A lot of new articles are being written about one of my personal favorite guns of all time, the M1 Carbine. Don’t know why that is, but it is along with it’s big brother the M1 Garand an iconic firearm.
In the most recent article to cross my monitor S.W.A.T. Magazine puts the M1 Carbine up against an AR15. The results of that head to head comparison may surprise a few of you, but It didn’t me. Does it make me want to dump an AR and go buy an M1 Carbine? No, but at the same time the Carbine does have a few things going for it.
- Low sight line. If you don’t compensate for the AR15s sight offset you might either put a round into a barrier or worse something you didn’t want to shoot.
- Appearance. Some people (especially those who might end up on a jury) get the vapors when they see the sharp lines, black metal and plastic of an AR15, not so with the smooth flowing lines and walnut stock of the M1 Carbine.
- Low(er) muzzle blast. If you have to fire indoors the carbine’s lower pressure round won’t generate nearly the blast of the 5.56X45.
Reasons I wouldn’t go for an M1 Carbine
- Cost. Compared to a Ar15 you’ll be paying just as much if not more for an M1. There are new ones out there but with the exception of Fulton Armory, I’m not sure how reliable they would be. Gone are the days you could get a Rock-Ola manufactured M1 Carbine for half the price of an AR15.
- Reliability. Magazines have always been an issue for the Carbine. The 30 round ones are iffy at best and 15 round magazines are a little better especially if you can get original issue one. Age and wear of parts is another area of concern.
- Ammunition. Very few manufacturers make defensive ammunition for the Carbine.
You can if you choose wisely put a light and red dot on an M1 so that isn’t a consideration. Personally I’d consider a wood stocked Mini-14 for home defense over an M1 carbine, Mianly for logistics reasons. However, I would definitely keep the M1 around for range trips. They’re fun to shoot and new shooters take to it easily. Especially those who are easily spooked by muzzle blast.