Everyone loves the M1 Garand rifles… Who wouldn't?
Adding a red dot sight to this 7.62mm caliber hard-hitting semi-automatic rifle makes it more fun to shoot.
The Hopco adapter is our favorite red dot mount for its minimalistic setup that replaces the rear iron sight.
Now It’s widely used by civilians for hunting, target shooting, and historical collectible.
This post will show you some optics accessories for the M1. to increase accuracy and faster target acquisition.
M1 Garand Scope Mount Installation
The question is where do you mount the optic on the rifle?
You can mount it on the handguard top rail or replace the rear iron sight.
Right now on the market, I highly recommend the two following accessories:
It makes it a tactical M1 and better than ever.
The first method is to replace the rear aperture sight with a Hopco mount plate adapter.
The second method is to mount the red dot sight on the UltiMAK M12 rail mount that clamps to the barrel assembly.
The Hopco plate adapter provides micro red dot sight mounting solution to the M14 family.
By keeping the optic mount low, the user can cheek the rifle better while aligning the iron sights. It also makes the aesthetics of the rifle better.
The Hopco m1 mount is basically a rear sight red dot mount. The shooter can quickly pick up the rifle and it acquires the sight.
The Hopco plate is compatible with a micro-sized red dot sight such as the Trijicon RMR, Delta Point Pro, Vortex Viper, Burris Fastfire and many more. Watch the installation video here
The Picatinny style rail is also available for it. The rail section is made from the heavy duty 6061 T6 Aluminum that clamps to the barrel.
The rail section is on top of the handguard, and it provides you with a front low optic mount like how people do it on the AK.
UltiMAK and Amega have the product you need if you want to mount a bigger optics such as Aimpoint Micro, Eotech, and other variable zoom scopes.
Links to the products are below.
Red Dot Beats The Standard Iron Sight
The M1 Garand accuracy is pretty good for an old rifle. It shoots the 30-06 or the 308.
Those calibers are made for long distance accurate shooting.
The sight picture is pretty fast to pick up. The rifle can reach as far as 500 yards with just iron sights.
So why not be more accurate with it?
This is where a red dot sight can make shooting long distance much better than just using the iron sight.
The standard M1 front sight is about 8 inches wide at 100 meters. It doubles every 100 meters until the front sight post completely covers up a human size target, where you can’t even see it anymore. That means you will miss the shot most likely.
A small size 3.5 MOA red dot sight covers only 3.5 inches wide at 100 meters.You can still get a good sight picture up to 400 yards with the red dot, which means you can aim more accurately. Many people find it extremely pleasing to shoot than the traditional iron sights.
Both Eyes Open – Increased Situational Awareness
Situation awareness and fast target acquisition mean everything in today's tactical world. Fortunately, we have better technologies available today to make it easier for shooters.
The traditional iron sight forces you close one eye while aiming down the sight.
However, the red dot sight completely changes that by eliminating the need to align rear sight, front sight, and the target altogether. To learn more about red dot sight click here.
All you need is to put the dot on the target and shoot without any parallax.
The advantage of shooting with open eyes open is for better situational awareness. You can quickly aim and shoot down range while keeping your peripheral vision wide open.
The M1 Garand is a heavy recoil beast. People called it the “A Real Man’s Gun,” and it’s not for pussies. You have only eight bullets, so make each shot count.
2 Recommended Optics
Trijicon RMR is one of the most durable miniature red dot sights on the market. It’s the gold standard for pistol red dot sights.
Most tactical handguns prefer the Trijicon RMR for its battery life and durability.
It absorbs impact and diverts stresses away from the lens to increase durability.
Also, it’s the most popular offset micro red dot on many rifle platforms for military and law enforcement.
Leupold Delta Point Pro is a direct competitor to the Trijicon RMR. Leupold is another world-class optics maker.
The Delta Point Pro features a 2.5 MOA red dot reticle that is fine enough for reaching long distance shot more effectively.
The sight is light and also features Leupold’s patented Motion Sensor Technology.
Any movement will automatically activate the reticle.
It turns off when not using to save battery life.
Those two optics are highly recommended.
Does The Red Dot Sight Sit Too High On The Rifle?
If you have never shot the M1 with a red dot sight and you probably have questions regarding the sight height.
The sight height about where you cheek the rifle is similar to a 1/3 co-witness height on an AR15.
It’s just a half of an inch over the rear sight aperture. So cheek the gun like an AR15, and you will see the sight just fine.
Will The En-bloc Clip Ejection Hit The Red Dot Sight Causing Damage?
The M1 is fed using an En Bloc clip that holds eight rounds of 30-06 caliber bullet. When the last cartridge is fired, the rifle ejects the clip and holds the bolt open.
It creates the very satisfying “PING” metal sound, which made this rifle very popular and unique.
This is a signature sound that the M1 is known for, and a lot of the shooters love so much about it for some weird reason.
When the en bloc clip ejects out of the gun, it does not hit the red dot that is mounted on the rear sight block receiver.
However, the pattern of the shell ejection tends to rub right pass the front frame of the red dot sight causing some brass marks.
Will The Brass Hit The Optic Glass Surface?
This is a common fear micro red dot users have. We have seen it on MRD( Micro Red Dot ) handguns before.
Based on the handgun community feedback, the ejecting brass does hit the optic frame a little.
However, the brass ejection out of the rifle goes nowhere near the glass, so don’t worry about it hitting at all.
The Difference Between M14 and M1 As Far As Optic Mount
Pretty much they have the same design, but the M14 uses a magazine, and the M1 uses the en-bloc clip.
The M14 users don’t have to load the bullets from the top, which gives it more real estate space for mounting optics.
The M1’s top loading design prevents any mounting adapters that can interfere with the loading port and clip ejection.
Additional Resources by Forgotten Weapons
Click here to watch – Prototype Optic for the M1
Check out Hopco MRD adapter
Check out Ultimak M12 Rail
As the content creator of badassoptic.com, My background in the firearms industry and shooting sports gives me the experience to recommend tried and true products and keep away subpar ones.