A. Trigger housing
C. Magazine catch
D. Magazine catch spring
E. Magazine catch spring plunger
F. Safety detent plungers (2)
G. Safety detent plunger spring
H. Hammer spring J. Hammer spring plunger K. Hammer L. Hammer pin M. Trigger N. Trigger spring O. Sear P. Sear spring Q. Trigger pin
B. Firing pin
D. Extractor spring
E. Extractor spring plunger
ITo disassemble bolt, press in extractor spring plunger (E) with small screwdriver blade or similar tool and push extractor (C) up out of bolt (A) from bottom, taking care to prevent forcible ejection of compressed spring (D). Ejector and spring (G & F) and firing pin (B) are easily removed. Reassemble in reverse
2 Before removing front band (4), front band lock spring (4A) must be depressed as shown using tip of screwdriver blade or small punch. Slide the band forward until it is clear of the stock and of the handguard (17)
3 To separate barrel and receiver from stock, grasp stock in right hand as shown and lift front of barrel upward until the rear end of the receiver is free of the recoil plate (18) in the stock
4 Pull operating slide spring (9) and guide (10) to rear slightly until guide is clear of hole in slide (11). Move guide and spring to right as shown in order to clear slide and withdraw guide and spring to front, pulling spring out of its hole in the front end of the receiver
5 After removing trigger housing retaining pin (15), trigger housing (14) must be pushed forward until lugs at rear of housing are clear of slots in underside of receiver as shown
6 After disengaging lug at rear of operating slide (11) from retaining groove at right of receiver, move slide forward to position shown and rotate counterclockwise to disengage the lugs at the front of slide from the grooves in barrel as shown at "A" ■
By Thomas E. Wessel
not shown stock sling
ON Jan. 9. 1936, the U. S. Army adopted a semi-automatic rifle to replace the Model 1903 bolt-action Springfield which had been the standard U. S. Service rifle since 1903. The new rifle, designated U. S. Rifle, Cal. .30, Ml, was also adopted shortly afterward by the U. S. Navy and the Marine Corps.
The M1 rifle was invented and developed at Springfield Armory by Canadian-born John C. Garand, a civilian engineer who had been employed at the Armory since 1919. Garand's experience in the field of design and production was extensive. His initial design was a primer-actuated light machine gun which he developed at the National Bureau of Standards shortly after World War I. This gun showed such promise that Garand was transferred to Springfield Armory to work on development of a primer-actuated semi-automatic shoulder rifle. He subsequently designed a series of such rifles, but the one finally adopted in 1936 was gas-operated rather than primer-actuated.
Initial delivery of machine-made Ml rifles from Springfield Armory began in September 1937. As might be expected. early production rifles did not perform well in service but the majority of defects noted were due to slight but critical dimensional differences, not in accordance with the design, between the Service test models and the machine-made guns. These troubles were eventually corrected and it is a matter of record that the Ordnance Dept.
Barrel Lower band Lower band pin Rear handguard Rear handguard band Front sight Front sight screw Gas cylinder Clip latch pin Clip latch Clip latch spring
14. Ejector spring
16. Extractor spring
17. Extractor plunger
18. Firing pin
21. Trigger housing
22. Trigger pin
23. Trigger guard (old style)
24. Clip ejector
25. Hammer pin
26. Trigger/sear (old style)
27. Hammer spring housing
29. Slide and follower
30. Operating rod
31. Bullet guide
32. Follower rod
33. Hammer spring plunger
34. Hammer spring 45.
35. Buttplate screw, short 46.
36. Buttplate screw, long 47.
37. Buttplate 48.
38. Stock ferrule swivel 49.
39. Stock ferrule swivel screw 50.
40. Stock ferrule 51.
41. Butt swivel 52.
42. Front handguard spacer 53.
43. Front handguard ferrule 54.
44. Front handguard 55.
Operating rod catch
Operating rod spring
Follower arm pin
Gas cylinder lock
Gas cylinder lock screw/valve
1 Disassembly of ihe Ml rifle is accomplished by first pulling rearward on the trigger guard (23) and then out and away from stock. Entire trigger housing (21) and assembly will separate from rifle. Lift receiver (12) and assembly away from stock during this period endured criticism which was often partisan, to say the least.
Entrance of the United States in World War II resulted in accelerated production of the M1 rifle at Springfield Armory with corollary production by Winchester Repeating Arms Co. beginning in January 1941. By V-J Day (Aug. 14. 1945) a total of 4.028,395 Ml rifles had been produced, of which Winchester manufactured 513,582. During the Korean War additional large numbers of M1 rifles were produced by Springfield Armory, and by International Harvester Co. and Harrington & Richardson, Inc.
That the M1 rifle gave a good account of itself in every theater of combat in World War II is an accepted fact. Subsequent performance in the Korean War only emphasized its general excellence as a battle rifle.
Target shooting activities in the years since the Korean War have shown the MI to be a superior target rifle as evidenced by comparison of scores fired at all ranges with the 1903 Springfield and the fine National Match Mi's and accurized Service rifles in use today.
The Ml does have certain limitations which were emphasized during the Korean War. A primary criticism is its weight, which sometimes exceeds 10 lbs. when the stock is of dense wood. The system of en bloc loading with an 8-round clip is also open to criticism since a partially expended clip cannot be conveniently refilled during a lull in battle. Also the infantryman often needed greater magazine capacity when confronted with massed infantry attacking at close range, especially at night when aimed fire was impossible.
To meet the dual requirements of reasonable weight and increased magazine capacity, the Ordnance Dept. developed the M14 rifle which was adopted in 1957.
2 Disengage follower rod (32) from follower arm (48) by moving rod toward muzzje end. Remove follower rod and operating rod spring (49)
Next push out follower arm pin (50) from left side of receiver
Lift away bullet guide (31), follower arm, and operating rod catch (46)
6 Continue disassembly by pulling operating rod (30) to rear until rear surface of handle is directly under forward edge of windage knob on rear sight. Disengage guide lug on operating rod through dismount notch on receiver, with an upward and outward pressure on handle of operating rod. Remove bolt (19) by first grasping it by operating lug and then sliding it forward while lifting upward and outward with a rotating motion
8 Lift out ejector and ejector spring (14). Do not separate these parts. Remove firing pin (18) from rear of bolt
Reach down into receiver and lift out slide and follower (29)
7 Hold bolt in left hand so that left thumb is over ejector (13). Insert blade of a screwdriver between extractor (>5) and lower cartridge seat flange. Twist blade against extractor and unseat it. Ejector will snap up against left thumb. Remove extractor, extractor spring (16), and extractor plunger (17)
9 To remove clip latch (10), first depress it to remove tension of clip latch spring (11). Using a drift, push forward on clip latch pin (9—arrow) to unseat it. Withdraw pin and remove clip latch and clip latch spring
TO Trigger housing assembly is disas-sembled by first closing and latching trigger guard. Squeeze trigger (26) to permit hammer to go forward. With index finger on trigger and right thumb pushing against sear portion of trigger, drift out trigger pin (22). Lift out trigger and remove hammer spring plunger (33), hammer spring (34), and hammer spring housing (27)
Drift out hammer pin (25—left ar-row) and lift out hammer (28). Unlatch trigger guard. Using a small drift or punch, push safety stud from its hole (right arrow). Remove safety (20) from trigger housing (21). Swing trigger guard down to open position and slide it rearward until wings are aligned with safety stud hole. Rotate it right and upward until .hammer stop inside the right wing clears trigger housing base. Remove trigger guard. Place a screwdriver through lower hole in left side of trigger housing and pry clip ejector (24) upward and out
lO With a blunt screwdriver, unscrew ■ and remove the gas cylinder lock screw (52). Unscrew and remove gas cylinder lock (51). Next, remove gas cylinder (8) by tapping it lightly forward on bayonet stud with a piece of soft wood. Do not burr or damage the internal splines. On rifles with gas cylinders modified by a cut extending from front sight base dovetail downward to lower splines, it is necessary to loosen front sight screw before removing gas cylinder to prevent damage to barrel and gas cylinder
"I O Reassemble the rifle in reverse or-1 ** der. To reassemble trigger housing, first place clip ejector in position in trigger housing with short arm facing up and long arm in its slot at front end of housing. Position loop of clip ejector on top of its stud and hold it there. Hold long arm up in its slot and exert downward pressure on rear part of spring. Long arm will snap into notch on trigger housing base
14 Replace trigger guard, safety, ham-mer, and hammer pin. Assemble hammer spring housing, spring, and plunger as a unit. Place the plunger in its seat on hammer. Make sure that open side of spring housing is toward safety. Hold these parts in a raised position with left thumb and fingers. Insert trigger and trigger pin. Press forward on sear, and seat pin by pressing on its head
15 w^en reassembling bolt, first insert *** firing pin and then, with bolt face upward, place ejector and ejector spring into hole in face of bolt. Replace extractor spring and plunger. Put stud of extractor into its hole in bolt. Exert thumb pressure on extractor and. using a piece of hardwood dowel, depress ejector into face of bolt until extractor seats with an audible click ■
I obtained an Ml National Match rifle some time ago which looked good, but on examination I noticed longitudinal movement in the front handguard (this part should be fixed to the lower band in National Match rifles) and the trigger housing assembly was not marked with last four digits of the rifle's serial number as also required in NM rifles. Can these discrepancies be explained?
Answer: The explanation is not known. The following gives some past experience.
In 1966. Frankford Arsenal had occasion to employ five Ml National Match rifles in an ammunition test. They were obtained from Erie Army Depot. All five rifles were found to be out of National Match rifle specifications in at least one or another respect, most of them in several respects. In general, the rifles deviating least from specifications shot most accurately.
Inquiry of Springfield Armory, where Ml National Match rifles were assembled, brought the answer that the rifles never left the Armory in that condition. All National Match rifles without exception were inspected and tested, and had to meet the specifications completely before acceptance and shipment.
Erie Army Depot was the principal storage point for National Match rifles. It adjoined Camp Perry, and rifles were issued from the Depot for use in the National Matches and returned to store after the matches.
Both Springfield Armory and Erie Army Depot have been closed. There appears to be little likelihood now of ascertaining how the non-specification condition in Ml National Match rifles came about. Note however that National Match rifles were classified either as new or as used but serviceable.
It seems evident that the condition was in used rifles. Two possible ways it may have arisen are:
• Rifles were tinkered while on issue to individuals.
• Rifles returned after match use were reconditioned, but not to National Match specifications, before being put back in store.
Of course, other explanations also may be possible.
It is established that the condition does exist. The owner of an M1 National Match rifle who is interested in the most accurate shooting with it should therefore inspect it thoroughly for compliance with specifications. The construction and performance specifications of Ml National Match rifles were given by The American Rifleman in the detailed article "The Ml National Match Rifle", April 1966. p. 34-37. If deviations in an individual rifle are found, the correction usually is evident.
As a matter of interest, the application to Ml service rifles of target refinements corresponding to those of National Match rifles is described with illustrations in The American Rifleman article "Ac-curizing The Ml Rifle", July 1965, p. 30-33.—E.H.H.
By THOMAS E. WESSEL
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