The Best M1A Stocks for Big Bore Precision and Tactical Shooting

Last Updated on November 5, 2021.

The M1A is a tremendous rifle. It’s remarkably precise. And it’s quite viable as a larger caliber tactical rifle. The M1A can do it all, more or less.

What’s more, the M1A is reasonably customizable. It might not be quite as modular as an AR-15. But you can fine tune your M1A pretty well by simply changing the chassis. And the stock you choose forms the basis of further upgrades and customization.

In light of how important your M1A stock is, it makes sense to get the best M1A stock you can find.

But which is the best stock? I’ll do my best to help you figure that out.

I’ve put together a short list of the best M1A stocks I’ve encountered. Sadly, I don’t own these stocks. But I’ve had the opportunity to test drive them.

And this is what I discovered in my time behind these stocks.

Top Best M1A Stocks on the Market Today

Our Best Choice

ProMag Archangel M1A Precision Stock

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  • Carbon fiber reinforced polymer is just as strong as a wooden stock, but lighter.
  • Finely adjustable cheek riser height and length of pull.
  • Precision fit inlet to maximize organic precision.

SPOILER—the M1A stock options are somewhat limited. But the ProMag Archangel M1A Precision Stock is easily the best M1A stockIt’s a solid chassis that offers good tactical utility, precision performance, and customization potential. There simply aren’t any other stocks that offer such good performance and upgradeability.

If you’d like to check out all the other options, we’ve found them and put them all together in one handy article. Keep reading to learn about all the best M1A stocks.

The 5 best M1A stock reviews: Modernizing a classic

If I were to build out an M1A, these are the stocks I’d look at first.

1. ProMag Archangel M1A Precision Stock

Overall Best M1A Stock

I’m not always a fan of ProMag hardware. But the ProMag Archangel M1A Precision Stock is well-designed. And it’s one of the most affordable M1A stocks on the market.

The big selling point of this stock is the adjustability. The length of pull and comb height adjustment are a great improvement over a factory wooden stock.

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Being able to adjust the stock to your body makes it much easier to sit behind the gun in a stable shooting position for a long time without getting too sore or fatigued.

The deep thumb notch is also much more comfortable than a standard rifle stock. The thumb notch is deep enough to mimic a pistol grip. And you can position your hand a bit lower, which puts your elbow and shoulder joint in a more comfortable position.

Lastly, this stock is lighter than most hardwood stocks, because it’s polymer. Not a whole lot lighter. But if you’re packing your rifle around, you’ll appreciate the weight savings.

Ultimately, if you have a full-length M1A, this stock is easily the best option as it makes holding traditional long-range shooting positions much more comfortable. And the adjustability definitely makes it easier to maximize your precision shooting skill. 

2. Boyds Hardwood Gunstocks Springfield M1A Style 1 Stock

Budget M1A Stock

It’s not uncommon to find old M1A rifles that are affordable because they need a bit of work. Often, the barrel and action are in good shape. But the stock needs a little work… Or replacement.

If you’ve got a rifle that needs a little refurbishing—but you don’t want a super cool aftermarket stock—the Boyds Hardwood Gunstocks Springfield M1A Style Stock is a great option. It’s traditional and affordable.

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Essentially, this is a standard walnut M1A stock. It retains the classic look and ergonomics of your M1A.

That may not be the most comfortable thing ever. You might get some cheek soreness. And there’s certainly more felt recoil than you’d get from a more high tech stock. 

But, when it comes to the M1A, there’s a lot to be said for the classic aesthetic. And, if you add a rubber butt pad, you can get a bit more comfort than you’d get from a metal butt plate, which is common on classic military stocks.

Also, that brings up a key fact about this stock: it does not come with a butt plate. That’s nice because it offers some customizability. But it’s kind of inconvenient for those who just want a plug and play stock.

If you’re into the classic M1A design, this stock is the most affordable option. And the traditional looks are nice. It’s also a good budget M1A stock, if you’re keeping costs down.

3. ProMag Archangel M1A Close Quarters Stock

Tactical M1A Stock

The ProMag Archangel M1A Close Quarters Stock is designed to make the backend of an M1A rifle feel more like an AR-15. And it does pretty well on that front. But it’s not quite a perfect design.

First, this stock trades out the traditional rifle stock for a collapsible AR-15 type stock. It works and feels like a Magpul stock. And it has a raised cheek piece.

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The cheek piece is really nice if you have a magnified optic. It makes it much easier to keep your reticle stable, especially in less stable shooting positions.

Additionally, the pistol grip is comfortable for both upright and prone shooting positions. However, for me, the pistol grip felt a little awkward when I used a precision shooting grip.

It’s not terrible. But I think the palm swell feels a little out of place when your thumb is not wrapped around the grip.

But the people who own this stock really like it. It might just be that my body type doesn’t fit this stock all that well.

And the point of this stock is to make your M1A better for CQB. For that purpose, it works well. From standing and kneeling positions, this stock is solid.

If you have a shorter M1A, like an M1A Scout, with an optic, a tactical M1A stock like this one is a good choice. But I think the ProMag Archangel Precision stock is a better choice if you do more long range shooting than CQB.

4. Springfield Armory M14 Stock

Value M1A Stock

If you want a truly classic M1A, the Springfield Armory M14 Stock is pretty much the only way to go. It’s the original M14 stock design. But it fits an M1A.

It comes complete with the metal butt plate with a storage compartment. And it has traditional sling swivels. It also has the traditional M14 wooden finish.

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Just like other wood M1A stocks, this stock does offer a whole lot in terms of shooting comfort or recoil reduction. It offers classic comfort, you might say.

If you’re accustomed to a traditional stock, this won’t be a compromise for you. But this stock is definitely geared toward people who want a rifle that want a classic look or M14 clone builders.

5. Vltor M1-S: M1A Improved Stock System

Tactical M1A Stock

If you have an M1A Scout or want a more tactically focused M1A, the Vltor M1-S: M1A Improved Stock System is the way to go. It’s the most complete tactical M1A stock.

The pistol grip and buttstock are top notch. And it adds sling attachment points to make it easier to use more modern sling configurations.

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On an AR-15, I prefer a more vertical pistol grip angle. However, the ergonomics of the M1A work better with a slightly steeper grip angle, for me at least. And the grip angle on this stock is a bit steeper, which is appropriate for an M1A.

Then, this stock comes with a VLTOR EMOD Buttstock. As far as collapsible stocks go, it’s one of the best. It has a bunch of storage options. The cheek piece is comfortable and helps get a stable sight picture with optics. And the rubber recoil pad is thick enough to absorb some of the .308 round.

The VLTOR M1-S is probably the most comfortable tactical M1A stock that I tried. And it’s decent enough for long range shooting, for those who want to retain the versatility of their rifle.

Update your M1A

The M1A is a magnificent battle rifle. It might be aging a bit these days. But it’s still a very capable rifle. And it’s remarkably precise for a semi-automatic rifle. So fitting it with the best M1A stock possible can get you a ton of performance, without modifying the action or barrel.

Now that you know what’s up, it’s time to upgrade your M1A and make the most of your legendary battle rifle.