Relative Quality Of Various AKs -Quick Help Sought

Relative Quality Of Various AKs -Quick Help Sought

This is a discussion on Relative Quality Of Various AKs -Quick Help Sought within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Needed: Quick AK47 information. A friend called me this evening from Florida where he's currently vacationing, requesting advice on AK47 clones. I told him I'd ...

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Thread: Relative Quality Of Various AKs -Quick Help Sought

  1. #1
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    Relative Quality Of Various AKs -Quick Help Sought

    Needed: Quick AK47 information.

    A friend called me this evening from Florida where he's currently vacationing, requesting advice on AK47 clones. I told him I'd see what I could find out about which are best quality, which are best buys, and which are junk to avoid. Only thing is, I don't keep up with AK47s that closely.

    He's sold off a passel of rifles and wants an AK47 for general household self-defense use and for keeping handy as he works his ranch. He lives on this ranch. The rifle would see some regular exposure to dusty environments.

    I've heard of sheet metal receivers versus forged steel receivers. I've heard the Century Arms rifles aren't too bueno. A brother-in-law has a Century Arms folder that is way more accurate than it has a right to be though.

    What says the Forum on the subject of AK47s and their clones? Can a consensus be formed over relative quality and can it be done before I call him back tomorrow evening?
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  2. #2
    Member Array BelaOkmyx's Avatar
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    I've owned one. Not a fun rifle to shoot, don't even think about advanced marksmanship with it. The ones with the stamped receivers are not great weapons- generally reliable but inaccurate and clunky. These were the cheap weapons the Soviets used to give to the Romanians and Bulgarians, people who would be dropping those rifles very quickly if they saw a NATO armored division coming toward them.

    This is also not a good weapon for home self-defense use. So many better choices.

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    Well, the very tip top of the line with regard to an AK "clone" would be an imported Magnum Research IMI (Israeli Military Industries) Israeli built GALIL in either 5.56 or .308

    Be ready to take out a 2nd mortgage on the ol' homestead to get one these days though.

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    I have a 16-inch Saiga .308 I converted to the standard AK configuration. It's made at the Izhmash factory, home of the original Kalashnikov. The gun has a chrome-lined barrel and shoots 3 inch groups at 100 yards with the iron sights. It's minute-of-man at 300 yards, a bit iffy beyond. I've hit the gong at 500 yds on three shots the couple of times I've tried it. It eats everything I've fed it from 7.62x51 milsurp to steel -cased MFS and new Win 150 gr soft points. The .308 round is a lot more gun, and a lot more expensive to shoot than the standard Russian round but it delivers incredibly effective hits. Be prepared to pay $800 for one unconverted and then dropping another $200-$300 to convert it. 2 years ago you could have had the same gun for $650 converted. Mags aren't cheap, either. Can't speak for any of the others out there, but I love mine.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BelaOkmyx View Post
    I've owned one. Not a fun rifle to shoot, don't even think about advanced marksmanship with it. The ones with the stamped receivers are not great weapons- generally reliable but inaccurate and clunky. These were the cheap weapons the Soviets used to give to the Romanians and Bulgarians, people who would be dropping those rifles very quickly if they saw a NATO armored division coming toward them.

    This is also not a good weapon for home self-defense use. So many better choices.
    I disagree with you on so many levels it's silly! You come across and completely uneducated with regards to AK's and may want to read up a bit before posting terrible advice.

    1. Not fun to shoot? Are you kidding me? They are a blast to shoot.
    2. Though I would not say advanced marksmanship I can hit some very nice little groupings about to about 150-200 yards. For the 100 yards in that I would intend to use it for it pretty damn accurate. My Arsenal is about 1.5 to 2 inches at 100 yards all day long.
    3. Stamped receivers are great. I would rather have a stamped receiver over a milled one due to the fact that you lose quite a bit of weight and don't lose much if any accuracy or reliability. I have never had a decent stamped receiver fail me ever!
    4. You would be wanting to drop your rifle for a nato rifle too. For god sakes some of these have been in service for 30-40 years. It's not uncommon at all to see AK's with no bluing left because they have been used and abused for so long.
    5. For a ranch an AK would make a fantastic Home Defense rifle, how would it not? This is a bit of personal preference here but it's almost laughable.


    Back to the original topic here.

    Tell your buddy to look for a MAK-90, Saiga (922R converted or not), Arsenal, Lancaster, Waffen Werks. These would serve very well.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Array yz9890's Avatar
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    Relative Quality Of Various AKs -Quick Help Sought

    my Arsenal SGL21 is the most fun to shoot rifle that I own. it's not as accurate as my AR but it's plenty accurate for a short to intermediate range battle type rifle.

  7. #7
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    I agree with the post one hundred percent. I might ad that Century International Arms AK sporters, such as the WASR-10 are serviceable as long as they do not have canted sights, which are easy enough to detect with a quick inspection. Chinese AK sporters from NORINCO and POLYTECH are top quality firearms, although they have not been imported since 1994 and your friend may with to consider AK's in 5,45 X 39 which have a lower recoil impulse and are generally more accurate and easier to shoot than their 7,62 X 39 cousins.
    Quote Originally Posted by C hawk Glock View Post
    I disagree with you on so many levels it's silly! You come across and completely uneducated with regards to AK's and may want to read up a bit before posting terrible advice.

    1. Not fun to shoot? Are you kidding me? They are a blast to shoot.
    2. Though I would not say advanced marksmanship I can hit some very nice little groupings about to about 150-200 yards. For the 100 yards in that I would intend to use it for it pretty damn accurate. My Arsenal is about 1.5 to 2 inches at 100 yards all day long.
    3. Stamped receivers are great. I would rather have a stamped receiver over a milled one due to the fact that you lose quite a bit of weight and don't lose much if any accuracy or reliability. I have never had a decent stamped receiver fail me ever!
    4. You would be wanting to drop your rifle for a nato rifle too. For god sakes some of these have been in service for 30-40 years. It's not uncommon at all to see AK's with no bluing left because they have been used and abused for so long.
    5. For a ranch an AK would make a fantastic Home Defense rifle, how would it not? This is a bit of personal preference here but it's almost laughable.


    Back to the original topic here.

    Tell your buddy to look for a MAK-90, Saiga (922R converted or not), Arsenal, Lancaster, Waffen Werks. These would serve very well.

  8. #8
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    Everybody needs an AK. Amazing reliability. You can field strip one in your sleep. They gobble up sand and dirt. You can rinse one in a muddy river to clean it. And they ARE a blast to shoot. Accuracy is good enough for their intended purpose.
    Just my personal opinion on that.
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    I've had AK's in many formats.love em to death .the century's that are readily available work just fine.they make some nice dress up kits which don't cost much.cheaper ammo goes in and through with no issue.very reliable and fun to shoot

  10. #10
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    I have a Romanian WASR. It was cheap and hasn't failed me yet. It isn't terribly accurate, but I'm sure it would be more accurate if I either upgraded the sights or practiced with the ones it has like a lot more. If he finds one that isn't canted it should serve him just fine for a basic defensive rifle, as long as he has determined that his location doesn't make the 7.62X39 cartridge an unnecessary risk. There are better AKs out there, but I view the whole point of an AK as being something that is cheap, ugly, and reliable. The Romanian fits the bill nicely on all counts. Hope your friend finds something he likes.

  11. #11
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    I have owned 2 WASR's and both were more accurate than many would have you believe. Crappy surplus ammo and barrels in the parts kits are the major reasons the AK has a bad accuracy rap. Even Wolf or Tula shouls shoot 3" at 100 yds in a good gun.

    With that said, I would opt for a higher grade if possible.

    Now is not a good time to get into any semi-auto weapon. Assuming he finds a good rifle, magazines and ammo are problematic at this time.

    If he is set on this caliber, a short-barreled SKS ('Paratrooper' or 'Cowboy Carbin'e model) may be a better way to go for a ranch rifle.
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