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My New M1A Project


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#1 Oldtrooper

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Posted 24 March 2021 - 07:57 PM

While most of my interest in firearms is from the Civil War to WWII I recently was bitten by the M14 bug. After talking to my son who was issued, and carried an M14 on his second tour in Afghanistan I decided I wanted an M14 style rifle.

 

Last week I purchased a new Springfield M1A. I tired to order an LBR M14SA but wasn't excited about the five month wait to get it, so I went with the Springfield Armory rifle available in a local shop. I am going to take the rifle as close cosmetically to its original form as I can. I will post photos when I am finished with the project.

 

I picked my sons brain about his opinion of the M14 as a battle rifle and he said there were pros and cons ... He carried a load of 10 magazines on his belt which he sad was pretty heavy, and he told me that the M14 was difficult to handle getting in and out of helicopters, but he loved the long range capabilities of the weapon. He also said that all of the army's M14's are now semi-auto only.

 

I'm including some photos of him with his M14 in Afghanistan ... Notice in a couple of images that he is using M1956 web gear with his rifle.

 

Attached File  M14.jpg   129.89K   22 downloads

 

Attached File  logtech 187.jpg   271.97K   23 downloads

 

Attached File  DSC_1585.jpg   206.2K   22 downloads

 

Attached File  logtech 182.jpg   107.93K   22 downloads

 

 

 

 

 

 


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#2 johnsonlmg41

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Posted 24 March 2021 - 08:36 PM

I love the platform and have several including the forerunner to what he's carrying.  The downside to that package is admittedly the barrel length and the earlier version had a shorter barrel.  Carrying 10 mags for a semi seems like a lot?  The good news is with that package you can ditch the bolt gun pictured and save some weight there!  LRB makes a nice receiver, but beauty is in the barrel, not the receiver.  I waited a year for a 5r barrel and that's worth it, but 5 mo for a receiver would be too much for me unless it was NFA! 

Cons.... you will spend a lot of money relative to other platforms but I thought it was worth it even though I have no "real life" experience with it as your son does.

My guess is your son had a ton of confidence carrying that over an M4 in wide open spaces pictured?  I'd be curious as to his thoughts and impressions? 


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#3 Oldtrooper

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Posted 24 March 2021 - 08:59 PM

I love the platform and have several including the forerunner to what he's carrying.  The downside to that package is admittedly the barrel length and the earlier version had a shorter barrel.  Carrying 10 mags for a semi seems like a lot?  The good news is with that package you can ditch the bolt gun pictured and save some weight there!  LRB makes a nice receiver, but beauty is in the barrel, not the receiver.  I waited a year for a 5r barrel and that's worth it, but 5 mo for a receiver would be too much for me unless it was NFA! 

Cons.... you will spend a lot of money relative to other platforms but I thought it was worth it even though I have no "real life" experience with it as your son does.

My guess is your son had a ton of confidence carrying that over an M4 in wide open spaces pictured?  I'd be curious as to his thoughts and impressions? 

He carried am M4 on his first tour as a mortar squad leader (11C) ... On his second tour he was made a sniper and issued the M14  here in the states. The air line flying them into Afghanistan somehow lost all of his (and 14 other soldiers) gear except for his rifle and one magazine, plus his M9 pistol. The only thing that the army reissued was his spotting scope. He had to make a private purchase of his rifle magazines from individual Marines, as the army had none to issue in country ... He also had to replace all of his web gear at his expense so he had me send him my old set of M1956 gear from home. He carried that many magazines because his team was often in the mountains for long periods hunting the mercenary Chechnyan snipers that were hunting coalition forces. They wore what at that time were sterile uniforms (Multicam) that they purchased with their own money. They had no insignia or identifying patches indicating that they were American soldiers while in the mountains. One of the other snipers on his team was equipped with a bolt action rifle.

 

Like I said earlier, for his line of work the 7.62x51 was far better than the 5.56MM. His second tour was cut short when he was wounded and medivaced to Qatar for surgery ... When that happened he lost all of the gear sent from home including a bayonet given to him by a Marine friend of mine who carried an M14 in Vietnam. At least he made it home safely if not somewhat worse for wear and now very cynical about our foreign involvement in the middle east.


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#4 TSMGguy

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Posted 25 March 2021 - 08:40 AM

We carried four mags in a pair of M14 magazine pouches many years ago, before the M16 came along. With a mag in the rifle, 100 rounds was plenty. The mags could be topped off at will. I saw only M14s set up for semi auto fire, never one with a selector switch. 

 

To my eyes the M14 looks funny all tricked out like that. Rather than looking like the purposeful tool of a trained rifleman, it looks like it was equipped by a committee of tinkerers. 

 

My guess is that M118 ammo is used today, rather than the M80 I remember. 


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#5 Oldtrooper

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Posted 25 March 2021 - 04:51 PM

We carried four mags in a pair of M14 magazine pouches many years ago, before the M16 came along. With a mag in the rifle, 100 rounds was plenty. The mags could be topped off at will. I saw only M14s set up for semi auto fire, never one with a selector switch. 

 

To my eyes the M14 looks funny all tricked out like that. Rather than looking like the purposeful tool of a trained rifleman, it looks like it was equipped by a committee of tinkerers. 

 

My guess is that M118 ammo is used today, rather than the M80 I remember. 

I asked him the ammo question and he told me that back 2005 - 2009 (His deployment years) that only sniper teams like his were issued M118 and regular infantry carried the M80


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#6 ranger1385

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Posted 31 March 2021 - 03:24 PM

It's nice to see they are still using the M-14!  I carried a M-14/21 in the ranger battalion in the mid 80's.  We used the M-14 during training and when there were real deal missions we took out the M-21's.  It's super reliable.  It is longer and heavier than the M-4, but I believe the 7.62 x 51 is a superior round.  Nice pictures, I'm sure your proud.  


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