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Is the M14 still relevant?

3522 Views 37 Replies 28 Participants Last post by  Ted Brown
Update on page 2
I picked up and M1A with a wood stock and while I am working the finish I wanted to see if I could answer that question.

Machine gun Wood Air gun Military camouflage Gun barrel

New with the old. Had to test accuracy out of the box! 3 MOA was satisfactory since I rarely shoot irons.

Machine gun Air gun Trigger Wood Shotgun

SA Synthetic stock, painted vented handguard, shimmed gas block, HVAC tape bedding ;), Amazon cheek riser, and finally the Bassett Mount for the LPVO!

Sky Plant Cemetery Headstone Grave

Coldbore group… in love…

Machine gun Air gun Trigger Gun barrel Shotgun
Gotta check my iron’s zero!
Brown Rectangle Wood Road surface Beige

Not too bad. Easy to see .30 cal vs 6.5mm!

Bumper Wood Automotive exterior Air gun Auto part

Strange nose dive FTF. Mag is a CMI.

Sleeve Art Font Rectangle Painting

Accuracy is on par with an issued Geissele Upper. Bottom two groups are with warm barrel, no rear support, and not taking my time.

In general:
After going to the range many times with a irons, a red dot, and this LPVO, definitely still relevant! That being said, recoil control, 5-15yd drills are far harder than with a straight line design. It really helps to have a real fiberglass handguard and a slightly elevated optic. That combo allowed a good c-clamp grip. It weighs 10lbs as pictured, not too bad! I see this as an ideal mid ranger with the ability to work up close if need be.

Future:
After a little tweaking, it was fine out to 300yds shooting ~10” plates. With LC M80 accuracy is alright, but the Hornady 150 Interlok shoots better. Hopefully I will get out to the 400yd range and test some 168 GMM when the wood stock is finished. For now, the interlocks fit the ACSS Raptor perfectly!

PS
Air gun Trigger Gesture Gun barrel Gun accessory

Weird nose dive with CMI mag. Tapping/hitting the spine that fixes an AR mag does little to nothing…
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The only problem with this comparison is that both rifles were pretty much designed at the same time, Yes the M14 was designed around the M1 Garand but it was not a finished rifle until the 50's.
Eugene Stoner was working on the AR design in the 50"s as well, In fact you could buy a AR 15 long before you could buy a M1A semi auto rifle so in reality you are comparing a old AR to a younger M1A.
I like both and that is where I stand! besides I cant afford to keep a M1A at every door but...

eQ
 

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The only problem with this comparison is that both rifles were pretty much designed at the same time, Yes the M14 was designed around the M1 Garand but it was not a finished rifle until the 50's.
Eugene Stoner was working on the AR design in the 50"s as well, In fact you could buy a AR 15 long before you could buy a M1A semi auto rifle so in reality you are comparing a old AR to a younger M1A.
I like both and that is where I stand! besides I cant afford to keep a M1A at every door but...

eQ
I sort of agree, although the AR platform has had a ton more product improvement. In reality, the AR and M14 platforms are two completely different rifles, and each have their own strengths and weaknesses.

I like both, own both, and shoot both. A rifle for every occasion.
 

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Acts like the spring is in backwards allowing the follower nose to dive,
Someone correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the dead end loop of the spring should be to the rear.
I could be wrong on that, (old guy memory) but hopefully someone else will chime in,,,,,,,,,,
At the very least , try spring and follower out of a properly functioning mag and see how that goes.
Be sure and take note of spring orientation as they come apart.
mark the parts out of the troubled mag with a sharpie or something similar as it is easy to get confused o_O ,
When you have more than one apart at a time.
Check the sides of the follower and the insides of the magazine for signs of drag or rub marks.......
Definitely don't just pitch it, it could be something simple as a broken spring etc.
CheckMate mags are good stuff !
I think a little detective work will have it back up and running! Good luck and let us know what you find.
 

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I'd take the magazine apart and rotate the spring, back to front.
Thank you for that and other gems. Have I mentioned that I appreciate both you and your contributions?

I have no smart @$$ery to add. Sorry. :)


Relevant? As my former wife used to say: Does a bear poop in the woods?
I think that if your criteria is, "Is it just like what the real 'Army Men' still use", while it had a resurgence and slow retirement, the 'yes' component of that gradient is inevitably fading, and probably mostly gone.

But that need not be the criteria for those of us who appreciate it for what it is, and always will be. It still does what it does, and for an individual, they get to make that choice. From the perspective of something on the other side, the most relevant aspect is the projectile and its potential intersection with that trajectory.

For me, I always loved dinosaurs, and don't see that ending.

Interestingly, while it is science fiction, in 'Jurassic Park', in a modern world, dinosaurs weren't relevant, were deemed 'unfit' to survive... until they were 'redeployed'. Of course, that would never happen...

Nice shooting @tet493! Thanks for sharing the evaluation.
 

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My $.02, I agree it's absolutely still relevant, and always will be, even long after the last one rolls off the production line.

The AR platform didn't make battle rifles obsolete - it made pistol caliber carbines, SMGs, and PDWs obsolete. Anything a pistol caliber carbine can do, an intermediate rifle cartridge carbine does better. Similar recoil and handling characteristics, superior terminal ballistics.

It does not shoot from prone, and/or at 300m+ better than the M14/M1A.
 

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I have been thinking about this post for a few days. I have written and deleted a few responses. Here is what I have finally come to: name a better battle rifle for 2022, including the ability to incorporate all the modern upgrades that are just expected on a military rifle these days, than the M14. Here is my take.

The FAL? Great rifle with an amazing service record, but very hard to modernize. Mounting optics on it is a small nightmare. Mounting all the other accessories is almost a non-starter. For these reasons first world countries have almost universally replaced it.

The G3? Again, great rifle. You can modernize it - if you have a spare $1500.00 for a complete SPUHR upgrade kit that replaces all the furniture. To be fair, the M14 needs parts replaced also to bring it into the modern era. However, there are several options and they are generally cheaper. The G3 is viable if you have the money, so I will give it that.

The AR-10? To be clear, I am referring to modern 7.62x51mm AR platforms here, not Stoner's original AR-10. They keep trying to put them in military service, and they keep finding durability problems that make them undesirable. They are very accurate and do work well as a specialist's rifle, most notably as a semi automatic sniper system. But as a rough and tumble battle rifle, they just are not preferred.

That leaves two Western rifles that can stand with the M14.

The SCAR-H was specifically designed with input of SOCOM to be a lighter battle rifle with modern ergonomics to replace the M14. It is a great rifle, but for the price, you can kit out an M14 with the chassis system and optics mount of your choice. The SCAR-17 civilian version has also proven to be cantankerous with any barrel length other than 16 inches. The SCAR will turn out lighter, so if you want the absolute optimum 7.62mm NATO battle rifle and are willing to pay top dollar, it is the number one pick.

The new M5 is the other one, but they are unobtanium at the moment. The new cartridge offers some real advantages over 7.62mm NATO, but a 22" M14 in 6.5 Creedmore can almost keep up with the ballistics.

If you want to go comm block, you have the Dragunov and its derivatives. They tend to be difficult to modernize, and obtaining parts and ammo is difficult and expensive in the West. They are good rifles in their own right, but not superior to the M14.

So I would conclude the M14 is completely viable in 2022. It's not the latest and greatest, and it is heavier than many competitors. But in spite of all the undeserved hate it gets in gun media, it remains one of the best battle rifles you can get your hands on. You can hang as much stuff on it as any AR if you are willing to put it in a modern chassis or stock. If you need a battle rifle, you can do worse than the M14.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
I have been thinking about this post for a few days. I have written and deleted a few responses. Here is what I have finally come to: name a better battle rifle for 2022, including the ability to incorporate all the modern upgrades that are just expected on a military rifle these days, than the M14. Here is my take.

The FAL? Great rifle with an amazing service record, but very hard to modernize. Mounting optics on it is a small nightmare. Mounting all the other accessories is almost a non-starter. For these reasons first world countries have almost universally replaced it.

The G3? Again, great rifle. You can modernize it - if you have a spare $1500.00 for a complete SPUHR upgrade kit that replaces all the furniture. To be fair, the M14 needs parts replaced also to bring it into the modern era. However, there are several options and they are generally cheaper. The G3 is viable if you have the money, so I will give it that.

The AR-10? To be clear, I am referring to modern 7.62x51mm AR platforms here, not Stoner's original AR-10. They keep trying to put them in military service, and they keep finding durability problems that make them undesirable. They are very accurate and do work well as a specialist's rifle, most notably as a semi automatic sniper system. But as a rough and tumble battle rifle, they just are not preferred.

That leaves two Western rifles that can stand with the M14.

The SCAR-H was specifically designed with input of SOCOM to be a lighter battle rifle with modern ergonomics to replace the M14. It is a great rifle, but for the price, you can kit out an M14 with the chassis system and optics mount of your choice. The SCAR-17 civilian version has also proven to be cantankerous with any barrel length other than 16 inches. The SCAR will turn out lighter, so if you want the absolute optimum 7.62mm NATO battle rifle and are willing to pay top dollar, it is the number one pick.

The new M5 is the other one, but they are unobtanium at the moment. The new cartridge offers some real advantages over 7.62mm NATO, but a 22" M14 in 6.5 Creedmore can almost keep up with the ballistics.

If you want to go comm block, you have the Dragunov and its derivatives. They tend to be difficult to modernize, and obtaining parts and ammo is difficult and expensive in the West. They are good rifles in their own right, but not superior to the M14.

So I would conclude the M14 is completely viable in 2022. It's not the latest and greatest, and it is heavier than many competitors. But in spite of all the undeserved hate it gets in gun media, it remains one of the best battle rifles you can get your hands on. You can hang as much stuff on it as any AR if you are willing to put it in a modern chassis or stock. If you need a battle rifle, you can do worse than the M14.
I am seeing M110s and SCARs still in use by premier shootas. Big army even adopted the HK M110A1. SCAR H is enjoyable and it’s super lightweight. If I had to choose, money wasn’t an object, and it was just a tool to keep me alive, I would just pick up one of the guns I listed above. BUT I just think the M14 is cooler :cool:

Acts like the spring is in backwards allowing the follower nose to dive,
Someone correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the dead end loop of the spring should be to the rear.
I could be wrong on that, (old guy memory) but hopefully someone else will chime in,,,,,,,,,,
At the very least , try spring and follower out of a properly functioning mag and see how that goes.
Be sure and take note of spring orientation as they come apart.
mark the parts out of the troubled mag with a sharpie or something similar as it is easy to get confused o_O ,
When you have more than one apart at a time.
Check the sides of the follower and the insides of the magazine for signs of drag or rub marks.......
Definitely don't just pitch it, it could be something simple as a broken spring etc.
CheckMate mags are good stuff !
I think a little detective work will have it back up and running! Good luck and let us know what you find.
Spring looks good. I bent the spring in a big C shape and it resolved the issue for now. The parkerizing is rough so it’s probably not letting the follower move freely with normal spring pressure.

My $.02, I agree it's absolutely still relevant, and always will be, even long after the last one rolls off the production line.

The AR platform didn't make battle rifles obsolete - it made pistol caliber carbines, SMGs, and PDWs obsolete. Anything a pistol caliber carbine can do, an intermediate rifle cartridge carbine does better. Similar recoil and handling characteristics, superior terminal ballistics.

It does not shoot from prone, and/or at 300m+ better than the M14/M1A.
What actually prompted me to finally go for the M1A I always wanted was the adoption of the Sig M5. I am extremely comfortable with the M4/M16 and wanted to see why they went back to a full power battle rifle. In a near peer scenario we might only be using a red dot operating at night, or long distance during the day? Battle Rifle is what they chose!
 

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The M-14 was brought back out of storage for the sand box festivities following 9/11. It filled a military purpose for the next ten years or so. But let's n ot argue over the exact period please.

However, at this time, I am under the impression thar the Army and Marines use other guns for missions that require battle rifle power. . . .and that requirement continues to evolve.

With the adoption of the M-5 rifle and the 6.8x51 cartridge, Big Army has officially turned its back on the M-14 but will still keep the 5.56 M-4 in the hands of many troops.

Is the M-14 still relevant? Not to the military folks. In my view, the M-14 is as relevant today as the M-1 Garand has been since the 1950s. It is a good-to-great firearm with a long history of documented performance in combat that has been superseded by other guns now or soon to be in service.

If you have an M-14 platform rifle, enjoy it. Let no one steal your joy.
 

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\Related: I was talking with our 11 year old grandson after viewing a video that mocked the Russian tanks in use in Ukraine today.

I pointed out to him that sure, modern ATGMs of all sizes can knock out these tanks (and about any NATO tank too). But if you unit is dug in on the prairie with nothing but small arms (no AT weapons), even a 70+ year old T-34 could really spoil your day.

The same is true for the M-14. If that is what your unit has in hand, it will do what it has done since adopted in the 1950s.. . .as will the Garand, and Springfield. If you need fire out to eight hundred or a thousand, they all can get it done. "Irrelevant; maybe. Ineffective; no.

Can the new NGSW "Spear" in 6.8x51 do it better? Probably, but that isn't the point.

As an aside: The Marines may be drifting away from the M-4 in favor of the IAR based on the HK 416 (DI vs piston). So the M-16/M-4 may soon become "irrelevant" to the Marines.
 
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