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A while back I posted what would be a good "battle rifle" . I have narrowed my choices down to a few, but Im still doing my homework. Im staying away from the .223 round(which eliminated the AR,SIG556,M4 platforms I was considering) Galils were my #1 choice but there outrageously expensive. So forget that. ..that much I do know.
I have owned AK's in the past, unfortunantly I sold the ones I had, but I never owned a FAL.
I know groupings with the AK are not the greatest in the world, when I had mine I was able to hold about 3-4" groups at 100 yards on the average with surplus ammo and further out the groups started opening up considerably.
I hear that FAL's will hold better groups from reports to 2" at 100 and 3-4" at 200 yards. Again, I wont hold these reports to be true, its only what I have heard and read.

The more I think about this, I am after reliability and ruggedness and the first 2 that come to mind are the AK and the FAL. Accuracy is an issue but reliability and ruggedness is more important to me.
The AK is robust and can take a licking(speaking first hand here)..from those of you who own FALS what can you say in regards to that?
--Both have lethal knockdown power.
--Which of the 2 have issues with spare part avaiability? --or is that even an issue with either rifle. Been away from AK's for a while,so I dont know whats going to happen in 08 when the bans start up again on this and that. I hear that AK parts will no longer be importable if the ban sets again. I fear the FAL will suffer the same issues. I beleive however the DSA FAL is a 100% MADE IN USA rifle..I dont know..
--AK ammo is cheaper than .308--is the FAL choosy about its ammo??
--I like the sites of the FAL better than the AK
--Which is easier to take down and work on? I know the AK is childsplay....What about the FAL?
--Which is more controlable when firing--the AK or FAL? I know about the AK.
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Here is what Im looking at ----


--Im looking at trying to find an Arsenal SAM-7 AK rifle(milled receiver)
--Or the DSA SA58 either with standard barrel or the tactical model.
--XCR in 7.62x39
--Still not ruling out the M14(its big though) not handy like the AK or a tactical FAL.

If I did choose the XCR in 7.62x39---- Can it take a licking like the AK or FAL?
Can you throw mud in the receiver,submerge it in dirt,run over it with a truck--will it still go BANG? An AK will and I think a FAL will also. I knw from what I have heard here that it is more accurate than both the AK and the FAL.

What concerns me about the XCR in 7.62x39--
---What about parts avaiability down the road lets say 4-5 years from now maybe longer,are the parts universal?. For instance --example--a Hungarian AK gas rod will work in any other made AK?
---If the rifle needs work that I cannot do--is it easy to find someone to work on it? Customer support?
--What parst will more than likely need replacing on a XCR down the road and will they be avaialble or do you buy the spares now?

What would the best rifle to have if the SHTF.......

Im looking ahead here...what would be the best battle rifle from the choices I have narrowed it down to?

thanks for looking and look forward to your input.
 

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I think you know the response you will get on this forum ;)
 

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Robinson is always good. And maybe you could just buy parts ahead of time to have extra.
If you're concerned about caliber maybe think about the 6.8. Yes it's expensive but I think it will be the one to stay around.
How much is your spending limit on a gun? Maybe look at the POF in 308. Just a thought.
 
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You never really mentioned what your intended use was.

in general you can expect a gun that will shoot 2" at 100 to shoot 4" at 200, 6" at 300, 8" at 400, 10" at 500 etc. All guns will do this. the group your gun shoots will determine how large it will be at range and it will ALWAYS be larger as you go out further. this is why people use MOA (minutes of angle) as that will tell you the size of your group at any given range.
for example a 2 MOA gun will print 2" at 100 or 1/2" at 25 yards or 4" at 200 yards.
the 4MOA AK will still be able to hit a man reliably at out to 500 yards where it's grouping is 20" or the width of a mans shoulders.

being a huge AK fan, I'll vote AK all day long for your question. I learned how to use the AK from a russian, so I have a different understanding of it's employment and capabilities than most american users.

I would seriously consider spending the money to have a custom AK built and accurized. Jim Fuller Makes the finest AK's I have seen, and he can do things like tighten headspace, crown barrel, cryo treat etc. that can really tighten up the groups from an AK. Personally I'd love to have a 2" ak.

the FAL is a great gun, but if you want to go with the 308 then I'd take a serious look at the XCR-M coming out.

heres my theory:
200 or less the 4 MOA AK in 762x39 with 2moa red dot scope
200-600 the 2 MOA M14 or FAL in 308 low power scope (2-10x)
600 and beyond the 1MOA 300 Win mag in as bolt action sniper. scoped 3-18x

I call it the 4 MOA 30 cal rule of halves
 

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What advantage does the AK have over the XCR in 7.62x39 other than ubiquity of parts?

The XCR on the other hand is more versatile (conversion kits), designed and built locally and more accurate than the AK.

Or am I missing something?
 

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XCR will have bolts that "might" come loose. In the SHTF scenario will I have loctite available? Or will I even have a 3/8" wrench available? Also there is the availablilty of mags, right now I can own at least 5 AK mags for $60. How much are 5 XCR mags going to cost me? $150?

FAL is AK like reliability but with the ergo's just as good as an XCR or AR. So FAL would be my choice.. but if you had to settle for a $350 Romanian WASR-10 AK, it will more than do the job.
 
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What advantage does the AK have over the XCR in 7.62x39 other than ubiquity of parts?

The XCR on the other hand is more versatile (conversion kits), designed and built locally and more accurate than the AK.

Or am I missing something?
-The AK is a robust and time proven and perfected design (60 years worth of all climate battleground R&D). The XCR simply cannot claim that.
-mags are ubiqitous and cheap and very tough. the XCR cannot say that either
-The AK starts at $850 for a good one the XCR starts at almost twice that.
-The AK doesnt need spare parts because they simply just do not break, The XCR can't really say that either (yet).
-the AK is a simple and soldier proof design, the XCR requires a high level of operator maintenance and knowledge (more than even the AR or M14, closer to the FAL actuallly).

the XCR is caliber convertable and more accurate which are the ONLY two advantages it has over an AK. if you think about it a caliber conversion that costs close to what an AK costs really isnt much of an advantage tho is it? and that leaves only accuracy which then could beg the "practical accuracy" question for the "software before hardware" folks (training vs. gear).

Dont get me wrong, the XCR has the potential to be a great gun, but it will never be an AK.
 

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Tough Choices All - You will have to "give up" something with each choice.

AK - I own a KREBS 03S in 7.62x39. It is THE most accurate AK I have ever shot. Downside is it COSTS as much as an AR. Most accuracy issues are due to the AMMUNITION. With quality ammo the AK can shoot good groups. The KREBS AK is tight as hell, uses a Russian made AK receiver and barrel, and has a Galil style safety on the grip where it should be. Better have ammo saved as in a SHTF situation you won't be able to shop for it.:2cents:

FN-FAL - I own two. Great caliber choice, in one heavy assed package. You won't hide this one under your car seat. You won't carry as much ammo, but then one well placed shot should do the trick. Ammo available most anywhere although can be expensive. :2cents:

XCR - The best of both worlds. Caliber can be changed to suit your needs, ammo availability. Small enough to hide under your car seat. Uses readily available AR mags and goodies. If you have a 6.8 0r 6.5, you will need to reload for this if the bank roll is not thick. In 7.62x39 this should prove very accurate. Again you will need to stock up on ammo. :2cents:

While I would not hesitate taking either the KREBS or the FAL to do battle, I would choose the XCR. My gun case holds the caliber change kits along with my XCR. It gives me a caliber choice to fit the situation or ammo availability problem. :2cents: ;D ;D ;D
 

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For me here in the US, the FAL. It can be used in close or out far and despite the cost, you can always get .308 ammo.

Were I living in Asia, Eastern Eurpor, Latin America or Africa I'd take the AK.

In a SHTF scenario, here, the FAL, Abroad the AK.

I wouldn't use a .223 unless I was close in and had Full-auto as an option. My .223 rifles are for fun plinking ofr for my wife to use.

One round of .308 usually does the trick and I can get more range out of the caliber. When I used to conduct operations in bandit country, I carried my service rifle and an AK folder as a backup. nuff said.
 

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If money isn't an issue get both. You'll end up doing it anyway.

I have both and won't be getting rid of either.
 

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When I first started out I wanted an AK, an AR, and a FAL. 28 social rifles bought and sold later, I have ended up an AK, an AR,a FAL, and an M1 Carbine. I'm assuming you are looking for a social/general purpose oh crap rifle. I think you are on the right track with going 30 caliber. Here was my criteria:

1) ability to shoot through intermediate cover
2) ability to deliver sustained fire
3) abilty to deliver a powerful cartridge
4) ability to take medium size game
5) manageable recoil
6) reliability is king
7) availability of parts/magazines

So basically, I ended up with a DSA FAL (an STG 58 with full gas system) and a krebs ak. Both are excellent and pass the above criteria well. For general us, the AK is the first I would go for. It recoils less, handles fast, hold more rounds, and is more compact. In fact it lives in a tennis racket bag.

I'm marginally concerned with accuracy, but its way down my list. As a survival rifle you are likely going to be engaging targets at close to medium range. If your rifle can hold 3 inches at 100 yards, it is plenty accurate for civilian defensive use. There may be outlyers but if your target generally has to havce means, intent and opportunity to do you harm in order to justify lethal force. Being able to discern those elements at long range is pretty unlikely. Even if the gun is very accurate, I have not seen many folks who can run a couple hundred yards, and then shoot more accurately then 3moa.

If you go with a FAL, you will be paying alot for ammo for it. Can you afford to practice with it and get really good. 308 is 40 cents a round! My FAL is not getting much use these days.
 

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Damien, how do you like your Krebs? It's a lot of money to spend on an AK, but I sureley do love mine. One very tite AK with all the bells and whistles, eh? Do you reload for it? 0 - 200 (and a little beyond) I go with my Krebs 03S. :2cents:
 

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I like it. Ergonimcally and performance wise, it works great. That said, it works about as well as my Vector underfolder which ran be 550 bucks. It has proven to be stone reliable. I've had 3 KTR's and they all worked great. I've taught a couple of rifle courses with them and the reliability in the fine volcanic dust of yakima has been truly jaw dropping. They're great but now that other ak makers are making rail systems that work, I'd be hard pressed to buy anothe one.
 

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Here is some gun porn motivation for you!

DSA STG-58 16" Para


My cheap, but loads of fun WASR
 
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SLVR.
did you have any issues getting the irons sighted in on that FAL? I heard that the shorter guns have issues and shoot way high.
 

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Damien, The KREBS is top dollar, but you get what you pay for. I like the Galil style safety and give a+ to the irons. Plus it has yet to "hickup" on anything its fed. :2cents: >:D :duh:
 

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MIR,

I have some time to kill.

I will first have to say asking a question as to which rifle is better than another is totally subjective the each persons experience, training, size, location, situation...flat out everything. I think it's impossible to answer your question. You are the one qualified to answer that question.

To answer your questions based on MY experiences:
MIR said:
--Both have lethal knockdown power.Yes, but one is better at longer ranges.
--Which of the 2 have issues with spare part avaiability? --or is that even an issue with either rifle. Been away from AK's for a while,so I dont know whats going to happen in 08 when the bans start up again on this and that. I hear that AK parts will no longer be importable if the ban sets again. I fear the FAL will suffer the same issues. I beleive however the DSA FAL is a 100% MADE IN USA rifle..I dont know..AK's are almost practically made in the US by several companies and many NOS parts are available far more than FAL parts.
--AK ammo is cheaper than .308--is the FAL choosy about its ammo??No.
--I like the sites of the FAL better than the AKAnswered your own question.
--Which is easier to take down and work on? I know the AK is childsplay....What about the FAL?Both are childsplay once you learn. I haven't come accross a weapon that wasn't childsplay to take down to include the M242 25mm chain gun.
--Which is more controlable when firing--the AK or FAL? I know about the AK. Da AK.
AND...

MIR said:
If I did choose the XCR in 7.62x39---- Can it take a licking like the AK or FAL? No one knows that yet. The XCR is the finest combat rifle in my opinion but it has yet to get the full bitch slap experience. I'd say it is but they will be few and far between getting one and mags are a big issue.

Can you throw mud in the receiver,submerge it in dirt,run over it with a truck--will it still go BANG? I seriously doubt either gun will withstand being run over by a truck. Both use thin receiver covers. You can get a beefy picatinny cover for the fal that might hold up better, but I guarantee something will break. There was that guy that really thrashed a FAL. Remember, results may vary!!! See below re: Israelis experiences.An AK will and I think a FAL will also. I knw from what I have heard here that it is more accurate than both the AK and the FAL. Da FAL is more accurate. besides ammo is a bigest factor in accuracy and 7.62x39 is not intended to be produced for accuracy. It's accurate enough.

What concerns me about the XCR in 7.62x39--
---What about parts avaiability down the road lets say 4-5 years from now maybe longer,are the parts universal?. For instance --example--a Hungarian AK gas rod will work in any other made AK? Most parts are interchangeable for both. The biggest differences are between Chinese and E. European parts. You need to do individual research here. But, yes, most parts are interchangeable for both, the Ak and FALs (don't confuse by thinking the FALs and Ak are interchangeable).
---If the rifle needs work that I cannot do--is it easy to find someone to work on it? Customer support?There are more AK smiths than FALs if that is what you are asking.
--What parst will more than likely need replacing on a XCR down the road and will they be avaialble or do you buy the spares now? Ask RA or search this site. It has been asked and answered at least twice.

AK vs. FAL. Let me put it this way:

FAL
-Known as the right arm of the free world. I think it was for a pretty friken good reason.
-I personally have seen it currently in use by 3rd World crap holes Federal Police Force.
-Hasn't been around as long as the AK, but a lot closer in age than the rest.
-Made to chamber the 7.62 NATO by US demand, who in turn dumps the T-48 for the heavier M14.
-On the negative experience, Israelis complained lack of reliability on part of the FAL in sandy enviroments (note I always refer to enviromental factors on previous posts)
-Israel then decide to practically copy the Valmet, even using Valmet receivers at first, which is an AK design, but in 308.
-But then dumps that because they were too heavy for far least reliable in a sandy enviroment, but free, M16's and M4's.

I look at all that and figured Captain Pickard couldn't have said it better:



I guess economics prevailed ::)




AK
-Known as the "Weapon for Revolutionaries"
-Currently used by nearly all 3rd world crap holes and half of 2nd world pee holes with no intent to replace it, and most popular, and yada yada....
-She's an oldie, definitely a goodie.
-Chambered in an ideal intermediate cartridge, but in a rifle that is not ideal in accuracy.
-On negative experience, well ask soldiers who've been shot with one.
-Can be entirely made in any modest shop or well equipped garage.

Here is a good perspective re: da AK, da M16, and da Nagant. It's funny, entertaining, and very informative:

http://7.62x54r.net/MosinID/MosinHumor.htm


My personal take on the FAL;

-It's a light heavy hitter, as in 7.62x51 heavy hitter.
-I favor the FAL over the M1A and G3. Far easy to handle than the rest.
-Years beyond it's time when introduced up until these last few years. That's a good run!
-Because it's a 'light heavy hitter' it is not a choice for mass zombie a'killin', but in an E&E (escape and evade) slvr sfr has the right idea with the 16" barrel. That is exactly what I have and would not part unless a SCAR H replaces it...maybe. Definitely my PTR91KP will go. Or XCR-H, we shall see.
-308 ammo is not available the way I see it. What is left is what is left. Either get into reloading or spend the same amount you spent on your gun a year to shoot it. A sad fact!

My take on the AK;

-For about 0 bucks, a zombie killing machine. Unfortunately the zombies must be closer than you would do so with a FAL.
-If it absolutely, positively, has to kill zombies, it will go bang.
-Light, short, and compact. Funny how we used to make fun of short rifles THEN only to revert to do the same shit with the M4. So it is 'more' concealable.
-Ammo cheapest and very available...for now. In other words, get it while you can!
-Higher capacity mags.
-Can be repaired in the field with a pair of pliers, a rock, and a welding rod hooked up to a battery (good luck!) or just find yourself a welder.
-You have to lube it? Annually?

I know I don't answer your question because I, nor anyone here, or any other forum, can't. Both have excellent qualities with a few negatives. Just as comparing most other combat rifles.

As far as to which "groups" better, at what ranges, from these 'range reports' posted all over da intraweb by cyber snipers is pure fantasy combat. If tac driving is what you are looking for, go bolt action, and spend a lot of money. Then train exclusively to be a sugical sniper and forget combat weapons. Sniping is a total different realm. I believe we have a few trained snipers in this forum. They can answer that better than I can.

Combat rifles are not going to be tac drivers. They are meant to put enough rounds downrange accurately enough. Yes, some are more accurate than others and as I mention before ammo is the biggest factor along with barrel length and design. If you can hit a torso sized target at 300 meters standing, kneeling, sitting, and prone unsuported with iron sights at least 25 out of 30 rounds, you are doing good. If you are getting shot at all you have to do is hit it once, preferably within your first 3 shots. Try doing that while that target is jumping around and running for cover.

Whether it shoots 2" groups at 200 vs. a 5" group is irrevelant when you shoot a bad guy. Either you hit him center mass or in the pelvis. He might survive the CM hit because he has good body armor, or he won't get up because you just shattered his pelvis with that lousy low shot. Maybe even kill him b/c he bled out from a femoral shot. Yes we would like to have that accurate shot but in the real world a hit is a hit and you keep on hitting him until he no longer is a threat.

And...
MIR said:
What would the best rifle to have if the SHTF.......
When you add the SHTF factor, well it becomes impossible to say "which is it". There are so many SHTF variables it is mind boggling. What kind of S will H what kind of F? How fast will the F be spinning and how much S will hit it? And will it be lumpy, dry, dark, light, or runny S?

Check out this excellent real life experience posted by Lex and written by FerFAL:

http://xcrforum.com/index.php/topic,423.0.html

That is one senario.

Check out some other posts that are generic advise but are also a guide in a SHFT situation posted by yours truly ;D. No, I'm not the author. However, they are entertaining and very much dead on based on my experiences:

http://xcrforum.com/index.php/topic,293.0.html
http://xcrforum.com/index.php/topic,294.0.html

Here is more good references. Old site, but quite excellent if you look past the tin-foil-hateries:

http://www.savvysurvivor.com/

Specifically this page:

http://www.savvysurvivor.com/scenarios/scenarios.htm

Basically what's in your Brain Housing Group, knowledge, will be your best weapon EEVVARR! That and training.

I'd have to reliably say in an educated guess, when the fecal matter strikes the ocillating pitched blades rotating at a desired RPM that a lot of things will turn to gold while others turn into instant junk. And everything will be subject to availability at hand. Even the 'bestest' (yeah, I know it's not a word) is subject to breakage, wear and tear. The most reliable weapon will crap out, likely just when you have to use it. So small parts spares are a must!

You will have to figure out if getting more than one gun, storing guns and ammo in one place, or putting in cache's all over da hills. Will you have to go mobile are you going to be able to cart 800 lbs of ammo with you? Can your vehicle handle it? Will there be fuel to handle it? It would sure suck if you go "survivalist" on us and stock your basement chockful of water, food, guns, and ammo and your garage with 4x4's, ATV's, lots of fuel in cans all get lost in a house fire or stolen. Waayyy too many variables. I know that I don't have that sort of cash or room to do that. Better learn how to 'obtain' and make do. In fact, besides water, food, fuel, and basic necessities will be extremely short, I'd expect ammo, and weapon repair parts, to include 22LR to be non-existant even in the mildest SHTF situation. Just look at Katrina!!

All I know is by the time I see this coming at me:



Pretty much self explanatory, would you not agree?

Da End!

PS, as stated above, get both.
 

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Quick hi-jack.

Damien,

When you mention 'Yakima vocanic dust', i303/GLOCK MONKEY stares blankly in to the distance with a tear running from one eye and a smile on his face.

Da Yak Attak! YFC baby! I'm all way too familiar with YFC. Besides the dust, they have a nice day followed to wake up to 3 feet of snow, then icy rain, then freezin, then melting turning the whole country side into an endless mud bog, then rain, then digging a fighting position in the rain..and mud...as it fills up with water...then it clears..then the temp drops to 20 degrees. The last five mentioned all within 8 hours. Talk about weapons durability testing!!!!!

Did my time at YAK as mech, light, motorized, and again mech infantry on Bradleys. It sucks being light infantry at YFC. Also the best place to watch F4's drop 500 lb'ers and B52 low altitude drops. And when I mean low altitude I mean being on top of North Umtanum Ridge and looking DOWN on a B52! And my unit was the first to use the MPRC range, moving targets and all.

They should have a series of 'Survivor' show all done at YFC. We'll then see how friken long they'd last. It will be "Survivor" for real!

Me at 17 y/o at YFC circa 1983:



And again at 30 y/o (I'm the one on the left) circa 1995:


(Red flag means we are loaded and ready to go hot. Perfect to repel the Bear Cavalry)

Back to original subject....
 

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Jack,

I haven't had any issues so far. I have shot it at 25 and about 50 yards. It seemed to be on target at those ranges. I've only shot it to function test the rifle. The ranges here in the Dallas area are pretty limited. The longest range is only 100yrds. I haven't had a chance to range it out that far yet. Its on the list of things to do.........

SLVR.
did you have any issues getting the irons sighted in on that FAL? I heard that the shorter guns have issues and shoot way high.
 
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