A M1 Garand? Yes, a honest to God M1 Garand, a true rifleman's rifle. Probably going to take a day off of work and drive up to Camp Perry and get one this week.
Why? Well, here are some reasons:
- I have been lusting after a Springfield M1A ever since Appleseed last year when I was able to hit a steel plate a 500 yards with one. the M1 is the predecessor of this rifle and is just as accurate as the M1A at that range for about 1/2 of the price. For what I want to use it for it is more than adequate to fill that role.
- Its a piece of history. I am going to buy one through the Civilian Marksmanship Program up at Camp Perry. It will most likely be a reconditioned service rifle (if I can get one) that may have served my country in WW2, korea or even Vietnam. Now THAT would be cool. Even if I get one that wasn't used in actual combat, just having one brings a chill to my body anyway.
- It is a beautiful rifle. Long sleek lines, solid, wood and metal fused together with the rifleman to produce a single harmonious unit.
- Its an M1 Garand for crying out loud!
Again, I am getting the rifle through the Civilian Marksmanship Program, or CMP, up at Camp Perry, Ohio. The CMP program seeks to accomplish 3 primary goals in its mission:
- To instruct citizens of the United States in marksmanship.
- To promote practice and safety in the use of firearms.
- To conduct competitions in the use of firearms and to award trophies, prizes, badges and other insignia to competitors.
Now part of the way they do this is to offer surplus US military firearms to qualified civilians at or below market value. When I say qualified I mean you must belong to a group identified by them as promoting marksmanship and the shooting sport. They have a list of over 2,000 organizations, including veterans organizations, that qualify for purchase. I am a military retiree so that is how I am going to qualify. Prices start at around $495 for field grade rifles and go up from there. They have a full explanation of their grading system on their web site so I am not going to go into any detail here. I will say that from doing some research on the web a great many people are very satisfied with their purchases and that the grade of rifle they received was above what they thought that they were paying for. Flat rate shipping is around $23 and you only have to pay sales tax if you are an Alabama or Ohio (bummer for me) resident, since these are the locations of the two retail stores that they ship from.
CMP M1 Garand Page, links on the left to the main site and all relevant info..
In addition to M1 rifles they also have other surplus items to purchase:
- M1 Carbines (my next purchase?)
- 1903 Springfield Rifles
- .22 target rifles
- surplus Ammo
- Rifle accessories (cleaning rods and such)
- other misc. items as they become available.
I am really looking forward to getting a piece of history in the gun safe this week. I got rid of my Mauser K98 because it had become a safe queen and I had no connection to it. the M1 may find itself in the safe a lot (due to the price of .30-06 ammo) but it is the rifle that my preceding Infantrymen carried into battle and that is very cool....
YouTube click from The Military Channel's Top 10 Battle rifle show....