View Full Version : Newie here! Some beginner questions

July 30, 2008, 02:22
I am kinda intriuged by the FAL. I love the rifles themselves after handling them at the gun shows.

I am curious to build one though. I have built a few AKs and they weren't too much trouble.

So first of all, how much of an investment is there in the parts kits and receivers?

Now what is involved in stripping a Fal down and putting the parts onto a new receiver? What kind of special tools will i need and so forth?

And can FAL ammo be reloaded? I"m a reloader.

July 30, 2008, 03:33
I have never put a FAL kit on a new receiver, however, from lurking here for a few years and reading the Gunsmithing part of this board I must admit it sounds simple. Basic skills are required to disassemble/reassemble a FAL rifle. It is a relatively basic design and very "noob friendly". If I can assemble a FAL, you can.

Depending on the quality of your parts kit and the wear and/or damage it has received you shouldn't have any issues.

As far as tools are concerned:

Member "ratas calientes" sells what is generally accepted as the best receiver wrench for a very reasonable price right here on the files. PM him for one.

Call DSA for their FAL toolkit package, $60 well spent indeed.

And remember: read the Gunsmithing forum for a few weeks before you start your build. The quantity of info here is immense.

Good luck!


P.S. The FAL uses 7.62 NATO/.308W ammo which of course is reloadable.

July 30, 2008, 04:36
This is a good place to start reading. click (http://wecsog.org/fal/carbine/)

July 30, 2008, 07:25
If you used to buying and building AK's, get ready for sticker shock!! FAL Kit $250, compliance parts ~$120 and reciever ~$350 - $450. So, yes, a hell of a lot more than building an AK.
I'm building up my first FAL and am purchasing parts a little at a time! The assembly process looks straight forward and I don't expect much trouble.
My only concern is that if I get FAL feavor like I did AK feavor, I'll end up in the very well protected poor house.
But, enjoy!

July 30, 2008, 07:59
For what a used one is going for nowadays, the question really just depends if you want to build your own or not as the savings isn't there like it used to be. Receivers are a real kick in the pants, but kits aren't cheap either, the tools are a must, you can't 'wing-it' with FAL receivers unless you want to potentially damage the most expensive part (unless your kit is Izzy or STG) of your build. And then theres the extra stuff like pin gauges, calipers (unless you've got some already) headspace guages, etc.
It's a lot of fun (well, as long as everything times right that is) and the satisfaction of building your own is why some of us prefer to do it that way but I wouldn't say it was cheaper anymore.
It's also a relatively easy build compared to other similar rifles.

July 30, 2008, 08:57
Originally posted by bobotech

What kind of special tools will i need and so forth?

You'll need a Dremel (Wescog points) for removing old receiver stubs. Also a bench vise, a big honker, no ChinaMart stuff here. Wilton's are nice! :D Only 'bout $275.00 and you can use it for other stuff. Hope you got a bench to mount it! Oh, and a big Breaker bar, 'bout 3' long. 1/2" is OK, but 3/4" is better. You can use this for other stuff too. Don't forget to pick up a 3' or 4' piece of pipe in case you need a little extra leverage on the breaker bar.

You could always look for a Files member in your area that has the equipment and would give you an assist. Buy him a Battlepack.

Did I mention that DSA makes nice Fals in the color of your choice?

July 30, 2008, 09:13
And can FAL ammo be reloaded? I"m a reloader.
Short answer, YES!
It takes either 7.62mm NATO or .308 winchester headstamped ammo. Either can be reloaded using pretty much normal reolading proceedures.
Some are picky with soft point ammo, but not all.
Military brass will need a couple of extra things done to it to prep the case for reloading, but is otherwise fine.

If you've reloaded for any other gas operated rifle then the same applies to the FAL.

July 30, 2008, 10:53
Thanks for the advice all!!

I was under the impression that Fals had fluted chambers which didn't lend themselves to reloading?

The tools don't scare me that much, I have a buddy who owns a machine shop so we could do some of work at his place.

Is there any online guides to buliding a Fal? How much is a fully built Fal worth these days? I mean if I could buy one at a gun show for 600 dollars, it doesn't make sense to build one, does it?

And how does the semi-full conversion work? I mean with my AK kits, you get receivers that are never drilled for that evil third hole. With ARs you use a semi trigger pack. How does that work with the Fal? I don't know anything about them other than they are supposed to be great reliable rifles.

July 30, 2008, 11:51
The Arizona Response Systems FAL build DVD is the dogs danglies apparently.
Contact "gunplumber" and he will send you one.

Fluted chambers are generally an HK thing, not a FAL thing.

July 30, 2008, 11:56
I second SIG552's suggestion. If you would fully understand all the workings and inside knowledge of the FAL, Gunplumber's ARS DVD is THE manual for building a FAL. He walks you through every aspect and operation of building a FAL.
Go to his web site at:

July 30, 2008, 17:02
if ya use the ARSE method ...youll be needing this .........


J. Armstrong
July 30, 2008, 19:00
Unless you are determined to do it as a challenge or learning experience, buying the tools to build just one or two FALs is not remotely cost effective. Better to borrow or rent the tools from someone here, or hook up with someone who already has them.
The market remains soft, so you can buy really nice used rifles for less than you can built one.

Be advised building a FAL one part at a time is horribly expensive ( AMHIK :( ). Much better to find a complete kit and go from there - if you are a bit patient, hold out for one of the better kits - they are getting scarce and pricey, but they are out there and will save both your budget and patience in the long run.

Brass Rat
August 02, 2008, 16:04
I was under the impression that Fals had fluted chambers which didn't lend themselves to reloading?

HK's are the ones with the fluted chambers.

I shoot mostly handloads in my Century/Imbel. I full length size with a Lee standard .308 die and they function flawlessly.