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Need some help buying an FAL

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Comedian, Aug 1, 2012.

  1. Comedian

    Comedian Well-Known Member

    Ok, so my best friend's wedding is coming up and I'd like to get him a nice STG 58 from DS Arms. However, since I know he's into studying the various "bush wars" in Africa, I'd like to get a replica (or replicate) of one of the rifles used in one of those conflicts if possible. I'd also like to get some period load bearing gear if I come in under budget enough. Anyway, while I know a bit about the wars and the period, I know comparatively little about period kit and the various FAL variants. So any help in those areas is very appreciated. Thanks in advance.

    P.S. Since it's bound to be asked, the area of use this rifle will most likely see is range plinking and such. The intended recipient lives in a suburb (so home defense is out) and, while he is a police officer, there's no chance in hell they'll let him use it as a patrol gun short of some kind of SWAT exception.
  2. BP Hunter

    BP Hunter Well-Known Member

    I hope this info helps just to let you know the STG58 is an excellent rifle. I just purchased it 2 weeks ago - DSA STG58 Austrian Paratrooper with folding stock and built in bipods. Initially I was expecting a big recoil from the .308 but it was surprisingly light. The recoil seem to be lighter than the AK in my opinion. The rifle is very easy to disassemble for cleaning just like the AK. What's nice also is that it is piston driven which I didn't know. My only complaint is that the rifle is quite heavy. About 10 pounds with full 20 round magazine. Good luck!
  3. Comedian

    Comedian Well-Known Member

    I appreciate the response, but I'm already aware that DSA FALs are legit. What I need to know is what would be required in order to turn one of their STG 58's into a replica of a "bush war" FAL (or if it's even possible or if I need to do anything at all). Like what flash hider, furniture, bipod or no bipod, carry handle or not etc.
  4. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

    Assuming your pal's interest is in the RLI and/or Selous Scouts, the only appropriate FALs would be either the L1A1 or the South African R1.

    I don't think DSA makes an inch-pattern rifle (not completely sure) but the R1s were metric pattern guns and you should be able to find one in DSAs lineup that looks just like the ones the troopies carried.

    Here (http://www.gunauction.com/search/displayitem.cfm?itemnum=7316847) is an R1 parts kit for sale with some clear pics so you can see which flash hider, stock, forearm, etc. were used. I don't think you're going to find the grenade launcher sight easily though.
  5. M1key

    M1key Well-Known Member

    So, you're buying him a FAL as a wedding gift? What will his prospective bride have to say? :uhoh:

  6. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

    What in the world difference would that make? :scrutiny: HIS present, not hers.
  7. M1key

    M1key Well-Known Member

    LOL, I'd like to see folks reaction when they unwrap it at the reception. :neener:

  8. Comedian

    Comedian Well-Known Member

    My understanding is that, while the FALs originally acquired by the Rhodesian government were L1A1s, they later ended up with a significant amount of South African R1s. From the pics I'm seeing on the net, most seem equipped with the Belgian short flash hider, sliding rear sight, plastic furniture, both with and without lightening cuts/carry handle, and the long (21") barrel. I've yet to see any with bipods.

    I've now encountered another conundrum: Most of the pictured FALs also have a baby <deleted> green camo paint job. So I ask you, people of THR, if you were to recieve such a gift would you want/expect the camo paint to also be recreated?
    Thanks for the pics.
    I'm probably going to give it to him pre or post reception. Though, if I'm honest, I haven't really thought about that yet.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2012
  9. Robert

    Robert Moderator

    As far as web gear goes look for British pattern 58. I am pretty sure that is the correct pattern gear.
  10. Z-Michigan

    Z-Michigan Well-Known Member

    If you want an authentic R1, you have a choice between a tired used-parts gun (most saw extensive combat) which can be found cheaply, or a really nice gunsmith build which will take time and money to get.

    If I were the recipient I would be very happy with a nice Belgian pattern FAL, unpainted, and whatever period web gear you wanted to include. The two best options for this would be:
    -DSA IMBEL Rifle - comparable to their STG-58 as it's made from a parts kit, but a Brazilian made and used kit in excellent shape.
    -DSA SA58 - the all-new-US-parts FAL, somewhat more expensive (c. $1600) but quite nice.
  11. Comedian

    Comedian Well-Known Member

    Thanks, I'll have to start hunting for some to see if it fits the budget.
    Thought about it and decided I'd rather give him something new that can be shot and modified to his taste than a 40 or so year old rifle that's been hogged out from 2-3 wars worth of wear (even if said rifle is still really cool for the history attached to it).
    This is the route I plan to go, I'm currently caught choosing between 18" and 21" fixed stock models.
  12. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Well-Known Member

    For GA residents or visitors to Atlanta-area shows, a private seller with a table had an all-original FN FAL (the true Belgian) at a recent gun show in Gwinnett GA (was it June or July?). It appeared to be in excellent, if not mint condition.

    The price was at least $1500, if not higher, from what I remember.

    Anyone traveling south of Atlanta might call Coyote Arms, a ways south in Newnan. They sold me an Enfield at the March show. Really good people.
    The daughter is a mortician, and they can often buy numerous guns from families of the deceased. "Coyote Frank" had an FN-49 with scope at the Gwinnett show, so Maybe an FAL or DSA will be available from his shop or confidential private collection (which is for sale).
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2012

    HEAVY METAL 1 Well-Known Member

    Wow, what a friend. Best thing I got from a buddy at my wedding was a cheap cigar...:mad:

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