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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum. I just bought my very first centerfire rifle, an M1A Socom II. It was between that and a CA legal AR-15, but something said to go with the M1A.

My question is with weight. This thing is heavy. :D I wanted to know what the best ways to bring down the weight are. (i knew these rifles are naturally heavy and I know the Socom II is worse because of the rails, but i just liked the look (i know shallow). Are there lighter stocks available? Are there any parts i could make out of aluminum or titanium that would lighten the gun up significantly without affecting the function or reliability? I work in an aerospace machine shop so I can pretty much mill or turn anything out of aluminum, titanium or stainless steel. Thanks for any advice.
 

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First off get rid of the bottom rail. There too damn big!! I added a 2.5" section of rail to the bottom of my Socom 16 and it added almost no wait. GI6
 

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Find a nice USGI fiberglass stock if yours has that crummy "krinkle" finish on it. I stripped one and the rifle lost a pound and a half, but it (the stock) was beat up underneath, a little paint and it was good to hook though...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
First off get rid of the bottom rail. There too damn big!! I added a 2.5" section of rail to the bottom of my Socom 16 and it added almost no wait. GI6
I thought it might come to that but when i removed the bottom rail, the thing barely weights anything! I expected it to add a lot of weight and it's about as light as i could make it. Maybe I'll get a chance to weigh the rifle both ways as see if there's really any significant difference.

Find a nice USGI fiberglass stock if yours has that crummy "krinkle" finish on it. I stripped one and the rifle lost a pound and a half, but it (the stock) was beat up underneath, a little paint and it was good to hook though...
That's really interesting, i had no idea the finish could weight so much, They must have layered it on thick! I don't know that i have the heart to start tearing into the original stock now (i just got the gun), but i may start looking for a bare stock to experiment with. Any other thoughts? I was thinking maybe someone made a plastic stock (like the ones on the new synthetic rem700's. those things are very very light weight. and maybe if there are any gunsmiths on here, someone could tell me if any of the main (read heavier) components could be made from a different metal and still function the same? Even a newbie like me knows the barrel action and bolt assy would probably have to stay the same but what about the whole piston assembly? Could that be made using lighter materials with similar coefficient of heat expansions?
 

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If you really want to make it lighter ditch all the rails, get a USGI fiberglass stock and hand guard (file the edges of the hand guard so it doesn't touch the stock) and only use 10 round magazines or even 5 round magazines. That's really all you can do...

Unless you want to be a real weight weenie then you can remove the clip guide, the sling mount hardware and install an M1 butt plate (remove the trap door) and a Smith Enterprise GLFS dovetail with just a thread protector and a NM scout front sight. If you have a few more hundred to spend HueyGunner makes lightweight stocks in the standard contour but are stiffer... I think I've heard they're $300 to $400 each but could be wrong. I think SA Inc.'s gas cylinders are slightly oversized so you may lose an ounce or two switching to a USGI gas cylinder and piston and Smith Enterprise gas plug.

-OR-

Lift weights for a few minutes each day...

-OR-

Decide you made the wrong decision, sell the Socom II, buy an AR-15, deck it out with rails, flashlights, lasers and a can opener so it weighs more than the Socom II did initially but you don't care cause "the look" screams Starship Trooper and you feel the need to kill some bugs.

Don't ask what my rifle weighs, you'll run away screaming and have nightmares for weeks.
 

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...Decide you made the wrong decision, sell the Socom II, buy an AR-15, deck it out with rails, flashlights, lasers and a can opener so it weighs more than the Socom II did initially but you don't care cause "the look" screams Starship Trooper and you feel the need to kill some bugs...
Hey! Under all that stuff, the Starship Troopers were carrying M14's!! That's why they could kill the bugs. GI2
 

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Hey! Under all that stuff, the Starship Troopers were carrying M14's!! That's why they could kill the bugs. GI2
Actually the "Morita" originally contained a fully-automatic Ruger AC556 machine gun and Ithaca shotgun... Well one of them did at least... Some others had Ruger Mini-14's and fake shotguns in them... explains why it took 1000+ rounds to kill one bug... good thing they had lots of .223 available.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
ehhhh you'll get used to it GI2
just dont go hiking through the woods with it
Well one of the reasons i picked this gun (besides the whole starship trooper thing of course) is because it seemed a great all around rifle, big enough and accurate enough for hunting (at reasonable distances), semi auto for home defense / SHTF type stuff. Seemed like a jack of all trades, master of none type rifle. Sooo yeah, i was hoping to go hiking through the woods on occasion....

When you start shooting it you will be grateful for the weight.
I've shot about a hundred rounds through it so far and it's great, used iron sights as well as the EOtech sight on it and had no issues with it, Seemed like the compensator tip took care of most of the recoil so i don't think dropping some pounds would affect that too much.

I guess there's no such thing as a perfect gun but so far the only complaint i have is the weight of it. My wife and I are both allowing ourselves only one handgun and one rifle (we don't want to become collectors or invest too much money into it). So I picked the Springfield XD9 and the M1A Socom II, My wife picked the Glock 17 and really likes the Socom as well but feels it's too heavy to be an all around type rifle so she's gonna probably end up with an AR-15 for a gun she can hunt/protect herself with, that is unless i can make the M1A light enough.
 

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I wouldn't recommend the Socom for home defense. A .308 will go through the home invader, through your wall, through your neighbor's wall and still be lethal. Then you got little Sally's untimely death on your conscience as well as her father's death who had sent her over to ask to borrow your 7/8 inch wrench to tighten the fitting on their kitchen sink. Unfortunately it was late and dark and you thought a pygmy was in the house trying to steal your good silverware.

Think pistol/revolver or shotgun for home defense. That way just little Sally has to die for B&E and then her father and mother can hate you for the rest of their lives together.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
ehhhh you'll get used to it GI2

just dont go hiking through the woods with it
I actually do have the xd9 for home defense, the rifle is more for zombies and hordes of roaming gangs pillaging and raping in the aftermath of an economic ans social collapse. I mean who would have more than two mags if it was for the occasional B/E?
 

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Just is

"she's gonna probably end up with an AR-15 for a gun she can hunt/protect herself with, that is unless i can make the M1A light enough."

I've had my SocII for about a year 1/2 and it is definitely a beast in more than just the weight department. I've read the suggestions on USGI stocks and such, but my .02 is that it is what it is. You are correct on the bottom rail, it doesn't feel like it weighs anything when you take it off. I utilize the rail system for a vert grip on the bottom, sling swivel on the left, and QD ringed Scout Scope for the top. Haven't gotten to the flashlight, laser, margarita machine, and bug light yetGI7

So personally I think you will adapt to the weight or trade it off cuz there aren't enough things that you could ever do to make it literally a "light weapon." But it sure is a gas! I don't know how you'd ever go to a varmint rifle after blasting lead down range with the deuce though...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I don't know how you'd ever go to a varmint rifle after blasting lead down range with the deuce though...
Yeah, guess i'm just gonna have to hit the weight room :D

oh a side note, are we not allowed to use the "Z" word here? it gets changed to "thugs" automatically? GI8
 

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socom II will scare the zomb!es back into their graves. I love mine rails and all, like daddy8ball said get a forward grip on the bottom rail (I ahve a grip pod on mine) for a better handle on that weight
 

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I took the bottom rail off mine and installed a standard front sling loop. The top and side rails do everything I need. Don't know how much weight it saves but it sure is easier to manuver.
 

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The extra weight is nice when you are firing fast and trying to keep it on the paper, at least for me. It can get a little much lugging that thing around until you get a nice sling for it. I was put off by the weight at first (because i'm a weak armed computer geek lol) but the more time I have spent with it the more i have grown into it. It's also nice knowing that i can use it as an improvised mace to club the sense back into someone/thing that isn't worth the $.42 round. Love this gun!
 

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Are you using aforward mounted optic? If not I recommend removing the rail system, install a regular hand guard, a SEI extended bolt release, Sadlak extended mag release and recoil spring guide. If you need an optic mount it on a Sadlak aluminum mount and use a DWP cheekrest. If you need a bipod use a Sadlak bipod/swivel stud. If you need a flasklight use an inexpensive rail from cheaper than dirt. The rifle will weigh less and balance better.
 
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