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Old January 18, 2013, 11:59 AM   #26
Fishbed77
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PS: IF this is a fake AK, do you think I can trade it with an SKS for a real AK at the gunshow tomorrow???
Huh? There is nothing "fake" about that AK. All those markings you show are those applied at the Izhmash factory in Russia, aside from the importer's markings (RWC). It is made on the same production line as military AK-74/AK-100 series rifles.

In order to be legally imported into the US, it has to come into the country in a "sporter" configuration. These civilian rifles are marketed as the Saiga IZ-132, and they look like this when they come into the U.S.:



They have the same chrome-lined cold-hammer-forged barrels and other critical parts as the military rifles. In other words, they are high-quality guns.

Some shop in the US did the conversion back to a typical AK layout (pistol grip, Warsaw-length stock, moved trigger group forward, added bullet guide to use standard AK mags). About the only major things that separate your rifle from a full-blown modern military production 7.62mm AK-103 (which are of course illegal for US civilians to own) is the lack of a full-auto fire-control group/receiver, the threaded barrel/muzzle device, and the standard AK-100-series forearm and mounting hardware (the shop kept the Saiga forearm and modified it by adding the cooling slots).

I can't tell you what shop did the conversion work, but you've proven in your videos that the work they did is good, since the rifle appears to function reliably and accurately.

In other words, it's about as "real" a new Russian AK as you can legally get. You could make it "look" a little more like an AK-103 by adding a standard AK forearm and muzzle device, but as you said, it's a "working gun," so those mostly cosmetic changes are kind of pointless.

You'd be taking a bath if you tried to trade that Saiga AK plus an SKS for any other AK-pattern rifle, and you'd probably end up with an inferior rifle.

Last edited by Fishbed77; January 19, 2013 at 02:39 AM.
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Old January 18, 2013, 12:19 PM   #27
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You'd be taking a bath if you tried to trade that Saiga AK plus an SKS for any other AK-pattern rifle, and you'd probably end up with an inferior rifle.
Whew ... now I feel better!

it is so silly that you can convert one, but can't buy one as is... Talking suits in DC ... what are we going to do?

OK then, I will just see about zeroing it in at 100, and chronographing it with my Oehler 35P. I would like to see the real muzzle velocity out of that 16" barrel. Once I know what I am dealing with, I have a gift for bullet drop and can extraculate a lot from a little!

Does anyone know the posted velocity for Tula ammo, etc???
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Old January 18, 2013, 03:13 PM   #28
Venom1956
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It's defiantly a legit Russian ak reciever. They all come over as sporter rifles then they are converted to the traditional ak style.

mine is an arsenal. It's about as close to an ak74 as possible.

fish beat me to it and has a wonderfully detailed post! curse replying on a smartphone.
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Old January 18, 2013, 06:35 PM   #29
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I may check the gunshow tomorrow for Tula ammo, so I can sight in and try 300 yard offhand shooting my with girl, my lovely AK...
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Old January 19, 2013, 01:49 AM   #30
Fishbed77
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For comparison, here is a photo of my recently acquired and recently converted 7.62x39mm Saiga. I picked it up around Christmastime as a bone-stock IZ-132, and used a conversion kit from Carolina Shooters Supply to "restore" her to original AK configuration. It took me a whole Saturday afternoon to do the conversion, but it was my first Saiga conversion, and I was very deliberate.


Last edited by Fishbed77; January 19, 2013 at 01:57 AM.
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Old January 19, 2013, 02:44 AM   #31
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Congrats man! Looks like a nice AK.

I just bought my first AK too, a Romanian Draco and have yet to shoot it yet.
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Old January 19, 2013, 10:52 AM   #32
Venom1956
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Does the sporter fore end have any sort of heat shield in it? or is it just poly?
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Old January 20, 2013, 09:07 AM   #33
Fishbed77
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Does the sporter fore end have any sort of heat shield in it? or is it just poly?
No heat shield on the standard Saiga forearm.

That said, I did quite of bit of shooting yesterday and the barrel got very hot, but the forearm never heated up anywhere close to the point of being uncomfortable.
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Old January 20, 2013, 09:13 AM   #34
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cool cool, did you have to file out your magwell? How much 'wobble' do you get in yours?
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Old January 20, 2013, 09:52 AM   #35
WildBill45
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For comparison, here is a photo of my recently acquired and recently converted 7.62x39mm Saiga
This seems like an older one than mine ... the trigger group and pistol grip are further back towards the rear it appears...

Here are two images to compare...

I adjusted the Fish AK to make it easier to see the pistol grip/trigger area.
Attached Images
File Type: jpeg Fish AK.jpeg (164.5 KB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg My AK.jpg (108.3 KB, 7 views)
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Old January 20, 2013, 10:03 AM   #36
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The Saiga in Fishbed77's post #26 is a Saiga as it comes into the country to meet import regs. They are then "converted" back to some level of the original configuration.

Mine was done by Krebs back around 2000. Its one of his AK103K versions, with a 14" barrel. Its been a great gun and I wouldnt hesitate to buy another, although they have climbed a bit in price since I got mine.



The AK74 type "brake" does make a difference in muzzle rise and getting back on target quickly. Besides this one, Ive had them on a couple of other AK's, and you can tell the difference between the guns that have them and the guns that dont when fired side by side.

The only downside to the brakes is, they tend to be a little louder and "flashy" in lower light. My buddy picked up a more recent AK103K from Krebs, which has a flash hider, and its better in those respects, but you do notice a little more muzzle rise when fired.
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Old January 20, 2013, 10:43 AM   #37
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Bill i think its just the Saw grip he has on it compared to yours. Trigger/mag release seems the same.
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Old January 20, 2013, 04:52 PM   #38
Fishbed77
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This seems like an older one than mine ... the trigger group and pistol grip are further back towards the rear it appears...

Quote:
Bill i think its just the Saw grip he has on it compared to yours. Trigger/mag release seems the same.
Venom is correct. The trigger group & mag release are at the exact same location on both my rifle and WildBill45's.

The SAW-style grip (which I am not very fond of and will likely replace) is much larger than the grip on his rifle, and does not "wrap" around the rear of the trigger guard, creating an optical illusion that the trigger may be in a slightly different place. Also, my trigger guard (from the CSS kit), has a slightly different shape, adding to the illusion. The photo of my rifle is also at a slightly different angle.

Note the identical location of the trigger and hammer pins.

Last edited by Fishbed77; January 20, 2013 at 04:57 PM.
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Old January 20, 2013, 06:48 PM   #39
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I'll trade your Saiga for my WASR-10 Romainian AK.

Nah, just kidding, but saiga's are great. I have a Saiga12 converted shotgun and quality is TOP notch. It was converted by Legion (added pistol grip, hinged pic rail receiver cover, AK style front sight, etc.) I would have bought one of their AK rifles, but had to choose one. So I picked the 12ga.

Anyway, it's a great firearm from a good company. Enjoy.
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Old January 20, 2013, 06:55 PM   #40
AK103K
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I'll trade your Saiga for my WASR-10 Romainian AK.
Dont sell your WASR short.

My WASR and SAR shoot just as well as my Saiga. They arent as pretty, but they can easily hold their own.
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Old January 20, 2013, 06:57 PM   #41
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Heck yeah. That's why I said "nah". I love my WASR. It shot straight right out of the box, eats anything, is fun to shoot, and so on.

I love that thing. I got lucky with mine on furniture, too. Mine actually came with some nice wood. I have seen some that are pretty beat up. Plus it only cost about $350. But that was a couple years ago.
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Old January 21, 2013, 12:31 AM   #42
Fishbed77
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cool cool, did you have to file out your magwell? How much 'wobble' do you get in yours?
The magwell of the Saigas do not require filing to accept standard AK mags. The mag catch, however, does.

Using a steel AK mag as a guide, I filed the top of the mag catch until the mag locked up. There is zero wobble with steel AK mags I have (mix of brand-new Polish and lightly-used Hungarian mags).

Last edited by Fishbed77; January 21, 2013 at 01:54 PM.
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