The Marushin M-2 Carbine SI (Spartan Imports) Version 8MM
A Little Background...
The M-1 Carbine was a small rifle developed in the early 1940`s as a stop gap weapon to arm U.S. troops such as noncommissioned officers, special troops, like field kitchen cooks (the nickname for the carbine was "the cooks rifle") and others instead of issuing pistols, which were in short supply. The Marushin M-2 carbine is representative of a later development of the M-1. The M-2 was given selective fire capability, a ramp sight, a bayonet lug and a larger magazine. M-2 carbines were a common sight starting with the Korean War. It really isn`t a WW2 era gun, but it would bettter than using a M14 in a historic WW2 skirmish. These carbines served well up into the Viet Nam war with some US and South Vietnamese troops.
The Marushin Creation
The Marushin carbine arrived in a basic cardboard box and just like it`s M-1 Garand brother, it was supplied with a couple allen wrenches, a small pack of BB`s and a well written (translated) instruction booklet with a parts diagram. The carbine is very light for wood stocked gun weighing in at four and three quarter pounds. The wood on the gun is decent and not a bad shade for a carbine stock. The staining is thin though, and the wood under it is light colored, so scratches will show up very well. The metal is finished in black and it goes well with the darker stock. There is an orange band painted on the muzzle. The gun comes with a replica of the 30 round M2 magazine which holds up to 18 BBs with ease. The magazine has two gas fill valves. The magazine clips into the gun smartly and securely. The rear sight is the M-2 ramp version and it adjusts easily for elevation and windage. The safety is on the trigger guard and it snaps properly into either position. The magazine release is located just ahead of the safety, both are shown in the middle photo below. There is a selector for the full auto/single shot mode on the left side of the action ("A" in the photo below). This doesn`t seem to set in position very well. The action works a little rough, but it is robust for a little rifle like this. There is a small pin that you can depress on the bolt handle to lock the bolt back, otherwise it is closed all the time("B" in the photo below). There is the basic gun model stamping on the reciever similar to the original guns. The gun has the feel and all around likeness of the real thing.
Out To The Range...
I took the gun out for a test drive using a can of UHC Green gas and a bottle of propane with an adaptor as well as Marushin .34g BBs. I didn`t adjust the sights and I didn`t diddle with the hop up as I wanted to try for an "out of the box experience" with this gun. I cleaned the barrel and put a loaded mag into the gun and took a few free hand shots at a milk jug on the fence from about 50 feet. Just about every shot connected to my surprise. Unlike the Marushin M-1 Garand, I didnt experience any "fly away shots" as all were basically true to my aim. I switched the selector over to full auto and tried a burst at the same target. It fired continiously until I released the trigger. When I pulled the trigger again, nothing happened. It doesn`t seem to cock well at the end of a burst, as the hammer traveled forward with the bolt. It will need a little work to correct this problem. With a cycling of the action by hand though, the gun is ready to fire once more and it does. I would say about 1/3 of the time it doesn`t cock the hammer at the end of a full auto burst. The other thing is that when the mag is empty, the gun doesn`t know it and it will continue to use up your gas if you don't notice the absence of BBs coming out of the barrel. I reloaded the magazine and went at it a second time in single shot. After a few shots, the gun went full auto. This is due to the selector creeping back into the full auto position. I find myself holding my left hand back by the reciever to hold the selector switch in the semi auto mode. The gun really wants to be full auto and the non-indenting selector often grants the gun its wish. Just another little bug to adjust out.
This magazine is one heavy piece of machinery. It has two fill valves which, like the M-1 Garand, don't seal well as you fill, allowing gas to escape from the can to the atmosphere. I have yet to find an upgrade valve to use. The one draw back to the magazine is the exposed BB stack at the front of the clip. It wouldnt be hard to get some dirt in there and eventually have it end up in your gun. There is no lock back for the spring loaded follower, so you have to hold it back while you stack the BBs in the mag. This was easy to do, actually. The mag is designed to hold 16 rounds, but 18 fit in with room to spare. I was able to get three volleys totalling 54 rounds with one fill of the gas chambers. In full auto mode, you will get substantially less, like one mag full before you run out or the bolt starts to freeze up on you.
Here is the target I used from a distance of 50 feet in semi auto mode. This is one clip of 16 rounds as per the spec for the gun. There were 13 hits and three shots that pulled up a few inches and hit the backing board instead of the paper target. All would have been hits if it was a man sized target. Keep in mind, I didn`t adjust the hopup or the sights. This is how it did right out of the box.
This is the same arrangement as the Garand as the set screw is located above the bolt at the front of the reciever. As with the Garand, a small adjustment will result in a big change. I didnt adust the hop up yet as the gun was shooting within my expectations. When I get my hands on some heavier BBs, I will probably have to crank it up a bit to get more distance. The gun shoots at just above 300 fps. The yellow arrow points to the cavity where the hopup screw is located.
At the handy "Gun Parts Corporation" website, I found a four pocket magazine pouch and the required sling set up for the carbine. The U.S. carbines require an oiler to attach the sling to the big hole in the stock. The oiler acts as a swivel in a way, anchoring the rear end of the sling to the gun. The top photo shows the sling and oiler in place. the sling needs only to be snapped shut to secure it. The middle photo show the sling in place from the other side of the stock. The bottom photo shows the oiler removed and opened up. I suppose you could keep silicone oil in there. You can get the sling and oiler as a set from GPC for about $9. The mag pouch, from 1951 was in excellent shape for $12. I didnt have a bayonet to try, but it looks like one will fit.
My Sample Defects...
First thing I noticed when I shouldered the rifle out of the box, was that the front sight was canted to one side. The entire outer barrel was loose and needed to be tightened. This required removing the bayonet lug/sling swivel and popping the upper hand guard off to access a small set screw. This screw tightens the outer barrel and it sinched up fine after I adjusted the assembly to correct the sight. I took the gun apart after shooting it for a while and didn`t find any loose screws like I did with the Garand. The action is a bit rough when you work it. It needs a bit of cleaning of the channels and grooves to get a smoother movement. It works, but it could work better with some attention. Other than the two issues with the magazine, the open BB slot and the leaky fill valves, this gun was pretty much defect free.
Go Buy One Now...
That is how I would sum up my experience with this gun. If you are into to historic weapons, this is one to get. It works fairly well, looks great, feels right and it is historically correct for a Korean War weapon. I bought my example from Wisconsin Airsoft Wars for $345.00. Shipping was free. Sweet...
Here are the stats of the gun...
System: Gas Operated Semi/Full Auto
Gas Type: Green Gas
Weight: 2150g (4 3/4 lbs)
Length: 912 mm
Magazine Capacity: 16 rnds (8 mm)
Muzzle Velocity: 315+ FPS
Package Includes: gun, magazine, manual
Realistic Bolt Operation
Authentic Safety Switch
Sling Attachment Points
Here is the link for the sling and pouch at GPC:
Sling and Oiler- scoll down when you get there, see other M2 stuff also.