FN fun

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Falstaff
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FN fun

Post by Falstaff » September 26th 2018, 12:11pm

This past weekend, the weather being clement, several of us decided to make a military-themed day of it at the local rifle range. I took along my AR, AK, HK and one that seldom gets any "wrist time", my FN 49. My 3 fellow shooters brought similar rifles. It was an opportunity to try out the various accessories and modifications we'd made over the last few months. Over the course of the day we fired roughly 1800 rounds at 100 and 200 yd. (the max for this range) targets. Needless to say we all switched rifles with one another so that everyone had the opportunity to fire everything - although we did try to group them together - 5.56s with 5.56s, 7.62 X 39s with 7.62 X 39s and .308s with .308s so as to compare performance side by side. Just a lovely day - we'd brought a cooler with sandwiches and non-alcoholic beverages (range officers being adverse to Bloody Marys and beer on the firing line). The surprise winner for most fun to shoot was my FN 49 https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... 49left.jpg It's an Egyptian contract (for King Farouk) model in 8mm Mauser (7.92 X 57) that I bought 25 years ago or so from a Century Arms ad in Shotgun News. Century Arms apparently bought all remaining stock of these Egyptian contract rifles as well as any remaining parts. Some were original complete rifles and some were assembled from parts by Century. Mine appears to be original with matching numbers on barrel assembly, bolt and the Egyptian crown crest on the receiver although it has been restocked and has the later production 2 piece firing pin. Looks to have been made in either '52 or '53 by Fabrique Nationale at their Herstal Belgium factory. At the time a buddy and I each bought one and I don't think we paid more than $150 each. Classic Firearms (internet) has been recently offering surplus Hungarian production, non-corrosive primer 8mm for about $8 a 20rnd. box. Needless to say, I picked up a case. The few times I'd fired it previously, I was using some Bulgarian corrosive primered stuff - a real pain in the ass to clean. After adjusting the gas port for proper cycling (it is picky that way) it was throwing rounds down range with excellent accuracy. It's downright pleasant to shoot and despite being a full sized, wooden stocked battle rifle, recoil is surprisingly tame. It is essentially an FN - FAL as far as operating system. It uses a 10 rnd. stripper clip fed fixed magazine. The boys fell in love with it and we blew through the 300 rounds that I brought in short order. I believe every guy at the range came over to take a look. Although designed before WWII, it was already more or less obsolete when it was finally put into production in 1947 as too expensive - having been overtaken by shorter, lighter designs with lots of inexpensively stamped parts and quick change magazines. Probably the last of the old-school fully machined battle rifles - and flat out elegant. We all had one hell of a good day and finished up tired, dirty and despite hearing protection, slightly deaf at a tavern down the road with a pitcher of old fashioneds and the meatloaf special.

Another borrowed pic: https://www.apexgunparts.com/media/cata ... y/FN49.jpg
"Open the pod bay doors, Hal." "I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that."
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Hawk
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Re: FN fun

Post by Hawk » September 26th 2018, 2:31pm

Nice old time stuff. That model had escaped my notice when it was available which I regret. Cosmetically it seems SKS-ish to me. Locally there were FALs aplenty and watching the FN vs. HK debates was grand fun.

One other that performed well beyond expectations were the Swiss K-31s I got a hold of. Whether the credit went to the K-31 or the Swiss surplus 7x55 I couldn't say but they sure shot well. Manual push-pull that looked to be machined like surgical equipment. Note to the larger 21st century version of the human race: no attempt should be made to rapidly cycle the bolt while the weapon is shouldered - it will pop you on the bridge of the nose like a ball peen hammer.

The only thing I've got left from those 03 FFL days is some Czech CZ-52s complete with factory original pot metal shattering firing pins. It seems they're no longer available with full kit for 79.00.

Sounds like a grand time you had.
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Re: FN fun

Post by Falstaff » September 26th 2018, 3:29pm

Hawk wrote:Nice old time stuff. That model had escaped my notice when it was available which I regret. Cosmetically it seems SKS-ish to me. Locally there were FALs aplenty and watching the FN vs. HK debates was grand fun.

One other that performed well beyond expectations were the Swiss K-31s I got a hold of. Whether the credit went to the K-31 or the Swiss surplus 7x55 I couldn't say but they sure shot well. Manual push-pull that looked to be machined like surgical equipment. Note to the larger 21st century version of the human race: no attempt should be made to rapidly cycle the bolt while the weapon is shouldered - it will pop you on the bridge of the nose like a ball peen hammer.

The only thing I've got left from those 03 FFL days is some Czech CZ-52s complete with factory original pot metal shattering firing pins. It seems they're no longer available with full kit for 79.00.

Sounds like a grand time you had.



Out of stock, but I've seen new lots come in about 3 times in the last 6 months. If they're out there, these guys will have 'em https://www.classicfirearms.com/swiss-k ... ine-rifle/
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Re: FN fun

Post by Hawk » September 26th 2018, 5:42pm

They were grand fun but the 7x55 ammo has become thin on the ground. One of your King Farouk models would be nice especially since I've never used one and 8mm Mauser remains relatively common.

A probably apocryphal tale of the CZ-52: It has been suggested that the Czechs were chaffing under mother Russia and this included having to chamber their service pistol for the 7.62x25 Tokarev. The designers of the CZ-52 put together a stout-as-all-hell roller locked breech arrangement which when loaded with the hot Czech subgun ammo would turn a garden variety Tokarev into a grenade. Shipment of the ammo to the motherland proceeded apace.

Personal experience at an indoor range does not contradict the tale - surplus Czech ammo looks like a fireworks display.
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Re: FN fun

Post by Falstaff » September 27th 2018, 6:11am

Hawk wrote:They were grand fun but the 7x55 ammo has become thin on the ground. One of your King Farouk models would be nice especially since I've never used one and 8mm Mauser remains relatively common.

A probably apocryphal tale of the CZ-52: It has been suggested that the Czechs were chaffing under mother Russia and this included having to chamber their service pistol for the 7.62x25 Tokarev. The designers of the CZ-52 put together a stout-as-all-hell roller locked breech arrangement which when loaded with the hot Czech subgun ammo would turn a garden variety Tokarev into a grenade. Shipment of the ammo to the motherland proceeded apace.

Personal experience at an indoor range does not contradict the tale - surplus Czech ammo looks like a fireworks display.



Should you ever decide to seek one out, the Egyptian contract was the largest for the FN 49 with some 32,000 or so delivered, so the Farouk 8mm will be the one you're most likely to run into. Just a side note - one of my bunch is an M14 diehard - even he had high praise for the shootability and accuracy of the FN49.


CZ 50's, 70's, Tokarevs, Radoms etc. - but alas, no CZ 52's. https://www.classicfirearms.com/hand-guns/
"Open the pod bay doors, Hal." "I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that."
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