View Full Version : surplus sten parts kits?

June 16, 2002, 05:48 AM
I dont own a buzzgun (darn) but have a question you may be able to answer:

What's the difference between Sten Mark II and III?

reason I ask: I see parts kits all over the place for both. The Mark III's are like 30 bucks, the II's are around 150 !
Why the big difference in price?
Is it just collectability? rarity? some improvement in design? I dunno???

Also, why do all the ads say "all NFA rules apply" if they are sliced up and non-functional when assembled?

And, finally: which parts are they missing? (i.e. which parts would I need a dummy for to make it look good enough to display?)

thanks 1,000,000

James K
June 16, 2002, 08:39 PM
What is missing is the whole middle section of the receiver. It is possible to build a nice looking dummy using solid aluminum or even wood. I would be careful using tubular steel as you could be accused of trying to manufacture a machinegun.

The difference between the Mk II and the Mk III is that the Mk II has a detachable barrel and barrel jacket and a magazine housing that is a separate part and can be turned 90 degrees for storage. The Mk III has the whole thing made in one piece with the magazine housing welded directly to the receiver, and the barrel is not removable. Strictly a "throwaway" gun and even cheaper to make than the Mk II.

Why are Mk II kits more expensive, when they were the most common? I probably should not say this, but they offer the better platform if one wants to make up a working SMG, and is willing to take a chance on spending a lazy vacation at Club Fed.

Since there is now no legal way a machinegun can be manufactured by or for an individual, any attempt to "restore" a gun from a kit is illegal under the National Firearms Act (NFA) as revised in 1986. The "NFA rules" statement is simply the seller's way of ducking responsibility for any action the buyer's may take in regard to the kit. It is up to the buyer to know what is legal; if he wants to think he can legally make up a working SMG, that is his problem; the seller just sells the kits, which are legal to buy and own.


June 17, 2002, 05:04 AM
That's great info. I'm leaning towards the cheaper III anyway, and since I don't plan on making a working SMG it should be fine.

So all I need is a cylindrical dowel of wood to shape and paint into a replica receiver tube?

Thanks again,

James K
June 17, 2002, 09:58 PM
I saw one made that way. Cut the slot, painted it black with a silver "spring", cut out the port and painted the "bolt" in, drilled a hole for the handle. Painted with flat black enamel, it looked OK from a few feet away.

There are more realistic ways, but no one could say that was an attempt to make a machinegun.


June 23, 2002, 07:20 AM
I heard that somewhere is for sale a semi-suto receiver for 250 bucks. Nah, I have seen FULL AUTO stens for that (assuming one has all the other fees taken care of)

Well, that is a good idea for an authentic and LEGAL sten, but i wasn't in the mind for a shooter- just a replica. I was thinking about using a wooden dowel or a cardboard tube (like from a roll of christmas paper or something) and painting/cutting it to shape.
Just a wall hanger.
I did see a company that sells UNFINISHED receiver tubes. I may buy one to have a template to follow, bu i will still be useing wood/cardboard on the actual thing to avoid the MIB!

Does anyone suppose that "those who protect us from ourselves" will visit if I buy both a parts kit and an unfinished receiver tube together? (i.e are "they" watching?)

Do you suppose they'll care if they see the unassembled tube laying around unfinished in my workroom- completely separate from the rest of the sten?


June 23, 2002, 11:24 AM
When you get done, cut the finished tube in half and toss it in a drawer. If the question ever comes up, dig it out and give it to them.

June 23, 2002, 07:04 PM
Ok, so gunowners have reason to be paranoid- I freely admit that.
Nevertheless, I am thinking now that I will NOT be buying the unfinished tube.
Not worth the hassle! or potential hassle.