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Discussion Starter #1
I recently found a great opportunity to obtain a full auto MP5 at what I think is a good price (won't say so as to avoid looking like a price check) which I've decided I'd be stupid to pass up. The problem is I'm not very smart on them, or the NFA in general. I just got into guns about a year ago (see the registration date on this account), and pretty much all of that time has been spent on handguns (HKs of course) and a little bit on ARs. It's not until the past couple weeks I've gone off trying to do research on the MP5 and its civi versions and the NFA. I feel like I've hit the wall of what I can find on my own. I've read the world of HK article on NFA conversions and learned a lot, but not really knowing much about the inner workings of guns I probably didn't get the full effect.

Well that's my background, the background of the opportunity is a local small custom shop I went in when I was trying to get smart on ARs had 3 MP5s strapped to the wall. One just an SBR, the other two full autos. I asked casually about them that time, wondering if they were clones or actual HKs (no touching sign, wrong side facing for logo), and the owner said they were HK. He alluded to the fact they would be conversions from civilian models, and mentioned HK94, but didn't outright state that's what they were. He was talking in the more general sense that any transferrable auto is going to be a conversion (is this completely true?). All are full-size with the collapsible stock, so based on my current understanding these would have had to have started as HK94s, right? I went back a few weeks later since I couldn't get them out of my head to inquire a little more seriously. This time it wasn't the owner I was talking to, and this guy didn't seem to know as much. I'm going to need to go back and talk to the owner again, but I need to know what questions to ask to make an informed decision.

Of the select-fires, one was a 4-position (don't remember if 2 or 3 shot), and the other was 3-position. Both were pictograms and what looked like a flat plastic trigger group with no ribs or anything like I've seen on some pictures. The guy called the 4-position a navy trigger group, but my reading tells me that's not what 'navy' really means for MP5s. The 4-position was priced a bit lower which confused me, but the guy said it was because the auto conversion part couldn't be removed from the gun and used elsewhere as it stood, and the 3-postion could. I tried asking for clarification, but that's all he knew. After reading, I think this means the 4-pos would be a registered receiver vs. a registered sear for the 3-pos? Other things I didn't notice or know to look at at the time are if the barrel was 3-lug or threaded or if there was a paddle mag release. What other stuff like this should I know or look for to make a good decision? Outside of the world of HK articles and Wikipedia, are there any known good knowledge dumps someone could link me toward beyond general searching?

<deleted by mod: please do not solicit legal advice. Keep it HK>


One final, somewhat unrelated thought though. I'm sure I'm going to want a suppressor for this thing, and that's something else I know nothing about. Any recommendations? Unfortunately missed the KAC group buy, would have been very interested in that. Is there such thing as an "original" suppressor designed for the MP5? Also on my wish list is a mark 23 with suppressor, would sharing a .45 suppressor with the MP5 be a good idea? Or does that not actually work very well? I've seen people talking about doing something like this.

Thanks!
 

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Wow lots of questions here and rightly so. <non HK legal advice deleted>

A sear married to a host would be substantially less desirable than one that could be moved from host to host. Transferable Sears seem to $30k+ these days though so it's not cheap. If you do end up with the transferable sear hosts are a whole conversation into itself with lots of varying opinions on HKPro.

Good luck - and remember we like photos or it didn't happen...
 

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I'm still learning things myself, but my gut reaction matches yours, that the 4 position one is a registered receiver. If it has a push pin swing down lower that would confirm it. As I understand it any swing down receiver is a machine gun, even if it can only fire semi-auto because it has the ability to accept full auto trigger packs with no modification. So, by the magazine release a factory full auto HK will have a pin that can be removed. To make the ATF happy that part got cut off and a shelf was welded in place that a modified trigger housing would clip to. This link has a huge amount of information about the history of converting HK rifles for civilian use. HK NFA Conversions - Machine Gun Price Guide

<non HK legal advice deleted>

I have a MP5 Clone waiting for an approval to ship to my in state dealer (Form 3). Once it gets here I'll file a Form 4 so I can take it home. I plan on using a Rugged Obsidian 45 with a three lug adapter on it. That would also work on a Mark 23 if you choose to go that route. They've recently released a 9mm end cap for the Obsidian and the three lug adapter should be out soon. There are some great pictures of that set up here. http://www.hkpro.com/forum/hk-nfa-talk/259401-rugged-obsidian-mp5k-3-lug-2.html

I'm pretty sure the KAC suppressor is the "original" suppressor for the MP5.

I know SilencerCo put a video on youtube where shot 45, 40, and 9 through a Osprey 45, 40 and 9 through and Osprey 40 and 9 through an osprey 9. Search for Osprey Sub-calibers. Use that to decide how happy you'd be shooting smaller calibers through a larger can. My personal opinion is to get a 7.62 can and use it for 7.62, 5.56, and 300BLK, and a 45 can for 45, 40, and 9.
 

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...I know SilencerCo put a video on youtube where shot 45, 40, and 9 through a Osprey 45, 40 and 9 through and Osprey 40 and 9 through an osprey 9. Search for Osprey Sub-calibers. Use that to decide how happy you'd be shooting smaller calibers through a larger can. My personal opinion is to get a 7.62 can and use it for 7.62, 5.56, and 300BLK, and a 45 can for 45, 40, and 9.
Great video from SilencerCo, but that Osprey looks horrible on an MP5 IMO. I know. I have one and I wish I would have purchased the Octane. My bad.
 

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I would find out what kind of sear it is #1 if it is one of the 3 Fleming,Qualified, S&H you will be fine if it something else you might want to come back here and post which one there are some less desirable odd duck ones out there. Getting a sear would give you the most flexibility to be able to put in other hosts and have the most upside as far as Reg MG's go I personally think Sears have appreciated the most out of all MG's except for maybe a few.

If you are just wanting a one trick pony and will only want to own one MG then the RR might be the way to go for you if it is priced right...........let us know more info on what you find out.........
 

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I suggested that because it's the only video I know where they make that comparison. I have an Osprey 45. I think it looks great on some pistols. I don't believe I'd like the look on an MP5. But if it was the only suppressor I had for thathe worked for that caliber I'd happily use it. Right now I think the Obsidian is a solid choice for most of your centerfire pistol needs.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
A sear married to a host would be substantially less desirable than one that could be moved from host to host. Transferable Sears seem to $30k+ these days though so it's not cheap. If you do end up with the transferable sear hosts are a whole conversation into itself with lots of varying opinions on HKPro.
I certainly understand that and thus the price difference between the two (about 10%). A sear married to a host.... does that mean the sear is still the registered part and just the paperwork says it has to be with this receiver? If such an arrangement exists, is it somehow possible to do some more filing with the ATF in the future such that the sear CAN be moved? I asked this of the non-owner dude, but he didn't know. I'm leaning about 80% toward the 4-pos, non-separate-able anyway for reasons of price, the fact that I would like to have the burst setting (yeah, yeah, I know, trigger control, but more options are always better), and the fact that I really don't forsee wanting to remove the sear. Of course one never knows what the future might hold. However, if there is some process where the sear and host COULD be legally separated, there would be no reason whatsoever in my mind to go for the more expensive and otherwise slightly less desirable option.

BTW, thanks for mentioning checking for the swing-down pin. I'd figured out to look for that already but forgot as of the post writing. I should probably make a list. I will try to find out the sear type. Learning about conversion sears in general and the fact that the full autos in the wild aren't simply ones made by HK/whatever other gun maker that were bought legally before the ban was quite eye-opening. Thanks for also confirming what I'd pretty much thought as to trusts, I was just worried there might be some kind of community secret or knowledge in this area I haven't been around long enough to discover. Didn't want to go that route and eventually discover there's some weird quirk that makes them worse than just a personal registration in some case. I'm going to start trying to find a local lawyer who is actually focused on firearms. I'm sure any divorce or real estate attorney would be happy to claim they know what they are doing and take my money to set some generic rubber stamp deal up.
 

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I may not be the best one to answer a "married" question since I have a DLO box and not a sear. My understanding is that it depends on what the form 4 says. If the serial number listed on the form 4 corresponds with the serial number of the sear, I think you could divorce the sear by first SBRing the host. If the serial number on the form 4 corresponds with the gun then I think they are married and cannot be divorced.

Others more knowledgable than I will weigh in I am sure.
 

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...What's a DLO box?
A DLO box is a Transferrable, registered trigger PACK, instead of a registered SEAR, or a registered RECEIVER. Those are the three ways you get into a full-auto Transferrable HK.

ETA: just google "DLO box" and go to Images, you'll see plenty.

ETA2: Registered trigger HOUSINGS also exist, though very rare, making it FOUR ways to get into an HK MG.
 

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A DLO box is a Transferrable, registered trigger PACK, instead of a registered SEAR, or a registered RECEIVER. Those are the three ways you get into a full-auto Transferrable HK.
Registered housings as well................
 

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I certainly understand that and thus the price difference between the two (about 10%). A sear married to a host.... does that mean the sear is still the registered part and just the paperwork says it has to be with this receiver? If such an arrangement exists, is it somehow possible to do some more filing with the ATF in the future such that the sear CAN be moved? I asked this of the non-owner dude, but he didn't know. I'm leaning about 80% toward the 4-pos, non-separate-able anyway for reasons of price, the fact that I would like to have the burst setting (yeah, yeah, I know, trigger control, but more options are always better), and the fact that I really don't forsee wanting to remove the sear. Of course one never knows what the future might hold. However, if there is some process where the sear and host COULD be legally separated, there would be no reason whatsoever in my mind to go for the more expensive and otherwise slightly less desirable option.

BTW, thanks for mentioning checking for the swing-down pin. I'd figured out to look for that already but forgot as of the post writing. I should probably make a list. I will try to find out the sear type. Learning about conversion sears in general and the fact that the full autos in the wild aren't simply ones made by HK/whatever other gun maker that were bought legally before the ban was quite eye-opening. Thanks for also confirming what I'd pretty much thought as to trusts, I was just worried there might be some kind of community secret or knowledge in this area I haven't been around long enough to discover. Didn't want to go that route and eventually discover there's some weird quirk that makes them worse than just a personal registration in some case. I'm going to start trying to find a local lawyer who is actually focused on firearms. I'm sure any divorce or real estate attorney would be happy to claim they know what they are doing and take my money to set some generic rubber stamp deal up.
Klaus, if you tend to buy the RR, may I ask what the price on the sear is? I have a friend that is looking for one. thanks. george
 

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PACK = HOUSING

You say tomato, I say... :wink:
I am saying there a few housings that were papered less desirable than a Sear or Trigger Pack but to me more desirable than a RR but you could not put one on a K gun
 

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I am saying there a few housings that were papered less desirable than a Sear or Trigger Pack but to me more desirable than a RR but you could not put one on a K gun
Oh, my bad. I forgot about those. I think I have only ever seen one or two. I'll correct my post above.

We're going to confuse the hell out of the OP.
 

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See you are in VA. if you go with a sear/housing/pack (1 you can use in other firearms), the State does not recognize a sear as the MG when you go to register it with State Police, you will have to register each firearm that it may go into as a MG, just a FYI, no biggie to do fill out form send it to them, they send you the green sheet, think they need "this is a host" check box, but they didn't ask me
 

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A 10% price difference between a registered receiver (if it is) and a movable registered sear/pack/etc would probably mean the RR gun is over priced, or the sear is under priced. Either way, the sear gives the most flexibility, having multiple hosts, etc. A receiver gun means an old gun, sure you could have the barrel replaced, new bolt, but you are stuck with that old receiver. A sear you could get a nice new shiny sp5k or zenith clone, builds, etc, basically a whole new gun ready to rock for years with just the registered part.

You could even add a 4 position, burst trigger group... Assuming it is the sear and not the whole pack I guess.

Shockwave
 

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See you are in VA. if you go with a sear/housing/pack (1 you can use in other firearms), the State does not recognize a sear as the MG when you go to register it with State Police, you will have to register each firearm that it may go into as a MG, just a FYI, no biggie to do fill out form send it to them, they send you the green sheet, think they need "this is a host" check box, but they didn't ask me
I heard that from Mike at TSC this summer when we stopped in. What a royal PITA.
 

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A registered sear or pack married to a host with a shortened barrel made from a rifle can be divorced by registering the host as a SBR.

The sear can then be used in other hosts.

If the host is originally a pistol like an SP89, or an uncut rifle, no SBR registration is needed.

An unregistered sear in a registered receiver gun is forever stuck in that gun.

My list of HK mgs in decreasing order of value:

Registered receiver (RR) swing down pushpin mg

DLO pack

Fleming "H" series or Billistics stamped sear (what I have so I'm partial to the Fleming)

S&H cast sear

Other Sears or registered housing

Clip on RR
 

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Several have posted about the different types of "married" configurations. If the gun with the ambi burst pack is in fact a registered receiver that was converted with an unregistered sear, I would suggest searching "unaltered semi auto receiver converted with an unregistered sear" here on this forum. The subject has been beaten quite vigorously so there is no need to rehash that subject here. There would also be an additional issue. An unaltered semi auto receiver converted with an unregistered sear would be a "collection of parts" to make that machinegun. It is my understanding that the "collection of parts" must retain all the original parts because all the conversion parts made the conversion. Of course a Technology Branch inspection probably wouldn't be able to tell the original trigger from a replacement part from the same era. It is my understanding that ambi burst packs did not exist in the early to mid '80s. That would be an issue to me, especially concerning tens of thousands of dollars to purchase. For others, that would not be an issue. Your gun, your choice. Buyer be ware.

My Fleming sear came to me "married" to a Vollmer converted 94. That is the way I used it for a year and a half. I did file a Form 1 and registered the converted 94 as a SBR because I was interested in other variants. A about a year after that a clone manufacturer had a "Going Out Of Roller Locked Guns" sale in which I bought a Coharie Arms reverse stretch (full size receiver with a "K" front end) for $945.00, a full size Coharie Arms .40 S&W for $945.00, a 9mm Coharie Arms SD including the can for $1,450, and a Coharie Arms CA53 AR (a 53 clone that uses AR mags instead of HK mags) for $1,250. I know I have more than double the cost of my sear in 2007 ($11,500) in hosts. The "K" guns are my favorite K, 9mm, .40 S&W, 10mm AUTO, and 53K AR. Good luck with your search. YMMV.

Scott
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for all your input so far. Can someone check my understanding?

A housing would be the entire swing-down/clip assembly that simply attaches to the receiver and contains the grip, trigger, selector, trigger guard, etc? In the case of a registered housing this would have to be a clip-on style, because a swing-down would need to have the receiver registered, right?

A pack is the box with the trigger and some other bits sticking out, which I assume contains all of the working parts of the trigger and would be inserted in the (otherwise empty?) housing.

A sear would be a specific part that goes inside the pack somewhere to emulate (not the same way a factory MP5 does it) automatic fire.

Anything I misunderstand? At what level are the select-fire modes decided? I.e., is a sear/housing/pack 'stuck' as SEF, 0-1-2-30, etc, or can that be legally modified? Can a sear be dropped into anything, or if I took it out of an SEF would it have to go back in the same type for example?

Thanks for sticking with the annoying noob. I'll say it again, I really, REALLY appreciate the help and have learned way more than I expected already. I'd be satisfied even if everyone got tired of this right now and stopped talking (please don't though :)) This really makes how much I debated and stressed over my first handgun purchase (VP9) seem stupid now...
 
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