Gun Review: Century Arms G1 (FN FAL)

NOTE: This product review was made possible by  To get up-to-date information on where to find Century rifles for sale, please visit

The Century Arms G-1 is a copy of the Fn-Fal that uses surplus parts from metric versions as well as American made parts to comply with US gun laws. Century makes two types of the G-1. The only difference between the two is the buttstock. This particular example has the M-249 type stock. The stock is heavier than the standard and has a foldup wire shoulder support. This wire support was not used in this review.

After WWII the major powers all began the search for updated infantry weapons. Dieudonné Joseph Saive was the primary designer for FN. That name may strike a chord with readers since he worked with John Browning on the Browning Hi-Power design and completed it after Brownings death.

Saive team first designed the FN-49 in 1947. When work began on the Fal much of the action was taken from the 49. Strangely enough the decision for the caliber was a point of contention between the potential customers. FN wanted to use, of all things, the 7.92X33 Kurzt the Nazi’s used in the STG 44 assault rifle! The British wanted their new .280 cartridge while the US wanted the new 7.62×51. When all was said and done NATO standardized on the 7.62×51 cartridge.

The T-48 used in competition against the M-14

Another hurdle was which countries would adopt this main battle rifle. The most heated competition was in the US where the Fal was pitted against the T-44 that was later officially named the M-14. Of course we all know what happened the M-14 won and was adopted by the United States military. After the Korean War they adopted the M-14 as did various other countries. By a wide margin the Fal won out with 90 nations adopting it for military service. Even into the 21st century smaller nations still use the Fal. In fact if you keep track of world events you’ll see Libyan rebels using the Fal as the primary weapon in the fight against Khadafi.

The Fn-Fal was so widely used by western nations it was called “The right arm of the free world”.

Now some may be wondering why the British named their version the L1A1 while others used Fn-Fal. The answer is pretty simple the British used the inch system of measure while European countries used metric measurement. There really is very little difference between the two rifles. One important fact to note is the inch version can use metric magazines as well while the metric rifle can only use metric magazines. I would discourage using metric mags in a British model since they tend to be rather loose fitting.

The Century G-1 model is a metric version. All of the controls and internals operate in the same manner as the inch models. The gas system can be regulated by rotating the ring, that is located just behind the front sight. This is a handy arrangement. When other rifles are very dirty or become fouled with sand, mud etc. they have to be cleaned to stay in the fight. With the G-1 you simply adjust the gas system to allow higher gas pressure in the system that allows it to continue working in adverse conditions. With the gas system off rifle grenades can be used. The standard gas setting is set on the number three. The adjustment ring goes from 1 through 9.

The front sight is adjustable for elevation only. Once set it needs no further adjustment. The rear sight is adjustable for Windage and elevation. When sighting in the rifle the first time the rear sight should be set at 200 meters. The front post is then adjusted until zero is achieved at 100 meters. The rear sight slides on a ramp with markings to indicate 100/200 through 600 meters. A small spring loaded plug in depressed allowing the shooter to move the rear sight forward and to the rear. To adjust Windage the rear sight moves on a track. There is one screw on the left and one on the right. The user loosens one screw and tightens the one on the opposite side to make windage adjustments.

The left side windage screw is just under the spring plunger in this picture.

This Century model featured in these pictures is the metric with an M-249 buttstock. In the above picture shown just under the windage adjustment is the takedown lever. When the user pulls it back the rifle breaks open. Remove the receiver cover by sliding it to the rear. The bolt assembly can then be pulled straight back and out of the receiver. Then clean the bolt and carrier as usual. This also gives access to the barrel for cleaning.

One thing Century did was to attach an American made flash suppressor rather than the original long suppressor. This is much more effective at reducing recoil and flash. The thumb safety is standard for most military rifles these days. It’s located on the left side just under the shooters left thumb. Up is safe down is fire.

Country of origin Belgium
Weight 11 lbs (with laoded 20 round magazine), 9.5 lbs (without magazine)
Action tilting breechlock/regulated gas system
Length 42″
Barrel 21″
Twist 4 groove, RH, 1:12″
Cyclic rate 650 rpm (full auto, military FN FAL)
Muzzle velocity (21″ FAL with SS 77 rounds): 2754 fps

The Century G-1 has a carry handle above the ejection port as well as a steel bi-pod which is standard on the heavy barrel versions. The bi-pod also rotates to the left and right allowing adjustment on uneven surfaces.

Range Time

When I received this test rifle from Century I disassembled it, cleaned and lubricated it. The surplus parts which are mainly the internals showed little wear. I reassembled the rifle and headed for the range 🙂

I set my targets up at 100 yards and sighted the rifle in. I laid out my shooting mat and got down to business. My ammunition was 147 grain FMJ Winchester white box.

The Fn-Fal is known for average accuracy. The research I did showed an average of three to four inches with iron sights at 100 yards. I fired several groups of five rounds then measured. The average group size after 80 rounds was 3.5 inches showing this example to be right with the established groups. This is certainly good enough for a main battle rifle. There were no failures or malfunctions of any kind. This example was pleasant to shoot with only moderate recoil thanks to the gas system and the standard number three setting on the gas regulator. Brass was ejected approximately four yards directly right. When I retrieved the brass there was a dent halfway back on the case. This would keep me from attempting to reload these used cases. This is nothing unusual in a military rifle. The H&K family of rifles does the same thing.


I’ve owned an inch version of the L1A1 British rifle and always enjoyed it. This metric Century model was no different. The rifle was 100% reliable, reasonably accurate, the internal parts were not overly worn insuring many years of life left in the rifle. The fit and finish was very good with no defects noted.

In all likelihood I would change the stock back to the standard version even though this model was comfortable to shoot. I’m a bit of a traditionalist I guess 🙂 I do like the bi-pod. When folded it fit snuggly against the metal heatshield and in no way interfered with a good forward grip. Magazines are very reasonable in price. Century includes two twenty round mags with each rifle. These mags appeared to be new surplus.

With the reasonable price of approximately $600 and performance of this rifle I would have no problem recommending the Century G-1 to the military rifle enthusiast or casual shooter.

Phil White

Retired police officer with 30 years of service. Firearms instructor and SRU team member. I still instruct with local agencies. My daily carry pistol is the tried and true 1911. I’m the Associate Editor and moderator at TFB. I really enjoy answering readers questions and comments. We can all learn from each other about our favorite hobby!


  • OMG, a “shoulder thing that goes up” for real!

    • Phil White


      Yep, identical to the M249 stock. Like I said they have the regular FN stock as well. They actually had enough request they added a model with this stock. Not my cup of tea but apparently some like them.

  • Sid

    Those who do not learn from history are destined to repeat it. George Santayana

    One little historical note that your article reminded me of is that FN did not want to use the 7.62x51mm round for this weapon when first designed. The powers-that-were chose it as the NATO round and consequently many rifles were designed to use that round. Unfortunately, the recoil overpowers most assault rifle designs. Both the M-14 and the FN FAL were next to useless firing on automatic and good aimed follow-up shots took more effort. More effort, not impossible, but more effort.

    I have carried 5.56mm weapons on 4 military sponsored camping trips. There is nothing wrong with that caliber. The bullets that we are shamed into using due to a misguided treaty do not perform as well as many readily available bullets. But that does not mean the caliber is inherently weak. There will always be the veteran or two who lament the switch to a “.22 caliber” main battle rifle. And can we have one more long range impact needless discussion. Yes, a bigger faster bullet does more at distance, but if move the targets outside of iron sights range… can you even see the damn enemy at 600 meters? Even a bad camo pattern works beyond iron sight range. I am not worried about our soldiers missing shots at the enemy they cannot see. I AM worried about our soldiers not being able to get follow-up shots on the enemy they can see.

    I prefer big bullets in my crew-served weapons. As long as there is a vehicle to support the ammo, I would have M2s on everything. And a mini-gun is all sorts of fun on the battlefield. But eventually, size matters and bigger is not always better. An assault rifle is not a sniper rifle. The M14 is returning to service as an optic-equipped sniper/designated marksmen weapon. But it has to use purpose built ammo. You cannot run the same bullets in it as the M240 without damaging the barrel.

    So, there. I said it. I feel better. Have a nice Thursday.

    • Phil White


      I agree with you on ammo choice. The FN-Fal was almost uncontrollable on full auto. Even so the British in the Falklands war were slinging the semi auto they were issued for select fire captured FN Argentine rifles.
      Anyone who has ever seen a wound from a 5.56 will not question the damage it does. The only problem I have is with the 62 grain penetrator round which no longer tumbles when it strikes a target. The M-14 will most likely be around for some time since there is really nothing semi-auto to take it’s place. New ones are in the works but it will be some time before the M-14 fades away again.
      Oh by the way I love firing an M-2!!!

  • Geore

    Great article – only gripe I have is the quote

    “FN wanted to use, of all things, the 7.92X33 Kurzt the Nazi’s used in the STG 44 assault rifle!”

    That would imply that either a) all Germans were Nazis in WW2 or b) the STG 44 was only issued to Nazi party members.

    Lots of German soldiers fought and died during WW2 and were never members of the Nazi party. Nazi membership was 8+ million at its height and German population was around 70 million in 1939.

    Sorry to be picky, just a tiny item. Other than that, great article on a great rifle!

    • Phil White


      Thank you sir I appreciate it. Really what I meant it just seems strange that a short time after so many lives were lost in WWII you would think a German army round would be the last loading they would consider. I’m a WWII history buff and have been since I was a kid and your right on the Nazi party numbers. In fact many did join the party out of fear.
      The STG 44 was issued to regular army troops as well as SS members. The quantities never reached huge numbers since it was developed late in the war when production in quantity was no longer possible because of the large bombing raids in the Ruhr.

  • Do you know if the Century Blast Enhancer, er, muzzle brake is removable? Or is it blind pinned and welded like the CETME’s usually are?

    • Phil White


      It’s pretty much permanently attached. I have been able to remove the one on my personal rifle without a terrible amount of trouble. This muzzle brake actually works better than the original.

  • Sid

    I was fortunate enough to train briefly with 1 Para Regiment in 1988. A few Falkland veterans were still serving at that time. The unit had recently been issued the L85.

    Like the M16, there were some issues with the rifle design. The Brits said it had not been “para-proofed” yet. Plastic dust covers tore off in thick vegetation. They had recently deployed to a tropically region and had trouble in the mangroves. But there was no general complaint about the caliber. Using the optics, they were excellent marksmen. They also understood the concept of concentrated AIMED fire. At that time, most of their deployments had been in peacekeeping missions in Northern Ireland so they understood that you don’t go cycling in a neutral village.

    None of them harkened back to the FN FAL. They respected it, but acknowledged its limitations. It was a good gun for the time. The limitation that they noted in our training was the ability to put down a volume of fire with the FN FAL. With the 5.56, repeated, quick, aimed shots was much easier. With FN FAL, it took effort.

    I still see FALs in Africa. There does not seem to be any faction on either side of any armed endeavor that does not have at least some FALs. Surely, that is a testament to the design.

    • Phil White


      Yes sir they certainly show up in about every conflict there is these days.

  • What, no Century Monkey Fingers errant work to mess it up? That’s a rarity — or a specially-made review copy.

    Great price though, I’d have to consider it, even with the Century label.

    • Phil White


      I keep hearing about specially made review rifles which is actually an internet myth as far as I can tell. I’ve reviewed several Century rifles and never found any sign of special work.

  • Lance

    Looks like a fun gun, Id prefer a L1A1 with all the bells and whistles but those are now hard to find and are expensive like most other 7.62mm NATO rifles.

    @Phil White

    The M-14 is going to be around for a while. the M-110 is another 7.62mm semi auto BUT its a pure sniper weapon the M-14 is for DMRs and dose better in sandy conditions of Afghanistan.

    The SAS is the only European user of the FAL any more some South American and a few African and Caribbean nations use them too.

  • JonMac

    Not directly relevant to the review, but we called it ‘L1A1’ because that’s our military system of designation, not because it was made on the Imperial system of measurement. Just like the AR15 was adopted by the U.S. as the M16. We’d still have called it ‘L1A1’ if it was metric, or indeed if it was a completely different weapon system.

    I would also call a lack of selective fire a pretty major difference between the two, though the folding cocking handle, sights, and lack of compensator are pretty minor ones.

  • Martin (M)

    Love the review, and I would certainly love to own one of these if only for the price and nostalgia.

    Adding to the ammunition debate, but a principal problem with 5.56 is how easy it’s deflected. It’s something that 7.62 doesn’t suffer from nearly as much. 5.56 won’t break down a mud brick wall or cut brush, and 7.62 is more effective at longer range. SO, with that being said, I’ll repeat what I always say, both calibers have their place, so use them appropriately. Where the FAL fails as a battle rifle is it’s lack of optics mounting, and accuracy limited by it’s oddly hinged design. Modern designs in 7.62 are a much better choice if you want or need better accuracy. In all honesty, I’d be more excited to see this in a para configuration.

    • Phil White


      You can actually get a Para model from another company but it will cost you $4000.

    • Phil White


      Agreed the optics mounting is a problem. Changing out the cover with a railed model will work but they are just loose enough not to be accurate. Yes by all means both calibers are needed especially in Afghanistan. 5.56 right up through 50 cal’s.

  • Does it take a bayonet?

    • Phil White


      No sir not Century models. It can be modified if someone wants to put the money into it.

  • Hrachya Hayrapetyan

    Sid and Phil White
    I don’t completely agree about the ammo. I think there is still needed a 7.62×51 rifle (semi auto) in squad level! Concerning 5.56 wounds…don’t forget that bad guys become more and more “armored”…I mean in 200-300 yards 5.56 won’t be so effective against body armour . Also guys in Afghanistan realize that they need something more than a 5.56×45 to fight SVD troops shooting from long distances (not to replace the 5.56, but along with it). Sure 5.56 assault rifles are the core of army small arms…but still let’s leave those 7.62 semi autos in service . Concerning the range of 600 …scopes solve that problem, don’t they. I think it’s not correct to reject good 7.62 rifles , because we can’t see the target on 600 yards via iron sights. Of course full auto fire from these guns is just wasting of ammunition.

    • Phil White


      Yep still need those designated marksman rifles.

  • howlingcoyote

    Ammo choices should have included, since it was using new ammo (308 win.), the 25 Rem. or 250 Savage (using a 100 or 115 gr. psp bullet. )Good for short and longer ranges without the recoil of the 308 Win. And much better than the 223 Rem.

  • Jeff

    This is making me want a Century gun…. never thought that would happen, but those DSA FALs are just so damned expensive =/

    • Phil White


      DSA’s are very expensive. I’d love to have one but they are just to much for me:-)

  • Raoul O’Shaughnessy

    No matter what it is that Century puts out, there is always going to be a good bit of skepticism that it was assembled correctly. Or even half correctly. Or a quarter correctly.

  • Bill

    I enjoyed the article, I appreciate the work you’ve done. Where do I find mags for it? Thanks.

  • Bill

    Thank you, Phil! Awesomeness man, I just ordered this FAL (My first semi rifle) and I’m hungry for info. Thanks again. 🙂

    • Phil White


      You bet Bill I hope you enjoy it for many years to come! I did some searching and found a website for you that may quench your thirst for information—- If you have any questions at all you have my email so don’t hesitate to contact me:-)
      Also if any of these places run out of mags just do a Google search and you’ll find many places that sell them at reasonable prices.

  • El Duderino

    Sorry, when I read the words “received this test rifle from Century” I tune everything else out. Century has a well documented history of sending hand picked guns out for testing.

    With Century firearms, reviews need to be done with store bought guns. There are just so many variances between Century gun A and Century gun B. It’s not like it’s a new design and the reviewer is looking for any design flaws or areas of concern — these are proven 40-60 year old designs that Century is selling (CETME, HK93, Galil, FAL, AK, etc). Most discussion forums on the Century guns talk about unreliability, poor fitting and finish, etc.

    • Phil White


      The thing is these internet rumors serve no positive purpose. I have no personal interest in sugar coating any review and frankly refuse to do so under any circumstances. Where does this documented history come from and where can I find a website with pictures and explanations from a qualified source of doctored rifles? I guess what gets me is the idea I would knowingly review a rifle or any firearm that has been doctored without saying so loud and clear! I have already stated I went over the rifle completely looking for anything to indicate a reworked rifle. I do this with all review guns sent to me no matter who makes them.
      This rifle was in no way tweaked for a review and believe me I can tell.
      I own one (Century L1A1) bought off the shelf in 2005 and the results were the same as this example. I’ve shot thousands of rounds through it in the last six years with no problems.

  • W

    Century arms have had a bad reputation, mostly on internet posts (thank you for giving me hope that the internet is not just another bathroom wall), though i think most firearms that they build are quite acceptable. I will admit there are better copies out there, but these century FAL’s are quite fine.

    and lance, i agree with you about the L1A1. its too bad many were destroyed by anti-gun britain when it was replaced by the SA80. most FALs i seem to find online or in gun shows are IMBEL copies.

    • Phil White


      It’s a real shame indeed that Britain got rid of the L1A1’s because we could have had some great rifles out of that deal. Agreed there are better copies out there. For the money they do pretty well. As another person said the DSA rifles are very nice but at $3000 – $4000 they should be. I saw a used plain model DSA last week that showed a fair amount of use and it was $2895.00.

  • El Duderino

    I know it’s anecdotal evidence, but most of the reviews I have read of LGS purchased Century guns have been less than spectacular, while the sent-from-Century have always been great. I know you’re not sugar coating anything, just pointing out the disparity that’s out there.

    I get SGN, every time I get to the J&G ad I look at some of those Century guns and think, “Yeah I could take a chance on that one.” I’ve come pretty close to a C93 and a Golani (Galil clone). Time will tell…

  • Saw a large number of L1A1 on military ranges back in the eighties and none of them dented the cases the I cases that I recall, which makes me think something is amiss inside your rifle. IIRC the gas was meant to be adjusted to give an ejection distance of about 1 yard, not 4.

    • Phil White


      Turning it down a bit may do just what your talking about and save the brass. I’ll try that before sending it back to Century and let you know. I’m going out shortly for a little while.

  • Sergei

    I own a Century FAL G1 that I got from SOG. Mine has a standard stock with “grenade launcher” suppressor and grenade launcher flip up sight. I swapped the suppressor with Browning one from DSA and added swivel on the bottom or stock. No carry handle or bypod on mine though- and I do not miss them either. I am getting same groups at 100 as the author- with iron sights. Never any kind of issue with the gun. I think I payed $649 for mine. I did see DSA one in the other local store- for $1350.00- no thanks!
    I also own Bulgarian AK-74 from Century, friend owns FAL, Sterling and Galil-Golani – all from Century. The only problem out of all the guns- Galil had issues with ejection, poor feeding. The culprit happened to be the gas rod- it was too long, and “ate” all the energy, while flexing backwards. hence the partial ejection and stovepipe of next round. We indexed the rod in, by knocking out the retaining pin and shortening rod by a full twist/putting back the pin. Result- very aggressive ejection, no more issues with feeding. Galil shoots like a dream. It is possible that some people ran into some minor issues with Century products and started the whole brewhaha of “inferior guns”. Like I said- minor stuff only…

    • Phil White


      Very similar to my experiences–thanks!

  • Bill

    I got mine yesterday and I’m happy with it. To me it looks great, I took the two mags apart and cleaned them, because I got the feeling it was slightly sticking. The one mag fits in smoothly w/no effort, while the other you have smack it in like a M-14 mag. It was dark out, so I shot two rounds on the number 4 setting and was surprised by the lite recoil. It’s raining out now so I might get to shoot a whole mag tomorrow. Other than the tight mag I’m very happy and excited so far with my purchase.

    • Phil White


      Good deal I’m glad you’re enjoying it!

  • It’s easy for you gun experts to critique the 556 to the 308 win or 7.62 but in a firefight in the brush you are outgunnned period if you are carrying a .223 compared to a 7.62 round.And as far as impact or damage goes I’ve seen first hand what a 7.62 round does to the enemy and it’s not even close.A 223 round hits a twig it’s gone.A 7.62 is far more effective and wil not deflect near as easy as a 223 period.The only benefit to the 223 is you can carry more ammo.But you will need it.

  • I wholly agree with Cory….

  • Sid


    No one (who is being reasonable) is arguing that 7.62 is not bigger than 5.56. That is math. What I am saying is that recoil is also greater with a 7.62 rifle. The 7.62 battle rifles had one negative design flaw – recoil. Getting a follow-up shot or firing on auto was difficult. The FN FAL was one of the particular rifles that was useless when fired on automatic. Too much recoil.

    Designated marksmen, snipers, and crew served weapons should fire at least 7.62. We can agree there. But for CQB work, clearing buildings, and fire-maneuver, I want my soldiers to have a 5.56 or 6.8. Most people will not realize that in fire and manuever most of your shots are not going to hit anyone. Firing for suppression only requires volume, not caliber.

    Technologically, we do not have a 7.62 weapon that is short enough and can manage the recoil to be used as a main battle rifle. Maybe, with some breakthroughs in technology…. we may one day see a larger caliber battle rifle.

  • jason

    Phil – great article. First time reading your stuff and I much enjoyed it. Hoping you can shed some light on something for me….

    First off – I am new to owning guns and am doing my research as much as possible in my free time. My mini-arsenal currently consists of a Kel-Tec P11 9mm that is my daily carry weapon, a little Jimenez .380 (that I bought mainly to help out a buddy who had some medical bills and needed a few bucks…), an NEF 870 knock-off 12ga. that I’ve put some stuff on for home defense…………and now a FN-FAL. Here’s the issue I’m having:

    Not only am I new to gun ownership – I know virtually nothing about rifles. but I always new I wanted a couple handguns, a shotgun, and a rifle. I’m a tattoo artist by trade and a customer of mine who knows I’ve gotten into recreational shooting contacted me and asked me if I’d be interested in trading tattoo-work for this FN-FAL rifle that he had. I had no idea what it was so I did some research online, checked some prices, and found that even on the low-end…I’d be making out like a bandit. I offered him $200 in cash and several hours of tattoo-work. All that said – my main problem is finding out EXACTLY what gun it is I am now in possession of. It is marked as DSA, but on the receiver it states ‘Hesse receiver’ and ‘assembled by CAI’ and also has the L1A1 designation too.

    from my little bit of research I’ve heard varying (mostly bad) things about the Hesse receiver. But I’m not one to take everything that is said on the internet at heart until I’ve fired the weapon for myself (which I haven’t had a chance to do…I got this thing yesterday) and I also know that ‘CAI’ is Century Arms…and I’ve also heard some iffy things about them. But it does also have the DSA designation-which I’ve heard very good things about. My particular FN-FAL looks pretty much identical to the one in your pictures (including the stock), except that the muzzle-brake on mine is longer and is slotted as opposed to having “holes” in it.

    Do you happen to have any idea what kind of gun this is??? Please forgive my ignorace-I bought it on a whim because I figured at 2 bills and some of my time, I couldn’t go wrong. But at this point I don’t know if I’m right in calling this a DSA FN-FAL, a Hesse FN-FAL, or a CAI FN-FAL. Also – if you happen to have any idea what a weapon like mine in very good but used condition would be worth roughly – that would be cool to know too. Any info you can give on any of the above would be extremely helpful in identifying exactly what it is I have.

    Thanks so much

    • Phil White


      Sorry I just saw the comment. I sent you an email so we can ID this rifle for you.


  • Howard Park

    unfortunately I live in NJ and we still have a pointless assault weapons ban. I’ve been an FAL fan forever and would love to grab the CAI G1 I know the DSA are the best of the FALs, but for battle field accuracy I’ll take less refinement for half the price.

    Only problem is, NJ prohibit flash suppressor and I’ve been told the G1 has a muzzle brake. However, nobody has been able to confirm if the brake is welded or is just a crush washer.

    If anyone can clarify for me it would be greatly appreciated.
    Howard P.
    From the Peoples’ Republic of NJ

    • Phil White


      The G1 is permanently attached but there is a way to remove it without much trouble. A gunsmith can do that in 15 minutes. Basically you just leave the barrel clean to be legal.

      • Howard P

        Hi Phil,
        Thanks for the reply. Even if it be removed by a gunsmith, if it is pinned or welded, that is legal for NJ. Of course a crown barrel (clean) would be even better, but there’s the loss of the cool factor.

        Can you confirm it is a muzzle brake at the end of the G1. If so, I’m good go with the rifle (without magazine) – will need to get 10 round mags though.
        thanks again!!!

        • Phil White


          Glad to help Howard! I just called Century to make sure nothing has changed. The flash suppressor is still only pinned no welding involved. It is primarily a flash suppressor but Century says it does have muzzle brake properties as well. The way the holes are drilled and direct muzzle gases I would say it will also serve as a muzzle brake.

          Happy Shooting!

      • Tom

        Phil….In our wonderful communist state of NJ if a barrel has threads on the end, something needs to be attached!! Which has to be a brake, because it has a detachable mag…No threads equals no problems in our state.!!!

    • Tom

      Howard…Did you ever get the G1 FAL….?

      I’m in NJ also and very interested in getting one also…



      • Howard

        Hi Tom,
        No not yet…I’m going to call Century direct and see if they can make it NJ legal….getting mixed messages on muzzle device…some people say brake others say combo brake and suppressor…either way it has to be confirmed it’s a brake and I have to see if Century can weld it to make it NJ legal. If so I plan to get two…one in G1 config and one is standard…these aren’t inherently accurate so I don’t see the need to pay double for DSA………..stay tuned.

    • Tom

      Hey Howard….

      Heres the deal….If your pinky can fit in the end of the device thats attached to the barrel, its considered a FH in our great state…So now we need someone who owns this exact version to confirm these findings…

      Shoot me an email and i can explain things further….


      • h p

        Hi Tom,
        I found an FFL that received the FH equipped FALs …we removed them…pinned STG58 muzzle brakes…he took the official photos and transferred these former assault weapons to me in a post ban configurations.

        I ended up getting a DSA SA58 with medium contour barrel…then my blasting rifle was supposed to be a DSA STG58, but I couldn’t find one…so I settled for a Century R1A1….then…an STG58 became available…so of course I had to have that too!!!

        I’ve only broken in the century barrel..but haven’t actually shot it yet…I can die in peace now…finally getting not one but three of these bad boys after 25+ year wait!!!! Only issue now is find 15 round permanently blocked magazines….

  • Branden


    The 6.8 has at least 80% of the recoil of the 7.62. I have fired that along with the 7.62 and it was hard to tell the difference (in an AR style rifle). I am a 7.62 guy but I understand that the 5.56 is a much more damaging round. The hydro shock from a 5.56 is devastating BUT the problem is the round is so fast that it delivers very little of the kinetic energy into the target. Whereas the slower heaver round from the 7.62 dumps most of it energy into a soft target (knockdown power). Also almost every marine squad I have been out with now has a M-110 style rifle in it. They have found that the insurgents understand the deficiencies of the 5.56’s penetrating power. That even light cover will hinder the round enough to protect them. Where with the 7.62 with go through that wall and in to the target. The 5.56 will have a long life in the military, it is cheaper to produce and you can carrier more of them. The 7.62 will also be there right beside them augmenting them for a long time to come. I am a marksmen at heart and will carry a 7.62 over a 5.56 any day.

    I will be purchasing this rifle next month to augment my collection.

  • specforc12

    If you want to know how effective the British were with this rifle, the L1A1, read the book “Inside the SAS”. There’s good reason that the SAS still love and use this rifle. It’s robust and accurate, and as the other Bloggers have already pointed out, excellent knock-down power.

    You may also recall that during the start of the war a lot of Brits wanted to abandon the L85 Bullpup and requested they send them the L1A1’s to replace them to the Middle-east, and, in fact this was done for many!!!

    The Brits realized long ago that spray-and-pray just doesn’t produce anything effective 9 times out 10. Hell, even with the M-16 I’m always amazed at how difficult and useless that 2nd and 3rd rounds, even in “burst” mode, are – you’re usually just wasting bullets. I would say in true CQB conditions having that “burst” mode is a fine thing, but, that’s about it.

    At that 100 to 300 meter range, yeah, I want to see that conc. block wall splinter apart in front of that “Tango” — it makes a much greater impression.

    Actually, in my opinion, I think everyone should abandon the NATO standard of the 5.56mm and go to the 6.8mm – – – totally the best of both worlds. Do what some of the mfg’s are doing, go to that round for a replacement for the M16/M4 rifles and go to a M16/M4 type with 6.8mm and a piston rather than that cursed gas tube, crap. I always said, the engineeer who designed the M16 obviously never had to clean one!! ‘Nuff said.

  • Chris

    Thank you for the great article and defence of Century guns. I know this is a little late but, I just purchased the above rifle. I wasn’t a big fan of the FAL but, I loved the look and feel of this rifle (and even the SAW stock).

    As to the Century debate. I would be 11 weapons shorter in my collection if I bought into all the bad press Online. Every gun company out there has their fair share of problems. People have to remember that they are after all buying a surplus firearm. Any problem I have ever encountered was fixable at a very small cost. Most of the time it stemmed from the magazines and not the rifle.

    Again thank you and I look forward to more reviews.

  • Evan

    Thank you for the info on the G1, I’m seriously thinking about one. I only saw one comment concerning optics. Is changing the cover the only option? What about drilling and tapping the existing cover and mounting a small rail that way? Also, should I be concerned about the rifle I’m looking at being metric? Thank you for your time.

  • charlie

    I purchased a century arms fn. Shoots outstanding. Shoots all surplus as well as new ammo without any malfunction. Paid 550 for it.

    • Jamieson Colgate

      I have been looking to buy an FN, but where can you find one for that cheap?

  • Mark Schmidt

    Good to see this on Century FALs. I owned one some years ago, an inch pattern, made from South African parts.It had the dreaded “unibrow” receiver. I shot it pretty often with all types of ammo from cheap and dirty surplus to Remington .308 hunting ammo. It NEVER failed to work, never had any malfunction at all, no matter how low the temperature. It was a very well made rifle, and shot into about 3.5 inches. The horror stories about Century arms are just not true. I have owned several CAI rifles and handguns and had one bought with a broken firing pin, which CAI replaced free when I sent the rifle back to them (It was an M1 GARAND that had a terrible rep online, and after the new firing pin, it worked flawlessly for me.)
    I have seen the same BS about Spanish guns, and it boils down to people repeating stories they have read as truth…”My cousin knows somebody who had problems with this gun…”

    It is nonsense, and I am happy to read this review of a very good firearm at a reasonable price.


    • bmrtoyo

      i tried my fal with multiple mags and ammo , fully detail stripped before shooting that pos would jam , worked with gas settings , i dumped that pile and never looked back , my friend bought one of the century garands , i was shooting it and the op rod fell off on the ground , sheer junk , never again ..

  • Suzanne. Tom

    I was wondering where I can get a breakdown for a FA-FAl 308 Cal?

  • Henry

    We had C1 and C2 in the early 70s. I presently have an Ishpore. I got my crossarms with crown on a C1. I could shoot the marker stick at 800 and got a wacking from the SM on my shoulder for sending splinters onto the markers. Inacurate and poor groups, no way! Try shooting with iron sights a 2 inch wide stick at 800! They were easy to clean. But if you pulled the trigger while the action was open, you had a hell of a time putting the trigger group together! Yes it was heavy but in the early 70s we carried 70 plus Lbs for many Km! We were not afraid of any target at any visible distance.

  • morne

    the FN Fal 7.62 (308 WIN)
    if you cant handle the recoil , your a pussy and should stick to using .22 rimfire , the FN FAL was used in the RHODESIAN bush war and continued to be used until the powers that be , decided to cancel private ownership , target’s out to 800 mtr’s was a standard weekend shoot as well as a monthly prize shoot in zimbabwe up until 2005 , The basics are , if you cant handle the recoil or can not handle the rifle , don’t use it , most of you have never used it for its purpose , and are just assault rifle junkies , much like scum , who think they can rate an assault rifle , yet have never been in a war zone or used a rifle for its built purpose , it’s people like you that make me sick , just a bunch of wanker’s who think they would do well in a combat situation with the pee brained , pussy attitudes that you have , Recoil , the only Recoil you know is when your girls pussy has Crabs and you don’t want to go down on her , know what to talk about and know what you are saying before you make a statement , most assault rifles are very good in the hands of professionals and not jumped up dickheads like yourselves , stick to .22 rimfire and your back gardens , dont try and be hardcore in your moms back yard …

    • Wilclielr

      Morne. From experience, people that have been in serious combat situations DON’T discuss such in forums. You’re blatant disrespect for the blogger not to mention the subject matter denotes a serious lack of common sense and knowledge on your part. Please keep to Facebook and try not to share your in conscientious dribble with the rest of us simpletons. Thanks

      • dubbs

        Amen, wilclier! That was nothing but ugliness about a cold war battle rifle and its current civilian version! My generation came up being trained on the M16a1/a2. And the battle rifle concept had been changed by then for nearly 20yrs. As a civie, there’s no urban combat to experience or deployment in the jungles of borneo or chasing SWAPO insurgents in africa!! What we may get to do is shoot a weapon built on a legendary platform at a range( not in a fox hole on the falklands and definitely not hunting-bolt action .308 is more accurate and lighter!)

        Post like the previous one can make the avg person who is curious actually believe the term gun nut…

    • madjak

      My uncle is an 85 year old veteran has had shoulder replaced still likes to shoot , think he might want to know about recoil?? I have a fal its comfortable my MAs 49/56 has almost no recoil and great balance , is my favorite to shoot, fall sights are difficult , very low on the gun and the stock angle makes it more difficult to sight. This rifle needs a sight system about 2″ above the receiver if the recoil is to much check the adjustment for blow back, the g3 is front heavy , m1a needs an adjustable gas system , look at the French MAs 49/56 shorter, little recoil , cheap well made 7.62×54 French , but only has 10 round mags no pistol grip

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  • Sir, my FN FAL rifle barrel is just a plain front barrel without any muzzle comp or bird cage flash hider, compared to British FAL versions or DSA models of FAL rifles. Is my rifle the 1st model or generation? hope o can attached picture.

  • Steven J.

    I haven’t read through the comments, so forgive me if someone had already asked this question, but what is the wire support on the stock’s function?

  • Caesar_Agustus

    Very nice.

  • bmrtoyo

    i had one of those centurys , that was the biggest piece of junk ive ever seen , do not waste your time!! , the old laugh is ,oh thats on of those pos ‘s built by the “century monkeys”

  • Atticus Von Teufel Hunden

    Better late then never I guess but I have owned a Century FAL for approximately ten years. Much the same as the one pictured here on this site. Mine came with a 26 inch barrel which I promptly cut down to 18 inches, recrowned and then welded on a DSA flash hider. I used the set screw holes for the welding and then filed and sanded and painted. I wanted a more jungle carbine look and I definitely got it. I then installed a folding cocking handle (it took some modification to the receiver to work properly) and ‘voila’. My version of a FAL jungle carbine. In all the years I’ve owned it never once has it failed to fire, it’s deadly accurate and a pleasure to shoot. It has become my favorite military style rifle. And being a former Marine that was raised by a career Marine collector/shooter I have owned and fired almost every military rifle ever made. I get all angles when it comes to my FAL. Right from it’s the most awesome rifle I’ve ever seen to it’s the biggest piece of crap I’ve ever seen. Let me put it this way. If and when the shit hits the fan my other rifles will be handed out to those that follow me. The FAL is my duty rifle. So much so that I have over the years bought 4 parts kits for spare parts. None of which I have ever had to use, not even the tiniest spring. I’ve even thought of buying 4 American made receivers and building 4 more rifles from the kits. But, that would be redundant. I can only carry one rifle in a combat situation. And that rifle will be my Century FN FAL.