M1 Carbine Part 12: The infamous sling and sling oiler

In M1 Carbine Part 1, we took a look at the external condition of the new old CMP M1 Carbine.

In M1 Carbine Part 2, we disassembled the M1 Carbine into its major groups.

In M1 Carbine Part 3, we disassembled the Trigger Housing Assembly into its individual components.

In M1 Carbine Part 4, we disassembled the bolt without using the M1 Carbine Bolt Tool (don’t try this at home kiddies).

In M1 Carbine Part 5, we removed the components from the stock and receiver that were necessary to remove for inspection and discussed those items not removed.

In M1 Carbine Part 6, we examined the component markings and determined whether the parts are correct for the period and manufacturer.

In M1 Carbine Part 7, we reassembled the trigger housing group.

In M1 Carbine Part 8, we reassembled the bolt without the benefit of an M1 Carbine bolt tool.

In M1 Carbine Part 9, we reassembled the components removed from the stock and receiver.

In M1 Carbine Part 10, we disassembled the bolt using the M1 Carbine Bolt tool.

In M1 Carbine Part 11, we assembled the bolt using the M1 Carbine Bolt tool.

Update: I was installing the sling backward. The installation procedure remains the same; however, reverse the ends. The buckle end goes through the oiler and the button snap end attaches to the front mount. This prevents you from having to use the blunt object method of flattening the button snap tab to get it to fit through the oiler slot. I plead ignorance and lack of intelligence. Sorry for the confusion.

This is the final installment of this series on the new old M1 Carbine. In this edition, we’re going to install and remove the standard GI web sling and sling oiler.

The sling I purchased for my M1 Carbine is new production, not an original WWII GI piece. For that reason, I was not shy about “making it work”. I don’t know how my new production sling stacks up as far as size and shape of the tabs and clips etc. It was a very tight fit and so I did have to “modify” it to make it fit slightly better.

My stock is an “oval cut” versus “I cut”. I don’t believe that the sling and oiler installation would be any different, but I don’t know that for a a fact.

One side of the stock is cut with a slot for the oiler to fit into.

The other side has a “ramp” sling well cut into it.

The front sling mount is a standard rectangular ring attached to the barrel band.

An integral part of the sling mount is a dual purpose item called the “oiler”.

I purchased an original WWII era GI oiler to go with my rifle. This is simply a tube for gun oil to be carried in with a metal needle dripper attached to the cap.

When the cap is installed, it forms a simple metal cylinder.

To attach the rear of the sling, the first step is to insert the sling end through the slot in the stock.

To ensure you put it through the right way, hold the sling flat against the “ramp” cut in the stock with the end toward the butt. The locking pin that protrudes from the sling mounting tab should be pointing out away from the stock.

After the sling end has been passed through the slot in the stock, insert the oiler into the cut on side of the stock opposite the sling “ramp” cut. It may be a little tight but it will fit.

The wrap the sling end around the oiler and push the end back through the slot on the other….uh oh.

This is where I had issues. The mounting tab with the hole was too thick to pass through the slot in the stock after the oiler was installed. I tried some other methods of installation but no joy.

I ended up having to perform a highly technical and complicated “tab flattening” procedure.

I don’t know that I would have been so quick to pull out the old blunt instrument had this been a 60 year old WWII vintage sling, but with a cheap reproduction, I wasn’t overly concerned. After flattening the tab somewhat, I had to use a drill bit to ream the hole back out so that the locking pin would fit through it, but since then I have had no further problems with installing the sling.

Picking up where I left off before the emergency surgery break…wrap the sling end around the oiler and stuff the tab end back through the slot in the stock.

At that point, the oiler side should look something like this.

Back on the other side, push the locking pin through the hole in the locking tabs.


The front is a pretty self-explanatory. Make sure you insert the front end of the sling through the front sling ring so that the sling isn’t twisted.

Basically stick it through and thread it through the buckle. Nothing to it.

And there you have it.

Use the buckle on the front end of the sling to adjust the length.

Removal is basically the opposite of installation. The only thing of note is when removing the rear of the sling from the oiler.

You may have to hold the oiler in place while pushing the loose end through the slot.

The slot is cut at a slight angle. If the oiler tries to push out of the slot while the sling is being pushed out, it will pinch and bind the whole thing up. Holding the oiler in place while the end of the sling is being pushed out will make it a much smoother operation.

After pulling the end through the cut, remove the oiler, then pull the sling free of the stock.

That’s it. I hope you’ve gotten some useful information out of this series. If you have any questions, suggestions for topics that I may have missed or further information, feel free to comment or e-mail me using the contact me link in the sidebar.


10 thoughts on “M1 Carbine Part 12: The infamous sling and sling oiler

  1. I'm pretty sure you have the sling on backwards. The snap end goes toward the front of the rifle and the buckle end goes toward the butt. That way you don't have so much hassle feeding the thickness of the snap components between the wood and the oiler. My M1's are all rigged as I describe. Not because I figured it out, but because they were that way when I bought em. Removing the sling, using the oiler, and then replacing the sling takes literally a minute or less if slung as described. Hoep that helps.

  2. You don't put anything through the butt slot (no, that's not naughty) except a doubled loop of sling webbing, stick the oiler in that loop and pull it snug.

  3. Dude you don't have a clue! Wow the snap end goes through the oiler and then through the frount sling mount.
    Thanks for the laughs this is way to funny not to share with my Buds. I think it was Abraham Maslow who said "If the only tool you have is a hammer you'll treat everything like a nail.
    Really Dude you need to redo the sling install.

  4. I'm glad you got some enjoyment out of it anyway.

    Had you taken a moment to look, you may have found that I already figured out my mistake and corrected it…over three years ago and a matter of days after the initial post:

    M1 Carbine Sling Revisited

    I suppose I should have put a link to that post on this one, but I guess I figured anyone reading the series would have read on and encountered that post as well.

    BTW: I have always made it clear that I'm still learning and don't know everything about everything…I'm just one ignorant schmuck trying to learn more about the things that interest me and attempting to help others by sharing what I learn along the way.

    To which you reply with ridicule.

    Which, I might add, is an EXCELLENT way to encourage people to take an interest in gun ownership and gun rights. Thank you for being such a fine ambassador for the shooting community.

    "To speak ill of others is a dishonest way of praising ourselves."
    — Will Durant

    • Hey, don’t feel bad about installing the strap on your M1 Carbine backwards!! I did exactly the same thing myself just last week. LOL!!!
      I could tell right away that something was wrong, because it sure came apart a lot easier than it went back together. It was a real struggle!! The oiler wouldn’t settle back in correctly, and the strap got wedged into the slot. I thought I’d have to cut the strap off, but I finally got the strap loose with some strong tugging. Hopefully, I won’t repeat this mistake again. I’ll take a photo of everything before I try to disassemble anything on this Carbine again.

      I’m not sure when my M1 Carbine was produced, but I think it was around 1944-45. I have an “Inland Div.”model, with a serial number of 528056, and “Marlin” is stamped on the barrel. The magazine release has an “M” stamped on it, and the safety lever has what appears to be an “E” within a circle followed by an “I” just outside the circle stamped on one side of the lever, and another circle containing two stylized S’s within it, much like the WW2 German SS symbol stamped on the other side of the lever. The Carbine has a type 1 rear sight and the front sight is cast, but the two outer wings of the sight appear to be attached separately somehow to the central block in some way, as if welded on in some manner to the sight block. Most M1 Carbine front sights I have been researching are solid cast blocks with a central sight and the two wings all cast in one solid block.. It’s a puzzle. I’m hoping that you might be able to shed some insight regarding this front sight, and the other markings on the gun I described. Are they correct for my Carbine? I’ll look forward to hearing from you.

      William Hadfield

    • What is it about some people, rather than approach their fellow mankind with respect and optimism in hopes of learning something or sharing life’s experiences, knowledge, sorrows and possible even a laugh, they approach it with utter detest and ridicule. Well done you ole “Broken Down Sailor”

  5. Interesting reading. I just installed a sling. It's not as simple as some make it sound. This has always been (and always will be) a problem area with the M1 carbine. Witness all the nice old stocks which have been reamed out in the oiler area. Also, note the many surplus oilers on the market which have been "flattened". I think this was SOP with the Dutch army.

    • Hey, thanks Bruce, that’s some great info.

      I actually have a spare Garand sling laying around…I replaced the web sling on my Garand with a leather sling because I like them better for shooting matches.

      I’ve always thought the carbine sling is too difficult to adjust. Thanks for the tip.

  6. Well I found your description helpful. But through trial and error I discovered a trick that worked for me. Take the c end of the sling and put it into the large slanted area of the rifle stock first. Then install your oiler and hold it down. Now the C end of the sling seems to more easily fit through the gap in the stock. The c end seems to go in easily when going on this side because it is a straight shot. When you do it visa versa it seems that it is much harder to get the C end of the sling through the slanted portion of the stock because of the angle. By doing it the way described above the C end of the sling will end up outside of the buckle away from the stock. I realize many people go the other direction and have the c end of the sling under the buckle and on the side facing the stock.

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