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Old December 19, 2010, 11:16 AM   #26
Snowmanx7
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Looks good. Wood seems to be in pretty good shape as well, from the picture anyway. Now go shoot it.
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Old December 19, 2010, 12:15 PM   #27
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Now go shoot it.
But of course.

Ordered some Prvi and some spare mags, hopefully the ammo will get here soon, I would like to take it to the range during the holidays.

The Prvi was the only ammo I could find, and it seems to get good reviews from MAS 49/56 owners, but I also found one complaint of a slam-fire with it.

Are the primers Prvi uses in their 7.5 ammo hard enough for my rough frenchman?

Do you folks have any tips for avoiding slam-fires with this rifle?
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Old December 19, 2010, 12:23 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by B. Lahey
The Prvi was the only ammo I could find, and it seems to get good reviews from MAS 49/56 owners, but I also found one complaint of a slam-fire with it.
The MAS-49 has a massive firing pin to make sure it pops hard military primers. Slamfires are not uncommon with commercial Prvi or FNM ammo. Mine gave Oleg Volk a pretty spectacular bruise on his right thumb with the bolt handle when he chambered a round.

Titanium firing pins were available for a time, but I haven't seen any for a while. Others have reported success in lightening the original FP.

I'd put one round in the mag the first time you let the bolt fly, just in case...
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Old December 19, 2010, 02:11 PM   #29
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IIRC, you can also file down the firing pin a tad to make it less likely to slam fire. I've never had to do it but spares are pretty plentiful on Gunbroker. I think I even have 2-3 lying around.
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Old December 19, 2010, 09:04 PM   #30
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I have never heard exactly how those conversions were done, but I sure know you can't use a reamer to make a big hole smaller or a long hole shorter. Either they set the barrels back or they used some kind of chamber jug or sleeve, and I don't like either idea very much.

Jim
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Old December 19, 2010, 10:43 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Jim Keenan
Either they set the barrels back...
If I'm remembering rightly, they set the barrels back and re-cut the chambers, but cheaped out on replacing reamers. The few converted ones I've seen had chambers as rough as a cob.
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Old December 19, 2010, 11:08 PM   #32
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If I'm remembering rightly, they set the barrels back and re-cut the chambers, but cheaped out on replacing reamers. The few converted ones I've seen had chambers as rough as a cob.
That is exactly what they did. As a consequence, they had to cut down and reassemble the handguards to accommodate the shorter barrels. I think the barrels were turned down exactly 9/16". You can find some with decent chambers- meaning the reamers were in fairly good shape when the new chamber was cut. But they used the reamers until they were smoking and on fire, so many of the chambers are crap. This will affect accuracy and impede extraction. No sleeve was used in the process.
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Old December 20, 2010, 06:57 AM   #33
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Lighten up Francois, I've been to Verdun, I know what the poilu was capable of

Ils non passerant pas is on the statute on Le Morte Homme. It's Holy. You been there?
Yes, Willie, I've been there many times. 3 ancestors of mine were killed there and have no known grave. I've also had the opportunity to visit Pearl Harbor during a Hawaii visit in 2006. Stood right above the USS Arizona I did, saw the names of the sailors on the monument. On a very calm day, the faint fumes of that oil slowly bubbling from the ship can also be detected. Never once, not then or now, has it ever crossed my mind to crack a "joke" at the expense of those entombed.

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only if you're trying to avoid or ignore the point.
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Old December 20, 2010, 04:43 PM   #34
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That's a nice looking little rifle. I've seen them around here for about $250.

To my knowledge every nations military have had their rifles dropped from time to time. The US for one shouldn't be pointing fingers.
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Old December 20, 2010, 04:54 PM   #35
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Never once, not then or now, has it ever crossed my mind to crack a "joke" at the expense of those entombed.
I'm not cracking a joke at those entombed, Im cracking a joke at those whose hands were up, and more importantly, their leaders.

Read "Verdun and the Folly of Nationalism" by Ian Ormsby and we can continue by PM


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Old December 20, 2010, 06:39 PM   #36
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my mas 49/56 in 7.5 french, its a super shooter with privi ammo. i had two in new rearsenal condition and sold one to make the one i kept for my self cheaper, i never had any slam fires.eastbank.

Last edited by eastbank; May 26, 2011 at 10:49 AM.
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Old December 20, 2010, 08:23 PM   #37
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Well, since we're linking to pictures and stuff now, here's my write-up on my MAS-49/56, with photos by Oleg Volk...
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Old December 20, 2010, 08:55 PM   #38
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Hi, SwampYankee,

So they also had to cut down the gas tube, but that would be no real problem as I don't think the increase in port pressure would be very great. I guess it is a feasible conversion. I was afraid of something like what was done to the Chilean 7x57 rifles, where the Chilean government drilled out the back of the barrel and inserted a big plug, then rebored and re-rifled the barrel and chambered the plug to 7.62 NATO. It works, but I am not fond of the idea.

Jim
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Old December 21, 2010, 05:28 PM   #39
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here's my write-up on my MAS-49/56
Excellent, nice piece.
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Old December 22, 2010, 11:55 PM   #40
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I've had 2 MAS 49/56's converted to .308. The first one had a perfect chamber but a pitted barrel. Nonetheless, it was flawless in function. I sold it because I was not thrilled about the accuracy- no surprise based on the poor condition of the bore. My second MAS has a perfect bore but a hack job chamber. As a result, it would not extract. I smoothed out the chamber with a dowel, a fire formed cartridge and some Flitz, opening it up a tad and it is now completely reliable. The only issue I have with the .308 conversion is that that .308 is higher pressure than 7.5 French. I have never had a commercial/military round fail to function but I prefer to handload to levels that more closely approximate the 7.5 pressure.

I could shoot this gun all day, it is a tough as nails, compact and reliable. And it has some very nice sights. Some day I'll fork over the cash for an M1A but until then, I'm going to enjoy pounding the heck out of my 49/56. If Century had been careful about these and done them right, I have no doubt that the conversions would run you $700 a pop. Prices are higher than the $250 they used to be but the guns really are gems if you put a little effort into them.
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Old December 24, 2010, 02:36 PM   #41
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Mags and ammo showed up. Merry Christmas to me!

Range report to follow at some point...
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Old December 24, 2010, 03:23 PM   #42
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Plus you need to learn to say "I surrender" in French. And never put it near a Mauser, it will run away
LMAO
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Old December 24, 2010, 10:11 PM   #43
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WildandthefamaslookslikeatrombonenotarifleAlaska
Well, supposedly the French soldiers have nicknamed it "the bugle".
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Old December 25, 2010, 03:06 PM   #44
Gator Weiss
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Good rifle, but needs some attention sometimes

A friend scored one in West Texas in a garage sale of all places. Learned a few things about the rifle during that time. Shot it extensively and worked on it some. A number of shooters that come to understand these rifles really enjoy them. They quickly become "keepers" - one of the ones you dont part with because it is so handy to have on hand. The one we found was chambered .308 Winchester / 7.62x51 Nato. I think all or most of them we find in USA most probably are.

This is a very solid rifle. Almost as solid as an M14. Just almost. Certainly shorter and a little bit lighter. These are fairly good steel. Pretty good wood. Built solid. One of the best West Texas truck guns you are ever going to find. Good for coyote or deer. Probably has some other possibilities as well. 7.62 Nato (.308 Winch) is one of the greatest cartridges the world will ever see. It shoulders quickly, targets quickly and spits out some high powered rounds very quickly. Comfortable to shoot, and easy to keep on a target while firing the rifle. You wont be shooting "sniper" grade groups at 250 yards with it, but I think you will be happy with the groups you do get from it. It is accurate enough for iron-sight hunting.

Here is where some minor problems arise with this rifle. The chambers, when you find them, tend to have some striations in them, possibly left over from machine tools at the initial manufacturing. You have to send it to the gunsmith to have the chamber polished out and cleaned up. Some of them, the chambers I am told, are often found slightly undersized. I dont know why. Keep in mind it doesnt cost much to tune up one of these rifles. Cases stick in them like crazy, until you tune up the chamber and polish up the chamber mouth as well. Sometimes it takes a gunsmith to do this, because it is more than just scrubbing the chamber clean.

Once they are tuned up a little bit, they shoot well enough to hunt with or to plink with. Will feed milspec ammo very reliably, really kicks out the empties. Will feed remington factory loads just as well.

These are not the easiest guns to find lately. There seemed to more of them out there a few years ago. There were many from individuals who wanted to dump them because they didnt understand the rifle needed a only little bit of attention to make it a very reliable shooter.

If you can find one, keep it. Hang on to it. Plenty of 7.62x51 out there. If you had to have a moderately priced semi-auto rack-grade military rifle in a popular American military caliber, this is rifle will fit the need well enough.
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Old December 25, 2010, 06:37 PM   #45
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Gator,

I think all your chamber problems are from the Century stooges doing the conversion. Although I don't own one, if I found a good deal on an original 7.5 rifle like the OP did I'd prob be all over it. .308 is a great round but I think most conversions just weren't done with the most care. I agree they do have a great feel to them.

As far as the common chambering, most I've seen lately have been in 7.5, just out of my price range. As far as I know, barring some custom jobs, all the .308's were done by Century.

-J-
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Old December 26, 2010, 02:28 PM   #46
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You have probably solved the riddle of the rifle.

Hey, you probably hit the nail on the head. Your information seems right on the mark. Thanks! I didnt know much about Century.
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Old December 27, 2010, 05:45 PM   #47
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Range Report #1

Took it out today for an informal function-fire.

Loaded one round and let the bolt go with great trepidation... Nothing. Whew, thank goodness.

Fired the round without incident. Mild recoil, and the hunk of snow that I had placed the front sight on exploded impressively. Ejection was stout, I saw a flash of brass up in the atmosphere as the casing took flight for parts unknown; it may have reached orbit.

Moved on to a few rounds in the mag, and those went smoothly as well, so I went ahead with full mags. No issues.

It's a sweet little rifle to shoot. I have not shot for groups yet, but the bits of snow I aimed at were certainly not safe. No slam fires, no doubles, no malfunctions, nothing but shooting enjoyment. I like the sights for destroying lumps of snow, but the front post may be a bit wide for fine target shooting. I dunno, we'll see once I get it to the range for a proper session.

I like this rifle a lot!
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Old December 27, 2010, 05:53 PM   #48
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I like this rifle a lot!
I bet you prefer Beaujolais et Brie to Reisling und Altenburger Ziegenkäse.

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Old December 27, 2010, 06:17 PM   #49
Tamara
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Originally Posted by B. Lahey
I have not shot for groups yet, but the bits of snow I aimed at were certainly not safe. No slam fires, no doubles, no malfunctions, nothing but shooting enjoyment.
w00t!

Seriously, I think the MAS-49 is one of the most underrated rifles in... well, in America. It's sure not underrated in the Francosphere, where it enjoys the kind of reverence we Yanks give the M-14...
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Old December 27, 2010, 10:32 PM   #50
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WildAlaska,

I have actually been to Altenburg Germany. Didn't try any Altenburger Ziegenkäse though.
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