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How to pick out a CMP Garand

These are the things I look for when purchasing a Garand Rifle:

At the CMP Store, they will let you borrow the muzzle and throat gauges, if you give them your Driver's License.

1. Barrel:
a. Be sure the muzzle has no chips or dings in it. THe muzzle gauge should measure 2 or less.
b. The throat gauge should measure 5 or less.

2. Stock:
a. The trigger group should lock up tight.
b. For the best accuracy, the barrel group should have some upward pressure against the forearm at the lower band. This means the barrel will return to the same place in relation to the stock after each shot. This is how glass bedded rifles improve accuracy.
b. Grab the grip of the stock with one hand and the upper handgaurd area with the other hand. There should be no forward and bacward movement between these parts of the rifle.
Sights:
a. Raise the rear sight aperture to the top and press on the aperture. If it goes down (or falls), turn the elevation knob so the sight is all the way down. On the right side of the sight take a small screwdriver and turn the split screw clockwise. You will feel the screw snap into another notch in the windage knob. Then try elevating the sight to the top. Press on the aperture and if it falls again, turn the screw on the windage knob another increment and do this until the aperture will not fall when pressed on. Once this is done, try the windage knob. If it won't turn, that means the ring spring in the elevation knob is either worn out or broken. You will need a new elevation knob to fix it and they are about $50.

Also, I have always had my rifles shipped to me. The shipping is $22.95 and the tax is 8 to 9% at the CMP stores

I hope this will help some of you going to the CMP Stores looking for an M1 Garand.

Doug Bowser
 

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Re: How to pick out a CMP Garand

Thanks Doug. I still learn valuable info from you after all these years.

.
 

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Re: How to pick out a CMP Garand

jbpmidas said:
Are the guages idiot proof? How do you read them?

(I have never laid eyes on one.)
Less is better is all you need to know!

Here is TE, Throat erosion. The numbers roughly represent thousands rounds fired. In this example, TE is about 2.5.



Here's MW, or muzzle wear, it this case a 2.



There was a company, Stone Axe Engineering, that made the gauges for sale but they have since gone out of business. The throat erosion is M1 Garand specific! If I recall correctly you could look through the gas escape hole on a 1903 or 03A3 with a gauge for a Garand, but my memory isn't what it used to be. Just remember results for TE will not be valid for other rifles!

Muzzle wear is what it is though and is consistent with all .30 cal barrels. In a pinch, there is a redneck muzzle wear gauge. Take a USGI M2 ball round and insert it in the muzzle. If new it will show a quarter inch, and if it "swallows the bullet", that is the cartridge stops when the case neck hits the muzzle, I'd pass unless I needed a tomato stake. Sometimes rifles were counterbored to clean up bad muzzles in which case the above tests don't apply.
 

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Re: How to pick out a CMP Garand

Good info from PhillipM ... If you go to the South Store to purchase a Garand, most will have a tag already on them indicating the Throat Erosion and Muzzle Wear on the tag. I have check several while at the store with my StoneAxe gauge and found the CMP numbers on the tag to be very close - in most cases they measure them to the next higher number, .i.e. 1.5 is usually recorded as a 2 on the tag. The South Store will let you borrow a guage if you ask. They will ask for your driver's license to hold until you return the guage. The only guage they have (to the best of my knowledge) is one to measure muzzle wear -- they also sell the guage there if interested.

Here is a picture of one of the tags that was attached to a Garand I purchased - along with the CMP muzzle wear guage they will let you borrow ...

 

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Re: How to pick out a CMP Garand

Doug, Garand & Phillip;

Thanks for the great info, I'm trying to get up to the south store in June when I get back CONUS. Now I won't feel like Mongar, the village idiot, while I'm there.

Cheers,
Breeze
 

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The gauge readings measure barrel wear, and you can generally expect decreased accuracy with higher wear numbers. The highest readings are around 10 IIRC. The gauge readings really don't reflect gun safety.
 

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How to pick out a CMP Garand

These are the things I look for when purchasing a Garand Rifle:

At the CMP Store, they will let you borrow the muzzle and throat gauges, if you give them your Driver's License.

1. Barrel:
a. Be sure the muzzle has no chips or dings in it. THe muzzle gauge should measure 2 or less.
b. The throat gauge should measure 5 or less.

2. Stock:
a. The trigger group should lock up tight.
b. For the best accuracy, the barrel group should have some upward pressure against the forearm at the lower band. This means the barrel will return to the same place in relation to the stock after each shot. This is how glass bedded rifles improve accuracy.
b. Grab the grip of the stock with one hand and the upper handgaurd area with the other hand. There should be no forward and bacward movement between these parts of the rifle.
Sights:
a. Raise the rear sight aperture to the top and press on the aperture. If it goes down (or falls), turn the elevation knob so the sight is all the way down. On the right side of the sight take a small screwdriver and turn the split screw clockwise. You will feel the screw snap into another notch in the windage knob. Then try elevating the sight to the top. Press on the aperture and if it falls again, turn the screw on the windage knob another increment and do this until the aperture will not fall when pressed on. Once this is done, try the windage knob. If it won't turn, that means the ring spring in the elevation knob is either worn out or broken. You will need a new elevation knob to fix it and they are about $50.

Also, I have always had my rifles shipped to me. The shipping is $22.95 and the tax is 8 to 9% at the CMP stores

I hope this will help some of you going to the CMP Stores looking for an M1 Garand.

Doug Bowser
Just a small update to some very good advice.

Store at Talladega Range has 7% sales tax. Anniston is 9%. 2% difference can save $20 on a $1000.
Talladega has a great selection most of the time and you are right there at the range, your get 2 hours at the range free with gun purchases and their range officers will gladly help you get it zeroed and teach you the basics.
I like the field grade models with a new Criterion barrel and new walnut stock for $650. I've bought Service grade and field grade and they shoot about the same. Quite accurate.
 
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