Folks laughed at me when I told them a good choice for SHTF guns were older guns like the M1 Garand and M1 Carbine. Everyone said ‘get and AR.’ The M1 Garand was first adopted by the U.S. military in 1936. People thought I was crazy for even suggesting such an old weapon. Well, there seems to be a shortage of ammo these days. Very few people are finding ammo for their ARs. All the .223 and 5.56mm seem to have disappeared. Maybe I wasn’t so crazy.
I stocked up on surplus .30-06 and .30 carbine a while back, but today I can go to Cabela’s and buy both calibers. In fact, they have more ammo there than I can afford. However, they have no .223 at all (no 9mm either). Go into almost any store that sells ammunition and you can almost always find a box or two of .30-06.
Ammunition availability aside, the Garand would still be a great choice for a long gun. First of all, the Garand rifle doesn’t look threatening. Its just wood and steel. Its not one of those ‘ugly’ black guns so many people fear and are trying to ban.
Second, it only holds 8 rounds. If high capacity magazines are an issue, the Garand should be immune to any magazine bans.
Third, the .30-06 round has tremendous power and can be found in AP (armor piercing), match, ball and tracer. The M1 Garand with its .30-06 rounds can turn cover into concealment unless your target is in a tank.
Forth, the reliability of the M1 can not be denied. It fought in WWII and Korea and was still in use right up until the Vietnam War. The rifle proved itself in combat in the desert, jungle and snow.
Fifth, the en-bloc clip. When you’ve fired your 8 rounds, you don’t have to fumble with removing an empty magazine. The clip ejects all by itself and the action locks open ready for a fresh clip to be inserted. Speedy reloads.
Lastly, if you need to knock a door in or butt stroke a bad guy, there’s that nice solid hard walnut stock and a steel butt plate. Try busting a door down with a plastic rifle.
I’m not saying the M1 Garand is better than an AR, I’m just saying when the SHTF you’ll be doing pretty well if you have that big heavy rifle close by.
With a good supply of loaded en-bloc clips, the M1 Garand stands ready.
A couple of ALICE ammo pouches will carry almost twice as many rounds as soldiers carried into battle in WWII. Instead of three M-16 magazines I carry 8 loaded clips in each pouch. Add a pistol belt and suspenders and you can comfortably carry all that ammo.
The M1 Carbine can also be a great choice for a gun to add to your collection. I’ll save the M1 Carbine for another post.
If you are a prepper, you might want to have a gun like the M1 Garand in your arsenal. Just maybe there is some validity in having a gun you can find ammo for.