What is "Egyptian contract" FN-49?


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Col. Plink
November 29, 2012, 03:38 PM
Hey y'all,
Have been wanting an FN-49 in 8mm for awhile and see an ad for "Egyptian contract" one. Are they different? Not as good? thanks in advance!

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Kabal
November 29, 2012, 05:22 PM
While I am no expert on the subject, I believe that all SAFN 49s were produced by FN in Herstal, so I doubt there's a difference in quality between the ones chambered in 8x57IS that were built for Egypt and the ones built for other countries in different calibers. There might be a difference in (collector's) value, though.

The only SAFNs that are really different should be those that the Argentinians rechambered to 7.62x51mm NATO. Those have detachable magazines and take FAL magazines, if I remember correctly.

This thread is interesting for me because my father also wants to buy an SAFN in 8x57IS. Most people seem to rate this rifle above other early semi-autos like the SVT-40, the MAS-49, the Ljungmann AG-42 or the Hakim. I wonder how it compares to the Garand?

selector67
November 29, 2012, 05:28 PM
No, it just means they were built for the Egyptian army, they are no different from the other FN-49s with exception of difference's in the muzzle break and that the Egyptian is chambered in 8mm mauser. The 8mm is the least disirable of all the FN-49s because it is the most numerous one you will run into. That being said they will still run into the low$500 to as high as $800 or more for one in excellent shape :)

selector67
November 29, 2012, 05:38 PM
I own an SVT-40, FN-49 in 8mm, a Hakim 8mm based on the AG-42 and a Garand, and a MAS-49, and my favorite to shoot is my MAS 49 :)

rbernie
November 29, 2012, 05:41 PM
I believe that all SAFN 49s were produced by FN in Herstal, so I doubt there's a difference in quality between the ones chambered in 8x57IS that were built for Egypt and the ones built for other countries in different calibers. There might be a difference in (collector's) value, though.

This is correct.

barnbwt
November 29, 2012, 11:53 PM
Most people seem to rate this rifle above other early semi-autos like the SVT-40, the MAS-49, the Ljungmann AG-42 or the Hakim. I wonder how it compares to the Garand?

Aside from perhaps the MAS-49/56, the FN49 is probably the most advanced of the WWII era semi autos, simply because it was built latest among almost all of those. I own a Luxembourg in 30-06, and I'd like to shoot a Garand sometime to inform my opinion of how the two stack up.

What I do know is the SAFN loads via stripper clips instead of en blocs, holds 10 rounds to the Garand's 8, and uses a tilting locking piece to lock the bolt like its descendant, the FAL. Perhaps most importantly, I believe most FN49s available these days tend to be in better condition for the price than a comparable M1. I got a great deal on mine for 600$ earlier this year (I've seen ~1000$ since then), and it is in nearly unused condition (bright, clean bore, clean/clear wood, 80% of paint on metal). All FN49s have adjustable (though it's a bit of a pain to do so on the fly) gas settings and a grenade launcher gas-shutoff valve. The safety is a 1" arm above the trigger that swings down to block the trigger guard. There is a sliding dust cover that can be used to cover the charging handle slot when not shooting (bolts pushes it back, where it stays until pushed forward again by the user).

What I cannot speak for is how it stacks up against the Garand as far as sight quality (FN49 has elevation adjustable rear peep, windage adjustable front post), but the Garand sight looks (and probably is) fancier. The trigger (I've read) on the FN49 is a double-sear design similar to Browning rifles of the era, and seems nice enough to me for a military arm, but I can't speak for the Garand. I found the stock on mine very comfortable; more like a sporting rifle stock than the straight wristed/combed "musket stocks" of many bolt rifles of the War. The wood quality (on the Luxembourg guns, at least) is excellent; about like a nice (but not "showy") walnut hunting rifle. I've heard the 8mm kicks more than the 30-06 (duh!) but the rifle isn't so light that it wouldn't be uncontrollable, even if the very loud (but extremely effective) Egyptian muzzle break was absent. I'd just get something soft to cover the steel butt pad, if it's an issue.

The SAFN/FN49 is said to be "The Last Elegant Battle Rifle," but I tend to think of it as an expensively made FAL in gorgeous attire. It would seriously give the M1 Garand a run for its money :cool:

TCB
PS-mine doesn't happen to be hard on brass at all (shooting hunting ammo w/ the gas adjusted) and ejects 15ft forward to the right.
PPS-if you're interested in a semi auto 8MM, there may be a user posting a nice Hakim for sale shortly

wlewisiii
November 30, 2012, 12:40 AM
I'd like to find a Venezuelan rifle in 7x57 myself. Not too likely I'll ever find one I can afford :lol: That said, if you can get one, grab it & enjoy. Very neat & interesting rifles that deserve to be better known.

an expensively made FAL in gorgeous attire.

I like that description. Then again, I like the FAL... (T48 in .280 Nato... what could have been... :banghead: )

Ash
November 30, 2012, 07:04 AM
Okay, there are Egyptians and there are Egyptians. They are all made from FN parts, but not all of them were assembled by FN. Century evidently got a pile of parts and assembled a bunch of rifles themselves. These are all Egyptian but are not the same quality as FN rifles - yet ironically look nicer because they are refinished/unused. The the stock has a plastic butt plate, it is Egyptian via Century's drunken monkeys. If it has the steel butt plate in a stock with a little character and a stock disc, it is Egyptian via FN. There is a difference both in performance and value - though the Century versions usually shoot okay.

I would say the Garand is more accurate than the FN49 and the 10 round box magazine doesn't really confer an advantage. First, reloading with chargers is much slower than loading with an enbloc clip. Heck, reloading with an enbloc is faster than reloading with a magazine. However, it is true that with the FN49 you get to fire 10 rounds before reloading. Also, you need not equip an army with clips. That has only been a theoretical problem that never bore out in the real world. The Italians, Austrians, nor Americans never had problems with them in the field - they issued their ammo preloaded on clips already just as many nations pack ammo preloaded on chargers even today.

In the FN49's favor, I would say it is more durable with its ability to adjust for multiple loads or variable ammo quality. It is also has a better operating rod. I prefer the Garand's rotating bolt, but tilting bolts obviously work just fine, too. The only reason the FN49 was not really a success was its late arrival to the full-power, fully-wood stocked battle rifle dance and the FAL was a better rifle. But the 49 remains a solid, extremely well-built rifle. Had it been issue to Belgium in, say, 1939, the Germans would have fielded a combat rifle by 1941 that would have been every bit as effective in the field as the Garand. I'm glad Saive spent so much time on the Browning Hi Power in that decade.

berettashotgun
November 30, 2012, 10:29 PM
The 7x57 venzy REALLY rings your ears! But barely pushes your shoulder.
Pretty efficient brake design.

Kabal
December 2, 2012, 09:33 PM
My father won an as-good-as-new SAFN in 8x57IS at an auction, but thanks to German bureaucracy, it will take some time before he (and I) will be able to handle it.

On a side note, there's a webstore that sells a .30-06 trigger group with a "happy switch". How many full-auto Model 49s were made, and who used them?

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