Century Arms R1A1


January 25, 2010, 08:35 PM
I picked up a Century Arms R1A1 in a trade. A guy had the gun for sale in backpage for $550. I ended up trading him a Harley transmission that I paid $200 for. The gun says:

Century Arms Inc
Georgia, VT
R1A1 Sporter 308 Cal
Made in USA

On the back lower right side of the receiver it says:

It has a cover with a full length rail and on the inside of the cover it says:

On the inside of the magwell is written "Metric"

It has a Burris 6-24x Signature scope on it and looks to have a mildot like reticle.

It came with two mags.

Can someone tell me more about this particular rifle?

The furniture is a dark charcoal gray color. The handguard is ribbed.


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January 25, 2010, 10:20 PM
remember to post pictures of all new rifles!

January 25, 2010, 11:09 PM
The "ZA" serial number prefix means it's built on a post-revolution Zimbabwean rifle kit from Zimbabwe/Rhodesia, if I remember right.

Metric means your magwell is set up for metric magazines (as opposed to "inch" pattern mags used on British, Canadian, and Australian versions of the FAL). This is good, since metric mags are much more plentiful and cheaper than inch patterns.

The main thing to check on it is what sort of feed ramps you have -- some of the Century built receivers had improperly made feed ramps that can cause reliability issues. Search here on the website, or Googling "century FAL feed ramps" should get you some in depth explanations on what to look for.

The main other thing to remember if you're new to the FAL is that the gas system is adjustable and may need to be dialed in when you start shooting to get it running smoothly on your particular ammo.

January 25, 2010, 11:23 PM
I used to have one, built on an Imbel receiver. It ran OK, but accuracy was mediocre and I had to open up the gas system nearly all the way to get it to function reliably.

I sold it to fund a Saiga .308 build.

January 26, 2010, 12:32 AM

I would go over to FALfiles and ask the same question as hotlinked above. I would elaborate more, but I'm not as well versed. I had a Steyr factory build which is supposedly one of the highest end/most sought after. But I definitely don't know as much about 'em. I would get it headspaced and checked out by a gunsmith though, just to be sure.

Good luck and good shootin'!

January 26, 2010, 12:40 AM
It is a great deal. You will love it.

January 26, 2010, 01:47 AM
$200 for an R1A1!

You stole it at that price! Congrats!

We need pics btw:D

Even it turns out that you don't like it and decide to sell it you could easily get $600 or more for it on gunbroker.com

January 26, 2010, 09:01 AM
Yeah. To paraphrase nwilliams, you def got a steal, and we def need pics! I posted when I was too tired last night and forgot the important stuff. LOL

January 26, 2010, 10:24 AM
Even if the rifle needs a little work, it was a heck of a steal! That said, I would automatically change out a couple of parts, mainly the piston rod. CAI used a lot of 2 piece rods that are not very reliable, IME. Get a good one piece and you can't go wrong. Maybe a spring change too, just for safety sake.

FALs are not known for accuracy, so I would pull that Tapco top cover and scope, and go to town with the battle sights.

January 26, 2010, 03:17 PM
Like everyone says you got a steel...don't know much about the r1a1. I got a century l1a1 at a pawn shot for 620 out the door and I love it. The 308 gets expensive to shoot a lot but is damn sure fun to watch coyote dodge and scramble lol, I have the sa58 top cover on mine and reload ammo and it shoots great.

January 26, 2010, 08:21 PM
Here are pics of the gun. After studying everything I could I have decided this was a unibrow gun that someone with cerebal palsy used a dremel tool on. The feedramps are nasty. However I took it to the range and adjusted the gas system and just like someone at FalFiles said, at 4 it worked perfectly. I put thru 40 rounds of old (Portuguese?) black primer stuff.

The flash hider is like no other FAL piece that I have found. It appears to be either welded or soldered on. The trigger is pretty decent. I am going to look for a regular dust cover to put on the gun. The scope appears to be a fairly expensive scope. It is a Burris 6-24X Select. It has an AO and also an adjustable aperture that you can set between daylight and twilight.

Based on these photos can anyone tell me the country(s) of origin of the parts? I am assuming this is one of the FrankenFAL's that I have read about.







January 27, 2010, 03:15 PM
Very nice rifle.

January 27, 2010, 03:29 PM
I dunno, the last picture looks like something is amiss.

Better send it to me to check out, I am a FAL gunsmith. At least on the internet. :D

In case it wasn't evident, I'm kidding. Good deal.

January 27, 2010, 04:03 PM
R 1 is what the South Africans called the FAL years ago. Not much help.

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