Saiga and AK Buying Questions


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Dynasty
December 24, 2007, 10:01 AM
I just have some questions regarding the Saiga and AK rifles before I buy. They are just general questions, but I hope those with experience will chime in and lead me to best decision. I'm having trouble deciding which one to get as my first rifle. I want something that will last me a long time without problems.

Which would you rather have?
Which is more fun to plink with?
Which is easier to maintain?
Which is cheaper to shoot?
Which has a bigger after market?
Which is more accurate up to 150 yards?
Which would you feel safer with (self defense)?
Which, out of the two, would be your choice as a first rifle and why?

Thanks for taking time out of your holidays and helping me out!

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W.E.G.
December 24, 2007, 10:21 AM
Which would you rather have?
Which is more fun to plink with?
Which is easier to maintain?
Which is cheaper to shoot?
Which has a bigger after market?
Which is more accurate up to 150 yards?
Which would you feel safer with (self defense)?
Which, out of the two, would be your choice as a first rifle and why?


I'd rather have the AK because its a classic design.
The Saiga is a nice enough design, but the fact that it exists as a compromise for the gun-haters offends me.

The Saiga and the AK are equally simple to maintain.

The Saiga and the AK shoot the same ammo. Cost depends on you.

AK's hold their (already low) value well. No reason to think the Saiga would be any different.

Accuracy of this species varies from one rifle to the next. These are el-cheapo mass-produced guns. Most are OK. A few are a wreck. These are basically the same gun, but with cosmetic differences. There is no basis for suggesting that one configuration is more accurate than the other.

Self defense with a rifle? By the time you are shooting (back) at somebody with a rifle, you are in a gunfight. Gunfights are inherently highly unsafe. Your safety in a gunfight depends on your ability to avoid it. Which has nothing to do with what hardware you have in a bag under your bed. You should be asking which rifle is more RELIABLE. For my answer to that question, see the preceding paragraph regarding accuracy. The same principles apply.

My first choice would be the AK for the reason stated in the first paragraph of this reply.

Deer Hunter
December 24, 2007, 10:28 AM
I'd like to chime in and say that a Saiga's accuracy is far better than your average run-of-the-mill WASR. The Saigas a much better gun than your lower-level AK varieties.

nalioth
December 24, 2007, 10:40 AM
Which would you rather have? The Saiga
Which is more fun to plink with? Fun is subjective. You'll have to answer your own question there.
Which is easier to maintain? They are the same design.
Which is cheaper to shoot? They use the same ammunition
Which has a bigger after market? Both have equal aftermarket (after you convert the Saiga)
Which is more accurate up to 150 yards? Depends on what models you buy. Some AKs are quite accurate (for an AK) out of the box, while others are lacking.
Which would you feel safer with (self defense)? Either
Which, out of the two, would be your choice as a first rifle and why? The Saiga. It's a very inexpensive rifle, and converting it to full AK appearance puts you into an AK without spending lots of money

I don't think your question is very good, as you are asking about the same exact rifle, just with different appearances.

The Saiga is just an AK with a sporting stock on it.

baz
December 24, 2007, 10:49 AM
The Saiga is just an AK with a sporting stock on it.Except that the Saiga is equally available in .223 or .308 (for a bit more).

nalioth
December 24, 2007, 11:14 AM
Except that the Saiga is equally available in .223 or .308 (for a bit more).

You can get AK variants in .223 and .308

Sar3/Wasr3, Arsenal Sa M5, and current Arsenal offerings (slr106/107) are available in .223

IO and Century have imported PSL type rifles in .308 (the PSL is basically a beefed up Kalashnikov design)

rbernie
December 24, 2007, 11:50 AM
I have two Romanian AKMs, but seven Saigas. The Saiga (converted back to AKM format) is simply a better AKM than any SAR/WASR.

The real question would seem to be which is better between an UNCONVERTED Saiga and a SAR/WASR. In that case, I still pick the Saiga since it represents a better overall value (bang for the buck).

W.E.G.
December 24, 2007, 12:38 PM
The Saiga (converted back to AKM format) is simply a better AKM than any SAR/WASR.


Can you support this conclusion with fact in the context of the SAR-1?

357fan
December 24, 2007, 12:55 PM
Well, I don't know about the SAR-1, but I can compare my Saiga 223 to my Wasr-10. They both go bang every time I pull the trigger, but the Wasr prints groups that are 2 or 3 times the size of the Saiga's groups. I love them both, but the Saiga is far more accurate.

Also, my Wasr has lots of slop in it, while my Saiga is much tighter. The mag well (if you can call it that) on the Wasr is far too wide, thanks to the dremel-happy folks at Century, the bolt carrier is sloppy on the rails, there are tooling marks everywhere inside, and the furniture it came with looks like unfinished scrap wood.

Compare that to the Saiga, where the mags fit perfectly, the bolt carrier has enough room to ensure reliability but no real slop, there are still tooling marks, but not nearly as many. Sure the furniture is plastic, but once you convert it, you can pick some really nice stuff and make it into whatever you want.

In the end, get them both, but if you can't get the Saiga and take the time to do the conversion. You'll be very happy.

MD_Willington
December 24, 2007, 05:56 PM
Don't forget the 30.06 Saiga... though it is a tad bit harder to make it look like a plain ol Vanilla AKM

Deer Hunter
December 24, 2007, 06:03 PM
Or the 12, 20, and .410 gauge shotgun versions.

rbernie
December 24, 2007, 06:40 PM
Can you support this conclusion with fact in the context of the SAR-1?Within the context of my relatively small sample of each, the Saiga exhibits better accuracy, better fit-n-finish, and better worksmanship. I also can get the Saiga in either a 16" or a 20" variant.

About the only thing that the SAR-1 does better is (presuming it's a no-ban version) provide mounting points for a bayonet. Well, that and not having that stupid chamber ring that the Russians require of the Saigas.

I like my SARs (and I've had more than a few, still have a SAR-2), but the Saiga is simply a better beast.

W.E.G.
December 24, 2007, 06:56 PM
IIRC, the SAR series was only imported in 2000, and 2001 (maybe some in 2002 - but I've never seen one).

Unless you mean you modified your SAR, where did you get a "no-ban version."

I will concede that the Century triggers that came with the SAR rifles were the worst. Simply horrible trigger slap. I replaced mine as soon as the TAPCO G2 triggers became available.

FMJMIKE
December 24, 2007, 06:56 PM
I love my Saiga .223/5.56 rifle........Of course I altered it a little.:D
http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e350/mbmphoto/Saiga20galil.jpg

rbernie
December 24, 2007, 08:40 PM
IIRC, the SAR series was only imported in 2000, and 2001 (maybe some in 2002 - but I've never seen one).
IIRC, Century had a bunch build up right after the AWB sunsetted in 2004. Either that, or a whole bunch of folk all went out and had pre-ban FSBs put on their older SARs along with G2 trigger groups. I had several that I purchased in early 2006 configured with G2 triggers and bayo lugs/muzzle brakes; since they were identically configured, I presumed that CAI did the work.

It may be that the SAR doesn't even have that over the Saiga, altho the ability to retrofit a standard AK FSB certainly exists for the SAR ande I'm not sure that the same holds true for the Saiga.

nalioth
December 24, 2007, 08:58 PM
It may be that the SAR doesn't even have that over the Saiga, altho the ability to retrofit a standard AK FSB certainly exists for the SAR ande I'm not sure that the same holds true for the Saiga. You can easily replace the neutered FSB on the Saiga with a military FSB.

rangerruck
December 24, 2007, 09:06 PM
all these things are the same, except two things, I kept my saiga stock, so it looks not so evil. If I ever get pulled over, this may not freak out a cop as bad!!!! Accuracy wise, you will see time and time again, that unless you go with a custom build or a very high end ak type, the accuracy of the saiga is double tough. I have had 3, sold them all, then got two more back about 2 years later. I still haven't bothered to scope them, and their accuracy was no
diff, as compared to the first ones I got.
i recommend Saiga.

Dynasty
December 25, 2007, 06:35 PM
Thanks for the responses so far. I am still having trouble deciding which to go with. I like the AK, well because it's and AK and everyone knows what it is. However, I want the rifle that is best for the money. Maybe someone who owns both or who has shot both can tell me what's better in terms of quality of parts, feel in terms of solid or cheap, and accuracy. Is the accuracy really a big difference?

rbernie
December 25, 2007, 07:30 PM
Maybe someone who owns both or who has shot both can tell me what's better in terms of quality of parts, feel in terms of solid or cheap, and accuracy. We have.
I have two Romanian AKMs, but seven Saigas. The Saiga (converted back to AKM format) is simply a better AKM than any SAR/WASR.
Within the context of my relatively small sample of each, the Saiga exhibits better accuracy, better fit-n-finish, and better worksmanship. I also can get the Saiga in either a 16" or a 20" variant.


Also, my Wasr has lots of slop in it, while my Saiga is much tighter. The mag well (if you can call it that) on the Wasr is far too wide, thanks to the dremel-happy folks at Century, the bolt carrier is sloppy on the rails, there are tooling marks everywhere inside, and the furniture it came with looks like unfinished scrap wood.

Compare that to the Saiga, where the mags fit perfectly, the bolt carrier has enough room to ensure reliability but no real slop, there are still tooling marks, but not nearly as many. Sure the furniture is plastic, but once you convert it, you can pick some really nice stuff and make it into whatever you want.


Merry Christmas. :)

Kenpo
December 25, 2007, 09:23 PM
Here is a link I found in doing research on the Saiga, you may find it helpful as its breakdown is simple and concise. It explains the basic differences between the Saiga and the "classic" AK design. At the end of the article you will find what is essentially a "highlights" table.

http://www.savvysurvivor.com/saiga_rifles.htm

For those of you in the know, the only real fault the article points out about the Saiga is long-term parts / accessories availability (with regards to the parts that are dissimilar to standard AK builds, namely, the trigger group) this is mentioned again in the table at the end under maintenance. Any thoughts?? Otherwise the Saiga sounds like a no brainer for a simple, inexpensive, reliable, survival, defense SHTF gun.

nalioth
December 25, 2007, 10:30 PM
For those of you in the know, the only real fault the article points out about the Saiga is long-term parts / accessories availability (with regards to the parts that are dissimilar to standard AK builds, namely, the trigger group) this is mentioned again in the table at the end under maintenance. Any thoughts?? That is a 'non problem', as in less than 60 minutes you can put the Saiga in the same condition as any standard Kalashnikov design.

After you wear out your factory rube goldberg trigger setup, you might be up for a "whole new gun" anyway...

Kenpo
December 27, 2007, 02:03 PM
What is entailed in the complete conversion? I understand there is some manipulation required to fit it with a pistol grip. My main concern is the ability to use AK mags. That is a separate alteration correct? How difficult is it, and what would the cost be to have a gunsmith do it?

nalioth
December 27, 2007, 02:56 PM
Kenpo, http://forum-saiga-12.com has loads and loads of info on converting Saigas.

The conversion processes are quite easy and I personally think it's a waste of money to send it out for a basic conversion.

Kenpo
December 27, 2007, 04:49 PM
Thanks for the link Nalioth.

Kymasabe
December 27, 2007, 10:20 PM
I've owned both. I had the fortunate opportunity to own an Armory USA SSR-85C2 with the 1.6mm Bulgarian receiver. Awesome rifle, super accurate, I loved that AK. Never should have gotten rid of it. I've also had my share of Saiga's and with very little work, can easily be modified to whatever form you're comfortable with. Here's a pic of my last 7.62x39, 20" barrelled Saiga.
http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i206/Kymasabe/Saiga.jpg

Kenpo
December 27, 2007, 10:47 PM
There is a pic of a Saiga just like that on gunbroker. I thought that the Saiga didn't have high cap mags unless converted, with no pistol grip options unless converted. Apparently they can be purchased just like the one above directly from Siaga?

Deer Hunter
December 27, 2007, 11:03 PM
Unless it has the correct amount of compliance parts, it's not legal for it to accept high capacity magazines. If it did have the correct amount, I'm sure it could be legal and still have the sporting stock.

nwilliams
December 27, 2007, 11:08 PM
My converted Saiga I picked up recently......It was converted by Hesse:barf: but then again all they replaced was the gas piston, furniture and trigger group.....So I don't think there was much they could have screwed up and I've taken it out a few times and it shoots great!

http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb264/nwilliams27/Saiga-art.jpg
http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb264/nwilliams27/Saiga2.jpg

geojap
December 27, 2007, 11:13 PM
I really like my .223 Saiga. It has been converted by Tromix and is heavily modified. It is really, really accurate for an AK (2 MOA with 62 grain Barnaul). And it shoots steel-cased ammo reliably, which is nice. I also have an Arsenal SLR-95 milled AKM, which is another really nice rifle. But the SLR is no where near as accurate as the .223 Saiga. The Saiga is an amazing rifle, considering how light it is.

Here is my Saiga with an Aimpoint CompC3 mounted on it.

http://jasonphillips.org/images/saiga2a.jpg

This rifle with everything you see cost me $1375 (including $375 for the scope). Most people don't realize how nice the guts of these rifles are. I could have bought an Arsenal K-101 for about the same money. But I really do think these Saigas are worth altering their configuration and putting some quality parts on them. This is a really, really nice rifle.

The only complaint in the world that I have with this rifle is that there is a little wiggle left-to-right when the mag is seated in the mag well. It doesn't affect firing at all (no failures yet whatsoever), but everyone likes to have a firm magazine seat with no wiggle.

This one was modified by Tromix and accepts Bulgarian waffle mags. It has never even hiccuped.

Kenpo
December 27, 2007, 11:22 PM
Unless it has the correct amount of compliance parts, it's not legal for it to accept high capacity magazines. If it did have the correct amount, I'm sure it could be legal and still have the sporting stock.

Interesting, I guess I am unclear as to what “compliance parts” are needed.

This Saiga http://gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.asp?Item=88510556#PIC cannot take standard AK mags, so I guess it has the compliance parts being as it is using a 30 round mag and skeleton stock. The only down side then is the cost of Saiga mags vs standard AK mags??



My converted Saiga

Nwilliams, gun looks good. You’re in Prescott? My Grandparents live there. They LOVE it. I am down in Mesa.

I read this link; http://www.cross-conn.com/Saiga_Conversion/Step_1.htm

Is this essentially the process you followed in your conversion? I have been told that this process is a little dated, as laws have changed. Some have said that the pins can be removed without drilling, and that the binding posts aren’t definitively needed. I found the link on the website Nalioth suggested. I am trying to get my head around the process before I go buy the Saiga. I am not familiar with the AK platform, and have never done anything like this before.

NOTE- nevermind, I just realized you didn't do the conversion yourself. Was it spendy?

nalioth
December 28, 2007, 12:30 AM
Kenpo, there is no such thing as a "high capacity Saiga mag". You will find factory 10 rounders and then you will find amazingly expensive rewelded military mags (weld added to make them function in the Saiga).

Using any magazine in a 922r incompliant Saiga over 10 rounds is against the law, no matter if it fits and functions or not.

If you read what nwilliams wrote, he did not convert his rifle. He bought it that way. It was converted by a company with a really bad reputation.

You may go by the cross-conn site, or you may read up over at the saiga forum. The cross-conn site is about 10 years old and there are lots of things that can be done now, that he does not show you. The laws have changed since that was written, as well (if you don't live in NY or CA).

rbernie
December 28, 2007, 12:38 AM
Using any magazine in a 922r incompliant Saiga over 10 rounds is against the law, no matter if it fits and functions or not.
<pet peeve>

As far as I know, the ATFE has issued no guidance suggesting that the use of a modified AK magazine in an otherwise-stock Saiga puts the rifle afoul of being considered a 'sporting' arm. The continuous insinuation that using an AK mag in a Saiga requires 922(r) compliance may be prudent in the absence of AFTE guidance, but let's not overstate the case to insist that it's 'against the law'. Truth is, it may or may not be and nobody knows for sure.

</pet peeve>

You wanna prove me wrong? Show me an ATFE letter stipulating that the Saiga would not be considered acceptable for import if it came in with an AK magazine. I'd love to see it.

nalioth
December 28, 2007, 12:53 AM
rbernie, I'm sure that I do not want to prove anything from a jail cell.

Better safe than sorry.

If you want to play with the "it may be or it may not be" illegal, you have fun at it.

Dollar An Hour
December 28, 2007, 01:18 AM
So if I've decided that I want a 100% new AK and have narrowed it to the Arsenal SLR-107CR or the converted Saiga from Atlantic Arms, what are some advantages of one over the other? They are very close in price, one is Russian and the other Bulgarian...

geojap
December 28, 2007, 07:03 AM
So if I've decided that I want a 100% new AK and have narrowed it to the Arsenal SLR-107CR or the converted Saiga from Atlantic Arms, what are some advantages of one over the other? They are very close in price, one is Russian and the other Bulgarian...

They are both nice rifles, especially the Arsenal. But who is doing the Atlantic Saiga conversions? If I was going to pay someone to do a conversion for me, I would only pay two companies, because I know they would do a top notch job. Tony Rumore at Tromix and Chris at AKUSA. Otherwise I would just convert it myself, which can be done for about $150 in parts and some hand tools.

So to answer your question, I would buy the Arsenal if given the choice between those two. Arsenal makes some nice rifles.

rbernie
December 28, 2007, 09:08 AM
rbernie, I'm sure that I do not want to prove anything from a jail cell.

Better safe than sorry.
And I'm OK with that attitude - it's prudent. I only quarrel with your statement "Using any magazine in a 922r incompliant Saiga over 10 rounds is against the law, no matter if it fits and functions or not."

Advising folk to be prudent and PRESUME that it's illegal in the absence of ATFE rulings on the matter is sound advice to give to strangers on the Internet. Telling people that it's flatly illegal may achieve the same end, but it's not quite actually true.

So if I've decided that I want a 100% new AK and have narrowed it to the Arsenal SLR-107CR or the converted Saiga from Atlantic ArmsArsenal makes some superb AKs, but their last round of SLR106's gained a lot of negative press on some forums for feed issues and general unrelaibility.

If you don't want to do a Saiga conversion yourself, I think that Geojap gave you very sound advice.

cazwell
December 30, 2007, 11:47 PM
There is a fellow on youtube shooting a Saiga that I thought was converted. He posted that it is not converted and that you can now buy pistol grip / folding stock configs and 20 and 30 round mags for the Saiga with no modification needed.

If this is true, from a purely practical point of view, what is the point of doing a Saiga conversion? The only reason I have entertained a conversion is for the pistol grip and high cap mags?

Just curious. Thanks.

rbernie
December 31, 2007, 12:04 AM
The stock Saiga trigger is horrid, courtesy of the 'sporterization'. Converting the rifle back to standard AK config allows you to install a decent trigger (e.g. Red Star, G2).

Also - if the Saiga *does* need 922(r) compliance to legally use hi-cap mags, the Russian folder and SureFire mags will get you in deep juju if you don't perform a proper conversion.

geojap
December 31, 2007, 12:06 AM
If this is true, from a purely practical point of view, what is the point of doing a Saiga conversion? The only reason I have entertained a conversion is for the pistol grip and high cap mags?

If one was going to add a pistol grip, I think the main reason to do the conversion correctly is to avoid time in a federal penitentiary and the associated financial loss.

You may want to read up on 922(r) compliance. Saigas were imported as "sporting arms" (which do not fall under 922(r) regulations) and as soon as one adds a pistol grip, they are now not "sporting arms" any longer as was initially allowed for importation. They then need to have the minimum of 10 imported parts to be legal.

This is a good place to start:
http://www.gunsnet.net/forums/showthread.php?t=40375

Hoppy590
December 31, 2007, 12:15 AM
spend the $ and get a converted saiga. likea tromix.

cazwell
December 31, 2007, 12:56 AM
Thanks for the clarification. No need for deep juju here!

10 US made parts huh... I bet that is gonna come around and bite someone in the ass, sounds la little convoluted .

So, does a company like Tromix (I looked a their site, nice rifles - big bucks for an AK) do something special enough to justify the cost, rather than doing it yourself?

Hoppy590
December 31, 2007, 01:00 AM
So, does a company like Tromix (I looked a their site, nice rifles - big bucks for an AK) do something special enough to justify the cost, rather than doing it yourself?

the provide quality work. if you are confident with your skills, by all means, DIY. but Tromix does make GREAT guns.

if your intereseted, it may have been mentioned before, http://www.cross-conn.com/Saiga_Conversion/

geojap
December 31, 2007, 01:18 AM
10 US made parts huh... I

It is actually a maximum of 10 foreign made parts that are required for a semi-auto rifle while falls under 922(r) to be legal. AKs that fall under 922(r) only need 4 to 6 US made parts to be legal.

Dollar An Hour
December 31, 2007, 01:24 AM
Tromix isn't even accepting orders due to backlog I believe.

How does one reach Chris at AK-USA, maybe he is currently selling converted Saigas?

Kenpo
December 31, 2007, 01:52 PM
I am trying to price this out... what is the total spent on the conversion when you do it yourself? After the 250-300 for the rifle?

Thanks for all the help fellas.

nalioth
December 31, 2007, 02:12 PM
Kenpo, the cost is up to you. If you go out and have custom furniture made (or buy the really expensive mall ninja stuff), you can easily spend the price of 2 more Saigas.

I converted a Saiga in my shop for less than $150 in parts.

Kenpo
December 31, 2007, 02:18 PM
Thanks, I only anticipate the basic conversion. I like the Saiga furniture just fine, and am not interested in making it "look as close to..." or anything like that. Just want a reliable, well made AK for as little $ as possible, but better than a WASR 10.

jpwilly
December 31, 2007, 02:24 PM
Don't forget that Lancaster Arms also makes nice AKM builds. I didn't want a conversion...I also wanted real AKM parts. Its built with a new Romanian "G" parts kit for starters. The action is smooth as butter & the finish is top notch!

http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p38/jpwilly/AKM003sm.jpg

Kenpo
December 31, 2007, 02:27 PM
Thats beautiful JP, but I can't imagine it is under 400 bucks! The Saiga I ordered was $260 (7.62) so plus a 150 in parts and I should be at right around 400. Right in my budget. I don't see a better option for a better rifle at a better price... am I missing something?

ma96782
December 31, 2007, 02:46 PM
Just want a reliable, well made AK for as little $ as possible, but better than a WASR 10.IMHO......a Saiga as pictured here........

http://www.savvysurvivor.com/saiga_rifles.htm

With that furniture.....it AIN'T an AK. A real AK, will bring "fear and loathing" to any Liberal's eyes, because it has the, "look" of an evil weapon. Like: I don't have the words to describe what is "pornograpy." But, I know it, when I see it. A "Saiga" doesn't do it. IMHO.

I bought my AK......Just to p*$$ off the Liberals in The Democratic Peoples Republik of Hawaii.
_____________________________

Saiga, plus the costs of parts and gunsmithing to convert it back into a classic AK looking rifle........WHY?

Why not.......just get a Romanian and be done with it. But, IF you must have a RUSSIAN.......then so be it.
_____________________________

Example:
http://www.atlanticfirearms.com/programming/expand.asp?Prodid=234

_____________________________

The results of your search and buying efforts will vary. Some folks have access to large gunshows. With multiple dealers who will let you look through the inventory. While others may have an FFL dealer who may bring in only 1 rifle (you ordered and pre-paid for it), purchased from a wholesaler where he can get the most profit.
_____________________________

Your mileage will vary.

Aloha,Mark

Dollar An Hour
December 31, 2007, 02:51 PM
Well, Saigas are 100% new rifles, whereas a Romanian is varying degrees of used, isn't it?

rbernie
December 31, 2007, 03:05 PM
Saiga, plus the costs of parts and gunsmithing to convet it back into a classic AK looking rifle........WHY?

Why not.......just get a Romanian and be done with it.
I have done both - bought Romanian builds, and bought Saigas. My Saiga conversion in 223 shoots much better (more accurate, smoother action, finer finish) than my SAR-3, and can be had in both a 16" or 21" barrel. I can also get a Saiga in 308 or 12/20ga, whereas I cannot get any other form of AK in those chamberings.

Well, Saigas are 100% new rifles, whereas a Romanian is varying degrees of used, isn't it?Technoically, I believe so, since I have been told that any Romanian being built these days came in as a demilled kit. I've seen some kits that looked like they had never been shot, tho.

I would put a quality Romanian build on par with a converted Saiga in terms of potential longevity and durablility. The key is the word 'quality', which pretty much eliminates many of the WASR/SAR contenders.

And before anyone with a WASR gets mad at me - I have two of em, and love em. They go BANG when needed, and are a fun carbine to beat around. But I also know that they are not what they are not, which is to say a finely crafted example of the breed.

nalioth
December 31, 2007, 04:16 PM
Well, Saigas are 100% new rifles, whereas a Romanian is varying degrees of used, isn't it? You just pegged what lots of people don't realize. Almost every "NEW" AK is built off of a demilled Romanian "G" kit. These kits come in all grades from "holy cow, which mud hole did they dig this out of" to "it didn't leave the warehouse". Which one did Lancaster use to build 'yours' from?

Parkerizing and Gunkote cover up a lot.

rde
December 31, 2007, 10:00 PM
I have not converted mine (saiga). I thought about it. But in the end I found that I personally like it just the way it is. Shoots great, good accuracy for an AK in 7.62x39, and the 10 round mags don't protude below the rifle as far making it easier to handle (and change mags) for me, and (obviously), dead/bang reliable. Given the price I paid for a brand new rifle...I coulnd't be happier with it. And I do have a Chinese MAK-90 to compare it to.

Dynasty
January 1, 2008, 01:01 PM
How do the Yugo M70AB2 AK's and GP WASR-10 compare to the overall package of the Saiga?

I apologize for all the questions. I just want to be happy with my first rifle.

nalioth
January 1, 2008, 01:42 PM
I apologize for all the questions. I just want to be happy with my first rifle. I'd advise you to not be in a rush, then. Go to gun shows and handle the various specimens. If you have friends with any, see if they'll let you shoot them.

Haste makes waste, as they say.

rbernie
January 1, 2008, 01:54 PM
How do the Yugo M70AB2 AK's and GP WASR-10 compare to the overall package of the Saiga?
A quality Saiga conversion is probably better than either. The CAI Yugos are much nicer than their WASRs or SARs, but don't have siderails for an optic. Overall, I would be very happy with a Yugo if one dropped into my lap.

In order - Saiga, Yugo, SAR, WASR.

rob143
January 1, 2008, 03:51 PM
A quality Saiga conversion is probably better than either.

Any place in particular have Saiga's at a good price? The dealer here says they will not be getting any in now for a while. What are they going for typically? Dealer here says 320.00.

rbernie
January 1, 2008, 03:57 PM
Depends on the chambering, barrel length, and the stock options. In the DFW area, you can usually get the 16" 223 or 7.62x39 at any gun show for about $290; the 21" barrels cost a bit more, as does the Dragunov stock version. The 308s go for about $50 more.

rob143
January 1, 2008, 04:12 PM
Depends on the chambering, barrel length, and the stock options. In the DFW area, you can usually get the 16" 223 or 7.62x39 at any gun show for about $290; the 21" barrels cost a bit more, as does the Dragunov stock version. The 308s go for about $50 more.

It is the 16" in 7.62x39, just the standard stock pictured here; http://www.classicarms.us/p_saiga.gif

The only dealer I can find that carries them sells them for 320, but wont have any in for a while. No gun show till the end of next month! I would rather save that 30 bucks and see it go towards conversion parts.

nalioth
January 1, 2008, 05:38 PM
Online vendors pricing starts at $240 for the Saiga at last glance. Use the search feature here, one of the threads had a whole list of Saiga vendors.

RJS34
January 1, 2008, 06:11 PM
I just bought a 7.62 saiga from Mississippi Auto Arms (http://www.mississippiautoarms.com/) for around $250. I bought a 30 round surefire mag on top of it but everything came to around 275 shipped.

14427H
January 1, 2008, 07:55 PM
To hit this very dead horse once again...the 922r issue on using AK magazines in a Saiga is two fold.

If you read the 1998 import ruling letter from BATF...yep, no 10+ rounds AND ALSO no ability to accept a military AK magazine..."large capacity military magazine". If it was just 10 or less there would be no Romy single 10's and the Saiga would take a 10 round AK magazine. If you modify your Saiga to function with an AK magazine without 922r compliance it is not legal....10 round AK, 30 round AK, 1 round AK...it makes no difference. Not different than any other evil part issue.

So...no stock Saigas with AK magazines but what about 30 round Saiga magazines?
It is still the same 922r and "1998 letter" evil parts issue that used the Clinton ban to stop +10 round magazines and the other goodies. No +10 rounds is in there but it is clearly stated that it is based on the Clinton ban being the reason. I have never heard of anyone with a BATF reply to how they still uphold a rule based on the Clinton ban. We do have precedence they might be able to find...maybe...the Eighteenth Amendment along with the Volstead Act that established Prohibition was repealed by the Twenty-first Amendment.

Till they repeal 922r or you comply with 922r, no such thing as legal 30 round Saiga magazines. Not different than any other part issue. You think that no 30 round Saiga magazines is BS? Keep going, add the pistol grip whatever, you are not in 922r compliance.

14427H
January 1, 2008, 08:09 PM
On April 6, 1998, ATF announced that the temporary ban on
importing most "sporting" thumbhole stocked semi-automatic rifles,
which was imposed on November 15, 1997, is now permanent. The
basis for this new ban is yet another re-interpretation of what is
a "sporting" firearm. ATF has decided that the ability of a semi-
automatic rifle to take a "large capacity military magazine" (LCMM)
is an unsporting feature. A LCMM is defined by ATF as a detachable
large capacity magazine that was originally designed and produced
for the military assault rifle from which the semi-automatic rifle
was derived. This is in addition to the features previously listed
in ATF's 1989 report. Thus any semi-automatic rifle which can take
a military magazine is no longer importable for general sale. ATF
wrote a second, long report justifying this sudden re-
interpretation of what constitutes a "sporting firearm", which is
available on the ATF WWW page. The URL for the report, in Adobe
PDF format, is:
http://www.atf.treas.gov/pub/assault_rifles/complete.pdf.


How about this...so I buy a Saiga and it COMES WITH a 30 round magazine and run into the ATF. I am in big trouble?...er, well ...no.

The same letter states:
Note also that section 922(r) only bans "assembly", it is not
a crime to possess a weapon "assembled" in violation of this
section. However it may be subject to seizure and forfeiture, under
some circumstances, if ATF can show it was assembled in knowing or
willful violation of the Gun Control Act, under 18 U.S.C. section
924(d)(1), by clear and convincing evidence

They "may" take it away but you walk away if you bought it that way.

And don't forget bipods...
If the gun is a rifle of the sort subject to section 922(r)
(imported, semi-auto) that accepts a detachable magazine it may not
have:

* pistol grip (it may have a thumbhole stock)
* flash hider or threaded muzzle (a sporting muzzle brake
is OK)
* bipod (a sporting bipod is probably OK, one that clamps
on, or attaches by a swivel stud, and is not permanently
attached to the gun)
* bayonet lug
* folding or collapsing stock
* night sights (luminescent sights)
* grenade launcher
* threaded muzzle (except permanently covered by a nut, or
something similar)
* After April, 1998, it may not take a large capacity
military magazine

It's "probably OK". And see, the magazine issue is from tthe Clinton Ban.

Read this stuff long enough and you are very glad that 18th amendment was repealed.

Happy New Year.

bluedesert17
July 26, 2010, 04:32 PM
I'm thinking about trading my saiga .223 for a golani. Thoughts...

nalioth
July 26, 2010, 05:09 PM
I'm thinking about trading my saiga .223 for a golani. Thoughts...Thoughts?

① It's rude to dig up ancient threads (on any board). Start a new one, please.
② Your question has been asked (and answered) dozens of times. Did you use the search feature?

Welcome to THR.

aka108
July 26, 2010, 05:39 PM
Saigas are pretty nice. Nice enough for Arsenal, a company that used to mill their own recievers and trigger mechanisms, turn to converting Saigas to AK appearance and the price is up about 400 over the stock Saiga. I have one of the milled Arsenals and a Saiga in stock form. They shoot about the same. Neither truly has a edge of the other in the accuracy dept and neither one has ever jammed a round.

Sebastian the Ibis
July 26, 2010, 06:04 PM
Which would you rather have? Converted Saiga
Which is more fun to plink with? Draw
Which is easier to maintain? Draw
Which is cheaper to shoot? Draw
Which has a bigger after market? Difficult question. All Ak's are slightly different so they usually need a bit of bending or filing to make aftermarket parts fit. A standard converted Saiga is about as universal as anything else, i.e. it will most likely need bending and filing. However, lots of people convert so there are plenty of Saiga aftermarket parts.
Which is more accurate up to 150 yards? Converted Saiga
Which would you feel safer with (self defense)? Converted Saiga, then AK, then unconverted Saiga. An unconverted Saiga is not 922(r) compliant so it is illegal to put a high cap mag in it.
Which, out of the two, would be your choice as a first rifle and why? Converted Saiga.

nalioth
July 26, 2010, 06:08 PM
ZOMBIE THREAD ALERT

Please mind your post dates, this one is 3 years old.

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