Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Battle Rifle

While I have shot and enjoyed many firearms my favorite is the battle rifle. When I say battle rifle I mean a rifle firing full power ammo in a semi automatic format.
Full size/power ammo in calibers such as:
308 win or 7.62X51mm Nato
8mm Mauser
I guess many people will argue about what exactly qualifies as a BR but here are a few in my mind.
FN-49 in its many chamberings
M1 Garand
M14 or M1A
HK G3 or HK91

I own a few great ones, I have an FN FAL clone that is my knock around in the truck rifle. It will eat any ammo I put through it. I just recently just shot the last of my slightly tarnished mixed up, and stomped on Israeli surplus that I picked up from century in the 90s. I think I had 10k of that stuff but, at $50 shipped in a 50 cal ammo can one cannot be too picky.
These rifles can do everything that you want. You can hunt damn near any game on this continent with them. In the military arena you can task them as a Designated Marksman rifle (DMR). In my opinion they are great rifles to shoot NRA high power competitions. In fact when was younger there was a guy at my local club who would smoke many of us with an FN-49 in 7mm argentine. IIRC. Plus the simple fact they are just fun to shoot.

My current project is rehabbing a Polytech M14s. It is a great rifle and it never suffered from the soft bolt problems that I feel were mostly made up bull shit from gunwriters. More to the point Polytech never really set up a media PR organization here in the states. While Springfield Armory has one and well you draw your own conclusions. Don't get me wrong I am not bashing Springfield one of the only rifles I miss is an M1A bush rifle I sold in 1998 that was amazing in how accurate it was.
If you doubt the commie versions of this rifle just give Ron Smith or Tim Straight a call and ask them. If you have no clue who they are well google is your friend.
Back to this rifle, it is a Polytech that I fitted (well Tim Straight did) with a GI bolt, trigger group, and I have it sitting in an Ugly E2 stock. I left the original chrome lined barrel, op rod, and gas cylinder. My next step is to fill in the FA selector, bed the action to the stock, fit a standard recoil pad to it and then paint it somehow.
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Of course this has been an ongoing project for me due to the fact I have over 11 guns in various stages of what I consider completion.

Now this next part is the one where I will piss many of you off.

The Battle rifle I dislike the most is the G3. The delayed roller lock system is horrible for a civilian shooter. It destroys the brass, due to the fluted chamber. Yes you can reload it but it reduces the life of them plus it makes it ugly. Very few ways to mount optics. (big one for me) The recoil is greater than others due to the method of operation. Plus my biggest complaint is it is a bitch to clean. I have a fetish for clean guns and the roller block system is not compatible with that. All that being said the G3 is almost AK reliable. Plus the system in use for a subgun ala the MP5 is amazing.


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