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CMP M1 Garand Experience?

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Hey everyone. Looking to do a trip and take my Sons down to the Alabama CMP and buy an M1 Garand. Does anyone on here have experience with visiting here?  I know the paperwork requirements etc. What was the selection like in the store?  Is it worth a 4 hour trip from Knoxville vs mail order?

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I went twice, once for a Garand and once for an M1 Carbine. That was a few years ago. They had a lot to select from. I picked out 3 or 4 of each, gave them to an Armorer and had him go through them and pick the best one. So it was worth it....to me.

The last Garand I got; they didn’t have a big selection, so I just ordered it.

Both the North and South Stores have their own areas on the CMP forum, and members post updates about what’s available.

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18 minutes ago, DaveTN said:

Both the North and South Stores have their own areas on the CMP forum, and members post updates about what’s available.

This.  Look for the South Store report on the CMP forum.  People go into great detail of each week’s situation.

I always wanted to make the pilgrimage down to Anniston but never did.  

Edited by Garufa

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Thanks guys just found that forum. Never knew to look there. I think I may go down next weekend. 

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Look over the previous week report and get an idea of what your looking for. Me best bang for buck is SA or H&R Field Grade.

If wants are a SA or Win WWII you may find with Win being pricey. Get there early and ask for help at counter to plck one out for starters. Get plenty of ammo and clips/enblocs.   Go weekday if possible. your close,much better than doing mail order.  Post photo if you get one,da aint makin no mo.

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There are several Knoxville/East TN guys on that forum that make frequent trips  down there.  Join the forum and introduce yourself.

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I made the trip to Anniston back in 2007 and got my first Garand. The folks in the store are very friendly and extremely helpful. You can borrow bore and chamber gauges to help you in your selection. I too was told to be there when they opened. For me it was about an 8 hour trip. So I went down, spent the night in a motel and was there when they opened the next morning. Great road trip and well worth it.  :up:

BTW: take extra money and pick up lots of ammo and any accessories while you're there. ;)

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I know you said you know the paperwork requirements, but did you know you can submit them and have them pre-approved? At least you could when I went. I did that because I didn’t want some paperwork screw-up wasting my trip.

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I've been several times in the last few years, most recently in October.  They keep 40-50 rifles on the racks there.  A crew miles away is the Talladega shooting center.  The pro shop there also keeps another 40-50 rifles in their racks.  It's a CMP store also.  It typically has higher-end Garands, though.  Both stores re-stock the racks daily, so you never know what will be put out each day.

The last time I was there, they had some 1903 and 1903a3 rifles in the racks.  Very tempting! 😊 

Remember that at the store you will pay Alabama sales tax, and that if you mail in your order you do not and shipping is free.

But, just browsing the store and picking it out yourself is an experience.

Do not overlook the CMP Specials if you want a great shooter at a bargain price!  Completely rebuilt with a match grade barrel and new wood.  

Also, if you buy at the store, you get a certificate for range time at the Talladega shooting center.

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Is there a limit? One per visit? Per year? Per lifetime?

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I've made a few trips to CMP.  As said above the selection varies from day to day.

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Selection has been really good lately, and yes it’s worth the trip.  GO!

Edited by i1afli
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Really appreciate all of you. I’m thinking of making the trip the weekend after next now and taking my boys. Going to take Dave’s advice and send the paperwork ahead of time. 

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You can download fillable pdf forms from the CMP website and pre-fill them out and take them with you, but I don’t think they will approve anything until you buy something, but I may be wrong.

The most difficult requirements for most people to meet are the live-fire training (can be met with CC permit or hunting license that requires live fire) and the associated club membership (ORSA or Garand Collecters Association will meet that)...you can join GCA online, print the receipt and take it with you.  Just be sure to doublecheck the paperwork requirements and take it all with  you...along with a lot of money or a credit card with plenty of “room” on it. 

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On 1/19/2020 at 10:26 AM, TomInMN said:

Is there a limit? One per visit? Per year? Per lifetime?

Limit on Garands is 8 per calendar year . Limit on 03 Springfields is 1 per calendar year (when they have them). The last 2 years I have gone on the Friday before Labor Day. I went specifically looking for a Garand in 2018 and there was not one there I'd even shoot a rabid dog with. They were all rough looking field grades with Hackberry Stocks.  I ended up getting a bayonet and some slings and other trinkets and found a REALLY nice Garand on Gunbroker that I was willing to pay for. Then in 2019 I went specifically looking for an 03 Springfield this after they had been getting some in and as you would know they had some 03 Springfields and a bunch of NICE Garands.....when I was not looking for one nor ready to pay for one. I drooled over some of the Garands and got a nice Rock Island 03 Springfield and bayonet. The Garands were some of the ones that came back from the Philipines and they cleaned up very nicely. NIce GI stocks too. Oh well that's just my luck. 

If you go you should also check out the Berman Museum in Anniston LOTS of guns and historical stuff collected by a CIA guy who filled up 8 passports travelling the world and "acquiring" artifacts. Hilter's tea set and some of Mousilini's stuff is in there. The museum was well worth the trip for me. And then go hit Cooter Brown's Rib Shack and you've had a full enjoyable day. 

Edited by Cruel Hand Luke
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