To "Tac Out" an AK or Not To?


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Mot45acp
August 7, 2011, 01:00 AM
I currently have a Polish 1960 milled AK. It is bone stock with exception of the YHM suppressor mount. I was thinking :uhoh: since it already had the phantom style hider/mount to go ahead and and make it more "tactical" :o

My AK experience is very limited. Talk me into or outta it.

Something along the lines of the MI rail system. Or recomend me a better one.

Something with the stock, it has the tang. Dunno if thats the correct termanology, its the piece at the 12 o' clock that extends off the receiver onto the top of the stock. Dont need folding, or collapsing. I like the short length that came with it for my squared up shooting style. And call me crazy but I thinking plum.

Better grip. The one on it is too small.

Sight. Theyre AK sights. I dont need peep sights but maybe widen the notch to form a "U" instead of the narrow gash. This needs to be done whether the rifle gets "blacked out" or not.

Lastly put a red dot on it. It doesnt have the standard AK side mount. Maybe with above mentioned rail system?

What say you?

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Shadow 7D
August 7, 2011, 01:02 AM
It's your money
I prefer to burn my money in the form of cigarettes.

YMMV

Mike1234567
August 7, 2011, 01:22 AM
I'm keeping my Saigas pretty simple. I just want to convert them with USA parts so I can use higher capacity magazines... move the FCG forward and add pistol grips. Other than that I just want to mount a scope and the side mount will do that... maybe add a bipod. The shotguns may wear a light and laser for HD.

Telekinesis
August 7, 2011, 01:28 AM
I just bought an AK with a mod or two and am thinking of adding some myself.

Mine came with XS Big Dot sights which are a VAST improvement over the standard notch and post sights. It is basically a very large dot (when compared to other front sight posts) and a fairly shallow V rear sight with a line in the center to line it all up. I think for closer work it is much better and easier to pick up, and even out a bit further it can work well. If I were to buy new sights for it, I would get the 24/7 (tritium) instead of just tritium in the front, but that's a minor quibble.

For the stock, Arsenal has a sidefolder that attaches to the fixed stock tang, but its a bit expensive. I'd probably look into one of those Romanian G-Code stocks that seem to be floating around on various sites. I found one with the wood vertical foregrip for about $12 a while ago. The stock seems nice and solid and has a metal but plate on it. It would just be my luck that I ended up with only an underfolder :banghead:

Personally, I wouldn't go with the MI rail. I've found that I don't like vertical foregrips on AKs for some reason. One would also have a greater chance of interfering with mag changes. I do, however, like the Ultimak rail. It's a single rail over the gas tube that replaces the upper handguard and is very secure. You can also put a light on it with an offset mount.

For a red dot sight, I would stick with an Aimpoint. Crazy battery life and great durability. I have heard that EoTechs can sometimes stop working when the gas tube gets hot (depending on the battery type). The most I see are either the CompM4 or the Micro. Just attach it on the Ultimak up front and you should be good to go. I would recommend that you use a QD mount so that you can quickly swap to the irons if something happens to your optic.

Carter
August 7, 2011, 01:37 AM
If it makes it more usable to you then why not. Its your rifle, make it suit your needs. Yes there is pointless crap you could hang off of it for fun, but I'd try to stick to practical upgrades.

GWARGHOUL
August 7, 2011, 01:48 AM
On my SAIGA that I converted, I added a different forearm stock, that has rails, and a UTG scope mount and a scope.

I've left the option open to tac it out, but don't see the need to go any further. But, the rails are there.

If I were going to really tac something out, it would be with a night vision scope.

Breakmyfootoff
August 7, 2011, 02:17 AM
First things first, I say dont worry about what everyone else likes. Your the one that shoots it, if you want to paint it gold and hang "tactical" items on every square inch of it then thats what you should do. I'm not implying that thats what you want to do with it, just that it shouldnt matter. I hate when people get all snobby about others personal preferences. Luckily, most of the people on this forum are really great people, and are pretty considerate of others :)

I took a full round trip on my first AK. Tried a Tapco stock first and didnt like it, so then I bought the full ATI furniture kit. I had that on for about 2 weeks before I decided i didnt like it either, and now its wearing all the stuff that it came with when I first bought it lol. It ended up costing me 150.00 to figure out that I liked it the way it came :banghead:.

My suggestion for optics mounting (based only on research, because I dont have one yet) would be an Ultimak. I'm planning on one of those with some type of red dot sight in the future. The ultimak gives the absolute lowest mounting option, allowing for a lower 3rd co-witness with the stock sights.

Delirious
August 7, 2011, 02:53 AM
Agreeing with what has been said already, it's your money and it's your gun. I think we'll need finished pictures though.

I say do eet!

ugaarguy
August 7, 2011, 03:00 AM
The difference between tac'ing out, and modifying practically is one of intent. You aren't doing it to make it look cool. You've listed practical purposes for wanting to add the parts you list. Therefor, I voted to tac it out, even though I think you're prac'ing it out. Even if you just wanted it to look cool, if you can afford it why not? It's your rifle, do what you want with it.

ElectrikKoolAid
August 7, 2011, 03:10 AM
The AK is designed to be a simple, rugged fighting rifle. Adding a bunch of mall ninja stuff to them adds weight and decreases reliability.

It was made for military use, where killing people at great distances is acceptable conduct. (In civilian life, shooting a burglar that is 300 yards away will get you sent to prison.)

Before I add anything to a gun, I always ask "does it meet a specific need" that I could reasonably expect in it's use as a self-defense weapon?

Will this new device cause me problems, or even work, when I'm half-asleep at 3am dealing with someone in my living room? (A white LED light and a folding stock are all I think are needed in most cases.)

A lot of guys harbor these "Red Dawn" fantasies of fighting off a squadron of invading Chinese soldiers when equipping their guns, but the first attack helicopter that pops up over your neighbor's roofline will permanently end that patriotic daydream.

Fighting a modern army with small arms is just not feasible any more.

(In the 1700s the level of technology employed by the government wasn't much different than what the civilians possessed. Today, whole 'nother story!)

I wouldn't waste money on a bunch of mall ninja stuff myself, YMMV.

ugaarguy
August 7, 2011, 04:00 AM
First you write:
The AK is designed to be a simple, rugged fighting rifle. Adding a bunch of mall ninja stuff to them adds weight and decreases reliability.
Then you write:
Will this new device cause me problems, or even work, when I'm half-asleep at 3am dealing with someone in my living room? (A white LED light and a folding stock are all I think are needed in most cases.)
How do you add a light, and light mount, without adding weight to the rifle?

The OP also wrote:
Better grip. The one on it is too small.

Sight. Theyre AK sights. I dont need peep sights but maybe widen the notch to form a "U" instead of the narrow gash. This needs to be done whether the rifle gets "blacked out" or not.

Lastly put a red dot on it. It doesnt have the standard AK side mount. Maybe with above mentioned rail system?
YMMV, but a better grip, better sights, a hard use red dot (not a toy red dot), and a way to mount the red dot (and maybe even a good light too) are things that would make the rifle easier to use & get hits with at 3am half asleep. If the guy wants to put a new stock on to match or compliment the improved grip & fore end, what's so mall ninja about that?
I wouldn't waste money on a bunch of mall ninja stuff myself, YMMV.
So your upgrades are practical, but the stuff the OP wants to add is Mall Ninja?

amprecon
August 7, 2011, 04:07 AM
I changed up my SLR-95 a little. First off I got rid of that ridiculous thumb-hole stock and with the right number of U.S. made parts, gave it back the traditional AK look. Then I tried the Ultimak picatinny rail with a CompC3 and then the smaller T1, I didn't like either configuration.

So I got rid of the Ultimak mount and put it back to its original configuration. Since I first got into red dot sights I always wanted to put one on the AK, but after the Ultimak rail experience couldn't find a better configuration until Larue Tactical came out with their AK Iron-dot which replaces the rear sight with one that had a Burris FastFire mini red dot attached to it. That seemed to be the perfect combination for the AK.

But when I was able to buy one, Larue Discontinued them. I have recently discovered that Midwest Industries is now offering their version of the mini red dot sight and they make them in several configurations to fit the various mini red dot manufacturers. So I jumped on it. http://www.midwestindustriesinc.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=421

I went with the one that is built for the Leupold DeltaPoint mini red dot. I have yet to put it all together to see how it works, but it does appear to be the way to go if you want a red dot on your AK.
The mini red dot sits back further on the rifle, placing it over the rear top cover.

In case you haven't noticed, I'm a big red dot fan, the diffence that little red dot makes is amazing, not that I didn't shoot well enough before, but in low-light situations it just makes a world of difference, its almost like cheating.

The second modification I made was to add a light mount that attaches to the barrel.

The last modification I made, and its not permanent, was to go with the 20-round Hungarian magazines. It just makes the rifle handier and less obtrusive.

My currently configured SLR-95
http://i860.photobucket.com/albums/ab167/amprecon/Guns/SLR-95.jpg

Example of Larue Tactical's AK Iron-Dot with 20-round magazine
http://i860.photobucket.com/albums/ab167/amprecon/Guns/AK20RD5.jpg

ElectrikKoolAid
August 7, 2011, 04:38 AM
How do you add a light, and light mount, without adding weight to the rifle?
[...]
So your upgrades are practical, but the stuff the OP wants to add is Mall Ninja?

My reference is not to the specific list of items the OP has suggested, none of which sounds unreasonable, if he believes it will aid his realistic intended use of the rifle.

However, we have all seen the monstrosities with 10 linear feet of Piccatiny rail, three different aiming systems, nuclear flashlight with integrated multi-pattern laser/strobe light, four extra mag holders, and a Zippo lighter attached to the forestock. (AR guys are the worst for this.) I cringe anytime I hear the word "tactical" these days.

http://i47.photobucket.com/albums/f157/jeromeian/Forum/zk1smalllight.jpg

I am saying see if it passes the "do I really think I'll need this" and "will it work as planned if SHTF" before adding anything that strays too far from the original intent/design of the rifle. Anything that depends on batteries or adds much weight to a rifle needs special scrutiny to make sure it fits a "need" or is just a "want".

If it takes $2000 in gizmos to get to "tactical" status, you're probably starting from the wrong point. Using a Ferrari to tow a boat, while possible, is better done with an F-150.

The rifle above, while really cool-looking, isn't what you would want during a Hurricane Katrina, or 3am burglar emergency. (I doubt that rifle would even be much good during the proverbial "turning back the invading Red Hoarde" scenario either, but, everyone at the range will be real impressed.)

The AK is light, simple, and rugged that is designed to be abused. I prefer to keep it that way. Others may have different ideas. (Since the OP is asking for opinions, I have presented mine.)

ugaarguy
August 7, 2011, 05:11 AM
I am saying see if it passes the "do I really think I'll need this" and "will it work as planned if SHTF" before adding anything that strays too far from the original intent/design of the rifle. Anything that depends on batteries or adds much weight to a rifle needs special scrutiny to make sure it fits a "need" or is just a "want".
We're on the same page there.
10 linear feet of Piccatiny rail...(AR guys are the worst for this.)Easy there, my screen name is UGA AR Guy. ;) But my M4geries with rifle length railed fore ends only have 51 linear inches (including flat top upper) of Picatinny rail each. :D One came that way from the factory (DDM4V1), and I found liked being able to mount the light forward of the FSB & stretch my support arm out. So, when I very quickly decided that the non-shielded handguards on my M&P-15 Sport had to go, I put a Troy MRF-CX on that one. There's a Surefire G2X on each. The DD is wearing an Aimpoint. I was going to get another Aimpoint for the M&P, but an AK got in the way. :o Ohh, and those AR-15s are pretty darn rugged too. :)

Zach S
August 7, 2011, 05:28 AM
But when I was able to buy one, Larue Discontinued them. I have recently discovered that Midwest Industries is now offering their version of the mini red dot sight and they make them in several configurations to fit the various mini red dot manufacturers.
Dude, you rock. I wanted Larue Iron Dot too, and this is the first I've heard of the MI mounts.

To the OP, My Saiga is pretty simple. I converted it using tapco parts (I hate the sidefolder, feels to flimsy), and added a surefire G2 LED to the stock hand guard using a scope ring. I now plan on adding an MI mount and a Burris FastFire II. Or a Primary Arms MD06...

Rails? We don't need no stinking rails!

It's your money
I prefer to burn my money in the form of cigarettes.
Did you ever start laughing right after taking a drag? It burns... I need to quit.

Ro1911
August 7, 2011, 05:43 AM
ok I've been thinking about this recently to, I just bought an arsenal SLR106fr that a 223 AK and I've decided to add a couple of things, I think that these are reasonable choices that add to the rifle capabilities while also both making it look good, but not mall ninjaesk.

this is the first
146981

this is a vid by a highroad member on this mount.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=motYDaU8cyY

An aimpoint would be second
http://www.mountsplus.com/mm5/graphics/00000001/Aimpoint_CompM2.jpg

and third a vfg
http://media.midwayusa.com/productimages/large/224/224870.jpg

A better pistol grip would be nice to but not neccessary, allthough mine came with a ergo grip and I love it.
http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=146640&d=1312255742

Ro1911
August 7, 2011, 06:04 AM
Is this what you want to do to your rear sight?

before
146982

after
146983

Zach S
August 7, 2011, 06:41 AM
I wish it was feasible for me to add that sidefolder to my Saiga...

Ro1911
August 7, 2011, 06:53 AM
It's probably easier to buy an arsenal that's already got one, but I know what you mean this is the first folder that I really liked, I've had several and the polymer one suck and the underfolders suck less(only bad thing is the folding is a two handed affair) and my second favorite is the wire folder that came on my AK74.

klash545
August 7, 2011, 07:02 AM
i'm so sick of hearing people call **** mall ninja if you add modern features to the AK. seriously. adding a TWS mount,red dot,vfg and an adjustable vastly more comfortable stock is modernizing the rifle not making it into an AR. the AK is fine as is but if someone wants to update it so they can shoot more accurately with it then why the hell not. optics makes it so easy its like cheating.

Zach S
August 7, 2011, 07:04 AM
It's probably easier to buy an arsenal that's already got one
It is, I looked into it a while back...

Sky
August 7, 2011, 07:45 AM
I have not used one of these but sure have been thinking about trying one just because? Picture I saw with red dots installed they co-witnessed. I plan on calling the company to see if the sight will work on an SKS also.

Like has been said before, " It is your rifle do what you want". Part of the gun experience is experimenting with the weapon and finding out what fits you and gives you the warm fuzzes.

The Attero AK Micro Optics Mount is a revolution in design for the AK platform. Finally, a viable way to mount optics on your AK! All other methods of mounting are either too heavy, too ugly, or place the optics too high off of the receiver, making a good cheek weld impossible. The Attero mount replaces the standard rear sight leaf and makes mounting a micro-optic millimeters above the receiver possible. The mount includes an integral white-dot rear sight as well as a replacement white-dot front sight, which allows co-witnessing of the optics and iron sights. Additionally, the mount still allows for easy removal and reattachment of the receiver cover for disassembly and cleaning, yet the mount itself is rock solid and has zero movement. No gunsmithing is required for installation, nor are any permanent modifications needed. The mount is made from aircraft grade aluminum, and then DuraCoated. The mount will work with the following micro optics:

Trijicon RMR
Leupold Deltapoint
Burris Fastfire/Fastfire II
Primary Arms Micro Green Dot Reflex Sight

*See the 'FAQ' page for questions regarding custom mounts.*

$74.99

AK103K
August 7, 2011, 09:40 AM
If youre going to "modernize", then do it with quality and practicality in mind, and avoid all the junk that now seems to abound. Lean to run the gun as it comes, instead of trying to make it something it isnt.

After fooling around with a couple early on, I realized all I really needed was a "good" red dot on a "good" forward mount, and a Russian web sling. Later on, I added a set of Meprolight night sights to a couple. Soon learned I liked them a lot better with just the front sight and stock rear, which is how they are now.

I think the biggest problem here is, people want to try and make their AK into the AR they also over accessorized. Keep it simple, and the gun wont give you trouble. If you use the gun the least bit realistically, start adding junky aftermarket accessories to it, and trust me, you'll soon regret it.

Mot45acp
August 7, 2011, 12:48 PM
I wasnt planning on putting a VFG on it. But the current lower handguard has a brass brad running through it perpendicular to the barrel that gets really hot and will give you a blister if you touch it.

This is not a SHTF fantasy gun. I have others for that :evil: My go-to AR weighs 6.8lbs loaded with Surefire and Acog

I absolutely do not want to affect the durability of the rifle. I'm not wanting a folding stock. I like the short length of the one thats on it. The only reason to change it is to maintain the "lines" of the gun (remember its got a big ugly suppressor hanging off it). Really I want to improve the sights, grip, I was thinking Aimpoint micro or RMR, and maybe mount a light.

I do not want to lose the irons, I like the lower 1/3 co-witness idea.

Keep em comming.

AK103K
August 7, 2011, 01:02 PM
Ive had Aimpoint Comp ML2's on Ultimak rails on a couple of mine since the ML2's were the current Aimpoints. They cowitness with the irons and have never given me a lick of trouble in the years theyve been on there and used.

The newer Aimpoints have been tempting, maybe if one of these ever takes a dump. :)

Ones a Krebs Saiga conversion, the other an old SAR1....

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47b7d700b3127ccec27f61ca596000000010O00CYuWbdo5bsQe3nwk/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47b8d624b3127ccec49fb25824e800000040O00CYuWbdo5bsQe3nwk/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/

Kliegl
August 7, 2011, 01:06 PM
Somebody call Ivan Chesnokov!

Mike1234567
August 7, 2011, 01:19 PM
@ ElectrikKoolAid, et al...

Maybe we need a new term: "Practical Tactical" :D

Mot45acp
August 7, 2011, 02:07 PM
Any ideas on short fixed stock?

gunnutery
August 7, 2011, 02:11 PM
They're so easy to work on. I say go for it. I'm on the iPod right now otherwise I'd post the pics of the one I did.

wally
August 7, 2011, 03:49 PM
I like the Ultimak setup and a red dot low enough to give lower third co-witness. I'm also looking to try this:

http://www.primaryarms.com/product.sc?productId=1759

Midwest industries answer to LaRue's "Iron Dot" which has apparently been discontinued.


As far as other "tactical" stuff goes, its your money, but most folks would be better served spending it on ammo and shooting more.


I've got a few quad rail guns and all I ever use the rails for is to mount a bi-pod or a forward grip -- which I never really warmed up to, although I'm starting to like the MagPul AFG quite a lot.


I don't think AKs benefit much from a scope, but if you got the side rail on your AK, the 4X PSOP scopes are a good place to start and not very expensive.

230therapy
August 7, 2011, 04:00 PM
Aimpoint and UltimAK rail...maybe a trigger job.

sarduy
August 7, 2011, 04:02 PM
i say, keep it simple...

http://inlinethumb57.webshots.com/48120/2115996830095461090S600x600Q85.jpg (http://sports.webshots.com/photo/2115996830095461090ohracT)

or just add a reddot

http://inlinethumb46.webshots.com/41069/2563683820095461090S600x600Q85.jpg (http://sports.webshots.com/photo/2563683820095461090xnKMqM)

briansmithwins
August 9, 2011, 02:42 AM
Here is me with my 'tactical' AK (SLR107FR) I shoot at our local rifle matches.

I don't usually beat the AR shooters at the longer range stuff*, but I can usually get hits faster than many of them on the stages that are under 100 yards.

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-7xJQbQnaRuY/TI0vi8oFe_I/AAAAAAAAAlw/z2mS-bcx_so/IMG_7334Medium.jpg

BSW

*I have gotten hits on 12" plate at 300 yards with that rifle at the match.

Ro1911
August 9, 2011, 02:52 AM
I have a SLR106fr which caliber is is the 107?

Do you use a sling at all, if so I find the position of the rear sling mount awkward, have you done anything with it to make it better (I noticed the paracord on it and was curious)?

briansmithwins
August 9, 2011, 03:40 AM
SLR107FR is the 7.62 with folding stock and optics rail.

The paracord is from when I was running a Israeli rifle sling. That rifle currently has a Blue Force gear sling on it using the rear sling loop and a HK hook for the front.

BSW

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