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Who makes M14 type rifles? And, other questions.

This is a discussion on Who makes M14 type rifles? And, other questions. within the Modern M14 forums, part of the M14 M1A Forum category; Hi- I tried doing searches and couldn't find what I was looking for. If there are already a thread, or threads that cover my questions, ...


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Old May 4th, 2010, 08:59 AM   #1
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Who makes M14 type rifles? And, other questions.

Hi- I tried doing searches and couldn't find what I was looking for. If there are already a thread, or threads that cover my questions, please refer me to them.

Otherwise, I am requesting help.

Reading Shotgun News, I see three sources for M14 (semiautomatic) rifles (plus, the SA M1A.) Those are LRB, Fulton Armory, and James River.

My questions are these-
1) Are there other manufacturers? If so, who? Which come most recommended?

2) I have seen prices from approximately $1500 (standard M1A) to close to $3000. What are the benefits of the higher priced rifles? (I suspect it is possible to pay even more, but I am just going on what I have seen thus far.) I am looking for a more traditional looking arm, so would not need/want it to have a look reminiscent of the M-16/AR-15/AR-10 classes of rifles.

3) Because an M14 would not be my only rifle, I would expect a low (relatively speaking) round count of perhaps 200 rounds per year. (This is also based upon the current high prices of ammunition.) Knowing this, would members here recommend one choice over another?

4) I have assembled lower receivers for AR-15 type rifles. Would buying an M14 receiver and a separate parts kit be something readily done? Would this be cost effective?

I realize that my questions may be both too general or too specific, and if I can clarify, please let me know.

Thank you, and have a great day.

Bob

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Old May 4th, 2010, 09:21 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by sandanbob View Post
Hi- I tried doing searches and couldn't find what I was looking for. If there are already a thread, or threads that cover my questions, please refer me to them.

Otherwise, I am requesting help.

Reading Shotgun News, I see three sources for M14 (semiautomatic) rifles (plus, the SA M1A.) Those are LRB, Fulton Armory, and James River.

My questions are these-
1) Are there other manufacturers? If so, who? Which come most recommended?

2) I have seen prices from approximately $1500 (standard M1A) to close to $3000. What are the benefits of the higher priced rifles? (I suspect it is possible to pay even more, but I am just going on what I have seen thus far.) I am looking for a more traditional looking arm, so would not need/want it to have a look reminiscent of the M-16/AR-15/AR-10 classes of rifles.

3) Because an M14 would not be my only rifle, I would expect a low (relatively speaking) round count of perhaps 200 rounds per year. (This is also based upon the current high prices of ammunition.) Knowing this, would members here recommend one choice over another?

4) I have assembled lower receivers for AR-15 type rifles. Would buying an M14 receiver and a separate parts kit be something readily done? Would this be cost effective?

I realize that my questions may be both too general or too specific, and if I can clarify, please let me know.

Thank you, and have a great day.

Bob
Bob;
1. I'll try 1st: The basic difference is a forged reciever, on M1As. Only LRB was making a forged receiver until 7.62Firearms as of late. I also understand SEI (Smith enterprises is in the mix to make a new receiver). All other parts are GI or commercail or some combination of those. Recommending one over another is like a Ford and Chevy, personal preference, or match shooting etc. This one should be your call once you have spent some time on this forum. This is a great forum of knowledge and feedback.
2. Wood stock versions of the M1A are OT so, set your budget and start reading so you learn and ask ??s. These are more tradional vs the EBRs and Socoms etc.
3. All well made and maintained M1As should run regardless of rounds per year. You may want to consider reloading to hepl feed the rifles. I do and am able to tailor my loads for target, hunting etc.
4. Part kits are not common IMHO and will cost as the GI parts as well as you receiver choice. This will cost more that one already assembled and ready to go. Plus, you will have the time to build, parts to find. There are builders on the board who could answer specifics for you. Cost effective is up to you. None of these are cheap and you get what you pay for. Cheapest cost overall seem to the the poly's as these were chinese made. My suggestion is to read a lot of the posts, ask ??s and find a good used one and buy that. Once you have put a lot of rounds downrange, then you can decide how this suits your needs to progress, own more, match shoot, plink, hunt etc.
Welcome to the board,
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Old May 4th, 2010, 09:37 AM   #3
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Howdy Bob, and welcome to the forum!

You're in the right place.

I'll take a whack at this.

Add 7.62MM Firearms and Smith Enterprise to your list.

Springfield Armory is the big boy on the block and their rifles are the standard against which all others are measured.

What level of accuracy are you looking for? Based on your low expected round count, an SAI Standard or Loaded M1A might meet your needs just fine, and will be at the low end of the price scale. They come with a lifetime warranty.

SAI rifles are mass-produced and assembled in large batches, and that's how they keep their prices lower. The other smaller shops produce rifles in lower quantities and each is generally hand-built by a craftsman. Craftsman labor is expensive, and high-quality parts made in small batches are more expensive, and this is why you see prices up at the higher end of the scale- for example LRB or SEI.

Original USGI M14 parts are becoming scarce, and a rifle built with these parts will be towards the higher end of the price scale.

A good way to start is to shop for a used SAI rifle with a low round count. Watch the PX here, and GunBroker, and scour your local gunshops. Once you get some rounds downrange from a standard rifle you will get a feel for whether you want fancy custom upgrades like match barrels, glass bedding, rows of rails on exotic stocks, etc...

Good luck and stay in touch!

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Old May 4th, 2010, 10:46 AM   #4
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There is only one company producing a real hot hammer forged receiver. That company is LRB Arms. Receivers from other companies are either cast or machined from solid steel billits.

Good receivers can and are being made by all of these processes. Not so good receivers can and have also been made.

The LRB Arms receiver is the best you can buy. Smith Enterprise has produced some of the best of their types and Springfield Armory has made a consistantly very good cast receiver.

New comers on the block like 7.62 Firearms have a long ways to go before they can establish themselves as a reputable receiver producer. The learning curve for this very hard to manufacture part is long and hard.

If your demands for a rifle are not to great, I'd recommend Springfield or maybe Fulton Armory. If you want and can afford the best I'd go with LRB or Smith Enterprise. The new Smith receivers haven't hit the market yet, but based on past experience, they should be very good.

Note that these are my personal opinions based on many years of M14 rifle building and the use of receivers from most all manufacturers. I wouldn't expect everyone to agree with me, but they are honest opinions.

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Old May 5th, 2010, 09:49 AM   #5
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I would like to say "thank you" to the three responders. Or, is that "respondents"?

Anyway... thank you for the welcome. Now, for more questions and comments.

VETTOM- what does "OT" mean? Regarding reloading- what is a good budget setup? I have seen some expensive equipment, such as the Dillon Progressive, but I don't think I would need the volume such an unit can produce. At least, starting out. :-) Can I get started for $100-$150, plus components? And, could I easily add other calibers, rifle and/or pistol?

The standard SAI M1A should be sufficient for my purposes- 2336USMC, I would say that if the rifle was capable of 2-3 MOA with iron sights, that would be plenty to challenge me. I am not looking for 1/2 MOA, by any means. I asked about the others, as if a few hundred dollars more would mean saving money in the future, I would most likely make that investment up front.

Not that there are that many, but the Chinese versions are ones that I wish to avoid.

So, I will keep my eyes open for a used M1A (SAI) for now, while I am saving up, and if I get impatient in 8-10 months, I'll look into ordering a new rifle. I'll let the owner of my local gun shop (we are on first name basis) know that I am looking for one so he can keep a look out, as well.

I think that covers my thoughts for now. Thanks again, and have a great day!

Bob

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Old May 5th, 2010, 11:10 AM   #6
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I'm pretty sure he was refering to "old technology". This is where I get back into my "personal opinions" again. I really like the feel of real wood stocks. You can pretty much have them your way and they just feel good. I should note that my competition rifle has a McMillan fiberglass stock. It's hard to beat a stock as bullet proof as a McMillan. It's fat, but not too fat, and it has weight that is a big help in controlling recoil forces during rapid fire events. Fiberglass also makes a very stabile platform and won't warp under extreme conditions. I actually have two NM rifles. The other has a traditional walnut GI NM stock. I like it too. It's a little lighter and the stock is wider giving it a completely different feel.

Most of the so called hi-tech stocks are heavy, cumbersome, and some have sharp edges that tend to dig into spots that prefer something gentler. They are also made for particular purposes rather than general use. OT isn't all that bad.

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Old May 5th, 2010, 11:57 AM   #7
 
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Welcome, Bob. Where in New England are you?

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Old May 5th, 2010, 12:33 PM   #8
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Up in Maine- originally part of your state. :-)

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Old May 5th, 2010, 05:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandanbob View Post
I would like to say "thank you" to the three responders. Or, is that "respondents"?

Anyway... thank you for the welcome. Now, for more questions and comments.

VETTOM- what does "OT" mean? Regarding reloading- what is a good budget setup? I have seen some expensive equipment, such as the Dillon Progressive, but I don't think I would need the volume such an unit can produce. At least, starting out. :-) Can I get started for $100-$150, plus components? And, could I easily add other calibers, rifle and/or pistol?

The standard SAI M1A should be sufficient for my purposes- 2336USMC, I would say that if the rifle was capable of 2-3 MOA with iron sights, that would be plenty to challenge me. I am not looking for 1/2 MOA, by any means. I asked about the others, as if a few hundred dollars more would mean saving money in the future, I would most likely make that investment up front.

Not that there are that many, but the Chinese versions are ones that I wish to avoid.

So, I will keep my eyes open for a used M1A (SAI) for now, while I am saving up, and if I get impatient in 8-10 months, I'll look into ordering a new rifle. I'll let the owner of my local gun shop (we are on first name basis) know that I am looking for one so he can keep a look out, as well.

I think that covers my thoughts for now. Thanks again, and have a great day!

Bob
OT= out there. For reloading, you can check sites, Midway, Mid-South etc. for RCBS, Lyman, Hornady etc. expect to spend about 300-400 for a decent set up. Look for used, sometimes on craigslist, other boards, gun shows. I reload as I can build up a supply and know what I am feeding all mine. Also, it is cheaper, figuring you time is billed at 0. So if you expense your brass first time out, 2nd is even cheaper. a pound of powder is $22 around here, and will do about 150 rounds +/- a few for a 7.62x51. bullets can be high or low best to buy in bulk. I buy once fired primed brass (no hazmat) and am happy as it saves a few steps. Hope this helps Bob
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ps, I have seen some polys here for ok price, but I am staying away from them too as I already had SAIs and to get these fixed was not worth it to me FWIW.

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Old May 7th, 2010, 09:14 AM   #10
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I agree that SAI would probably meet your needs the best. What kind of shooting do you want to do with it? This will help a lot in choosing the right rifle for you. From what I've read, I'd recommend SAI's Loaded, Standard, or Scout. Find some at a gun shop and handle them, see which feels best to you.

I don't think assembling your own rifle is a possibility unless you're a skilled gun smith. Ted will be able to tell what all is involved in that process.

As far as reloading, you can get started with a basic kit for $150 - $200. I like the value of Lee's products. Look at their kits at Cabelas. Add a set of dies and a reloading manual or two and you're ready to go. If you're interested in starting to reload, go look through the Ammo Bunker. Lots of info and knowledgeable people.

Just for a heads up, it's going to take a lot of self control to stay at 200 rounds a year!

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Old May 7th, 2010, 09:58 AM   #11
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You should look into the Loaded model with a CM or SS barrel, if you want more traditional go with the CM. Not that the standard is a bad rifle, just thing for little extra cash you can get a better rifle...

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Old May 11th, 2010, 05:53 AM   #12
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Hi!

I had posted a reply a few days ago, and hadn't received notice of any replies, which made me curious. When I came back to check, my post wasn't there. Hm.

So, here goes.

I do like the idea of reloading, and have looked at catalogs from Midway, Cabela's, and Natchez. The number of choices in reloading supplies is a bit overwhelming, and knowing which reloading tools are the rights ones for me is something I don't know enough about to choose. I have seen single caliber kits for (if I recall correctly) around $30. I understand that such a kit would be slow, but would this be a good way to introduce myself to reloading? Or, should I go for the Lee products mentioned? Or, other brand?

I think I'll ask some folks that I know, and also check out the specific forum here.

As far as keeping it to 200 rounds per year... that was an estimate, based on both my free time and available funds. If reloading could cut costs in half, then maybe I could go for 400 rounds. :-) I do not see myself shooting thousands of rounds, except in .22LR.

I have started saving towards the purchase of an M14. I suspect it will be at least four months, possibly 8-10, before I can buy one, but that gives me a goal. And, perhaps I will have learned enough prior to that to feel comfortable getting some reloading equipment.

Thank you again to those who have replied.

God bless,

Bob

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Old May 11th, 2010, 06:10 AM   #13
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Goals are always a good thing and what better one than acquiring an M14 variant? Get the rifle first, shoot it a bit then decide if reloading is for you. You may not shoot enough to justify the cost of reloading equipment. There's also a lot of factors that need to be addressed when reloading this type of ammo so it's not something to just jump into haphazardly.

I also understand the constraints of a budget, just watch for deals on ammo, they're out there. I always run into the problem that when there's a deal I'm broke and when I have cash there are no deals...

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Old May 11th, 2010, 06:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
I always run into the problem that when there's a deal I'm broke and when I have cash there are no deals...
Hey, That Should Be A STICKY Here on the Forum !!!



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