which AK-74?


December 21, 2011, 08:47 PM
so, I've already got the bug for another AK... I don't own a 74 so.... I'm going to get one... I'm not sure which one to get... please select which you'd get... if you choose other please put why... I already own several AKs... several in 7.62 x 39... a Saiga-12... a Saiga .308... a Golani in .223... this one would be just for the heck of it... to add to the collection... a wall hanger that would get shot a few times a year... thanks.

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December 21, 2011, 08:56 PM
If you can find an AKS-74, they're pretty nice. I think they're the best folder available and make an extremely light, handy, accurate package. I built my own with a Bulgarian parts kit on a Nodakspud reciever, but those kits aren't real common any more, especially with the original barrel. Not sure who's making one these days, but that's what I'd aim for.

I've never liked the Tantals or others with that funky wire stock. Better than an under-folder, but just not nice to shoot.

December 22, 2011, 12:16 AM
I'd go with an Arsenal SGL31. It's made at the same factory in Russia that makes the AK74 for the Russian Army. It's not a parts gun as all the parts are factory new including the chrome lined barrel. Some parts are US made to conform to the import laws but those are mostly the stock set, trigger group, pistol grip and gas piston IIRC.

I have an SGL21 which is the same rifle in 7.62X39mm and it's great.

December 22, 2011, 01:55 AM
Either Russian or Bulgy, SGL or SLR. Anything from Arsenal should be tops. The build route is another option too. Maybe since you have so many, rather than an off the shelf rifle, you could aquire parts and do it yourself. Or, send it off to one of the many great AK shops to be put together by the pros and get a rifle thats truly unique.

Armchair Bronco
December 22, 2011, 04:10 AM
I'm basically in the same boat as the OP. I'll be buying my first AK this month or next. It'll be an Arsenal AK-74 SGL-31 62. The 62 has the plum-colored composite stock.

That'll be the first thing thing that gets replaced. I've already ordered a used, solid wood Bulgarian AK-74 furniture set. It was $25 for the stock, upper and lower handguards, and an orange-red bakelite pistol grip. I'm planning to refinish the stock myself in a traditional Russian red color, but I don't like the shiny look of a glossy varnish so I'll be going the Tung oil route instead (more like an M1 Garand).

The furniture and pistol will add 3 imported parts to the mix, so to stay 922r compliant, I'll need to add a U.S. made magazine follower and magazine floor to whatever imported bakelite magazine I end up running with.

December 22, 2011, 08:36 AM
Get a Vz 58... it is truly a better rifle.

December 22, 2011, 08:51 AM
VZ 58 is 7.62 x 39... if I'm not mistaken

Rob G
December 22, 2011, 11:32 AM
Get a Vz 58... it is truly a better rifle.VZ 58 is 7.62 x 39... if I'm not mistaken

You are correct JohnnyK, the Vz 58 is a 7.62x39. And although it's a great rifle the OP was asking about AK-74s so it's not really an option for him.

December 22, 2011, 12:26 PM
I have a TGI truck gun, a couple of the Century Bulgarians and then I broke down and picked up the Arsenal SGL31. Now that was impressive. But it also cost twice as much as the Century Bulgarians...



December 24, 2011, 01:46 AM

I really like my Tantal...but I would recommend Interarms over Tantal (I think the added quality is worth the slightly higher price).

December 24, 2011, 02:53 AM
I'm actually on the market for an SLR-106U/R... It's very hard to find cause Arsenal stopped making it for some reason.. I found one at a local store down here in Hawaii... The owner knows what he has, so he's selling it for $1300... When I emailed Arsenal to ask how much they sold these, they said $1200 MSRP... I'm definetly buying it on my next paycheck.. That's the same reason I'm buying that rifle is to shoot a little then hang it on the wall...then shoot it again then hang it on the wall....:D

December 24, 2011, 09:40 AM
I vote Russian-American. IMHO the converted Saigas from Arsenal ate still the gold standard for AK variants in the USA.

December 24, 2011, 11:53 AM
@InkEd Russian AK-74 not Saiga... but AK-74 with Red Russian Furniture... i've already got 2 Saigas and converted them... I'm not looking for another one... but a 74 ready to shoot out of the box

December 24, 2011, 11:55 AM
I should have been more specific...

December 24, 2011, 12:08 PM
I've owned about a dozen different AK's, and at least 4 AK 74's. I bought a SGL-31-61 and it didn't have the accuracy I liked so I sold it and later bought a different SGL-31-61. The second one was a little straighter and shot better, and I still have that one. I think thats about as good as any. Other than that the best ones were the SLR105A1R and the Vepr 5.45 from Robinson which you can only find used if at all. Careful when purchasing used 74's a lot of folks run a lot of corrosive ammo through these.

I just stay clear away from US kit builds.

Buck Kramer
December 24, 2011, 02:40 PM
I have 2 Bulgarian AK-74's one in "tacticool" and the other in plum I love them both equally :). If you do go for the VZ-58 don't shoot surplus Yugo out of it. I hear you have to use the broken shell extractor quite a bit...

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