Saiga or SKS


PDA






Roadwild17
December 4, 2006, 03:38 PM
I'm looking to get my first auto rifle and I'm on a tight budget. I'm planing on getting a coupled AR lowers and building one a few, but the time being, I need something to serve as a general purpose rifle. I'm interested in a sks-d for the factory made detachable mags (no dremel work here :rolleyes: ). I was just wondering if a saiga would be a better choice. I'm not particularly interested in getting a 5.56 because of my future AR's, I can buy for them later.

I didn't make it a poll because I want to try and cut down on people just voting and not saying anything, I would like to hear your reason for choosing one over the other.

If you enjoyed reading about "Saiga or SKS" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
rbernie
December 4, 2006, 04:10 PM
Saiga - it's as inexpensive as a SKS but with the advantages of an AK.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=238419

Here's my new Saiga:

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=48771&d=1165108340

quatin
December 4, 2006, 04:17 PM
:scrutiny: Where did you get your saiga to have that thumbhole stock put on? Or did it come with that?

MD_Willington
December 4, 2006, 04:26 PM
Some come with that stock from the factory, there are several different models.

carlrodd
December 4, 2006, 04:27 PM
i see no advantage in the detachable ten round magazines of a saiga over the internal 10 round of the sks, especially considering the frustration and no gaurantee for reliability in modifying the saiga to accept ak mags. assuming one would keep the 10 round detachables, i see a great advantage in stripper clips in the sks internal magazine....no contest actually. countless stripper clips can be bought for next to nothing....saiga mags are what.....$20 a pop?

not to mention crappy saiga stocks in comparison to a nice block of wood.

Correia
December 4, 2006, 04:41 PM
especially considering the frustration and no gaurantee for reliability in modifying the saiga to accept ak mags.

If you know how you can do it in about 20 minutes. It is actually really easy. I suggest getting somebody who knows how to do it help you with your first one.

rbernie
December 4, 2006, 04:44 PM
I've got about thirty or forty 30rd AK mags of various eastern european lineage and a passel of Romanian 20rd mags, and they all work without a hitch with my 7.62x39 'converted' Saiga. Most of those mags cost me around $10/each.

I bought my 7.62x39 Saiga already fixed up, but last I checked the parts needed to convert the Saiga to use standard AK mags cost about $12 from the lads on the Saiga forum. (By the way - the pic up above is my new 223 Saiga that is not yet converted, since I just got it yesterday...)

grizz
December 4, 2006, 10:09 PM
I went with a Saiga .223. I love this gun! The thing is pretty darn accurate, 100% reliable, and a ton of fun to shoot.

rbernie, what make of optics mount is that on your Saiga? Does it line up perfectly over center of the bore?

rangerruck
December 4, 2006, 10:27 PM
i'd go Saiga. can use regular mags, with a few mods, is handier and lighter, is more accurate, and once get them they way you really like, get another and keep it stock, or max it all out with aftermarket goodies.

rbernie
December 4, 2006, 11:02 PM
rbernie, what make of optics mount is that on your Saiga? Does it line up perfectly over center of the bore?It's a BP02 (http://tantal.kalashnikov.guns.ru/bstmounts.html) low-rise quick release Weaver base bought from Tantal (tantal.kalashnikov.guns.ru). It centers and lines up perfectly on the 223 Saiga. I have heard that the dimensions on the rails are not closely-held, so it's not uncommon to have to do a bit of light fitting (filing, basically) of the rail to get the mount to slide onto the rail.

Where did you get your saiga to have that thumbhole stock put on? Or did it come with that?It came with that stock; it's really nice, and one of the primary selling points for the rifle (IMO). Certainly, I'm not compelled to convert the rifle back to an AK pistol grip/trigger group/buttstock quite as urgently as I might otherwise have felt.

quatin
December 5, 2006, 11:15 AM
That's kinda cool, I was always hesitant on spending the money for tools just to put a pistol grip on a rifle. Is there a turn off valve for the gas piston like there is on the sks?

dfaugh
December 5, 2006, 11:24 AM
Well, I have and SKS-M (similar to the SKS-D) and I wouldn't part with it. (In fact I'm looking for 1 or 2 more, but I can't find them locally---prefer to see them in person before I buy)

More accurate than an AK, customizable (watch your parts count), utterly reliable with ANY AK mags (except drums which require modifying the stock) I've ever tried, and virtually indestructable (5000+ rounds w/o dissasembly).

And, because they're kinda rare, they'll hold their value, and give you something a bit "different" to play with.

rbernie
December 5, 2006, 11:50 AM
Is there a turn off valve for the gas piston like there is on the sks?AKs do not have a gas valve, nor do Norinco or Russian SKSs. Only the Yugo SKS has a gas valve, because it has a grenade launcher muzzle adornment that the others don't.

Anteater1717
December 5, 2006, 09:19 PM
whats saigias website and is there any version for ca

fal 4 me
December 5, 2006, 09:27 PM
whats saigias website

Russian-American Armory http://www.raacfirearms.com/

is there any version for ca

I don't think anything based on the AK action is legal in Ca. I could be wrong though.

RockyMtnTactical
December 5, 2006, 11:53 PM
I think a Saiga in 5.56 would be perfect because you are buying AR-15 lowers. That way you don't have to buy/stock different ammo.

That's just my opinion.

rbernie
December 6, 2006, 12:20 AM
I think a Saiga in 5.56 would be perfect because you are buying AR-15 lowers. That way you don't have to buy/stock different ammo.
As important - you won't be dependant upon cheap ComBloc ammo imports to feed it.

roscoe
December 6, 2006, 01:56 AM
I love my .223 Saiga and think that it is going to become the uber-cool rifle once I throw some money at it, but it has one deep flaw - the AK sights. You can put a TechSight on a SKS for $60, which gives you the AR-style peep sight, and it will improve the rifle's effective accuracy 100%. It makes a huge difference, and is one reason the SKS might be a better rifle for most uses, including hunting and plinking/shooting at longer distances.

To put decent sights on an AK you need to put a reflex-style sight onfor several hundred dollars (and I still worry about robustness), or pay Tony Rumore $200 to put on a G3 sight set.

grizz
December 6, 2006, 02:23 AM
True, Saiga sights are pretty bad. I'm going to buy a Kobra red dot to fix that problem. :D

sgphoto
December 6, 2006, 09:26 AM
Try this inexpensive aperture sight for your AK, Saigas. Works great, easy to install.

http://www.brownells.com/aspx/NS/store/ProductDetail.aspx?p=16333&title=AK%2fSKS+ADJUSTABLE+REAR+SIGHTS

Steve

rbernie
December 6, 2006, 11:09 AM
To put decent sights on an AK you need to put a reflex-style sight onfor several hundred dollars (and I still worry about robustness),The Tantal low Weaver-style mount was $50 and the ProPoint was $30. I can live with that.

On the other hand, I can't put an optic on an SKS nearly as easily.

sgphoto
December 6, 2006, 04:59 PM
http://scoutscopes.com/gallery.html

Take a look at these ScoutScope mounts. I have them on both Saigas and SKSs with good results. Best solution I've found for mounting optics on these weapons. I use an Ultradot on both.

Does it look tactical or military, or mall-ninja cool?

No, but it does work and offers a repeatable return to zero. That's my first criteria and it does that well.

Steve

rockstar.esq
December 6, 2006, 06:16 PM
So just so's I understand properly, Rbernie's Saiga is a .223 and it's capable of being modified to accept AK mags?

LaEscopeta
December 6, 2006, 06:16 PM
Take a look at these ScoutScope mounts.OK, I looked. They look sturdy, easy to attach, made in the USA, and have an emergency iron sight built in. I like.

How high above the barrel is the line of sight with a typical scope or red dot?

roscoe
December 6, 2006, 07:40 PM
If you are a true afficianado of iron sights, none of those solutions give you the long sight radius or the true peep sight optical effect (close to your eye) that the TechSight does. That scout scope base looks pretty cool if you need to have optics, however.

sgphoto
December 6, 2006, 07:48 PM
On the SKS and Saigas, there's very little change in cheek weld between the iron sight and optics on the Scoutscope mount - just a little less firm and raising the eyes a little. Easily done without sacrificing either position or typical sight hold.

On some sidemounts I've seen on AK, the scopes are higher and not always along the bore center. I'm sure there are excellent side mounts for AKs, but the ScoutScope made the most sense for me.

Pros: Almost normal cheek weld. Well-made, good installation instructions. Keeps optics at bore center-line and low, can be removed and returned via rail system for cleaning rifle while retaining optics POA and POI as before removal. A big plus.

Cons:Installation must be done according to instructions, no freeballing. After running through a few dry runs a of mounting and removing both the mount and the rail, reassemble this time using blue Locktite and securing the mounting screws to the rifle. If done right, it does leave four marks on the rifle, but these are very small and easily touched up, though is really not a major concern if it's working gun.

I think installation is very easy as I have converted a 5 inch metal vise into a smithing vise to hold barrels, receivers, frames, while working on guns. If you don't have a vise, it's still doable, just improvise. Therefore, while installation is easy, the rifle must be held steady and solidly.

With the SKS, be sure and find an optic that will work for you where it has to go -- that being no closer than the front end of the open action. The SKS will eject upwards and hit your optic otherwise. There are shell deflectors, but I don't use them.

All-in-all a good mount that solves many situations, for a reasonable amount of money.

Steve

TimboKhan
December 6, 2006, 07:56 PM
I have both, and I think both are peachy, but if I had to choose, I think I would go with the SKS. First, the detachable magazine thing isn't that big of a deal to me. I can ram a stripper clip down the gun just about as fast as I can lock an AK mag in (mine is modified to take AK mags). Secondly, I like the safety better on the SKS, but thats just my personal opinion. Third, and this is also just a personal opinion, I like the openness of the SKS.

If you like the Saiga, I feel certain you will be pleased. I have some issues with how my mags load up, but they function perfectly, so I guess thats the key. Other than that, it really is a pretty nice rifle, and one I would recommend should someone want one. It's just that if I HAD to choose, I would go SKS.

rbernie
December 6, 2006, 09:21 PM
So just so's I understand properly, Rbernie's Saiga is a .223 and it's capable of being modified to accept AK mags?
Yes. Surefire also makes hi-cap magazines if you don't want to convert your rifle, but be warned that the 30rd 223 mags are a cool $50/each (as opposed to $25/each for the 223 Romy mags if you do the conversion)

The Dragunov-style Saiga stock also features a rotatable cheek piece, so you can get consistent weld regardless of whether you're using irons or an optic. That's handy.

MD_Willington
December 6, 2006, 09:45 PM
...but does using the sure fire put the user in non-compliance with 922r... there's the rub, one source has the BATFE saying it's cool as long as you don't modify the firearm, others say it is non compliant and you have to fully convert the rifle.

I like the Saiga in stock configuration, especially with a wood furniture set, so for me stock configuration is A-okay...

It would not be cool to get stung for having only slapped a high cap mag in the rifle...

Frog48
December 7, 2006, 12:36 AM
For the money, you cant beat an SKS. Lots of bang for the buck... Just this past monday I picked up my unissued Yugo M59/66 SKS for $139.

Also, since both the SKS and Saiga are relatively cheap, you might consider getting both. :D

If you enjoyed reading about "Saiga or SKS" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!