CMP Forums

CMP Forums (
-   M1A/M14 (
-   -   M1A/M14 Receivers (

Smal 08-16-2018 08:36 PM

M1A/M14 Receivers
Ok With Bula now having their receivers, Smith Enterprises, LRB,7.62mm, Fulton, JRA, Gun Works of Lower Alabama, Polytec, Springfield Armory Genesco Ill, ok now who did I forget any other makers?

Now out of all of these who makes the best receiver for the money, Not who makes the absolute best receiver or worst one but Dollar for the Dollar price wise who gives you the best working receiver for the dollar if I wanted to get a good reliable long lasting quality receiver for the least amount of money of all these makers

Roadkingtrax 08-16-2018 08:42 PM

From someone that has built more than the rest of us combined. :)


Originally Posted by Ted Brown (Post 4166128)
I donít wish to go into the subject of how good or bad any companies M14 receivers are. A good deal has been said about the many problems some builders have had and the issues they encountered. The problem is that the problems are common to all commercial receivers to some extent. Manufacturing a commercial receiver is mostly about making money. Companies strive to produce profitable products and in the case of the M14 to a very limited market. Yes, I know Springfield Inc. has produced over 400,000 receivers. Most other companies have produced anywhere from 230 to 4,000 or so, usually on the lower side. Some even less.

Then there is the government. M14 rifle production for the military was somewhere in the 1.5 million range. A drop in the bucket compared to the Garand and M1 Carbine. I donít recall ever having a serious issue working on Government receivers. Of course they made so many and I only had access to a few. No one knows how many government M14 receivers were rejected and trashed during manufacturing. Those that were accepted had to be about perfect ó they had all those precision gages to check every detail with. Even so we often found minor variations in tolerances in any given number of receivers, but they almost never were found unacceptable.

Issues with commercial receivers are common as I said. Barrel thread timing is off, bolts wonít rotate, trigger housings donít lock in place, head space is wrong, clip guides are too tight (and break the dove tail if forced), bolt lock pin bosses break, receiver bridge firing pin cam area cut wrong, magazine well angle off, magazine well too tight for magazine fit, core hardness too brittle (or too soft), case hardness too soft (or too hard), bolt roller contacts receiver rail (resulting in broken bolt roller), uneven contact between bolt lugs and recoil shoulders of receiver, rails too wide (or too narrow), step in flying rail not machined to spec, rear sight valley too narrow, rear sight ear holes misaligned. I know there is more. Iíve seen connector holes deformed, uneven bottom surfaces and asymmetrical heals to mention a few more. I could go on.

Iím sure some of you have even more issues to site. The point is that building a rifle always involves a certain amount of hand fitting. That is why we have gunsmiths and armorers. Those of us who do this for a living are familiar with the issues and know how to deal with them. We know that there is no such thing as a perfect commercial M14 receiver (so far). Some companies really do try to make their receivers as close to perfect as possible, but compared to what? Mil-spec? Mil-spec is a standard for consistency. The problem with trying to met mil-spec in producing commercial receivers is that there is no such thing. Let me repeat thatÖ there is no such thing. Commercial M14 receivers are not the same thing as government M14 receivers. The processes used to make them are not the same. The technology used is not the same and in some cases the materials are not the same. Modern machining techniques have no resemblance to that used when the government was contracting the manufacturing of the M14 rifle.

So, the best we can do is come close. That coupled with limited production numbers, the need to make a profit, and the needs of the end users dictate that what you see is all you will get. I do believe that some companies, given enough time, will make a superior product. GWLA was a good example of that. They got off to an exemplary start, but found they couldnít make a profit with their limited production. LRB Arms is one company that has done an excellent job producing a consistently better product. I know them personally and I know they sacrificed a great deal to get where they are today. Some companies have settled for mediocrity, making money, but turning out only fairly good products. We are lucky today to have the few remaining companies producing M14 rifles doing good work and making good products. Occasionally some have issues as said, but little that cannot be dealt with.

In the 40 years Iíve been working on the M14, Iíve worked with nearly every receiver made. None are perfect, but they are getting closerÖ

Smal 08-16-2018 09:33 PM


Originally Posted by Roadkingtrax (Post 1745569)

From someone that has built more than the rest of us combined. :)

Coming from Ted Brown that says a mouth full also about what Im thinking also I'm wondering who puts out the best receiver for the money is a better way of putting what I'm trying to say,I know LRB and GWLA are great receivers but are there just as good ones for less money is Bula for instance as good as those two but a cheaper made thus you get more quality for your money? There also Hammer forged right why would GWLA or LRB be a better receiver for the money than say a Bula are the specs better on the LRB and the GWLA I'm actually trying to make up my mind which to buy also.I want a good quality receiver but whats the difference,I know some are hammer forged and some are cast etc and I'm wanting a Hammer forged but why would I want a LRB or a GWLA over a Bula or vice versa and why is Bula so much cheaper?

Gewehr43 08-16-2018 09:57 PM

You're asking a question that had led to more hate and discontent with the
M1A crowd.............not to mention the fact it has been beaten to death already a few times now.

Chevy or Ford, take your pick.

Lastly I thought GWLA was out of business.............

Smal 08-17-2018 01:30 AM


Originally Posted by Gewehr43 (Post 1745586)
You're asking a question that had led to more hate and discontent with the
M1A crowd.............not to mention the fact it has been beaten to death already a few times now.

Chevy or Ford, take your pick.

Lastly I thought GWLA was out of business.............

There is new players in the field now and I'm not looking to start some squabble just some information,If people want to squabble fight and backstab over it they can leave there comments out I'm looking for good honest solid information, not this petty bickering that's been going on between a few on here maybe since you know so much about it your one of the pot stirrers? as I asked a question and I dont need you dragging in some old dirt thats been slung around that has nothing to do with me,And if it had been beaten to death id not been asking the question id already know the answer,I do not partake in the petty battles that go on over whos is best or not I just want to know for my own self which is the best to buy with my amount of funds that is best for me and I could give a rats azz about any old sewage your trying to drag in to this conversation,Now if you have a opinion on which is better and why tell me and ill make my own decision based on people here who are kind enough to guide me in the right direction for the amount of funds Id like to spend, I want to know what makes one better than the other and why some cost more than others before I make a decision on which I want to buy and build my rifle on I dont want to go out and act like a sheep like so many do on here just because so and so says buy bula its the best blah blah blah and A rush of people jump on the band wagon to buy them and dont know crap about them same as the others,I just used Bula as a example because there new,What I want is a honest opnion from people who have enough expertise to offer up a good honest opnion,Not a bunch of back biteing garbage your talking about you can just pack that crap up and take it back where ever rock you dragged it out from under and if anyone has any good opnions and you do not want to post them on here because of BS like this feel free to Private message me

Renisin 08-17-2018 02:10 AM

They're all good receivers, you decide what you can afford. The information is out there just do your home work.

SEI, GWLA are no longer producing receivers, these will be more difficult to get and costly.

Your best bet right now would be LRB, Bula, Fulton receivers.


nf1e 08-17-2018 05:11 AM

Norinco, Mauntz and Federal ord can be added to your initial list. There are a few others but the names escape me at the moment.
There are only two currently produced receivers available to the general public one would be a Fulton cast and the other Bula Defense Systems which is forged. Ted Brown has some GWLA receivers that were the last of their production for sale . Just got one myself so I would have it for the herd.
Any of the rest you mentioned can be found if you are patient and or have deep pockets.
I have built on most of your list over the last 50+ years and, for what can be had today, Bula would be the most cost effective in my opinion. I have over 2 dozen of there products in my collection along with another 2 dozen of other manufactures that I have added over the years.
All currently made receivers are as close to USGI spec as is allowed but any can vary within a batch slightly.

TLB 08-17-2018 08:59 AM

They all have their proponents and naysayers. They are tough to manufacture and many have their foibles. Almost all can be worked around, especially by a skilled 'smith. I have or have owned Armscorp, Bula, Polytech and SA Inc and would likely buy any again. All but the Polytech and one Bula started as a bare receiver.

ZvenoMan 08-17-2018 12:39 PM

You may consider thisM
There is plenty of info but you should seek it FIRST and then as specific questions. This forum and the M14 forum are obvious choices.
It really is as simple as Ford and Chevy. Note that not once in this thread has anyone said to avoid xxxxx brand.
Most threads discussing this will also suggest 2 things:
1. These are not ARs. Buying parts and assembling on the kithchen table will not go well. Many (most) require some hand fitting.
2. The builder is as, if not more important than the receiver brand.

If you simply want someone to tell you what to buy based on your post above then you may be disappointed.


nf1e 08-17-2018 03:49 PM

For someone that would like to do the work themselves, Fulton seems to be the easiest to do , at least the 2 I have were. CMP kits made rifles out of them as I observed. Magic.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:10 AM.