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Old February 28, 2013, 04:03 PM   #1
Jonny Mack
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AK-47 mags for SKS?

Hey fellas, I'm not an expert by any means, but I recently got caught up in the "buy all the guns you can" craze and purchased an SKS with a detachable 30-rd metal mag. Based on the little I know about the SKS, I'm guessing somebody jerry-rigged this, since original SKS rifles didn't have the detachable mags, right?

The mag looked - to my untrained eyes - to be the same as a regular AK-47 mag. So I ordered a couple (a metal 40-rd and a poly 30-rd) from a warehouse. See images below.

My questions are: The cartridges don't cycle easily - they jam almost every time. Is this correctable by, say, a gunsmith? Also, I can't get the new mags to slot in. Is THAT something a gunsmith could fix?

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Old February 28, 2013, 04:14 PM   #2
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Yeah, that aftermarket crap is generally a bad idea on the SKS if you want reliability. But yes, a smith can fix that. They file the lips on the mag, I believe.

You'd probably be better served by getting an original sks box mag, though.
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Old February 28, 2013, 04:53 PM   #3
Jonny Mack
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Thanks much, U. Will pack 'em up and visit my friendly neighborhood smithy.
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Old February 28, 2013, 05:28 PM   #4
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It's not aftermarket crap my friend, You have a D-model…. Very sought after in some circles…
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Old February 28, 2013, 05:32 PM   #5
halfcocked
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Yes, there were at least 3-models of sks imported that take the ak mags. They were all commercial made for the US market. The early "preban" ones have a folding spike bayonet and military style stock - although hogged out at the mag well. The later ones came with either an ugly thumbhole stock, or a better looking monte carlo style stock, which appears to be the one you bought. Good luck with it!
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Old February 28, 2013, 06:14 PM   #6
TATER
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I will add...
I Can not tell from Photos But, Hollow points will have issues on some rifles. The smallest of feed ramps cut will fix it though..
The Euro magizines should work just fine But, the correct magazines will not have the rib on the back.. (Chinese)
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Old February 28, 2013, 06:22 PM   #7
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I also had jams with the 30 round SKS metal magazines --- for my fake SKS Chinese Paratrooper --- but have no problems with the 15 round SKS metal mags.
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Old February 28, 2013, 06:27 PM   #8
Jonny Mack
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Very encouraging, fellas, thanks much.

The cartridges are "Brown Bear" 123 grain FMJ - Russian made and supposed to be not too bad. So the cycling problem can hopefully be corrected with some strategic filing on the receiver mechanism or the lip (??? as if I know what I'm talking about )
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Old February 28, 2013, 06:32 PM   #9
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If your SKS-D has a stripper clip bolt with matching serial number it is quite collectable in the SKS world.

Very few in this confiuration made it to the US.
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Old March 3, 2013, 09:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Based on the little I know about the SKS, I'm guessing somebody jerry-rigged this, since original SKS rifles didn't have the detachable mags, right?
While people do report trouble with the aftermarket mags for the SKS, you do not have a rigged conversion but rather an SKS-D which was originally made to accept AK mags. These are very desirable, and are one of the highest priced SKS variants, and there not not typically many for sale.

Properly seated mags are typically the key to smooth operation.
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Old March 3, 2013, 09:19 AM   #11
BillM
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Run plain old mil-surp steel 30 rd mags in it. I'm a little partial
to East German, but any of them will work. You might have to do a little
"tuning" on the ledge the mag lip hooks on and the mag catch---the
D (and M) SKS's were sometimes a little crude in those areas.

That said, congrats on your purchase! Not a common rifle. I've
got one of the later ones with the thumbhole stock. Had it for years,
never a problem.
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Old March 3, 2013, 10:13 AM   #12
4V50 Gary
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The Chinese made some SKS with detachable magazines for the American market. They know we like detachable magazines. Comrade Bill put an end to its importation.
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Old March 4, 2013, 03:37 PM   #13
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Is that Bill Ruger or Bill Clinton?

I wouldn't file the feed lip until you try a few different types of ammo and mags. These aren't as loose as AKs, but they aren't all that tight either. Hollowpoints aren't such a great idea IMO.
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Old March 5, 2013, 08:12 PM   #14
Jonny Mack
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Very very encouraging, fellas. Who'da figgered a dummy like me could stumble into a good rifle purchase like this?

I will definitely talk to a gunsmith before trying to do any lip filing. A friend of mine also says a good cleaning might solve the problem. I've never had to clean a rifle before firing it, but hey, it's 'used' and (maybe) 'abused'.

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Old March 6, 2013, 04:58 AM   #15
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Mine will accept metal AK mags, but not as easily as the AK will. But some polymer mags are too wide to fit this SKS version. There is no hope for a US Palm magazine to fit.

IIRC the Bulgarian waffle mags fit but in doing so some plastic gets scraped off the sides.

Mine is the shorter "para" length and it just seems natural to use the 20-round metal (Hungarian?) magazines.

The downside of this weapon is that the bolt will not stay back on an empty mag. Mine does not have the stripper clip guide on the bolt, and until this thread I didn't know there were any of these versions made with the guides.

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Old March 7, 2013, 04:32 PM   #16
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What brand are those mags? Some brands are just no good (ProMag!!!)

For an AK mag (which is what you need), the commie steel mags seem to be the best. I like the US Palm mags too, but not in an SKS D/M. There are lots of places that still have the commie mags in stock and the prices haven't gone up that much, considering the current spike ($18/mag).
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Old March 11, 2013, 12:36 PM   #17
Jonny Mack
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The 30 poly mag says, "IMI Defense" on it. The 40 metal mag has no markings. The warehouse lists it as "AK-47 7.62x39 40 rounds grey steel." Pretty costly, as you can see
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Old March 11, 2013, 12:58 PM   #18
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Re: Cleaning the weapon

Every firearm you buy you should strip and clean, not necessarily because it needs it but to familiarize yourself with the mechanics. You have already illustrated your unfamiliarity with the platform.

In the case of new in box firearms, a cleaning will get out any leftover metal shavings from the milling process which can cause initial failures.
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Old March 11, 2013, 01:06 PM   #19
Jonny Mack
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Weedwacker, thanks, my neighbor said the same thing. I'm hoping he and I can get some time to sit down with it and get familiar with the mechanics, as you suggest.
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