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-   -   Question about Central American FALs... (http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showthread.php?t=305951)

KVL February 27, 2011 22:04

Question about Central American FALs...
 
What sorts of FAL rifles were used in Central America during the wars of the 1980s? By both governments-Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, El Salvador. And rebel movements-Contras, FMLN, other leftists.

EX1 February 27, 2011 22:07

Some of the Cuban contract Fals showed up there. EX1

Lee Carpentieri February 28, 2011 04:47

Fals of the 1980s of Central america
 
In Nicaragua the Governemnt troops were supplied By FN Herstahl, Imbel of Brazil and DGFM of Argentina with Fals.They also had M16A1's, Sig 540's and Galil's in 5.56 The Sandanista's/Communists were supplied from various Eastern Block countries of Europe and Russia with Ak's and SKS's and whatever they could take from dead Government troops from ambush's. Like EX-1 said with the Fals supplied By Castro to the Sandanista's with the Cuban Fals that had the Cuban crest drilled out/ Sanitized. Post 1979 the Contra's were supplied by the C.I.A with various sanitized US weapons and a lot of AK's and Fals from the former Samoza Government troops that fled with thier Fals.

El Salvador on the Government side, It was a hodge podge of Fal's and USA supplied M1 garands, M1 carbines, M14's and a few M16's, M1919's, M79's and M60's from the MAP of the USA. Also had HK 33's and Galils. Map stands for Military assistance program. Communists, About the same as Nicaragua except that quite a few Chinese Aks showed up via Vietnam.

Panama, Mostly supplied with US weapons and later with AK's from various countries.

Hondoras, Another country with USA MAP weapons and supplimented with Fal's and of all things Ruger Mini-14's. The Bad guys had a hodge podge of everything they could get there hands on and by any means possible. The countries you asked about didn't only have Fals as you can see what I posted from memory.

KVL February 28, 2011 17:31

Re: Fals of the 1980s of Central america
 
Quote:

Originally posted by Lee Carpentieri
In Nicaragua the Governemnt troops were supplied By FN Herstahl, Imbel of Brazil and DGFM of Argentina with Fals.They also had M16A1's, Sig 540's and Galil's in 5.56 The Sandanista's/Communists were supplied from various Eastern Block countries of Europe and Russia with Ak's and SKS's and whatever they could take from dead Government troops from ambush's. Like EX-1 said with the Fals supplied By Castro to the Sandanista's with the Cuban Fals that had the Cuban crest drilled out/ Sanitized. Post 1979 the Contra's were supplied by the C.I.A with various sanitized US weapons and a lot of AK's and Fals from the former Samoza Government troops that fled with thier Fals.

Didn't the Contras have Argie FALs, some that the CIA bought?

Quote:

El Salvador on the Government side, It was a hodge podge of Fal's and USA supplied M1 garands, M1 carbines, M14's and a few M16's, M1919's, M79's and M60's from the MAP of the USA. Also had HK 33's and Galils. Map stands for Military assistance program. Communists, About the same as Nicaragua except that quite a few Chinese Aks showed up via Vietnam.

I didn't know the FMLN had ChiCom T56 AKs. What kind were they? AK-47 or stamped receiver AKM-type? When did they get them? Also, didn't Venezuela initially support both the Sandinistas and the FMLN?

Quote:

Panama, Mostly supplied with US weapons and later with AK's from various countries.

Hondoras, Another country with USA MAP weapons and supplimented with Fal's and of all things Ruger Mini-14's. The Bad guys had a hodge podge of everything they could get there hands on and by any means possible. The countries you asked about didn't only have Fals as you can see what I posted from memory.

By "bad guys" with regard to Honduras, I presume you refer to Marxist rebels?

KVL March 01, 2011 06:15

Quote:

Originally posted by EX1
Some of the Cuban contract Fals showed up there. EX1
I've heard of that.

mohshard March 01, 2011 10:11

I'm not sure about the 80s, (I was a kid in Miami then), but two years ago went to Panama and all the soldiers I saw pulling guard duty on street corners in bad areas, (one way to keep the tourists safe and crime down), had AMD 65 style AK's in 7.62 with the wire folder and two handgrips, one fore and one aft. Sidearms appeared to be BHP style 9mms.
Didn't mind parking in a bad neighborhood because I knew the rental wasn't going anywhere.
Got a nice picture of me standing next to them in a very bad part of town outside the Havana Club bar.

tangoben March 01, 2011 11:23

I thought it was a mortal sin here to speak of a picture and then not post it!!

4 brigada March 01, 2011 13:08

Friend of mine got a cuban/chilean contact FAL kit. Handguars were all engraved with the names of the users and 'FMLN" deeply engraved on the left handguard.

KVL March 01, 2011 21:33

Quote:

Originally posted by 4 brigada
Friend of mine got a cuban/chilean contact FAL kit. Handguars were all engraved with the names of the users and 'FMLN" deeply engraved on the left handguard.
Do you have any pics?

blackmatt March 01, 2011 21:46

4 brigada-

Were those wooden handguards ? I know that was the orginal configuration but I would have thought the woodies were long ago traded in for plastic ones. All the Cuban kits shown on the FILES over the past seveal years have had plastic.

woodie March 02, 2011 01:53

Small Arms Review had pics and articles of the conflicts down there. Every thing from sanitized FALs, to home made mortars, and a shot down Huey with a mini gun rusting away.

4 brigada March 02, 2011 02:32

KVL
Quote:

Do you have any pics?
No pics. I think he still has them, I advised him to keep them. They were beat to s***. But just for the historical accuracy they were worth keeping. I know he has the kit. Maybe I miswrote the post "carved " with like a knife or bayo not engraved.


Blackmatt

Quote:

Were those wooden handguards ?
No, they were the hard plastic belgian type. Funny thing no carvings on the the wooden stock .

KVL March 02, 2011 07:30

Quote:

Originally posted by 4 brigada
KVL


No pics. I think he still has them, I advised him to keep them. They were beat to s***. But just for the historical accuracy they were worth keeping. I know he has the kit. Maybe I miswrote the post "carved " with like a knife or bayo not engraved.


Blackmatt



No, they were the hard plastic belgian type. Funny thing no carvings on the the wooden stock .

Did the Cubans always have the plastic type?

KVL March 03, 2011 19:56

Quote:

Originally posted by mohshard
I'm not sure about the 80s, (I was a kid in Miami then), but two years ago went to Panama and all the soldiers I saw pulling guard duty on street corners in bad areas, (one way to keep the tourists safe and crime down), had AMD 65 style AK's in 7.62 with the wire folder and two handgrips, one fore and one aft. Sidearms appeared to be BHP style 9mms.

I think that Panama purchased those AMDs after Noriega was overthrown.

BTW, I recall Peter Kokalis mentioning that he had seen a Venezuelan contract FAL rifle in El Salvador in one of his Shotgun News articles.

blackmatt March 04, 2011 12:54

KVL,

Originally the Cuban FALs had wooden handguards. If you have the Stevens book, the page on the Cuban contract rifles pretty clearly shows wood handguards.

FILES member davew2023 sold a number of Cuban kits a couple of years ago all of which had plastic hadguards since the wooden ones were swapped out while in service.

Dave later posted photos of a Cuban he has restored in which he used metric wooden handguards. If you search his name I'm sure you can find the post.

Story March 04, 2011 13:08

http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showt...hreadid=253794

http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showt...hreadid=296440

blackmatt March 04, 2011 14:48

Thanks, Story. I was too lazy to find those threads.

The triangle stamp on the lower (in front of the serial #) I understand is the tell-tale mark of a Cuban.

Story March 04, 2011 14:56

FSLN 1979

http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/...XzexY/610x.jpg

Looks like a 37mm gun'd Armored Car in the background or a Stuart
http://cache2.asset-cache.net/xc/904...CFD650BFFA4C8C

See also
http://www.tineye.com/search/c53de93...188160abcf473/

Sandanistas, 1978
http://www.corbisimages.com/images/6...2-15552859.jpg

http://www.corbisimages.com/Enlargem...-15552859.html

1979
http://www.corbisimages.com/Enlargement/U1971638.html


1988
http://dinofracchia.photoshelter.com...000T5fZOku0zY8

KVL March 05, 2011 15:05

Quote:

Originally posted by blackmatt
KVL,

Originally the Cuban FALs had wooden handguards. If you have the Stevens book, the page on the Cuban contract rifles pretty clearly shows wood handguards.

FILES member davew2023 sold a number of Cuban kits a couple of years ago all of which had plastic hadguards since the wooden ones were swapped out while in service.

Dave later posted photos of a Cuban he has restored in which he used metric wooden handguards. If you search his name I'm sure you can find the post.

I'm afraid I don't have Stevens book. Could you tell me more? Also, where did the Cubans get the plastic handguards? Did they purchase them from Belgium?

C2A1 March 06, 2011 19:42

I still have three cuba via Nicaragua kits and they still have the wooden handguards. These have their girlfriends names inscribed on them (or maybe that is the name of the rifle). One has type A buttstock and the other two type B. All have browning flash hiders.

grullohorse March 06, 2011 20:58

Here's a Cuban built from one of davew2023's kits. As others have said, these had wood HG's back in 1958, most including mine were replaced along the way with synthetic. Still I'd say the old girl looks pretty good for 53!

http://www.sacreddogproductions.com/.../Cubano002.JPG

KVL March 08, 2011 14:26

Re: Fals of the 1980s of Central america
 
Quote:

Originally posted by Lee Carpentieri
In Nicaragua the Governemnt troops were supplied By FN Herstahl, Imbel of Brazil and DGFM of Argentina with Fals.They also had M16A1's, Sig 540's and Galil's in 5.56 The Sandanista's/Communists were supplied from various Eastern Block countries of Europe and Russia with Ak's and SKS's and whatever they could take from dead Government troops from ambush's. Like EX-1 said with the Fals supplied By Castro to the Sandanista's with the Cuban Fals that had the Cuban crest drilled out/ Sanitized. Post 1979 the Contra's were supplied by the C.I.A with various sanitized US weapons and a lot of AK's and Fals from the former Samoza Government troops that fled with thier Fals.

Panama, Mostly supplied with US weapons and later with AK's from various countries.

Didn't the Sandinistas, after they took power, give much of the FALs they inherited from the previous Somoza regime to the FMLN and other Marxist guerilla groups? Also, did Noriega support any revolutionary groups?

Abominog March 08, 2011 15:44

Imbel FALs are still in use in Honduras.

one hand clapping March 08, 2011 16:30

When I was down there in the 80's ,the panamanians carried m16's and 1911s. When we would go up north as stated you would see just bout anything, mostly aks and sks, I never saw a fal, but only did so many border jumps. [ and was NEVER on point] Given that we were not to make contact , you never got close enough to really check out the individual weapons in the bush. Just close enough to find out what was going on, who was do'n it, and that they HAD weapons. plot, and move on.

OHC

KVL March 08, 2011 16:42

Quote:

Originally posted by one hand clapping
When I was down there in the 80's ,the panamanians carried m16's and 1911s. When we would go up north as stated you would see just bout anything, mostly aks and sks, I never saw a fal, but only did so many border jumps. [ and was NEVER on point] Given that we were not to make contact , you never got close enough to really check out the individual weapons in the bush. Just close enough to find out what was going on, who was do'n it, and that they HAD weapons. plot, and move on.

OHC

Where did you go exactly?

one hand clapping March 09, 2011 12:53

due to the Bolin admendment, I can not answer your question with any exact locations. lets just say there are several countries , north of Panama that we were very involved in back then, that I got to "visit".

Lee Carpentieri March 09, 2011 13:16

The Central American weapons of war.
 
Quote KVL, Also, Did Noriega support any revolutionary groups?

Not that we knew of, He was supporting the Cocaine cartels as a jumping off point for the drug runners to launch their ops towards the East /West coast of the USA. He was also selling info on US Operations in Central America. Norieaga was also being used for a fee with his National bank of Panama for the Cocaine cartels to Launder their profits into legitimate acquisitions around the world.

KVL March 15, 2011 11:53

I admit I was interested in FMLN FAL rifles. I know that most of them were probably former Cuban, but I was wondering if there were any others.

KVL April 01, 2011 20:35

Re: Fals of the 1980s of Central america
 
Quote:

Originally posted by Lee Carpentieri

El Salvador on the Government side, It was a hodge podge of Fal's and USA supplied M1 garands, M1 carbines, M14's and a few M16's, M1919's, M79's and M60's from the MAP of the USA. Also had HK 33's and Galils. Map stands for Military assistance program. Communists, About the same as Nicaragua except that quite a few Chinese Aks showed up via Vietnam.

Panama, Mostly supplied with US weapons and later with AK's from various countries.

Did Panama ever receive FALs?

Second, were did El Salvador get their FALs from? BTW, did the FMLN have any FALs other than Cuban?

KVL July 13, 2011 14:30

Quote:

Originally posted by Abominog
Imbel FALs are still in use in Honduras.
Do you have any pics?

ghf July 14, 2011 11:46

I'll tell you what I remember when I was working down there- late 70's thru '80s or so.

El Salvador govt prior to major US support had mixture of weapons incl M-1 garands. What I remember is that each of the three brigades (El Sal was divided into three Bde zones, at the time), had stockpiles of ammo for weapons that another brigade had. We had to "cross level".

After US intervention in '81 or so (Reagan pres), we started standardizing weaponry. The Battalion that we helped form and train (Atlacatl). received NIB Colt M-16A1's.

From "G's", we captured M-16s, Galils, Czech C-4, blasting caps, B-40 rockets for RPG's and medical supplies (incl prescription drugs w/ US patient names, pharmacies w/ addresses on them). After processing thru intelligence, the M-16s and Galils' serial # matched to deliveries made to Samoza's National Guard prior to his fall from power. Sandinistas sent to FSLN and other guerrillas.

I do remember that Honduran and Salvadoran officers had Browning Hi-Power pistols w/ their national crests on top, in front of rear sights.

Honduran Army that I remember, '81-84 had M-16A1s, CAR-15s and UZI's.

I remember that Soldier of Fortune came down and gave Atlacatl several M-1D sniper rifles.

I dont remember any FAL's or G-3s etc, though I know that they existed. We had inventories of El Sal and Honduran army weapons.

I do remember going into a storage facility in Hondo and seeing all sort of neat stuff- Mausers, different types of machine guns, Thompsons and other submachine guns.

I "kind of remember" the Hondurans getting rid of some Springfield '03s that they didnt want by burying them.

KVL July 14, 2011 15:08

Quote:

Originally posted by ghf
I'll tell you what I remember when I was working down there- late 70's thru '80s or so.

El Salvador govt prior to major US support had mixture of weapons incl M-1 garands. What I remember is that each of the three brigades (El Sal was divided into three Bde zones, at the time), had stockpiles of ammo for weapons that another brigade had. We had to "cross level".

After US intervention in '81 or so (Reagan pres), we started standardizing weaponry. The Battalion that we helped form and train (Atlacatl). received NIB Colt M-16A1's.



I believe that the standard service rifle before we started sending aid was the H&K G3. We also obtained G3s from Portugal and sent them.

Quote:

From "G's", we captured M-16s, Galils, Czech C-4, blasting caps, B-54 rockets for RPG's and medical supplies (incl prescription drugs w/ US patient names, pharmacies w/ addresses on them). After processing thru intelligence, the M-16s and Galils' serial # matched to deliveries made to Samoza's National Guard prior to his fall from power. Sandinistas sent to FSLN and other guerrillas.
What are B-54s? Also, the FSLN were the Sandinistas. You may be referring to the FMLN.

Quote:

I do remember going into a storage facility in Hondo and seeing all sort of neat stuff- Mausers, different types of machine guns, Thompsons and other submachine guns.

I "kind of remember" the Hondurans getting rid of some Springfield '03s that they didnt want by burying them.
Must have been the mothball stuff. Kind of a shame about the 03s.

archy July 14, 2011 18:14

Re: Question about Central American FALs...
 
Quote:

Originally posted by KVL
What sorts of FAL rifles were used in Central America during the wars of the 1980s? By both governments-Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, El Salvador. And rebel movements-Contras, FMLN, other leftists.
If you're not aware of the subjewct of this FALFiles thread, you should be.

Nicarauguan FAL song

Now somebody give me a !ˇBueno! ˇOlé! ˇBravo!

4 brigada July 14, 2011 19:14

Quote:

Friend of mine got a cuban/chilean contact FAL kit. Handguars were all engraved with the names of the users and 'FMLN" deeply engraved on the left handguard.
That quote is from one of my prior post, I was going to clear up some of the confusion, but then it went away. Now it got resurected I will take the oportunity.

FMLN = Frente Farabundo Marti para Liberacion Nacional (El Salvador)

FSLN = Frente Sandinista de Liberacion Nacional (Nicaragua)

KVL July 15, 2011 00:08

Re: Re: Question about Central American FALs...
 
Quote:

Originally posted by archy


If you're not aware of the subjewct of this FALFiles thread, you should be.

Nicarauguan FAL song

Now somebody give me a !ˇBueno! ˇOlé! ˇBravo!

Are you the same archy from Free Republic?

ghf July 15, 2011 11:11

KVL, roger on the FMLN, not FSLN.

Also, my error, it was B-40 rockets, not B-52 that was the rocket that was fired from an RPG (dont ask me what model).

Yep, on the G-3's. Looked at some old photos that I had...El Sal soldiers in dress uniforms w/ polished helmets and G-3's.

The Salvadorans did not have a supply system as we did/do in the US Army.

One unit would have a warehouse w/ 30-06 ammo, but have, oh, lets say, G-3's. Another unit would have lots of 7.62 NATO ammo, but carry M-1 garands etc.

Atlacatl had these large, wheeled mortars and no way to transport nor ammo...

Medical care was another complete story...

Another tidbit- we had to destroy the dynamite in a large unmaintained, falling apart shed. Basically out in elements for years. Dynamnite leaking the Nitroglycerin. Very unstable and unsafe. Not fun.

glockamolee June 05, 2013 10:43

I was authorized to carry a Honduran FAL during my "tenure" in country in 1984. I have to find the picture of myself with the FAL when I was there.

saigamantx June 05, 2013 21:41

Check out a movie called underfire with nick nolte.

saigamantx June 06, 2013 00:55

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnsTZ...7927328E7D1C2C

jimmbob June 06, 2013 09:12

Quote:

Originally Posted by saigamantx (Post 3624521)

here it is...

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/VnsTZo9VAfc?list=PL747927328E7D1C2C" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

biyf June 06, 2013 09:22

Quote:

Originally Posted by archy (Post 3170211)
If you're not aware of the subjewct of this FALFiles thread, you should be.

Nicarauguan FAL song

Now somebody give me a !ˇBueno! ˇOlé! ˇBravo!

I'm due to do a retranslation of that. Looking back at my first one, it's a bit rough. The Nicaraguan slang is pretty off the wall and it makes great sense in Spanish, but it's hard to get it to "flow" in English.


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