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    Is this okay?

    First question for the experts. Short version is my Garand's op rod is really hard to move manually once the bolt has closed on a snap cap.

    Here are the details:
    Rifle is a recent CMP Special in 30.06, receiver is HRA serial #4698***, 1953 vintage from what I've read online. Haven't had it apart yet, but it should have all the components as described by CMP, including new barrel and walnut stock. Appearance is near new, including the receiver - no pitting or dents anywhere on the outside.
    Action works smoothly on an empty chamber. No dragging on the new stock from what I can feel. Spring resistance, lock back and bolt rotation all look and feel correct.
    Snap caps are spent shell brass & primers, various head stamps, with what appear to be standard size 150 grain bullets. Overall length matches the PRVI Partizan M1 specific loads I have.

    Here's what happens:
    From a full clip, bolt will strip off cartridges with occasional forward assistance on the op rod. However, the first time the bolt closed on a snap cap I couldn't pull back the op rod to eject the round. It didn't move at all, even with quite a bit of effort. My first thought was the snap cap was oversized and stuck in the chamber, or the chamber was dirty. I went online to see if there was a recommended procedure. Didn't want to break the extractor. Most common answer was to hold the rifle vertical and gently thump the butt on the floor while applying downward pressure on the op rod. It worked and the extractor looked okay.

    So next I cleaned the barrel and chamber, then inserted each of 8 snap caps in the chamber, looking for any overly tight fits. Some were more snug than others, but all could be backed out easily using a fingernail or screwdriver blade. Snap cap sizing doesn't appear to be the problem. Haven't done this with live ammo for comparison due to my inexperience and slam fire possibility.

    After confirming that it's okay to do, I then inserted a single snap cap in the chamber and allowed the bolt to close from about 2/3 of its travel. Did this with each snap cap and each time the op rod wouldn't move without the butt thump procedure. I did notice that the force needed to open the bolt seemed to lessen after a few times, so I applied a little Wilson grease to every contact surface I could get to. That seemed to help a bit, but the op rod still won't open the bolt even with a good strong pull.

    When the op rod sticks, it won't move at all, as opposed to the resistance point when the op rod contacts the bolt for rotation on an empty chamber (hope I'm saying this right!) No movement as opposed to the slight movement before the first resistance when pulling back.

    So my question is, is this okay? If not, what are your recommendations? I don't want to fire the rifle if this could bend the op rod, or worse. It seems like parts wearing in, but there is too much at stake to simply clean, lube and shoot the rifle, IMHO.

    Sorry to be so long winded with this. I know it's a tough, robust design - just trying to be careful!

    P.S. Forgot to mention, trigger pull on the closed bolt doesn't seem to make any difference. Did some of the butt thumps after pulling the trigger, some not, same results.
    Last edited by rsu11; 05-02-2019, 03:53 PM.

    #2
    Get rid of the snap cap. Take rifle to the range and fire with live ammo. Before doing so disassemble rifle and make sure rifle is properly lubricated with grease in proper points. No need to buy so called high tech gun grease. A tube of quality wheel bearing grease is overkill, cheap and will last you several lifetimes

    Comment


      #3
      Did you full length size the brass before building the dummy rounds? If not, there's your problem. Or, since different bullets require different acceptable OAL's you may be exceeding that OAL. Load too long and they will jam in the chamber. The P. S. I don't understsnd at all. Trigger pull has nothing to do with butt thumps and how do you determine trigger pull without the bolt closed?

      You are over thinking this and hand loading blanks or hand operating the action tells you nothing about rifle function. I suspect poorly constructed, out of spec blanks are the root of your problem.

      Follow Orlando's suggestions. CMP does not ship out improperly manufactured Specials that won't load or chamber properly made ammo or blanks. They are test fired before ever leaving CMP.

      If some of you blanks were snug they are not properly sized. They should drop in and fall out. Chances are those are not fully inserting when you put them in and when the bolt slams closed on them they are slam forming and almost impossible to extract being seized tightly into the chamber.
      Last edited by lapriester; 05-02-2019, 04:41 PM.

      Comment


        #4
        This is a good reference for where to apply grease. I do ALL points, including the op rod catch:
        http://www.garandgear.com/m1-garand-grease
        Orlando is right, any decent automotive grease will be fine.
        The thief may possess something he stole, but he does not own it.
        The owner has a right to take his property back from the thief.

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks guys. Overall, I'm getting that this is not a big deal, so I'll move on to disassembly, cleaning, checking and lubing for a range trip. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't heading for a bent op rod (no reflection on CMP).

          A few specific responses to your comments:
          Wheel bearing grease is what I plan to use - and looks like what CMP uses or something similar. Just used Wilson for this issue since it's more liquid and would work into tight areas.
          I didn't make the snap caps - bought them. Don't know how they were sized. They may have been fired in an older barrel/chamber and expanded slightly tight for my new barrel. Short of mic'ing the case diameters, they are the same as my live ammo. Won't bother with that now, of course.
          Agree with your CMP comments and have read other posts about snap cap problems in the Garand.
          Sorry if I wasn't clear on trigger pull. I pulled the trigger after the bolt closed on some of the single snap caps. Didn't pull it on others, and it made no difference.
          And Smokey, that's exactly the page I plan to use for lubing.


          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by rsu11 View Post
            Thanks guys. Overall, I'm getting that this is not a big deal, so I'll move on to disassembly, cleaning, checking and lubing for a range trip. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't heading for a bent op rod (no reflection on CMP).

            A few specific responses to your comments:
            Wheel bearing grease is what I plan to use - and looks like what CMP uses or something similar. Just used Wilson for this issue since it's more liquid and would work into tight areas.
            I didn't make the snap caps - bought them. Don't know how they were sized. They may have been fired in an older barrel/chamber and expanded slightly tight for my new barrel. Short of mic'ing the case diameters, they are the same as my live ammo. Won't bother with that now, of course.
            Agree with your CMP comments and have read other posts about snap cap problems in the Garand.
            Sorry if I wasn't clear on trigger pull. I pulled the trigger after the bolt closed on some of the single snap caps. Didn't pull it on others, and it made no difference.
            And Smokey, that's exactly the page I plan to use for lubing.

            What do you actually have? Commercial snap caps made of plastic (those are real "snap caps) or dummy rounds made from fired brass? Sounds like dummys made up by someone from fired cases. If the later, they obviously were not made correctly and you paid good money for throwaways and that's just what I would do with them before you have to beat one out of the chamber after breaking off the rim trying to extract it. You mentioned before being concerned about damaging the extractor? Well, before that were ever to happen the rim of the case will bend or break off. You'll never break a Garand extractor trying to extract a brass case no matter how you do it. Seriously, your problems haven't even begun until you break the rim off a seized in the chamber case so dispose of those "snap caps" or display them on e shelf before you create your own, more serious problem only a Gunsmith may be able to solve.

            I'll tell you what. You pay the shipping and I'll send you some properly sized and assembled dummy rounds you can play with. Just PM me. Hell, I'll send them without you paying shipping. One thing to realize is that with a Garand you can dry fire it without using "snap caps" for the rest of your life and not damage the rifle at all. The other most important detail is that you cannot possibly simulate actual rifle function by hand cycling rounds. It's impossible and useless energy expended trying.

            Also, BTW, one day you will find you may have to get a unextracted stuck round to extract. It could require some force to accomplish that. "Gently thumping the butt on the floor while applying downward pressure on the op rod" is likely not to extract such a case. In such a situation treating the rifle like a BFH and slamming it on the floor, enough so you almost cripple the hand holding the op rod handle, may be required. Even doing that, the likelihood of doing any damage to the rifle is very, very remote. It's a tough SOB and can handle most any brute force you have the ability to exert on it. Also you mentioned somehow bending the op rod while firing it. Unless you are using inappropriately hot, non Garand commercial ammo in it that's also not likely to happen even if a fired case were to stick in the chamber and the bolt never move out of battery when the round is fired.
            Last edited by lapriester; 05-03-2019, 02:29 AM.

            Comment


              #7
              rsu11,
              Listen to Larry and Bill. They're spot-on. I was gonna' tell you the same things but they beat me to it.
              The only thing I will add is to get a new op rod spring from Orion 7. No one knows the history of it and a (possibly)worn-out op rod spring is not a good thing. The spring runs about $8 plus shipping. It has a life time warranty. It's cheap insurance. It's the best $13 you'll spend on the rifle.
              Jon
              Last edited by TJT; 05-03-2019, 07:29 PM.

              Comment


                #8
                Definitely listening, just been away from my computer for a few days. Many thanks for the offer Larry, very generous of you but I think I'll get the rifle ready for the range at this point. I used fired brass dummy rounds, not plastic or aluminum. Have used fired brass dummies in my AR15 to check cycling, so I did the same for the Garand. Just always called a dummy round a snap cap. They may very well be out of size specs - I did notice some slight variations when hand loading them into the chamber. Now I'm curious, so I'll mic them and check again vs. live rounds.

                Jon, the rifle is a special from CMP, so I suspect the op rod spring is in good shape - looks and feels that way, but I'll look into getting a backup spring as you mentioned. Right now I have it apart, getting ready to put a tung oil finish on the wood. The Walnut is stained and looks good but is pretty raw grain and not protected, so doing the finish before a range trip.

                Thanks again, guys. No doubt that I've come to the right place for advice!







                Comment


                  #9
                  One month later update: tung oil treatment on the stock is finished and looks great. Did my homework on assembly/disassembly, cleaning and lubing, then took it to the range twice. First trip was 80 rounds total, with loading and going into battery being a bit stubborn at first but improved by the end of the session. Second trip was 100 rounds total with much improved loading & battery. The parts are definitely getting to know each other and tight new clips are starting to relax. Shooting PRVI Partizan 150 gr. loads for Garand and limited to 20 yards in an indoor range, resulted in all 100 rounds within a 2 1/4" hole off a front benchrest. Very happy with that as I get to know the sights.

                  Probably a couple more indoor trips to get things working smoothly, then to an outdoor 100 yard+ range. To say I'm having a good time with this rifle is an understatement for sure. Just wanted to say thanks again for your help getting a newbie started!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Keep cycling it by hand and the finish will smooth out as it burnishs in. If your going too shoot off a rest make sure its under the main stock close too the trigger groups floor plate.

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