The title says it all. We have compiled a list of the the top five rifles never to buy. It’s a short list to help you, our audience, save money and keep your stress level under control. Anyone who is honest with themselves, and has been a gun enthusiast for any length of time, will tell you they have made mistakes. We aren’t talking about mistakes at the range that resulted in a negligent discharge or some other calamity, we are talking about mistakes of the wallet.

It wasn’t that long ago, in a period I like to refer to as the Golden Age of Surplus before nonsensical guns laws were enacted, that a person could find dozens of rifles that were hardly shot and ridiculously priced. If you are 30 or older you will remember the days of $79 Chinese SKS rifles or $99 Lee Enfield SMLE rifles still packed in cosmolene. During that golden age of surplus, several guns on the top of our list were imported and sold to unsuspecting buyers. Let’s turn our attention to the first of the worst.


#1 MAS 49/56 

Top 5 Rifles: To Never Buy
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Name: MAS 49/56

Country of Origin: France

Caliber: 7.5 x 54mm (imported and rechambered to  7.62x 51mm Nato)

Why?: This gun was originally chambered in 7.5mm x 54mm, then Century Arms rechambered a large batch to accept 7.62mm x 51mm. The idea from Century Arms was to take semi auto military rifles and obviously make them easy to sell in the United States market in a more obtainable caliber. The experiment failed miserably, to put it mildly. MAS 49/56 were prone to jamming, slam fire, and the rifles would occasionally let off 2 or 3 round bursts. Century eventually replaced the steel firing pins with a shorter firing pin made of a softer metal. The MAS49/56 was a great looking rifle that was cheap, and would have done well on the market if it had been designed with more care.

#2 MAS 36