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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings, I am new here and looking for my first M14/M1A. I want as close to mil-spec as I can legally own (walnut stock, 22" barrel, other GI parts). I am in Georgia, so there won't be any problem with flash suppressor, bayonet lug, magazine capacity, etc.

Call me old-fashioned, but I feel like an American military rifle (or clone) should only contain US-made parts, so for me that pretty much rules out Springfield. I like the idea of a forged receiver since I am used to M1 rifles, but it's not a deal killer if otherwise. There are several options as far as I am concerned:

1. LRB M14SA. Looks like a beautifully-made rifle (I got to see one in person last fall), fairly expensive, long wait time (4 months they tell me). Right now this is my first choice.

2. James River Armory. They have rifles with their own receiver or with an LRB receiver. Look nice in the pictures but haven't seen one up close. Slightly less expensive than LRB, available now.

3. Fulton Armory. I have read their website and they appear to be a first-class operation. Receivers not forged but all made to GI dimensions. These also look good in the pictures. Prices in line with James River. Rifles apparently available now.

4. 7.62mm Firearms. Forged receiver. Look nice in pictures. Prices about the same as Fulton or James River. Available now, as near as I can tell.

5. Chinese: not for me.

6. Other options?

I am not particularly in a hurry to buy. I want a rifle that will shoot well and reliably now and for many years. I would welcome opinions from the knowledgeable folks on this board. Thanks!
 

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Resident Rascal
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I'm not sure if you can buy a M14 with all USGI parts. Even LRB, who builds a fine rifle, uses imported op rods and gas cylinders unless you pay an up charge.

The only way to have all American parts is to buy the parts and build it yourself I believe. I'd rather buy the rifle I like and replace a part or two. Wish you luck in shopping. Be sure to check out the PX here, you might find exactly what you want.
 

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I went with your option #2. They do not use their own receivers, however, they use LRB or 7.62 receivers. I believe all of the parts on the builds are military except for the receiver.
 

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Option #7: Buy parts in the PX and have LRB assemble them on one of their receivers.

That is the route that I went, I have more in my rifle, but I also have a lot of hand picked NOS parts on my rifle as well.
 

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Your option #6

Buy barrel, bolt and receiver assembled and head spaced from
LRB Arms, $1,569
or
7.62mm Firearms $1,275 (they may still have the group buy for $999).
or
Fulton Armory $999.95
Then buy the parts kit from CMP, (all USGI parts), $600. or LRB's parts kit some USGI and some new commercial parts $469.95. CMI magazines from 44mag.com or elsewhere.

Buy the book called "The M14 Complete Assembly Guide" by Walt Kuleck & Clint McKee for around $25. You can assemble it yourself. hand tools should not cost over $50. castle nut pliers, gas cylinder wrench, punches, hammer.
Doing it this way will help you learn about the M14 and your particular rifle.

God luck on your build or purchase.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Lots of good information here, thank you all for your input.

High Hat, I'll definitely keep an eye on the PX. I've already heard from one member of this board who has a very nice older Springfield for sale, that he has not put up on the PX yet.

RET DEP 04, the James River rifle (with either the 7.62 or LRB receiver) looks like a great choice. That is high on my list.

tmcfalls, having LRB build the rifle also sounds like a good idea. Expensive and a long-lead item, but at or close to top of the line. I'll keep that option in mind, too.

BrokenVet, building my own as you suggest, was my first inclination. Then I bought and read the Kulek/Mckee book you mentioned, and I can see there is more to this rifle than the Garands and Carbines I am used to. After I've had some hands-on time with one of these I may assemble my own for my second rifle (see I'm already planning ahead) but for now I am inclined to have my first put together by an experienced builder.

Again, thank you all. You have given me a lot to think about.
 

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I went with your option #2. They do not use their own receivers, however, they use LRB or 7.62 receivers. I believe all of the parts on the builds are military except for the receiver.
I just picked mine up from them. While there, I was talking to the owner and he told me mine was made with TRW parts kit, I checked and bolt and trigger housing and they ARE TRW so I'm very happy. He said he had 3 TRW kits left. My receiver is a 762 forged. When it's not so darned cold outside I'll take it to the range and test it out. I froze last week during the buffalo shoot at the club. (came in third in the black powder division, down from second place last year)
 

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I own a jra and before I bought it I called up Mark head of jra to ask him questions. I highly recommend them and call him up. He is a great guy but at the current time is at the shot show.
 

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There are a LOT of SA M1A with USGI parts; either older factory rifles or recent rifles that were upgraded by the owners.
 

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What M1A to pick

I have had few M1A's in the last few years. They were early Springfields pre 1000,000 or LRB's. I wanted a TRW gun,because I was told they were the best built. I thought I bought one got it home & it wasn't. I trusted the man because I work for him just under a year. That is why I didn't have him take it apart. It was a bucket of bolts. Ever day is a school day and I decided to gather the last of needed parts build one. I was told about LRB didn't know anything about them called them spoke to Lou. Being from the west, family in Calif. since 1848 did cotton to easterners. Lou had all the time in the world spoke with each other for 45min each time that sold me. Had him barrel up an action for me and away I went. Last year I went to the Shot Show only to met Lou and thank him. A friend was there who was a 2112 in the Corps look at the receiver told me it was close to a 14 he has ever seen. Everyone at LRB has been very good to deal with. I have dealt with Claude RA Parts and Mike&Dee at Sadlak good people. Myself and friends have put together 9 LRB's in last 3yrs all USGI matching manufacture's parts either NIW or excellent/very good condition. They only build 1.3 mill 14's compared to M1 6.5 mill take your time and make enjoyable. This has been a million $$$ education on M1A's for me. Also it made me realize in life its about who are your friends and who you can trust. Have fun. If you were on west coast I would introduce you to Pete who has become a treasured friend in the 14 world. Take care
 
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