View Full Version : Mak-90 conversion

July 22, 1999, 08:37 PM
Are there some pre-ban Mak-90's that are more difficult to convert to full auto, than other pre-ban Mak-90's?

A dealer has told me that some of the Mak-90's that are preban, but have the thumbhole stock, are not readily convertible. Some of these were purchased by a friend around 1993 or 1994, and I want to know if his are convertible. Is there a difference internally, similar to the AR-15 sear block, between Mak-90's?

Any help you could give would be appreciated.

James K
July 23, 1999, 02:47 PM
The question is academic. Full auto conversions are illegal except in extremely restricted circumstances by or for military or police use. If you are one of the exceptions, you know it and have access to better advice than can be given here.


July 23, 1999, 02:58 PM
OOPS! I posted something about Macs as opposed to Maks. Need to read a little closer. :o :(

[This message has been edited by Prichard (edited July 23, 1999).]

July 23, 1999, 04:52 PM
Jim Keenan,
I am sorry if you somehow interpreted my question as some sort of hint towards a future illegal act on my part. Did I state that I wanted to convert a Mak-90 to full auto? No. I simply asked if there was a feature on some Mak-90's that makes conversion difficult.

I see no need for you to weigh in on the subject if you do not have, first, any information on my question, and second, incorrect information on full auto conversions.

Full auto conversions are not limited to only police or military applications. Respectfully sir, check your facts. Anyone that can afford the high price of a registered sear, or a registered weapon, lives in a state that allows NFA weapons, passes the background check, and pays the $200 tax, can full auto fire away.

I am considering buying A Mak-90 from my friend. He has several and I would like to purchase one that is convertible, as opposed to one that is not. This decision is based on the projected future value of the weapon. I believe that the convertible weapon will appreciate at a greater rate than the non-convertible weapon. If I am going to pay the same price for either, I will take the convertible.

Again I mean no disrespect, but it seems to me you are insinuating that there is some darker purpose to my question. I am disappointed that on the TFL Full Auto section I would encounter this. Would you feel the same way if I had asked which AR-15 has a sear block, the green lable or the blue?

Lets not perpetuate myths or stir up fear in people by making assumptions and then taking it upon ourselves to give unsolicited comments.


James K
July 24, 1999, 01:59 PM
Hi Willy,

Sorry. Have fun.


Rob Pincus
July 24, 1999, 03:51 PM
No, in fact, Jim was spot on, willy.

There is no point in discussing an act which is inherently illegal. Kinda like going to the handgun forum and talking about how easy it is to turn a 1911 into a full-auto vs. a Beretta 92. There is almost no conceivable legal means. In fact, as Jim further pointed out, if you were a Class II/III manufacturer who possibly under limited circumstances could legally alter such a gun, you would (hopefully) have much more info on the process than was available here, or at least you would be well advised to address your question specifically to such persons.
Your scenario of legally purchasing the guts of an Auto AK and putting them into a MAK-90 is far fetched, since 90+% of a Full-Auto AK's price is the FULL AUTOness... IOW, if you canbuy Class III, then buy class III. The situation is a littel different with HKs and ARs, but with AKs I feel safe saying that your scenario if far-fetched at best.
Even if you were talking about an AR.. your question might go like this:

"I want to build an AR from parts, I have been told that certain bolts are incapable of being used with FA parts. My friend has two bolts, I want to be sure that I get the convertable one if I can, as an investment."

That question could be innocent, or it could be a precursor to an illegal act. There is no way for us to know. The TFL FA area has never existed to pass along information that would make illegally converting a weapon easy.

Now, getting back to your question:
At some point in the early 90's I believe there was a shipment of MAKs into this country that were "missed" at the customs check point. Although these guns were SEMI-AUTO ONLY, they featured a reciever which would accept AK full auto parts. These parts are readily available at many gun shows (supposedly as replacements for existing LEGAL FA's). The ATF went about trying to track down these MAKs and return them to China. I believe that they were highly successful in recovering most of these guns. I am not sure of the legal issues surrounding ownership of one of these easily convertable firearms is. To my knowledge, a good many of them were transferred as "normal" MAKs. It seems like there was a serial # list of the weapons in question, though I have never seen it.

IF you did own one of these guns, my impression is that it would be legal, so long as you did not also own the FA drop in parts that could easily make it FA. As we all know, the ATF considers having all the parts the same as having the completed weapon.

If you really are considering "investing" in an easily convertable firearm, I suggest you consider the realities:

Option 1: All FA becomes legal. (yeah right, as if). In this case, your gun isn't worth much more than any other gun, which with a little attention from a drill press and/or dremel tool can also be made FA.

Option 2: All guns become illegal and you try to sell your easily convertable MAK on the underground: Oops, that guy you were trying to talk into buying your illegal gun is actually an undercover ATF agent.. sorry.

Option 3: You buy this gun and then get tempted by small demons living in your head to "just try it out"... you buy the parts, you drop them in, you head out into the back yard--Whackka-whackka-whackka-whackka-- Wooooooooo-woooooo-woooooooooo--"DROP THE WEAPON...STEP AWAY...PUT YOUR HANDS ON YOUR HEAD... etc, etc...."

I advise you to either get a legal Class III or not concern yourself with the definitely 100% illegal area of weapons conversions.


[This message has been edited by Rob (edited July 24, 1999).]

July 24, 1999, 07:20 PM
I thought it was a little harsh myself. Talking ain't against the law yet. Or is it? Seriouly if I just tell someone how to make a SA into a FA, have I broken the law?

James K
July 25, 1999, 02:18 PM
Hi Pritchard,

You could be. Just discussing the issue with a friend is not a violation; the violation would come in if you drew diagrams, laid out templates, etc., when you knew or could reasonably assume that these would be used by your friend to make an auto weapon. Your action could be construed as being an accessory to or part of a conspiracy to commit a felony, that is, the illegal manufacture of a Title II firearm.

For a comparison, if a friend and I discussed bank robbery in general, there would be no crime. But if we drew diagrams, lined up a getaway car, mapped out an escape route, and wrote the note, there would be a conspiracy even if the robbery never took place. If my friend pulled off the robbery, and if I had done those things for my friend, I would be an accessory, even if I did not actually go near the bank.

The issue gets tricky; AFAIK, the outfits peddling templates have not been bothered, and I do not know of any prosecutions where only paper was involved.

Arrest and prosecution usually depends on whether or not the illegal gun is used in a (another) crime, or whether the bank is actually robbed. Then prosecution is certain, and everyone involved is in trouble.


July 25, 1999, 02:58 PM
So there has been no case law?? Any Class 3 folks out there hear of any?

July 25, 1999, 04:43 PM
To all: I will try to help in this matter, I am president of American Class 3 Association and have a little knowledge of the subject. First off, the information to convert and the equipment to convert to full auto is available many places and is at this time not illegal. Should you have the fixtures to convert the MAK90 and the firearm together you are in violation and subject to arrest. There is no auto sear to convert the MAK90, holes must be drilled into the receiver and the proper parts installed to make the conversion. By the way the AK47 type firearm is not the easiest of firearms to convert. Having the information do convert a firearm to full auto fire is not illegal at this time, may be in the future!

If any of you want to convert or manufacture machine guns or suppressors just for research and development you may do so. You first need to contact the ATF and fill out the proper forms and become a class 2 manufacturer. You will be required to pay an annual tax of at least $500 for the license to do this. With this license you can make and sell machine guns to law enforcement or military. These firearms would be referred to as POST SAMPLES, and can not be possesed by a private citizen. You may not begin making firearms until you have received your license. Violation of the NFA act of 1934 WILL get you jail time with Bubba. Your very expensive lawyer can keep your time and fine down to a manageable, 3 years and $20000 fine, plus his fee of course. There are thousands of registered firearms out there for sale so illegal conversion is not necessary.

I have a number of class three firearms and have never had a problem with BATF or any other agency due to my firearms. If one follows the rules and is a law abiding citizen there is no reason one can not have a class three. I am told several times each month that I can not own full auto firearms, and at times by law enforcement. I am also told that ATF will come to your house and harrass you if you ever get a class three firearm. I have had class three for many years now and have never had them or anyone else come to my house about my firearms. Most of the negative statements I get from people is due to ignorance or misinformation, many of these people I convert to my side with a mag full of ammo.

I believe that a firearm is a firearm no matter what or how it shoots. I will defend the right for the duck hunter to have his shotgun as quickly as I will the class three enthusiast to have his machinegun. People, we are all shooters why are we infighting? Let us all band together and fight to keep our God given right to firearms ownership. Scott Traudt, a class three enthusiast in Rhode Island, has filed a law suit to halt the illegal gun buy back programs going on around the country. Let us all get behind him and help, it is for all of our good not just the class three people. Put your money where your mouth is and stop the finger pointing and name calling. Get out and do something for all firearms owners and lets us win one for a change.
Y'all have a nice day!

Rob Pincus
July 25, 1999, 07:12 PM
Thanks very much Mguntony. I appreciate your input on this matter.

I suspected that there was no such thing as a drop-in auto sear for the MAKs/AKs, but I wasn't 100% sure.

In any event, we do not want even the hint of an illegal conspiracy at TFL, hence the questioning of a conversation which might lead to one.

Thanks for understanding.

James K
July 26, 1999, 01:56 PM
I second the point that BATF does not harass those who play by the rules. I was also told about inspections and checks, etc. Not so.

This is not to say that BATF has no "cowboys" who act like trigger happy maniacs. And they do make mistakes. But the worst thing they have done, the Waco tragedy, was not a law enforcement exercise. It was a political exercise to show a "can do" attitude for the new, anti-gun administration. They wanted tables full of "illegal" weapons for the TV cameras. The main purpose was to justify an expansion of BATF, hire more agents, and get promotions all around.


July 26, 1999, 04:33 PM
Hello all,
I was away for the weekend and have not had a chance to read this thread until now. I trully thought that this was an innocent question.

As an administrator of TFL, I can certainly sypathize with your concern over just what content manner is discussed. Personally though, I don't understand the harm in my original question. Actually, you answered it so I guess I shouldn't feel too bad about asking it.

As a complete novice on MAK-90 and AK matters, my question may have been too simple, but to me, it seems the same as asking which AR's can be converted and which can't. I don't plan on converting either the MAK-90 or the AR that I am planning to get, but I am going to get a green lable AR. With the fickleness of the market and the spectulation that much of pricing is built on, I think that it is a better bet in terms of long term appreciation. I don't care about the flash suppressor, or the bayonet mount, or the sear block, but if it will appreciate at a greater rate than a post ban weapon, then great. It was a good investment.

That said, I am still disappointed that it has come to the point where I should feel bad about asking if one MAK-90 is more easily convertible than another. Please note, I never asked how to do a conversion. Why is the automatic assumption (no pun intended) that my question somehow precipitates an illegal act.

Rob, I do have to take exception to one thing that you wrote. I do not know why you would assume that if I owned a weapon that was possible to convert, I would be inexplicable drawn into the backyard to do it. There are thousands of weapons out there and others seem to resist this temptation. I think it is silly to suggest that I, as a law abiding firearm owner, would even entertain the thought of doing that. Please have more faith in your fellow man. :)

I don't know what is going to happen to the firearms market in the next 10 months, let alone the next ten years. I look at the small variations that allow one weapon to be worth more than another, and it makes me sit up and take notice. Who would have thought that the ability to leagally utilize a collapsing or folding stock would be something that would add to the value or a rifle or a shot gun. Not me.

My next step is going to be to call my local BATF office and see if there is a list of serial numbers, like Rob wrote of. If I find out that there is, and one of these guns is on it, and the BATF says its legal for me to own it, I'm buying it. I could be completely wrong, but it seems to me that if there are few of them in the states, it would be worth something a little extra down the line.

Hell, I will probably never sell it (I have a little problem with becoming attached to stuff, or so my significant other says), but if nothing else it would be fun to tell my friends the story about my MAK-90 that wasn't even supposed to be in the country, don't cha know. :)

James K
July 26, 1999, 06:02 PM

I rather hope you are a little more mature and more reasonable than you sound. At the risk of another flame, Rob is right about the few MAK90s with the welded up holes, but wrong that they are legal.

Those are contraband and BATF will confiscate them if they find them. They probably wouldn't prosecute as long as the owner bought the gun in good faith, but they will sieze them without compensation.

Of course, if the holes were drilled out, then the owner clearly attempted manufacture of a Title II firearm, which is a felony, even if no auto parts are in his possession.

In other words, if you buy a MAK90 of that type, you stand at least to lose the gun, which would make it about as good an investment as buying counterfeit money.

Under the circumstances, do you really think asking BATF for help would be a good idea?

Besides, as Rob pointed out, there are no legally registered conversion kits or DIASs for the AK family. Legally, of course, a DIAS does not convert anything to an MG; it is the MG. So for a MAK90, any conversion would be illegal, which is what I said.

You assumed I was stupid or ignorant because I didn't tell you about registered DIASs and parts kits. I didn't mention them because they didn't apply to your question.


Rob Pincus
July 26, 1999, 06:28 PM
oh, boy. I never said that they were legal, only that I did not know what there status was. Not to question you Jim, but if you have a reference to that position on behalf of the ATF, please Email it to me.

That said, I am going to lock this thread down. I think the question has been answered, and the other issues adequately addressed.