M1 Garand

February 2011

A tale of two Garands

I can't remember when I first started lusting after a Garand. I suspect it was shortly after I joined Cape SAAACA and I was thinking of how to structure my Fields of Interest to get the guns I'd like to collect. In the end I could not find a theme that worked for me that included a Garand, so I stuck to collecting lever-action rifles, Spanish handguns and anything designed by JMB.

Then I started shooting IDPA, as an excuse for burning powder. Of course IDPA gives one a good reason to have a semi-auto rifle (in South Africa you need reasons to have guns, in case you havn't noticed). A Garand is not the best IDPA gun, but IDPA is a good reason for owning a Garand.

So, a Classic Arms auction came up, with two Garands listed, and I sent a buddy to go buy me one. He bought both.

Garand the first

Andrew had shown me this Garand the last time I was up in Witbank. Very nice side-scoped (M1C configuration) with flash hider, cheek piece and toolkit, made by Winchester, serial 1362431.

Yea, made by Winchester. In other words, not an M1C, but a standard Garand with the M1C stuff bolted on later. Not that that is an issue, I want to shoot IDPA, that's all.

But the side scope and I don't get along well. So I sold it on for a couple hundred rands less than I paid for it, seeing as I had...

Garand the second

I've had the bayonet for a while -- bought it at a previous auction, knowing that I'll have a Garand one day.

Being a vanilla Springfield made in June 1944.

To my untrained eye it doesn't look as if it's been shot a whole lot.

I was a bit concerned about the front hand guard being loose, but the guys on #gunblogger_conspiracy helped me out -- it's normal. You should be able to slip two business cards in there.

I bought a cleaning kit, pouch for the cleaning kit, clips, and a 6 pocket bandoleer off eBay. The bandoleer is from a Greek Spam can. Also, a friend gave me two original 5 pocket bandoleers.

Springfield Armoury rebarrelled it with a December 1964 barrel in January 1965 (I surmise, from the electric pencil "SA 1-65" on the receiver.

With the peep sights, 150 grain Privi Partisan ammo, relatively rapid fire, 50m target. I can probably do better than this if I concentrated.

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