I finally bit the bullet and am purchasing my first firearm. I am deeply pasionate about history (hence being a history teacher)... but to be honest I could not justify owning a weapon (To some extent I kind of fear them... maybe respect is the right word to use instead of fear... and I am not a hunter and could never kill anything).
BUT... I recently learned that during the war, IBM made M1 Carbines and B.A.R.s in the facility VERY near to where I live. Because of this, I just HAD to own one.
I went to the local gunshop, and luckily they had an IBM in stock. From what I understand, according to the serial number, the reciever was made by IBM in early 1944. The barrel was made by IBM in 2-43 (Feb. 1943), and it has the flaming bomb Army Ordinance stamp. The metal components of my rifle show some wear (this seems obvious to me... as it's almost 70years old!)... but it seems like it's been well cared for. The barrel obviously has some wear, but it has good rifling.
The stock has a National Postal Meter NPM/FJA stamp in the wood, along with a few other markings that I will investigate soon. The stock is dinged and scratched up, but is solid and is in overall good condition. The stock has two holes on the side which the gunsmith believes were caused by an emblem or badge of somesort that was attached to it at some point. I guess these aspects of the rifle are not ideal in terms of collecting, but I really appreciate this because it is the history of this individual firearm. It means to me that this rifle saw some action, it wasn't packed away for it's entire existance or on display for 60+ years. Plus, as a first time gun owner, I didn't really want something that's in mint condition... I'd be too worried about wrecking it (It would sort of be like owning a Ferrari as a 16year old and then crashing it).
My carbine has a bayonet lug, post ww2 rear sight, and screw barrel band... so I believe that means the rifle was refitted after WW2 and could have seen action in Korea or Vietnam.
Finally, the barrel has "Georgia, VT" stamped onto it. If I understand this correctly, this means that my rifle was used in Israel for some time. "Georgia, VT" is the import mark of Century Arms International. Also, it appears that Century Arms stamped the serial number into the stock.
I am currently paying off this rifle... it cost $800, but should be paid off within a few weeks. I'm assuming the high price is due to the fact that IBM only made about 6% of the 6 million or so carbines that were produced during the war. There were cheaper, non IBM carbines at this particular gunshop, but they were in worse condition. There was also a "mint condition" IBM there for about $1000... but it looked too good to be true, and I put it down in favor of this more salty looking rifle.
Obviously it is still at the gunshop until I can pay it off, so I do not have good pictures of it. BUT, I was so excited that I snapped this picture with my cell phone... probably not a good idea... but I decided to try my luck
SO! How do you guys think I did? I know you fine gentlemen probably can not tell me much without pictures... but I promise to post high quality photos soon!