Looking for experience-based advice on the CMP Special 308 Garand.

Greg Langelius *

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Not going to buy a lot more guns in my lifetime, but I have a serious craving for a decent 308 semi.

I am also a Garand addict who has one very nice one, and has to make do with maintaining 8 more parade Garands for my VFW Post.

My bucket list's first entry: CMP Special .308 Garand.

RM1308SPCLIHC​
CMP Special (.308) M1 Garand. This is a completely refurbished rifle consisting of an original M1 Garand IHC receiver, new production Criterion barrel, new production American Walnut stock and handguards, and new web sling. Receiver and most other parts are refinished USGI, but some parts may be new manufacture.
Receiver will have considerable pitting above the wood line.
A .308 spacer block is installed to prevent the loading of a .30-06 round into the chamber.
$1250
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Shipping within 2 weeks


I am very, very likely going to do this as soon as the budget allows; probably in the next two or three months. I don't normally spend a lot on guns but for this, I'm willing.

Pro's:

USGI Forged IHC receiver and genuine GI parts. Pitting, no biggie for me; it will be for shooting.
Criterion Barrel, .308 chambered
New Walnut stock

Con's:

I don't know.

So, who knows this gun personally?

Am I barking up a good tree?

Hidden flaws?

Hidden joys?

Enlighten me, 'Hide...

Greg
 

NukeMMC

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I cannot say anything for/against the CMP 308 Garands but I have an original, SECNAV Trophy MK2-1 Match Grade A M1 in 7.62. It shoots significantly better than any -06 Garand I have ever owned or shot, including NM M1s. It is great in offhand and prone slow fire. In the sitting or prone rapid, the bigger oprod (than the M14) moves a bit slower and jiggles you around a little more but the recoil impulse is lighter. Another advantage is bending/overworking the oprod is less of a concern with 308 than -06 when shooting reloads.
 

rth1800

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Going to be very unsaleable on the secondary market for your heirs.
What’s wrong with the M1a? They shot better and are slightly less unsaleable than a pitted, bastardized M1
 

MK20

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I would look on Gunbroker. There is a good chance that you will find a used one much cheaper.
I have personally handled a couple but never shot any. Supposedly they shoot very well.
Last note. The CMP put a bunch of repro stocks on a bunch of them and the reproduction ones weren’t cut quite the same as the originals and don’t feel right. I would look to see if you can find one in an original stock. The repro stocks look noticeably different, at least in person.
 

Greg Langelius *

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We don't sell guns in our family.

Or more properly, the only one I ever sold was the M1a. Wonderful gun, and that's why it sold.

It was make the mortgage payment time or be on the street. The M1a was the most saleable.

Realities intervene all the time.

I am the only gun writer to have had two articles in the inaugural issue of Tactical Shooter; they were both about the M1a. I know the rifle.

I am returning to .308 after the M1a sale episode back around 2005/6, and I want a .308 semi to complement my .308 match-ish bolt gun.

I am especially familiar with the M1 (I maintain our VFW Post's eight parade rifles.) and have a multi-hundred dollar investment in maintenance equipment for it. If I have to work with problems, I'd rather deal with the M1's than with the M1a's.

Also, it's for shooting, not selling. What guns we buy are all carefully considered as additions to the family 'fortune'. They have to work well, and each gets load development.

...And the barrel on the M1 is 2 inches longer; better for longer distances. Better (maybe) chambering for longer range, better barrel length to go with it.

Since you asked, there's nothing wrong with the M1a. I'd just rather deal with one rifle system than two. But I am also very interested in your question, thank you for asking.

My existing M1 is a genuine treasure; I'm sold.

Greg

PS Please, all...; keep the info coming in...
 
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smoothy8500

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The only complaint with the "Special Grade" from CMP is their stock-It's "walnut colored" Hackberry-It doesn't look right. If that is the only drawback, it is easily rectified if you choose to pick up a decent GI stock. The Criterion barrel is quite accurate, and everything else is GI. My opinion is you can't go wrong. Even if you got a Service Grade/Rack Grade on the cheap, bought a new 308 barrel from CMP and sold the GI barrel, you would not really break even. Go for the Special.
 
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hlee

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The listing says new production American walnut stock. I'd be pissed to get a hackberry stock. Im glad I got mine several years ago. Contrary to what was said above, a CMP special- with paperwork- is very sellable, if you choose to do so. The criterion barrels are known shooters and being from the CMP gives them pedigree. Maybe not to the extent of a service grade, but I'm not afraid to burn out a criterion barrel. A new curly maple stock is showing up tomorrow.

If you want s shooter, I think the special grade is a good buy. If you really want a collector, service grade...
 

Greg Langelius *

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The parade rifles have White Walnut stocks, not issue, without the butt receptacles, and somewhat fat. They had a mud red/brown alcohol stain that was utterly atrocious.

I stripped them down with acetone/odorless thinner/alcohol, and steel wool. I left just enough color to highlight the grain, then applied about 10 coats of BLO, cutting it back to the surface with Steel wool every two coats. Was eventually doing hand rubbed coats of one-two drops per.

The result was pinkish blond finish, which gets recut part way and refinished every year. This year is the third one, and the finish is darkening with age, looking like a cup of medium coffee. Each one is a slightly different shade, deliberately.

It's time again, and I am cutting it all back to the wood, and doing it over again; but this time, the finishing steel wool will be 0000 before the oil goes on.

That's also what's in store for the CMP Special.

I broke the intent to The Bride today.

No fireworks.

No numbers stated yet, but the admonition, "Not cheap...".. That'll be the next hurdle.

This may work, after all...

Greg

PS Garandman. I like the M1a, too; but the extra $500 plus for a new one would be the real deal breaker for The Bride.
 
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garandman

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CMP has an excellent reputation. Facebook has a great M1 Garand forum that can help with specifics (I hate FB too, but that's a good forum) :)

Since yer not re-selling, get what YOU want, tho I'd also recommend an M1A.
 

sinister

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I got mine at the Camp Perry CMP North store (H&R receiver, you could consider it a complete depot re-build with new stock and hardware) for just under $1000. It has a walnut stock with 6 or more hand-applied coats of pure tung oil.

Between my H&R M1 and the H&R 7.62 I'd let the 30-06 go first -- for most if not all of the arguments in the previous posts.

I sold my Glenn Nelson National Match M1A somewhere between 15 and 20 years ago and don't miss it.
 

Rifleman777

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I have one and like it very much. Nicer to shoot than a 30-06. Refinished the stock and it looks wonderful. It's a fair value considering the milled parts, new barrel, new stock. I put a match front sight on it and an adjustable gas plug.
 

Greg Langelius *

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Spoke some more with Celia about this idea. Made it clear that in light of recent expenditures and upcoming excursions once our 10y/o Granddaughter arrives for the Summer; it would be inappropriate for me to expect ramping up this project until after she's gone back home to Upstate NY.

Some pushback, but no outright negativity.

'Nuff said on this subject for the time being...

Thank you all very much for your generous responses.

I've filled out the forms mostly, and have copies of my DD-124 and VFW Life Membership Card on file. They wait in the computer, unprinted yet, until the proper time arrives.

Greg
 
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hlee

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Here's a rather poor picture of my 30-06 m1 garand in its CMP walnut stock, sitting next to the curly maple stock from dupage. The CMP stock was DRY when the gun arrived and I'm not sure how many- many- coats of 50/50 tung oil it got, nor how many- a bunch more- coats of pure tung oil went on top of that. It may have been me, but I think the stock is noticeably heavier.

The new stock arrived with a slathering of finish on it- not a carefully applied hand-rubbed tung oil finish that I probably should not have expected. It would s also much blonder in person than it appeared on the website. Since this pic, it has received enough 320 grit sand paper to remove the sloppy finish, and 3 coats of 50/50 tung oil. The figure no longer looks painted on, shimmers and moves depending on the light angle, and is starting to pop. It needs a lot more oil. Oh well, I love the smell of tung oil.

7096790
 

Chance

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I have a CMP service grade special built on a H&R receiver that I bought about 6 years ago. I shoot this Garand more than any other Garand that I own. No regrets, very happy customer here. I’ve got a video of me on YouTube shooting it through the Rifles Only mouse trap.
 

Greg Langelius *

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The only complaint with the "Special Grade" from CMP is their stock-It's "walnut colored" Hackberry-It doesn't look right. If that is the only drawback, it is easily rectified if you choose to pick up a decent GI stock. The Criterion barrel is quite accurate, and everything else is GI. My opinion is you can't go wrong. Even if you got a Service Grade/Rack Grade on the cheap, bought a new 308 barrel from CMP and sold the GI barrel, you would not really break even. Go for the Special.
I am already looking at the Boyd's Garand stock set with the black paint finish. This would be my custom stock for serious shooting as a Match Rifle, glassbedded.

It would have a black die cut decal or two added (black on black), for my personal cool factor. I like the"Alien" motif. I also have the die cut decals for the "Predator" motif.

The CMP Special stock would remain unbedded, for use in the small potential likelihood of shooting a John C. Garand Match.

It would have a small "Peace through superior firepower" sticker.

I also have an eye on the Fulton Armory CMP Competition Garand Stock, which is specially inletted to negate the need for bedding, and is legit for the Garand Matches.

Finally, my existing 30-06 Garand is fitted with the Alley M1 Garand Front Sight, which has been o/o production for quite some time. I might be into obtaining one for the newer rifle.

Greg
 
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