- April 12, 2016 at 8:51 pm #26974
I received a question asking; “what’s the best scope mount for the M1 Carbine”.
My experience with the M1 Carbine goes back to ’62 or ’63 when my uncle showed up at our ranch with one. He had acquired it surplus and it was in new condition. He also had an ammo can full of .30 Carbine ball ammo. At the same time he had a new M70 in .264 Win Mag which was supposed to be the greatest thing since peanut butter at the time. While he was enamored with the M70 I was relegated to”figure that little rifle out and see if it shoots ok”…..well it didn’t take me long to figure it out and to start shooting it as I had already read Col. Georges excellent book on his experiences with the M1 Carbine in the Pacific during WWII, especially with his time on Guadalcanal and with Merrill’s Marauders. In short order I I was bouncing tin cans (they were real tin cans back then) across the pasture with regularity. I shot up about half that can of ammo and fell in love with the little carbine right then. A few short years later I found myself in the SE Asian war games with a very nice M2 Carbine. Like Col George I found it to do the job nicely if you did your job. I’ve not been without an M1 Carbine since.
Back in the late ’60s and early ’70s there were numerous articles in gun magazines on “sporterizing” the M1 Carbine. I must have tried just about everything that was done with several M1 Carbines. I even bought 5 bare receivers and built various carbines in different configurations in .30 Carbine, 22 Johnson and 357 magnum. I was constantly building, testing trading and buying M1 carbines. I’ve shot a lot of surplus 30 Carbine, reloads with jacketed bullets and thousands of cast bullets through many different M1/M2 Carbines. I’ve found the 30 Carbine cartridge to be an excellent cartridge if one understands it’s not a 30-06. I’ve killed a gob of varmints with the M1 Carbine and it was/is my favorite rifle to have on my lap when calling coyotes in dense high sage brush cover. I’ve also killed 7 deer with it.
I always loved shooting iron sighted rifles, especially the ones with quality aperture rear sights and a post front sight. Back when I was converting M1 Carbines and “accurizing” them (yes they can be made to shoot very accurately indeed!) I did scope several of them. I tried several different mounts that put a scope over the top of the receiver. These were the Williams side mount, the Beuller side mount and the S&K mount that replaces the rear sight. All worked fairly well but case ejection (stove piping) was a common problem and I never had one that would give 100% reliable ejection. I even adapted used the blank firing gas deflector when possible which provided the most reliable ejection. Another problem was with the scopes themselves. They were made back then to take recoil in one direction and many would rattle loose (the crosshairs would literally fall out and lens would come loose. The Carbines action is somewhat violent and gives vibrations and “recoil” in both directions. The little M1 Carbines would rattle scopes into uselessness similar to what piston air rifles will do to non air rifle rated scopes, even the best of them. Quite frankly none of the receiver mount scope set ups proved reliable. I still have a rear sight replacement base but quit using it because, besides the ejection/stove piping problems, it puts the scope too far back and to high for any real quick use of the little carbine.
At about the age of 42 my eyes started going south and it became difficult to see the front sight clearly. Oh, I could put additional lens in front of my glasses to see the front sight clearly but any target was soon lost in the blur. Sadly my little M1 Carbines languished in the back of the gun safe for several years. I the got a Springfield Armory Scout scope base for my M1A (my eyes were plaguing me with long sight radii also) and I wanted a Scout scope on it. That mount clamped onto the barrel, was rock solid and allowed for a quality scout or handgun scope to be used. Fortunately many scope makers have improved the internals of their scopes so they hold up. Then I was working the SASS world championship a few years back and stopped at a LGS not far from Ben Avery Range in Phoenix. They had several different “scout” mounts similar to the SA mount but the replaced the hand guard also. They were available for the M1 carbine, the Mini-14, the M1 rifle and the M1A rifle. I purchased one for my M1 Carbine right then and there. When I got home I quickly mounted the base on the rifle following the very well written instructions. In short order I had a Bushnell red dot sight mounted on it and found the little M1 Carbine came to the shoulder with the sight to the eye very quickly.
Took it to the range and zeroed it and was blissfully shooting my M1 Carbine again! Absolutely no more ejection/stove pipe problems and I could even use my brass catcher with it! I was having a great time until the Bushnell sight rattled loose…..I’d fire a couple shots and the dot would go out……….That sucked! So I took a 2X Burris handgun scope off one of my Contender barrels and mounted it with as low a set of rings as possible. The ocular lens housing is right over the front receiver ring and as low as possible. This puts the eye instantly in line with the field of view when the carbine is quickly shouldered. So far I have several hundred rounds through my M1 Carbine with this setup and the base nor the Burris scope haven’t faltered at all. It makes me very happy to be shooting my M1 Carbine again. I have 2 M1 Carbines and will be getting a second one for my other carbine. I also will get a base for my M1A as I’ve put the SA base on my FR8 Scout rifle. A friend of mine shoots 3 gun competition and uses a Mini-14 with this base on it also with complete satisfaction. While I shoot my M1 Carbine to 300 yards with excellent accuracy using the 2X scope I recommend the Burris 2×7 Scout scope for longer range capable rifles. I have one on my FR8 Scout and it’s the proverbial “cat’s meow”.
Anyways, back to answering the question; I consider the Amega Scout base to be the absolutely no holds barred best scope base for the M1 Carbine…….. check the mounts out at http://www.amegamounts.com. Yes they are a little spendy but no modification to the M1 Carbine is required and best of all; they work! If you get one take some time and find a set of rings that puts the scope as low as possible. Also don’t skimp on the scope. A cheap NecStar that hold up on a bolt action milsurp probably will rattle loose in no time on the little M1 Carbine. I’ve still got several such scopes on a shelf in my shop………
- April 12, 2016 at 8:54 pm #26975
- April 12, 2016 at 8:58 pm #26976
- April 12, 2016 at 10:11 pm #26977chutesnreloadsParticipant
- Posts: 4
- Comments: 161
- Overall: 165
Nice solution to a problem most us will have if we don’t already.Getting older ain’t quite as bad if you get wiser too.
- April 13, 2016 at 3:31 am #26982uber7mmParticipant
- Posts: 17
- Comments: 288
- Overall: 305
Smart looking rifle, Larry. I like the custom stock and muzzle brake.
- April 13, 2016 at 6:00 am #26986oldblinddogParticipant
- Posts: 4
- Comments: 110
- Overall: 114
- April 13, 2016 at 9:28 am #26990DaveInGAParticipant
- Posts: 6
- Comments: 44
- Overall: 50
Good looking setup. Does that mount clamp to the barrel? I have a similar setup on mine, different company and it clamps to the barrel. It has a “fat” stock on it and there was lots of room in the barrel channel for the clamps. Real fast setup with a red dot. I love it, but my wife shot it and it has since disappeared into her mini-van, not to be seen again except at range time.:)
- April 13, 2016 at 2:03 pm #26991
Yes it clamps onto the barrel very solidly. My wife also has claimed “dibs” on the M1 Carbine. She shoots it more than I do and only lets me clean it and load for and of course store it “for her” in the gun safe…………
- April 13, 2016 at 2:15 pm #26992Rattlesnake CharlieParticipant
- Posts: 152
- Comments: 679
- Overall: 831
Thanks for the advice on a scope mount for the M1 Carbine Larry.
I just placed my order for a scope mount, 2 – 8x scope, and rings from Amega Mounts.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.