AK pattern rifle?

technetium-99m

Mighty Righty
I'd kinda like an AK pattern rifle, just to have one. Any recommendations from the peanut gallery? A buddy had a pair of Yugo rifles and they seemed to be of decent quality, but I'm open to other options.

Any places to get a decent deal on one?
 

Matt1911

Cyrwus Jr.
My brother has a Romanian and I used to have a Yugo. The Yugo definitely seemed like a better quality rifle and if I were to ever get another one it would be a Yugo.
Back in the good ol days you could find em all over the gunshows for under $300 but I don't think they're less than 5 or 6 hundred now. Damn Obama.
 

Beau

Well-Known Member
+1 for a yugo. if you can afford it and want the best get a Two Rivers Arms "Tabuk" the attention to detail is 2nd to none. by far the best ak ive ever used. welcome to check it out some time. the reason i recommend a yugo is because they are made on a heaver bulged receiver from rpk, folding stock versions have flip up night sights, they can launch rifle grenades. I talked with Steve last week and he said they have fixed stock guns and under folders in stock. Im sure he would be happy to show you some if you stopped by.
 

cajunautoxer

Well-Known Member
technetium-99m said:
I'd kinda like an AK pattern rifle, just to have one. Any recommendations from the peanut gallery? A buddy had a pair of Yugo rifles and they seemed to be of decent quality, but I'm open to other options.

Any places to get a decent deal on one?
What's your spending limit. That would help on recomendations
 

ripnbst

Well-Known Member
Does it have to be in the 7.62 "standard" AK pattern caliber?

I would consider 5.45x39 caliber if you can stomach deviating from the original. $180 per 1000 rounds of ammo is unbeatable in a "tactical" rifle.
 

technetium-99m

Mighty Righty
If its buying quality I have no issues with a 1k plus or minus rifle. Probably will be the bigger caliber, but I'm open to options.
 

cajunautoxer

Well-Known Member
You can't go wrong with Arsenal but you've been warned about their finish. It sucks it won't match and they've been know to bleed while cleaning.

Here's a list of some nice ones. I prefer Vepr AK47 7.62x39mm Rifle Red Wood bc AKs IMO should have wood on them. The Egyptian Maadi is neat with the side crutch folder. I have a kit of one that needs to be built. My next AK willl have the Russian triangle side folder on it. CIA AKs are hit or miss and best bought if you can check one out first

http://www.atlanticfirearms.com/ak-47-74-rifles/ak-47-rifles.html

Your not that far from Denton and this guy from his site does good work. You could get a Saiga and have him do a level 3 conversion. Then you can build it the way you want it.
http://www.jbiarmory.com/Saiga_Services.html
 

english kanigit

Well-Known Member
Hey dude,

What are your specific needs and requirements, in other words what do you need the gun to do specifically? By this I mean approximate ranges of engagement as well as barrier issues if any. Those considerations will be the primary factors in determining which caliber you need of the three commonly offered for the Kalashnikov platform; 5.56x45, 5.45X39 or 7.62x39. Keep in mind that you don't just need the gun but also sufficient ammunition to shoot, magazines to support the system (remember, mags are a consumable item) and ancillary gear to go with it.

Figure out now if you want a folding stock as this can effect the price. If so, I strongly recommend the side-folding variants over the under-folder. The former is tight, strong and solid while the latter is a complete PITA to operate, always wobbles to some extent and (at least to me) feels like getting whacked in the face with a stick of rebar when shooting.

Folders are great for transport, storage or portage in something unobtrusive like a tennis raquet bag.


7.62x39 would be my suggestion for most things. The number of Kalashnikov platforms ( and others for that matter) in this caliber greatly outweigh the number in our country of 5.45. I personally believe that 5.56 AKs are a bad idea for a couple of reasons, the two most notable of which are the straighter case-walls of the cartridge can lead to extraction issues and that there is no multi-country standardization on that caliber such as done by the Warsaw Pact. What this means is 5.56 AK mags from one country may not work with a 5.56 AK from another country. Isreal, Finland, China, Serbia (Yugoslavia) and Poland are all a few that come to mind who have had and used AKs in that caliber but all their stuff is nation specific.

5.45 is still obscenely cheap to shoot right now, more so even than 7.62, but that depends upon the availability of import. The real weakness of that caliber is that the importation of magazines, the lifeblood of any auto loading weapon, has become minimal and at this time no one is domestically producing mags in that caliber.

7.62 stuff is still very available and likely will be for some time even if the prices have gone up. There are also several manufacturers making mags of considerably good quality here domestically (and others of more ill repute as well) which helps keep the cost of imported mags and parts down. Right now case lots of 7.62x39 are going for about $250-300/thousand.

It helps to think of that cartridge as a communist .30-30 as the ballistics between the two cartridges match almost to a T. The ideal engagement envelope for 7.62x39 is anywhere from 0-250 meters. After about 200 meters the projectile starts to drop like a rock and if you graph it the data will appear about like a rainbow. Your AR will be able to shoot much further, flatter (velocity) and more consistently. That being said I can make regular hits on man-sized targets out to 400 with my SBR 8" AK. Also, 7.62 WILL do a car body and whatever juicy, tender bits of meat are within or behind it. :sarcastichand: I don't have the same fuzzy about 5.45 or 5.56.

Buy quality once but don't get stuck on a name. Inspect the rifle thoroughly prior to purchase no matter who it's from. Right now the distribution network is awash with the products manufactured during the crunch earlier this year and late last year. You can bet that QA/QC was probably lowered to make increased production queues. I've got a rant longer than this on Arsenal that I'm tempted to post. :ninja:

Overall AKs are fun, moderately cheap to shoot but they can be equally as much of a money/time sink hole as any other rifle. They used to be 'cheaper' than ARs but that is a very relative term. Like everything else the guns themselves are only getting more expensive.

Photo%20Jul%2027%2C%2019%2034%2054.jpg



If you have any specific questions please let me know.


Ek
 

technetium-99m

Mighty Righty
Primary purpose is really just to have a nice example of the rifle. If you know me you know my policy on magazines (too many cannot be had). I have no real desire for a folding stock, fixed works just fine for me. No real desire for an optic either. The top rifle in your pic is what I'm after. Like we've discussed at matches, I have learned to buy stuff once, and that's the goal here. What I'm missing is what buying once entails with an AK. I've had a few buddies tell me to look for a Mak 90, a few more suggesting Yugo rifles. Typing Yugo AK or Mak 90 into gunbroker is raising more questions than it's answering. Prices also aren't what I'm used to but that may just be par for the course.

Also mags, What am I looking for, Russian, Yugoslavian, etc.
 

cajunautoxer

Well-Known Member
Prices are dropping on AKs but I don't know if they'll go down to pre Dec prices. I've owned a couple of Yugo's. The main thing I didn't like about the fixed stock Yugos are they are heavy. They use the 1.6mm receivers. That and almost all the one's I've owned the barrel were worn out pretty bad. The only Yugo I own is a hard to find 1.0mm slabed sided UF.
The issue with Norinco's are that some need 922r parts to add a pistol grip to them. Those usually have the thumb hole stocks on them. Some have stamped receivers while others are milled.

If I could only have one I'd go with a Saiga. That way you get buy all the parts you want on your rifle and everything is new. I did that with my Saiga 12 years ago. See if you have a local AK Smith that can show you and explain everything to you. Or look at the one I linked from Denton. There's a lot of problems with some of the companies putting AKs together.

As far as mags just stay away from US made ones. Before OBuckweat was appointed I bought a couple hundred of them from Copes. I think they were $5 a piece and flat shipping rate. I couldn't pass on the deal. Recently someone had some on sale for $8 a piece.
 

english kanigit

Well-Known Member
If you really want basic, bare-bones and no bullshit at one point Big Boy's had Romanian WASRs that I believe had been inspected by the boys from Two Rivers Arms as they were in the same shop building. Nothing wrong with them if you inspect them properly from the get-go or buy from somebody who did. Slap on a light, a sling then lock'n'load and lay down the hate as needed.

As a good rule of thumb, anything actually made in a foreign country that once did or still does issue the platform militarily is good to go. Arsenal (Bulgarian) Saiga (Russian), Maadi (Egyptian), Norinco (Chinese), Zastava (Yugoslavian) are all ones that spring immediately to mind. There are many variants, some costing more than others due to collectibility or rarity. WASRs are Romanian and among the cheapest in cost and coincidently quality. The former makes them quite popular but it is possible to get good ones that function great. To be frank, nothing is as cheap as it used to be.

True Zastava-made guns were imported by an outfit called Mitchell arms if my memory serves me correctly (Point worthy of note: most Yugoslavian rifles, Kalashnikovs included, did NOT have a chrome-lined bore. This is also true of most rebuilt kits.). As semi-collectible they will likely be priced according and probably not of much interest to you. Most of the 'yugo' AKs out there are rebuilt kits, along with lots of other variants. Whether a kit that has been rebuilt on a new receiver is troublesome or not depends upon a couple of things, the biggest of which is who built them and whether they did it right. Short of loading the gun and test firing it there are sold only so many things that you can physically check for such as a canted front site base or front trunnion/rear sight base, a bolt that moves freely through its entire range of travel, that the magazine well takes standard military magazines with little or no binding (many actual imports like WASRs are made in a single-stack 'low-capacity' format so that they may legally be imported. Afterwards, the magwell is milled out to the correct size and other parts are changed out with US-made 'compliance' parts.), that the gas piston on the front of the bolt carrier has a bit of play between it and the carrier and the whole assembly is not 'rigid' and that the rifle passes a basic Function Check. As far as milled receivers VS stamped... get the former if you want to pay more money and get a workout while shooting. :wink:

The problem now with most rebuilt kits is approximately three years ago the F Troop (BATF-E) Decreed that Firearm kits imported from overseas could no longer include barrels unless they were rendered unusable. Sad to say but most US-made Kalashnikov barrels are not much worth a damn. This has severely effected the cottage industry around building your own guns and importers biuilding de-milled kits on US-made receivers. This is especially for AKs and FALs.
Regarding Century Arms (CAI), if they built it stay away from it like a plague ridden a hooker. If they imported it the item is probably okay. Regarding a company called 'I. O. Ordnance', see the above advice on arms made by Century and multiply it by three.


There's a hell of a lot of good knowledge laid out in this thread over on the M4Carbine forums: http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=934

Yugoslavian mags are a bit peculiar. The back of the magazine is cut low and the rear of the follower is squared off. This is done so that on the last round the bolt will catch on the follower and lock open instead of closing on an empty chamber and giving you a click. Now, as soon as you remove the magazine the bolt will close and it will still need to be charged upon the insertion of a fresh magazine. I am unaware of whether this works on non-Yugo guns but I don't see why it wouldn't. I'm not particularly interested in them.

Quite literally any steel magazine (in 7.62) made outside the US by a country that does or has issued the platform will be good to go. Chinese ones are great if you can find them because they don't have the obnoxious rib running down the spine (expect to $spend...). The Hungarian 20 round magazines are my favorites and you can see them in the picture above. They are stupidly handy for working in vehicles or carrying on your person. Many sub-standard polymer ones exist as well. The only poly mags I recommend are the 'Circle-10' mags from Bulgaria. Bulgaria also made a slew of other poly mags that were not steel reinforced like the military 'Circle-10' magazines. These are stupidly-expensive now and while probably the best mags made right now I personally don't feel that they're worth the $40-45 a whack folks are charging for them at this time.
I have a half-dozen of the US-Palm mags and while they're light weight and have performed OK so far I don't believe I will be buying any more. The 'steel reinforcement' in them is only on the front and back locking lugs and each piece is separate from the other. The bulgarian military mags have an entire steel cage running front to back, around the sides and up into the feed lips. The US-Palm mags are also extremely bulky in comparison to practically any other mag made and at times can be difficult to load because the springs seem to bind. I can't wait for Magpul to get their shit together and start cranking out the AK Pmags they've announced. I hope the steel reinforced model introduces some competition back into the market and I hope it specifically kicks KVAR in the testicles so they bring the prices on the Bulgarian 'Circle-10' mags back down.


Regarding my rifles, the top one is a SLR-107CR from Arsenal. It's had a bit of work done to it. If you want a no-bull turnthekeyandrunlikeastripeassedape rifle pick up an SGL-21.

Forgive me but I'm terrible with matching names to faces so if you know me then I apologize for not placing you :jester: . If you want to shoot either of my AKs sometime you're welcome to rock out as much (factory) ammo as you care to bring. I should be shooting the pistol match this weekend.

Ek
 

english kanigit

Well-Known Member
If a lot of this seems basic it's not me talking down to you at all. I had to help a cop buddy that had zero experience with AKs a while back and I've been copy/pasting those conversations and reformatting them a bit.

Just wanted to throw that out there.

Ek ;)
 

Brandi

Well-Known Member
If I could afford it I'd go the Two Rivers route, Steve has some amazing stuff.....I wonder how much I can get for a kidney....
 

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