Decided I need a FAL


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JonB
August 14, 2007, 04:45 PM
I haven't ever really looked into these before other than to drool over some of the pics THR members post from time to time.

So where do I start? I believe Metric is the way to go. Easier to build one from a parts kits or buy a finished DSA STG58?

I found www.Entreprise.com has a lot of parts. If I read things right I can buy a receiver for around 300, then a parts kit for another 350 and have everything I need. Correct?

What kind of receiver - Type 1, 2, 3, Israeli match? What's the difference? Or Imbel receiver and Imbel Brazillian parts kit?

Any pointers from the FAL guys out there to get me started would be appreciated.

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Limeyfellow
August 14, 2007, 04:55 PM
Metric is easier to get parts for. However Imperial measured Fals can take imperial or metric magazines, and metric fals can't. Since theres loads of imperial measured magazines thats something to look into.

DSA STG58s are well worth looking into. Awesome quality. The century ones are hit or miss.

Never made up my own from a parts kit though.

AndyC
August 14, 2007, 04:56 PM
It's cheaper to buy a finished FAL (assuming it's both legal and reliable) than to start with a kit - but you'd learn more by building it ;)

Metric parts are definitely easier (and cheaper) to come by.

If you're going to buy a kit, you'd also need an upper receiver, correct - but you'll also need 6 or 7 922r compliance parts to make her legal (7 if the kit has a muzzle-device)

Entreprise hasn't had much good press for the past few years - that's all I'ma say 'bout that (look at DSA receivers over at dsarms.com instead)

The type of receiver really doesn't matter - only the cognoscenti would really know the difference (and most of them wouldn't care anyway)

Father Knows Best
August 14, 2007, 05:24 PM
Check out falfiles.com for all things related to the FAL, and be sure to read the forums. There is a long-running thread about Entreprise. Apparently, a lot of guys ordered those receivers a long time ago, and sent their money. Entreprise charged their credit cards, cashed their checks, etc., ... but still haven't gotten their receivers. When they call, Entreprise makes excuses about problems with vendors, and says it will be another few weeks. Most of them are pretty PO'ed about it, especially since Entreprise continues to run ads saying they have receivers in stock for "immediate shipment."

David Salvaggio Arms, aka DSA, is another story altogether. DSA is a reliable, high class outfit with excellent quality and excellent customer service. Check out www.dsarms.com.

And congrats. I have a FAL and I love it. Mine is a DSA SA58 Para carbine.

JonB
August 14, 2007, 05:29 PM
Thanks for the heads up on Entreprise. DSA has some nice looking stuff no doubt! So what's the difference between the STG58's and the SA58's? STG's are from Austria?

AndyC
August 14, 2007, 05:30 PM
Yup - made by Steyr

iamkris
August 14, 2007, 05:36 PM
StGs are a legacy from how DSA got into the business. When they decided to add FAL parts to their growing AR parts buisness, they found that Styer was selling their warehouse full. Styer also offered them the blueprints and machinery...thus DSA got into the rifle manufacturing (vs just parts) buisness.

The StGs have been built using these parts, with the sxception of the receiver and a few other 922a parts. As they've run out of parts (like recently barrels I think) they've added US made ones. The SA58 is essentially all new manufactured parts rifle.

I have one of each

Father Knows Best
August 14, 2007, 05:41 PM
What iamkris said. The StG58 and SA58 both have U.S.-made (by DSA) upper receivers. The difference is in the rest of the parts. The StG58 uses a steel Austrian lower receiver, and as many other surplus parts as DSA can use (both in terms of availability and legality). The SA58 uses a new U.S.-made alloy lower receiver, new U.S. barrel, new furniture, etc.

Both are excellent, high quality rifles. Both work just fine.

JonB
August 14, 2007, 05:42 PM
Since you have both - Any pros/cons with either Kris? Same quality? Price on the STG seems to be a bit lower....


Also, I assume the DSA website is high on pricing. Looking at gunbroker I see FAL's going for 850 and up. What would be a reasonable gunshop price for a STG FAL?

Father Knows Best
August 14, 2007, 06:17 PM
I don't have both, but I've shot both. As far as I can tell, the StG is every bit as high quality as the SA. The SA will generally be a bit lighter, but it still won't be a lightweight.

Another good choice is a FAL built on an Imbel (Brazilian) receiver. The trick there is knowing who built it. If it was built well, it is every bit as good as an StG58.

Prices on new DSA guns having definitely gone through the roof in the last few years, and waits can be long. Used prices have been climbing, too, but you can still find good used Imbels or StG58's for $850-1000 if you shop around.

FWIW, there's a SA58 Para Congo listed in the THR classifieds right now for $1500. That's a very good price on an excellent weapon -- probably the best FAL in terms of both maker (DSA) and configuration (18" barrel with folding stock).

.45&TKD
August 14, 2007, 07:04 PM
Buy a finished DSA STG58.

A real bargain now that they come with new barrels at the same price.

MIL-DOT
August 14, 2007, 07:13 PM
heck, i decided YEARS ago that i needed an FAL !! now i need to "decide" how i'm gonna get the bucks for one !

iamkris
August 14, 2007, 07:53 PM
As mentioned, both the DSA StG58A and SA58 are high quality. StGs are made from new-old stock materials...the SA58's are all new parts and come with a longer warranty. I wouldn't say that one is better than the other quality wise. SA58 comes in more variations.

I have both. I like both. If you are going for something fairly "standard", get the StG.

http://i14.tinypic.com/6c8loqe.jpg

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

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

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

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

silverlance
August 14, 2007, 09:14 PM
I am personally acquainted with the owners of entreprise, although I don't get any favors from them (I've never asked) other than answers to gunsmithing questions.

I have seen their products, both unfinished and jagged (I cut myself a little bit on an unfinished receiver) and bead blasted and heat treated.

I own 3 of their FALS; 2 were built by them and 1 was built by a gunsmith.

There is NOTHING wrong with EAI receivers structurally. The reason why gunsmiths may refuse to work on EAI receivers is not because they are unsafe, etc, but because they require more time to build than DSA or FULTON because sometimes they require a bit of fitting. You should know that it takes an expert smith about 20 minutes to build an entire FAL from parts to finish, including barreling and headspacing. I have seen it done.

Because it may take some fitting, smiths who do not know EAI receivers well may spend an hour working on a single rifle. They cannot charge by the hour for building work, so they simply refuse to work on them.

Personally, I suggest that if you are not willing to make the time commitment to build an EAI (or DSA for that matter) - and if it is your first job it will take hours - simply buy one already built.

EAI's STG-58 FAL rifles are built off of either austrian kits or imbel kits, both of which are of high quality. And, at less than 800.00 or so, they are much more affordable than DSA 1600 safe trophies.

my accuracy with my 3 fals is excellent. i shoot offhand exclusively, so i can't do grouping, but i can hit metal plates at 100 meters easily with it using sa ball.

kev

AndyC
August 14, 2007, 09:40 PM
Silverlance, the following is not aimed at you - but I would recommend anyone looking at an FAL review the following:

http://www.arizonaresponsesystems.com/notes/falent1/pagefalent1.htm

http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=80067

Personally, I would buy a Century before dealing with the clowns at Entreprise.

Slvr Surfr
August 14, 2007, 09:43 PM
Go for the DSA pre built rifles, you cant go wrong.

http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e341/helas_9/FN%20FAL/DSCF0880.jpg

iamkris
August 14, 2007, 09:44 PM
DSA 1600 safe trophies

Geez, I better start treating my DSA's differently. They go with me to the range pretty much every time I go. I need to start leaving them in the safe more often.

wccr
August 14, 2007, 10:04 PM
If you arent going to build than get a DSA, otherwise go Imbel and learn how fun building an FAL can be!

W.E.G.
August 15, 2007, 01:24 AM
In the current market, the only reason to build a FAL yourself is the fun of getting to do it yourself. The price of parts kits and receivers, plus whatever tools you will need to buy will put you at no financial advantage over a pre-built rifle.

DSA makes the best FAL's, and they have good warranty service.
Entreprise is OK, but not as good as DSA. Entreprise has good warranty service too. Entreprise's biggest problem has been proper location of the ejector block. I have two Entreprise rifles that run pretty well, except for the ejector blocks - neither of which is positioned perfectly.

The FAL is a fine rifle. Few are tack-drivers. About 3 MOA is the norm.

JonB
August 15, 2007, 09:03 AM
One more question - Type 1 or Type 2 receiver - what's the difference? Is one more 'desirable' than the other?

iamkris
August 15, 2007, 10:39 AM
Type 1 and Type 2 both have "lightening cuts" as compared to Type 3 (but were obviously more expensive to manufacture). I believe (unless someone can correct) that Type 2 added the radiuses to corrrect for the small instances of cracking at stress risers (e.g., corners, sharp edges) that Type 1 sometimes expereinced with prolonged usage in full auto fire.

In the kind of shooting that 99.9999999% of us do, all Types will be fully up to the task. I prefer Type 1 aesthetically.

Here's a reference from FALfiles...the mecca of all things FAL
http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=101100

http://www.dsarms.com/images/0291CHC.gif

http://www.dsarms.com/images/0292CHC.gif

cameron.personal
August 15, 2007, 11:20 AM
Take a long hard look at the DSA SA58 rifles. These are the best manufactured FAL type rifles ever made. Machined to the original blueprint specs and using the latest and best materials you cannot get a better quality FAL anywhere. While any quality FAL type is an excellent rifle the DSA SA58s are IMHO the top of the list. I purchased an SA58TACP (http://www.dsarms.com/prodinfo.asp?number=SA58TACP) this rifle has an alloy lower, fluted bbl, and the shortened gas system reducing weight and improving balance over the original design. The quality of this rifle is excellent. The barrels are over kill on a battle rifle and are essentially chrome moly custom target barrels produced by Badger, hand lapped with 11 degree target crowns. You cannot find mil spec produced FALs that can compete with the quality of these components. I have 3 L1A1s made by Lithgow in Australia, and I have shot and inspected Belgium FN FALs, and none of them come close to the DSA.

While the STG58 with unused Austrian surplus parts would be a great rifle I personally paid the incremental difference for the SA58.

Really what you have to consider is the configuration you want:
Barrel length => I went with a 16.25" fluted
Gas system length => Short for me on a short barrel to save weight
Sight configuration => I went with a Hampton Lower and A2 rear sight (making hits on a 12x16" gong at 500yards with iron sights showed the value of this setup)
Para or standard stock => I went with a PARA and switched the stock for a Magpul makes a battle rifle able to fit in a tennis bag...

So with a 16" lightweight SA58 you have a rifle as fast as an AR or AK at close range, but capable of accurate and effective fire out to 600 yards.
http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m198/2007cam/DSASA58ParaTacCarbineIORScope01.jpg

http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m198/2007cam/DSASA58ParaTacCarbineIORScope02.jpg

100 yard target 4 hole 5 shot target, I pulled the low left round....:( This rifle consistently is 1-2MOA with most groups below 1.5"

http://i104.photobucket.com/albums/m198/2007cam/DSA%20Para/DSASA585shots100yardssmall.jpg

Cameron

silverlance
August 15, 2007, 11:46 AM
I agree that DSA and FULTON make the best FALs on the market. absolutely. That said, Entreprise FALs are not bad, and they WILL service your rifle if it isn't right - provided that they did the build. I don't know about ejector block problems. I don't seem to have it on mine as all my rifles eject well. If W.E.G. would elaborate I could probably learn something from him.

You can except 3-6 MOA on an Entreprise build.
You can expect 2-3 MOA on a DSA build.

I own examples of both. 3 Entreprise - Imbel, STG Austrian, Carbine. 1 DSA.

Certainly, there are things said on Falfiles about Entreprise. That said, if you actually read the thread, you will notice that by far the thread is dominated by Gunplumber and one or two other smiths. Indeed, the threads are mainly about members rattling their sabers and entreprise (admittedly awkwardly) rattling back.

That said, I have also spoken to gunplumber personally on more than one occasion and he is an honest man. I have also spoken to entreprise's people and they are honest as well.

The bottom line is this:
Both entreprise and dsa will make your rifle right if there is anything wrong.
Both entreprise and dsa rifles will shoot better than most people on this board (myself included). They will certainly both fulfill the role of defensive longarm easily.
Both entreprise and dsa rifles retain their values well, losing at most 150$ in resale.

DSA rifles are superbly made and outclass Entreprise rifles, which should be considered service grade rifles in the same category as G3, Cetme, and Galil rebuilds. DSA rifles are in the same category as DPMS, SPRINGFIELD Loaded, and Tromix.

The price difference between EAI and DSA is about $800. DSAs cost nearly or more than double EAI rifles. Cameron's SA58 rifle likely cost him in excess of $2000 all told (am I right, cameron?). If you have the money for that, and a 600 yard semi-tack driver is what you want out of your FAL, then the extra $1200 may well be worth it.

---

One final note.
If you go on gunbroker, you will see MANY users selling their DSA FAL rifles. (9 right now)

It is highly uncommon to see anyone selling an Entreprise FAL. (0 right now).

Given that EAI sells far more receivers than DSA due to their lower cost, do you not find it strange that there are not more people trying to sell their supposedly terrible Entreprise builds?

JonB
August 15, 2007, 01:54 PM
Thanks guys.

Cameron - the pics you posted is exactly what I am looking for. I was pondering different barrel lengths, but think I have settled on the 16". I would probably go with a standard stock for now and worry about changing it out later. I assume it's a relatively easy thing to do. Or I may save a few bucks and go with the standard Carbine instead of the tactical one.

Silverlance - interesting observation on the gunbroker sales of both models.


Thanks all for pointing me in the right direction. I need to do some more reading and figure out which way I want to go.

Father Knows Best
August 15, 2007, 02:02 PM
Given that EAI sells far more receivers than DSA due to their lower cost, do you not find it strange that there are not more people trying to sell their supposedly terrible Entreprise builds?
Nope. People don't bother listing things on Gunbroker that there isn't any demand for, and that they won't get a decent price for. You see DSA FAL's listed all the time, because prices have skyrocketed on them. If you bought one several years ago for $1,000 you can sell it now for $1400-1500. On the other hand, you'll probably lose money on an Entreprise. Also, with wait times for new DSA's being 6-10 weeks, people who want a DSA now have no choice but to enter the used market. Gunbroker listings are just a reflection of that demand.

Gunbroker sales tend to be higher end items. It's the same reason you can find a half dozen Barrett M82A1's for sale there. It's not that they are junk; it's that people who have them know there is a demand for them, and they can get top dollar for them on Gunbroker.

eldon519
August 15, 2007, 07:15 PM
I just recently put a order down for a DSA StG58. The wait time I was given was 14 weeks.

silverlance
August 28, 2007, 08:59 PM
just saw this post. father knows best, what you said about entreprise rifles not selling on gunbroker simply isn't true.

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=77431677 (http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=78045974)

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=78045974

Father Knows Best
August 28, 2007, 09:28 PM
Read my post again, silverlance. I never said that Entreprise guns don't sell. You were the one who argued that the high number of listing for DSA guns relative to Entreprise guns was an indication that DSA owners were less satisfied than Entreprise owners. I said that is specious reasoning, and stated that you don't see as many Entreprise guns listed simply because they don't command the high prices that DSA guns do. The fact that you were able to buy one for $800 in a package that included $400 worth of ammo and mags pretty much proves my point.

See again my post on the other thread about Corvettes and Chevettes.

Ian Sean
August 28, 2007, 09:34 PM
Wow....about $300 worth of ammo....the mags also...gun looks pretty bad...terrible or no finish.

What in the world did bubba do to gouge that charging handle like that?:what:

All in all a fair price for an Enterprise, bare bones they go for $400-$500, I wouldn't touch one without a full inspection and test fire myself.

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