Rifle rebuild article
Posted 11 February 2018 - 09:27 AM
Came across this and thought it interesting
Posted 11 February 2018 - 09:42 AM
That is interesting.
I wonder if it means that some of the M1A1 stocks thought to be bogus are in fact legitimate?
I've only had Mi Carbines, not M1A1's but have seen many of them declared fake, are some of those because of the stocks?
Posted 11 February 2018 - 11:17 AM
Posted 11 February 2018 - 01:53 PM
Very interesting, Ron. I knew that FN had done some work for the US Military but did not realize the full extent of it until reading this article.
The US military had very specific rebuild standards. I will have to go hunt down my literature on this subject to be certain, but my memory is that in the WW2 to KW era the standards required that any rebuild facility was required to identify its work with a suitable marking. This article indicates that no such marking was used on the FN rebuilds. That revelation is sure to cause some heartburn among those collectors who focus on factory original guns with no rebuild activity.
Thanks for bringing this to our attention.
Posted 11 February 2018 - 03:05 PM
Unfortunately, the article is mostly unsubstantiated crap. He makes lots of claims, but provides no support for anything.
An inspection of FN's work was conducted on August 22, 1945, by a U.S. Army ordnance officer. Here's how he describes the FN scope of work: "The processing of weapons at Fabrique Nationale can be described as a fourth echelon job, certainly not a fifth echelon or Arsenal reparation." That last word is a bit clumsy, but its root word is 'repair.' So FN's work didn't even rise to the level of repair, much less manufacturing parts on a large scale as is claimed. A better description might be 'clean and pack' with replacement of obviously damaged parts.
Does anybody believe FN was hand carving stocks as the author claims? There's an unpublished photo of FN workers using draw knives on U.S. stocks (my presumption is they were smoothing out dings). That's about as close to sculpting stocks as reality will support, though I'd like to hear if someone is capable of carving walnut to tolerances of a couple of thousandths.
Posted 12 February 2018 - 10:09 AM
Thank you for sharing, I must have glossed over it in my magazine. I don't think collectors of garands or carbines will find much new information the article. It is well known that contracts were awarded to FN and it has been covered in other books and articles, etc.; however, there were a couple of pictures I don't recall seeing before. I think most of the parts, stocks, etc., were supplied by the US. If not, it would be fairly obvious considering the wood used on other European/Asian rebuilds is not like US walnut (Danish, Italian, Korean, German, etc) To single out FN is a little absurd considering that rifles sent back to the states were rebuilt in the same manner as prescribed in the various TM's, TB's, T.O.'s, and SIP's, etc., too. Finding either in original configuration is rare, especially garands. carbines more often. thanks again.
Posted 12 February 2018 - 04:22 PM
Telling a story nobody has heard before is always a positive - unless the story is wrong. He also gets it wrong in his off the wall speculation on pistols and he's wrong on the claim that FN received all ETO small arms. On the latter, has he not heard of U.S. occupation troops and units redeploying to the Pacific? The latter packed their own gear.
You're on the right track on standards. Here's another excerpt from the inspection report: "If the weapons are to be delivered to an Arsenal for final inspection and storage then a conservative estimate would be that 75% would be reprocessed." Doesn't sound much like the operation described in the article, does it?
Posted 13 February 2018 - 09:43 AM
1stFLa, I concur with your assessment and comments posted on another forum, I had many of the same thoughts regarding numbers, requirements. etc, but this is a good forum, and found no reason to get into the weeds regarding the article. Thanks for your comments.
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