M1 Carbine for SHTF

M1 Carbine shooting .30 Carbine

M1 Carbine

M1 Carbine with bayonet and magazines

The M1 Carbine has been around since 1942.  It was intended for Army personnel who didn’t need the full sized M1 Garand but wanted something with more power than the 1911-A1.  The M1 Carbine was issued to American soldiers and saw action in WWll, Korea, Vietnam and too many other hot spots to mention.  With such a long service life, you can be assured the carbine is plenty durable.  If it meets the military’s rugged standards, it will meet yours too.

Some people may think the the M1 Carbine is just a smaller version of the Garand.  Not so.  They both shoot a .30 caliber bullet, but they are dimensionally very different.  The carbine round is 7.62mm x 33mm and fires a 110 grain bullet.  The Garand shoots a .30-06 round that is 7.62mm x 63mm.  They fire very different rounds and the M1 Carbine and the M1 Garand share no common parts.

What makes the M1 Carbine such a great little gun is that it is light and shoots a compact load.  The carbine itself is about 35.5″ and weighs just over 5 pounds.  The .30 carbine round propels a 110 grain bullet at 1990 fps.  This produces about 967 ft-lbs of power.  This is significantly more power than a .357 magnum revolver.

The M1 Carbine originally came with 15 round magazines.  These magazines could be carried in pouches on a pistol belt or mounted to the gun itself.  Later, 30 round magazines became available.  A fully loaded 30 round magazine still only weighs about one pound.  High firepower with just a little weight.  Interestingly, the 30 round magazine is where the expression ‘banana clip’ comes from.  The magazines are about the size of bananas and GIs were used to loading the Garand rifle by using en bloc clips.


10 magazines (150 rounds) easily carried on a pistol belt

Most retired military M1 Carbines have been arsenal overhauled or upgraded from their original configuration to now possess bayonet lugs and adjustable sights.  The carbine pictured above contains these later features.  If things go really bad, its nice to have a bayonet on the end of your rifle to keep the bad guys from getting too close.

Today’s modern .30 carbine ammo is much better than GI ball ammo.  Remington, Winchester and Federal all make a nice soft point bullet with an exposed lead nose loaded in .30 carbine.  These make a nice load for hunting small game.

Its light weight, moderately powerful round and combat proven durability make the M1 Carbine a handy little rifle to have when things go bad.  It can also be used as an effective hunting rifle if it is all you have.


About krasinsk1 Big John Tutorials

I've been an active shooter, reloader and gunsmith for 30+ years. I hold a Bachelor's degree from Montana State University and a Master's degree from the University of Oregon. I enjoy studying, collecting and shooting just about every type and kind of firearm.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to M1 Carbine for SHTF

  1. gunsafetypro says:

    If the M1 Carbine is all you have, then go for it with Soft Points but I think there are better rifles and pistol caliber carbines out there that accomplish the mission more effectively.

  2. bigjohnk99 says:

    I agree. Soft points would be the best option for ammo. If it was my only gun, I’d make due. The carbine is light, durable and reliable, but it is 70 years old. Luckily, I do have other options.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s