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BlueTurf 03-14-2012 11:38 PM

Recommended powders for M1A loads
Are any of you willing to share your pet loads for the M1A/M14? I haven't loaded any rounds for my M1A recently and I am in the process of doing some research on this subject. I am willing to try something different if I think it can produce good results safely. Any information you are willing to share is appreciated.

BlueTurf 03-15-2012 04:43 PM

I have noticed that there is not a forum on this site for M1A/M14, which surprises me because there is even one for Mini 14s and SKSs.

Is there a reason there is no M1A/M14 forum? Is something going on that I need to be made aware of? It is no big deal; I have found lots of other gun-related things to talk about.:)

oldpapps 03-15-2012 06:19 PM

There are forums that cater to the M1/M14/M1A. They seem to be hidden in the mix. Here is one I frequent:

Now to your question.
M1s and M14/M1As (as well as any other autoloader) have a preferred burn rate (that is most likely not the proper term). Anyway, if the burn is too fast, there is high peak pressures and low velocities. If the burn is too slow, the chamber pressures are still high as the action is trying to extract the caseing.

As with every other weapon, heaver bullets shoot slower and go farther. Heavy bullets, loaded on the warm side are not good for the operating rod of a Garand. There is variable gas plugs for the Garand, I have one for just in-case use. The M1A is very forgiving and a very, very strong action. But I don't see any reason to be brutal to the weapon or brass, I load nice.

Powder selection is well served if in the range of say IMR 3031 to one of the 4895s. Faster and slower powder work, but worry with heavy/light weight bullets later on. I use 748 exclusively in my M1A (and M1s) and have no problems of any type. I have read that 748 is temperature sensitive, I have not found any indication of it.

With my weapon, loading process and components, my standard loading for my M1A is 43.0 grains of 748 for 2677FPS with a 150 grain FMJ. My loading of 47.0 grains only pushed the velocity to 2762FPS. I save the 4 grains of powder. I know I can push 150 grains slugs faster. (46.0 grains of H4895 will push 110 grain VMax at 3103FPS).

My loads are safe in my weapons with my components, loaded my way. This doesn't mean that they are safe in other weapons with other components.

All way error on the side of safety,

BlueTurf 03-15-2012 07:14 PM

Thanks for sharing that information oldpapps. I have not tried 748. I usually use IMR 4895, IMR 4064, IMR 3031 and Varget. 39.5 grains of 3031 proved to be a real good target load. I stick with the 168-grain bullet.

As far as having an M14/M1A forum I don't really care. I used to participate in an M14 forum on a different site and didn't really enjoy it because it tended to be pretty brutal in there. Some of those participants got way over the top with their comments. I have really enjoyed this site.

BlueTurf 03-16-2012 12:08 PM

Unfortunately we do not have the option of deleting posts or I would have dropped this one like a hot potato.

oldpapps 03-16-2012 03:37 PM

Mr Turf,

I agree that many forums writers are opinionated to the point of being obnoxious. Some are down rite jerks. But after being a street cop for too many years and running a county jail for 10 (too long) months, I'm rather thick skinned. I just laugh at them to myself and mark them off as a loss.

I don't know why I do half of the things I do. So, I haven't a clue why 'Firearmstalk' doesn't' have a sub heading devoted to M1As/M1s. I would guess that the interest hasn't been that great.

I like to read what others have discovered and maybe learn some. I am always willing to offer the little that I have found that works. Unfortunately I'm loosing a lot of what I learned back when I started loading almost 50 years ago. But I hang on to what I call my standard loadings. I have used so many different powder types over the years, I can begin to list them. Some of my favored flavors have been discontinued (230 & 630). Others that I ruled out for one reason or another (H110/296) have had new life or potential added to them (for use in 300 BlackOut).
For the most part I use 748 for rifles, H4831 for my 375 H&H and 231 and Tightgroup for pistols, 630 for my 44 Mags. I do play a round with some others to maybe find something a little better or cheaper or something.

I hope my 308/7.62 loading info was of some benefit to you, if not, well it didn't cost anything and that doesn't bother me. Enjoy life.

BlueTurf 03-16-2012 03:49 PM

In the other firearms discussion site I mentioned the M1A/M14 forum seemed to be the most radical one and brought out the most passion, much of it not good. I thought this might be why the topic was being avoided. Anyway, I like this site. We see some good stuff in here. I will just stick with my same M1A loads. So far, so good.

oldpapps 03-16-2012 04:39 PM

Mr Turf,
If I may, Blue.
Many people have strong likes and dislikes. I have a great dis like for AKs, I have a personal problem with something that me and mine have been shot at with. I also have no use for glocks, had two fall apart in my hands in a week.
Perhaps the antis had personal problems with the M1A/M14 weapon system or were/are p!$$ed because they couldn't find one at a price they would pay. I bought mine in 1974 and it was a chunk for me at the time.
I bought a M1 Garand for me and another one for my dad in the early 80's. My dad didn't say a word, just grinned. He had trained with 03s and Garands at Ft Chaffee in 1943. I now have his Garand in my collection too.

Some people aren't happy with anything, others could care less.

My advise, don't frequent the forum with the jerks.

BlueTurf 03-16-2012 05:36 PM

Actually I noticed that the most radical and angry posts on the site I mentioned were from the ones who liked the M1As/M14s, to the point where they thought it was the only firearm on the planet that mattered. They were not very open-minded on this subject. I like talking about all kinds of guns. When I go shooting with others I usually let them shoot my M1A and I like to shoot what they have.

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