CETME or Romak-3


February 25, 2009, 03:12 AM
I'm looking to get my first real Semi Auto and have narrowed it down to one of 2 rifles. Either a CETME (G3 clone) in .308, or a Romak-3 in 7.62X54R. I'm looking for something I can buy for under $650 that I can use primarily as a recreational/target rifle while still being acurate enough to use during deer season. I'm NOT looking to go the AR route since everybody and their mother has an AR these days. Also I'm not so sure I would want to use .223 when deer hunting.

So if you have any thoughts or comments on either the CETME or the Romak-3, I'd appreciate it. Also if you can think of any other decent rifle I might take a look at, please feel free to comment.

I just want something:

Semi Auto
That has readily available ammo
That has readily available magazines
Under $700 including the scope

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Max C.
February 25, 2009, 05:08 AM
Those are basically two very different guns for two different uses. The CETME is an assault rifle (in heritage none the less) and the Romak PSL is a DMR/Sniper rifle. I'd say go for the PSL but the G3 does have the merit of using more common .308 ammunition. If you have a Mosin Nagant and a bunch of ammo already, you're probably set for the PSL.

On that note, you may want to go to reevaluate your needs and possibly go for something like a Mini-30 Ranch Rifle or another brand of Semi-auto .308 or 30-06 rifle. I love my Mosin Nagant and would love a PSL, but I also realize that I should buy A LOT of ammunition for it in case it falls out of use or becomes more expensive. I doubt .308 will have the same problem in the future.

Also you have it backwards, the G3 is based off of the CETME which in turn was based off of the StG45 (not that it's a major error). Yes, it seems strange that a German company would turn to a Spanish interpretation of a German design but thats how it happened haha.

February 25, 2009, 05:18 AM
@Max C.

... not surprisingly the G3 is based on the CETME,
as the german Designers first continued their
work in France, then in Spain, before continuing
their work back home and calling it G3....

February 25, 2009, 05:32 AM
Yes Max, I did realize the differences in weapons classes, but I chose these two for several reasons; including caliber, magazine capacity, looks, and acuracy. A CETME with a good scope and a bipod would make a good rifle both on the range and in the feild. And the PSL was designed for what I am wanting to use it for. With the right adjustments both rifles would fit my purposes well.

I had thought of the Mini-30, but have not read any good reviews on them. Also they're a bit out of my set price range. Like I said, 700 is the absolute max I will go on my setup, that includes optics. What would you suggest for a 30-06 rifle. Nothing bolt I hope, as I've had enough of those for a while. I had a 8mm mauser and a .303 Enfield both of which i've gotten rid of. For now, I'm looking for strictly a semi rifle.

Yeah I caught that just a few minutes ago...You're right though, it does seem strange that the G3 would be based off of the Spanish CETME. Glad they did though, since they later went on to make (IMHO) the worlds finest semi auto sniper rifle, the PSG1.

February 25, 2009, 07:13 AM
I'd go with the PSL. Had mine for years now and no problems to speak of. The ammunition has gotten more expensive in recent years but not to the point that it makes me not what to shoot it. Using 7N1 ammunition, I can manage to group well inside the 9 ring of a NRA MR target at 500yds just with the iron sights.

February 25, 2009, 11:56 PM
Can I ask, how much did you get your PSL for?

February 26, 2009, 06:59 AM
I paid ~$450 for one that had no scope about five years ago. I'm not sure what they run nowadays.


Looks like gunbroker has them starting out at $700 and running as high as $1300 (with many accessories) but they all include some sort of optic. I didn't see any that came only with iron sights

February 26, 2009, 01:19 PM
I pulled my Romac-3 out of the safe last night for a closer look as I haven't shot it in awhile. It was imported by "Int. Arms Int." of TN and made in 2001. It included a 4x scope that I've replaced with an 8x and two magazines that will hold 10 rounds each. The mags are serial numbered to the rifle.

As I recall, accuracy was on the order of 1.5 MOA with heavy (182 grain) ball ammo. I've never shot the 147 grain light ball in it but will one of these days. I expect the light ball to be more accurate.

I've also owned a CETME and IMO you'll be pleased with either rifle. Both have their good points and not so good points. For longer ranges, go with the Romac-3. For normal distances, the CETME will do just fine.

February 26, 2009, 01:25 PM

A lot of the CETMES weren't built very well (Century). The ammo for the Romak is also MUCH cheaper.

February 26, 2009, 01:25 PM
Could somebody perhaps expound on the negative points?
Doubs43, if you had to choose between the two, what do you think you'd go with? My maximum range is prolly gonna be maybe 200 yards. I'd imagine both could handel that, right?

February 26, 2009, 04:37 PM
I had a Cetme for many years. Was $300 out the door from my dealer.
Was one of the first ones Century offered,and it worked 100%.
Was a great gun when ammo was $150 per K shipped.
Same ammo is over $500 now. She went down the road
PSL,is one of the most fun guns I own. Ammo is dirt cheap,very important
in todays market.
It's more important to have a "sizeable" stash of ammo for your gun,then the "type" of gun you pick.
Your $$ figure is very low for a gun and scope,mags,and ammo.

February 26, 2009, 04:44 PM
The only real problem I've had with my PSL is that it dents some of the case shoulders pretty bad after firing but not many. And unless you happen across some brass 7.62x54 and intend on reloading it then this is probably meaningless. I guess the only other thing I can gripe about my PSL is that it's not an exceptionally accurate weapon (but not at all inaccurate) but I didn't buy it for its accuracy.

February 26, 2009, 07:04 PM
I've been interested in a PSL for a while and done some homework, here's what I've found lately.

First thing to think about with the PSL, make sure you shoulder one and check how it fits you. I'm 6'4" and the PSL was apparently made for people about 5' nothin'. The LOP is extremely short.

Second thing, I looked at one here in Fort Worth a couple weeks ago, and the store wanted almost $1100 for it :what:!

Another one I've seen recently was at a gun show in San Antonio, and that guy wanted $1300. That's quite a ways outside your $650 price range.

Just food for thought, good luck in your search!

February 26, 2009, 08:02 PM
I had a CETME and loved it, cant speak about the other as Ive never had one but from what I do know about them its jsut a beafed up AK and ammo is cheaper for it. as for the CETME. The reason I got rid of mine is bacause it wouldnt shoot 1" MOA at 100 yards with any scope mount I tried, thats not to say they will not do it but I couldnt get a mount to stay zero on it. if you use the iron sites it shoots just as good at 100 yards as it does with the best craw scope mount and 9X leapold. If I had the choice I would go for the Romak-3. Ide bet it is more accurate. I know my cheap Mosan Magant is. and it was less the $100.

February 26, 2009, 08:33 PM
Your $$ figure is very low for a gun and scope,mags,and ammo.

My budget is only for the gun and scope. Mags and ammo is a lil different. I'm probably gonna only get 2 more mags, reguardles of the gun. I really don't need more. I'm not the kinda guy who burns through brass that quickly. Probably should check though, if it's reasonable to find either one for that range huh? lol

February 26, 2009, 09:53 PM
A lot of the CETMES weren't built very well (Century).
I agree with that. mine worked fine if the mag was bent perfectly and although it was very fun to shoot it really had that stamped POS feel to it. I always had the words "desposable machinegun" on my mind when I would shoot with mine. not sure if you have done it yet but you should really get your hands on both of them to see what I mean.

February 26, 2009, 10:43 PM
The CETME is a great rifle, but I haven't had mine out lately since the ammo has gotten so high for it. The fluted chamber reportedly makes the brass harder to reload, but that hasn't been a problem for me, since mine puts ejected brass into low earth orbit and I almost never find the damn stuff.

Be sure to ask if the bolt has been ground, many times this was done to (incorrectly) correct headspace on these roller-locked rifles. A feeler gauge to check bolt gap is something you want to have with you when looking at one of these.

February 27, 2009, 01:30 AM
7.62Surgeon, making a decision between the two would be tough but I'd probably buy the Romac-3 as it's new, comes with a couple of mags and has a scope. My son "borrowed" my CETME and I doubt that it ever comes home again! He replaced the original mags with German mags (H&K?) that work much better.

February 27, 2009, 09:54 PM
PSL............better weapon...cheaper ammo..........:D

February 27, 2009, 10:21 PM
Okay. Well, you have the following.

Right now, you'll be lucky to find what you are looking for in the price limitation you've set for yourself. Quite simple, .308/.30-06/7.62x54R semi-autos have all taken a major jump in price.

You might be able to find a barebones CETME, or a PSL/Romak-3 with no scope in that price range. But you'll have to do a lot of searching.

As for which to get, I suggest PSL/Romak-3. Make sure to use the lighter (140-150 grain ammo). You can still buy 440 round spam tins for very reasonable prices (think around $150 or so, often less) of milsurp ammo from Yugo/Hungarian sources.

Most will group quite well. Just make sure to clean that bad boy out when using anything other than WOLF steel case, or commercial brass. Pretty much all the milsurp ammo is corrosive.

February 28, 2009, 01:06 AM
I have both a century C-91 (CETME with black furniture) and a PSL. They're both fun, but if I had to shoose, it'd be the CETME for sure. Much more accurate and reliable, with readily available magazines that are 20 round and dirt cheap (like $5 per mag cheap). All PSL mags are 10 round, and run $30-$40.

I got really lucky with my CETME: It shoots consistently sub-MOA with my handloads, and right around 1" with Federal American Eagle. 1.5" to 2" with much of the surplus stuff. My PSL is 2-3 MOA.

The ergonomics of either rifle suck compared to an AR-10 or M1A, and I'd ditch both the CETME and PSL before my Armalite AR-10 Carbine


February 28, 2009, 01:24 AM
The PSL's ergonomics grew on me. I like it. It's surprisingly comfortable once you get used to it. Nice and lightweight, too. I liked it so much I put a PSL stock on my Saiga when I converted it. Nice and comfy, brings the weight in close.

February 28, 2009, 06:41 AM
You really think you will find either one for under $650? What I have seen they are $300 to $400 higher. Add a couple hundred more for the scope and mount.

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