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This is a discussion on BRAND NEW SOCOM 16 FAILS OUT OF THE BOX within the Modern M14 forums, part of the M14 M1A Forum category; Purchased my brand new SOCOM 16 Two weeks ago from a Connecticut gun exchange. I live in CT so it takes an act of GOD ...

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Old October 25th, 2016, 10:12 PM   #1
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Purchased my brand new SOCOM 16 Two weeks ago from a Connecticut gun exchange. I live in CT so it takes an act of GOD to find someplace to go shooting. Especially a long gun! Yesterday I loaded up the supplied SA 10 Round Mag and attempted to chamber and eject all ten rounds just to test the action. FAIL!

With a full 10 round SA magazine inserted on a closed bolt, I can NOT even get the bolt back to chamber a round. Trust me,,, I tried. If I remove ONE round from the magazine, the bolt is able to cycle by hand but, its not as smooth as it should be.
I switched to a SA 5 round magazine. I CAN NOT get the SA 5 round magazine to insert into the receiver with the bolt closed. If I lock the bolt back, I can insert the Mag and then let the bolt go and it will chamber but it still takes a lot more effort to move the bolt than it should.

Once I chamber a round and attempt to eject it, the round stays inside the chamber and I get a double feed. I have had the bolt grab and eject a round or two but it fails to eject more than it ejects normally.

If I fully cycle the bolt and cock the hammer (empty chamber no mag) and pull the bolt about 1/2 way back, the bolt has a LOT of lateral slop. Enough to make me wonder if something is seriously wrong with the bolt or the receiver machining. Do any of your bolts have any excessive SLOP in that area????

I know guns need to be broken in, but this is way more than that.

I'm pissed but more let down that a brand new SOCOM, out of a sealed box has this many issues and I have NOT even fired a round out of it yet. SAD!

Please give me your thoughts and recommendations. I plan on contacting the gun exchange where I purchased it from tomorrow and see what they say. The damn Gun Store is 60 miles from my house.

The other option is to contact SA and see what they say and most likely Ship it back to Springfield. Its just a paperweight as it sets.

Thanks for listening!



Thanks to all of you guys knowledge and recommendations, I oiled up the extractor and ejector with a little oil, wiped it down, reduced the rounds in each mag by one and it seems to be running a lot better. It feeds and ejects better now but its still not perfect.

I really need to slam some rounds down range and get her loosened up.

THANK YOU for all your support.


Last edited by FIRECONTROLMAN; November 4th, 2016 at 09:31 AM.
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Old October 25th, 2016, 10:48 PM   #2
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My first thought about you manually cycling and getting a double feed is that you're riding the oprod/bolt forward versus letting it fly - so the extractor isn't grabbing the rim like it's supposed to and won't eject the round when you're cycling it.

Why are you trying to load a full mag when the bolt is closed? I don't think I've ever tried doing that and I don't really see the point.

Regarding the slop, I have no idea. Without knowing exactly what you're speaking of, it is likely normal as this is a battle rifle in every sense of the term and it's never been mistaken for the rolls royce of firearms.

I'd hardly call it a failure considering you haven't even tried firing it. Hang in there...get to a range and fire it!

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Old October 25th, 2016, 10:55 PM   #3
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Strip/Clean/Lube your gun. If you have trouble watch Tonyben`s video and then take your rifle to Blue Trail Gun range in Wallingford and shoot it there. They have a 100 yard range and its $33 for unlimited time. It`s the best place unless your part of a gun club.

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Old October 25th, 2016, 11:57 PM   #4
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Inserting a full mag on a closed bolt is almost impossible with a ten rounder. Lock the bolt back then chamber a round. You will have better luck.
M14's are violent in their forward recoil impulse and to repeat what has been said above, let her fly. Sounds like the extractor isn't being engaged.
The slop is totally normal. It makes the gun reliable but also points to the dynamics and design of the rifle. It's bolt is on a bearing. The bearing sits in a channel. It's tolerances are not nearly as high as an AR's bolt.
I'm sure you will have zero problems once you get out and shoot her.

Good luck.

P.s. Don't be discouraged. She will shoot just fine.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 12:00 AM   #5
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A full mag should seat fully with the bolt closed.

Thanks from delong31

Last edited by Sniper_M-14; October 26th, 2016 at 12:01 AM. Reason: spellcheck
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Old October 26th, 2016, 12:22 AM   #6
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Sometimes the new polymer stocks from springfield are very tight in the magwell this might also cause a problem with getting that 5 rounder into place.

As others have said the gun we really designed to take a mag from the open bolt or stripper clips from the open bolt. In fact most semi auto mag fed rifles are really designed for this method of loading instead of bolt closed.

Don't get discouraged in your new rifle, there is a little bit of s learning curve with these rifles but as others have stated look into TonyBen's YouTube videos and he will walk you through the disassembly and assembly process. Good luck and keep us posted.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 01:04 AM   #7
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The 5 and 10 round magazines are commercial designs intended to be loaded with an open bolt. Original USGI 20 round mags can usually be loaded with a closed bolt, but it can be made easier by only keeping 19 rounds in them.

The M14 bolt has a good deal of "slop" in its movement, compared to a closed design like the AR15.

Always pull the bolt completely to the rear and let go. Never ride it forward if you want it to lock into battery.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 02:02 AM   #8
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Hey let us know how it works out. What part of the state are you in? I can see if we have openings. Out to 400 yards and VERY reasonable. Blue trails is okay but private clubs are usually better.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 02:24 AM   #9
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For 10 rnd mag, I always only load 9. For 20s I load 18 as we were taught in the 60s when issued to us in the Marine Corps.
Personally, I would never cycle live ammo in an unknown weapon.
Good luck.
If you ever get over to the Western part of the state, you are welcome to shoot on my private 200 yd. range.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 05:09 AM   #10
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Thanks for all the replies.

YES,, I'm letting the bolt slam home and it still doesn't extract properly. When I was in the Navy, I qualified and shot a lot of M1As but we always used full 20 round Mags. Never had an issue bolt closed or open.

I will LUBE HER UP and see if that makes a difference. As far as letting the bolt ram home, That's exactly what I'm doing BUT,,,,,, I think that the resistance of the round being chambered is adding to the misfeed and extractor issues.

I live in southeast CT (Groton/Ledyard) down by the Submarine Base. Might have to do some traveling to live fire exercises before I call it a DUD! :-)

Again,,, THANKS for the prompt replies and recommendations.


Old October 26th, 2016, 05:40 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by FIRECONTROLMAN View Post
I think that the resistance of the round being chambered is adding to the misfeed and extractor issues.

The resistance is part of the design and helps prevent slam fires. However, new mags may be causing additional resistance since the parkerizing hasn't been worn off yet. You can use a toothbrush and scrub some CLP into the parkerizing, just wipe off any excess.

Commercial barrels also have tighter "match" style chambers, as opposed to the oversized chrome lined chambers of USGI barrels. Thus, ammunition sizing is more critical. Some surplus or cheap commercial ammo may give some issues.

The best way to break in your rifle is with Federal American Eagle 168gr OTM. It even has a picture of the M1A Socom on the box.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 05:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by delong31 View Post
I'd hardly call it a failure considering you haven't even tried firing it. Hang in there...get to a range and fire it!
That says it all.

Last edited by Rich D; October 26th, 2016 at 07:38 AM.
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Old October 26th, 2016, 05:42 AM   #13
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Everything you are asking about appears totally normal to me. I can not get a full 10 round magazine to lock in my rifles with the bolt closed. (My Mini 14 will not accept a fully loaded 10 round magazine either with the bolt is closed.) The five round magazines can be a real bear to use and will not lock in with the bolt closed when fully loaded.

I understand all of your concerns, but as others here have said, you really have to go out and shoot this rifle before you give it the thumbs down.

In spite of what some folks say, I have always found that it takes some "breaking in" with a semi-auto rifle before you can know what its capabilities are.

Hand cycling does not produce the same force as the rifle cycling after being fired. If the same problems are still present at the range when you have put some rounds through her, well, then I would be upset.

The "slop" is normal and sometimes when hand cycling, the extractor may not snap over the cartridge case head due to lack of force exerted. That is most likely why you are experiencing a round left in the chamber and double feeds.

These rifles are designed to be loaded with the bolt open, think about it, the bolt stays open when the magazine is empty so that a stripper clip can be used or a new magazine can be inserted. This is a desirable concept with a battle weapon.

Hang in there, it will all work out. Be patient, it is really a good rifle.

Forget about where you bought it, contact SAI Customer Service with concerns, and if the problem persists, they will sent to a mailing label and fix it for you.


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Old October 26th, 2016, 06:01 AM   #14
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Stop hand cycling live rounds. Lube it up and shoot it. It'll be just fine.

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Old October 26th, 2016, 06:06 AM   #15
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Clean and lube the gun well.

Thanks from wiz1997
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