Thursday, May 5, 2011

Christmas in May

A couple years ago, I picked up an M1 Garand in fair condition for a decent price. I actually bought it from an Athabascan fellow at a gun show. He said, "She looks kinda beat up, but she's a shooter." He wasn't wrong; . I took it to the range and ran three clips of crappy Russian ammo through it. Learned my lesson the hard way: don't use crappy Russian ammo in this workhorse. I ended up with a case separation on shot number 24.

My brother-in-law's dad (whose sole purpose in life seems to be to collect two or more of every single World War II battle rifle) took a look at it and got me the name of a gunsmith who could take care of it for me. Then he took the stock back home with him and refinished it. He loves WWII guns that much.

Anyway, repairing this beauty was quite a ways down on my list of things I need to get done. Even though the cost is relatively low, I simply can't afford the time and money involved to fix a rifle that isn't part of my critical infrastructure. It's not my battle rifle, it's not my hunting rifle, my carbine, or my shotgun. And I don't have Hmong gang-bangers on my front lawn threatening my neighbors.

Get off my lawn.
So, she became a safe queen. It was my intention to, one of these days, get around to getting that case out, but it never happened. Then, a couple of weeks ago, my brother-in-law said, "My dad wants that M1. Would you trade it straight across to him for his M14?"

Be still my beating heart.
I love my M1, but I've wanted an M14 since I was 15 years old. I see Garands at every gun show; the M14s are few and far between and usually relatively expensive. I love the free market: I get what I want, he gets what he wants. I once traded a Mini-14 for a Mossberg 500, because I had no use for the rifle and needed a bear gun. Sure, I could have sold the Mini-14 and turned around and bought a Mossberg for less. But he needed a varmint gun, and I needed a bear gun and we were both happy in the end. I've had that shotgun for years now, and it's killed one bear and a half dozen birds. I've also pulled it out once in a potential defensive situation--a couple of scumbags were threatening my next door neighbor with their pickup, and almost ran him over. A slug through the radiator would have solved that problem, and the followup 00 buck would have settled any complaints the driver might have had.

I'm looking forward to another free market trade.


  1. A M14 was the first rifle larger than a .22 that I ever fired, courtesy of Uncle Sam. Congrats on the 'new' rifle.

  2. A good trade I would say. I boulght my first Spingfield M1-A1,civilian M-14 a couple years ago, Love that Rifle.