« Why You Should Aways Ask For Help | Main | Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Put Guns In Those Pawnshops »

June 18, 2007

This page has been moved to http://www.fieldandstream.com/blogs/gun-nut

If your browser doesn’t redirect you to the new location, please visit The Gun Nut at its new location: www.fieldandstream.com/blogs/gun-nut.

M-14 vs. M-1

This is the M-14. I wouldn’t give you a s**t for it.”—SFC Kenneth Kane, introducing November Company, 4th Tng Rgt. to the Army’s new rifle, November, 1963. Kane, a Korea combat vet, swore by the M-1.


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference M-14 vs. M-1:



My father is a Marine veteran of Vietnam. He trained with the M-14 and was issued an M-16 in country. First time the M-16 jammed on him he was re-issued a M-14. To this day he loves that gun and is saving money to buy the civilian version.

He can't speak for the M-1 which is legandary in its own right, but as far as he was concerned the M-14 functioned reliably and was a great combat rifle.

Clay Cooper


M-14, M1A and M1 Grand are the best firearms ever made.


I recall many units in the 60's wouldn't issue the M-16 over the M-14. M-16 reliability was an issue then. You could carry 3X’s the M-16 ammo as compared to M-14 rounds. I always thought the blue-green fiberglass M-14 stocks were *Strange*.

All in all, I preferred the M-14.

M-1 was and is a great battle rifle even after all this time. After alot of tinkering a M-1 is quite accurate.


the m1 and the m14 are very forminable arms. ( They are basically the same rifle with the added excption of the m14's external clip. they are very accurate and a competant rifle man can lay down a withering rate of fire from up to 600 yds away; with great accuracy. The m1's main drawback is its internal clip that is expelled with a very loud ching that alerts everyone within 100yrds that you are out of ammo.as to how good the m14 is; it has never been sold into civilians hands



There are M14s floating around if you have the money for such a thing.


M-14's are readily available through the Civilian Marksmanship program.

Sprinfield Am. sells M-14's, but they're pricey although I think some models are competition ready.


CMP has M1 Garands and Carbines, but not 14s.

The only reason M14s aren't sold to civilians is because of the capability to fire full auto- you can get one if you want to pay unheard of thousands and thousands, but the civilian model is the M1A- the same thing, minus full auto.

Matt Westrich

Best ammo ever.
You left out the 25-06, superior to the 6mm.
As someone who has just bought a .458 Win Mag, it hurt to have you slam it. Though I bought with the intent to reload a bit heavier than 45-70 loading and use it in thick brush for deer.
You hit the 7mm Mag right on the head! This cartridge is over hyped.
Great article,

Richard G.

September 1973 Parris Island, SC. My training platoon was the last group of Marines to be issued the M-14 in Boot Camp. The group behind us had the M-16. They used to make us stand out on the parade ground with the weapon in our hands, arms out streched in front of us. Holding the weapon up until you broke. While the M-16 platoons marched in circles around us. It is still my all time favorite weapon!

Ralph the Rifleman

I agree with Clay, the M-1, and M-14(M-1A) are the best firearms ever made. I like the balance of the M-1 for shooting, and it can be had in .308 caliber in currently manufactured models. Our armory on base had a number of M-1s and M-14s for the augmentation people, if needed; all the rifles were in very good condition and they made me drool everytime I saw them!

Peter C

The M-1 was my assigned weapon on active duty in the late 1950s. When I got out of the Army, surplus M-1s were selling in the gun shops for about $85, which I thought was a lot of money. Twenty years later, I was happy to find an accurized, glass-bedded National Match M-1 for ten times that amount. I still have it, and it has been a terrific shooter.


Sorry, Conner. Check on your info. I physically saw sixteen M-14's in my club's gun safe that were for our CMP. I thought it odd at the time all these M-14's had those blue-green fiberglass stocks.

Excuse the spelling.

Greg Allen

The M14 was DOA if you ask me. The military should have seen that it was staring at 1930's technology in 1958. At ten pounds fully loaded, sporting a 22" barrel and wooden stock... it should have seemed obvious that it wasn't the rifle America was going to lead the world with.

Dr. Ralph

I've shot the Springfield Armory M1 and it's big AND heavy and the one I shot was extremely accurate. I suppose the M14 is the same gun with selective fire. Is SFC Kane related to the people on the crossbow debate who are adamantly against any and all change? I'm not an expert but my hunting buddy did three tours in 'Nam starting in the early 60's and he would not carry an M-16. Saw too many men die when they jammed.

Black Rifle addict

Give me an AR type rifle any day of the week for battle, or hunting. Period.
Dave's article/quote deals with the M-1 and M-14 debate. If I am not mistaken, the M-14's design is based off the M-1 in basic operations. The barrel was shortened and a magazine feed was added to the M-14 model, and I don't know about carrying one of those monsters over hill and dale in battle but I know the enemy was in a hurtin` status when a squad of men opened up on them with /06 fire!(.308 in the case of the M-14). Now that is some serious firepower!

Steve C

Besides being too long and too heavy, the M14 was totally unmanageable in full-auto mode. Quite a handicap in a combat situation.


Its quite true the M-14 was unmanageable in full auto. But as far as I know, and from what my father has told me, it was made very clear to him in training that a Marine did not fire the M-14 in full auto...he was to select his targets. Now I know in the heat of combat things might and did change, but my father was quite honest in saying the only time he fired the M-14 in full auto was in training. As he said, if you needed full auto, then you hoped you had a M-60 in the squad to really lay down the firepower.

Steve C

My comment on the full-auto issue is with regard to this being a fairly significant failure on the part of a main battle rifle.

Post-WWII analysis of millions of battle reports concluded that future fighting would be up close and personal with the infantry throwing out the most metal merging as the victor. So, full-auto performance was a critical design feature that the M14 did poorly in. Didn’t matter. The battle rifle application theory proved to be misstep and most countries have long since abandoned it as their primary infantry weapon.

Back to the original quote by Sgt Kane, it’s just an opinion. Chesty Puller, who I admire greatly, stated during his fighting in WWII that he felt the Springfield ’03 was a superior weapon to the Garand. My opinion is that the best battle rifle has yet to be built. And looking at the current candidates for the next generation of combat rifles, the best one is still years off.

Dr. Ralph

Yeah Steve C I'm with you on the part about the best battle rifle has yet to be built. The vet I said wouldn't carry an M16 used an M2 carbine on all three tours so he could go full auto and rumor has it the reciever made it back to the states down his pants...


I don't see how anyone can say the ARs are anywhere near as good as the M-14. The only benefits the ARs have are:
1) ARs can be lighter
2) 223s are smaller and more can be carried.

Those two benefits don't mean squat when the 223s have stopping problems unlike the 308s. As for weight, the M-14 can be very light with the shorter barrels, and plastic external parts making them comparable to the AR. Take a look at the Springfield SOCOM models.

The 308s are also a more accurate round at longer ranges. Sgt. Herbert B. Hancock shot a terrorist at more than 1000yds, a 223 could never do that.

The M-14 is an all around better weapon than the ARs.


Mark, I was under the impression you were talking about the formerly government sponsored CMP


which has stated before that it has no plans of acquiring and that it is unlikely that it will acquire any M14s. Your local club may be a different matter entirely.

The US battle rifle would have been the FN-FAL if not for rigged tests that favored the M-14.

The US military really mucked up when they didn't adopt the 280 British cartridge in favor of the 7.62 NATO.

Black Rifle addict

I agree that the .308 makes for better sniper application then the .223, in most cases.
Dr.Ralph brings up a good point about the M-2 Carbine. I have heard some Korean war vets swear by it, or against it!My sister's father-in-law was issued the carbine, and traded it for a Thompson and swore by the .45ACP in battle--close range of course!
My point is experience speaks louder then words, and even the battle boys differ on weapon choice because it does come down to personal choice!



You made an interesting point with the CMP. As I recall our club acquired these M-14's for use with the program, but I'm not certain if this CMP was gov't-sponsered. Reason being I *think* in this area Cornell U. was administering CMP and was looking to red-line the entire program due PC. I might have my facts wrong on this, but that's what I recall.

How is the CMP going in other bloggers' areas?


I have no idea. I know of some people who have bought from them, and they sure do have a good deal on surplus .30-06 ammo. I would love to have one of their M1 Garands, or Carbines, or anything else they might throw my way.

Our Blogs