Like every red blooded American, ever since I saw my first MP5 on the screen I wanted one. For me it was Die Hard, seeing that closed bolt German goodness in action gave me a raging freedom boner. And that HK slap? It's like the Judo Chop of guns.
A few years ago I finally got my hands on a few. A buddy is an SOT with impeccable taste in everything gun related, and I got to shoot pretty much every MP5 variant- MP5K-PDW, MP5-SD, MP5/10 (to this day the only 10mm I've ever fired), and even the epically awesome (and useless) suitcase. And they all lived up to the hype. Accurate and extremely controllable, they make 9mm feel like a .22. They're so much fun to shoot that you lose track of time and before you know it you're out of ammo and you have a stupid grin on your face for hours.
I had to have one.
Problem was real pre ban HK's cost more than a kidney. And the American clones had shitty reps. So it was pretty much just a pipe dream for years.
Then I started hearing about Turkish made MP5K pistols being imported that were well made and reliable. But I wanted a full size, so I held out and not much longer even the K's were sold out and no longer imported. Then only a few years ago POF from Pakistan started importing full size MP5 pistols. They were a little rough on the outside, but supposedly well built and not too pricey. I wasn't too happy about giving money to the Pakistan Gov (who own POF), but fuck it- it's a goddamn MP5 and I have needs.
Luckily as I was figuring out the logistics, Zenith started importing Turkish MKE guns again, including full size MP5's like John McClain commanded. The reviews were across the board positive, with a much better finish than the POF guns and stellar reliability. Also Zenith had a rep for making things right if there was an issue. So that settled it, I was getting one.
I bought one on Gunbroker from a big distributor on the East Coast, and this is what I got when it showed up:
They also come with a hard case, 3 30 round mags, a removable picatinny rail, military style cleaning kit with extra pins, and a black HK style 3 point sling that might as well be the Kobayashi Maru trying to figure it out.
I test fired the living shit out of it, and it ran 100% through about 300 rounds so I sent my Form 1 off to the ATF. It was my first post 41F, but I still did it on my Trust because that's what I was used to. Turns out 1) Trusts now take almost twice as long as Forms filed Individually and 2) In my haste and excitement I fucked up and forgot to list who my CLEO info and sign the back. So what I thought would be a 7-8 month wait like my previous Form 1 & 4's took 13 fucking months. But it was still worth it, because look at this shit:
There's basically two options: A2 fixed and A3 collapsing.
A2's are cheaper, more comfortable to shoot and lighter. I ended up finding a new HK made one for a good price ($120 IIRC), but POF made versions are pretty common and way cheaper ($48) and are supposedly pretty good. The HK A2 fits super tight and requires a small amount of force to get on, but otherwise I really like it.
But A3's allow it collapse to "fun size" and are sexy as fuck. And are still easy to shoot with. HK made A3's are expensive. Like even for something HK made they're stupid expensive- the F versions (current) go for usually around $400 new and the older models are goiving for even more as they become harder to find (beat up ones cost about $275). Luckily ATI F Stocks from HK parts are extremely well made and were only $130 at the time. Since I bought mine they've gone up to $200. They also offer a 4 position (vs the standard 2 position), but word on the street is those are kind of a pain in the ass. Gunparts / Numrich now has new HK F Stocks for a little over $300, so that's a solid option if you're in the market.
One of the biggest complaints most have of MP5's (aside from the price) is the controls. The mag release and bolt handle are great- but the selector on the older style SEF lowers? Seriously no bueno. Luckily HK a few years ago came out with an Ambidextrous lower than has better selector levers, and on the left side allows for the even better Extended Side Selector Lever (ESSL ). Thing is you can't install the ESSL on the older SEF style lowers, and of course that's what you MKE shows up with. So I ended up getting this:
It's a mix of HK and US made parts which makes it slightly cheaper. Of course when I say "cheaper", it's still $390. I still thought it was worth it as the ergonomics are significantly better, plus it comes with a US made trigger box that adds to the 922r count. But when I tried to install it, the large pin in the rear wouldn't go in. Took me awhile to figure out the issue, but then I discovered the metal front of the trigger housing was pressing against the mag well (the HK is on the left, the MKE is on the right. You can see the scratches on the lower part of the HK).
It looks like the welds on the back of the mag well are slightly took big for the HK housing, so I had a buddy remove a bit of the metal, and now it fits perfect>
I ended up replacing the trigger, sear, and hammer with US made parts and sent it out to Bill Springfield to do a trigger job. The standard trigger isn't bad but a little mushy, the trigger job he did is a huge improvement and well worth the $69 it costs. And the turn around was only a few days.
Another 922r replacement was the forend. It comes with an old school "let's storm the Iranian Embassy" slim forend that isn't very comfy and kinda awkward, so I found an old used Surefire forend. Since pretty much every PD that had an MP5 at any point had these, they're plentiful and fairly inexpensive (for a Surefire / HK part). They also put out 65 blinding lumens. Honestly it works better than it sounds, but I ordered a Malkoff M61 for $40 that ups it to a more reasonable 325 lumens or so.
I also got a US made standard tropical handguard, $20 used on another board. With the A2 stock it's extremely handy and lightweight.
Mags for the MP5 are a mixed bag- there's a lot of different manufacturers out there and most work well, but they're usually very pricey. New HK mags generally run about $65 a pop. Since I started working on this project before the election I decided to stock up, and since then a few other options became available so I ended up with a pretty big cross section of mags from various sources- current HK, old pre ban HK's, MKE, POF, and 2 different generation Korean mags. Luckily, they all work 100%, but I did have to replace the spring of one the older Korean (parked finish) with an OEM HK (which isn't a big deal as the mags were $15 a pop). If you're in the market, the best deal on mags currently are POF, they run about $30.
Here's a shitty cell phone pic of the markings- from left to right current HK, pre ban HK, older Korean, new "4th Gen" Korean, MKE, and POF
One of the interesting HK accessories is the dual mag clamp. It makes reloads much faster, plus it's a great way of having a reload on the weapon. It still balances well too. As a bonus, they fit easily in dual mag M4 pouches too. Of course they're kinda pricey, but if you look around you can find them used in great shape for $50-60.
I found a cheap Uncle Mike's SMG case made for MP5A3's and it works great. Decent padding, carries 6 spare mags, and with stock collapsed fits easily with a mag inserted. It also has a small pouch I use for my ATF paperwork, sight adjustment tool, and spare extractor springs.
I also had bought an Eagle case designed for fixed stock MP5A2's. It fits well, has great padding, carries 3 spare mags, and has a huge pouch for extras.
It shoots like Peter North over a pair of thirsty brunettes. Did you really expect anything less?
Zeroing is a minor PITA because it requires a special tool and there's no "clicks" for windage, so it's not the most precise process. And elevation is something that requires a YouTube video first. Speaking of which, here's the video:
Luckily, after I got it zeroed (a broken clock is right twice a day), it ran like a raped ape on meth and pre workout. I could quickly face shoot a target at 10 yards using double, triple, and even quadruple taps as fast as I could pull the trigger. Which with that trigger job is pretty fucking fast. At 20 yards (the furthest my indoor range is) it shot tiny groups. I ended up dumping 360 or so rounds of 115 and 124 gr Geco / S&B without issue. The only hang up I had was a FTF of the last round in the mag of 50 147gr HST's I shot. I was using a new HK mag, so I don't know what the issue was. Anyone know of a decent JHP that feeds well in MP5's?
I learned a lot over the past 13 months working on this project. I used the HKpro a lot for research, which was mildly problematic as it has a lot more in common with ARFCOM than M4C when it comes to forums. Despite the platform being older, common, and popular there didn't seem to be a lot of info out there on it, but maybe I'm spoiled by the AR platform.
Anyway, I fucking love my Z5RS SBR. It's practical as a shooter since it's 9mm- I can shoot it at every range, plus it's insanely fun. And sweet Jesus it's sexy as all get out. Speaking of which, here's some pics of it with the Die Hard kids Christmas and Coloring Book. Yes, they're real and you can get them on Amazon.
Semi Die Hard clone (F stock be damned)
I'm sure I've left out a lot, so let me know if you have any questions.
Edited. The little icons in the border above the text box is your friend. Dorsai