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Old 12-09-2015, 06:43 PM   #1
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Need Some Rifle Knowledge

I have been wanting to buy a Springfield M1A for a very long time. My rifle knowledge is limited just always been a handgun kind of guy. I knew I didn't want a two or three grand all out National Match or anything close to that price point. It did have to have a Walnut Stock cause well I am old school. For over a year I have had picked out at least in my mind the M1A "Loaded" Walnut Stock with Chrome 22" barrel. A month or so ago my new favorite LGS salesman suggested I consider the M1A "Scout Squad" Walnut stock with 18" regular barrel. Main difference of course is two inch shorter barrel and the Scout Squad comes with a forward mounted rail for scope or whatever from the factory.

My Question:1. Is there a big difference accuracy or otherwise between the 18" and 22" barrels?

2. Pros and cons between the Chrome and regular barrels.

Common sense says the longer barrel should be more accurate but I don't know if it will be that big a deal in my case for a rifle I will only need to shoot paper targets with. However in a SHTF world I would need it to "reach out and touch someone" with accuracy.

Thanks for your thoughts.

I don't have any place to shoot 1000 yards probably would not do that. The closest outdoor range to me is private and you must have a member to sponsor your membership so I don't see that happening. Eyes are not what they used to be I would do good to hit something at 400-500 yards.

Oh the Scout Squad MSRP is about $400.00 more than the Loaded model. I will have to shop around for the best price. (read shop around as look Online for best deal) I think real world they are selling both models within a few hundred dollars of each other.
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Old 12-09-2015, 07:00 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by 2sharp2 View Post
I have been wanting to buy a Springfield M1A for a very long time. My rifle knowledge is limited just always been a handgun kind of guy. I knew I didn't want a two or three grand all out National Match or anything close to that price point. It did have to have a Walnut Stock cause well I am old school. For over a year I have had picked out at least in my mind the M1A "Loaded" Walnut Stock with Chrome 22" barrel. A month or so ago my new favorite LGS salesman suggested I consider the M1A "Scout Squad" Walnut stock with 18" regular barrel. Main difference of course is two inch shorter barrel and the Scout Squad comes with a forward mounted rail for scope or whatever from the factory.

My Question:1. Is there a big difference accuracy or otherwise between the 18" and 22" barrels?

2. Pros and cons between the Chrome and regular barrels.

Common sense says the longer barrel should be more accurate but I don't know if it will be that big a deal in my case for a rifle I will only need to shoot paper targets with. However in a SHTF world I would need it to "reach out and touch someone" with accuracy.

Thanks for your thoughts.
I am not an M1 expert but have done serious rifle shooting. For distances of 100-200 yards an 18" barrel will be sufficient. It depends more on how the barrel and rifling are cut and how the barrel is broken in. Now if you intend on shooting long range, maybe 1000 yards, then I would suggest the 22". I think the accuracy is far more dependent on the ammunition. Every rifle has a bullet type weight it favors. I had a 16" AR15 I couldn't get to pattern a 6" group at 100 yards until I found the magic bullet weight it liked and then all was good. Your chrome lined barrel is harder and more durable but unless you intend on shooting 1000s of rounds or getting it very hot I wouldn't pay a lot extra for it. I know there are some avid rifle shooters here, let's see what they say.
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Old 12-09-2015, 07:00 PM   #3
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I have both and have been pretty confident off iron sites out to 250-300 yards, when my eyes were a bit younger. Someone else may have a view, but I don't think there is much difference in the two barrel choices. You can't go wrong with the SA M1A.

YMMV
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Old 12-09-2015, 07:08 PM   #4
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John 1373 hits the nail pretty much on the head. Chrome barrels last longer and don't "need" to be cleaned after every range session. Chrome will last 10,000+ rounds. Not really necessary for the adverage shooter. Cleaning your rifle after every day at the range and your good to go.
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Old 12-09-2015, 07:14 PM   #5
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In this case the reference is not regarding chrome lined. The M1A come with either a blued barrel or silver/chrome (exterior) barrel. Their barrels do go up in grade/quality as you move from scout squad up to loaded, national match etc. Not sure these days who is making which ones. There used to be a Kreiger option. Now largely carbon steel (blued) versus stainless steel.

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Old 12-09-2015, 07:28 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Jflytle View Post
In this case the reference is not regarding chrome lined. The M1A come with either a blued barrel or silver/chrome (exterior) barrel. Their barrels do go up in grade/quality as you move from scout squad up to loaded, national match etc. Not sure these days who is making which ones. There used to be a Kreiger option
Yes, thanks Jflytle, I did mean Chrome exterior on the barrel. I thought they were all chrome lined. I don't understand all the different barrel grade/quality's SA has.

I doubt I will even see close to 5,000 rounds thru that rifle in my lifetime.
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Old 12-09-2015, 08:41 PM   #7
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I am in the same frame of mind as you..I was looking a PalmettoStateArmory site last week and the SA M1A 's were listed at $1640 -- $1900...SCOUT out of stock...If you want to compare $$...good luck in your search
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Old 12-09-2015, 08:49 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by 2sharp2 View Post
I have been wanting to buy a Springfield M1A for a very long time. My rifle knowledge is limited just always been a handgun kind of guy. I knew I didn't want a two or three grand all out National Match or anything close to that price point. It did have to have a Walnut Stock cause well I am old school. For over a year I have had picked out at least in my mind the M1A "Loaded" Walnut Stock with Chrome 22" barrel. A month or so ago my new favorite LGS salesman suggested I consider the M1A "Scout Squad" Walnut stock with 18" regular barrel. Main difference of course is two inch shorter barrel and the Scout Squad comes with a forward mounted rail for scope or whatever from the factory.

My Question:1. Is there a big difference accuracy or otherwise between the 18" and 22" barrels?

2. Pros and cons between the Chrome and regular barrels.

Common sense says the longer barrel should be more accurate but I don't know if it will be that big a deal in my case for a rifle I will only need to shoot paper targets with. However in a SHTF world I would need it to "reach out and touch someone" with accuracy.

Thanks for your thoughts.

I don't have any place to shoot 1000 yards probably would not do that. The closest outdoor range to me is private and you must have a member to sponsor your membership so I don't see that happening. Eyes are not what they used to be I would do good to hit something at 400-500 yards.

Oh the Scout Squad MSRP is about $400.00 more than the Loaded model. I will have to shop around for the best price. (read shop around as look Online for best deal) I think real world they are selling both models within a few hundred dollars of each other.
I can't speak for the rifle, but I know what I would pay for 4 more inches. I would be broke as hell with a smile on my face.



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Old 12-09-2015, 10:01 PM   #9
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I only lost 85 fps going from a 22" to 18" barrel when my McMillan was rebarreled at work. When I did that kind of thing...

There is no loss in accuracy per se with a shorter barrel. Just velocity and and terminal ballistics. Head shots at 500 were no issue with the 18" barrel and 11.5 moa of dope from 100 zero.

My buddy has that exact Scout model and loves it. Another has the SOCOM model for Heavy Metal 3 gun competition and had to a lot of work to get it to run reliable.

I disagree with cleaning everyday. It used to be preached in sniper circles to clean every 20 shots. I clean when it no longer is shooting to it potential.

Gail McMillan wrote in article on such years ago. I will post if I still can find it. More barrels are ruined or have shorter life from over cleaning than from shooting.

And many after a deep cleaning and removal of all copper shoot like shit and the groups get tighter as it get fouled. My Liljas did.
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Old 12-09-2015, 10:42 PM   #10
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I have been shopping for a M1A myself so far the best price is from Bud's Guns and it ships free. I have checked in on a few forums and some say the extra you pay for the loaded model is not really worth it they say the standard is plenty accurate. I want a walnut stock also I am definitely old school I love wood furniture on firearms. I am thinking the standard with walnut will be good. Unless I find a loaded model for the right price.
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