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Just got my M1A "loaded" this past May and it's been perfect. But I know the perception is that quality of newer M1A's are not as good as older ones from say the 90's and back. Where does this perception come from? What has been your experience with your old vs. new M1A's?

Many Thanks,

Jerry
 

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I have a 09' and haven't had one problem with it but on the other hand, I think all the old guns were built with better quality and craftsmanship. I shot trap for the first time the other day and this guy had a 60's trap gun (Browning I think) and the craftsmanship was impressive and the shotgun was absolutely beautiful. BTW I shot a 15 and 21, probably beginners luck.
 

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I don't know about old vs new. Its more about in spec receivers, build quality, and good USGI parts. There are gaps were there are no GI parts and then out of spec receivers. I had a 124K serial # loaded model with a few GI small parts and a receiver that should have not left the factory. I sent the rifle back to the factory for a repairs with a bunch of GI parts and Springfield Inc. built me a rifle that is a total winner. It is sad that I had to do that with a $1500 rifle but it worked out in the long run. I almost gave up on the M14 type rifle. In the end my rifle cost me $2000 but I would not sell it for $3000 now. Some of cast repo parts from Springfield Inc. are the weak link now in there rifles. If yours works then shot it. If you are looking for hard duty use or to collect then its about GI parts content.
 

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I bought an M1A standard about 13 or 14 years ago, and it had some intermittant extraction problems when new. Maybe it had a slightly rough chamber, I dunno. After about a hundred rounds, it smoothed out and ran fine, though.

I just bought a squad scout a couple months ago, and it has run 100%.

I know it's not help, but that's the only "old vs new" experience I have personally.
 

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My M1a Loaded is about a year old and it works great. The rifle is deadly accurate. So... is an old M1a better? I guess so, according to the normal party line.

However, I have a feeling that demand for quality is greater now than ever. If an SAI receiver were to fall apart from metal fatigue, we would really hear about it. It doesn't happen.

Any original G.I. parts get an automatic quality pass, and that is probably deserved. But that takes nothing away from the great rifles being created today. The M1 and M14 were designed to be kick ass battle rifles and they are. And I got a piece of that.

Ok... where's my popcorn?
 

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I have a 12000x one I bought 11 years ago. I had a hammer hook break on it last year; I called Springfield they paid shipping both ways and fixed it. I have 24000x one no problems, but it is on its way back from Springfield, had it upgraded to National match. But with a heavy barrel instead of medium weight. It'll be here Monday, I'll post a report later on it. And lastly I have a 06000x one I picked up the first of this month, About 200 rounds down range with it not a hiccup. All of these are Springfield SAI rifles. The quality control may seem to slip, could be. But there customer service, and warranty service are tops in my book. And before I end this I need to say I came across an LRB build today for a very good price. I'm going back Sunday and if its still there it could be coming back to Carson City with me. But that will be another post.
 

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I just picked up a 1989 super match new in the box. It is a great rifle and shoots great. If you are happy with yours, thats all thats important.
 

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I don't think necessarily better but more preferable, at least to me. My M1A from the early 1990s came with a GI barrel, bolt, and op rod. I later added a GI trigger group. I would have a GI M14 receiver on it if I could. I just can't afford it.

I did have to send the rifle back to have the firing pin bridge recut, and I fixed the bolt roller/receiver impact issues on the rifle myself.

Some folks may be dismissive of commercial M1As, but Springfield Armory Inc. has worked for many years to make this rifle affordable and available to the common man. Which is me. And I appreciate that very much.

my .02
 

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I think the perception is the older ones came with/ or with more USGI parts, therefore the older ones are better.
 

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My late model m1a had a bolt that was dinging the receiver on firing. Springfield claimed it normal. I sold that gun and have found my fulton to have no such problem.
 

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Just got my M1A "loaded" this past May and it's been perfect. But I know the perception is that quality of newer M1A's are not as good as older ones from say the 90's and back. Where does this perception come from? What has been your experience with your old vs. new M1A's?

Many Thanks,

Jerry

Aside from possibility of having more USGI parts in a earlier model, SAI did change the contractor of their receivers. This was done somewhere around SN 100,000. Some consider this period as SAI's "Golden Years of receivers". I'm not sure why either. dozier
 

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I have an M1A from 1988 with all USGI parts and one made in 2010 with all
commercial parts.

Other than the bayonet lug, there's not a lot of difference between them.

It's interesting that the newer one has the cutout for the bolt roller on the
receiver just below the clip guide, while the older one from 1988 does not.

So much for the older ones being better?

Both are accurate and function perfectly.
 

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I bought a SA super match in 1980. S/N 168XX. It had all homemade parts and had multiple functioning issues and so-so accuracy. I returned the bolt and op-rod a year or so later and SA replaced them with new GI parts. That fixed the functioning and I redid the bedding when I took up NRA Highpower a few years after that. Shot great as long as I kept a fresh glass job in it but with no lug it had to be redone about once a year.
 

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I have a 12xxx series receiver 1of 100, winchester bolt everything else h&r, I put a 18.5 criterion medium weight barrel on it this year. The rifle has never given any problems.
 

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I own a still new in the box preban M-1A serial # 65K range, built with a chrome lined Winchester barrel, TRW oprod, bolt and trigger group, among other M14 clones...

Would I trade it for any modern post ban M-1A built with cast commercial parts?

Not on your life.

What's not to like about USGI M14 parts, especially over Taiwanese manufactured castings and non chrome lined commercial barrels?

But that's just my way of looking at the subject and your mileage may vary...

7th
 

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Just personal observation speaking here, but I think the question is best answered by how well the individual rifle was made, not absolutely when it was assembled. Mine is a pre-ban 1980's example with all USGI parts less the SAI receiver, and it runs like a watch. I have seen the very same thing in new rifles, and problems with both new and old also. Custom builds that I have seen seem to go as well as any made on a good day at a good factory. As long as the individual rifle was put together right, no serious problems tend to appear. JMO.
 

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I got a bad one

I bought an M1A National Match last year. Would not group. Shot a variety of ammo. No good. Sent it back. When returned, no change. While at the range an experienced M1A match shooter with three M1As used some head space gauges in it. It accepted a 'go', "no go" and "FIELD!" It had been ripping the heads off some of the brass and now there is a broken case stuck in the chamber. It had been doing that but had been able to remove the broken case with a ramrod and wire bruch. Not this time. Sent for a broken case remover. Didn't work. Sent for another broken case remover of a different make. Didn't work. So now I've got a $2,000 rifle in my gun safe that I cannot shoot.
 

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I think the Valley Ordnance receivers prior to about 94 or 95 are some of the better quality and nicer ones produced. When SAI had a lot of chrome lined take off GI barrels they would batch gauge them and Valley Ordnance would adjust the receiver barrel threads to insure a tight head space. These along with lots of GI parts available then made for some really nice standard grade rifles.
 
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