View Full Version : Request info on MP5 conversion

Johnny Guest
February 14, 2002, 11:50 PM
I may soon have a chance to purchase an MP5 "sear gun" from a private individual and need some background information.

Haven't talked with the owner yet--A mutual acquaintance is trying to get us together. Story I get is that this was, I guess, an HK-94, properly papered and converted to MP5 configuration. The owner messed with it some but has lost interest in recent years and had rather sell it to an appreciative buyer than go through a dealer.

Working presumptions: Gun is well used but not abused. Much original finish but not pristine. Stiff stock, no accessories. I get to do a full inspection of papers and gun, including field stripping. Probably take him out and shoot the gun.

Can you tell me what to look for when I take it apart? Significant wear points? Places where someone might have butchered something? I'm not out to bad mouth his gun, but this is signiuficant money for me, and I wouldn't want to toss it away.

I've heard some scary prices for MP5s, and will not consider HUGE money. What is fair market value for a converted shooter in decent condition? Okay, what would be a bargain price?

No accessories are mentioned thus far. Just in case, though - - What is a good price to allow for "standard capacity" magazines? (Which is what? 32 rounds?)

Sure appreciate any input the membership can provide.


February 15, 2002, 04:02 AM
As with any used gun purchase, check the barrel and the moving parts for signs of wear, cracking and rust. It uses 30 rd magazines and you can still get them for around $40 (last time I looked). Definately take it out shooting.

The nice thing about the HK sear gun is the sear is the registered part and it is located in the reciever, which snaps off the gun easily. You can replace any of the upper parts or buy a whole new upper if you want. This also means you can use your reciever on other HK models. If you can track down one of the semi-auto versions of the MP5K (the SP-89), you can put your reciever on it and have a functional MP5K.

I don't really know what the current prices for the MP5 are. I bought mine about 15 years ago.

February 15, 2002, 04:08 AM

February 15, 2002, 05:21 PM
Look for the usual wear and abuse.

Take it for a test fire, and put a few magazines through it to make sure it works.

Cost varies widely. Pristine guns have asking prices around 8K. Sear guns go for less as this is not true MP5 functionality. Check the usual gun selling sites to get an idea about prices.

Johnny Guest
February 18, 2002, 11:22 AM
Renegade: "Sear guns go for less as this is not true MP5 functionality"

Perhaps I'm using the tern incorrectly, or maybe I got it from my informant. I've also heard term "Bolt gun." Is there any similarity? I heard, years back. about "Good conversions," as at a place in Oklahoma--To where you couldn't tell 'em from a REEEL MP5. Factory parts, etc.

If you can't detect it, I don't have a firm grasp of the topics. I can shoot and field strip most of the common HK stuff, but I have shot only perhaps 1K rounds thru various MP5s.

Again, thanks for any information.


February 18, 2002, 12:01 PM
The Complete Reference on the Legal NFA Conversion of HK Firearms. (http://www.hkpro.com/hkconversions.htm)

This describes the various methods of conversion.

February 18, 2002, 03:22 PM
MP5's come in the form of either a registered receiver or sear. No bolts. An example of a bolt gun is an Uzi, which can have a registered bolt or receiver. The term "sear gun" for an MP5 is correct.

Due to the market frenzy, there is no longer a distinction between registered items (receiver, sear, etc.) and they are selling in the same price range. If your seller has had the conversion done professionally and its complete, the gun is worth eight thousand dollars on the open market. If you're going to shoot the gun, that's an added bonus, because most guns are bought and sold sight unseen.

If it works, hash out a price and buy it. If you see things wrong with the gun, start deducting, but keep in mind that its a machine gun and real dollars don't factor in. Barrel is worn, missing parts or loose parts and furniture, just factor that in. But when you add it all up, don't go over the eight thousand mark and you'll be fine. If he want substantially less, your gain. Wants more, pass.

No such thing as a true MP5 MG. They are all conversions of one sort or another.

Johnny Guest
February 19, 2002, 11:53 AM
Hkmp5sd - - - Yeah, the interchangablility factor crossed my mind as well. I know one guy who SAYS he swaps same trigger group back and forth between HK-91, -93, and SP-89 guns. I’ve never seen this, though.

RenegadeX - -
Your link to the reference is of great value, and I appreciate it very much. If nothing else, it reveals to me the depth and breadth of my ignorance on this topic. Before I finished reading, I was about to conclude that I should just pass on the whole MP5 category.

I’m now of the opinion that I will print out the whole article and have it at hand, along with proper measuring devices, as I inspect the gun. (If and when this takes place.) I’m also in the process of looking for knowledgeable acquaintances who will help me in the inspection process. From some preliminary checking around, I think the majority of MP5 owners just paid their money and bought a gun, without a great deal of knowledge of the subject. And most of them are pretty happy with their purchases, as long as the gun runs and they don’t have to replace parts. From reading that article, I fear that some of the current owners will be aghast when they discover the possible complications.

ViLLain– Your comments are extremely valuable, as well. If the gun runs properly, and if I can get the whole, registered item for WELL under the 8K figure–Realistically, for me, I think well under half that– then I can afford to gamble on it.

Yet another example of the rich sources of information found within The Firing Line.
Thanks again, all.


February 19, 2002, 12:44 PM
Yes, it is wide ranging. I personally think the investment angle is over. Maximum appreciation has been attained. The days of buying the HK-94 for under $1000, upgrading it to NFA for say $2k ($3k invested), and watching it go to say $8k are over. If you buy it at $8k, do not expect it to go to $15-20K in the same time period. And with the economy in a downturn, the number of potential buyers is reduced.

Second, I buy my guns to shoot them, not look at them. So a little wear (not abuse), here and there is a good thing to me, as it lowers the cost, and the parts are replaceable. The most important thing to me is a 100% reliable gun, hence the need to put a few magazines through it to verify a quality conversion.

Keep in mind one of the most respected HK gunsmiths, Murray Urbach, lives in Garland, so it is not too much trouble to bring it to him for fixing.

Good Luck.

February 19, 2002, 01:16 PM
Johnny Guest,

I have seen the swapping, but have not done it with mine. My gun is a Ciener conversion and I bought it directly from him. While at his shop, the swapping was demonstrated. I really wanted to get an SP-89 for myself, but due to laziness, I let the time slide by and the assault weapons garbage made them cost more than they were worth to me.