Looking for a semi-auto rifle....


January 29, 2004, 12:35 AM
....which fits the parameters below.

10 lbs or less loaded with a 20 or 30 rd magazine
.223 remington or 7.62 x 39mm caliber
with decent ammo should be able to maintain 10" groups at 320 yards
reliable even after being temporarily submerged in water
shoots even after being exposed to lotsa mud and moderate amounts of sand
not affected by Canadian winter or Texas summer temps
decent ghost ring sights
should be "bayonet drill" capable (i.e. should be tough)
maximum length 0.90 meters
easily maintained without hand tools
LASTLY, must cost less than $1200.

Any recommendations? :confused:

If you enjoyed reading about "Looking for a semi-auto rifle...." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
January 29, 2004, 01:37 AM
VEPRs probably fit the bill about as well as anything....

I don't know if there is anything out there in 7.62x39 that will readily hold 10" at 320 yards, but if so, the VEPR is probably it. Maybe talk to people with .223 VEPRs and see what kind of accuracy they are getting at that range.

The VEPR is definitley crowding 10 lbs as well. And, does not have ghost ring sights in general, but the KTR model has (I believe) an M16 rear sight mounted on the dust cover. I'm not sure how well that thing would hold a zero though.

Other than those things, its probably as close to your overall description as you are going to get.

January 29, 2004, 07:52 AM
The KTR was immediately popping into my head as I read your description. It doesn't come with a bayo mount, but it is definitely "bayo drill tough." The rifle is a custom build by Krebs, so rest assured, the rear sight is mounted well and holds a zero. It comes in right at your price figure: $1200.

January 29, 2004, 09:43 AM
Ummm, I'm not certain that an AR is short enough, but IMO would be adequate with respects to the rest.

Go ahead, label me a heretic, but in blowing sand and doused in mud, I personally believe the AK is just as poor as the AR. (Tongue firmly in cheek.) There are plenty of places for crud to get into an AK. If it can get in, it will make bad things happen. There are fewer ways to get crud into an AR, but admittedly once in, you're done.

FWIW, I have shot several ARs under pretty bad circumstances (rain, blowing snow and icing, no dust, not a problem in NE) and they run fine. Heck, we once had to brute-force an old SP-1 into operation after the bolt froze. A little light lube, ran for 100 rounds and got cleaned well later that day.

If I may ask, what branch are you serving in to require a weapon to pass such environmental factors?


January 29, 2004, 10:18 AM
Is the KTR rear sight mounted to the reciever, or just the dust cover? I personally don't consider the dust cover a solid enough mounting point for any kind of sight. Mounting sights/optics to either a side rail adapter or a trunion anchored rail is a much better idea. Also, I was under the impression that Robinson did all the modification to the entire line of VEPRs.

Also, an AR will indeed do a better job of meeting many of your parameters... accuracy, range, weight, sights, at least.

I too was wondering what sort of conditions you plan to have the rifle in if you require it to be submerged in water, mud, and sand. Under those conditions, a VEPR probably has a slightly better chance of running, but the best thing to do would be to just avoid outright abuse of the gun if you want to keep it reliable...

January 29, 2004, 10:21 AM
To Nate:

I am a national guardsman in a coastal defense company of an Asian country. I am currently participating in an evaluation exercise to find a suitable rifle to replace the current issue M-16C1s which are showing signs of EXTREME age. Apart from the ability to withstand cold and extreme heat, all the specs required are pretty what was desired in a survey conducted with 1000 active duty and reserve NCOs.

January 29, 2004, 11:39 AM
VEPRs and Saigas

If you enjoyed reading about "Looking for a semi-auto rifle...." here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!