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joeypounds
04-20-2012, 7:54 PM
Anyone have a CA legal CETME rifle. Is there a way to get one here? A military semi auto .308 for the $500 range seems like it could be worth a try. Sold my M4 so looking for something new.

jchen76@gmail.com
04-20-2012, 8:23 PM
Hard to find one these days if you can find one at $500. My friend has one, goes bang every time but the fit and finish are no where near other as reputable HK based clones. He needs a pin and hammer to remove the rear take down pins. Fitting the bullet button for these rifles are challenge, so friend went with solar tactical wrap.

If you want a cetme/hk 91 clone, look into PTR91.

joeypounds
04-20-2012, 8:53 PM
Yeah I heard about the PTR91. Any stocking dealers here or could I just order disassembled from Atlantic Arms and sent to FFL?

MrPlink
04-20-2012, 8:56 PM
Ptr is the way to go, but its gonna run much more than 500

jchen76@gmail.com
04-20-2012, 8:56 PM
When buddy bought the CETME, he had it shipped from Henderson Defense in 2 pieces to the FFL. AA may actually install the bullet button.

joeypounds
04-20-2012, 9:11 PM
I see Atlantic has the GI listed as $899.
Worth it?

MrPlink
04-20-2012, 9:18 PM
GI is good. Closer to mil models than most other PTRs. It wont be quite as precise, but it wont be as picky with ammo either.

jchen76@gmail.com
04-20-2012, 9:21 PM
If for plinking, PTR91 are good. The newer PTR91's have a picatinny rail on the receiver, if you want to put an optic, you'll either need to put an old school Hensoldt mount or BT/MFI mount which is another $100 or so. Accessories are limited, but mags are dirt cheap. Like $5 or so for 20 round rebuild.

MrPlink
04-20-2012, 9:25 PM
Wow are mags up to that much? I remember buying boxes of surp mags for nothing! About a dollar a mag, maybe less... Its been a while

jchen76@gmail.com
04-20-2012, 9:27 PM
Wow are mags up to that much? I remember buying boxes of surp mags for nothing! About a dollar a mag, maybe less... Its been a while

Yeah, you pay for Cali's inflated rates.

http://www.cheaperthandirt.com/MAG304-36.html is $1.97 but they won't ship to Cali.

MrPlink
04-20-2012, 9:29 PM
Good point.. Sometimes for just sheer minutes i forget where i live...

docsmileyface
04-20-2012, 9:31 PM
worst gun i ever owned

nyc71
04-20-2012, 10:03 PM
A friend of mine has one it too shoots everything after some fine tuning but it destroys the brass.

saki302
04-21-2012, 4:06 AM
The Century CETME is legal here once converted to complaint form. The BEAUTIFUL MARS CETME is banned by name :( (not like I have 4 grand burning a hole in my pocket for one).

Major things to look out for on Century builds:

FALSE bolt gap by grinding the back of the bolt head *this can be dangerous*
Bent recoil spring rods
sand in the trigger group
semi auto pack shelf welded on the receiver by a drunk monkey
Out of spec mag-wells that need filing for magazines to fit

-Dave

CIV Tactical
04-21-2012, 8:53 AM
check out bravo5 If your looking for real cetme/g3 parts kits. I just ordered there cetme/G3 dedicated marksman kit with 18" US barrel and flash hider. Cost me 458.00 out the door I beleive. You will have to get a receiver and have an ffl build it if you dont want to do it yourself. They have some straight cetme kits for like 300.00 as well.

Richard Erichsen
04-21-2012, 11:03 AM
Anyone have a CA legal CETME rifle. Is there a way to get one here? A military semi auto .308 for the $500 range seems like it could be worth a try. Sold my M4 so looking for something new.

Atlantic will set you up, if you can find one or they manage to still have any in stock. They are no longer being made by Century Arms International. The key changes are the addition of a Bullet Button for a fixed 10 round configuration, but you could just as easily run a Solar Tactical grip strap and use whatever magazines you might already have. I don't know of anyone who fits Solar Tactical straps, if that's a realistic option for you (if you already have pre-ban mags somehow) prior to shipment to the FFL. The receiver will already have a BATF approved receiver configuration with a denial shelf that prevents attaching a full auto, front pin retained lower receiver/trigger frame. CAI rifles are hit and miss for quality and there is no guarantee the one you manage to locate (say, on Gunbroker or elsewhere) will be a worth the trouble of getting it into compliance.

The best way to get a good CETME is to build one. Kits are still available from Bravo5, Scorpion Arms and Apex. Militaryfirearm.com, weaponsguild.com and others have great information on the build process, tool rental and information on local build parties. We have a local build party in San Bernardino coming up in June that may be an option for you if you can't find one that is more local.

R

Richard Erichsen
04-21-2012, 11:25 AM
The Century CETME is legal here once converted to complaint form. The BEAUTIFUL MARS CETME is banned by name :( (not like I have 4 grand burning a hole in my pocket for one).

Major things to look out for on Century builds:

FALSE bolt gap by grinding the back of the bolt head *this can be dangerous*
Bent recoil spring rods
sand in the trigger group
semi auto pack shelf welded on the receiver by a drunk monkey
Out of spec mag-wells that need filing for magazines to fit

-Dave

* Not all CAI rifles had ground bolt heads and a new bolt head will set you back only about $60.

* Bent recoil spring rods are easy enough to bend straight on your lap that it's hardly worth mentioning.

* Gritty trigger groups are par for the course and a full field strip with the high tech edition of a garden hose and nozzle will get that all out of the trigger box.

* Quality of the welding throughout can be spotty, there is no way to know if it was done right or poorly. As long as the denial shelf is straight and at the correct height, pretty won't matter. Same for welds to the rear sight base, trunnion and the seam down the bottom that holds the folded left and right sides of the receiver together.

* Mag wells are among the easiest to fix on these receivers. If too loose, you can use a vice to squeeze it shut, or even a deadblow hammer and a hunk of wood to beat it back to where the magazine is a snug fit that will latch to the barrel trunnion with minimal play. If it is too tight, working the magazine itself back and forth, tapping with a hammer on the inside or using sheet metal pliers can open it up. The steel is soft and any filing to make the lip of the magazine well flush is a matter of 10-20 minutes with set of files. Use tape around the outside of the magazine well to protect the finish while filing.

Given that CAI rifles are a mixed bag of the good, the bad and the ugly but fully functional, building one yourself is often the best approach. Build parties are an option but if you can weld, you can do the most detailed build work yourself.

R

joefrank64k
04-21-2012, 11:41 AM
I've got one. Picked it up from another CG'r for $400 w/ 3 20-round rebuilds. He got it from the Henderson Group Buy.

I installed this BB: http://www.parallaxtactical.com/store/assault-planet-designs-hk-ptr-91-bullet-button-578.html AWESOME design...works great, straightforward install. Lots of fun to shoot. Goes great with my FR-8, too! :)

saki302
04-21-2012, 1:16 PM
The one I repaired for a friend had the ground bolt head. We swapped it out with an unground one, and +4 rollers, and it gaps on the wider side for now (longer wear time).

The dirt in the trigger pack and bent spring rod tells me they didn't give a single care while building these things. FIxable, but unforgivable on a rifle built and sold in modern times IMO. I used patience and WD40 to do a full detailed strip and clean.

His denail shelf was welded crooked- by almost 1/16 of an inch. AKA blind monkey with an arc welder. It still works, it's just UGLY. THe rest of his welds were fine. The rear push pins are so tight (off) that you need a punch to remove them, but I didn't feel comfortable filing off enough metal to allow them free movement.
Another crap thing was their cocking tube is out of spec, so they welded an extension to the bolt carrier so the cocking handle has enough length to unlock the bolt. Fix the symptom, not the problem :rolleyes:

His mag well was too long- the mags wouldn't lock. I had to file it upwards until the mag latched freely.

Back then there was no solar grip wrap- The base of the pistol grip frame was cut off, the rest of the grip cut, then the base welded back on roughly level with the trigger guard. It works well enough at the range now, and he can use the old pre-ban 20 rounders with it.

The CETMEs do kick a bit less than the HKs (probably the buffer), but I notice more mechanical noise while firing his. I guess it was a good deal- I think he paid $300 for it- though without my help a paid gunsmith fix would have doubled the price.

-Dave



* Not all CAI rifles had ground bolt heads and a new bolt head will set you back only about $60.

* Bent recoil spring rods are easy enough to bend straight on your lap that it's hardly worth mentioning.

* Gritty trigger groups are par for the course and a full field strip with the high tech edition of a garden hose and nozzle will get that all out of the trigger box.

* Quality of the welding throughout can be spotty, there is no way to know if it was done right or poorly. As long as the denial shelf is straight and at the correct height, pretty won't matter. Same for welds to the rear sight base, trunnion and the seam down the bottom that holds the folded left and right sides of the receiver together.

* Mag wells are among the easiest to fix on these receivers. If too loose, you can use a vice to squeeze it shut, or even a deadblow hammer and a hunk of wood to beat it back to where the magazine is a snug fit that will latch to the barrel trunnion with minimal play. If it is too tight, working the magazine itself back and forth, tapping with a hammer on the inside or using sheet metal pliers can open it up. The steel is soft and any filing to make the lip of the magazine well flush is a matter of 10-20 minutes with set of files. Use tape around the outside of the magazine well to protect the finish while filing.

Given that CAI rifles are a mixed bag of the good, the bad and the ugly but fully functional, building one yourself is often the best approach. Build parties are an option but if you can weld, you can do the most detailed build work yourself.

R

Richard Erichsen
04-21-2012, 6:43 PM
The one I repaired for a friend had the ground bolt head. We swapped it out with an unground one, and +4 rollers, and it gaps on the wider side for now (longer wear time).

Well done, where was the bolt gap before and after?

The dirt in the trigger pack and bent spring rod tells me they didn't give a single care while building these things. FIxable, but unforgivable on a rifle built and sold in modern times IMO. I used patience and WD40 to do a full detailed strip and clean.

Dirty and cruddy is pretty much about all you get these days for four or even five bills. Be content it was easy enough to clean out and lubricate it. The parts were probably in some dirty drawer covered in cobwebs and filled with rat poop before they were fitted to the rifle.

His denail shelf was welded crooked- by almost 1/16 of an inch. AKA blind monkey with an arc welder. It still works, it's just UGLY.

A common fault and correctable with dremel work, weld buildup, then dremeling again and finish filing.

The rear push pins are so tight (off) that you need a punch to remove them, but I didn't feel comfortable filing off enough metal to allow them free movement.

The holes need to be reamed and you'll be good to go. You can do it with a hand drill with a foot on the receiver on a block of wood if you have to. The receiver probably has stock ferrules and these are welded from the outside flush with the surface which tends to leave enough metal intruding into the path of the pin they will be tight without reaming them.

Another crap thing was their cocking tube is out of spec, so they welded an extension to the bolt carrier so the cocking handle has enough length to unlock the bolt. Fix the symptom, not the problem :rolleyes:

If I understood that correctly, the support was extended? If it's working and there is adequate gap (whatever the bolt gap is plus a few thou more, should allow a dime to fit in the gap - called the "dime test") then you are good to go with nothing to fix. In the "ugly but functional" category that's CAI for a bulk of their builds. It's a common flaw in home builds as well, at least yours isn't so hard to charge you need a mule to pull the cocking handle.

His mag well was too long- the mags wouldn't lock. I had to file it upwards until the mag latched freely.

Length can be fixed by shimming from the rear and filing the length, looks like you got it working with filing alone. Obviously nobody tested this before the rifle moved down the assembly line to the next ape-fisted assembly specialist.

Back then there was no solar grip wrap- The base of the pistol grip frame was cut off, the rest of the grip cut, then the base welded back on roughly level with the trigger guard. It works well enough at the range now, and he can use the old pre-ban 20 rounders with it.

Fortunately you're just about $10 from getting a steel lower or for $30 you can get an earlier polymer lower, drop your trigger box into that, attach the grip strap, fit the selector switch and re-attach the lower to the receiver. Total investment: $50-$75 and worth every penny to get your hand around something a bit more ergonomic than the blocky rear of the receiver.

The CETMEs do kick a bit less than the HKs (probably the buffer), but I notice more mechanical noise while firing his. I guess it was a good deal- I think he paid $300 for it- though without my help a paid gunsmith fix would have doubled the price.

He's lucky to have you. Keep it up!

R

saki302
04-21-2012, 7:57 PM
I don't remember the final bolt gap anymore- it was on the wide end of the scale, so the +4s will be good for a long while (probably as long as he owns it).

The rear push pin holes are actually crooked- you can see it when looking through the holes. I was afraid by the time I got it all lines up they'd be egged out too much (and I don't like filing in-spec parts!). The push in (With force), and tap out with a punch and light hammer easily, so they're 'good enough' :D


His cocking tube is too long- so with a standard unmodified bolt carrier, the cocking handle doesn't contact the forward plate enough to cam the bolt open (big fun- unlock bolt with a rubber mallet!). What I noticed century did is build up material in the front of the bolt carrier then grind it round to match the contour. It's about 1/8" of material- just enough for the cocking handle to push against when it cams open.

I'll see if he wants a solar wrap sometime. I've made a few custom kydex wraps already, though laziness kicks in when there's a commercial fix available :D

-Dave

skibuff
04-21-2012, 8:46 PM
The PTR91 GI I got from Atlantic was well worth the extra $450 to not have to do all the crap some CETME owners have to go thru.

I've read alot of guys got great shooters but seems at least the same number had to at minium change rollers.

I talked with a local shop who told me he would order me a CETME but said he would not guarantee it in anyway do to the known issues.

joeypounds
04-22-2012, 7:25 AM
Wow always a wealth of info on Calguns. The build party might be a good route to go. Is there a thread with info? What, when, where, what you need to bring etc.

saki302
04-22-2012, 10:48 AM
One thing if you do the fixes yourself- you will have a SOLID working knowledge of how the CETME/HK rifles operate :D

-Dave

radioburning
04-22-2012, 11:39 AM
Never had to fine tune my CAI CETME. I should get some +2 rollers for it, since the gap is at a bare minimum though. It's not an HK, but is a good chunk of .308 evilness for $500.:43:

Richard Erichsen
04-22-2012, 1:55 PM
Wow always a wealth of info on Calguns. The build party might be a good route to go. Is there a thread with info? What, when, where, what you need to bring etc.

The HK build party details are in the WTB section and the info about it is the Gunsmithing section. Contact Roccobro for details.

R

Richard Erichsen
04-22-2012, 2:16 PM
Never had to fine tune my CAI CETME. I should get some +2 rollers for it, since the gap is at a bare minimum though. It's not an HK, but is a good chunk of .308 evilness for $500.:43:

There is nothing wrong with the CETME, HK would never have had a product without it. Most of their design changes were pretty small and some irrelevant, other than to say perhaps it was different.

CAI simultaneously created the best opportunity to get a cheap CETME and also dragged the reputation for the design down due to chronically sloppy build quality.

Don't knock the CETME, there is nothing wrong with the design and many parts can be directly interchanged with the G3. Holescreek makes parts for the CETME, including cocking tubes and locking pieces. His locking pieces are made in angles other than the standard 50 degrees, which allows the use of barrels of longer lengths than the standard 17.7" barrel. I have both a 40 degree and his latest 45 degree locking piece, which is the same angle as the standard HK G3 locking piece and should have a positive impact on bolt velocity, recoil and possibly accuracy given the longer dwell time with the bolt still in battery.

R

MrPlink
04-22-2012, 2:46 PM
A friend of mine has one it too shoots everything after some fine tuning but it destroys the brass.

that is common to the 91 pattern in general

saki302
04-22-2012, 3:36 PM
Tired of dinged up brass?

http://www.robertrtg.com/pofport_carry.html

Richard Erichsen
04-23-2012, 10:24 AM
They aren't as hard on brass as "destroying it" from the chambers as much as they bend them in half smacking the lip of the ejection port on the way out. That assumes of course you can even find your brass, thrown as it is some 30 feet from you. You can solve this one of two ways:

1) If you are building or doing extensive repairs, weld in a brass deflector and epoxy in a 3 mm thick 70 durometer rubber pad on the face. The brass deflectors are $10 from Numrich's and you can buy high temp silicone rubber from most hardware stores for a few dollars for a square foot.

2) Buy a port buffer from Robert Rtg, HKParts or Numrich's. The POF ones are metal and can scratch the finish, though teflon tape can prevent this. The plastic ones that are new production don't have this issue. Both cost about $25-30. No welding required.

In both scenarios, the brass will end up a few feet from you and should be reloadable 3-5 times (if good quality brass) if that is your goal.

R