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Universal M1 Carbine info

Discussion in 'M1 Carbine' started by ElCide9, Mar 24, 2012.

  1. ElCide9

    ElCide9 G&G Newbie

    Mar 24, 2012
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    I just acquired an M1 carbine, marked Universal, serial number 356706. Are there any web sites out there or references out there regarding the history of this rifle, according to its serial number? Any info would be appreciated. Thanks.
  2. Chris

    Chris Administrator Staff Member

    Mar 8, 2002
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    First welcome to the site!

    Universal is a unique brand in my opinion, as they offered a decent M1 Carbine at a reasonable price, and they were simply everywhere. Local stores such as Sears, Roses, and many other local mom & pop stores offered them.

    A lot of the actual records from Universal have been destroyed but being they at least from the 1950's+ there can only be so much we can tell.

    From your serial number you provided, this looks to be a 3rd Generation of universal. The 3rd generation is known as the generation that cut out several safety features and gives the impression to most of poor quality and workmanship. One of the biggest issues with this generation was the ability to fire "out of battery" which is dangerous.

    That said, look over your rifle to see if any cracks along the slide, and so forth. Enjoy it.
  3. Huey Rider

    Huey Rider Rotorhead Savage Forum Contributor

    Oct 10, 2009
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  4. Capt'n Mil Coll

    Capt'n Mil Coll G&G Evangelist

    Mar 22, 2008
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    Universal M1 Carbines came in three basic Types.
    Type 1 was USGI and all parts interchanged with regular Government Issue Carbines. This is because they were made from parts purchased from the Government after World War II.
    The Type 2 M1 Carbines were made from a mix of USGI parts and parts manufactured for the rifles. This is because the manufacturer was running out of the leftover USGI parts. So some parts you can find others wont fit the rifles.
    The Type 3 like you have were a different style of rifle all together. Unlike the original USGI Carbines that had a single recoil spring, they used a Two Spring Recoil System. This is the carbine that most people like myself have had the problems with.

    You may have gotten lucky and purchased a good rifle. It is very hard to get parts for the Type 3 because they used parts that no other M1 Carbine has.

    My experience with a Type 3 Universal M1 Carbine is that it would, as Chris said, fire out of battery. In fact the Op rod would disconnect from the bolt when you fired it. It also would blow the metal ventilated handgaurd off. It would fail to fire (FTF) and fail to extract (FTE) constantly. It was the most frustrating rifle to shoot. I was constantly putting it back together.
    Its actually the only rifle I ever got rid of.

    That is only my experence with the Universal Carbine. Others on this forum have some and have no problems with them at all.
    Good luck with yours.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
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