Top 5 Guns That Are Banned (That We Wish Weren’t)

Before 1989, the marketplace for semi-automatic rifles in the USA was much broader and offered consumers many interesting choices. Some 25 years later things have recovered a bit, but still there are many designs from abroad that enthusiasts in the USA simply cannot get ahold of due to arbitrary rulings.
In this list, we take a look at five guns that are legal to own, buy, and sell in the US, but are banned from import.

I’ll admit, making this video made me sad.

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Transcript …

– [Alex] Hey guys, it’s Alex C with TFB TV.

The topic of today’s top five is going to be the top five banned guns.

These are all firearms that are banned from import into the USA under the 1989 George Bush executive order.

Basically, in 1968, the Gun Control Act established that non-sporting firearms were not suitable for import and the very strange executive order made it so that if an AR-15 was made here in the USA, it’s legal for sale.

But when made in, say, Denmark, it is illegal because, reasons? Maybe foreign guns are just scary to politicians, or maybe the reduction in competition was just a convenient boost for domestic manufacturers, but I digress.

Anyways, let’s get on with it.

We’re gonna start with the FN FNC, which is one of my favorite rifles of all time.

The FNC was imported by HOWCO, Steyr, and Gun South, and about 6 or 7000 were brought in.

It is the standard service rifle of Belgium.

Sweden has the AK-5, and Indonesia as well.

A good amount of them have been legally converted to select fire by either a Registered Receiver Conversion, as done my companies like Fleming, or with the addition of a legally registered auto sear, like this example.

The FNC has some great features including a gas setting for adverse conditions that simply slides over a hole and allows less gas to escape.

The folding stock is very rigid, and when folded, allows for a very nice and compact package that is great for vehicle crewmen.

The rear sight is flip-adjustable for 250 and 400 meters, and the front sight is a simple post that is adjustable for elevation.

The selector is nice and intuitive, and goes from safe, to semi, to three-round burst, to auto, but this is of course only for select fire models.

A bolt hold open is present, but it must be manually operated by pulling the bolt back and pulling the charging handle out.

Like an AR-15, the FNC’s upper and lower are held together by two takedown pins, and it hinges right open for cleaning.

Many people have likened the FNC to the AK, and it’s easy to see why.

Seen here’s the piston and carrier, which are one piece, and the bolt which looks suspiciously similar.

Anyways, the FNC just works.

I’ve shot this gun thousands of times and it doesn’t jam.

It’s damn accurate, controls are great, and I really wish that FN would bring these in like they do the SCAR.

We can all dream.

So next up, we have the HK Legacy guns.

This category includes all the Cold War stamp pieces that everyone wants.

I say this because people aren’t exactly chomping at the bit to get a hold of their $3000 AR-15’s.

They say there’s nothing more dangerous than entrenched success, and you could use HK as a textbook example.

They were at one point making over 2000 G3 rifles a day, and in the 80’s every police department was clamoring for MP5’s and pretty much anything else that they made.

Hell, HK even got into the hunting rifle business because people just couldn’t get enough of their stuff.

Then, in 1989, the ban stopped Americans from getting roller delayed goodness like the HK 91, 93, and 94.

In 1989, the ATF sent letters to manufacturers seeking their input about just how sporting their rifles were, and exactly one company attempted to stop this nonsense.

Thank company, H&K.

HK even posted advertisements discussing how useful their firearms were for various sporting purposes, and encouraged HK owners to write the ATF with accounts of how they had used their products as sporting arms.

The one company to step up and say this isn’t right was the company supposedly hates us.

Maybe HK doesn’t hate us after all.

Anyways, many shooters are familiar with the stamped HK’s.

Many have been converted to MP5’s, G3’s, 53’s and 33’s, but the tap got shut off and it doesn’t seem like HK can recover.

After 89, guns like the SP89 and PSG1 were legal to import, but that all stopped in 1994 with an additional ban.

So, HK got hurt very badly twice in five years, and people wonder why they’re hesitant to place a bid on the American marketplace today.

While I can’t say I blame them, you look at companies like PTR, POF, and Zenith, and you see that the demand is there.

Damn you, 1989 ban.

So next up is the Beretta AR70, the service rifle of the Italian military.

The AR70 was briefly imported into the USA but I’ve heard all kinds of rumors regarding its importation, including one that Beretta was hesitant to ship them here.

I suppose some proof I have would be that the box says “Congratulations on “the purchase of your new Beretta shotgun,” and lists the gauge as 223.

It isn’t unusual to see something like that, I suppose, but you usually see caliber/gauge.

Anyways, the Beretta AR70 is essentially an Italian SIG 550.

Stamped, relatively simple long-stroke piston, and a rotating bolt.

Some neat features are present though, including an AR-15-like spring-loaded dust cover, easy to remove mags that rock in like an AK, rear-mounted flip sights, a fixed front sight post and a flash hider/barrel shroud combo that unscrews for grenade launching.

The trigger mechanism is very FAL-like with an offset spring.

Now, my one beef would be that to get the rifle from safe to fire, you push the selector upwards, and this is contrary to just about every other gun I have.

The receiver hinges open for cleaning like an AR-15 as well, and this is quite nice, all things considered.

It’s a shame that this piece is unimportable, but the biggest shame is that it’s being replaced by Fish Gun, I mean, the new ARX.

Next up is, well, I’ll just say it.

The best AK-pattern rifles that have ever been imported into the USA, The Finnish Valmet rifles.

The Finns have a history of taking Russian small arms and really making them their own with various improvements, and when they got a hold of AK’s, they kept this tradition.

Valmets came into the US in many configurations and calibers, stamped, milled, 5.56, 7.62 by 39, and even 308.

The common variants here in the US are the RK 62-derived guns, and this is essentially an RK 62 76 with a wooden stock.

Unfortunately, I do not have the sling, which is actually made from reindeer hide.

I’m not kidding.

Anybody familiar with the AK platform would really admire the Valmet rifles.

Controls are similar with the hybrid safety dust cover, rock-in mags, and familiar charging handle.

Not satisfied with a sight mounted on the barrel a la the Nineteenth Century? The Finns rear aperture sighted the Valmets and made it so the ladder flips forward for night sights.

The front sight is hooded, but also had a flip-up night sight.

This assembly is similar to any other AK, but you notice that the piston has a series of extensions to allow for less slop and a smoother shooting experience.

Also, if you’re like me, and you hate fumbling with the gas tube lever on AK’s, the Valmets have a small tube that comes out of a dovetailed section from the rear.

The Valmet is still hefty, though.

Coming in at 3.6 kilos…

and about eight freedoms.

I wish these guns were still being brought in for reasonable prices.

There are plenty of AK’s out there today that are truly amazing, but think, if it weren’t for the 89 ban, we could have Finnish guns like these and RK 95’s.

So lastly, we have the Daewoos.

These were cheap when they were for sale in the USA, and people really didn’t pay that much attention to them.

This model is the K1A1, the civilian version of the Korean military’s K1.

The Daewoo K1A1 could accurately be called Korea’s AR-15.

Liberal uses of aluminum, Stoner-style psuedo-direct impingement, and controls that are almost identical.

They shoot very well and are comfortable to carry, and I figure if they’re good enough to point at the minions of a certain peninsula-based dictator, they’re probably good enough for anything I’m going to do with them.

The Daewoo K1A1’s feature, a magazine release access by your pointer, a right side charging handle, a thumb-actuated safety, and a familiar ping pong paddle bolt release.

The collapsible stock has three positions, but I’m not too crazy about it.

It isn’t flimsy, but the metal tines heat up like crazy, and your cheek will not thank you for that.

The rear sight is almost identical to an M16A1’s and the front sight post is similar as well.

The rear sight is also flip adjustable.

The receiver pivots open like an AR-18, and you can remove the recoil springs, guide rods, and bolt group.

Humorously, the bolt group looks like an M16’s carrier’s tail snapped off.

All in all, the Daewoos are accurate, light, simple, and fun, and it’s a shame that we can’t get any more of them.

So the 1989 ban on foreign quote, non-sporting, end quote firearms is one of the strangest and most confusing pieces of gun legislation on the books.

The strangest part is that if any of the firearms on this list were made here, they would be legal.

What the feds deem as non-sporting can be something as simple as magazine configuration, or even the rear sight setup.

And to me, that’s some arbitrary nonsense.

Anyways, thanks for watching our new video.

We hope that, if anything, it showed you either a gun you maybe had not seen before, or got you writing a letter to someone trying to change our bizarre process for deeming what is okay and what isn’t.

Big thanks to Ventura Munitions, our ammunition sponsor, for making our videos possible.

We hope to see you next time.

(gun cocks) (bursts of gunfire)



Alex C.

Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.


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  • M.M.D.C.

    Pic of Bush in the vid. Comments go political in 3,2,1…

    • MR

      They always do, regardless. But in this case, it hasn’t been bad so far. The picture isn’t really a political statement, it just illustrates that this guy, who we all recognize from the Dana Carvey skits on SNL, is the guy who enacted the legislative order that we’re talking about. Like showing a picture of Mikhail Kalashnikov when talking about an AK47. If you have to go political, it reminds us that you can’t trust anybody based on their political affiliation, alone.

    • MrEllis

      As a dirty hippie type, I don’t even see the need to worry about it. I try to focus on actual gun info, not bemoaning and gnashing of teeth. This was more fun to watch for the guns than any statement or message. I wouldn’t mind sniffing on that FNC, that’s for sure.

  • Lance

    Should have added the Polytech AKS-762 which was as close to areal Type-56 you could get too. Got to love the SKS bayonet on a AK anyway.

    • Steve_7

      Actually I just remember another gun based on that comment, the Maadi semi-auto AKMs. Now those were as close as you could get to a Russian AKM. I had one, some f–ker stole it though.

  • USMC03Vet

    I feel like Jerry Miculek’s latest video was a direct response to TFB pumping out top vids at the cyclic lately. Alex has hit legit Youtube status.

  • Lance

    Ohh and quick history lesson on the 1989 import ban. Its due to the Stockton CA school massacre a year earlier. In which a nut job with a Polytech AK killed 12 from his car. This started the who crap on “assault weapons”. George H.W. Bush was never a conservative a Republican and was no friend to gun owners. His education secretary wanted to enact what would become the Clinton gun ban that came five years later under Billy Clinton. GOP pleaded not to due this so Bush enacted a smaller ban on none sporting arms. So any rifle with a pistol grip bayonet lug or threaded muzzle where banned. And so all Polytechs where banned as well as the gun you mentioned and so Norinco was the few mfgs who skirt the ban by making the neutered MAK-90 and hence you got a crappy thumb hole stock and a barrel w/o bayonet lug and muzzle break.

    Bush hoped since ARs and M-1As where still legal he could please both sides of the fight over MSRs. How ever this and his breaking his “No New taxes” pledge sealed his fate to the even more militant anti gunner Billy Clinton in 1992 and hence lead to the Clinton gun ban which expired in 2004.

    • Kelly Jackson

      It also had to do with the Chinese flooding the US market with cheap guns.
      I remember when K-mart sold SKS rifles for $79

      • Lance

        Makes you wanna cry doesn’t it, remembering.

      • codfilet

        I remember gun shows back then, with wooden crates full of new Chinese SKS rifles and AKs. Next to them would be crates of yellow-box Norinco ammo.

        • Ed Gruberman

          LOL. I use to scoff at new SKS for $79, years later I finally bought a really beat up one for $350… ๐Ÿ™

          • MR

            Picked mine up in early 2013 for $250. Gave serious consideration to grabbing the other three on the rack, as well.

      • Michael Lubrecht

        Heck, I bought my NIB Daewoo K1A1 in about 1988 for $279. It sold a couple of years ago for $2000.

        • iksnilol

          Congrats on the 1400 dollar profit ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Reasoned thought

      The news media feeds into this calling everything roughly AK-patterned an “AK-47” the looser (I won’t use his name) who shot up Fairchild AFB used a norinco mak 90, media reported it as AK-47… yes it is an AK, but calling a lincon a ford or vice versa is not honest, using the scary name that the uneducated recognize is not journalism. … sorry end soap box

  • plingr2

    If you like Valmet, what do you think about Galil (especially about ARM version) ?

  • Wolfgar

    I remember the ban very well, it was the first time I realized the Republicans were just as bad as the democrats when it came to our Constitutional rights. The only real information we had about MSRs back then came from Soldier of Fortune, Survival magazine, Gung Ho, SWAT magazine and other types of reading material. I did notice they kept these magazines next to the porno shelf section of reading material and I had to scoot by the pervs to get to them . I guess MSRs are more sociably acceptable these days LOL. Another great video and review Alex.

    • Tassiebush

      here in australia i have to pretend I’m checking out the porn mags just to avoid being judged

      • Wolfgar

        ROTFLMAO

        • Tassiebush

          You think I jest but I wouldn’t dream of approaching the counter with guns and game or backwoodsman without first sandwiching it between publications like Readers Wives and Naughty Brits! I always ask for a bag too!

          • Wolfgar

            Sorry you live in a society that has its morals and values so screwed up. On that note I never really cared what others thought or believed was OK or not OK. I always consider the source and live my life as I deem acceptable. Good luck to you.

          • Tassiebush

            There are a lot of good things about my country or perhaps its my community. It’s a warm and friendly place for the most part. But yeah I do need to keep aspects of who I am private. When people know me I’ll be open about the fact that I hunt and if anything meat hunting has probably become a bit more acceptable in the local community over the years but once you start talking about armed self defence you’re on your own in the argument. It’s funny it’s on the one hand universal I’d say that people believe in the right to defend themselves but they just don’t seem able to reconcile that with getting a gun to defend themselves. Even if they accept that idea then they’ll be very unlikely to accept a firearm that is well suited to self defence.
            Our media is doubtless a large part of this. It is very biased against guns. We rarely get news of defensive shootings here but they certainly pull out all stops to cover accidents and shooting sprees.

          • Wolfgar

            There are good and bad people in all nations but society can be a fickle thing especially the way the media can bend and shape opinions. I have a firearm for self defense for the same reason I have a fire extinguisher. I don’t relish having to use either one but I’m glad I have them if needed. I do enjoy owning, shooting, hunting, and collecting firearms and give no apology for it. Hunting if done with regulation only benefits the animals and habitat. This is not even arguable. Sounds like you have the same news press as we do LOL.

    • ChierDuChien

      Bush 41 was a RINO.

      if Hillary gets elected with a democrat Congress on her coattails, the US will have Australian-Style gun control.

      No military-looking weapons will be allowed and even the British-style straight-pull AR’s will be a No-No. Senator Feinstein will actually get to demand “Turn them in Mr. & Mrs. America, Right Now”.

      If the Congress stays GOP, Hillary won’t be able to do much, if anything.

      • MichaelZWilliamson

        That depends. The courts have been a mixed bag.

      • ToyMachine

        You think 90% of the GOP aren’t RINO? Good luck with that. RINO Trump will give RINO controlled congress the cover they need to obtain their “common sense” power grabs “for the children”, removing what few rights we have left. The best we can hope for is to keep the branches working against each other.

  • Major Tom

    My Top 5 Firearms/Firearm Families That Are Banned For Whatever Reason Theirs Or Ours Or Whatever (And I Wish Weren’t):

    1: AK-12
    2: AS/VSS rifle in 9×39 (Yeah, the Val/Vintorez)
    3: M240
    4: Tavor TAR-21 (includes MTAR) in full auto.
    5: That sweet, sweet suppressed M3 Grease Gun with red dot sight they got in the Philippines.

    • ShootCommEverywhere

      In my opinion;

      1. AS/VSS
      2. AK107
      3. MG3
      4. KS23
      5. MP7

    • I would seriously think about how many toes I REALLY need if it would get me a VSS.

      • DW

        I don’t think the SR3 family is (materially) that expensive, they are 9X39 VZ58s w/o bho and uses rotating bolt instead of tilting ones. Their silencers appear quite simple (and perhaps elegant?). SADJ once did a review of one and is very impressed.

        • iksnilol

          VZ58 without BHO and tilting bolt?

          So basically very little like a VZ?

    • mikewest007

      Insultingly enough, you can own a Tavor in Canada!
      Or I’m confusing it with the Chinese thinger, the Type 97. One of those isn’t legal in the US but is in Canada.

      • nick

        we get both ๐Ÿ™‚

        and i dont understand at all, why you guys down south cant get anything NORINCO, or even some Russian milsurp, like the SVT 40’s ?, that one i dont get at all!

        • Steve_7

          Clinton banned Chinese imports in 1993, there was a theory (which may have been fact) that the Chinese were actually trying to destabilize the US based on the numbers on their Form 6 applications. In 1996, Polytech was caught violating the ban.

          The ban on Russian guns is more specific, it exempts a variety of sporting guns.

  • Kivaari

    I remember selling my M62 Valmet. That was a fantastic AK-pattern rifle. Better than all the others or on a par with Galils. I foolishly sold the Galils as well. Live and get dumber as time goes by.

    • eddyjames

      I loved my M62,and have owned one or more of all the banned guns with the exception of the Galils. Wish I still had them all.

  • KestrelBike

    Woof, that Beretta upward-safety-selector is terribly counter-intuitive (as I believe evidenced by every other rifle moving the selector downwards to bring into a firing position, as mentioned in the video).

    • Reasoned thought

      I wonder if that isn’t training, I like the de-cock/safety down movement on older Ruger pistols/Beretta pistols, if that was all you ever shot, switching to a rifle where flipping the safety “UP” to fire might seem natural.

  • codfilet

    No love for the Street Sweeper? I always regretted not buying one when I had the chance.

    • DW

      Trigger and ergo sucks, and since then other drum-fed shotguns appeared.

      • iksnilol

        Whaaaaat?

        Are you saying that a 12 shot 12 gauge cylinder isn’t the best thing to feed a DAO weapon?

    • L. Roger Rich

      I owned one bur had to get rid of it after it was re-classified as a Destructive device which i could not own in my home stste. All in all it was a poorly made weapons. Made 2 trips back to the factory due to the aluminum 12 rd cylinder severating. The 2 stage DA trigger was long anv about 15 pounds. After 2 volleys of 23 rounds which could be done in 3 Seconds. Extraction and reloading was like a Colt 1892. Then you had to crank it up. Much better shoties out there now days like the KelTec KSG and Saigas. (I have both,)

      • codfilet

        Yeah, I remember looking at them at gun shows back then, but I never bought one. After doing a bit of research on them lately, I’m glad I didn’t buy one!

    • Steve_7

      The Street Sweeper wasn’t banned in 1989 and isn’t banned now, it was banned 1994-2004 but they simply reclassified it as a destructive device.

  • StefaniaBelmondo

    I think you want to see Sakos, not Valmets. Any of the newer RK’s are manufactured by Sako, including the RK-95.

  • lifetimearearesident

    Perhaps there was a consumer price benefit to the ban. The ban allowed the AR-15 platform to virtually control the market and at least in my view lowered prices as any company could build parts for it. We lost variety but gained economies of scale. I am not suggesting that I support the ban I am simply pointing out a possible economic consequence of the ban which the gun grabbers did not see.

    • Budogunner

      I can’t put any price on freedom. No potential market gain is worth its loss.

      • Scott P

        Exactly. I’d rather the market decide success or failure than some arbitrary illegal government ban.

  • Mike Price

    Looks like he has these laying on rough cement floor scratching the heck out of them every time he moves them. Put something down. Anything. Piece of carpet, some felt.

  • UCSPanther

    This was the result of the “moral panic” over assault weapons that was reaching its fever pitch in the 1980-1990s.

    • Ed Gruberman

      California is still trying to “improve” on their original ban, now 27 years later. Idiots!

  • Joseph Smith

    “Maybe HK doesn’t hate us after all.”

    Crazy talk!!!

    • A.F.

      I would stay with Alex C on that issue. Also I want to add something which you might not know about German laws: It is illegal to sell “Kriegswaffen” aka. military issue rifles to consumers from Germany that also includes parts of these guns and other stuff. A gun has to be changed to not allow a conversion to full auto for example. That also applies to licensed firearms. When H&K gave building licenses to Turkey and Pakistan they had to include a paragraph that the Turks and Pakistani builders didn’t sell the guns to consumers and some countries HK wasn’t allowed buy German law to sell their weapons to. So quite complaining that you can’t get a real HK 417 or 416 or whatever it will never happen as long as HK is a German based company. Sig got around that, because their military arms and their headquarters is in Switzerland and they have other laws there.

  • Friend of Tibet

    Although I am not a M14 guy, but I have seen some extremely quality Chinese M14 in Canada that are just AMAZING in price. I do own a Norinco M4 fitted with BCM KMR and Aimpoint(abused in mud and all extreme environment). And yes I have a DD M4 as well(safe queen tho). besides cosmetic details I gotta say US is losing a lot by banning Norinco. They are very reliable firearms that are cheap but extremely tough.

    • nick

      …and , as a great low cost base, yon can then outfit (M-305 / M-14) with all the high end springs, buffers and barrel types you might want !
      i run one that only has the NORINCO receiver left on it ;-), but out of the box, it was still pretty good

  • MrEllis

    The only thing this video has done for me is have me Google “FN FNC semi-auto for sale” and then run scenario after scenario where I can justify spending three grand on something I don’t need…

    There is no good opener to that one.

    “Honey, I have a floating rib and it’s considered optional by our insurer…”

  • Anthony “stalker6recon”

    I have always loved H&K, it is a shame what that executive order and later ban did to them, and so many other gun makers. The order and laws subsequent of what makes a weapon legal or illegal is always stupid. States like calipornia have ridiculous laws regarding supposed assault rifles, and even the minimum 16 inch barrel law, is idiotic. I guess they fail to understand that longer barrels make these weapons more dangerous, due to increased range, accuracy and velocity.

    Try hitting a target using a short barreled M4 at 600 meters. Then use a 20 inch barreled AR15 with optics at the same distance. The government has never proven to be that smart. And their laws have made a mess of the firearms industry and only serve to frustrate and scare law abiding civilians.

    I would love to hear the conversation of criminals, debating the legality of the guns they have acquired illegally in the first place.

    Now I live in the Philippines, if you though gun laws in the US were stupid and prohibitive, try navigating the nightmare of gun laws in the Philippines. They consider a Norinco clone of the MP5 chambered in 9mm,a high powered rifle, banned for sale in elections years. How dumb is that?

  • Leo

    Shame we are ban anything on this list, no logic at all!

    • L. Roger Rich

      Democrats hate all firearms.

      • Reasoned thought

        … did you miss that in was REAGAN that passed … by EXECUTIVE ORDER the ban being discussed here? (not defending Dems… they suck on guns more than R generally)

        • ChierDuChien

          Hillary wants “Australian Style Gun Control”.
          You have been warned !!!!!

          It was RINO Bush 41, NOT Reagan who banned the weapons.

          • Cottersay

            Yes Chien, but unfortunately Reagan also did his share of banning too. ๐Ÿ™

          • Reasoned thought

            Oh I know, and under no circumstances will I vote for Hillary, even if Trump is the nominee, but I won’t vote for Trump either.

      • asoro

        they are afraid they may be used on them when they take your rights away

        • TSA_TheSexualAssault

          I’m afraid that we may be using them on each other until the ammo is used up. H. may be observing from a small secure room.

          God-given rights don’t go away, they are merely “infringed” until you apply the correct amount of persuasion to stop it.

      • ChierDuChien

        Once the democrats retake the US Congress, semi-autos will be banned. It’s just a matter of time. Enjoy them while you can.

        • L. Roger Rich

          Trump will win and the Republicans have the Congress.

  • midnitelamp

    Draganov

  • L. Roger Rich

    Valmet (a Government owned Co.) went out of the firearms business in the late 1980. AKs and ammo importation were ban by the UN and Obama 6 years ago. Thus USA make AKs now.
    The Daewoo was a heavy rifle. I have a modded DR200 (Post AW Ban production.) It is now offset by piston AR 15’s.
    In 1994 Clinton enacted the ban of Chinese guns and Assault Weapons. That killed a lot of guns.
    Tis is the facts Jack.

  • Itz Noonyaz

    Author stated “freedoms”, while discussing arbitrary bans enacted by the US gov’t. Derp. Kidding, but it is contradictory.

  • Core

    Great informational video. Thanks Alex.

  • Reasoned thought

    Just a thought on “non-sporting” … what about 3 gun or other action shooting sports? Is it not possible (I’m not familiar with the wording of the ban) that sports have moved along/changed enough that there are now sporting uses for all of theses firearms? Nope not going to use any of the above for Deer hunting (though you could) … but AR/AK dominate 3 gun… would be nice to see some variety.

    • Cymond

      ATF has started that they do not consider action shooting matches as a sport.

  • Steve_7

    What the…? Are any of those guns even made anymore? The best guns that were banned from import by the 1989 import ban were clearly the SIG SG550-series guns and the FA MAS. Mainly because you still can’t really get them in the US and they’re good. There are copies of the AUG, but the SIG-Sauer SG551-A1 isn’t in the same league as the original, the barrel is inferior.

    But there are endless copies of the H&K and the Daewoo, FNC and AR-70 are nothing special. Valmet is okay but there are other decent AK-type guns.

  • TSA_TheSexualAssault

    Don’t forget pre-1989 FAL’s from Belgium or Argentina. Real arsenal goodness that is frequently sub-MOA out of the box with good fmj. Then, there are the US-assembled FAL’s with US receivers and part-kit furniture: good-bad-ugly, depending on assembler. I miss $129 delivered cases of CAVIM!

    • L. Roger Rich

      I’ve got a great FN FAL. Started life as a CAI with Hillary Hole stock. It has an Imbel receiver and compliant parts. Got it looking like a active battle rifle with bi-pod. It is basically a G1 with a few L1A1 parts on it like barrel, folding charging handle and suppressor. Even put a fake rack number on the wood stock. Great looking rifle.

      • TSA_TheSexualAssault

        I’m looking for a set of Canadian C-1 adjustable peeps. They are at least as nice as M-14 or M-16A1, rather than flip-over “near/far” sights.
        Not very different from basic idea of TechSights fully-adjustable, but mil-spec-sturdy cost-is-not-a-thing.

        FAL is a good battle rifle even missing select-fire. US-compliant can be excellent shooter, and strength-building like all FAL’s. Rhodesians pinned most of their R1’s semi-only to save ammo. Kadaffy’s stock of full-auto vintage FAL’s were fun on video, but ineffective when the stock is afraid to be planted on an Arab shoulder. Aiming at point-targets is good.