First Look: Springfield Armory M1A Loaded - 6.5 Creedmoor

Unless you're a military buff or a highpower competition shooter of a certain age, you may not know a whole lot about the M1A. It's the semiauto civilian version of the M14, a rifle that marked time between the M1 Garand and the AR-15 as the U.S. service rifle, and it introduced the 7.62x51 cartridge—which sporting enthusiasts know as the .308 Winchester.

My exposure to the M1A came one summer when I got to shoot the highpower at the National Matches as part of the Army shooting team. They really only took me along so they had another grunt to work the target pits during the team matches, but I fell in love with the rifle—the feel of it, the accuracy of it, the fun of it.

But the M1A/M14 is not perfect, and one of its problems is caliber. While the .308 is legendary for its accuracy, it's no shrinking violet in the recoil department. Springfield Armory recognized this just like the military did half a century ago, and it recently brought out an M1A Loaded version in 6.5 Creedmoor.

https://files.osgnetworks.tv/10/files/2018/02/SpringfieldArmouryM1A_6_5_Creedmoor.jpg

The new chambering offers a ballistically superior cartridge with much-reduced recoil, which is why the 6.5 Creedmoor is the darling of the long-range crowd. The rifle weighs 11.4 pounds, thanks in part to the Archangel stock that's adjustable for comb height and length of pull. It's heavy, yes, but as a rifle intended for long range work—off a bipod, bags or some kind of field rest—it doesn't have to be light.


It features a 22-inch stainless steel National Match medium-weight barrel with a muzzle brake, and it comes with a National Match front post sight and a National Match adjustable rear sight. For my testing I borrowed Springfield steel M1A scope mount and installed a Nikon Black X1000 4-16x50mm scope.


Between the rifle weight, the mild-mannered cartridge and the muzzle brake, the M1A Loaded is a pussycat to shoot. Because of its light recoil, you can spot your own hits or misses on steel—important in many long-range events.


I logged a lot of range time with this new rifle and came away impressed with its accuracy. My full review will appear in the May/June issue of RifleShooter magazine.

For more information, visit www.springfield-armory.com.

Recommended for You

Smith & Wesson's M&P15 SPORT II OR rifle with Crimson Trace CTS-103 optic will be on display at the Smith & Wesson Booth at the 2019 NRA Show. MSR

M&P15 SPORT II Rifle Available with CTS-103 Optic

Rifle Shooter Digital Staff - April 23, 2019

Smith & Wesson's M&P15 SPORT II OR rifle with Crimson Trace CTS-103 optic will be on display...

Winchester Repeating Arms releases the new autoloading Wildcat 22 LR rimfire rifle. Rimfire

Winchester Releases Wildcat 22 LR Rimfire Rifle

Rifle Shooter Digital Staff - April 11, 2019

Winchester Repeating Arms releases the new autoloading Wildcat 22 LR rimfire rifle.

Big game hunters in search of an accurate, long-range rifle need look no further than Browning and the new X-Bolt Hell's Canyon Speed Long Range McMillan. Bolt-Action

New Browning X-Bolt Hell's Canyon Long Range McMillan Rifles

RifleShooter Online Staff - November 07, 2018

Big game hunters in search of an accurate, long-range rifle need look no further than Browning...

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Hornady 6MM Creedmoor

Hornady 6MM Creedmoor

Tom Beckstrand and Neal Emery of Hornady highlight the 6MM Creedmoor ammo.

All About .300 Blackout

All About .300 Blackout

The .300 Blackout is here to stay, and we take some time to look at new technology surrounding this cartridge. Next, we pit subsonic rivals against each other before stretching the legs of this CQB round out to 600 yards from a short 9-inch barrel.

Delta 5 - Daniel Defense

Delta 5 - Daniel Defense's New Precision Bolt Action Rifle

Those looking to explore precision rifle shooting without going broke will be well served by Daniel Defense's new Delta 5.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

The Federal Berger Hybrid Hunter Ammo combines high BCs with a forgiving bullet profile and promises versatile performance. Ammo

Federal Berger Hybrid Hunter Ammo

Brad Fitzpatrick - April 30, 2019

The Federal Berger Hybrid Hunter Ammo combines high BCs with a forgiving bullet profile and...

SIG SAUER adds to its Elite Match ammo line with the 30-06 Springfield. Ammo

New 30-06 Springfield Elite Match Ammo from SIG SAUER

Rifleshooter Online Editors - April 03, 2019

SIG SAUER adds to its Elite Match ammo line with the 30-06 Springfield.

A simple test shows how runout can affect the accuracy of your rounds. Shooting Tips

The Rundown on Runout

Joseph von Benedikt - May 13, 2019

A simple test shows how runout can affect the accuracy of your rounds.

See More Stories

More Semi-Auto

The special-edition Browning BAR Safari Anniversary model celebrates a special rifle. Semi-Auto

The Browning BAR at 100 Years

Stan Trzoniec - June 06, 2018

The special-edition Browning BAR Safari Anniversary model celebrates a special rifle.

Rifle technology has been evolving for centuries to become the accurate and reliable firearms we Semi-Auto

The Best New Rifles for 2014

RifleShooter Online Staff - January 28, 2014

Rifle technology has been evolving for centuries to become the accurate and reliable firearms...

Thompson Auto-Ordnance, maker of the famous Semi-Auto

Auto-Ordnance Introduces "Airborne" M1 Carbine

RifleShooter Digital Staff - November 20, 2018

Thompson Auto-Ordnance, maker of the famous "Tommy Gun" and other classic firearms throughout...

See More Semi-Auto

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.