just slapped onto the rifle and I seriously doubt any fitting is done to the "NM" sights on the "loaded" package. It might shoot a bit better than a rack grade but not $500 worth, IMHO. If you're just planning on doing a bunch of fun shooting, I'd consider getting the standard walnut and paying a good gunsmith to glass bed it and tune the trigger. You may be surprised how well it shoots after that, and it won't cost much to have that work done.

Hope helpful,
John
Link Posted: 8/2/2002 8:15:46 PM EDT
How you clean and maintain that barrel will have a lot to do with its service life. You will probably start to see some loss of accuracy in that match barrel after 5000 or so rounds, but it probably won't be shot out. Lots of rapid fire that heats the barrel up will decrease your service life more than anything else, as will poor cleaning techniques. If it's just going to be a plinker and not a match gun, I'd get the GI model, as the chrome-lined barrel should last longer.
Link Posted: 8/4/2002 12:24:32 PM EDT
I have heard the same 6,000 to 7,000 rounds is what a NM barrel will last too.
Most people want these rifles to be semi auto sniper rifles and while i guess they can be,they are not in the same realm as a Savage or Remington tactical bolt rifle.
Unless your gonna do Service Rifle competition I think the standard M1A meets most of anybodys requirements for a Battle Rifle.
Link Posted: 8/4/2002 12:40:50 PM EDT
i picked up a M1A NM. fresh out of the box with proper break in it shot 3/4" - 1" at 100 yds.
3000-4000 round mark shot 1"
at the 4500-5000 round mark it shot 1.5" and i sent it back to springfield. After a new hart barrel it shoots consistant 3/4"
Link Posted: 8/4/2002 10:05:14 PM EDT
Take the same amount of money & buy a much more accurate rifle: AR-10. I could not believe the accuracy of my AR-10 when shooting it for the first few times. There's no BS mark up with bogus "NM" stampings or this stock or that stock. All Armalite AR-10s are true "NM" rifles.
Link Posted: 8/5/2002 8:24:07 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/5/2002 8:24:31 AM EDT by ECS]

Originally Posted By BobCole:
Take the same amount of money & buy a much more accurate rifle: AR-10. I could not believe the accuracy of my AR-10 when shooting it for the first few times. There's no BS mark up with bogus "NM" stampings or this stock or that stock. All Armalite AR-10s are true "NM" rifles.



This is what I did, got an AR10A4 flattop in 308 but I'll be dammed if I can get 1" groups with it.....could be the shooter though
Link Posted: 8/5/2002 10:55:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By BobCole:
Take the same amount of money & buy a much more accurate rifle: AR-10. I could not believe the accuracy of my AR-10 when shooting it for the first few times. There's no BS mark up with bogus "NM" stampings or this stock or that stock. All Armalite AR-10s are true "NM" rifles.



Except that you can't shoot NM (Service Rifle Matches) with them.
Link Posted: 8/5/2002 9:47:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ECS:
This is what I did, got an AR10A4 flattop in 308 but I'll be dammed if I can get 1" groups with it.....could be the shooter though



Not necessarly. Could be a bit of ammo not exactly NM standards. I bit the bullet last gun show & bought some NM .308 just to see how much the difference is.
Link Posted: 8/6/2002 5:39:05 AM EDT
DEpends what you mean by "how long it will last." The good match barrels will hold their match accuracy for 5000-7000 rounds. An earlier poster gave a good example with his going from 1" to 1.5" after 7,500 rounds, I believe. So, if you are in competition, that's your answer. If you are a shooter, say, between plinker and competition, you'll have a lot more life than that. The barrel is by no means "shot-out" at that point. It would have many more useful rounds. Frankly, since it would have loosened up, one could argue it would wear at a slower rate, lasting longer in proportion.

Good luck. Also, look at the FAQ on the Fulton Armory web site. He calims Krieger barrels, even with their cost are in reality more cost-effective.
Link Posted: 8/6/2002 8:34:16 PM EDT
I thought this thread dissapered, I couldnt find it...

Thanks for all the replies, thats just what I wanted to know. I was just curious more than anything, if I still get an M1A I will get the Mil-Spec model.

I dont really want to use for a semi auto sniper rifle, I just love M-14s. I fell in love with them the first time I shot one years ago, their just bad ass. Ill get a PSS in .308 later on.

Another question. Im big on plinking, will an M1A eat 7.62 surplus? If not Ill just build a FAL for my shooting pleasures... Thanks.
Link Posted: 8/6/2002 8:43:34 PM EDT
All of the M14/M1A's I've ever owned or used have fired more types of surplus ammo more reliably than the FAL's I've owned or used. Yes, an M1A should reliably feed good quality surplus .308. The Portuguese stuff Ammoman is selling is excellent.
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