Dec 30, 2012

Zeroing the M1 Garand

I live about 3 miles away from my rifle range, which is the county run, Hap Baker Firearms Facility.  They have 10 rifle lanes to shoot in, with target posting ranges at 25, 50, 100 & 200 yards.  They also have a pistol range, with I believe 10 lanes, where you hang your targets via the use of a pulley system.  I have only ever used their rifle lanes.  The facility is well run, by safe and experienced range marshals.  Cease fires are called every 30 minutes which allows you to safely get down range and post new targets.  For Carroll county residents, like me, the cost is $10/day.  Out of county residents pay $15.  An annual membership to the range is only $50.  Their winter hours are 10am to an hour before sunset.  Not a bad deal, but if you don't want to wait in line for hours, you'd better be there at 9:15am, like I was this morning.  I was happy to be one of the first people there this morning, and took my time posting my targets.

The rifle I shot today was my M1 Garand, which, judging by the serial number 3445767, was manufactured by the Springfield Armory in January of 1945, just seven months before the end of World War II.  For those of you who don't know this rifle, it is a .30-06, semi-automatic, military rifle.  This rifle replaced the Springfield M1903bolt-action rifle.  It was issued to US infantrymen, my Grandfather included, for use during WWII, though it was also used later in the Korean War and early in the Viet Nam War.  Like nearly all of the guns I own, this one too, was given to me by my father.  I am very thankful for it.  As long as I have owned this gun, I have not been able to get to a range and zero it.  Today I took care of that.  I shot from a bench rest, sighting in at 25 yards, then shooting at 100 yards.  At 100 yards, I could not see the bulls-eye very well but managed to group what you see in the picture below.  I had posted targets at the 200 yard range, but when I put them in my sights I couldn't make heads nor tails of them.  My eyes just couldn't see them.  I shot about 200 rounds through this rifle and really enjoyed it, grouped very well at 25 yards, and I believe would group the same at 100 yards if my eyes could only do it justice. 

When I got back from the range, I set to work cleaning the barrel.  It's important that you use a muzzle guide when doing this, to avoid damaging the crown.  Doing so, takes a little more time, than usual, but it's worth if if you want to properly maintain the rifle and it's accuracy.  I had the barrel shining before I wiped it down and returned it to the rack.  Looking forward to getting out to the range again soon! 


recumbent conspiracy theorist said...


Great video, I showed Wyatt he says that's amazing that the rifle was made in 1945 and still works.

Mike said...

Thanks RCT:

That M1 is a lot of fun to shoot, although my shoulder is a bit sore today!