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  #1  
Old 02-16-2021, 09:32 AM
gwozdz gwozdz is offline
 
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Default Did HRA use Springfield stocks in production of their M1 Garands

I believe I read that at some point HRA did use some Springfield Armory stocks in the production of their M1 Garand rifles, but now, after hours of searching I cannot find that reference. Can anyone shed some light on this? Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 02-16-2021, 10:15 AM
ihcfan55 ihcfan55 is online now
 
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In all of my research, I have never found evidence of HRA using Springfield Armory stocks. However, there are some HRA stocks in the 4.73M range that have seriffed proofs, possibly due to a Springfield Armory P proof stamp making its way into the HRA proofing process.
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  #3  
Old 02-20-2021, 06:44 AM
TFLeader TFLeader is offline
 
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Default SA wood

See:https://www.americanrifleman.org/art...-garand-rifles

Although H&R did not receive its M1 production contract until almost a year after the International Harvester contract was granted, H&R was able to capitalize on its armsmaking experience, beginning delivery of M1 rifles at about the same time as IHC. Even so, H&R experienced its share of difficulties in getting M1 production underway. For example, on very early rifles, the company had to acquire some miscellaneous parts, such as operating rods, bolts and hammers, from Springfield. Otherwise, Harrington & Richardson M1 rifles primarily utilized “HRA”-marked parts, including barrels. H&R stocks had a noticeably different contour (especially behind the receiver) as compared to Springfield Armory and International Harvester stocks of the same vintage. Most of the H&R stocks were stamped with a 3/8" Defense Acceptance Stamp, although there were some exceptions, mainly on later rifles.

While not specifically mentioning stocks, I would not be surprised if the Armory shipped stocks from its facility during the start up, given the Korean War effort at time.
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  #4  
Old 02-23-2021, 01:11 PM
ihcfan55 ihcfan55 is online now
 
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Default SA wood on HRA rifles?

Well, I would be surprised if there were Springfield stocks on HRA rifles.

Why?

The difficulty experienced by HRA and IHC in getting started in M1 production was the fault of the government.

Let that sink in. The fault of the government.

IHC's supposedly "shoddy" manufacture methods were not the reason the production was slow, as some sources have stated.

And HRA's prior gun manufacturing experience was not in play here.

The problem was that the government was to provide the prime contractors (IHC and HRA) the machines needed to mill the parts for the rifle.

But, "there was a war on" and the promised milling machines were sent to other suppliers to work on higher priority items, like jets and tanks.

IHC repeatedly begged for the machines, but IHC did not get its milling machines until early 1953, and HRA probably got theirs in the same timeframe.

So, the reason IHC and HRA were supplied parts by SA was that Ordnance wanted the first 500 rifles from each contractor delivered in Fiscal Year 1953 as "Educational Contract" rifles, so the prices of the rifles could be evaluated. That is why SA parts were sent to IHC in the fall of 1952 - and SA parts sent to HRA in the spring of 1953.

There was never a problem with delivery of rifle stocks, as Overton delivered a huge quantity of 1952-dated stocks to IHC, and HRA had their own gun stocking shop.
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MSGT (Retired) Gary Wayne Bradford, Alabama Air National Guard
NCOIC Air Intelligence, 117th Intelligence Squadron, Birmingham, AL (January 1990 - August 2012)
Counterdrug Operations: Alabama National Guard Counterdrug Program, 1992-2007.
U-2 and Predator Operations: Deliberate Force; Joint Endeavor; Northern Watch; Southern Watch; Noble Eagle; Enduring Freedom; Iraqi Freedom.

Last edited by ihcfan55; 02-23-2021 at 06:30 PM.
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  #5  
Old 02-23-2021, 01:44 PM
Blurry Blurry is offline
 
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So, what would HRA stock characteristics be? I’ve seen some “Early HRA” stocks sold recently that had Ordinance Wheel stamps and serif P firing proofs... I hear of different styles cannons, stock contours, 3/8” DAS with serif or non-serif P and etc. Many questions still.
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  #6  
Old 02-23-2021, 03:09 PM
ihcfan55 ihcfan55 is online now
 
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Default Questions answered.

I am doing research on this now.

Everyone wants postwar rifle production to be "cut and dried," but from my research on postwar rifles, it is anything but.

One of the problems, as you point out, is that most all of these Ordnance Wheel only stocks have been sold as "early HRA stocks" - most likely because early HRA stocks are perceived as rarer, and thus would bring more money in the sale.

The fact that the stocks were sold as "early HRA stocks" does not prove they were really, in fact, true early HRA stocks, does it?

In my experience, a true HRA Ordnance wheel stock will have the standard HRA sans serif (without serifs) P proof on it. And it has the standard HRA "back porch" on it as well.

However, the "Ordnance Wheel only" stocks (bearing the seriffed P proof) are found on Springfield Armory rifles which were assembled in the late summer of 1953.

When Springfield Armory Commander Colonel Guion retired in August 1953, the SA/JLG proof stamps (which represented his initials as the Armory commander) were scrapped, and Springfield then applied the Ordnance Wheel only as an acceptance stamp.

In normal times, a new commander would have his initials put on a new acceptance stamp, but directives called for the new Defense Acceptance Stamp, or DAS, to be applied instead.

So, the "Ordnance Wheel only" stamp at Springfield Armory was in use for only a very short time, most likely in the August/September timeframe, when it was replaced by the DAS.

And, the Ordnance Wheel only stamp at HRA was also used for a very short time as well. Duff reports that HRA had only delivered 500 rifles by June 30, 1953, so the HRA Ordnance wheel only stock would have been found on those 500, and possibly a few thousand more 4.66M rifles delivered in the summer of 1953.

The HRA Ordnance Wheel was replaced by the 3/8" DAS stamp about the same time SA started using the DAS stamp (circa September 1953), and was used until the approximate HRA serial number range of 5.61M. At that time the HRA 3/8" stamp was replaced by the 1/2" stamp, and there is some overlap of the two stamps.

Note: There is also some overlap of the Ordnance Wheel only stock and the 3/8" DAS, because the rifles were not, repeat not, built in consecutive serial number order. (None of the postwar rifles were built in consecutive serial number order.)

It is worth noting that there are some original HRA rifles bearing the 3/8" DAS and the seriffed P proof in the 4.73M range. No explanation has surfaced yet, but it could be that Springfield Armory sent some additional inspectors at that time to help inspect rifles, as production had ramped up at HRA, and they may have simply brought some SA seriffed proof stamps with them.

If anyone has any hard data to add to this discussion, I would welcome the information.
__________________
MSGT (Retired) Gary Wayne Bradford, Alabama Air National Guard
NCOIC Air Intelligence, 117th Intelligence Squadron, Birmingham, AL (January 1990 - August 2012)
Counterdrug Operations: Alabama National Guard Counterdrug Program, 1992-2007.
U-2 and Predator Operations: Deliberate Force; Joint Endeavor; Northern Watch; Southern Watch; Noble Eagle; Enduring Freedom; Iraqi Freedom.

Last edited by ihcfan55; 02-23-2021 at 03:58 PM.
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  #7  
Old 02-23-2021, 05:30 PM
Blurry Blurry is offline
 
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Thank you for sharing that info. And for spending the time to gather it. I became curious about the OW stocks with serif-P being possibly HRA because of some of the ones I have seen advertised and sold as such. I had always thought that the HRA OW stocks would ONLY be non-serif P. I have also been curious as to whether there is a difference between the cannons of the SA/OW and the HRA/OW stamps. I know that the subject has been discussed on this forum but I haven’t chased down all of the past posts.
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  #8  
Old 02-24-2021, 10:48 AM
Rick B Rick B is offline
 
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I have found the HRA cannons which differ from both IHC and Springfield's on a few Springfield stocks. As a collector I am not going to read into the reasons why I think they did or didn't. I was not there at the time but again I have seen the HRA cannons on a few Springfield stocks. Rick B
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  #9  
Old 02-24-2021, 01:35 PM
ihcfan55 ihcfan55 is online now
 
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Default Crossed cannons

Interesting. I am sure you have seen a lot of stocks, so I am glad you chimed in.

What kind of P proof did these Springfield stocks (with the crossed cannons from HRA) have on them? Seriffed or no serif?

Or was the serif P the reason you tagged them Springfield stocks?

One thing that muddies the water on this is that we know that the final acceptance stamps were used by the Ordnance inspectors, and more-than-likely were controlled items, issued on a hand receipt.

We do know the area where the accepted rifles were stored prior to shipment at IHC was in a chain-link area secured by a lock, so it stands to reason the acceptance stamps would be a controlled item.

So, an Ordnance inspector who was transferred, or sent to do a TDY job, might carry his final acceptance stamp with him. That is just conjecture - I really do not know for sure.

Can anyone else chime in on this?
__________________
MSGT (Retired) Gary Wayne Bradford, Alabama Air National Guard
NCOIC Air Intelligence, 117th Intelligence Squadron, Birmingham, AL (January 1990 - August 2012)
Counterdrug Operations: Alabama National Guard Counterdrug Program, 1992-2007.
U-2 and Predator Operations: Deliberate Force; Joint Endeavor; Northern Watch; Southern Watch; Noble Eagle; Enduring Freedom; Iraqi Freedom.
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  #10  
Old 02-24-2021, 02:18 PM
Rick B Rick B is offline
 
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They were Serriffed just like the large back porched ones I have seen. Reason I know they were Springfield made stocks was small back porch and one inspection mark on the butt end. Rick B
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