Greetings all. Let me first confess that I am a milsurp junkie. Wow, that was easy. Despite my long term affliction, my only hands-on experience with vintage semis is with a couple of M1 Garands. Let me add, that has been nothing but great. The M1 remains to this day, a true rifleman's rifle. I love'em.
However, variety is the spice of life. I'm interested in first hand accounts of other classic battle rifles. SVT40. Hakim. FN49. MAS49/56. You all get the idea. So let's hear those rants and raves about the "others".
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August 13, 2007, 09:52 PM
SKS I had a Yugo SKS 59/66 and that thing was perfectly reliable. Well made compared to the Chinese ones I've seen, mine actually shot very well with the Federal American Eagle ammo (best was a 1.5" group at 100 yards!). But I also had a slamfire with that ammo (due to the combination of a very dirty firing pin channel and the soft commerical primer of the AE ammo) so I quit using it. With the then cheap and plentiful Wolf ammo (which, really, was a big reason I bought the gun) it was all over the place, getting about 6-7 MOA. The trigger was horrible as well, but darned if it wasn't a reliable gun.
SVT-40 Had this one briefly as well. Reminded me of an SKS on steroids (of course, it came before the SKS) but my particular example had a dark and pitted barrel. The best I could get was a 2" group at 50 yards, and a buddy matched, but did not beat that group. Didn't shoot it for groups at 100 yards. Considering it is a pretty long rifle, it actually balanced fairly well and felt light for its length. I later got a chance to shoot a couple of them with shiny barrels and terrorized a few bowling pins at 100 yards. Recommended if you can find one with a good barrel.
FN-49 Shot an Eygptian one in 8mm Mauser. It lived up to the reputation of a nice, Old World Battlerifle. Very cool and fun to shoot. After the M1 Garand, I like this one the best of all the C&R semi-autos I've been lucky enough to own or otherwise shoot. (Haven't shot the Hakim, Swedish AG-42, German G-43, French MAS 49/56, or US M1941 Johnson)
US M1 Carbine It's a fun little toy and a nice plinker out to 100 yards. Planning on getting one from the CMP soon.
August 13, 2007, 10:59 PM
AG42 Ljungman is high on my list of wants, semi-auto Swede in 6,5x55 :)
August 13, 2007, 11:08 PM
I've lusted for a Ljungmann for years. Gewehr98 has a superb one. I'd love to get my hands on a Dutch FN49 in 30-.06. Johnsons are also nice, although they do tend to string the shots vertically.
August 13, 2007, 11:11 PM
id kill for an SVT in good condition. it is. the epitamy of commie sexiness to me
Well, I don't have a C&R license, but I do have plenty of Surplus or "replica" semiautos.
SVT-40. The worst thing about them is how quickly thay are going up in price. I happened to get a refurb that has a correct scope on a Moison Nagant mount. It was about $700 at the time and I was lucky to get it. They are a bear to disassemble, but the gas system is quite easy to remove and clean, so don't let a fear of corrosive ammunition prevent you from getting one. I have discovered recently, that I do need to puick up a gas adjustment tool, as mine had begun to not function well with the most plentiful ammunition that I stock.
MAS 49/56. Mine is in 308, but if I hadn't heard about problems with 308 converted rifles, I wouldn't have believed it. Mine is very reliable even with the worst of ammunition. The sights are a bit odd, but it is a very handy size rifle. Mine also has a beautiful walnut stock.
Ljungman AG-42. A really nice and beautiful rifle in 6.5 x 55 Swiss. I really got mine at a really great price. Besides a deep scratch on the butt, it is in very good shape. These rifles will trash brass, but they shoot so nice. With a muzzle brake built into the barrel and being a semiautomatic they have a very mild recoil for the power of the cartridge.
Hakim. I just got one recently. It has parts missing, so I haven't fired it yet. Very close to the Ljungman, but usualy cheaper and less rare.
Argentine Navy FN-49. This one is specifically special because it was made in 308, and has 20 round removable magazines. Examine the magazines and you will see the similarities between it and the magazines of the FAL.
M-1A It's a bit later and it is a replica rifle, yet it is a surplus rifle, especially those with milspec parts.
ROMAK III This is also a late rifle, but it was a military rifle and it fires one of the oldest calibers. I primarily bought one because of the cheap ammunition. It is a reliable rifle and is fairly accurate. I also bought one because I missed out on the Druganovs when they were legal to be imported into the country.
SKS A Russian model is the most desirable. I also have some Chinese rifles and enjoy them very much.
I also don't have one but would like a BM-59, a Berreta made Garand converted to take a removable magazine. It looks alot like an M-14.
August 14, 2007, 12:43 PM
Dr. Peter Venkman
August 14, 2007, 01:19 PM
SVT-40: An absolutely great rifle that is both fun and pleasant to shoot. 7.62x54R coming out of this thing feels like nothing. Mine is a 1941 Izvhesk refurb with stamped and electro-penciled matching. Beautiful stock and a pristine bore. Very good groups at 100 yards and will hit the gong every time if I do my faire share. It also has the sniper rails, so that is something I might look into.