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Best AK-47 for the money?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Ricker, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Ricker

    Ricker Member

    I know the WASR-10s are cheap, but I've heard some bad things about them. Arsenals are really nice, and that's what I really want, but they're a bit picey, some of them. I don't see the point in spending $1000 + for an AK. What would be the best AK for the money?
  2. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

    The bad reputation about WASR's primarily came from the earlier ones. The newer ones available now are actually quite nice. They're rough, and have surplus parts, but they're very solid, reliable guns. They're not lookers, but they're good shooters. Many of them have threaded barrels, as well, to allow you to install muzzle brakes and hiders. They're a very good deal for the money.

    As for the Arsenals, they're a different animal. They're made from new-production Saiga rifles, made with new parts, modern tolerances, etc. They're fitted with premium parts and features. Both WASR's and Arsenals will be equally reliable, but the Arsenal is just a much more polished example.

    Bottom line: if you want it to shoot good and be fun, and don't care as much how it looks, go WASR. If you're willing to pay for the better fit and finish, go Arsenal.
  3. nalioth

    nalioth Well-Known Member

    I think you're getting your wires crossed a little bit.

    Arsenal, Inc of Las Vegas is Arsenal of Bulgaria's sales arm in the United States. They've been around since the early 2000s.

    They made their name with Bulgarian model Kalashnikovs, of which they still sell many.

    Their Saiga line is only about a year old.
  4. jon_in_wv

    jon_in_wv Well-Known Member

  5. DustyVermonter

    DustyVermonter Well-Known Member

    Aye yea....the Saiga
  6. migkillertwo

    migkillertwo Well-Known Member

    my wasr has been 100% after 300 rounds
  7. Girodin

    Girodin Well-Known Member

    I think this question depends on exactly what the buyer wants. Form a shear performance stand point I think I self converted saiga is the best bang for the buck. For something that goes bang and has authentic AK looks then a WASR might be a better value. If one is after an accurate clone of a particular model then something else might be the best buy.

    Another option I like for the money is a Draco SBR. That is likely my next AK platform weapon. I just need to decide how I will dress her up.

    I agree $1K or anything close to it is laughable for an AK rifle.
  8. Zundfolge

    Zundfolge Well-Known Member

    Saiga rifles are built in the same factory in Izhmash Russia that Soviet/Russian military AKs were made, so in essence its as close to a pure AK-47 (well actually AKM) you can get without dropping tons of cash and paying NFA tax.

    They're also priced well. Downside is you'll likely have to convert it to original military configuration yourself.

    Now if money is no object you can order a nice custom AK from Krebs but I gotta agree that if you're going to spend a kilobuck you might as well get something else *cough*AR*.cough*
  9. nalioth

    nalioth Well-Known Member

    My kilobuck will never be used on a *cough*AR*cough*.

    Robinson Arms XCR
    Sig 556
    Daewoo K1/K2

    AK reliability with AR15 ergos and mag capability.

    I don't like rifles that poop on their own dinner plates.
  10. GunTech

    GunTech Well-Known Member

    The one that works.

    I've owned quite a few, and most recently bought a CAI (yes, Century) AK74 just because 5.45x39 ammo is so cheap. It does not have a chrome bore, which I think is desirable in any rifle that's going to shoot military surplus of unknown quality. I've resigned myself to be scrupulous about cleaning.

    The only other nit is the canted front sight, for which CAI guns are notorious. This was quickly fixed with a lead hammer and a few well placed blows (nothing bent or damaged).

    In the week I have owned it, I have fired 1060 rounds (one metal can of surplus ammo) with zero malfuntions. The gun was cleaned after two range sessions.

    I feel like I got my $400 worth. The rifle shoots 2-3 MOA with irons off the bench, although after getting the rifle really hot, groups were more like 3-4 MOA.

    I only have three magazines right now, so that really slowed down shooting. But so far, I like the rifle enough to invest in a tech sight, Galil grip and Galil style handguard (I like the bigger grip). I plan on stopping there.

    I am looking at an Arsenal SGL-31 just for the chrome bore. Best price I've found is about double what I paid for the CAI.
  11. WardenWolf

    WardenWolf member

    The WASR 10/63 I bought last year has a chromed bore and threaded muzzle.
  12. Roastbeef

    Roastbeef Member

    Saigas are the best AK variants in the world. They are actually better than AK's. Their accuracy is underrated and the great thing about them is the different calibers that they offer. .308 and .223 giving them better ammunition that is more accurate than 7.62x39. And that is without mentioning what they offer in shotgun formats.
  13. Ricker

    Ricker Member

  14. migkillertwo

    migkillertwo Well-Known Member

    I know the draco pistol is really cheap, but wouldn't the work+ATF paperwork and tax be well over 500$?
  15. nathan

    nathan Well-Known Member

    A WASR is hard to beat . Kills as good as the pricey ones.
  16. Girodin

    Girodin Well-Known Member

    The final price depends greatly on the stock you want to run. For the stock one can spend anywhere from fairly cheap to more than the price of the gun. It will be over $500 though since the gun is approx 340 and the tax stamp is $200. One could keep it to $600 easily. As far as SBS weapons go it is priced pretty well and I would rather have it than most of the AKs I see selling for $600+.
  17. nalioth

    nalioth Well-Known Member

    The tax stamp is going to be $200 no matter what. Add that to the $350 price of the Draco, and you're at $500+ from the get-go.

    Any work that needs doing can be done by the owner, if they've got any sort of sense (folks who've converted a Saiga are fully qualified).
  18. Snakum

    Snakum Well-Known Member

    Well, you could spend $450 on a WASR 10/63 and have a weapon that shoots 2" - 4" groups with good Russian HP ammo (till the barrel gets hot) and goes BANG! every time you pull the trigger, no matter how rusty and mucked up it is. And you can work on it with a screwdriver and a hammer.

    Or you could spend $799 on an Arsenal and have a weapon that shoots 2" - 4" groups with good Russian HP ammo (till the barrel gets hot) and goes BANG! every time you pull the trigger, no matter how rusty and mucked up it is. And you can work on it with a screwdriver and a hammer.

    It's an AK. It is never going to have the accuracy of an AR, I don't care who you buy it from nor how much you spend. It is what it is. Hit the Search because this one was beaten to death here on THR years before most of us had even heard of THR.
  19. jon_in_wv

    jon_in_wv Well-Known Member

    Generally Atlantic has "partial" conversions like these on their website that hardly cost more than doing it yourself. Saigas used to be a lot cheaper and you could buy one and convert it for $400 bucks. Now that they have gone up in price it makes more sense to me to buy one of these.


    The Karoynavish looks like an even better deal if it uses the Saiga as a base. The guy from Atlantic arms posts on this forum. Look him up and ask him. I bought my Saiga conversion from him and he is a great guy to deal with.
  20. Gord

    Gord Well-Known Member

    Um, they're still the same $300-325 they were when I bought and converted mine a year ago. It clocked in at around $450 all told - which is a damned far cry from your "hardly costs more" $590 gun...

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