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M1A "tanker" with 18.5" barrel need info

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Greetings all,
I just bought an M1A rifle (modern long gun serial #268*** (two hundred sixty eight thousand # # #)). Bought used but near new.
I just want to learn more about it because it's my first M1A and though it comes with a scout squad length barrel (18.5") it's called a "Tanker". My research shows Tankers with a 16" barrels and muzzle brakes like the SOCOM. Mine has an 18.5" barrel, "Tanker" inscribed on barrel top ( see photo) and traditional flash hider with bayonet lug and no forward mount for scout style optics. Can anyone explain or shed light on this?
Also what contour barrel is this? Heavy, medium or standard?
Thank you for your knowledge and sharing!

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First of welcome to the forum.

Shedding a little light on your questions.

18.5" barreled M1A's are called Squad Scouts. There was an older name that slips my memory of hand. The new name has been instilled by Springfield.

The 16" barreled version is called A SOCOM also introduced by Springfield in 2004ish.

Lastly the 19'' version is the tanker that came to be in the Vietnam era. Designed to make the rifle more yield worthy in the jungles. Bula, a commercial company, reintroduced this version to bring back the "paratrooper version."

I'm sure others will chime in with more knowledge than I.

Hope you like your new rifle. We all would love to see some pics.
 

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Greetings all,
I just bought an M1A rifle (modern long gun serial #268*** (two hundred sixty eight thousand # # #)). Bought used but near new.
I just want to learn more about it because it's my first M1A and though it comes with a scout squad length barrel (18.5") it's called a "Tanker". My research shows Tankers with a 16" barrels and muzzle brakes like the SOCOM. Mine has an 18.5" barrel, "Tanker" inscribed on barrel top ( see photo) and traditional flash hider with bayonet lug and no forward mount for scout style optics. Can anyone explain or shed light on this?
Historically the term 'Tanker' referred to an M1 Garand shortened to a barrel length of 18.25". Chamberings could be either .30-06 or 7.62/.308.

Despite internet commentary to the contrary, the military actually produced a *few* Tanker prototypes (just how many is disputed) of these shortened Garand, all then in .30-06, but the project was canned after the war ended.

Commercially built 'Tanker' Garands - in '06 and .308 - have been made over the years by various outfits. I have an Arlington Ordinance .308 Tanker and it runs fine. Tanker op rods are also reduced in length as part of the 'conversion' process ... In recent years Fulton Armory and even the CMP have offered their own M1 Tanker builds, typically in .308.

In the early 2000s, Tim Shufflin of Shuff's Parkerizing began experimenting with shortening a Garand to true over-all carbine-length using a 16.1" barrel and a correspondingly shorten op rod. He found that using a Schuster Mfg. adjustable gas plug allowed the M1 gas system to be tuned to the energy level of the user's ammo and would assure reliable cycling without risk of damage to the bolt, op rod, gas cylinder, etc. As part of the conversion, he also uses Wolff XP recoil springs and installs a cross-pin modification to the follower rod.

His experiments resulted in the 'Mini-G,' so named to distinguish it from all the previous 18.25" M1 Tankers in circulation. He builds them using Criterion barrels in .308 and .30-06, and has also built many chambered in .35Whelen, also with Criterion barrels. Variations on Shuff's 'Mini-G' builds include adding Schuster M1 muzzle brakes or Ultimak forward rail mounts in place of the handguard in order to run scout optics or RDSs.

In the .308 chambering, Shufflin can also convert a standard M1 to what's known as a 'mag-fed Mini-G,' which accepts M1A/M14 mags. It has the same 16.1" barrel and the other mods described above, except he can add a stripper clip guide to the receiver as on an M1A.

Getting back to the O.P.'s question, SAI's current 'Tanker' M1A appears to be quite similar to Shuff's mag-fed Mini-G.

But the minor quibble is in using the moniker 'Tanker' for a 16" barrelled M1A, when the term originally applied to an 18.25" M1.

Edited to add photo of .308 mag-fed 16.1" Mini-G with 10-rd SAI mag and Sig Romeo5 mini-RDS on Ultimak Scout rail mount.
 

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Historically the term 'Tanker' referred to an M1 Garand shortened to a barrel length of 18.25". Chamberings could be either .30-06 or 7.62/.308.

Despite internet commentary to the contrary, the military actually produced a *few* Tanker prototypes (just how many is disputed) of these shortened Garand (all then in .30-06) but the project was canned after the war ended.

Commercially built 'Tanker' Garands - in '06 and .308 - have been made over the years by various outfits. I have an Arlington Ordinance .308 Tanker and it runs fine. Tanker op rods are also reduced in length as part of the 'conversion' process ... In recent years Fulton Armory and even the CMP have offered their own M1 Tanker builds, typically in .308.

In the early 2000s, Tim Shufflin of Shuff's Parkerizing began experimenting with shortening a Garand to true over-all carbine-length using a 16.1" barrel and a correspondingly shorten op rod. He found that using a Schuster Mfg. adjustable gas plug allowed the M1 gas system to be tuned to the energy level of the user's ammo and would assure reliable cycling without risk of damage to the bolt, op rod, gas cylinder, etc. As part of the conversion, he also uses Wolff XP recoil springs and installs a cross-pin modification to the follower rod.

His experiments resulted in the 'Mini-G,' so named to distinguish it from all the previous 18.25" M1 Tankers in circulation. He builds them using Criterion barrels in .308 and .30-06, and has also built many chambered in .35Whelen, also with Criterion barrels. Variations on Shuff's 'Mini-G' builds include adding Schuster M1 muzzle brakes or Ultimak forward rail mounts in place of the handguard in order to run scout optics or RDSs.

In the .308 chambering, Shufflin can also convert a standard M1 to what's known as a 'mag-fed Mini-G,' which accepts M1A/M14 mags. It has the same 16.1" barrel and the other mods described above, except he can add a stripper clip guide to the receiver as on an M1A.

Getting back to the O.P.'s question, SAI's current 'Tanker' M1A appears to be quite similar to Shuff's mag-fed Mini-G.

But the minor quibble is in using the moniker 'Tanker' for a 16" barrelled M1A, when the term originally applied to an 18.25" M1.

Edited to add photo of .308 mag-fed 16.1" Mini-G with 10-rd SAI mag and Sig Romeo5 mini-RDS on Ultimak Scout rail mount.
Your knowledge intrigues me. After my current build, I have plans to build my own SOCOM and have read much about them on this site. I have a Wolff XP recoil/hammer spring package. DO you think I should use these in my build?
Using the shortened SOCOM gas plug or the Schuster.
 

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Mine has an 18.5" barrel, "Tanker" inscribed on barrel top ( see photo) and traditional flash hider with bayonet lug and no forward mount for scout style optics.
The photo is a bit fuzzy. RNGR2

I suspect your rifle has been rebarreled, but you can call SAI Customer Service and give them the serial number. They will tell you how it left the factory.
 

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First of welcome to the forum.

Shedding a little light on your questions.

18.5" barreled M1A's are called Squad Scouts. There was an older name that slips my memory of hand.
Bush rifle.
 

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Interesting.
To be Canadian legal requires a minimum 18.5" barrel length. The SAI "SCOUT SQUAD" or "BUSH" rifles I have seen had 18" barrels. And none were msrked "Tanker".
I wonder if your rifle has been re-barreled?

We have several 18.5" M14 varients here up North in Canuckistan. The imported from China factory built versions have two models.

1.) Fitted with a full length flashider, with the standard spline mount and usual front sight and bayonet lug

2.) With threaded on "FAUX muzzle brake", that is reversible, installed either concentric with the barrel, or extended out. The front sight is a gas ring type. This is the so called 18.5" SOCOM model.

3.) There are many many DIY "shorties" made with chopped down 22"barrel, usually with a threaded on 1/2" x 28 tpi muzzle device.

A few better pictures would be appreciated.
Thanks
(;-)
 

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In your serial number range, the rifle would have left the factory as a "Scout."

Someone removed the scope mount, handguard and brake. A standard lugged flash hider has been installed. The lug will make it difficult, if not impossible, to remove the gas plug for cleaning.
 

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In your serial number range, the rifle would have left the factory as a "Scout."

However, it looks like you have medium weight after-market barrel. A call to SAI will let you know how it left the factory.

The lug on the flash hider will make it difficult, if not impossible, to remove the gas plug for cleaning.
 

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In your serial number range, the rifle would have left the factory as a "Scout."

Someone removed the scope mount, handguard and brake. A standard lugged flash hider has been installed. The lug will make it difficult, if not impossible, to remove the gas plug for cleaning.
My 18.5 Wolfe Barrel ,with USGI Flash Hider, has just enough room , to come off .Probably depends on the Barrel/FH.
 

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Your knowledge intrigues me. After my current build, I have plans to build my own SOCOM and have read much about them on this site. I have a Wolff XP recoil/hammer spring package. DO you think I should use these in my build?
Using the shortened SOCOM gas plug or the Schuster.
For the M1A platform, Schuster Mfg. makes an adj. gas plug. In a standard length M1A, the normal length op rod/recoil spg is fine.

http://www.schustermfg.com/m1a-adjustable-gas-plug/

Going shorter will depend on what SAI recommends, but you can always experiment with running a Wolff XP M1A/M14 spg in the SAI SOCOM or Tanker.

The key is to achieve reliable cycling with whatever ammo you're intending to shoot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
thanks

First of welcome to the forum.

Shedding a little light on your questions.

18.5" barreled M1A's are called Squad Scouts. There was an older name that slips my memory of hand. The new name has been instilled by Springfield.

The 16" barreled version is called A SOCOM also introduced by Springfield in 2004ish.

Lastly the 19'' version is the tanker that came to be in the Vietnam era. Designed to make the rifle more yield worthy in the jungles. Bula, a commercial company, reintroduced this version to bring back the "paratrooper version."

I'm sure others will chime in with more knowledge than I.

Hope you like your new rifle. We all would love to see some pics.
Thanks for the warm welcome and information. :)
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
thanks

Springfield made tanker rifles for a minute, before they was called scouts. Like usual I could be wrong, but seems like they advertised a tanker model
Pretty sure that is what I have here.
Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Mine has an 18.5" barrel, "Tanker" inscribed on barrel top ( see photo) and traditional flash hider with bayonet lug and no forward mount for scout style optics.
The photo is a bit fuzzy.


I suspect your rifle has been rebarreled, but you can call SAI Customer Service and give them the serial number. They will tell you how it left the factory.

Thanks. You can barely see the word “Tanker” on the top of the barrel. Serial 2684XX
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I will try and get a better pic

The photo is a bit fuzzy. RNGR2

I suspect your rifle has been rebarreled, but you can call SAI Customer Service and give them the serial number. They will tell you how it left the factory.
apologies for the bad photo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
thanks and a better pic

Interesting.
To be Canadian legal requires a minimum 18.5" barrel length. The SAI "SCOUT SQUAD" or "BUSH" rifles I have seen had 18" barrels. And none were msrked "Tanker".
I wonder if your rifle has been re-barreled?

We have several 18.5" M14 varients here up North in Canuckistan. The imported from China factory built versions have two models.

1.) Fitted with a full length flashider, with the standard spline mount and usual front sight and bayonet lug

2.) With threaded on "FAUX muzzle brake", that is reversible, installed either concentric with the barrel, or extended out. The front sight is a gas ring type. This is the so called 18.5" SOCOM model.

3.) There are many many DIY "shorties" made with chopped down 22"barrel, usually with a threaded on 1/2" x 28 tpi muzzle device.

A few better pictures would be appreciated.
Thanks
(;-)
here is a better picture of the gun, thanks
 

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