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This slotting the Piston appeared to have come about to ease the gas pressure when 180 gr. were going to be used in the M14's. The 180 gr. bullet was consider to have better wind bucking qualities. Slotting was not done to improve accuracy of the rifle itself. The popular 168 bullet served for years out to the 600 yard line. The 1000 yard shooters liked to use the m1 and 190 gr. bullets back in the past days. The scores fired then are competitive compared to those fired today. The rifle are better today, the shooters are better trained but the scores are not convincing to suggest now is an improvement over yesterday.


Keep in mind, when you change to a slotted piston the results, if good, may not be because of the slot, this new piston may fit better. If you slot the existing piston from an excellent shooting rifle the results may diminish. This has proven to be the case in my own experience. If your rifle is satisfactory for your needs, do not take the chance of slotting the piston in hopes of improvement. I have lost track of the piston mods tried, some have worked out well and others added yet another piston to an overflowing box.

A poor grouping rifle is a good place to change pistons before getting too involved with other things. If your car stops running, check the gas tank first,
 

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Thanks, Art.

What's happened is our 185 gr Berger shooter needs the edge to keep from outshooting his rifle. Maybe Ted or Gus is slotting USGI pistons. It's not just a shooting challenge but a supply-chain challenge nowadays for anybody determined to whip the X-course with a 14 clone.

Your comment about the M1 and the 190 SMK . Yeah, it's a good bullet. I didn't use it but lots of good shooters did. We'd pull the 173's from M72 and replace with 180 SMK's. They shot long range very well, like the 175 does now, but a little gentler than the 190. Op rods starting with the post-WW II D35382 SA through the 65's and 77's hold up fine. I'd hesitate to test a valuable WW II uncut or small-cut op rod with heavy-bullet loads, however.
 
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