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sks safety?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by drjoker, Nov 20, 2009.

  1. drjoker

    drjoker Well-Known Member

    does the sks have a firing pin safety? i mean, if you drop it, will it go bang? i think that safety switch on the sks is just a trigger block only. please correct me if i'm wrong. thanks.
  2. Glockman17366

    Glockman17366 Well-Known Member

    The SKS has a free floating firing pin. That safety blocks the trigger, as you'd written.
    SKS rifles can double (or more with a full magazine) if the firing pin is sticking. Even releasing the bolt can result in a discharge.
    That's why it is recommended loading one round initially. If that round doesn't fire when the bolt is released, then eject that one round (or fire it) and load two rounds. Pull the trigger and ONE round should fire. If both rounds discharge...well, that's doubling.

    This rifle design is quite old...and it's a communist block design. The SKS is a robust rifle, but safety was not the primary concern of the design and manufacture. Be aware of that and learn the limitations of this rifle.

    I had an SKS double once. Scared the bejeesus out of me! I like mine, but I'll never load an SKS in my house or keep one loaded in the house.
  3. RockyMtnTactical

    RockyMtnTactical Well-Known Member

    A lot of people have reported having slamfires with their SKS. Always point it in a safe direction...
  4. jcwit

    jcwit Well-Known Member

    Better yet, go to www.murraysguns.com -- and get a spring loaded firing pin. Safety first.
  5. Odnar

    Odnar Well-Known Member

    +1 Slamfire. Pointed downrange, of course. There's a reason for safety rules.
  6. jcwit

    jcwit Well-Known Member

    I agree to keep the muzzle pointed down range but its still no fun to have a slamfire no matter where the muzzle is pointed. And it it fires before the bolt is fully closed, welllllll
  7. kanook

    kanook Well-Known Member

    Had a friend that spent a couple of years in Nam. He had never shot an SKS or an AK and wanted to see what it felt like to shoot what had been shot at him.

    I owned both at the time and said sure lets go. When we arrived at the "shooting hole" I loaded the AK mag and showed him how to charge and shoot it. AP was still legal to knowingly shoot and we were using a 4"x4"x 1/4 steel post as a target at 50 yds.

    He hit 28 out of 30. Then I put the stripper clip in the SKS and said run it down with your thumb, pull out the stripper clip, take off the safety and fire. He ran the ammo in, pull out the stripper clip and 10 rounds were gone that fast.

    I asked him what he did. I thought at first he had somehow touched the trigger. Nope, With as thorough as I was with cleaning, it wasn't good enough with corrosive ammo.

    The firing pin had froze
  8. greyling22

    greyling22 Well-Known Member

    safety locks the trigger only. the sear can still move out from under the hammer if the gun is dropped. particularly if there is negative engagement at the hammer sear contact point. (I've looked in 2, one has neutral, one had negative).

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZpP4sfvWJlM is a series of clips that details how to do a trigger job on an sks, and there is a section on how the trigger and safety work and what the types of engagement mean. it's kind of long, but very clear and informative.

    Simple test for engagement: remove the reciever cover and bolt spring, leave the bolt and carrier in place. after checking that the chamber is empty, dry fire the rifle several times, observing hammer movement prior to release. (pull trigger slowly) If the hammer moves forward (toward the bolt, as if it was releasing) you've got negative sear engagement, avoid these rifles. If the hammer doesen't move, you've got neutral, this is ok, but not super safe. What you want is for the hammer to move slightly backward indicating positive engagement, this is the safest condition, but has the heaviest trigger. I personally like neutral.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2009
  9. carbine85

    carbine85 Well-Known Member

    Even with the spring loaded firing pin they can slam fire. Mine has done so twice. You need ammo with hard primers. The next to me at the range 3-4 weeks had his slam fire 3 rounds. I always ride the charging handle home on the 1st round with the SKS.
  10. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Well-Known Member

    Enter "Sacramento Bee SKS" etc in Google and it is possible to read the newspaper article about a gun range tragedy.
    The SKS' owner either did not know about slam fires and used softer primer US-made ammo, or maybe thought that it was almost impossible.

    After about three-four rounds went off like a machine gun and missed,
    the last round got him.
  11. qajaq59

    qajaq59 Well-Known Member

    I didn't know about that spring loaded firing pin. I'll send my buddy an e-mail about it because his rifle slam fired and scared him but good.
  12. jcwit

    jcwit Well-Known Member

    Did not relize this but putting in a spring loaded firing pin would sure help, can't hurt. Nothing is foolproof particularly in the hands of mankind.
  13. wally

    wally Well-Known Member

    Simple safety check of the stock SKS. Chamber and magazine empty, bolt forward, pickup the rifle and shake it with your ear near the bolt. If you can't hear the firing pin rattle, don't use it! Same for a Markarov pistol.

  14. Limeyfellow

    Limeyfellow Well-Known Member

    Most rifles created at the time can suffer the same problem, including such things as the M1 Garand. Really it is just how free floating firing pin designs are. If you throw in some hard primers and keep the firing pin channel clean you are generally fine.

    Originally the SKS had a spring to hold it back designed in the system. Early Russian ones had them. It was however dropped in the late 40s. If it makes you feel better you can always add one of Murray's modified firing pins and springs or craft your own.
  15. tmajors

    tmajors Well-Known Member

    Very simple preventative of maintaining and cleaning your rifle including the bolt assembly. Any semi-automatic firearm can have this problem, but the SKS gets the most bad press on it because of the gun being inexpensive and the design of the firing pin. My bet is that 90+% of so called slam fires are due to poor rifle maintenance.

    For extra preventative as mentioned above get a firing pin spring from Murry's. Spring also allows for soft primers so good to have anyways.

    I've had my SKS for 15 years now (until about 2 years ago my SKS was my rifle) with countless amounts of ammo fed to it and never had a problem. No I don't have a spring on my firing pin, but I clean it well after every shooting session.

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