New SA58 Para FAL -- first impressions and pics


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iamkris
July 17, 2007, 11:00 PM
As I mentioned in a previous thread, my DSA SA58 Para FAL was delivered late last week after 20 weeks on order. I filled out the paperwork over the weekend and picked up the rifle today. http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=288159&highlight=sa58+para

I'm always excited by a new toy and this one especially, as its brother, my DSA StG58A, is my go-to rifle...even over my M1A, PTR91 or AR15s. This one hs the potential to be my undisputed champion, go anywhere, do anything rifle. Here's a first few pics.

http://i14.tinypic.com/6c8loqe.jpg
http://i7.tinypic.com/4zxxawg.jpg

In addition to the standard stuff, I ordered these upgrades to the rifle:

SAW grip
Extended safety selector
Handguard rail
Phantom flash hider
Extended bolt hold open
Extended mag release
Sand-cut bolt carrier
Para tactical aperature sight
Extended Extreme Duty scope mount
EoTech 511


First impressions:

Dang, but this thing is handy. While it isn't really much shorter than other full size rifles I have, the weight distribution is all in the center making it FEEL more compact
All controls are extremely crisp in function
The trigger is the nicest I've ever seen on a FAL. Fairly light, crisp let off. There is a fair amount of travel and creep in the first stage...overall much better than I expected.
The build quality is typical DSA...flawless machining and finishing
The Extreme Duty scope mount is very nice...good build, clear T markings...a high quality piece and seems rock solid
The font Beligian style handguards are a little cheaper in material than I thought...they have a gap at the top
The handguard rail was a bit of a disappointment since it cost $25...I could get the same thing for less than $10 from CDNN
FALs are beautiful EBRs


Ever wonder how big some of these rifles are in comparison to one another? Here's some size comparisons to a standard sized StG58A, an M1A, a PTR91 with a collapsible stock, a folding stock AK and an M4-gery. The Para compares very well in size...and it's an FAL so it is superior :D

http://i13.tinypic.com/4ullpva.jpg

http://i12.tinypic.com/6c5uz52.jpg

http://i16.tinypic.com/6gl6hs7.jpg

http://i8.tinypic.com/4vfizuu.jpg

http://i19.tinypic.com/680xppe.jpg

Hopefully I'll get out to shoot it this weekend...range report to follow

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camslam
July 18, 2007, 12:27 AM
Sweet gun and sweet guns. I'll be getting a DSA FAL SA58 later this year and I am stoked. I'm still trying to decide between the full size or carbine, but I think I'll come out a winner either way.

Give us the follow up after taking it to the range.

cameron.personal
July 18, 2007, 01:37 AM
Great post, awesome looking FAL!

I am very interested to read how it shoots, especially in regard to zeroing.

Here is mine...

http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m198/2007cam/HisandHers01.jpg

Cameron

JonB
July 18, 2007, 09:25 AM
Love those FAL's. I really need to get one of those. Nice looking rifles gentlemen.

iamkris
July 18, 2007, 11:47 AM
cameron.personal

What kind of scope is that? I have the EoTech on it now but the idea of a little bit of magnification when needed for longer range is appealing, while still retaining the dot for close up work. I've seen good stuff about the IOR scopes but they are quite spendy ($850-1200+). One of the decent-looking alternatives (if you don't need the CQB rangefinding recticle) is this Burris which runs around $500

1-4 x 24mm Black Diamond

http://www.burrisoptics.com/images/euro1x4x.gif

3P#4 Illuminated recticle (I like this one)

http://www.burrisoptics.com/images/3p4illum.gif

3P#4 E-Dot (also nice)

http://www.burrisoptics.com/images/edot.gif

jagdpanzer347
July 18, 2007, 11:53 AM
Congrats on a fine rifle and a fine collection, Kris. I know my DSA STG58C was well worth the wait. For my next project I'm looking to put together an Izzy-inspired light barrel. At some point I surely would like to get a Para, and a G1 and......... man, those FALs can be addictive. Enjoy your new rifle and happy shooting.

-jagd

cameron.personal
July 18, 2007, 12:01 PM
I have the IOR Valdada (from DSA for $695) 1.1-4 x 26 with the illuminated CQB reticle.
This reticle is similar in design to the ACOG allowing (at 4x) range finding and BDC out to 800 meters.

Here is the reticle...
http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m198/2007cam/ior_illum_cqb_popup.jpg

A buddy and I got one each for my FAL and his middy AR and they are awesome scopes for the price, a friend has they more expensive Leupold SPR 1.5-5 and I think the IOR is a great value in comparison.

http://www.valdada.com/vn/ior/03k Just be aware that Valdada's website sucks and doesn't show the correct reticle options.

Here it is on DSA's site http://www.dsarms.com/prodinfo.asp?number=VT11426CQB

http://www.dsarms.com/images/VT11426CQB.gif

So far I am VERY HAPPY with the scope.
Cameron

iamkris
July 18, 2007, 01:15 PM
I have the IOR Valdada (from DSA for $695)

Wow! DSA is selling them for less (by about $150) than SWFA...that puts the IOR back in the running. I really liked that scope but couldn't see dropping that kind of coin...still, $700 for a scope is WAY mre than I've paid in the past. What is the rangefinding recticle calibated to? Are those holdover bars?

Some more impressions now that I've played with it overnight

I was originally going to put a vertical grip on this...I don't think I will. Something about the weight distribution says that this rifle needs to be handled in a traditional manner on the forearm.
Based on that, I'm going to move the rail up to the side to mount a weapons light. Hopefully that will solve the "gap" at the seam of the top of the handguards
The folding stock is AWESOME...rock solid.
The cheeckweld with the folding stock for iron sights is excellent. I'm adding a ITC cheeckpiece to get the proper weld with the EoTech
FALs are beautiful EBRs

El Tejon
July 18, 2007, 01:35 PM
Nice weapon, nieghbor. Buy them cheap and stack them deep.:)

Gunfixr
July 18, 2007, 01:40 PM
I have a vertical grip on my shorty and like it, but it's personal preference. However, that rail looks awful far forward for a grip, you'd have to have gorilla arms to reach the grip.

Coronach
July 18, 2007, 01:46 PM
How fast is it for CQB use? The IOR scope, I mean.

Mike

BigSoundRacing
July 18, 2007, 01:53 PM
Cameron,

Thanks for the suggestion on the scope - been trying to decide what to place on the FAL and that really looks nice.

Ordered my second from DSA yesterday.

Be safe, BSR

10-Ring
July 18, 2007, 02:10 PM
I've only had the opportunity to shoot a couple FALs, but from those experiences, I'm sure you'll enjoy this new addition! Congrats & I look forward to seeing pics from you first range session.

cameron.personal
July 18, 2007, 09:14 PM
How fast is it for CQB use? The IOR scope, I mean.

Mike

Very, the horseshoe reticle is great.

DMK
July 18, 2007, 09:29 PM
Beautiful rifle iamkris. Best of luck with it.

Good choices on the options. I have a bunch of those parts on my FAL too.

Is that a 16" or 18" barrel?

Dang, but this thing is handy. While it isn't really much shorter than other full size rifles I have, the weight distribution is all in the center making it FEEL more compactThat DSA alloy lower makes a huge difference with a shortened barrel. I added one to my 17", changing over from a full stock on a surplus Imbel lower. The difference in feel and balance was night and day.

iamkris
July 18, 2007, 10:55 PM
Beautiful rifle iamkris. Best of luck with it.....Is that a 16" or 18" barrel?

Thankee. It's a 16"

Well, I was going to cut out and break it in on Friday afternoon but a vendor just called and gave me 4 tickets, 10 rows up, just behind home plate for the Cubs game on Friday afternoon. I'm taking my kids.

I'll shoot it this weekend.

Hutch
July 19, 2007, 05:25 PM
What is that rear sight? I'd like to get one. Does it replace the orignal rear w/o 'smithing, or does it require alteration?

DMK
July 19, 2007, 09:38 PM
What is that rear sight? I'd like to get one. Does it replace the orignal rear w/o 'smithing, or does it require alteration?
Para tactical aperature sight

It will replace the original sight. There were lots of variations of the FAL though. You may need to swap your front sight post with one of a different height.

http://www.dsarms.com/images/DSA110.JPG (http://www.dsarms.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DSA110)
http://www.dsarms.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DSA110

FN/form
August 4, 2007, 11:11 PM
For CQB rifles I'd recommend something you can mount well forward. CQB by definition necessitates a wide field of view. Looking down a tube close to your eye is a detriment. Magnification can be a CQB detriment, as well.

Think EOTech and Aimpoint.

Extended range--well, the definition of that is up to you. Just make sure thick reticle lines (meant for faster acquisition) don't obscure hold-over view.


-josh

cameron.personal
August 5, 2007, 01:26 AM
I was just running drills today with my DSA and the 1.1-4 IOR mentioned above. With both eyes open the field of view is great and the time on splits is excellent. I ran a drill with a 14.5" M4 type with a forward mounted EOTech and then the 16.25" FAL type with the IOR variable power scope. With the CQB horeshoe reticle the FAL was just as fast as the EOTech.

When I moved the the 100 yards line and dialed in the 4 power the FAL makes the M4 look like a toy.... I good mid range variable power optic makes a lot of sense on a .308 carbine sized rifle.

Cameron

RockyMtnTactical
August 5, 2007, 01:37 AM
Very nice. I have a soft spot in my heart for FAL's... I am contemplating building another one...

cameron.personal
August 5, 2007, 01:42 AM
I can't resist I took a couple of pics after the range session today...


http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m198/2007cam/Camo/SA58withIORGrassL.jpg

Grayrider
August 5, 2007, 11:44 AM
Kris,

Glad to hear you got your SA58, and thank you for the great review! I think the size comparison pictures really illustrate how handy the SA58 carbine is in comparison to other rifles. That combined with the soft recoil of the FAL makes for a battle rifle that can easily cover the role of a carbine in 5.56 or 7.62x39.

When you go to the range remember that we do suggest 400-500 round break-in, although in my experience that mainly applies to Duracoated guns. Oil the heck out of it too as I have seen a few ship pretty dry. The gun I got after the NRA Convention where we met was bone dry. I oiled the heck out of it and never had to really break it in as there were no malfunctions out of the box. My Para took about 200-300 rounds to shake down fully, and again was Duracoated.

Please get in touch if I can be of further assistance, and let us know how it shoots!

John

PS: I just setup an ORF AK-74 in almost an identical configuration to the AK you posted above. Great minds think alike!

iamkris
August 5, 2007, 03:45 PM
Thanks John.

I've had her out...really lubed up too...I noticed how dry it was when shipped. I'm still a fan of this rifle although I've only had it out for a sight-in session. Here's my range report. http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=292567&highlight=sa58+para

I've also added a few things...now she looks like this

Israeli forward assist charging handle (might as well put that sand cut bolt carrier to good use)
GG&G Accucam QD mount for the EoTech
ITC cheekrest
Viking weapons light mount
Surefire G2 torch


http://i12.tinypic.com/4zsw0w2.jpg


Accuracy seems decent but I've only had it out to 50 for sighting in purposes...haven't wrung her out at 100/200 yet. The elevation difference is my monkeying around with the front sight setting. That's SA surplus.

http://i17.tinypic.com/4lgm7a0.jpg

Trying to figure out how to attach this to my signature

http://i17.tinypic.com/505e7bk.jpg

Grayrider
August 5, 2007, 04:23 PM
That just about sums it up. I am down to one AR now...

:)

Of course I won't mention my 5.56 AKs....

John

SpeedAKL
August 5, 2007, 07:41 PM
Multiple awesomeness kudos to your purchase and to the pics in this thread.

If you enjoyed reading about "New SA58 Para FAL -- first impressions and pics" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!