M1A/M14/BM-59 Rifles From James River Armory at NRA Show 2017

Looking for an M14-style rifle chambered in .308, in all sorts of configurations from modernized and tacticool to classic wood stock? Well, manufacturer James River Armory, sold through Classic Firearms, has you covered (guest-reviewed on TTAG here). Might be a good alternative for folks who are averse to other brands? More photos follow . . .

comments

  1. avatar Sammy says:

    Good option now that Springfield is in the toilet

  2. avatar Captain O says:

    Glad to see it. These and their “Rockola” M1 Carbine are a good bet from James River Armory

  3. avatar California Richard says:

    Its been my experience that tacticool m14=heavy as crap and bad ergos.

    1. avatar YAR0892 says:

      At least now we have options.

    2. avatar Mikebandw186 says:

      Ya, but rails!

    3. avatar barnbwt says:

      Looks eerily similar to that Tacticool BAR (HCAR?) thing from a few years back. Looks at least as heavy, too.

  4. avatar MouseGun says:

    Well after what Springfield pulled in Illinois, good to see that they don’t have the monopoly on M1As. The million dollar question, however, is; are the made in South Korea?

  5. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    I’m still on the lookout for a BM59.

    1. avatar Other Tom in Oregon says:

      Esarco has cheap kits if you’re feeling all arts and craftsy. I’m planning on building two with my oldest this summer.

      1. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

        Going to go take a look at those.
        Thanks for the tip!

        1. avatar barnbwt says:

          The conversion is quite easy if you have all the BM59 parts you need, and doable in an afternoon with no more than a Dremel if you’re like me & don’t care too much what the interior of the magwell looks like. Very good threads & guides on weaponsguild (Shuff’s forum also has a ton of resources, but they’ll mostly tell you to have Shufflin do the job for you professionally)

          Very soft shooting guns, and quite handy. Really, *really* makes the M14 look bad considering how little all the extra time, complexity, expense, and incompatibility returned as dividends compared to the BM59.

    2. avatar Ed says:

      Classic firearms has them right now too.

  6. avatar rockhopper says:

    Classic Arms has them listed. The website is straight out of the 90’s, though. Horrible lack of navigation options and a 600+ multipart “page” of long guns. Irritating and sad, but I may stop whining and dig through it this weekend anyway.

  7. avatar Pwrserge says:

    I’ve never been sold on the m14 platform. It always seemed like a shitty upgrade to a decent rifle that was obsolete by the time it hit the battlefield. The open action and the other quirks inherent to the design leave a lot to be desired. Honestly, after shooting a hundred rounds through a Garand at my local CMP event, I was throughly disillusioned. It’s a big heavy rifle that doesn’t do anything that my LR-308 doesn’t for much more money and weight. It might have been a great gun in WWII, but technology has marched on.

    1. avatar BLAMMO says:

      If you can’t appreciate what the M1 Garand was at the time, you’re obtuse. It had a devastating advantage over the bolt actions with lesser magazines it faced.

      Yes, it’s big, heavy and dated in it’s design and I wouldn’t want to carry one around all day. But once the shooting starts, and you’ve got a Garand, you could do a lot worse and you really can’t do much better, even by today’s standards. You’ve brought enough gun.

      1. avatar Pwrserge says:

        In WWII? I’d take an FG-42 or an SVT-40 over the Garand any day. During the war, the gun was adequate, not overwhelmingly exceptional compared to its contemporaries. (Not WWI holdovers.)

        The M14 was a dumpster fire. Instead of designing a new gun to address the issues that the Garand had in WWII and Korea, the army just took a Garand, rechambered it for .308, slapped a giggle switch and a box magazine on it and called it a day.

        1. avatar Matt in SC says:

          Yep, it’s awesome. Fun range toy, and if you have an M1 Garand and an M16 styled AR at the range everyone with any sense comes by to look. Throw in an M1 Carbine and a MILSPEC 1911 and you won’t have time to shoot.

    2. avatar barnbwt says:

      The BM59, or at least the “Truppe Alpine” variant I made with the folding stock, is none of those things. The barrel is much shorter and incredibly thin in profile. Between that & the stock design, it is reminiscent of an M1 Carbine paratrooper so long as you don’t have a loaded mag in or the giant tri-compensator affixed to the muzzle. Those things make the gun heavy like any 308 of course, but the comp does an exceptional if loud job taming the recoil of a light gun with rather uncomfortable folding stock.

      And nothing about the gun now or as originally realized costs much more than an M1 Garand rifle. Certainly not millions of dollars and multiple years of armory development churn. I wouldn’t have nearly the ill feelings toward the M14 for its several failings vs more modern designs if the gun had actually been the temporary ‘stop gap’ built as a cheap retrofit of M1 rifles that was promised. That’s basically what the BM59 series were; originally retrofitted from in-service rifles, but all-new production by the end of the run, to be replaced by a proper clean-sheet assault rifle when time allowed (the AR70)

  8. avatar Timmy! says:

    I want to ask what the bullpup at the bottom of the second picture is, but I know me and know I won’t come back to look for the answer. Sooooo… um, never mind, I guess.

    1. avatar bobinmi says:

      It is a M14 in a juggernaut tactical, Rogue Bulpup chassis

  9. avatar joe3 says:

    ‘Might be a good alternative for folks who are averse to other brands?”

    heh-heh-heh…

  10. avatar Peter says:

    Fulton Armory also makes nice M14/ M1A ‘s. 🙂

  11. avatar Elvis says:

    Ooohhh… thats the elusive ‘tree of obsolescence’.

  12. avatar Geoff says:

    I won’t buy any modern guns from them, but I sure would like a 1903 Springfield and the M1 Garand in 30-06.
    Only problem is LOM (Lack Of Money).
    I like those good old heavy battle rifles.
    I already have a 1942 Mosin, a 1950 Yugo M48 8mm. Mauser and I just finished restoring an Enfield 1918 SMLE MKIII*.
    Eventually I will get an Arisaka and a Carcano.

  13. avatar Travis Simmons says:

    Bula Defense makes their m14 parts. They’re great. Completely made in America with American made parts.

  14. avatar Josh Mccarrell says:

    Check out the article in Firearms News (early May). Op rods are falling out of these things because of out of spec receivers.

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