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Greetings and Happy Almost-4th! First post here (longtime lurker), so I'd just like to say how helpful this site often is - and how you guys seem like pretty good fellers.

That intro being said, I'm trying to figure out a plan of attack for long-term usage of my M1A, and I have a question about choice of ammo.

A bit of background: Been living in the "Big City" for the past few years and rarely (if ever) had the chance to take the weapon out to a long-distance range. When I did, I would usually just grab a few boxes of whatever the range had available (either .308 or 7.62 NATO). Probably should have bought a bunch in bulk and kept it at home, but I so rarely had the chance to use it that I just didn't. Now, however, having moved out to WV's eastern panhandle (!) and knowing some guys with enough land to shoot on, I'm going to start buying in bulk.

I do not want to be "that guy" who starts another .308 vs 7.62 thread. I know both can be used if you're sensible about what you put in the weapon. My actual question is about the weapon becoming "accustomed" (for lack of a better term) to one or the other. Most of my shooting (the vast majority) will be plinking, but from time to time I will likely join a couple buddies hunting (whitetail mostly, though we may go further afield elsewhere looking for elk) - and in the latter hunting case I'll want to use a serious round intended for dropping game. So, I'm wondering: If I plink with 7.62 NATO surplus and hunt with something like a Nosler 165gr AccuBond, will the weapon be "accustomed" to the 7.62 and react poorly (/be damaged) by the .308? If yes, then I would assume I should use .308 for plinking.

Question in a nutshell: Once I choose 7.62 or .308, should I stick with that choice for all purposes, or will the weapon not give a rat's ass if I change it up here and there?

Thanks!

P.S. Obviously not a ballistics/gunsmithing expert, hence the probably silly use of the word "accustomed".
P.P.S. Since this is my first post, a word about the username: My fiance gave me my M1A brand-new on Veteran's Day a few years ago. She's a keeper (the girl and the gun)!
 

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Greetings and Happy Almost-4th! First post here (longtime lurker), so I'd just like to say how helpful this site often is - and how you guys seem like pretty good fellers.

That intro being said, I'm trying to figure out a plan of attack for long-term usage of my M1A, and I have a question about choice of ammo.

A bit of background: Been living in the "Big City" for the past few years and rarely (if ever) had the chance to take the weapon out to a long-distance range. When I did, I would usually just grab a few boxes of whatever the range had available (either .308 or 7.62 NATO). Probably should have bought a bunch in bulk and kept it at home, but I so rarely had the chance to use it that I just didn't. Now, however, having moved out to WV's eastern panhandle (!) and knowing some guys with enough land to shoot on, I'm going to start buying in bulk.

I do not want to be "that guy" who starts another .308 vs 7.62 thread. I know both can be used if you're sensible about what you put in the weapon. My actual question is about the weapon becoming "accustomed" (for lack of a better term) to one or the other. Most of my shooting (the vast majority) will be plinking, but from time to time I will likely join a couple buddies hunting (whitetail mostly, though we may go further afield elsewhere looking for elk) - and in the latter hunting case I'll want to use a serious round intended for dropping game. So, I'm wondering: If I plink with 7.62 NATO surplus and hunt with something like a Nosler 165gr AccuBond, will the weapon be "accustomed" to the 7.62 and react poorly (/be damaged) by the .308? If yes, then I would assume I should use .308 for plinking.

Question in a nutshell: Once I choose 7.62 or .308, should I stick with that choice for all purposes, or will the weapon not give a rat's ass if I change it up here and there?

Thanks!

P.S. Obviously not a ballistics/gunsmithing expert, hence the probably silly use of the word "accustomed".
P.P.S. Since this is my first post, a word about the username: My fiance gave me my M1A brand-new on Veteran's Day a few years ago. She's a keeper (the girl and the gun)!
Welcome. The M14 has no "memory" so you can change ammo without problems, except for pressure. No heavy bullets, and no super-performance loads. You can get a ported gas plug to help with higher pressure. I use 150 grain Barnes TTSX for hunting. The 130 grain TTSX would be another choice. Plink with NATO surplus ball and max accuracy with Federal 7.62X51 Gold Medal Match, or the like.(Ammoseek.com and usually SGammo.com for me).

"The M1A is designed and built to specifications to shoot standard factory .308 made to SAAMI specifications or 7.62x51 NATO ammunition" from the SAI manual.
 

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My rule of thumb is to stick with FGMM 168 when I'm shooting for groups, Hornady AMAX for hunting and good old surplus .762 for fun
 

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SGammo.com for me too. A great site. When my brass is getting low/old I buy new (MEN) or LC stuff from em. Shoot it and then it's to the Laboratory.
Your rifle will like and hate different ammo but shooting stuff it hates (not so good groups) will not affect shooting stuff it likes. It's about internal ballistics and friction, powder charge/weight consistency and bullet uniformity.
I roll my own but it's basically the same as Fed. Gold Medal Match(FGMM).
Finding what your rifle likes, most will shoot well, spend a bit of money up front. Buy a mixed bag of 20 round boxes with different weighted bullets.
The rifle will sing with one or two of the boxes...like I said, most will shoot well but one will be much much better.
If your rifle doesn't like FGMM something is wrong. lol
I shoot/load AccuBonds for hunting and load 150 grain Hornady bthp, 155 grain Nosler CC
for plinking...i.e Nato Ball with a better bullet.
It's the bullet that matters. Yes other factors are there but the bullet is the main ingredient for better accuracy.

Good Luck.
Welcome to the Forum.
Dutch
P.s. If you ever get to really stretch her legs, get some XM118LR. Look for it @ https://www.targetsportsusa.com/ OR
http://www.sgammo.com/
600yards plus will become very fun.
 
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Your M1A has a tight match chamber. It is intended for SAAMI spec ammo, whether it is marked .308 Winchester or 7.62x51.

The problem with surplus ammunition is that it doesn't have to conform to SAAMI specifications. A lot of it, especially foreign made, is intended for machine guns and may be oversized for your chamber. That can make it rough on the extractor. A lot of ammunition with a NATO cross on it comes from countries that aren't even part of NATO. Go figure.

US made surplus ammunition, to the best of my knowledge, will conform to SAAMI specs if it has been repacked in commercial packaging.

The folks on this forum have a great deal of experience shooting every kind of cheap, god-forsaken crap surplus ammo you can find. If it costs less than 60 cents a round, somebody here has already tried it. Just do a search. RNGR1
 

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First off, welcome aboard. Second, Keep both of them-rifle and women. Third, as KurtC and TheDutchman have said-find the load your rifle likes for hunting(stay less than 173 grains) and play with the cheap stuff. Stay away from Hornady Magnum and Superperformance, anything commercial 180 grain(loaded for a bolt gun not a gas gun), the 165 grain hunting bullets will do for elk without any problems(if you hit them right), and finally, if you can ask a question on this forum about the M14/M1A that can't be answered by someone here-well, it just won't happen.
 

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Most of the hunters in my club that go west for elk use scoped bolt rifles with heavier rounds at pretty long distances. Correct me if wrong but I get the impression that an M1a would not be the rifle of choice for elk hunting in the mountains.
 

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I wouldn't want to hump around my heavy scoped M1A at altitude with decent amount of gear up and down mountainsides? My Stainless Stalker 7RM is more accurate at distance, hits harder but most importantly quite a bit lighter is a much better choice for me. I know there are some that do but bad knees and age now tell me lighter is better.
 

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Welcome aboard. In my case it seems that my rifles like LC, Hirtenberger, HXP and other FMJ types of ammo. They most assuredly like the Federal Match rounds. I agree with many here, SGammo is a good place to look.

Here is the thing, after shooting all types of ammo at the range I decided that I should have one hunting round, 150 Grain Soft Point, available should I decide to hunt with any of my M1A's. I was just looking for a middle of the road, non-souped up round.

It turns out that the .308 Win. PMC 150 grain soft point does really well in my M1A's at the distances I would most likely hunt. It generally shoots almost to the same point of aim as the better surplus stuff. It is not expensive, (I believe I last paid about $16.00 per box of 20) does not have a lot of lead tip exposure, and surely has enough hitting power to put down medium sized game at the distances that I would most likely hunt.

BTW, I do not work for either PMC or SGammo.

HTH.
 
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