January 2010

Carbines, the Judge, No Recall

Collectors of the M-1 obviously like their carbines. Readers offer corrections on flat-top bolt/round bolt issue; the Taurus Judge gets more love from its owners; slapping a Mosquito rumor.

Re: "Four M1 Carbines: CMP, Fulton, And

Auto-Ordnance Compete," December 2009

I just got my December issue of GT and had to sit down and read it. I agree with your findings, especially about the CMP-2 Inland. I got mine about a year ago through CMP, and it’s a winner. The only thing I’d suggest is that when you buy a used M-1 Carbine from anyone, go immediately to Numrich Gunparts Corp. and order a new gas piston, castle nut and wrench. You’d be surprised at the noticeable difference in performance this small change makes. I was told by an old armorer years ago that the gas piston is made of a softer alloy than the gas cylinder, so that it wears first and the cylinder lasts longer. As these weapons are used, over time the gas piston wears and develops blow by. A new gas piston and

castle nut improves performance noticeably.

Thanks for an excellent and honest magazine.

—Bob Duke

Tijeras, New Mexico

Comments on the U.S. Carbine Caliber .30 M-1 article:

The "shotgun" crossbolt safety was changed to the lever type on the carbine because it often led to the shooter releasing the weapon’s magazine when releasing the safety, because of the close proximity of the safety to the magazine release. It is interesting to note that the two types of safeties are interchangeable without any modification.

The carbine started with a flat top bolt, to reduce weight. When the Carbine Cal. .30 M-2 (full automatic capability) was fielded, it was found that the flat-top bolt tended to become unstable during full automatic fire, and disengaged from the operating slide. The round bolt solved the problem.

I suspect you intended to write, "... with the outgoing case caught by the slide," instead of "the outgoing round" on page 8.

In Vietnam in 1964, I carried a Winchester M-1 Carbine, in lieu of a jam-prone Colt AR-15. The M-1 Carbine never failed. It resides in my gun safe today.

—Thomas O. Humphus, Major, USA, Retired

Columbus, Georgia

I enjoyed your review of the M1 carbines. I have purchased several from the CMP and would have been delighted to get them with wood in the condition of your test guns. Out of the three I own (Inland, Underwood, and Winchester), the Inland is the most accurate, producing MOA groups at 100 yards. However, I do believe the early bolts were flat, not round as your article states. Keep up the fine work.

—Paul Haley


I enjoyed the article and can offer a bit of advice on keeping the bolt open when cleaning. Just use a #4 rubber band attached to the bolt and anchored to the butt stock. There is enough tension to hold the bolt open when using the cleaning rod.

—Ron Shultz

Re "Firing Line," December 2009

This note is in response to the letter by Robin O’Brien. The problem Mr. O’Brien had with his Taurus Judge is a case of operator error—I know, because I had the same experience.

I am the owner of a Taurus Judge with a 3.25-inch cylinder. I wanted a Judge from the first day I saw

them advertised and had one heck of a time getting one. I did the same thing as Mr. O’Brien did, loading it with 45 LC and 410-bore shotshells, 3-inch magnums.

The 45 LC rounds cycled just fine. The first 410 magnum round went off fine—exciting, actually. However, after firing the first magnum round, the cylinder would not rotate and the trigger could not be pulled. Jammed.

After much effort to force the cylinder into an open/safe position for loading/unloading, I saw the problem. The end of the plastic shell case had forced itself out between the end of the cylinder and the cylinder end of the barrel, thus creating the jam and the rotation/cycling failure.

Taurus advertises the weapon as capable of shooting 410-bore shotshells, which it does—and quite well, if I may say so. The problem lies in the length of the cylinder. Taurus makes a Judge with a 3-inch cylinder and a 3.25-inch cylinder. The 3-inch cylinder handles the 2.5-inch shotshell without any problem, but will jam every time if the shooter tries to use the 3-inch shotshell. On the other hand, the Judge with the 3.25-inch cylinder will accommodate both the 2.5-inch and the 3-inch magnum rounds. The literature that comes with the revolver is generic and does not warn of this problem. Many gun dealers are also unaware of this situation.

I sold the Taurus with the 3-inch cylinder and bought the one with the 3.25-inch cylinder. I stopped using 45 LC and now use only 3-inch rounds with 00 buckshot—works great, and I and several friends have a great time shooting this handgun with 2.5- and 3-inch rounds.

If you want a good home-defense handgun, there is nothing wrong with the quality of the Taurus. The Judge sits next to my bed at night.

—Don Coons

Virginia Beach, Virginia

In the December 2009 issue, Robin O’Brien commented on his experience with the Taurus Judge. His statement indicated that he had loaded the revolver with 45-caliber cartridges, and the revolver locked up the cylinder when fired. I would be willing to bet that he had loaded the revolver with +P loads. Yes, it will jam—the owner’s book indicates not to use +P ammo. I found out the hard way also, before reading the owner’s book. I loaded my brand-new Judge with Cor-Bon 45 +P, and it jammed on the first round. I cleared it, and once more it jammed. Then I read the book, changed to the recommended Long Colt ammo, and have loved using the revolver ever since.

Please keep up all the good work that you have been doing.

—Chris Weems

New Waverly, Texas

Re "Firing Line," December 2009

In the letters section last month, Roger Eckstine was writing about a future rimfire pistol test. He stated that the Sig Mosquito pistol had been recalled and returned to the store. Being as I own a Sig, I went to the Sig web page and could find no recall notice. Is there something that you know that is not on the Sig web page? Thanks for your assistance.

—Bob Meneghini

Enumclaw, Washington

Sorry, that was confusing language. We had two on loan from a store ready to test, but the store "recalled" them to sell them. There isn’t a recall notice on the Mosquito that we know about. —Todd Woodard

Re "Coming Up," December 2009

In what issue do you intent to publish the article on the 22-caliber AR-15 rifles? —Bob Caughey

March or April 2010. —tw

Re "Downrange," December 2009

Hey Todd—Keep up the editorial comments on our gun rights and those in the media who support our rights. I’m 75 and bought my first rifle 62 years ago and still have not used a firearm unlawfully or negligently. Great publication!

—Roger Metzger

Sunriver, Oregon


Write Us!