Harris Bipod Installation
Installing a Harris Bipod on an M1A with a WhamoCamo or Synthetic Stock
This is what I imagine my rifle to look like in the field... with the Harris bipod installed and ready for action (less scope).
1. Make your rifle safe and insure that it is UNLOADED.
2. Disassemble rifle into the three main sections as indicated in M14/M1A manual.
3. With the stock upside down, put the Harris bipod just behind the existing sling swivel and insure that there is proper clearance and that the bipod is centered. With bipod in place (held with your hand or tape) look down the bipod fingers where they would secure to the sling stud. Mark position of where the sling stud will be installed with scribe, awl or pencil.
4. Optional, but you can insure that you are on a center line (or seam of synthetic stock) by using string or tape held from center of existing sling swivel to center of magazine well, or trigger assembly, whatever. Just make sure its centered.
5. Drill a pilot hole where you marked. Check the inside of stock to make sure you are on the center line or seam of stock.
6. Use a 5/16th inch drill bit to create the hole that the sling stud "nut" will be squeezed into. In this case, I used a Harris bipod #5 adapter that is usually used for installation on AR type weapons. I used that particular adapter because its exposed flange lies flat and has a very low profile. For mounting on a wood stock, I would use a #2R adapter. The exposed flange is curved to suit the wood profile and is somewhat low in side profile as well. A #2 can also be used for wood installed upside down if you already have one. If not, get a #2R for wood stocks.
7. After drilling the 5/16th inch hole, I lightly reamed the edges of the hole, only to get rid of the fiberglass burrs and whatnot. You will also notice that the thickness of the fiberglass is quite "meaty" in that area.
8. Install the Harris bipod #5 adapter flange and nut. It should fit like a tight glove.
9. Install the sling stud. I did not like the square washer that comes with the #5 adapter (to me it ruined the Whamo Camo profile) even though it would not be seen with the bipod installed. I used the round washer from the #2R adapter (you can get the same washer at any ACE hardware store).
This what it looked like from the outside (nice and clean, like it was meant to be there):
The inner flange and profile looked like (notice how low it sits, with no protrusion of the stud screw) this:
Yup, that is autographed by Mr. Rick Mack (aka SixTGunr).
With the stud installed you are actually, "Good to Go". NOTE: If you should ever decide to sell the rifle and you remove everything, it will appear as a second "weep hole" if you do it right. However, there are a few small things that I did that I thought you might find useful or helpful with Harris bipods.
1. I took the Harris bipod and measured the contact points.
2. I cut some old leather that I have (saved just for this because I don't like the metal of the bipod directly contacting the stock) and glued it to the contact area. I cut shaped the leather using plain scissors and a razor.
Normally, I would then take a felt pen, shoe polish or something like that and make the leather BLACK like the bipod. I left some original leather exposed to show you where the contact points are. I make the leather black so that when installed, the leather is absolutely invisible.
3. I installed a "Tanks" quick release knob, replacing the Harris bipod tensioning screw (making it easier to tighten or loosen in a hurry).
That's just about it on the installation procedure... If you take your time, it will turn out great and it will be worth it!
This is a close up of the Harris bipod installed.
There is absolutely NO Metal to stock contact, believe it or not! I did not want to mess up the great Whamo Camo stock that SixTGunr and Skratch made for me. Other profiles (hopefully they show the clearance). The leather also raised the bipod off the stock by a "smidgen" and that was sufficient to make the clearance for the bipod's foot locks (the round things).
This is what it looks like reassembled (sorry about my work area being such a mess, no time to setup a backdrop).
Disclaimer: Please accept this for what it is. I am not a professional gunsmith, woodworker, whatever, just a guy to likes to shoot and have beautiful rifles. I try to do as much as possible by myself because, most of the darn gun related talent is in the mainland (like SixTGunr, Skratch, Ricca, DGR Guns, etc.)!
I hope this helps and is written clear enough to follow. Any additional information or suggestions, that you might have can be directed to email@example.com.
Aloha, Good Luck and Best Wishes,
Acknowledgements: Whamo Camo (SixTGunr and Skratch) - Custom Camo Stocks. Without them, I would not have the energy or initiative to do this install, or to have made this web page. This procedure and pictures are dedicated to Whamo Camo. My humble thanks, respect and appreciation.
AMENDMENT TO PROCEDURE (10-16-2002)
As I learned more about the mechanical operations of the M14/M1A, I decided to review this procedure. I had found that there was metal contact between the Op Rod Guide and the Harris stud flange on the inside of the stock. The metal to metal contact might create excessive wear on the trigger assembly hooks and possibly affect the op rod alignment by binding the angle of the op rod and the gas cylinder. To correct this situation, I used a Dremel cutting tool and cut the stud flange to a smaller size (see picture). Next, I used the Dremel shaping tool to channel out the forearm where the Harris stud flange (cut) would fit.
I channeled only deep enough to insure clearance with my Op Rod Guide. When completed it would look something like the picture below. Fitting the upper assembly, there was not contact between the op rod guide and the flange. I confirmed this with greasing the op rod guide bottom and looked at the flange to see if there was any grease transferred to the flange. Happily, there was none.
The next step is to epoxy the entire area. Rough the entire area that will be epoxied. This will help with adhesion. Mix epoxy as instructed. Apply a small amount to the channeled out area and install the stud flange. Apply more epoxy to the sides and top of the stud flange and the surrounding area (1/4" around flange). Let cure as instructed on epoxy label and you should be done. A thin fiberglass material may be added for strength. The forearm should actually be stronger with the metal (and fiberglass material if added) epoxied in place. You may want to sand or Dremel sand the area for smoothness.
These are other angle shots...
Channel area beneath flange to make the flange level with the bottom of the stock. Insure that there is no contact between the flange and the op rod guide.
Channel area does not have to be exact... Epoxy will cement the gap areas and give it room to bind.
Don't forget to "rough" the area before applying the epoxy.
Should feel solid as a rock when curing is completed.
Almost floor level of the stock. Dremel sand to smooth epoxy.
NOTE: This will make the installation PERMANENT! And this entire process is not recommended for those who are not familiar with working with the tools described in this procedure. Careful planning and execution should give you a great product. As strong or stronger than the original.
Have Fun!!! I did.
A.R.M.S. #18 Scope Mount
The ARMS #18 Scope Mount is everything you have heard on BR.COM's forum. It fits like a glove, is three point contact on the receiver, is "non-snagging" and it appears to be a part of the receiver. See for yourself.