An M1A™ of a Different Color: A Loaded Precision Adjustable Rifle Rundown

Posted by Rob Leatham

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Jun 25, 2015 10:37:00 AM

M1ABreakdown-Tangibles-2

Different look. Same great rifle.

The M1A™ Loaded Precision Adjustable Stock (PAS) rifle is now available in your choice of two stock and hand-guard colors – the fan-favorite Flat Dark Earth (FDE) and the tried and true classic black.

But it’s still the M1A™ you know and love:

  • Same metal work
  • Same barrel, action, gas system and trigger
  • Same reliable, soft-kicking and accurate performance

So it’s the same great rifle in a new color.

Lasting Impressions

This got me to thinking, though, so bear with me for a moment. Why is the M1A™ still relevant? Ever wonder why the popularity of some things seem to last forever? What does an innate object need to have for lasting appeal?

I asked myself, “What else is out there that I still like as much now as the first time I saw it?”

Why do I still love the original Shelby Mustangs?
Power and attitude never grow old.

Why do I so love the 1911 pistol?
Performance, reliability and power.

And the Ducati 916 motorcycle?
It was the benchmark of performance and beauty when introduced and is still the best-looking of the modern-era sport bikes.

I could sit and stare at all these things for hours. I love to touch and hold them. I never owned the Shelby, but it’s still on my bucket list. I did own the 916 and still lament ever selling it. I’m lucky to own many really great 1911s.

And I own several M1A™ rifles. But why? 

The Power of Character

I think I have finally put my finger on it. All these things have incredible character.

They always look so “cool” to me. But it’s not just about looks. What makes something iconic is that it stands the test of time. And even decades after its introduction, the M1A™ is still able to perform. Yes, it must be character.

Many new things are designed, built and go out of style and never gain a following. They’re quickly forgotten. But the M1A™ is a survivor. This is what sets it apart in that “modern classic” category.

And all have some things in common. All of them have purpose. All are eminently useful and still make you feel good when you look at them. (My wife is like that too.)

Breaking it Down

So what are the tangibles – what makes an M1A™ rifle tick?
To me it breaks down to power, compatibility, sights and speed. 

Power-1 

The round it chambers is as much a reason as any for the gun’s success. I like the .308 cartridge – it is possibly the most versatile medium rifle round ever developed. While I can make an argument that one round or another is better for a specific task, the .308 is pretty good all around. It’s the multi tool of small-arms ammunition.

I routinely shoot anywhere from 110-175 grain bullets. This gives me many options – high-velocity, light bullets with flat trajectory and lots of energy or heavy, high-BC (ballistic coefficient) bullets with lots of momentum, capable of sustaining supersonic velocities out to 800 or more meters.

Capability-1

Not all semi-auto actions can handle the .308 round. The M1A™ PAS FDE does. It has always been, in my opinion, the coolest of the “real battle rifles.” I guess it’s a .30 caliber thing.

Sights-1

All that potential power would be useless if you couldn’t hit anything with it, right? So take that power, and add the M1A™ mechanism.  It’s easy to maintain, very accurate and, most of all, easy to use well. I don’t know if it’s the trigger pull or the ergonomics or the light recoil, but most shooters can immediately hit targets with one of these.

You all know they dominated service rifle competitions for many years and are still used as designated marksman rifles by elite military groups due to this innate accuracy, but mine is one of the first loaded PAS rifles produced. I used it in the original introductory announcement video, and many have fired it. Everyone hits what they are shooting at with it. Everyone walks away impressed.

Speed-1

Along with the light recoil, you never have to take your hand off the grip to fire the next shot. It is fast. And that makes it better. Shot after shot, you just squeeze the trigger, never having to move your hands. Not having to let go of your shooting grip to work the action makes it even better. Just watch the target through the scope as the bullet impacts – it’s pretty cool.  

The FDE color looks neat and the PAS works awesomely. In my opinion, it’s the total package.

MORE FROM SPRINGFIELD ARMORY®

Which M1A™ is Right for You?
Explore the M1A™ Rifle Series
Range Report - M1A™ Precision Adjustable Stock 

Topics: Tactical Rifles


Springfield Armory® recommends you seek qualified and competent training from a certified instructor prior to handling any firearm and be sure to read your owner’s manual.  These articles are considered to be suggestions and not recommendations from Springfield Armory®.