Sunday, December 05, 2004


The Old Man and I got into it the other night about what rifle reloads more quickly: the AR style rifle or a Garand.

As we've not been in the field for awhile, and have somewhat murky prospects, the dispute was not easily resolved (i.e. me with a 10-rd mag loaded with 8 and him with his Garand.)

Without actual field-testing, and even that would be inaccurate because I'm sure there are tons of people who can reload an AR faster than me, it comes down to a matter of opinion.

The Old Man makes the point that the Garand self-ejects the clip and you only need to jam a new one in. As well, the Garand bolt automatically releases once the clip is seated. There is no button to drop the clip, as it ejects by itself, and there is no bolt release.

We also agreed that magazine-couplers could not be considered in this argument. We are talking about an empty rifle that locks back and you reload from the belt with a clip/magazine.

My point is, yes there are more motions in an AR reload. The bulk of my argument rests on the fact that a mag-well makes jamming the magazine far easier than seating a clip in a Garand. If you haven't fired one, it can be a bit tricky. Under stress, a box magazine is a lot easier to jam in.

In any case, opinions are welcome and encouraged.

Give a man his weapon of choice, and I don't know whether or not the difference will be appreciable. I think that if a guy loves the AR and practices and shoots faithfully, he will probably do pretty well with it.

Likewise, give a man who loves the Garand and knows the nuiances of the gun, and he can probably reload and bring the weapon into battery just as quick as a talented hand with an AR.

I do think your point about the box mag is well taken. For the average Joe picking up a rifle, the AR will probably be quicker to get loaded, and require less training.

Given good training, I don't think I'd wager on either gun getting loaded quicker. It's a matter of the guy loading it.

I've seen some sixgunners who can drop a speedloader in a revolver just as fast as some people can load an autopistol.

Interesting subject, though.
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