Inland Mfg has been on a pretty good roll since they brought the old name back online and started producing weapons that could have been if only they had continued. I have already tested and reviewed their M1 carbine and their excellent USGI M1911A1. If you read those reviews you know I was impressed with both. The first M1 I tested rated pretty highly with me, though the same gun got a bad rap by some later testers who didn’t mention the hell I had put it through in my abusive testing. I couldn’t make it fail me no matter how hard I tried while keeping my abuse within reality. This Jungle Carbine, as the company calls it is just as tough, possibly more accurate and has a nifty little new feature easy to miss.
The Jungle M1 Carbine comes in a very nice box that keeps it packed nice and tight. Not really something that matters about the guns function, but to me sometimes attention paid to these kind of details can give you a hint about how seriously the maker takes other aspects.
The inside has the gun snug in foam , with sight and bolt handle protectors. It came with two 15 round mags and a new Inland 30 round magazine. It also came with the owners manual etc, and the ever present lawyer lanyard.
Looking at the blister pack the 30 rounder cam in, I noticed on the back the specs for other mags Inland offers, I did not know they had a 10 rounder. But that is good to know. If you decided you wanted to hunt with the gun, this would make finding a magazine limited to the legal capacity for hunting a lot easier.
The mags all seem to be made to the mil specs of all other real USGI M1 carbine mags I have seen and owned. They worked as they should with no problems. It can be dicey getting surplus mags that work in my experience so its good to know you can get new ones that are up to snuff.
The carbine has all the markings as other models in all the right places, This mimics the USGI models and the originals. Just like the WW2 models, this one has all the same small details attended to.
The buttstock has the logo and the slot for the oil bottle that also works as the mounting point for the sling. The wood of the stock on the test model is a nice walnut, darker than the first test gun and has the look you associate with originals with their darker stocks. Some people I showed the first model , thought the lighter color of the wood some how was off to their eyes. I had to point out to them that they are used to seeing stocks oiled and reoiled over 60 years.
Of course the new Inlands have something hard to find on originals. A top handguard that actually matches the rest of the stock.
The fire controls are all standard M1 carbine. These having the button safety as opposed to the lever. The mag release being forward of the safety. Something some people have said they have had trouble with in the past. It is what it is though. The guns being made correctly to the originals more than trying to modernize or correct anything.
The bolt operates the same as all others, cycle to chamber a round, with a button at the rear , used to manually lock the bolt back for administrative purposes or light cleaning or malfunction clearing. The mag will not lock empty on a 15 round man but it will on a 30 rounder.
Now on to accuracy testing.
I was able to make a very solid shooting set up for the gun. I took advantage of the slot in the stock and was able to lock it down almost like a vice.
After testing all the option of ammo which is basically different versions of ball ammo and some soft point, I selected the most accurate loads. I used the PPU ball and some OLD remington soft points. I then went on to shoot at 100, 125, 150 and some at 200 yards.
I have read a lot about the guns limited range and accuracy. I get sick of this as it always seems to be more talk than action by those worthies. I decided to shoot this gun for accuracy in a way that would better show its potential on a man sized target in a self defense capacity.
First group at 100 yards. I intended to shoot 10 rounds but lost count as you can see. I fired this iron sight like I did all groups, and from the bench and bags. The small peep is not good for my oddball eyes as a larger peep is easier for me. So to make up for the peep not working well for my eyes and to make sure I got all I could out of it, I made sure to use the sand bagged/locked down set up.
The 125 yard group is shown on the targets “head”. I have seen some guys who couldn’t do this with an M4 using an ACOG. Not to say this is some how my ability, as I said the gun was nearly locked into a vice or as vicelike as I could manage, which was pretty good. I simple lined up the sights then worked the trigger while making sure the gun didn’t slowly move off target. After seeing this performance, I really wished I could pull the same set up off with other model rifles.
Above is the 150 yard group, Same set up. The group isn’t much bigger than the first two. Which ideally is what you would want, but I am sure it may surprise a decent amount of naysayers. Not as good as a decent AR15 of course. but that is not a fair comparison. This was a PDW meant to replace the handgun. This is still good enough to make a head shot possible if you could hold steady enough in the field. Probably unlikely in combat or any field shooting. Making tight groups in the field is obviously a lot different than the range but you would be surprised how many seem to never want to acknowledge that little factoid. Making hits accurately at any distance and in the field in any position is something I wish we had more competitions that strove to replicate.
Group above is the 75 yard group. This is the closest I fired at this target and the group I set as the zero of the sights. That is actually a 10 round group. This was fired with the remington ammo that is so old I am not even going to bother showing because it couldn’t be found anyway. If did show it, some one would go buy new made remington ammo and when it didn’t shoot as well blame me or be really let down. The ammo was so old in fact, that some of it misfired. I show this last because I originally didn’t intend to show it since the ammo can’t be purchased. But on second thought, it is worth showing just to give an idea of my zero and how well the gun will do within the range most people think is “far” for it.
I had only 5 rounds left and fired at this tiny man shaped target at 200 yards . I fired semi off hand and hit it twice solid and a glance shot on the top (readers) left. The other rounds landed so close I thought I hit it. The entire target is a little bigger than the cardboard man sized Q target’s “head.” The gun and round will make hits further. You can find me making hits at 300 with the first test M1 I was sent. The gun would make a great trunk gun or walking pack rifle or self defense gun if you live in a commie state. No doubt it is still as handy today as it was in the 40s and 50s.
The reliability and function of the gun was as it should be, I had no malfunctions other than ancient ammo being duds. The gun worked though I left it un-oiled. I fired an uncomfortable amount of 30 carbine through it. Uncomfortable because of the price. The gun had a hair over 500 rounds through it. All I could find at cabellas and every local guns store and some old trashed looking stuff salvaged from a defunct pawn shop that had been collecting rust and dust since Rome fell.
Now to the new feature and something that make it more appealing to some.
The cone like flash hider/muzzle device may look funny to some, or familiar to others. You may have seen something like it on the Bren, the British Enfield “jungle carbine” bolt action and possibly M1 carbines cut down and used by US advisors, Special Forces or Vietnamese troops in Vietnam. I’m not going to pretend to know the actual history of how any of those came in use and in association with use in jungles. Maybe Dan will have some insight to add or one of the wonderful commentators who have started posting here more from weaponsman. I will say that it looks pretty cool and it can be removed to allow you to thread on a sound suppressor. Or, the name it is known by if you are a left wing anti-gun kook, a silencer. That is a pretty neat little perk I think. This would allow mounting of a can to a gun that would look just like any USGI M1 but with a suppressor, That would make for a neat package to me. Of course you could attach other muzzle devices that would work with the bore size.
The Jungle carbine otherwise is a gun made for the smaller niche of Vietnam era Advisor type weapons. In the early years when US advisors and ARVN troops used the WW2 US family of weapons Many SF troops would modify weapons to make them handier for jungle fighting. Inland in fact makes a model they dubbed the Advisor which is a “pistol.” That is to say the ATF says that is what it is anyway. It mimics a cut down M1 in a way a Green Beret would have modifies it for easier jungle carry.
The small size and light recoil of the M1 made it popular with Vietnamese troops. The communists and RVN troops both appreciated it s attributes. You can see it in the hands of various units and factions in many pictures of the war. In a time before the M16 became issued to ARV troop, no doubt it was much desired when compared to the M1 Garand for the smaller sized Asian users.
No doubt in the hot jungles and hills and rice paddies, the M1 carbine would have been an easy rifle to carry. Pictured above is the jungle carbine as used by an “advisor” wearing ARVN airborne camo and using the M56 web gear. The M56 general purpose ammo pouches having been made in a transitional time and will hold the 30 round M1 carbine mags, M1 garand block clips, 40mm grenades, regular fragmentation grenades, M14 mags and BAR magazines. Of course a little later on , they held M16 twenty round mags. A versatile pouch though it does have its flaws and draw backs. Uniform and webgear from mooremilitaria. If you are a collector of vietnam war gear and uniforms or just want some repro to wear and use, Moore militaria is your answer. If you want a carbine, Inland is your answer to that.
Lastly., some ammo from 1952. M1 carbine .30cal on the original strippers. Ball and tracers 30 cal carbine.