So I introduced myself in the new member section and now it's time for my first stupid noob questions. I just traded for my first M1A (I'm waiting for it to get out of gun jail here in California). I have wanted one for many years but had never had the chance to handle or shoot one before. It is supposed to be a "NIB" Springfield standard walnut. I was surprised to see the hand guard had a black crinkle finish instead of the normal brown fiberglass (see pic below) and was a little loose and rattled. Does Springfield offer the hand guard this way? Is it a common aftermarket piece or do you think a previous owner just painted it that way? Either way I think I might change it back to a stock factory one. The rest or the rifle looked new and the wood actually has some nice figure. I was also surprised to find a really nice 2 stage trigger on it. It's light and crisp, not at all what I expected from the factory on a standard. I plan to shoot it as is for a while but when it comes time to "upgrade" What would be a good first project for a noob?