Monday, June 14, 2021

The M1 Garand's Mysterious 7th Round Stoppage

 The M1 Garand ran great in testing, but as soon as Springfield began to crank out production-line guns a mysterious problem appeared. If the top round in the clip was on the right-hand side, the 7th round in the clip would often run askew and malfunction. Where did this very odd problem come from, and why the connection to how the clip was loaded?

In a classic example of "guns are hard" going from prototypes to production line tooling, Springfield had to figure out the problem while the War Department was busy sending hundreds of problem rifles to Camp Perry for public demonstration...

Reference source for this video is Julian Hatcher's "Book of the Garand":

VIDEO HERE  (11:30 minutes)


  1. I Learned to shoot the M1 from men who used it to fight for their lives. They were very particular about loading clips, first round always on the same side. Odd for a stoppage problem that was cured before any real mass production began. Regardless, I've always loaded my clips their way...

  2. This is the first time I've been disappointed by one of Ian's videos. He did a good job of showing why the stoppages occurred, but not how. I would have liked to see an actual seventh round stoppage in slow motion.

    Exactly what changed when the seventh round advanced to the top of the clip? Why didn't it happen on the fifth round, etc?

    1. It was only seen in very early production items; all were corrected with a weld and re-machine of the receiver. Did you watch the video? The magazine follower reached the level of the incorrect machining as the seventh round reached the top of the magazine causing the stoppage. The problem was caused when the barrel aperture was drilled into the front of the receiver, The drill was allowed to cut too deeply into the receiver, cutting away the top of the right-hand magazine follower guide rib. The error was not obvious and not caught during inspection steps. The stoppage only happened when the odd-numbered rounds in the clip were loaded on the right side of the clip.


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