Saiga SHTF Rifle.. 5.56x45, 7.62x39?


PDA






Conall
January 12, 2010, 04:47 PM
Last year I needed some money in a hurry and was forced to sell my SLR-95, leaving me with nothing but an old Maverick 88 shotgun.
It's about time I buy another SHTF rifle, and have heard good things about converted Saigas.

I'm thinking about buying an unconverted 5.56x45/7.62x39 Saiga, converting it, then adding a folding stock, pistol grip with finger grooves, and a muzzle brake. Maybe some new sights, too.

Thanks to the SLR-95 I have experience with 7.62x39 but have never fired a 5.56 rifle, and have a question.
If I bought one in 5.56, I was planning on using Federal 55gr XM193F as my SHTF ammo for the gun, and I reckon if I ever had to use it, It'd probably be from just a few feet away from the target if someone broke into my house, up to about 100 yards max if someone shot at me from afar.
Would that ammunition be adequate under those circumstances?

I also have a quick question about adding a muzzle brake.
Would a brake designed for a 7.62 AK work fine for one in 5.56?

Thanks in advance.

If you enjoyed reading about "Saiga SHTF Rifle.. 5.56x45, 7.62x39?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
lobo9er
January 12, 2010, 04:55 PM
I have heard the 5.56 AK don't have the reliablilty as the 7.62x39 due to the cartridge taper of the necking. I doubt I worded that correctly. I'm sure someone here will correct me. The youtube vids of AK'S failing are 5.56. I would say unless you have another rifle chambered for 5.56 I would go with x39. Besides if some day you want to hunt 7.62x39 is good enough for deer, 5.56 isn't even legal to hunt with in some areas for white tail. A 7.62x39 AK and a case of ammo would be my choice is I were buying a shtf rifle.

Conall
January 12, 2010, 04:59 PM
I've heard that Saigas in 5.56 are very reliable..
I was originally considering an SLR-106 but decided against it for that very reason.
I will NOT buy ANY gun that has a high risk of jamming, so if that really is true for Saigas, x39 it is.

iyaoyas98
January 12, 2010, 05:00 PM
If you're going small round, get the 5.45 Saiga. Ammo is ridiculously cheap, you can store twice as much for the same cost....

Art Eatman
January 12, 2010, 05:01 PM
.223 ammo? Inside 100 yards, anything that's reliable will work just fine. Me, I'd pick something like 55-grain soft points, just for meannness. I've noticed that they do bad things inside coyotes and jackrabbits.

Conall
January 12, 2010, 05:08 PM
I have also considered 5.45..
I'm worried I'd buy a crap load of that ammo, then find out it doesn't have the air pocket.
Maybe not an issue with the corrosive ammo, but that stuff worries me..

paintballdude902
January 12, 2010, 05:23 PM
5.45 just over 100bucks for 1080rnds


im in the process of saving for one

lobo9er
January 12, 2010, 05:42 PM
Its legal to hunt with 7.62x39 and not 5.56 for a reason. I also dont think you will be able to take advantage of the accuracy of the 5.56 in a AK platform. So you will be paying almost double in ammo for nothing. AR15 5.56 AK 7.62X39.

Conall
January 12, 2010, 06:04 PM
I don't intend to hunt with the rifle, so whether or not it is legal to hunt with 5.56 is insignificant.
I've searched the forums, and 5.56 Saigas are apparently fairly accurate, more so than the 7.62 variant.

Only jamming problems I've read about were caused by the magazines, which probably wouldn't be a problem for me since I'd buy Surefires.
Oh, and there are in fact 5.45x39 Saigas available.

One more question..
I've searched around the forums and Google already, but got a lot of different results..
What are the most popular parts people are using for the conversion?

iyaoyas98
January 12, 2010, 06:09 PM
To be honest, SHTF, under 100 yards. Saiga 12. It makes good people do bad things. :evil:

Cheap - Tapco it out.

More - Kvar.

Conall
January 12, 2010, 06:22 PM
I'm going to stick with a rifle.

I can't say anything about the S12, but I do know that ANY shotgun makes me and my friend do bad things.
There was an old gutted building in the woods near his old home..
We blew that sucker all to hell with about 200 12 gauge shells in 2 hours.
Good times.

RockyMtnTactical
January 12, 2010, 06:24 PM
I have heard the 5.56 AK don't have the reliablilty as the 7.62x39 due to the cartridge taper of the necking.

The difference is so small that it shouldn't even be part of the consideration either way.

GRIZ22
January 12, 2010, 06:29 PM
I have a 223/5.56 Saiga that has been 100% reliable for several years. For a SHTF rifle I think you are better off with that caliber being in use by our military and most law enforcement than a 7.62x39 or 5.45x39 for ammo availability if nothing else.

Conall
January 12, 2010, 06:32 PM
Yeah, that's another reason why I'm interested in 5.56.
Though, honestly, it shouldn't be a problem regardless of which caliber I choose..
I plan on hoarding a LOT of ammo.

M1key
January 12, 2010, 07:16 PM
Saigas in 223 are inaccurate? Guess someone forgot to tell this guy...:rolleyes:

christcorp
January 12, 2010, 07:33 PM
In the saiga; all calibers are reliable and dependable. As or which caliber for SHTF scenarios; you should get the 5.56/223. Why, pray tell, you may ask. Simple.... .223/5.56 is an extremely available, local, american, caliber. Not that some companies in the USA don't make 7.62x39, just that there's a lot more .223 locally. Some will say that the x39 ammo is so cheap that you can buy plenty of it and store it. Yes, that's correct. But in a true life SHTF scenario, you won't necessarily going to be able to carry all your ammo with you if you have to relocate. So; if you bring the mags with you that you can carry, then that's about all the ammo you will have. When you get to wherever you're going, it will be a lot easier to find .223 than x39. Plus, .223 is much lighter than x39, so you'll be able to carry more of it.

Then there's the social break down system where local law enforcement and/or government agencies may call upon you for assistance. (Don't say that's unlikely; it happened to my father, uncle, and grandfather during the race riots of the 60's). The took turns (ARMED) in our town in New Jersey, patrolling and protecting businesses and local communities against looting and similar acts. And our local police department provided ammo to my dad, uncle, and grandfather for guns they owned. "Assuming it was a caliber they had in stock". In such a situation, law enforcement, military, guard, etc... will have a lot more .223 available. I work with the Highway Patrol. And I've had this conversation with their Colonel. (Commander of the State Highway Patrol). And he affirmed that asking citizens to help in certain scenarios is NOT unreasonable of a possibility. And .223 is much more available than x39.

It's also at walmart and normal chain stores. It's also about the same price as x39, so financially it's not even a benefit to get the x39. And as for hunting, and it being legal to hunt with, that's just play silly. In NON-SHTF day to day life; if you're a hunter, then you have hunting rifles. Probably a 30-30, 30-06, 7mm magnum, or whatever. In a REAL SHTF scenario; who the hell cares about the laws. If you're in the hills, and you're hungry, and you shoot a rabbit or deer with your .223; do you really think someone going to prosecute you for using an illegal cartridge. Forget the fact that you probably don't even have a hunting license on that day anyway. And in a REAL SHTF scenario where I'm living off the land; my #1 survival rifle is a 22LR Rifle. It will take care of me dearly.

So; there is no question that the .223/5.56 is the way to go over the 7.62x39. Availability is the number one reason. Not what you can buy and store today. But what you can buy/trade/steel/get in the future when you CAN'T carry those 5000 rounds of x39 with you when you have to leave. Don't get me wrong. I have a LOT of ammo. More than I can carry, or probably use. But in a REAL SHTF scenario; I also plan on TRADING some of that ammo. Just like I have more guns than I will ever need use. I will be trading/selling those in a "REAL" SHTF scenario. People will need/want guns and ammo 2nd ONLY to food and shelter. They will need a means of protecting what they do have. So I'll probably have sold off all my extra ammo and guns prior to leaving, if I have to leave. Definitely take the .223. And don't worry about the dependability/reliability of the saiga. It's good in all calibers.

19-3Ben
January 12, 2010, 07:35 PM
In the end it comes down to the caliber wars that you can read pages and pages about. 5.56nato and x39 are compared all the time. It's like asking if you should go with a 1911 or a Glock. It's sure to start a war. Go read up on each cartridge.

I'd go with 7.62 honestly.
I'm old fashioned. If I have to stop someone, I wanna put 30 caliber holes in 'em.
If you plan to hoard ammo, the x39 is about $200-220 for 1k rounds.
Best price I can find for 1k rounds of 5.56 is about $340.

I too am an ammo hoarder. Price is what won me over when I was looking into it. I run x39 as my common shtf rifle caliber.

christcorp
January 12, 2010, 07:44 PM
It's not a "Caliber War". This thread is SPECIFICALLY a SHTF thread. Any other thread; we can have a caliber war. If you care about a SHTF rifle, and you're choosing between the .223/5.56 and the 7.62x39; the .223/5.56 wins without a fight. I'm glad that ben's a hoarder of ammo. But what good is that going to do you when you have to pack up and leave. You'll leave most of that ammo behind. You take the amount of ammo that you can carry. if you can't carry 1000-5000 rounds, then it's useless to have that much for a SHTF scenario. I have that much; but it's for normal day to day shooting/plinking. For a SHTF scenario, I keep about 300 rounds (10 mags) of black rifle; and similar 5-10 mags of each pistol that I'll be carrying. As well as my wife and daughter each having a pistol with about 100 rounds. But when I get to where I'm going, I want a caliber that I can find ammo. I stick with 357/38; 45acp; .223/5.56; 9mm, 22LR, and 12 gauge. If I get to stay in my house, I will have a lot more available. If I have to leave, or the time seems right, I will sell and trade off all my other guns/calibers.

19-3Ben
January 12, 2010, 08:04 PM
I can see your point. I really can.

I wouldn't say that .223 wins"without a fight" though. that seems a tad much. Each round has it's ups and downs.

It's sweet that the po-po gave your father and grandfather ammo while they patroled the town. If I were called in to help the cops, I'd just bring my own. It's really not that big a deal.
I do understand that the point of the story was illustrative. it was to make the point that cops are more likely to have .223 on hand. That's fine.

I'll still stick by x39. Plenty of people have plenty of the stuff. It's not like it's suddenly going to disappear. It's one of the most common rifle calibers along with 30-30, .223, .30-06, and .308. Someone's gonna have it.

But yes, 5.56 will be easier to get from the cops. But cops are not the only source of ammo. Not by a long shot.
So 5.56 has a LOT going in its favor. but I wouldn't say that it wins "without a fight."

lobo9er
January 12, 2010, 08:26 PM
Its when dirt gets in your rifle would you notice the reliability differences between 5.56 and 7.62x39. I have never had a handful of dirt thrown in any of my rifles so I have never had a problem either. But if hes out in the woods after a alien attack and his rifle falls in the mud he may be better off with the caliber that has proven reliability with the AK. 5.56 does not have the resume that 7.62x39 has. So if he's going for solely shtf a rifle + a case of 7.62X39 is my vote.

Winchester '94 kept alot of folks alive too. just throwing that out there.

FMJMIKE
January 12, 2010, 08:31 PM
My SHTF Saiga is a K-var SGL-21 in 7.62 X 39........... The muzzle break really dampens the recoil...............:evil:
http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e350/mbmphoto/AK103a.jpg

jdc1244
January 12, 2010, 08:56 PM
It's not a "Caliber War". This thread is SPECIFICALLY a SHTF thread.

Indeed - and I think some may be confusing ‘TEOTWAWKI’ with ‘SHTF.’

SHTF is real here on the Gulf Coast, not a Red Dawn fantasy. If a ‘cane comes through we’ve got no power – or LEO – for a week, maybe two. That’s SHTF. Ammo availability won’t be an issue, I’ve got plenty of that - which is why my AK is x39.

black_powder_Rob
January 12, 2010, 09:23 PM
+1 on what jdc1244 said
to op any one of the rounds that the saiga is chambered for will work out to 100yds. and closer.

nipprdog
January 12, 2010, 09:28 PM
Saigas in 223 are inaccurate? Guess someone forgot to tell this guy

Well, he did miss the target by 3".

:neener:

Conall
January 12, 2010, 10:15 PM
I've done a lot of reading about 5.56x45 and 7.62x39 and their effectiveness.
A lot of people keep saying go for the 7.62 due to the larger bullet, but it seems 5.56 M193 ammunition, the type I would be using, can be just as deadly.

This is a wound profile for 5.56 M193;
http://www.firearmstactical.com/images/Wound%20Profiles/M193.jpg

And another for 7.62x39;
http://www.firearmstactical.com/images/Wound%20Profiles/AK-47%20762x39mm.jpg

The 5.56 may be smaller, but I sure as hell wouldn't want to get hit by one of em.

@ FMJMIKE
That's a fine rifle.
If they weren't so overpriced, I'd pick one up myself.
Seems Arsenal AKs have shot way up in price since I bought that SLR-95 a few years ago.

I paid $563 for it used on gunbroker with wooden furniture and a 30 round mag.
I see them selling now for around $1000.

GRIZ22
January 12, 2010, 10:43 PM
Saigas in 223 are inaccurate? Guess someone forgot to tell this guy...

Mine shoots 2-3" at 100 yd. Not as good as an AR but far from "inaccurate".

my762buzz
January 13, 2010, 12:21 AM
... but it seems 5.56 M193 ammunition, the type I would be using, can be just as deadly.

That chart may be true for FMJ but once you start talking expanding/fragmenting bullets the 7.62x39 edges out the .223 in terminal performance.
Yep, its true 7.62x39 is quite different once you get away from FMJ.

Here is a comparison of 7.62x39 FMJ , then Wolf HP, Military Classic HP, and finally Double Tap versus water juggs.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGB5YB9f15Q

M1key
January 13, 2010, 12:31 AM
QUOTE:Well, he did miss the target by 3". :neener:

my762buzz
January 13, 2010, 12:38 AM
QUOTE:Well, he did miss the target by 3". :neener:
That is AKSarBen proving how inaccurate a saiga .223 is with handloads.
I guess he might as well give up trying to prove how no one can hardly do better than 3-6 MOA no matter the ammo quality. He might as well concede that Wolf Ammo is as good as it gets, NOT.:D

nathan
January 13, 2010, 01:02 AM
As long u hit the target, thats what counts. I would pick any but right now i like the 5.45. Its so light recoiling and i can hit the target easily . Dont know why from my AK 74.

iyaoyas98
January 13, 2010, 01:32 AM
Since we want to go into caliber wars....

.308. Military and law enforcment use it, and it is one of the most popular hunting rounds of all time.
The gas station by my house sells it, and if it doesn't take care of the problem in the front yard, I need a RPG.

Conall
January 13, 2010, 03:01 AM
@ my762buzz
Sure, a good hollow point x39 might be more lethal than 5.56, but I think you'll agree a well fragmenting M193 is still lethal enough.
I'm still feeling that the smaller round might be the better choice, especially considering the other advantages 5.56 has over x39.
Lighter, less recoil, possibly more accurate, greater ammunition availability..

@ nathan
I've seen videos of 5.45 AKs in action, and am amazed at how little muzzle climb there is..
Still, unless you're using ammunition with the air pocket or are one hell of a shot, I figure you'd have to put far too many rounds into a target to take it down with 5.45.
There seems to be plenty of milsurp 5.45 around right now which has the air pocket, but it being corrosive worries me.
I've never fired any corrosive ammo, and have no idea just how bad the effects would be without cleaning over a long period.

@ iyaoyas98
.308.. no thanks.
x39 is about the highest I'd go for a .30 caliber autoloader.

my762buzz
January 13, 2010, 04:01 AM
@ my762buzz
Sure, a good hollow point x39 might be more lethal than 5.56, but I think you'll agree a well fragmenting M193 is still lethal enough.
I'm still feeling that the smaller round might be the better choice, especially considering the other advantages 5.56 has over x39.
Lighter, less recoil, possibly more accurate, greater ammunition availability..



Yes, M193 is lethal no doubt. The fragmenting nature ends when the velocity drops between 2700-2500 fps.

PAPACHUCK
January 13, 2010, 06:27 AM
I bought a Saiga in 308 and converted it using Dinzag internals and K-Var furniture. It was a fun experience. Not hard at all for most people to do, and it teaches you how your rifle is built. And you end up with a real, brand new, Russian-built, AK.

For the OP's stated usage, the caliber choice is open. All will work.

I could probably be talked into 5.45x39 since the ammo is soooo cheap right now.

My 21" Saiga 308;

http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h11/PAPACHUCK/DSCN0023.jpg

Git-U-1 and have some fun!

Conall
January 13, 2010, 03:49 PM
@ my762buzz
I'm aware of that, which is why I said a well fragmenting M193

I've been doing a lot of thinking..
5.56 may be plentiful.. but I reckon most of what you'd find in a worst case scenario would be normal .223 as opposed to M193 or M855, unless you sought out the corpses of police/military personnel, assuming there are any and they have 5.56 on them.
So, there goes the advantage of 5.56.. at least in my mind.
Sure, I could stock up on thousands of rounds of M193, but really.. who could carry that much with them?

And as I've already said, I won't be buying a .308 for SHTF.
Ammo is much more expensive(At least for anything worth a damn), heavier, has more recoil..
Try to imagine getting into a firefight while using a .308, and not being able to use your hearing protection.
Now, I know x39 and 5.56 are both very loud themselves, but there is no denying .308 is louder.

I imagine most people wouldn't keep standing after being shot by either x39 or .308.
I couldn't take full advantage of the extra range with that round, anyway.
I want to keep the rifle as compact as possible, so I won't be using a scope.

iyaoyas98
January 13, 2010, 04:00 PM
While I've recommended everything but the x39, it's my go to. I have 3 AK's chambered in it and more ammo then both of us would want to carry. I've never shot anything with a x39, but the ballistics are similar to a 30-30, and I've never had to track a deer or shoot it twice. ;)

lobo9er
January 13, 2010, 04:19 PM
.223 Aren't inaccurrate but with the AK platform you cannot take advantage the accurracy potential. so why spend more money on the 5.56 ammo when your shot groups are going to be much like 7.62x39? Unless you already have rifles chambered for 5.56 I don't see the point. Just my .02 and its worth what you paid 0.00. If your starting fresh and its only shtf go cheap. 5.45 is mucho cheap right now.

darkknight
January 13, 2010, 08:20 PM
Here's what I think your overlooking. U can use 5.45,5.56,308, or 7.62x39 and they will all do the job if you do your. A shot that misses the cns on someone is not gonna drop them. Even if there hit with 50 bmg or 12 guage slug and u miss the cns they won't just keel over sorry that's a tv misconception. So get a gun you feel comfortable with and can shoot well with. And the only way to become profecient with any gun is to fire rounds downrange with some frequency.
I'll admit it I would be more scared of farmer john who has shot nothing but 30-30 his whole life and killed deer year after year. Then I would be of a thug or mall ninja who just grabbed an ak/ar and started shooting.firearms are all about profeciancy. So that is a selling point for 5.45. U can practice cheaply and fire more rounds downrange then any of the other calibers.

Yes its corrosive if its ur shtf gun your firearm is going to get cleaned when u have the opportunity to. How many world war 2 guns are still used today by people. A lot. And guess what they used corrosive ammo and there just fine. Your gun will be treated in such a manner that its never been before. It will be exposed to the elements day in and out. Life won't just be running gun battle after running gun battle and if it is. Guess what you won't be around for long. Because how many gun battles will it take before your luck runs out. Your better off avoiding all conflicts. Because that will keep u alive much much longer. Fight when u have too.

So don't buy into the magazine hype on diffrent calibers. They all work just fine. Your little 22 will do the job if you do yours. Yes some have perks others don't. A 308 will punch through more and carry on farther. 223 will be the most accurate depending on platform. X39 will have more punch than 556. 545 will be the cheapest for the time being. Its all tradeoffs pick the one you want and stop worrying about the rest and then go and become proficent.
My choice at this point is 223, x39 cause that's what I have. I'll equip friends and family who don't have any with my weapons. But I'm also going to get a 308 and 545. Why cause I want to.and if the day comes and I need to choose ill pick that day, any of them will do there job with proper shot placement.


So pick the saiga you want and go have fun with it and become profecient.

-v-
January 13, 2010, 08:44 PM
I'd choose a caliber that as many of my friends have as possible. If one gun is good, three friends with guns in the same caliber as yours is even better. I know I can rely on at least three other people in a SHTF situation to hole up and be secured, and all pack 7.62x39 with many many many rounds of ammo stored for a rainy day. Bugging out is good, bugging in is also an option. But, whether you bug out or bug in, bring a friend, bring two friends, bring as many friends as possible, in fact.

Conall
January 13, 2010, 11:16 PM
@ darkknight
I've already thought about everything you mentioned.

@ -v-
Thought of that, too.
Actually, I intend on buying another rifle in the same caliber later on for a good friend of mine.

I've finally come to a decision.
I already have several years of experience with 7.62x39 AKs, so I will be buying a Saiga in that caliber.
Ammunition may not be as common as 5.56, but I'll be able to carry enough to get by.
If I ever ran low, chances are I would've picked up another weapon or two by that time.

Now that's settled, I just need to know exactly what parts I need to do the conversion.
I've looked around and different websites say different things.
So, what's the truth? What will I need?
Edit: Nevermind. I know what to do now.

iyaoyas98
January 14, 2010, 09:41 AM
If I was searching for a good deal on a Saiga I'd probably start at -

http://forum.saiga-12.com/index.php?showforum=42?

bk1
January 14, 2010, 11:10 PM
Here is a good source for a good deal on a saiga:
http://www.centerfiresystems.com/SAI-762.aspx

Ughh
January 15, 2010, 02:11 PM
5.45 just over 100bucks for 1080rnds


im in the process of saving for one
Really? 5.45x39 is that cheap?? It seems cheaper than 7.62x39 from what your saying.

Also, what does is SHTF stand for?

Ughh
January 15, 2010, 02:49 PM
5.56 is great, only if you achieve that same velocity in the wound profile will you get the same results. It's the velocity that that makes that little .223 tumble and create such a permanent cavity.

In terms of effectiveness, i think the 7.62 will put u on your ass with its kinetic energy and higher grain, as the 5.56 will more likely incapacitate you faster as you bleed out faster. And if value and availability is negligible--not that 7.62 is not available, i think it's everywhere--I'd go 5.56.

Better trajectory/accuracy, lower recoil for easier follow up shots.

malix
January 15, 2010, 03:08 PM
Also, what does is SHTF stand for?

Silly Hypothetical Tacticool Fantasy? :p

Actually its for s**t hitting the fan. A total breakdown in law and order, which for whatever reason is a major preoccupation with some folks.

lobo9er
January 15, 2010, 06:15 PM
Silly Hypothetical Tacticool Fantasy
word

19-3Ben
January 15, 2010, 06:30 PM
Now that's settled, I just need to know exactly what parts I need to do the conversion.
I've looked around and different websites say different things.
So, what's the truth? What will I need?

What do you need? You don't need anything. You don't need the conversion at all to have a very functional, and highly effective rifle. In sporting config, the Saiga is just as effective as it is in standard AK config.
It's only esthetics.

FMJMIKE
January 15, 2010, 07:17 PM
Part of the reason for the Legendary AK reliability is the rifle cartridge case. The 5.45 X 39 and 7.62 X 39 rifle cases are tapered. This allows for easier extraction of a round as compared to a non-tapered cartridge case. Less friction on a tapered case. So....a .223/5.56 may not be as reliable as its Russian cousins........:)

Hammerhead6814
January 15, 2010, 07:22 PM
Anyone who says .223 Saiga's are inaccurate need to google search "AKSarben". He'll prove you wrong.

Conall
January 15, 2010, 10:40 PM
I've read a few things from several years ago that state Wolf 60 grain 5.45 ammunition does in fact have the air pocket..
Can anyone here confirm this is still true?

Ughh
January 16, 2010, 05:02 AM
Silly Hypothetical Tacticool Fantasy? :p

Actually its for s**t hitting the fan. A total breakdown in law and order, which for whatever reason is a major preoccupation with some folks.
Tacticool, lol

Mr.510
January 16, 2010, 06:26 AM
If you are converting a Saiga for a "survival" situation I suggest you stay away from collapsible stocks and anything made by Tapco except their trigger group. If you want a folding stock go with either an underfolder or an Ace. Nothing else even comes close. Let the mall ninjas have all the plastic junk from Crapco and the like. Wood furniture is the best by far if you don't want a folder.

FWIW: My go-to rifle is a converted 16" Saiga .308 with Ace folder. It'll put the hurt on anything up to, and including, large diesel engines. :cool:

Ohio Gun Guy
January 16, 2010, 10:55 AM
PAPACHUCK...

I like your rifle, I considered a 20" .308 siaga. Have you seen anyone make them look like a PSL?

Ughh
January 16, 2010, 02:21 PM
If you are converting a Saiga for a "survival" situation I suggest you stay away from collapsible stocks and anything made by Tapco except their trigger group. If you want a folding stock go with either an underfolder or an Ace. Nothing else even comes close. Let the mall ninjas have all the plastic junk from Crapco and the like. Wood furniture is the best by far if you don't want a folder.

FWIW: My go-to rifle is a converted 16" Saiga .308 with Ace folder. It'll put the hurt on anything up to, and including, large diesel engines. :cool:
Why not tapco? I just found out about this brand a couple weeks ago and it looks good.

what's a good underfolder brand then for the Saiga?
Ak 47 butt stocks don't work for Saigas right??

DMK
January 16, 2010, 02:30 PM
I suggest you stay away from collapsible stocks and anything made by Tapco except their trigger group. If you want a folding stock go with either an underfolder or an Ace. Nothing else even comes close.Romanian, East german or Polish sidefolders work better than underfolders in my opinion. These sidefolders are uber strong, they have a cam that takes up any wear so they lock tight and are completely interchangable with a fixed stock (just two screws).

http://mysite.verizon.net/dmk0210/myarms/sar1folded.jpg
Romanian sidefolder on my SAR1

DMK
January 16, 2010, 02:32 PM
Why not tapco? I just found out about this brand a couple weeks ago and it looks good.
TAPCO is OK, but not top drawer as far as quality. Their pistol grips and fixed stocks are probably fine durability wise. Their G2 trigger kits are certainly popular and seem to work fine. The folding stocks are all plastic and may not hold up to severe use.

what's a good underfolder brand then for the Saiga?You can't just attach an underfolder to a receiver that had a fixed stock. You need to replace the rear trunnion (riveted in) and cut new holes in the sides of the receiver for the hinges.

Ak 47 butt stocks don't work for Saigas right?? An AK47, AKM or AK74 fixed stock will work. A Romanian sidefolder will fit. The Saiga receiver is a regular AKM.

The sidefolders for AK74s and AK-100 series won't for the same reasons that underfolders won't.

cz85cmbt
January 16, 2010, 05:21 PM
I can't see getting one in either 5.45 or 5.56. For the price of the gun plus the conversion you are almost at the price of an AR kit gun. Then if you don't like AK sights, I know I don't, you're looking to flop at least 150 down on an optic setup or 110 for the tech sights. A 7.62x39 here in the east will nearly all game you will come in contact with and has much better barrier penetration than an AR. For me I would get a 7.62 buy the high cap magazines made for the saiga and not convert, yes this IS legal. Three or four mags would be plenty, and I personally like the feel of the sporter grip, it's easier to put down pressure on the rifle to control muzzle rise.

christcorp
January 16, 2010, 06:01 PM
I have to disagree with not recommending the Tapco T-6 collapsible stock. One of the things I didn't like about my traditional M-16 rifle was the fixed stock. Temperature ranges changed a lot during the day when I had to use that rifle in real life. Depending if I was just wearing a shirt, flack jacket, coat, etc... it was sometimes difficult to get the right feel and control. With the tapco t-6, I can adjust it wear I want with the push of a button. Whether I'm wearing a t-shirt or a full winter coat. Granted, it's Poly and maybe not the best in the world. But I'll never go back to a fixed stock. Doesn't matter if it's wooden or plastic. And I'll never use a side folding stock. I've never liked them at all. I put a tapco T-6 on my Saiga and couldn't be happier. I'm already looking into what other rifles they make stocks for.

And as far as the price of having a 5.56 saiga and doing the conversion being the same price as an AR kit gun..... Well, that's simply not an accurate statement. Can it be? Sure. I could also spend $500 more on any gun. But this isn't like being PREGNANT where "You ARE, or You're NOT". There's a lot of middle ground here. Call it converting, call it modifying, call it whatever you want. My who "Conversion" cost a total of $60. And I have no desire to spend hundreds more on it. And as far as the sights go, that is strictly personal. Because I hate the sights on an AR-15 also; so I'd spend money to put in something different there too. You need to compare apples with apples. The saiga in 5.56/.223 is a fantastic rifle. You aren't going to get any better bang for the buck. And YOU get to choose what you want to change on it; if anything. And it can be as cheap as $10. So saying a conversion will cost the same as an AR kit is simply misleading. It doesn't have to cost anything near that. Now; if you want your saiga to be some sort of sport or competition rifle, then you can definitely spend a lot of money on it. My saiga is for 3 purposes and only 3. 1) Plinking/fun; 2) Shooting varmints; and 3) Shooting people if needed to. And the saiga will do all of those things perfectly. And mine does it chambered in 5.56.

Conall
January 16, 2010, 10:21 PM
I have to agree with christcorp about the Tapco T6 stock.
I bought one for my old SLR-95 and loved it.

@ DMK
I hadn't actually considered that sort of side folder.
Looks good.. any idea where I could buy one?

Heck
January 17, 2010, 12:26 AM
I have been debating on a Saiga in .223. I have seen an adapter that allows you to run AR magazines in it. Anyone know if you still have to install the bullet guide when using the adapter and AR mags? I am thinking a converted Saiga that can run on my stash of Pmags and .223 would be awesome. Heck, I could sell my AR and buy and convert two if them.

christcorp
January 17, 2010, 12:40 AM
If you buy the AR magazine adapter from Renegade; then you don't need a bullet guide. Not sure about MSA. But from all the research I've done on renegade and MSA's AR magazine adapter; definitely go with Renegade's. His require very little adapting to the saiga. The MSA seems to require a lot more "Machining". After researching all of Renegade's instructions and explanations, any required changing to get his adapter to work properly would take about 15-30 minutes and a dremmel. Go to the saiga sight or google "renegade saiga ar magazine adapter".

PAPACHUCK
January 17, 2010, 06:32 AM
[quote] by Ohio Gun Guy
PAPACHUCK...

I like your rifle, I considered a 20" .308 siaga. Have you seen anyone make them look like a PSL? [quote]

Thanks for the compliment. I like it a lot also. I had considered at first getting a Dragonov style wood stock, but I really like the OD.

benEzra
January 17, 2010, 09:16 AM
Another consideration is weight. Loaded 7.62x39mm mags weigh roughly two pounds each loaded; three loaded spare mags together weigh roughly as much as the whole dang rifle. On the upside, the mags are practically indestructible, and the mag bodies and feed lips should last for generations.

If I were going to get a second AK, I would probably look into 5.56x45 or 5.45x39, myself. I really like my 7.62x39mm (and shoot USPSA with it), but it gets heavy if you are carrying more than a couple of magazines.

DMK
January 17, 2010, 10:06 AM
@ DMK
I hadn't actually considered that sort of side folder.
Looks good.. any idea where I could buy one? They pop up now and then.

Centerfire systems has an Romanian AK parts kit for $109 that includes the sidefolder. They may also have the stock sold separately.

Try one of these places:

www.centerfiresystems.com

http://dpharms.com/ak47ak47furniture-c-61_27.html

http://www.copesdistributing.net/

Deer Hunter
January 17, 2010, 10:44 AM
Just to stir the pot...

This is my Saiga. I have a 4x POSP scope that it occasionally sees.

http://i180.photobucket.com/albums/x91/Captain_Kennedy/P7190057.jpg

doc2rn
January 17, 2010, 10:49 AM
I have a WASR-3 in 5.56 and even with the awful front sight I can get it out to 250m.
That said I would opt for the 7.62 just for the better bullet.

The King of Pants
January 17, 2010, 06:53 PM
Just to stir the pot...

This is my Saiga. I have a 4x POSP scope that it occasionally sees.
http://i180.photobucket.com/albums/x91/Captain_Kennedy/P7190057.jpg



Hell-oh! Who's magwell is that on your rifle? What did it set you back? How smooth was the install and how well do you like it's functionality?

-v-
January 17, 2010, 07:33 PM
Looks to be a magnolia state armory adapter. As I recall, you need to do some minor fitting to get it installed.

Wanta B
January 17, 2010, 08:26 PM
Yes please do tell!!

Deer Hunter
January 17, 2010, 08:38 PM
The MSA adapter of mine was reviewed here.

http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=465542

Over at Saiga 12 forums There is a big discussion about it.

Hammerhead6814
January 17, 2010, 08:43 PM
Must... buy... MSA adapter. Must stop being so damn broke!

wally
January 17, 2010, 08:54 PM
I've a lot of AK variations and only the 5.56x45 have issues -- its always the mags. There is no standardization on the .223 mags like for the 7.62x39 and 5.45x39.

When you convert a Saiga in .223 all can be made to work if you start with good mags and fit them right but don't bet on multiple gun interchange, but the Galil mags or K-Var circle-10 mags aren't cheap. The AR mag conversion is expensive and a lot more work, but would be the way to go if you want a lot of mags.

If you don't mind corrosive ammo, get a 5.45, swap out enough parts for 922 compliance and stock up on $12-15 AK-74 mags and surplus ammo -- $150/1000 is rally hard to beat and its very good shooting ammo -- really makes water filled 2-liter bottles jump!

But overall, I prefer the AK in 7.62x39.

--wally.

Deer Hunter
January 17, 2010, 09:04 PM
My Saiga, as it looks in that picture, cost me right at $450. ;) I sold all my Galil mags for around $100 bucks and now I pick up AR mags for 10 dollars a piece.

In my opinion, the adapter pays for itself.

Col. Plink
January 17, 2010, 09:19 PM
First and foremost I need info on trigger disassembly directions for a Saiga 308 VER 21. Have the thing 1/2 apart and can't find thorough disassembly instructions.

I am replacing the trigger on my Saiga 308 with a Tapco G single hook and don't think it needs modifications (please tell me if it does).

Hoping you guys might help if you see this. Thanks!

cornman
January 17, 2010, 11:10 PM
Why is a .308 Saiga $175 more than a 7.62?

Col. Plink
January 17, 2010, 11:45 PM
They're both 7.62

Anyone know how to take down a Saiga 308 v.21 trigger group? Thanks?

Conall
January 18, 2010, 03:45 PM
Does the Saigas hand guard have a heat shield?

M1key
January 18, 2010, 03:46 PM
No heat shield...you can cut slots to ventilate it, however.

Conall
January 29, 2010, 01:49 PM
I cheated.
Found a gorgeous Arsenal SGL-20 on Gunbroker that has custom fitted wooden furniture, and bought it.
Once it arrives, I'm going to install a G2 and polymer pistol grip with finger grooves.
I know, I know, it'd have been cheaper to buy a Saiga and convert it.. but what can I say? I couldn't resist.

Dr.Mall Ninja
January 29, 2010, 02:05 PM
Nice looking rifle.

ECVMatt
January 29, 2010, 10:20 PM
Conall,

That is a great rifle!!! You will love it...

I just picked up a regular Saiga 7.62x39 yesterday and am really impressed so far. I am going to take it out to the desert to ring it out this weekend. I hope it shoots as good as it looks.

Congrats...

shotgunsrfun
January 29, 2010, 10:22 PM
get 7.62x39 so you can install a bullet guide so it will accept surplus ak47mags. Also when you convert you much follow 992R compliance!

sarduy
January 30, 2010, 12:22 AM
just get a cheap wasr-10 and forget about the rest....

or..

you can go to cmmg website and get a bargain bin AR15 for around $600

or...

order a del-ton kit for $480 and a reciever and build it yourself.

Conall
January 30, 2010, 09:16 PM
I've handled a WASR in the past, and I was not impressed.
I had the money, so why would I want to buy a low quality AK made from old, used parts when a high quality brand new AK is available?

And I have no intention of ever buying an AR.
For me, the AK is perfect, offering everything I want in a SHTF rifle.
I can't say the same about the AR.

Lloyd Smale
January 31, 2010, 07:47 AM
in a true shtf situation id about bet a dime to a dollar that before you got to shoot off a hundred rounds of ammo youd probably be dead anyway. If you think your going to stay alive by running around shooting your gun your sadly mistaken. You will be hiding (at least if you have any sense) and will not want to advertise where your at by blazing away with your gun. It will be used to defend yourself from intruders and that will probably mean a few rounds. Im one of the idiots that stock piles ammo for a shtf senerio and probably have so much my truck would sag if i loaded it all in there but in all reality its more of a security blanket then anything. A man with any gun and a 100 rounds of ammo is going to last a long time if he wants to stay alive.

Conall
February 10, 2010, 01:05 AM
Picked up the rifle today, and it looks even better in person.
Looks and feels better than my previous AK, an SLR-95 seen in the below photo.
http://img518.imageshack.us/img518/9599/slr95061eh.jpg
Looked like this when I bought it;
http://img125.imageshack.us/img125/233/slr9515qd.jpg
It had walnut furniture with a NATO length buttstock, which I find unpleasant.
I replaced the wood with what you see in the first picture, something I will NOT be repeating with my new AK.
The wood the previous owner installed is absolutely beautiful, and the buttstock is Warsaw Pact length, making it very comfortable for me.

The grip was plastic already, so I replaced it with another grip like the one seen in the first photo, and also installed a G2 trigger.
Haven't got to shoot it yet, but I'm sure looking forward to it.

Interestingly, the retainer pin had been installed backwards..
Took me a little while to figure out what was wrong.
Just had to push the front end of it down to remove the hammer pin.
Also had a little trouble with the disconnector spring.. you can probably guess what happened.

Other than that, it was a smooth install.
Didn't expect it to be so easy, since I've never done anything like that to a gun before.
I love how simple AKs are.

If you enjoyed reading about "Saiga SHTF Rifle.. 5.56x45, 7.62x39?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!