I just received my Sten parts kit (complete with short barrel) and I'm looking at what my next steps should be.
I've asked a few questions on Calguns (California specific gun enthusiast site) but haven't received that many answers). I'm hoping you folks can help me out here.
Please keep in mind that first preference is to build a STEN carbine vs. a pistol, I cannot go SBR in this state, and I must worry about falling in as an assault weapon.
My second preference is to keep this build as cheap as possible while keeping the fab work to a minimum. This means I plan to buy an 80% receiver, a semi-auto kit, and dremel/mill + weld + rivet from there.
Right now, all I have in my possession is a STEN MKIII parts kit from thedealershowroom.com.
Q1: What are the differences between the SemiAutosten.com kit and the kit available from Indianapolis Ordinance?
Indianapolis Ordnance - STEN MK3
- It looks like the I/O kit requires you to buy a seperate receiver: $250 + $100 or $150 (vented or not).
- "The ejection and sear ports are scribed directly on the steel': Does this mean that there are grooves on the metal tube (and not just paper outlines glued to the tube to follow) when it comes to cutting the ports? If so, this would be my first preference.
- Is I/O the source for the "microtabbed receiver" that is referenced by Zendick in the 5th post of this thread? (I already tried to PM this guy with no response)
Surplusrifleforum.com • View topic - Sten ?
Q: I have read that the SemiAutoSten kits used to have FTF/FTE problems but they have since been resolved by the new owner with new hammers & springs. Someone else verified this for me on Calguns.net. Do the Indianapolis Ordinance kits have the same feeding issues? I'm looking for original experience here.
Prexis: Semi-Auto Conversion
[Prexis is a reseller of the SAS3 kit]
Q: Are there any other semi auto build kits I should consider?
- Much as though I would like to build my own, I don't have the expertise to go all out here and mill my own bolt.
- I also have seen the plans to use an AR trigger assembly, hammer, and firing pin setup. These too would require bolt mods and I'm not sure I'm up to it.
I realize that there are two options for my barrel if I want to build a carbine.
* Buy a 16" carbine barrel OR
* weld/silver solder a tube to around the shorty barrel much like how 12.5" shorty AR barrels are extended to the legal length with USGI muzzle brakes.
Q: If I go with the 16" Indianapolis Ordinance Barrel ($99 vs $120 @ Prexis.com), will I have problems fitting this barrel in the trunions supplied with the Semi Auto Sten kit?
- Or should I just go with the IO barrel for the IO kit and the Prexis/SAS barrel for the SAS3 kit.
Q: This is more of a California Specific Question: would the barrel extension over the short original barrel qualify as "flash hider" or does the flash just keep travelling down the extension and out the tube?
- The reason I ask is because California has the stupid SB23 law.
- Even though I don't have a pistol grip (I would weld something to close up the hole on the metal triangle attached to the stock so there's no confusion), having a "flash hider" on a semiautomatic w/ a detachable
- Even if it DOES qualify as a flash hider, there are ways around this. I could simply make my STEN a "non-detachable" magazine by building some kind of "bullet button" for the magazine release. This would be similar to the workarounds for AR-15s that you see in CA nowadays.
Senate Bill 23 Assault Weapon Characteristics - Bureau of Firearms - California Dept. of Justice - Office of the Attorney General
Bullet Button Mag-LockKit for AR15  - $25.00 : Ten Percent Firearms, The Firearms Experts
My last question involves inadvertant constructive possession of a NFA weapon.
Q: Before I take possesion of any receiver or receiver kit, I should weld the extension on my factory barrel or dispose of it, right? I'm worried about inadvertantly having all the bits for an SBR.
- Or, is the timing that I cannot have a COMPLETED receiver and short barrel in my possesion at the same time.
Q: Before I take possesion of any receiver or receiver kit, I should dispose of the original factory bolt?
- My concern is that I don't want to inadvertantly create a situation where I have both an evil bolt and a compatible receiver. Since both build kits aren't compatible with the original bolt, I should be OK, right?
For the sake of completeness, I understand I can build a "STEN pistol" as well.
I can use the original barrel but will still need a semi auto bolt and receiver.
I will also need to make sure that the stock is no longer attachable and for California, I will need to make a "bullet button" for the magazine release.
Thanks in advance for all of your help. I'm really looking forward to this challenge even though i recognize a HiPoint carbine would be much, much cheaper