Strange Garand clip found at SLICS

Found one of these on Anne’s table. Any idea what it is for? Is it some sort of action test clip??

Maybe some kind of tool or gauge to check if clips were in-spec?

It is attached to the clip and does not come off.

Hard to tell much from the photo. Could it be for single shot firing with a Garand? Does it even fit in a Garand?


Do you know the country of origin? The US gave out M1’s like candy after WW2 and it may help to determine what it is if we know where it is from. I showed the picture to a former US Army Armourer who served during the Korean War and he had never seen anything similar but speculated that it could be an action blocking tool, the small tabs at either end blocking the bolt from going into battery.


Ken, I think that is the best guess yet. I don’t have a Garand but I’m going to a buddy’s house who does to try it out.

Please let us know the results I would love to know what it actually is.

Having worked with M1’s for many years, both live fire (Pre-'96) and Cinematic/Re-enactment Blank fire since 1980s), one of the common problems is “crushed clips” This plate seems to return a clip back to its correct “spread” and normalize the pressure on the cartridges in the clip (Too tight, and there is failure to feed; too loose, and double feeds can occur).

Just my opinion…never seen such a tool, but I would think they would be available at Base Armoury level, for use with Training-recovered clips ( Battle clips are “expense stores”…use it and lose it!.)

AV Blankfire P/L…Movie Guns

Down Under

Asked and answered.

How many rounds does it hold?

None. Near as I can tell, the piece on the top is permanently mounted to the clip.

From the picture, it looks like the clip is pressed on and I suspect that the rust is keeping it there. I’d drop it in an electrolysis bath.

What happened?

Someone sent me this picture. It is in fact a tool to hold the shape during heat treat?? You can see what looks like an oven behind her left shoulder. It seems like it is crimped on though.

It looks like the oven door says something. All I can make out is “American” something or other. Those clips she has are a little different than mine but still the same device.

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Thinking about it now, and considering the Garand clip is made of rather thick AISI 1055 or higher spring steel, there would be a tendency for distortion during heat treatment…hardening, quenching, then drawing the temper. The plate, as shown with the lady taking them off after final cooling, seems to confirm the idea that it is a stabiliser during heat treatment. It is s made to clip into a Clip which is probably already folded over to its elastic limit, and thus the plate holds everything in place whilst the treatment takes place. The plate is probably pushed on with a tool and then “popped out”
with a simple tool through one of the slots or holes in it.

Interesting production process. Probably developed for the heavy steel Garand clip…normal thin Mannlicher style clips don’t require this.
Something to remember if we ever get into Garand clip manufacture!!!
Doc AV

From the great picture of the woman and the piles of clips on the table there is NO evidence the extra piece is being removed from or applied to the clips. No tool to apply or remove the extra piece and no piles of the stamped metal extra pieces.

I’m no expert on heat treating metal, but high temperature heat treating spring steel after it is in its final form seems counter productive to retaining the spring factor, Just my 2 cents worth.

If only the woman in the picture could describe to us what her job was.


It appears to me that the lady is holding a tool in her right hand. The lack of the separated pieces on the top of the table could possibly be explained by her dropping them into containers similar to the crate on the left that are on the floor behind the table.
Regarding the heat treatment, the malleable steel would be bent to it’s final form, then heated to a certain temperature and quenched in oil or water to impart the springiness.

From the photo above, cropped and enlarged to show the item in the woman’s right hand. To me it appears to be one of the clips in question but it is hard to tell for certain.


Here is the answer to this puzzle. On page 706 in the book “The M1 Garand Rifle”, by Bruce N.Canfield, there is a quote from the “Springfield Armory News” of August 1943:
“They are then sent to a bettery of Bliss Assembly Presses, where the spacers are assembled to the clips. The purpose of the spacer is to maintain the gauge dimension on the clips as they go through the hardening process. After hardening and tempering, the spacers are disassembled from the clip…”

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Enfield 0,303” chargers, made from similarly chunky steel to Garand ones were stamped and formed from mild steel sheet … then heat treated. Most things that are springy are made that way, spring steel is not malleable as it will try to revert to its previous shape and it can be brittle too.

Originally, the finished chargers were tempered in large pans over a gas flame, an expert eye being needed to judge when the colour of the heated steel was correct, before they were tipped into used oil to be quenched … this provided the black carboniferous finish that was then lightly oiled to prevent rust. The furnace in the picture is a level of sophistication that few British workshops could have aspired to.

During the First War most chargers were produced by the factories of the pen-nib trade in Birmingham, simply because they were already expert in close tolerance stamping and forming as well as the careful heat-treatment required to successfully produce steel pen-nibs in huge numbers.

Luckily the Enfield is not so choosy on precision for feeding and loading as the Garand … although anyone who’s tried rapid loading with a MkIII charger might beg to differ.