Saiga Ak 74 vs AR 15


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xxxleafybugxxx
February 7, 2012, 12:26 PM
This will likely draw a strong response from all the AR fanboys, but have heard great things on both. One advantage I see with the AK is very cheap ammo.
What are you opinions? I've also heard the Saiga 74 accuracy is surprising for an AK. Also, can you change the trigger on the Ak?

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Chopdoktor
February 7, 2012, 12:29 PM
I have both (Saiga is converted and decked out in AR furniture), and yeah, I put an adjustable trigger in my 74. I'll still take the AR hands-down, any day, but the 74 is a fine weapon in its own right. I like it much more than any 47 I own. It is accurate, but the AR is much more so. 5.45x39 is cheap, and mags aren't too pricey, either. If my plan is to just go out and shoot the crap out of stuff on my personal range, the 74 is usually what I grab, due in part to ammo cost.

JustinJ
February 7, 2012, 12:46 PM
I have a Colt 6720 and a Russian Arsenal 74. The 74 with surplus mil ammo, 7N6, is pretty much the same and the 6720 with M855 in the accuracy dept. The colt will do sub moa with match ammo but no such ammo is available for the 74 so who knows how accurate the 74 could be. There are several AK trigger options out there but i'm a fan of the Arsenal. The 74 is not designed for a "sniper" trigger but neither is the 6720. I'd put a fancy AK trigger on a decked out .308 saiga in a SDM configuration but for a standark AK i find those triggers to be not applicable. If the zombies arose tomorrow I'd grab the 74 first.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 7, 2012, 12:52 PM
Thanks justin. I did find that hornady had 62gr steel cased hunting ammo for the 5.45 that had a ballistic tip. Not sure how good this stuff is. My debacle is I'm a fan of the AK platform. Never had an AR before. But I cannot argue with the prices of the 5.45.
Also, I could buy a 74 for roughly the price of a build I was looking at.
What are scope mounting/red dot mounting options for this platform? Anything reliable, and sturdy?

jrdolall
February 7, 2012, 01:11 PM
I love my 74 but ammo is not readily available locally. Academy Sports wants $8.95 a box for Tula 5.45 and $4.19 for Tula 7.62 so buying a couple of boxes is not a good idea. None of the local stores have good prices on the 5.45 either but I can buy online for around the same price as the 7.62 or the .223.

JustinJ
February 7, 2012, 01:17 PM
5.45 either but I can buy online for around the same price as the 7.62 or the .223.

I've never seen 1080 rounds of 5.56 or 7.62 for $130.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 7, 2012, 01:18 PM
jrdolall, whats your accuracy like? you shoot plain irons?

xxxleafybugxxx
February 7, 2012, 01:21 PM
The difference between AK and AR for me is...
I would feel much more comfortable shooting silver, brown bear wolf etc, through an AK than an AR.
When looking at ammo prices, I don't even consider steel cased for the AR. Not the same for the AK.

http://www.ammunitiontogo.com/product_info.php/pName/750rds-545x39-silver-bear-60gr-fmj-ammo/cName/545x39-fmj

d2wing
February 7, 2012, 02:40 PM
My Saiga with a side mount 3-9 scope is a 4 moa shooter. I had issues with feed ramps, the online kit finally fixed it. My AR shots steel but make sure you have a H2 buffer and a good extractor and spring set up if you are running a carbine upper.

wnycollector
February 7, 2012, 03:18 PM
I own several AR's plus two converted Saiga's (5.45 and 7.62x39). I agree with JustinJ, my Saiga with 7n6 is as accurate as any of my AR-15's with Russian steel case ammo...but it costs ~50% less to feed it. If SHTF, I would feel comfortable with either of my Saiga's or AR-15's.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 7, 2012, 03:21 PM
probably just stick with getting the AR and get the Saiga down the road

JustinJ
February 7, 2012, 03:31 PM
What are scope mounting/red dot mounting options for this platform? Anything reliable, and sturdy?

The midwest industries sidemounts i've handles felt good and they have 30 mm rings so you can cowitness an aimpoint or just a standard rail. I have one of their ak quadrails and it is very solid if you like the scout mount. They make them various top sections so you can cowitness a variety of optics with the irons.

My POSP mount is completey solid. Kalinka Optics carries a number of other traditional AK mounts but i've heard mixed things.

Another popular option is the Texas Weapons Systems. I've heard great things and the one i handled felt great so one of those is on my "to get list". They even have a rear sight available so your irons are still available.

Supposedly the current UTG side mounts are solid but the one i had years ago was junk and anything but sturdy.

d2wing
February 7, 2012, 08:43 PM
Morta, not really.

chris in va
February 8, 2012, 04:45 AM
I had an AK for a while.

Get the AR. Makes a lot more sense for everyday shooting, especially if you need to tweak it.

CGRifleman
February 8, 2012, 10:10 AM
Also, can you change the trigger on the Ak?
Look up Red Star Arms adjustable triggers. I have them in both my AKs, one of which is a converted Saiga 5.45. Once properly adjusted, they're as smooth as some 2-stage AR triggers. Look to JG Sales for some good steel mags.
FWIW I'd go with Saiga 5.45... mine cost half as much as my AR and is cheaper and more fun to shoot.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 8, 2012, 11:27 AM
Also, there is non corrosive ammo for 5.45

M1key
February 8, 2012, 12:14 PM
Also, there is non corrosive ammo for 5.45
Yes, at twice the cost. The most effective ammo is the corrosive Russian 7N6, but I wouldn't want to run that through a DI gas system.

For 5.45, the only choice for me is the AK-74, as in Saiga. I own two and they are both capable of 1.5 MOA with just about any 5.45 ammo/4x scope (converted to PG or not). The Arsenal SLR105 I owned would not shoot quite as well...

YMMV

M

xxxleafybugxxx
February 8, 2012, 12:28 PM
Silver Bear, Wolf, Tula, Brown Bear, All of these say NON CORROSIVE. Unless they are lying, ?????????????????????

Also, I'm a big fan of the AK platform. I have a WASR 10. I feel like this could be almost a better option vs an AR, for money reasons, and if it really is almost as accurace, why not?

Justin
February 8, 2012, 12:30 PM
Saiga, and AK-74 in general, have accuracy almost on par with the M16.

Yeah, no, they don't. If that were the case, you'd see people using AKs to win rifle competitions.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 8, 2012, 12:36 PM
I think I've heard of it happening before...

JustinJ
February 8, 2012, 12:54 PM
Quote:
Saiga, and AK-74 in general, have accuracy almost on par with the M16.

Yeah, no, they don't. If that were the case, you'd see people using AKs to win rifle competitions.

In my experience, an off the rack Arsenal AK74 with military surplus ammo will hold its own against an off the rack Colt 6920 with military surplus ammo. There is certainly much more one can do to improve the AR's accuracy which would certainly give it an advantage in many types of competition. Not to mention there is no match grade ammo for the 74 and it is much harder to reload. Also, i would suspect many people in competition use the AR because there are biases towards it in our country that are not based on the merits of each weapon. Those with military and LE experience will of course also gravitate to what they know. If one doesn't exist it would be cool if "stock" gun competitions were created in which competitors must use guns in standard infantry configurations with standard issue ammo.

-v-
February 8, 2012, 02:37 PM
Get whichever you like, and tweak it how you want it. At this point, there's just as many do-dads to slap on a AK as there are for an AR. Texas Weapons Systems and Parabellum armaments are your two choices for a top-rail cover for a scope. The latter also is working on a prototype HK-style non-reciprocating left sided front charging handle for the AK (replaces the gas tube, and probably the gas piston).

In terms of bleeding edge accuracy, an AR15 can be made to be very accurate. In terms of AE Black Box or XM855 in an Colt 6920 vs a 5.45 Saiga with surplus 7N1, you won't see much difference, other then ammo cost, and the saiga needs to be washed out with a garden hose after shooting (corrosion prevention).

A lot comes down to what you want to do with your rifle: Is it going to be a weekend range plinker shooting soda cans and washing machines? Are you going to hand load and try to print that perfect 1/8th MOA 10 shot group? Something to keep behind the back seat of the truck? Or something to keep stashed away for a rainy day? If you want bleeding edge accuracy, naturally go with an AR. If you want a plinker, either will suit you fine, truck gun? I'd go with a saiga, and rainy day? I'd invest in property and camping gear myself.

mshootnit
February 8, 2012, 02:54 PM
saiga ak-74 rifles are nice after you add the extra parts for the conversion. You should be able to utilize the very good arsenal 2 stage trigger group. The ak74 is not picky when it comes to function. They function 100% with any milsurp 74 mag, and any milsurp 74 ammo most of which is excellent in performance. It is corrosive though so quick cleaning with water based cleaner is a necessary step.
Now if you want MOA (or close to it) accuracy you want an AR-15. These have a solid top receiver for mounting optics which is a huge plus. There are supremely accurate barrels available for the AR-15, free float tubes and excellent triggers. All of this allows the AR-15 to far surpass the 74 in the accuracy department. But the 74 Is adequate.
I own both.

flyskater
February 8, 2012, 05:03 PM
I have saigas in 3 different calibers including 5.45 and also ARs' in several calibers. As a defense weapon I'd use my 5.45. Recoil is like shooting a 22LR. Extremely reliable more devastating exit wound than 5.56. With a red dot, accuracy is about the same at 50 yards.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 8, 2012, 05:11 PM
My AR will be bought sooner, but I would like to eventually own a Saida 74. I would maybe hunt deer with it too (:
Can I get a clear agreement on this??? They DO make non corrosive ammo for this caliber... Silver bear, and those like it... wolf brown bear, tula...
I probably would not shoot corrosive ammo through any semi auto gun.
I can stay away from russian mil surp when there are other surplus rounds like wolf...

JustinJ
February 8, 2012, 05:20 PM
My AR will be bought sooner, but I would like to eventually own a Saida 74. I would maybe hunt deer with it too (:

The bullet of the 74, 5.45 x 39, is quite similar to the 5.56 x 45. If you want to hunt deer a 47 in 7.62 x 39 would be better suited.

Justin
February 9, 2012, 07:16 PM
For general range plinking, there's probably little difference in perceived performance. I'm a bit surprised you don't get better accuracy out of your Colt, though. In most cases, even bone-stock M4-style rifles with surplus ammo should shoot around 2MOA.

There is certainly much more one can do to improve the AR's accuracy which would certainly give it an advantage in many types of competition. Not to mention there is no match grade ammo for the 74 and it is much harder to reload.

This is exactly why the AR is generally a better choice. Even a barebones rifle can be upgraded and made significantly more accurate with little effort.

Also, i would suspect many people in competition use the AR because there are biases towards it in our country that are not based on the merits of each weapon.

Disagree. Among those at the top of the game, if another platform offered even a slight advantage, you'd see a wholesale shift among the best shooters. They tend to be quite unemotional about their choice of rifle.

Those with military and LE experience will of course also gravitate to what they know.

But that doesn't account for the majority of 3 gun shooters who are civilians and choose to go with the AR.

If one doesn't exist it would be cool if "stock" gun competitions were created in which competitors must use guns in standard infantry configurations with standard issue ammo.

In 3 Gun, you can shoot Limited/Tactical division. In High Power, you can shoot Service Rifle. In those divisions, even bone-stock guns can be competitive at the local level, and at the national level, there isn't a whole lot that needs to be done to improve the guns. Contrary to popular belief, the vast majority of competitors are not shooting fully blown race guns festooned with optics and bipods.

JustinJ
February 9, 2012, 07:24 PM
For general range plinking, there's probably little difference in perceived performance. I'm a bit surprised you don't get better accuracy out of your Colt, though. In most cases, even bone-stock M4-style rifles with surplus ammo should shoot around 2MOA.

My Colt does shoot 2 moa with surplus. The Arsenal shoots slightly bigger groups but not by much.

Robert
February 9, 2012, 07:33 PM
I have never shot for groups. All I know is using my AR with a 4x scope from prone under the bench, no supports, I can ring my popper at 425y so easy it has become a little boring. Unless it is windy, then that gets fun playing with windage. Point being, MOA means nothing to me. I could really care less. If I can hit the steel plates at the ranges I need then great. If not then I am seeking another weapon. And so far my parts build AR is doing amazing.

Ignition Override
February 9, 2012, 08:58 PM
Maybe there is a large selection of AK-74s which were not assembled by Century Arms.

Weren't quite a number of Century's AK-74s fitted with barrels which has 5.56 bores?
Some of these did not work with the required 5.45 bullets.

Sturmgewehre's report over a year ago was interesting. Century was said to have been totally aware of the barrel/bore situation. Did they figure that shooters would not go check the keyholes from 100 yards?

Justin
February 9, 2012, 09:02 PM
All I know is using my AR with a 4x scope from prone under the bench, no supports, I can ring my popper at 425y so easy it has become a little boring.

And then we bust the timer out and things change considerably... :evil:

xxxleafybugxxx
February 9, 2012, 09:13 PM
If I had a few years to plan for a SHTF scenario, I would proabably buy multiple ak 47's and 74's. I know for the 74, you can buy thousands of rounds for very cheap (relatively) and I would just stock up

Justin
February 9, 2012, 09:15 PM
AK-pattern guns make perfectly serviceable 250-300 yard carbines, especially if you know how to run one.

JustinJ
February 10, 2012, 09:50 AM
Maybe there is a large selection of AK-74s which were not assembled by Century Arms.

Arsenal AKs, except for the milled, are all built by the same factories that make AKs for the Russian and Bulgarian militaries. They are imported into the US in "sporting" configurations to sidestep importation laws against certain military pattern rifles. They have original receivers, trunions, bolts, carriers and barrels. Arsenal then converts them back to original configurations with enough american made parts to be legally compliant(922r). Aside from the full auto components they are essentially identical to Russian and Bulgarian real AKs. The american parts used by Arsenal, generally furniture and trigger group, are all top quality. The furniture on Arsenals is every bit as good as that of the Bulgarian AK parts kit i have. Arsenal rivets are also top quality which is an advantage over most at home Saiga conversions.

henschman
February 10, 2012, 03:40 PM
On the accuracy issue, it would seem both the AR platform and the AK-74 platform, in factory configuration firing military ammo, are roughly on par accuracy-wise (in my experience both are around 2 MOA average). However, most people shoot a little better with the AR, since it has better iron sights (longer sight radius, and aperture instead of notch). Also, when it comes to ammo selection there is a lot better/more accurate ammo available for 5.56, and when you get into reloading, there is a LOT more bullet and brass selection for the 5.56. Also, there aren't really any after-market barrels available for the 74, short of custom made ones, whereas with the AR there is a very wide selection of barrels as well as other parts. It is easy to free-float an AR... not so easy with a 74. Also there are a variety of drop-in triggers for the AR that are superb... not so easy with a 74. You MIGHT be able to give it as good of a trigger pull as a top shelf AR trigger, but once again it would have to be a custom job.

So in short, they have about the same accuracy potential from the factory, but there is a lot more you can do to improve the AR.

The reason the AK doesn't win competitions has more to do with the fact that it is not very optic-friendly, the manual of arms isn't as quick, and it is much less customizable with handguards, etc... though accuracy is a consideration too.

Girodin
February 12, 2012, 12:43 PM
Yeah, no, they don't. If that were the case, you'd see people using AKs to win rifle competitions.

In my experience, an off the rack Arsenal AK74 with military surplus ammo will hold its own against an off the rack Colt 6920 with military surplus ammo. There is certainly much more one can do to improve the AR's accuracy which would certainly give it an advantage in many types of competition.

I'm a bit surprised you don't get better accuracy out of your Colt, though. In most cases, even bone-stock M4-style rifles with surplus ammo should shoot around 2MOA.

2 MOA is very doable with Saigas in my experience. When people start talking about accuracy with ARs they seem to be referring to that of high end guns with high quality ammo and fail to account for the fact that ARs run the gambit as does the ammo that may be shot out of them. A saiga will not keep up with my Noveske or other free floated ARs with high end barrels. Of course, neither will a lot of other ARs. ARs do tend to have sights that are more conducive to accurate shooting than the AK open sights. My experience is that using a 4 MOA aimpoint and shooting from field positions with wolf ammo accuracy isn't noticeably different between my Novekse and my .223 saiga. They same is true when shooting other makes of AR with surplus brass ammo. If I want to change things and shoot for absolute accuracy the Noveske can surely blow it out of the water.

The AR is the better gun for 3 gun and the like and I think much of it is for reasons apart form accuracy.

I may have missed it but what is the OP's purpose for this gun and what type of AR is he looking at. I have said for a while now my preference in guns is:

1. Nice AR
2. Nice AK (saigas, veprs, etc)
3. other AKs
4. Other ARs

If the gun is a range blaster then a decent AR or a decent AK with both be fun and the cheaper ammo of the '74 could swing things. If it is a competition gun then a good AR is hands down the winner. If it is a self defense gun then either could work but my preference is the order listed above. Before I could every say AK or AR I need to know what AR we are talking about and the intended uses.

One thing to consider is a lot of money can be spent on an AK, that was originally bought to save money, trying to give it the feature of an AR. In fact the cost can quickly exceed the price of a very serviceable AR.

This is exemplified by something I find curious, the fact that the Suarez people after years of deriding the AR and trumpeting the AK, and bemoaning any one for "trying to turn an AK into an AR" have finally taken to doing just that. If you look at what they are doing these days they are basically trying to make an AK have the features of an AR. They have gone to using 5.45 guns. They are trumpeting the TWS rail and either ultimak gas tubes or now the TWS hand guard with top rail. Basically this is an expensive way to try and get a flat top and a quad rail. They are putting magpul stocks on them and replacing the commie muzzle devices with US flash hiders. There is a lot of discussion as of late about how to add folding BUIS.

Lets run the prices:

Saiga in 5.45: approx $330

Basic conversion w/ parts Suarez trumpets: $200

TWS dust cover: $150

TWS hand guards and top rail: $270

Thread barrel: $50-100

Flash hider: (we will say a cheap A2) $10 (but could be $80 for a vortex or the like).

Stock adapter: $90

CTR stock: $90

Basically you are now looking at a $1200 AK that still falls short of a similarly priced AR in a number of respects.

I'm not against updating AKs but I think from an economic standpoint if one wants the features of an AR they should get an AR.

wally
February 12, 2012, 01:30 PM
One advantage I see with the AK is very cheap ammo.

Wolf .223 is the same price per 1000 as Wolf 7.62x39 so cost is not an issue if you are willing to shoot equal ammo "quality". The AR benefits from better ammo a lot more than the AK does.

The only cheaper AK ammo is 5.45x39 corrosive surplus and no telling how long the supplies will last. Wolf 5.45x39 is about $10-20 per 1000 more expensive than the .223 or 7.62x39.

I like them both. AK is about as simple as rugged as can be. AR sets the standard for modularity -- lower (legally the gun) can have many different calibers.

Flip a coin, odds are you'll buy the other eventually :)

This is exemplified by something I find curious, the fact that the Suarez people after years of deriding the AR and trumpeting the AK, and bemoaning any one for "trying to turn an AK into an AR" have finally taken to doing just that.

Whatever the market will bear. Personally other than some kind of optic to accommodate my aged eyeballs I'd rather not have a gussied up AK. IMHO the Ultimak is the best setup overall, with the TWS rail system best if you want a scope, but I find few AKs really benefit form a scope over a red dot.

FlyinBryan
February 12, 2012, 08:24 PM
I have a Colt 6720 and a Russian Arsenal 74. The 74 with surplus mil ammo, 7N6, is pretty much the same and the 6720 with M855 in the accuracy dept.

there is something seriously wrong with your colt.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 12, 2012, 08:32 PM
Wally, 5.45x39 is some of the cheapest rifle mil surp out there. And while 7.62x39 and 5.56 may be the same price for wolf, I will not shoot wolf through and AR. Only time I've ever tried it, it was a jam-o-mattic. Probably just buy m855, or m193 for the AR.

FlyinBryan
February 12, 2012, 08:41 PM
start reloading for it

500 very high quality hornady 55g fmjbt.............40.00 bux
apprx 1.3 lbs of hodgdons h322........................30.00 bux
500 cci small rifle primers................................20.00 bux

range brass in .223 is plentiful and free

500rds of extremely high grade, sub m.o.a. very clean shooting .223........ 90.00 bux

xxxleafybugxxx
February 12, 2012, 10:35 PM
That isn't a fair estimate. For me anyways, I don't have reloading equipment

ugaarguy
February 12, 2012, 11:34 PM
I will not shoot wolf through and AR. Only time I've ever tried it, it was a jam-o-mattic. Probably just buy m855, or m193 for the AR.
Then it was a defective AR.

If an AR won't eat steel cased ammo I'd first look at the chamber: It's probably tight, rough, not chrome lined or nitrided, or some combination of those factors.

I'd also look at the extractor & related small parts. Is the claw sharp & hard, or is it soft and/or chipped? After that, there are some tiny upgrades, unlikely to be the real problem, but they can improve reliability - especially in AR carbines. Is the spring the old style 3 coil, or the new 5 coil? Does the spring have the hard rubber insert, and Crane o-ring surround?

d2wing
February 12, 2012, 11:34 PM
I've lots of both. The best AK, my current Saiga wil on occasion shot 3 shot groups about 2.5 inches at 100 yards, but usually shoots 4 moa with flyers. There is no way to predict the flyers so it cannot be called a 2 or 2.5 moa gun. My AR always shoots under 1.5 moa, no flyers. While both are acceptable they are not the same. The experience of others might vary some but no one has been able to verify publicly at a real match that any AK is equal to any AR both in good stock condition with decent typical factory ammo. It is easy to make claims, take you guns to matches and let's see.

d2wing
February 12, 2012, 11:36 PM
In addition an H2 or so buffer might help.

gotboostvr
February 13, 2012, 01:02 AM
I'll say this, I was shooting a Arsenal AK-74 today (converted Saigia) back to back with my BCM, and was drilling a little plastic reactive target at 50-60 yards with boring regularity with both.

The 74 had ZERO recoil to speak of, just none. Noticiably less than my midlength with a rifle buffer.

Justin
February 13, 2012, 01:07 AM
That isn't a fair estimate. For me anyways, I don't have reloading equipment

There's an easy way to solve that problem... ;)

sturmgewehr
February 13, 2012, 01:11 AM
This video may answer some of your questions.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n98LszJAlTE

xxxleafybugxxx
February 13, 2012, 03:20 PM
I was going to post a new thread, but if I get get answeres here I won't

Is there a gall in 5.45?
Overall, how do galils preform?

xxxleafybugxxx
February 13, 2012, 03:21 PM
I meant Galil rifle

SpentCasing
February 13, 2012, 03:48 PM
Is there a gall in 5.45?
Overall, how do galils preform?

No. Israel is a NATO country so 5.56NATO or 7.62NATO.
Awesome as long as we arent talking Golanis and are talkin real IMI Galils

Sam Cade
February 13, 2012, 04:06 PM
Israel is not a NATO member.

http://www.nato.int/cps/en/natolive/nato_countries.htm

SpentCasing
February 13, 2012, 04:18 PM
Ah, yep. Sams right. They are technically not a NATO ally.

They prefer our M16s over there as opposed to the Galil.

Sam Cade
February 13, 2012, 04:26 PM
Overall, how do galils perform?

Adequately.

It never was used in large amounts and was overshadowed in service by AR type carbines and rifles which were not only cheaper for the IDF to purchase but were much preferred by most IDF personnel.

The few (comparatively speaking) galils that entered service ended up mostly in the hands of mounted or support personnel and border guards, though the last bunch of Magavnikim I chatted up all had ancient slick side CAR15s.

The micro-tavor is the new issue weapon for everybody but who knows when they will start showing up in significant numbers.

http://www.israel-weapon.com/?catid={ED781BF5-92EB-43AB-BAC7-D89BFBC28144}

xxxleafybugxxx
February 13, 2012, 05:04 PM
Good to know. I guess Ill just stick with the AR's and AK's

xxxleafybugxxx
February 14, 2012, 01:21 AM
Going back to the saiga and the conversion kits...
What are they needed for? I see saigas that come in the sporter model, and regular with the pistol grip.. I think I'm missing something here.
Can the stock Saiga ak74 accept 30+ rd mags?
What am I missing?

ugaarguy
February 14, 2012, 03:53 AM
Going back to the saiga and the conversion kits...
What are they needed for? I see saigas that come in the sporter model, and regular with the pistol grip.. I think I'm missing something here.
The Saigas you see that look like a standard AK started life as sporter models. They had to in order to be legally imported to the US. There may not be a federal ban on so-called assault weapons, but there is still a prohibition on the import of non-sporting firearms, and the manufacture of non sporting firearms from too many imported parts. Once here some companies and distributors convert Saigas to standard AK configuration, but replace enough foreign made parts with US made parts to make them legal.
Can the stock Saiga ak74 accept 30+ rd mags?
What am I missing?
AK 74 mags won't fit a 5.45 Saiga without both modifying the mag well, and adding a bullet guide / feed ramp into the receiver to get the ammo to feed properly because the tops of AK mags sit too low in the Saiga receiver. There are US made Saiga mags over 10 round capacity which fit into an unmodified mag well, and have a feed ramp / bullet guide integrated into the magazine itself because these magazines sit a bit higher in the mag well. Unfortunately I've only seen them available in 5.56, 7.62x39, and .308; but not 5.45 yet.

Dinzag Arms is one of the more reputable suppliers of both factory Russian and US conversion Saiga parts. Here are some links that may help:
http://www.dinzagarms.com/mags/mags.html#
http://www.dinzagarms.com/922r/922r.html

M1key
February 14, 2012, 09:27 AM
QUOTE:
AK 74 mags won't fit a 5.45 Saiga without both modifying the mag well, and adding a bullet guide / feed ramp into the receiver to get the ammo to feed properly because the tops of AK mags sit too low in the Saiga receiver. There are US made Saiga mags over 10 round capacity which fit into an unmodified mag well, and have a feed ramp / bullet guide integrated into the magazine itself because these magazines sit a bit higher in the mag well. Unfortunately I've only seen them available in 5.56, 7.62x39, and .308; but not 5.45 yet.


Not true.

Bulgarian, Russian, E. German bakelight, and Romanian polymer and steel '74 mags are identical and should lock in the Saiga without any modification. Many of the guys on Saiga-12.com claim the Saigas will even run fine without the bullet guide. Mine will too, but I installed the guide in both of them anyway.

Surefire doesn't make 30 round 5.45 mags because there are plenty of new, unissued Bulgarian mags around for a fraction of the cost that Surefire could make them. Also Tapco has gotten into the game with very good 10 and 30 rounders for $8 and $13 respectively. Tapco claims the mags will need a bullet guide to function properly.


M

ugaarguy
February 14, 2012, 11:38 AM
M1key, thanks for the correction on the 5.45 Saiga / AK mag compatability. How does using a foreign made mag over 10 rounds in stock Saiga affect legality regarding "sporting purposes"?

xxxleafybugxxx
February 14, 2012, 12:34 PM
So assuming I did get a Saiga 74, would I need to convert it to have 30 rd mag be used reliably?
If not, why do people even convert them in the first place?
Also, is there a difference between the brands Arsenal and Saiga? I was under the assumption they were the same.

M1key
February 14, 2012, 02:42 PM
M1key, thanks for the correction on the 5.45 Saiga / AK mag compatability. How does using a foreign made mag over 10 rounds in stock Saiga affect legality regarding "sporting purposes"?
Any mag that holds over 10 rounds is illegal in a factory Saiga.

M

FIVETWOSEVEN
February 14, 2012, 03:33 PM
I can't figure out what I want either, I want either a AR 15 in 5.56 or a Saiga in .223 or 5.45. The Saiga would be cheaper to convert than for me to build an AR 15 with that stripped receiver I have but the AR 15 is better overall IMO. I am starting to lean more to the Saiga after handling a stock "sporting" Saiga next to an AR 15 carbine but even so I'm still unsure.

xxxleafybugxxx
February 14, 2012, 03:34 PM
So then the conversion makes it legal?

Sam Cade
February 14, 2012, 03:44 PM
So then the conversion makes it legal?

Its the adding US manufactured parts that makes it legal.

stolen from TAPCO, of all places:


Title 18 Chapter 44 Section 922(r) of the United States Code, defined further by Title 27 Part 478.39 of the Code of Federal Regulation (CFR), ambiguously restricts semiautomatic rifles and shotguns to no more 10 imported parts from a list of 20 parts.


27 C.F.R. 478.89 lists 20 parts:

(1) Frames, receivers, receiver castings, forgings or stampings

(2) Barrels

(3) Barrel extensions

(4) Mounting blocks (trunions)

(5) Muzzle attachments

(6) Bolts

(7) Bolt carriers

(8) Operating rods

(9) Gas pistons

(10) Trigger housings

(11) Triggers

(12) Hammers

(13) Sears

(14) Disconnectors

(15) Butt stocks

(16) Pistol grips

(17) Forearms, hand guards

(18) Magazine bodies

(19) Followers

(20) Floorplates



Of these twenty parts, the laws states that you can have NO MORE THAN 10 imported parts on your semi-automatic rifle or shotgun. These twenty parts are meant to cover all platforms, and as you know all platforms are not the same. Without getting into specific platforms, starting out you know that you will not have to change more than 10 parts to ensure your rifle is compliant.

d2wing
February 14, 2012, 05:48 PM
I think that what you need to convert depends on when the gun was made and imported. Mine needed a new feed ramp and other mods. But newer imports may not.

El General
February 14, 2012, 06:30 PM
Not true.

Bulgarian, Russian, E. German bakelight, and Romanian polymer and steel '74 mags are identical and should lock in the Saiga without any modification. Many of the guys on Saiga-12.com claim the Saigas will even run fine without the bullet guide. Mine will too, but I installed the guide in both of them anyway.

Surefire doesn't make 30 round 5.45 mags because there are plenty of new, unissued Bulgarian mags around for a fraction of the cost that Surefire could make them. Also Tapco has gotten into the game with very good 10 and 30 rounders for $8 and $13 respectively. Tapco claims the mags will need a bullet guide to function properly.


M

M1key,

I thought the issue was that Saiga's could only use single stack AK mags and the usual high capacity double stack mags were too wide to fit into the mag well without alteration.

Regards,

EG

M1key
February 14, 2012, 06:39 PM
You are thinking of the "ban era" Romanian WASR-10s.

M

xxxleafybugxxx
February 14, 2012, 11:10 PM
This is very confusing... and seems a little stupid

FIVETWOSEVEN
February 14, 2012, 11:42 PM
Bulgarian, Russian, E. German bakelight, and Romanian polymer and steel '74 mags are identical and should lock in the Saiga without any modification. Many of the guys on Saiga-12.com claim the Saigas will even run fine without the bullet guide. Mine will too, but I installed the guide in both of them anyway.

How reliable are the converted Saigas with those magazines without a bullet guide? I'm looking to avoid installing one unless I absolutely have to.

M1key
February 15, 2012, 12:11 AM
You could try running without one first, and if you have problems, have one put in later. Bullet guides are pretty easy to install and ensure reliable feeding. Some guys install them whether they are needed or not. Heck, you can even glue one in with JB Weld yourself.

M

FIVETWOSEVEN
February 15, 2012, 12:25 AM
I've decided against converting, does anyone know where I can find a converted 5.45 Saiga for cheap?

ugaarguy
February 15, 2012, 12:32 AM
This is very confusing... and seems a little stupid
Welcome to US firearms laws. :banghead:

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