Help me understand the love/hate with AKs


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ShooterMcGavin
November 23, 2008, 02:39 AM
There seems to be so much I don't understand about AKs :) First, they seem to be something high on the list of items to be banned. I am somewhat guessing because they are in such demand now.

1. Why are they so likely to be banned (the "hate" part)? There are meaner-looking guns out there. Also, there are more deadly guns out there. The AK seems, to me, to be just a reliable and effective gun, but not such an extreme gun to make it a focus of a ban effort. What am I missing there?
...Ok, I do understand that they regularly carry 30 rounds of an effective caliber.

2. I handled a few AKs tonight and I don't see the love. They are clunky, cheap feeling, cheep looking, and less than great accuracy. Cheap? Yes, they are cheap (or, they were cheap until now). However, I have never fallen in love with a girl for the simple reason that she is a cheap date :) There has to be more. What is it about the AK?
...Ok, I do understand that they regularly carry 30 rounds of an effective caliber ;)

Thanks.

ETA: How much should my dealer be asking for two Romanian AKs and a Russian Saiga? He has the Romanian AKs going for $650 and the Saiga for $700, I think. That doesn't really seem "cheap" for a gun that I don't really "love" :) Thoughts on that?

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Vegaslaith
November 23, 2008, 02:49 AM
They're cheap to make. Parts are relatively cheap. They're easy to use and strip, and accurate enough for their intended purpose- a man sized target at 300 meters or less. What's not to love?

ShooterMcGavin
November 23, 2008, 03:00 AM
Oh, I should add... They do not seem to be that cheap. The guy was selling the AKs at the shop for $650 and up, and the cheap ones had used barrels, etc.

Prince Yamato
November 23, 2008, 03:01 AM
1. They are easy to demonize because they are the most frequently used weapon by our enemies. It's not the fault of the rifle, it's the fault of the former Soviet Union for shipping the rifles to whoever wanted them to fight the US.

2. The reason I love the AK is because the rifle means business. It works... always. It's reasonably accurate.

At the risk of sounding like a communist, I also like the gun because it's unpretentious. It's not a rich man's gun (or at least wasn't until 2 weeks ago). It's not meant to be tricked out with electronics. You can pretty much refinish the wood and that's it (of course you CAN add electronics to the gun, but why?). It's a rifle you could build in your garage (and some do). It's a rifle that fits all sizes. It looks both modern (in plastic) and old fashioned (in wood). You can match it with a suit or combat fatigues.

Finally, I guess you could say I like the gun because it seems to espouse American values... it's a good deal at a great price. It's also family friendly. It's so simple even junior can shoot it!

jpatterson
November 23, 2008, 03:05 AM
I just think they are butt-ugly. AR15 :)

All jokes aside, people seem to like them. I would probably like them if I had one too, but something about them just makes me... I don't even know.

ShooterMcGavin
November 23, 2008, 03:13 AM
I just think they are butt-ugly. AR15
That's pretty much how I feel :)

2. The reason I love the AK is because the rifle means business. It works... always. It's reasonably accurate.
That is a good point. Ok, maybe I have underrated the complete reliability of the gun.

Or, maybe I don't understand how cheap they are SUPPOSED to be. Is the guy at the shop charging a lot for the gun because of the recent rush to buy them?

General Geoff
November 23, 2008, 03:16 AM
They are the proverbial "preferred weapon of the enemy."

Due to media portrayal and actual use by the U.S.S.R. during the Cold War (and most of the United States' enemies since then), the Kalashnikov-pattern rifle has forever reserved a spot in the average American's mind that screams "Eeeeevil!!!"

anymanusa
November 23, 2008, 03:18 AM
I love my AK's. They are much less accurate than my AR's, but I've NEVER had a jam with my AK's, my AR's jam every time I shoot them.

nwilliams
November 23, 2008, 04:14 AM
One of the things I LOVE about the AK is that the anti's out there HATE them:D

I have four AK's at the moment, two Norinco's a Bulgarian SLR-95 and a converted Saiga. As far as I'm concerned AK's are like M&M's having only one just isn't satisfying:rolleyes:

The AK may not be for everyone, I find the ergonomics quite appealing. Its simple, proven and will most likely go bang if you pull the trigger even under the harshest of conditions. They are not supposed to be match grade rifles, if you want high accuracy and top of the line craftsmanship then look elsewhere and be prepared to spend more. However it should also be pointed out that there are some very high quality AK's out there and far from cheap. However even with a cheap lower quality AK you can almost always count on it going bang if you pull the trigger. The beauty of the AK lays in its simplicity, its not supposed to be pretty or highly accurate its purpose is to be reliable.

http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb264/nwilliams27/AKs1.jpg

N003k
November 23, 2008, 04:42 AM
Personally, I love the AK. Why? Its rugged, it keeps going even when most other guns wont. It has a good punch behind it, and I plain just like the looks too! Unfortunatly, due to state law I cant own one, so I personally just have a VZ-58, which is...similar...in appearence anyways...

As for the hate, well, in part BECAUSE it's cheap really...as others have said, it's the generic weapon of the USA's enemy in appearence pretty much, and due to how cheap it is, it's assumed all bad people must have them, and the only possible uses are those that are for evil ends. Obviously, thats not true, but theres a reason that the AK is the term used whenever most people refer to how evil 'assault weapons' are.

Hoplophile
November 23, 2008, 04:51 AM
I'll admit, some of us like the AK because it's "Eeeeevil". There's a history behind the machine; it's not soulless. It's not even a pretty history. It's real. It's visceral. It's won the freedom of millions and been the avatar of the darkest behavior of man. It is an idea. It is the blood of the class struggle, it's communist as hell. It's more American than apple pie, shows that we're open minded. We'll take any idea as long as it's a good one. Cheap (well, sorta), reliable, simple, GOOD. Everyone can shoot it! It's the American rifle.

From an engineering standpoint, it's also beautiful. The long stroke, the loose bolt, the harmonic oscillation of the barrel, and you can practically make it out of car doors. It's an engineering masterpiece. Short-stroke, tilting-breech, whatever, the long stroke is...a masterpiece.

It's a very attractive gun. Aesthetically. Originally, I thought it was a little ugly, but the old wood, the slant of the gas port, the distinctive dust cover, the curved magazine. It's an AK, it says, when you look at it, "I am a gun. I am supposed to perform a specific function. This is a function I perform quite well. I am a rare example of accidental form; I am beautiful only because I was never meant to be."

It is a good rifle because it makes me feel safer.

And that's why I love them.

People hate them for all the very same reasons, even the last one. They hate it because it's "the evil gun", they hate it because America can also be very closed-minded, too, they hate it because it's cheap, because it's ugly, and because it makes people feel safer. And because ding dongs like me wax poetic about a silly piece of metal and wood.

I just broke up with my girlfriend.

Shung
November 23, 2008, 06:18 AM
Noo3k.. what kind of law can forbid you an AK and allow you a VZ ??? seems THAT odd to me..

MRIman
November 23, 2008, 06:55 AM
The cheap cost of the AK (not now,@ 7-9 years ago) made it
cost effective to buy.

You could get an SAR-2 for $229 and ammo for $90 per K.
SAR-1's were like $239 and ammo was $69-$80 per K.
That is what "made me love" the AK.

VirgilCaine
November 23, 2008, 06:55 AM
A ban on AK's specifically.

Geezer Glide
November 23, 2008, 07:03 AM
A lot of older shooters don't like them because they have been used against us in war.

Starship1st
November 23, 2008, 07:09 AM
I think the AK grows on you. I at first did not want one but as I realized its simple design and ease to use I fell in love.

The anti guns hate them because they know of the number produced world wide and so many people love them. When they were cheap they were easy to get.

I love my AKs I would suggest taking a second or third look at the AKs and maybe it will start to grow on you too? :cool:

Mr.510
November 23, 2008, 07:49 AM
+1 to what Hoplophile said. I don't think there's a prettier rifle than a blued, stamped receiver AK with all blonde furniture and a ribbed machinery cover. It's 100% function and is a classic '40s design. It's got pretty curves, great proportion, and a downright genius design. It is THE quintessential assault rifle. The one that started it all. There is almost nothing you can do to make one not work. When you pull the trigger it WILL go bang. (Or if you're a lucky SOB it'll go bang -bang -bang -bang!) There has probably never been a more reliable firearm mass produced. There has certainly never been a more reliable full auto firearm produced. You can trust an AK, ANY AK, with your life. No matter where it was made or by whom, what it's been through, how beat to crap it is, whether or not it's ever been cleaned. When you pull the trigger it will go bang. Then it will chamber another round, and the next time you pull the trigger it will go bang again. You can bet your life with 100% confidence that this rifle will not fail to fire. Ever. It has been said that the Avtomat Kalashnikov has killed more human beings than any other weapon system ever produced. It is probably seen by the antis as the single most evil thing on this Earth, and for that reason alone every American should have one! :evil:


PS: I highly recommend the book "AK-47: The Weapon that Changed the Face of War ".

hso
November 23, 2008, 08:47 AM
Why are they so likely to be banned (the "hate" part)?

They were iconic of revolutionaries and terrorists and have become the default symbol put on the screen of every TV station when a shooting occurs. This creates the image in people's minds associating the thing with the actions of the BGs.

As to why they're so well thought of, at intermediate ranges they are sufficiently accurate and under the harshest conditions with nearly complete neglect they work.

LKB3rd
November 23, 2008, 08:49 AM
I think we love them because they are simple, reliable, and do the job they are intended for quite well.
Those who hate them do so because of their association with enemies in past and current wars, and others are afraid of them because they get demonized so frequently on the news. An example of this is a news story I saw last night with a re-enactment, where they described a shooting with "semi-automatic weapons," while the re-enactment showed a full auto AK shooting in the window of a car.

22-rimfire
November 23, 2008, 09:03 AM
The man's got an AK, run!

I think they are used as the symbol of what is termed an "assault rifle" by people.

Personally I think they are ugly and cheaply made. But thy're dependable and generally safe to operate. That's why they're popular.

statelineblues
November 23, 2008, 09:21 AM
what kind of law can forbid you an AK and allow you a VZ ??? seems THAT odd to me..

States with AWB on the books specifically ID the AK or "similar style" weapons as banned, but because of the way they are defined in the law other guns can be imported and sold (SKS and VZ-58, for example).

You'll notice AK's sold in the US are mostly from former satellite states (Romanila, Bulgaria, Poland, etc) because in the 1990's then Pres. Clinton placed a ban on importing them from Russia, but anywhere else was fine.

gunNoob
November 23, 2008, 09:26 AM
I love how they look and their history is vast

XTerminator
November 23, 2008, 09:33 AM
There's just something about an AK that says " I defy authority"

That makes you want to hold it defiantly over your head and shout:
"WOLVERINES" :D

Steve

armoredman
November 23, 2008, 09:40 AM
No ban on AKs in THIS state, but I still got the similar looking but differant designed CZ vZ-58 instead.

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b13/armoredman/vZ-58table1.jpg

I had a Hungarian AKM back in the late 80s, a Norinco clone after that, and a WASR-10, which was by far the worst version of the three, (wish I'd kept the Hungarain, straight shooter, ended up in Alaska with a shipmate.), and the redeeming qualities they all had, at the time, was they were cheap, reliable, would hit a man sized target at 100 yards, and shot widely available cheap surplus ammo, kinda like the 80s SKS, ($69 each) craze. The vZ-58 was far more expensive than those ones from back in the day, (you don't want to know what I paid for the Hungarian!), but so far, far more accurate, and just seems to be far better built. Plus, the cheap surplus ammo died some time ago, the only way I can cheaply keep guns in 7.62x39mm running is by reloading.
AKs drive the anti's nuts, which is a good thing. :) It would be interesting to see if a single police department in the US issues them, and get a picture of one of them with it in uniform...

grimjaw
November 23, 2008, 09:41 AM
When the rifles and ammunition were cheap, they were fun. Now, while less expensive to run than an AR, they are not as fun for me.

jm

GeezerwithGuns
November 23, 2008, 10:16 AM
What's not to like? This one is very accurate. Reliable as a rock.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I like the way it looks.

I also like ARs..... Is there something wrong with me?:confused:

http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c355/geezer99/DCP_1948.jpg

N003k
November 23, 2008, 10:22 AM
To fully answer you Shung, in CT, we have an AWB. Basically it says that if it has a detachable magazine, and has two of the following: A folding or telescoping stock, a pistol grip that "protrudes conspicously beneath the action of the weapon", a bayonet mount, flash suppressor or threaded barrel designed to accomadate a flash supressor, or a grenade launcher. Then it's illegal. However it ALSO lists several guns by name. Such as the AK-47, and the AR-15. Now, there's a few WASRs available in my state, my first rifle was actually a WASR-3 which..for some odd reason had feed issues, I think it's because it was converted to .223 rather then manufactured in...

So I traded it in, and put the money towards the VZ-58, which has an attachment put on permenantly over the threads, and it was made as a sporter without the bayonet lug, so it's legal. Also, mine has the wooden like stock and grips, so it's closer to the AK then the other image posted of one.

benEzra
November 23, 2008, 11:01 AM
I think an AK with a halfway decent finish looks better than a Ruger No. 1 or an over-under shotgun, personally. I like the mechanical look, the exposed gas piston tube, and the overall aesthetic, particularly with a 20-round magazine:

http://www.commongroundcommonsense.org/forums/uploads/1168567538/med_gallery_260_23_20379.jpg

They are remarkably reliable, easy to clean, fun to shoot (I shoot IPSC style carbine with mine), and the ergonomics aren't bad at all if you understand how to run one.

LKB3rd
November 23, 2008, 11:05 AM
You can buy and convert a Saiga in CT as long as it isn't in 7.62x39. You can also get an AK74. You just have to conform to the "no two evil features" part of the AWB, and 922r.
As for AR15's, it says Colt Ar15's, so you can get an AR made by anyone else, again as long as it is "ban compliant." This basically ends up meaning no collapsible or folding stock, a muzzle brake instead of a flash hider, permanently affixed, and no bayonet lug.

rocinante
November 23, 2008, 11:06 AM
Why ask why? I went to a machine gun shoot yesterday and every AK was happily going rat a tat tat while a fair portion of the ARs had owners trying to reproduce that consistent sound unsuccessfully.

Every negative perception posted above has merit but bottom line even the haters can't ignore its proletarian power as an utterly reliable weapon with arguably acceptable accuracy.

jdc1244
November 23, 2008, 11:26 AM
2. I handled a few AKs tonight and I don't see the love. They are clunky, cheap feeling, cheep looking, and less than great accuracy.

It depends on what AKs you’ve handled. My Yugo M70 is as solid as a rock and exhibits excellent build quality, nothing cheap about it. The love comes from their reliability and ease of maintenance (or lack of maintenance;)), simple design, and the very effective round they chamber. Were I to use it for SD/HD on my property I’d be using it at less then 100 yards – well within any AK's accuracy range. To date my Yugo has never failed to fire and eats all kinds of ammo reliably. What’s not to love, indeed.

nalioth
November 23, 2008, 11:50 AM
Every factory that produces AKs today is doing it for less than $100 per gun. This cost includes the cleaning kit, 4 mags, bayonet, sling, etc.

This is why I continuously point out that Arsenal, Inc is making some great tasting kool-aid with it's marketing department (effective ads) and sales techniques ( only importing 5000 of each type of AK they decide to sell - thus creating a "rarity" when all are sold out). Arsenal of Bulgaria is contnually cranking out every type of AK Arsenal has sold here, and they could easily sell them indefinitely - but for the artificial environment Arsenal, Inc has created.

That said, even the 'least expensive - worst finished" Kalashnikov is gonna go BANG just as reliably as the most overpriced and "prettiest" one.

klover
November 23, 2008, 12:02 PM
the temperature range within which these ugly weapons operate:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXKXtM3hFQE
I have extra mittens to shoot mine at -50 Celsius and a tank top to shoot above 50 Celsius as per manufacturing warranties!:p

You can really tell these folks are 50 years behind in design. When the first Mig defected from Cuba, they found a 1500 lb. vaccume tubed radar and laughed!
Then someone suggested that the EMP of a nuclear bomb would not affect the old technology!

Besides, they're butt ugly.:neener:

Pilot
November 23, 2008, 12:23 PM
Love = They work

Hate = Media created hype.

ohgrady
November 23, 2008, 01:28 PM
I agree some "older" guys don't like them because they were the guns that shot at them in the 60's and 70's. I was at the range this summer and saw a rifle in the booth next to me that I couldn't tell if it was an AK47 or AK74. I ask the old guy near the booth what it was and he proceeded to tell me how he didn't like those AK47s as they had been used against him in Vietnam(it was an AK74, owned by a kid who had left his booth for a minute).
Another reason they are on the "hate" list is criminals and gangs. I asked a Cook County Public Defender how often he saw them used in crimes around Chicago and he surprised me by saying "a lot! The gangs like them."
My own "love" of the rifle has been the simplicity(and price). After I picked up my first WASR, it got me hooked. It wasn't long until I picked up a parts kit. Until recently I had very little experience with centerfire rifles. Given ammo prices, I would not have been able to afford to shoot a 30-06 or 308 the way I shot my WASR all summer. I will admit there is also a little bit of enjoyment in having something that so many people hate and say "why do you need that?"

RP88
November 23, 2008, 01:41 PM
love:
-simplicity that works every time
-rugged and reliable; will outlast almost any gun
-cheap
-lightweight and comfortable (although the steel buttplate can suck)
-powerful with reasonable accuracy

hate:
-some don't like the ergos
-some don't like the safety
-most don't like its lesser accuracy and its crude iron sights
-alot don't like its non-American origin and appeal to scumbags

...but the number one reason why people hate it:
-ALL don't like the fact that it's not an AR

jpwilly
November 23, 2008, 01:54 PM
I think most people hate two things #1 is the low cost of such an effective rifle. It's not the most accurate but it wasn't designed to punch paper or varmints. #2 it offers a high volume of fire in a lethal intermediate caliber anyone can fire and maintain in the worst conditions. So do the math Cheap reliable gun + anybody can use it...pretty scary for some! I personally don't want to get shot at by anything larger than a 500fps BB gun.

wacki
November 23, 2008, 02:00 PM
I don't own one (yet) but I love it because it pisses of the politicians, is cheap enough that just about anyone can afford it, legendary reliability, very simple, and is accurate enough to get the job done in 99% of combat situations.

I'm a sniper at heart so I go with the AR's but the AK has a LOT of pluses to it. If I was president, I'd buy every male over 18 an AK. :-D

N003k
November 23, 2008, 02:07 PM
You can buy and convert a Saiga in CT as long as it isn't in 7.62x39. You can also get an AK74. You just have to conform to the "no two evil features" part of the AWB, and 922r.
As for AR15's, it says Colt Ar15's, so you can get an AR made by anyone else, again as long as it is "ban compliant." This basically ends up meaning no collapsible or folding stock, a muzzle brake instead of a flash hider, permanently affixed, and no bayonet lug.

Eh, wheres the fun of the AK if it isn't in the original caliber? As for the AK74, I'd love to, if I could find any shops with them, like I said though, I already have a few EBR's, a Stag15 (AR15 made by Stag Arms), the VZ58, and then a CETME. All Ban Compliant, the Stag and Cetme with muzzle breaks. I've considered the Saiga, just for having one and a conversion for the .308 models though, doubt I could find one at the moment though, and busy paying off a SVT-40 first. Something about Russian rifles attract me...

Thats the thing with Russian rifles I think, like the AK, most seem rugged, yet effective, surprisingly well made, yet simple....

HorseSoldier
November 23, 2008, 02:08 PM
1. Why are they so likely to be banned (the "hate" part)?

A) Like other people have already noted it's associated with communist revolutionaries and terrorists all over the world. It's also associated (though less consistently) with high profile crimes like the North Hollywood bank robbery.

B) The entertainment media helps fuel this association to an extent.

C) They're not made here in the USA. It's easier to scrape up some political hysteria about foreigners shipping their deadly assault weapons here to the US of A than it is to try to shut down the AR-15, since you're killing off fewer manufacturing jobs going after the AK.

D) They have a reputation for being easy to operate and easy to keep operational -- while the validity of this compared to other similar weapons is debatable, I think these supposed characteristics of the weapon resonate with the gun-banners who don't really have a clue what they're talking about and whose knowledge of guns is limited to bumper-sticker length factoids.

2. I handled a few AKs tonight and I don't see the love. They are clunky, cheap feeling, cheep looking, and less than great accuracy.

There is a certain functional aesthetic about them that some people like.

To be fair though, for what they are -- a combat long gun -- their accuracy is entirely acceptable, particularly if shooting better ammo than stuff like Wolf which has some extreme spreads of velocity from round to round.

SlamFire1
November 23, 2008, 02:58 PM
I have a WASR, took it out and zero'd it. It went bang. Each and every time. The trigger is awful and the group size is laughable.

That being said, I think it is the best battle rifle of the second half of the 20th century. You can give it to untrained, gun ignorant troops, and it will function. Even Private Jessica could have gotten some shots off. (when asked why she did not shoot, Private Jessica said "my gun jammed". She had no idea how to clear a jam. )

The irrational anti gun media has made the AK the poster boy for gun evil. They picked something and demonized it. Could have been canned beer, apples, or anything else.

For me, I'll take a M14 out to the FLOT, but I would issue AK's to the rest.

M&PVolk
November 23, 2008, 06:46 PM
I don't hate the AK, nor do I think it is an evil rifle. That said, I don't own one, choosing instead the AR. I like the AK's reliability, price point, and even the looks of the gun. What I don't like about the AK is it's inherent lack of accuracy, the machine gun style feel, and the effective range of the 7.62x39 cartridge.

The AR allows me an affordable solution for plinking, varmint hunting and personal defense. The 5.56 is a great cartridge when combined in the AR platform.

If I was caught in a chaotic wooded battlefield, I take the AK, but that is the only scenario I find it truly suited for. I still would like to have one though :)

franconialocal
November 23, 2008, 07:53 PM
Ahh...the old AR v. AK argument. Frankly, I love (and own) both. If you ever get the chance to go on YouTube then type in "AR AK" or any variation of.....and a host of videos come up about the topic and comparing the two. My favorite is the one of the guy firing the AK while his buddy litterally sifts dirt into the action as he is firing!!!! Awesome!!

--The AR is much more accurate, and the tolerances are much higher in it's construction but therein lies the problem...frequent failures esp when dirty (It loves to stay quite lubed). Also (for me anyway) the round leaves a bit to be desired as far as power and punch. It more than makes up for it in weight (the AR bullets being about 1/2 the weight as AK), accuracy, "commonality", etc.

--The AK is "looser" in it's tolerances, owing to it's "innaccuracy", but it's due to these low tolerances that the gun ALWAYS fires even after being submerged, muddy, frozen, dirty, etc. etc. 7.62 is a great round, and the AK (from all the reports I've seen) was really designed to just huck a bunch of lead down range at a high rate of fire, which it does quite well!!!

That's the gist of it.....please feel free to correct or add!!!

HorseSoldier
November 23, 2008, 08:35 PM
That's the gist of it.....please feel free to correct or add!!!

Sounds about right, though both sides of the debate exaggerate the differences between the two weapons wildly on the internet (i.e. AKs jam when abused and can actually hit the broad side of a barn; ARs aren't that hard to keep running, but aren't half-MOA guns off the rack; etc.).

benEzra
November 23, 2008, 08:45 PM
It has been my experience that most people who bash the AK have limited experience with them.

They are less accurate than an AR, but they are not inaccurate, unless you consider a Winchester 94 inaccurate. Ergonomics are not bad if you understand how to run one.

One pet peeve re: terminology---the AK's reliability is due to loose clearances, not loose tolerances. Tolerance is how much a part deviates from the ideal engineering drawing spec; clearance is the slack between parts.

Out-of-tolerance parts can make a gun too tight as easily as they can make it too lose.

Rubber_Duck
November 23, 2008, 09:27 PM
I'll add to this....

I love the AK for many reasons:

-It's sexy. Some think it is ugly though.
-It's rugged and durable. It will last forever, and parts won't need replacing because they break. They'll need replacing because you lose them during cleaning. But there aren't many small parts anyways (no cotter pins and such).
-You can bounce it down a cliff, hike down and pick it up, and it will function just fine.
-It's very simple in design, with fewer parts than other rifles, and the 'clearances' allow for much grime and muck without fouling up the action.
-You can dig it out of frozen mud and it will simply shrug it off and fire.
-It's accurate at all "practical" combat distances.
-Cheap to mass-produce.
-Requires little training to use.
-Easy to clean. I can get my AK from filthy to clean and lubed in 10 minutes. My AR and SKS take me 30-45 minutes each.
-There's something about steel and wood that plastic and aluminum can't match.
-I can trust my life to an AK, even if it was dragged through the dirt across Zimbabwe.
-It is the weapon that has brought many people their freedom, and allows small groups of individuals to take on oppressive governments.

The cartidge itself: the 7.62x39mm will shoot through walls, it will shoot through cars, and it will put a man down very quickly. It is effective at all 'practical' combat distances. You can take a deer with it. The taper in the case makes case extraction easy. It's also economical to produce, cheap to shoot.

The AK used to be an obsolete design, but folding/collapsible stocks and accessory rails have made it as capable as an AR-15/G36K/whatever-modern-design. It is viable as a 21st century rifle. It will be a force to be reckoned with for decades to come.

I like how much "bang for the buck" one can get with an AK. It's a good utility rifle, reliable, packs a good punch, and customizable to the users needs.

Personally, I think the term "assault rifle" is negative. I never use that term myself.


That said,

I like the AK. It keeps me safe. :)




An AK a day keeps the zombies at bay.


My WASR-10:
http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=88188&stc=1&d=1227494440

hounddog
November 23, 2008, 09:29 PM
My brother once summed it up as follows. "An AR is a scalpel, the AK is a sledge hammer."

ShooterMcGavin
November 23, 2008, 09:36 PM
One pet peeve re: terminology---the AK's reliability is due to loose clearances, not loose tolerances. Tolerance is how much a part deviates from the ideal engineering drawing spec; clearance is the slack between parts.

Out-of-tolerance parts can make a gun too tight as easily as they can make it too lose.
BenEzra, That's a very good point to make.

Ok, you guys have me pretty well convinced. I want one, but what about the current prices I'm looking at?

For a Romanian AK with 2 mags, bayonet, and collapsible stock, the guy wants $650. Am I getting ripped off for that price?

WardenWolf
November 23, 2008, 09:37 PM
The AK is a better survival rifle than an AR, no doubts there. If I bought an AR, it would come AFTER I already had an AK. Why? Because I want at least one rifle that'll keep working if I don't have access to the proper cleaning supplies.

The AR is a good gun for those who have time and supplies to maintain it. It's not a good gun for those who may be separated from those supplies.

sdj
November 23, 2008, 10:00 PM
A good walk through the AK's history (and the Uncle Sam's role in spreading the AK):

http://www.amazon.com/AK-47-Weapon-that-Changed-Face/dp/0470168803/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1227494937&sr=1-6

An enjoyble, short read. All the more enjoyable for fans.

I never thought I'd like the AK, either. I did warm up to it's ease of use and functionality, though. It's a breeze to clean, accurate enough, packs a wicked wallop and has a unique aesthetic.

Enjoy.

For a Romanian AK with 2 mags, bayonet, and collapsible stock, the guy wants $650. Am I getting ripped off for that price?

That's the same price our local dealer is moving them for, too. It's a lot higher than what we are used to, for sure.

Almond27
November 23, 2008, 10:26 PM
We have a local dealer selling them with all the Mil surplus stuff for 500 so I'd shop around just a little bit more but 650 might be a steal a couple years down the road. Who knows

priler
November 23, 2008, 10:41 PM
i'll add to this too.here is part of a documentary from,i believe,the history channel.they are comparing the m16 and the ak47.it is clear to me that some of the conclusions on there are at least part correct but many are not.they are at least trying to exaggerate a few things.if you go about 4 minutes and 20 seconds into it,you will see how badly the barrel on the ak wobbles and shortly there after, the guy shooting the ak can't even hit the large target at only 200 yards.this is greatly exaggerated and i call shinanigens on the history channel.here is the video:youtube.com/watch?v=MqGxwpOBNrc

a bad example was probably used on purpose.

now here is an example of a normaly functioning ak and the guy isn't even holding it very steady.notice how the barrel doesn't wobble at all.
here:youtube.com/watch?v=Civ2j-qNLgw

it seems to me that "lovers" of both of these rifles like to trash each others but there is at lest some truth in what they say.with a good ak,you can hit a man sized target at 300m as long as you do your part and with a posp scope you can go beyond that.the right posp scope is even calibrated for the 7.62x39 bullet drop and you can switch instantly from different distances.the m16 is in fact inherently more accurate but it also is no sniper rifle but you can snipe with it up to a point.it's just no m24.

reliability issues are also exaggerated on both sides but there is also alot of truth in it and i have seen this up close over and over again on the range with aks and ars of many different makes....as for me,if my life depends on it and i have a choice,i'll take the one with a piston/carrier and a bolt with a couple of strong lugs,thank you very much.

Mr.510
November 24, 2008, 06:48 AM
ShooterMcGavin,
I bought a new 16" barreled Saiga in 7.62x51 aka .308 Winchester last week. It was $529, $579 out the door. Anybody that's interested in getting an AK should take a long, hard look at the Saigas. These are not some slapped together parts kit gun whose only new part is a crappy US made receiver. This is a genuine, brand new, Russian made AK rifle. They are produced at the Izhmash factory where Mikhail Kalashnikov still works to this day! :) Most of the hoopla about Saigas has been focused on the Saiga 12, a 12 gauge AK-pattern shotgun. They also make Saiga AK rifles in 5.56/.223, 7.62x39, 7.62x51, and 30-06. The only "funny" thing about these weapons is that they come with a terrible shotgun style stock and the trigger group has been moved rearward. This is how they "sporterized" the AK-47 into a "hunting rifle" for importation to the USA. A Dremel, $75-200 in parts (depending on your taste in stocks/pistol grips) and a few hours and you can have it looking/working just like any other AK..... accept it will be a brand new Russian made AK! (Yes, this is 100% legal.) If you don't want to convert one yourself Classic Arms.us sells some pre-converted Saigas. I suggest avoiding the 30-06 version as it's parts do not readily interchange with other AK or aftermarket parts. I put an Ace side folder on my .308 with an Ergo grip and Tapco G2 trigger group. I don't know the rules for posting links to other boards here so do a web search for "Saiga 12 forum" and you'll find a place with everything you could ever want to know about these fantastic guns. :D

madcratebuilder
November 24, 2008, 07:21 AM
There's just something about an AK that says " I defy authority"

Gosh, I always thought it has "I don't have any money" j/k

Not now, they are almost as much as an AR.


That makes you want to hold it defiantly over your head and shout:
"WOLVERINES"
I watched that last night

MD_Willington
November 24, 2008, 10:49 AM
I like mine because it is a basic machine, uses a very common caliber (.223), it is easy to use and maintain.

If I'm shooting past 100m I'm going to be using something better suited for the job at hand.

H2O MAN
November 24, 2008, 11:01 AM
ShooterMcGavin

I handled a few AKs tonight and I don't see the love.

They are clunky, cheap feeling, cheep looking, and less than great accuracy.




:what: You sir, are handling the wrong AKs!


http://www.athenswater.com/images/T56SHTF-PKG.jpg:evil:

aka108
November 24, 2008, 11:02 AM
Son kept a AK in his vehicle in Iraq. The m-16's had to be kept squeeky clean to run well and were cleaned upwards of two times a day. The picked up AK's were dirty but fired with 100% reliability.

Clipper
November 24, 2008, 11:09 AM
For a Romanian AK with 2 mags, bayonet, and collapsible stock, the guy wants $650. Am I getting ripped off for that price?

I would say you are, but I bought mine a year ago for $219.00 w/standard stock and no bayonet.

ByAnyMeans
November 24, 2008, 06:04 PM
I have alot of love for the AK.

I'm mainly into shotguns and handguns but have been moving to rifles. I have .22's to train and plink with but for an all around gun nothing beats an AK. It's no tackdriver for sure but with practice on the iron sites it's good and I added a red-dot site which has really tightened the groups. In staying with the dependability aspect if in a SHTF scenario and the red-dot goes down it takes a second to detach the quick release scope and it's right back to irons.

Again if I was going to only have one centerfire rifle it would be an AK. It can handle anything you throw at it, some not as good as others but like I said it's a "all around rifle". It was cheap (450 with red-dot, converted
Saiga done myself) that will probably still work when my grandkids have it and it's still the cheapest ammo I can find. Reload for it and your accuracy really picks up. It's my only centerfire rifle and will probably stay that way for a long time but no need to change what works.

jmar254
November 24, 2008, 08:11 PM
I wanted an AR & AK and couldn't decide which one to buy first. Couple months ago at the Tanner Gun Show in Denver, 5280 had about 7 AKs with the two mags, bayonet, oil can, cleaning kit the whole ball of wacks for $420 and I only bought one STUPID STUPID STUPID, although I did get a Bushmaster AR15. But I am really kicking myself for not buying more of the AKs.

I like the wood AKs.

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