Greatest semi-auto battle rifle in history..

Mooncake

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Tip o’ the cap to the old Belgian beauties — impossible to argue that the moniker “Right Arm of the Free World” wasn’t well deserved — but I don’t see how anyone who has shot both can’t prefer the smooth impulse of the roller delayed action over the short stroke piston, especially with a nice heavy buffer.

My two 91s: one unmolested and one...well...molested.
378595F3-2051-4E0F-A62A-243BC759F21D.jpeg 1571E509-AB20-4442-A710-58605263721D.jpeg 9E8A3F64-69FC-4800-A28E-49133B174705.jpeg
 

sandwarrior

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Apr 21, 2007
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[QUOTE="flyer, post: 7244659, member: 122586"]I was never in. I don't like orders.



.../QUOTE]
The fact you were never in and received no training would explain why you are so vehement about your position.

The M16, whatever current variant, is the standard service rifle of the U.S. The links soulezoo keeps posting to wiki are not how militaries classify their rifles. It's how civilians like you see them and are told by media outlets what they are. Look up any manual on the M16

 
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Strykervet

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Sandwarrior, it's semantics that they're arguing. I can't remember where it came up or who said it but 7.62 is a battle rifle and 5.56 is an assault rifle and 9mm is SMG. Pretty sure "assault rifle" was coined by the antigun crowd. Anyway, it's a classification, and now I wish I knew where it came from. I know now they're probably hearing it second hand online. But it's not a BAD classification really, and I think Jane's uses it but I can't find that book offhand. FAL's, G3's, M14's, etc., all are heavier, bigger, more recoil, less ammo for a combat load, they share all these attributes. M16, AK, and all the other intermediate cartridges weigh less, are generally smaller, less recoil, more ammo for a combat load, and they all share these attributes. Same with SMG. So yeah, not a bad classification for firearms in general I guess. You gotta do it somehow.

But I see where you're coming from too.

When I was in, we just called it our "weapon". I guess I walked around and still called it a rifle but things wear on you so I call it a weapon now too. But "weapon" is universal for anything that goes boom. In my unit I called it a rifle. Or M4. Or carbine, all in addition to weapon. It is what it is. When we tried to get the M14 stores opened for SDM's, we'd have called 'em "SDM rifles" or just M14.

Never heard the "main battle rifle" discussion in the army I don't believe. And they sure as shit don't teach it. And yes, the main battle rifle of the US Army is the M4 carbine. It's not even a rifle, let alone a "main" battle rifle! And at the same time it is. Because it is what it is. If you fight a battle in the US Army today, you'll be doing it with an M4, your main battle rifle that isn't, yet is.

I do kinda find it funny though, him calling YOU the dumb ass that doesn't know what he's talking about! Some people...
 
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W54/XM-388

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Pretty sure "assault rifle" was coined by the antigun crowd. Anyway, it's a classification, and now I wish I knew where it came from. I know now they're probably hearing it second hand online. But it's not a BAD classification really, and I think Jane's uses it but I can't find that book offhand..
If I understand my history correctly the term "Assault Rifle" comes from the German Sturmgewehr
Kind of a story like all Communists, the National Socialists ultimate leader didn't appreciate anybody trying to muck up his glorious army with new more effective weapons,
(You have a glorious 8mm bolt rifle, the world's fastest belt fed machine gun and an awesome machine pistol... how dare you want anything else...)

So they made the intermediate cartridge select fire rifle and called it just another machine pistol... then eventually when it wound up on the front lines & reports came back saying what a great improvement this new rifle was, the supreme leader suddenly was all for it, gave it a new name (Sturmgewehr) and claimed it was his idea all along. Much like anything done in a communist country.

Then of course the term "Assault Rifle" became like this thing people who never had been and never will be get all excited or all angry over and there you have it.
 
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flyer

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I'm not seeing where that says the M16 is a main battle rifle. I could post up a picture of a US T48 FAL manual if I wanted to, that doesn't even mean it was adopted by the military.

I agree that an M16 variant is the standard issue rifle in most US military branches. That doesn't make it a main battle rifle. It's a select fire rifle chambered in an intermediate cartridge and that makes it an "assault rifle". Literally that is the definition that the M16 falls within.

In other words, an "assault rifle" is the issue weapon for most branches of the US military.
 

CJS-6.5

Miss General Lee
Sep 15, 2017
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Vote M1 Garand.

1. Training with it makes you big and strong.
2. Using as a sniper rifle it works quite well.
3. Even without bullets it is an awesome weapon.
4. If you are freezing to death you can burn the stock. It's about 1/2 a cord...
5. Just because.
 

Soulezoo

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Jun 4, 2018
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It was Adolf Hitler that coined the term Assault Rifle in naming the Sturmgeweher 44. (Translated roughly to "assault rifle". ) The anti-gun crowd turned the term into a pejorative to describe any scary looking gun.

And I'm sorry that my links to wiki neither were instructive nor informational to you. Obviously they don't fit a particular narrative so you can easily dismiss them.

I really don't care. The OP expressed a defined parameter to his question and it was valid. Everything after that was semantics ... I really didn't offer an opinion (other than FAL) but tried to simply encourage an examination of commonly accepted terms. It got turned into something else. Really sad.

Once said: "arguing on the internet is like running in the Special Olympics; even if you win, you're still retarded".
 

Soulezoo

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Jun 4, 2018
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Hence why I said "roughly".

Enter sturmgewehr into any of your German/English translators and see what you get ;-)
(Its called a clue)
 
Feb 14, 2017
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Hence why I said "roughly".

Enter sturmgewehr into any of your German/English translators and see what you get ;-)
(Its called a clue)
I did. Google liked assault rifle but went back to storm when you delete gewehr. So they like to exactly translate single words and then roughly translate compound words. Several other translators stuck with the storm rifle translation. Obviously the german storm rifle is the meaning equivalent of our assault rifle, but as long as the only thing going in this thread is semantics arguments I figured I'd jump in just to be pedantic.
 
Dec 13, 2011
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This one went off the rails. I was thinking this had to be a Garand vs. Gewehr 43 vs. SVT-40 vs. MAS-49 vs. SKS, etc., type of thing. Semiautos, not select fire.
Very good point. Reckon I should've specified "best of self-loading rifles which are not viable/capable of full-auto"... oh well. No hard feelings
Any who, what about the SG 540 series?
 
Dec 13, 2011
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Tip o’ the cap to the old Belgian beauties — impossible to argue that the moniker “Right Arm of the Free World” wasn’t well deserved — but I don’t see how anyone who has shot both can’t prefer the smooth impulse of the roller delayed action over the short stroke piston, especially with a nice heavy buffer.

My two 91s: one unmolested and one...well...molested.
View attachment 6946245 View attachment 6946246 View attachment 6946247
I always heard the G3 series had pretty serious recoil all things considered?
 

Soulezoo

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Jun 4, 2018
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I did. Google liked assault rifle but went back to storm when you delete gewehr. So they like to exactly translate single words and then roughly translate compound words. Several other translators stuck with the storm rifle translation. Obviously the german storm rifle is the meaning equivalent of our assault rifle, but as long as the only thing going in this thread is semantics arguments I figured I'd jump in just to be pedantic.
As a German speaker, just like English, many words have multiple meanings. Many things German doesn't have a singular word so words are cobbled together to create a new meaning. Often, the meaning of the singular word changes. So in context of the word Sturm, it's direct translation is storm; but that translates to weather event. It becomes different things when combined. With sturmtruppen, it remains storm. With sturmpanzer, it is assault tank. Most of the time when sturm is combined in this sense, it is assault. Like, in English, to storm the castle would be to assault the castle. It ends up being the word best translated. Make sense? So, sturmgewehr correctly translates to assault rifle. I may not have articulated that well, but hope you get what I am saying.
 

Soulezoo

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Jun 4, 2018
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I always heard the G3 series had pretty serious recoil all things considered?
You know, mine did. In all, I thought it was a fine rifle except for the trigger, weight and recoil. And it rendered brass unreloadable. I preferred the FAL all things considered. The tunable gas system is a winner.
 
Feb 14, 2017
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@Soulezoo yeah I got what you were saying right from the beginning, I just wanted to be argumentative and didn't have anything of substance to add to the assault/main rifle debacle.
 
Feb 20, 2017
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As a German speaker, just like English, many words have multiple meanings. Many things German doesn't have a singular word so words are cobbled together to create a new meaning. Often, the meaning of the singular word changes. So in context of the word Sturm, it's direct translation is storm; but that translates to weather event. It becomes different things when combined. With sturmtruppen, it remains storm. With sturmpanzer, it is assault tank. Most of the time when sturm is combined in this sense, it is assault. Like, in English, to storm the castle would be to assault the castle. It ends up being the word best translated. Make sense? So, sturmgewehr correctly translates to assault rifle. I may not have articulated that well, but hope you get what I am saying.
I wondered when someone was going to point out the bleeding obvious! I held back because I felt that it was more appropriate for a German speaker to do so.
 
Feb 20, 2017
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Wellington New Zealand
You know, mine did. In all, I thought it was a fine rifle except for the trigger, weight and recoil. And it rendered brass unreloadable. I preferred the FAL all things considered. The tunable gas system is a winner.
Also the plastic butt stocks have a tendency to break off because they are simply a big piece of plastic attached to the receiver by a bolt. They should have some sort of u-shaped steel bracket at the front of the butt stock, to spread the load, in case of side pressure and ... don’t forget the receivers can develop cracks in the locking recesses. They do look cool, however and I like the backsights and scope mounting arrangements.
 

Novak77

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Sep 16, 2018
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I've always had a soft spot for the FAL. You can find them and their parts all over the world so logistically its a killer choice. Then again I love the G# and M14 as well lol.
 
Apr 17, 2010
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Interesting comment. My brother was Det-Sog (5th SF) in the middle years of Nam. He chose m1 carbine para. M16 too unreliable for him. He said he could have pretty much whatever he wanted and even rocked a foreign SMG for a short time. Can't recall what it was, I want to say it was Belgian but am not sure.

Swedish K-Sweden
Madsen M-50-Denmark

Both were somewhat common. I carried a Swedish K for a while.
 

sandwarrior

Gunny Sergeant
Apr 21, 2007
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You know, mine did. In all, I thought it was a fine rifle except for the trigger, weight and recoil. And it rendered brass unreloadable. I preferred the FAL all things considered. The tunable gas system is a winner.
Looking at the whole thread, in my first posts, I just wanted to clarify that the M16 is a "Rifle" not an assault rifle as described. Even carbines in the U.S. weren't called assault rifles. And being it is the primary issued weapon in the U.S., it should be a viable candidate for this discussion.

However, as it was clearly dismissed from this conversation, please note, I chose the FN-FAL as the best within the parameters of this post.
 

flyer

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Apr 25, 2018
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Rifle is an awfully big umbrella and the smaller umbrella of "main battle rifle" more closely contains the topic of the original post. The small umbrella that holds the M16 is "assault rifle", that is: a select fire rifle firing an intermediate cartridge.

I really am the retard king because semi-auto and full power cartridge were laid out in the first post and "battle rifle" is in the topic.
 

sandwarrior

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Apr 21, 2007
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Rifle is an awfully big umbrella and the smaller umbrella of "main battle rifle" more closely contains the topic of the original post. The small umbrella that holds the M16 is "assault rifle", that is: a select fire rifle firing an intermediate cartridge.

I really am the retard king because semi-auto and full power cartridge were laid out in the first post and "battle rifle" is in the topic.
That's why I liked your "retard King" post.:cool:
 

W54/XM-388

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I really am the retard king because semi-auto and full power cartridge were laid out in the first post and "battle rifle" is in the topic.
Another interesting point....
All of the common "Main Battle Rifles" that the ones passionate about being only 7.62x51 or similar say as examples..... are actually select fire.

M14
G3
FAL

All can do semi or full auto

Holding onto an M14 in full auto takes holding it correctly.
The G3 and FAL are a bit easier to do full auto

If we are going back to never had military full auto / select fire capability then all their favourites pretty much go bye.
 

flyer

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Apr 25, 2018
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Agreed but post WWII semi-auto issue rifles were kind of rare and mostly an ammo saving measure. I think some inch FALs were built that way but just missing the safety sear and maybe a semi-auto selector instead of the full sear block that semi-auto FAL receivers have.

Seeing as how full power chamberings and full auto firing don't mix too well, I overlooked it.
 

Strykervet

Resident Phoenix Eye and Dim Mak Instructor
Jun 5, 2011
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Okay, found my Jane's book, they classify FAL's, G3's, M14's and M16's and AUG's, etc., as "automatic rifles". Bolt guns and sniper rifles are "bolt rifles" and belt feeders or SAW's of all types are "machine guns". So "assault rifle" is some shit made up by anti's originally but has come to mean intermediate caliber rifles between battle rifle and submachinegun. If you look at the older books, that term isn't in 'em.

So it's just semantics and I think I explained it well for both sides above. That said, in "battle rifle" or ".308" or "full caliber" or whatever the fuck you wanna call it, the FAL was easily best all around. The damn thing was literally designed to fight WW3. So here's a more modern version of one, an SA58 with a new 18" Steyr barrel (the best barrel ever made for any FAL! Including the new DSA barrels!) Cerakote FDE and Patriot Brown w/Armor Black small parts inside and out. All oversized controls and all new Austrian parts. This rifle has a Jard 2 stage adj. trigger so it doesn't suffer from shitty trigger syndrome like most FALs. Para folder lower (aluminum) w/sand cut bolt carrier and have another steel lower w/fixed PRS stock and carrier that matches, and assloads of NEW Austrian, IMI and modified 30rd. Bren mags (impossible to find today for a decent price). SDN6 can and Blackout flash hider, C79 Elcan 7.62 optic. It's good for about 2MOA, is completely reliable, and is essentially a NIB rifle since being upgraded and refinished. Trigger is phenomenal for an FAL at around 2 or 3lbs. Yeah, a ~2lb. trigger in an FAL. Any serious FAL nuts contact me, I may let it go for the right price and/or trade.

IMG_0930.JPG

IMG_0931.JPG
 

flyer

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Apr 25, 2018
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No, the antis made up "assault weapon" and it's definition is so vague and malleable that an anti will claim it covers everything from a musket to a Glock.

Sturmgewehr is the genesis of "Assault Rifle" and it's pretty simple, "storm the castle" means the same thing as "assault the castle" so the proper translation is "assault rifle" and more importantly the STG 44 was one of the first combinations of an intermediate cartridge and select fire operation creating the new class of military weapon.

Trust me, when you have to deal with antis spouting nonsense constantly and using your words against you, definitions matter and you have to know them.

To show that the confusion isn't new, the Austrian version of the FN FAL is the STG 58 and while it had many of the features of modern "assault rifles", it's full power cartridge takes it out of that class.
 

Strykervet

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Yeah, I get where you are coming from, but having been army I get where sandwarrior is coming from too. He's former military too and very much knows his shit, just so you know. It's an argument of semantics and you're both right.

The SA58 above originally came in STG58 configuration and was an STG58 with the obligatory US parts (which were actually better made than the originals in most cases, like a new trigger group) and a new SA58 marked upper. I got it for $800. But little is left of the original rifle now and it's worth a good deal more.

But if you wanted a quality STG58 clone, what I'd do is be patient first, then look around everyday for a new or used DSA STG58 built on a SA58 upper like mine. Look for one built before 2006 or 2008; they ran out of new Austrian Steyr barrels around this time and started using new DSA replacements. Or you could buy or build a new one with rails or whatever. FWIW, the scope mount I have (I actually have 2, a black spare) is the best scope mount made for the FAL, hands down.

The SAW grip is more comfortable IMO (was a SAW gunner at one point, so...). And all the modifications made to it really update an older rifle --after all, the M4 isn't that much younger and got updated the same way. That's why I say it's relevant. Hell, it'll even accommodate a CNVD! Be better with a nicer scope, but still, it'll do it no problem. It's suppressed and has a 2 stage trigger. Folding stock and sand cuts and totally Cerakoted. Rails, white/IR light and I could put a PEQ on it if I planned on using it. It's a modern rifle in every respect the others are.

The M14 got updated with the SAGE stock and the Troy SOPMOD around 2002 or 2003 and there's also the M21 and M25 Whitefeather, which I knew a guy who used of these in Iraq. If you use a match grade rifle for the conversion, or purchase the rifle that way, then that's a DAMN nice rifle and WAY better than the FAL. It's more accurate and the SAGE, etc., really brings it into the 21st century. I'd trade or sell my FAL in order to get an M14 like this. Wish I'd bought one way back when. Always wanted one. I prefer the M14 myself see, but I understand the FAL is the winner in this discussion.

G3 is still G3. PTR makes some nice stuff but nobody really uses G3 if they can afford better. They're the lightest one of the three but kick the hardest. Follow up shots are a pain in the ass and fluted chambers ruin brass, as does it banging into the receiver. Well built if a real HK or possibly the PTR (never handled or shot one) and they work well. The sniper version of these, the PSG 1, are super expensive if real HK, much different than G3, and as accurate an SR25, more or less. Heavy as hell. The in between, the MSG90, if it performs well and is priced reasonably, it'd be a good choice I'd think if you dig these rifles. PSG1 is a sniper rifle, MSG90 is more a sniper/SDM rifle. Then there's the various G3's they sell and they sell a LOT. They're basically the DSA of HK's. Have 5.56 and 9mm too. Hard to say these are updated or upgraded though since these versions have all existed for a long, long time and HK doesn't really do the .308 HK91 family anymore save the MP5's.

So updates and upgrades also play a role. Is the weapon still in use? Did it make a comeback? Can it be upgraded to a modern weapons? For the FAL and M14, yes, for the G3 not so much. You can get rails and stuff but it takes more than that. USMC is just now replacing their M14 versions they were using for sniper support, so I understand. The FAL is still in use in some countries, but it's only updated by civilians and maybe police dept.'s in US. It's more like a Western AK. So M14 will be completely phased out of service real soon.
 

W54/XM-388

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The M14 got updated with the SAGE stock and the Troy SOPMOD around 2002 or 2003 and there's also the M21 and M25 Whitefeather, which I knew a guy who used of these in Iraq. If you use a match grade rifle for the conversion, or purchase the rifle that way, then that's a DAMN nice rifle and WAY better than the FAL. It's more accurate and the SAGE, etc., really brings it into the 21st century. I'd trade or sell my FAL in order to get an M14 like this. Wish I'd bought one way back when. Always wanted one. I prefer the M14 myself see, but I understand the FAL is the winner in this discussion.
I found a pretty good deal on a Springfield M1A in their National Match configuration and put it in the Sage stock, it came out pretty nice.
(If you do, just make sure you get the stock with the large barrel block as the National Match won't fit in the standard block)

G3 is still G3. PTR makes some nice stuff but nobody really uses G3 if they can afford better. They're the lightest one of the three but kick the hardest. Follow up shots are a pain in the ass and fluted chambers ruin brass, as does it banging into the receiver. Well built if a real HK or possibly the PTR (never handled or shot one) and they work well. The sniper version of these, the PSG 1, are super expensive if real HK, much different than G3, and as accurate an SR25, more or less. Heavy as hell. The in between, the MSG90, if it performs well and is priced reasonably, it'd be a good choice I'd think if you dig these rifles. PSG1 is a sniper rifle, MSG90 is more a sniper/SDM rifle. Then there's the various G3's they sell and they sell a LOT. They're basically the DSA of HK's. Have 5.56 and 9mm too. Hard to say these are updated or upgraded though since these versions have all existed for a long, long time and HK doesn't really do the .308 HK91 family anymore save the MP5's..
The G3 based platforms have a pretty dedicated following from those in the transferable machinegun community. Buy a little H shaped piece of metal and you can now run 20+ different guns in Full auto, from big beltfeds to compact pistols and everything inbetween.
So if you are into transferable machine guns, you get the part and then a whole stable of HK roller locked guns and move the part between whatever you want to shoot Full auto at the time.
 

flyer

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Apr 25, 2018
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Yeah, I get where you are coming from, but having been army I get where sandwarrior is coming from too. He's former military too and very much knows his shit, just so you know. It's an argument of semantics and you're both right.

The SA58 above originally came in STG58 configuration and was an STG58 with the obligatory US parts (which were actually better made than the originals in most cases, like a new trigger group) and a new SA58 marked upper. I got it for $800. But little is left of the original rifle now and it's worth a good deal more.

But if you wanted a quality STG58 clone, what I'd do is be patient first, then look around everyday for a new or used DSA STG58 built on a SA58 upper like mine. Look for one built before 2006 or 2008; they ran out of new Austrian Steyr barrels around this time and started using new DSA replacements. Or you could buy or build a new one with rails or whatever. FWIW, the scope mount I have (I actually have 2, a black spare) is the best scope mount made for the FAL, hands down.
DSA does make a nice FAL upper but it seems like Dave Silvaggio is a juicer meathead the way he started putting in HGH ads inside his packages.

Of course the best way to build a FAL is to get a really nice kit with a good matching barrel and put it on a nice upper. My first was a mix and match kit but it has a STG 58 barrel cut down to para length, Tapco furniture, I think a new in wrap SRA marked lower and all of the small parts refinished. I put it on an Imbel upper.

After that I started going for theme builds, an Imbel Imbel with all wood furniture, an Argentine para, G1s, an Izzy HB and a few Imbel kits stacked away.

It's a lot harder to make a nice M1A. The Springfield's are built on cast receivers so a Norinco is actually a better M1A to start with. There are a few expensive receiver options but then you need an expensive parts kit and that only gets you to USGI quality, if you want better, bend over.

It's a good point that the Cetmes are good to use as a machine gun but I think that would be more fun in the down sized 5.56 versions and MP5 variants.

One counterpoint, FALs have gotten expensive to the point that I'm building LR308s now. The reduced prices and increased selection of LR308 compatible parts over the last 3-4 years has made it easy to build up a reliable, accurate and ergonomic .308 class semi-auto rifle for less than an OK FAL build.

When I got in to FALs they were cheaper to build than an AR15 but things are a lot different now. I kind of shelved most of my FAL projects when ARs became obtainable in California and then cheap. I even tried a few AK builds.

Still, for what they are, FAL is the high water mark for battle rifles when rifles were made of forged steel and wood.
 

flyer

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Apr 25, 2018
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Yery nice, I have a couple G1 kits on G1 marked DSA uppers. I'm not aware of any provenance beyond G1 on my kits except they have the chrome lined barrels which I think were German made replacement parts.

Of course plain steel barrels are just fine for most applications.
 
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