AK47 or AR15

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by DrewAK47, Jun 25, 2017.

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  1. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    I don't have a clue about the Croation mags. Being tight wouldn't be a deal killer. I run into that with M14 mags in an M1A all the time. Nothing a block of wood with sandpaper won't take care of. You can also take a little off the lugs with a small file if it won't lock into place. But then you have to wonder if the other geometry is good and what the overall quality control was like. When people start telling me things like, well some are a little tight, I read that as quality control was crap. One mag should be the same as the rest. If one is tight is your AK, then all of that pattern should be as well. If some are super tight and some are wobbly then it means their geometry is all over the place. Who knows, they may have very well been rejected as seconds for that very reason.

    Regarding Korean mags, I've never seen a Korean mag of any kind that was worth the metal it was made from.
     
  2. JHansenAK47

    JHansenAK47 Member

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    Interesting videos

    The south Korean mags are crap. The metal is thinner, welds are not as nice, and they rust easily. North Korean AK mags are good quality, but they are a collectors item and get collectors prices.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017
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  3. JHansenAK47

    JHansenAK47 Member

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    I have a few Croatian mags and they do fit in my SGL-21, WASR, VEPR, and Type 56 Norinco, but they are noticeably tighter to the point that they are difficult to insert and remove. I would pass on Croatian mags. The yugo military surplus mags on the other hand fit and function with none of those issues.
     
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  4. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    Just got back into the US last night (6-hour jet lag interval), and just don't Feel like reading all three pages of this.

    Has the 20-rd., authentic Hungarian Tanker AK mag been mentioned? They are rock-solid durable (I never said cheap), designed for Hun. paratroopers/tankers, and they have better ergos than the standard mag.

    Am I the only guy who has seen generic AKs with red dot sights hit smallish gongs at 300 yards on Youtube? Or with iron sights in a free stance--also at 300 yards?
    Even with the many advantages of ARs, decent AKs also seem to perform their basic mission quite well, despite the shorter iron sight distance....in trained hands.
     
  5. Prijador

    Prijador Member

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    Ignition Override,

    No, the Hungarian tanker mags have -not - been mentioned yet.
    (But they do feature prominently in the AK mag sticky on this very board)
     
  6. bnolsen

    bnolsen Member

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    Buy an ak47, save your money and buy an fn scar or hk416 or sig mcx later.
     
  7. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    Care to elaborate?
     
  8. bnolsen

    bnolsen Member

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    I spent a bit of time reading the henderson defense threads on ar15.com on both the ak47 and ar15, he owns a rental range in las vegas since 2013 with everything full auto, etc. The short of it is their wasr ak's are workhorses that run 80k to 100k rounds before they start breaking, they fix them with a tig welder or rivet in a new trunion. With any of their M4 systems the bolts start falling apart at about 20k rounds. The uppers and lowers don't crack, but I believe their bulgarian, chinese and century milled AK receivers don't crack either. They've had good reliability with the hk416, g36 rifles although I don't think they get quite as much use. It's an interesting read regardless.
     
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  9. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

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    AR-15, and for $1000, I'd recommend you get the Colt. The 6920 is hands-down the best sub-$1000 fighting carbine on the market. You can do so much more with an AR than with an AK and the Colt has so much more quality-control than any sub-$1000 AK you're going to find.
     
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  10. MachIVshooter
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    MachIVshooter Contributing Member

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    I'd much rather replace a bolt 4 or 5 times in 100k rounds than have to repair a cracked receiver or replace a trunnion. Have you ever replaced an AK trunnion? Not exactly a DIY job for most people. It's easier to re-barrel a bolt gun than an AK. I use a large press with 4 special pieces I machined to do it. Meanwhile, it takes under a minute for even an amateur to replace a $45 AR bolt, and anyone with a little bit of experience can build an AR from a pile of parts in an hour with just a bench vise, the $20 combo tool, a small hammer and a small punch set.

    I work with an SOT, I build guns from parts/kits as well as from scratch, and we have post sample conversions. I hate working on AKs. Even the "good" ones are crude things, and re-barreling and/or replacing trunnion is gonna set you back $150 plus parts through us. An AR barrel we'll usually replace for free if you buy through us, or about $25 if you bring your own, unless we have to drill it for FSB pins or do some other more involved operation because of your setup. Likewise, if you want your AK barrel threaded for suppressors, be ready to shell out $250. It's $75 for an AR.

    The "simplicity" of the AK design is overstated from a service standpoint. Field service is no big deal, but it takes far more skill and tooling to build/rebuild one than an AR does. The "more complex" design of the AR using threaded junctions and removable pins is far more conducive to service than the pressed fits and rivets of the AK, which are faster, cheaper and easier only in terms of factory production, not end user repairs.

    You also might want to check out some videos of what actually happens when a stock WASR is converted and run hard. The barrels walk right out:

     
  11. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    I was a 5.56/.223 sceptic for awhile. Now that there are a pile of really good 5.56/.223 bullets and factory loadings I have a different point of view. As far as the old (very old) issue of reliability of the M16/AR-15 design I can say this. I carried the M16A1, and the CAR-15 configuration, once in a while according to duty requirements . I did shoot competition with the M16A1 during which thousands of rounds were fired in the lead up during practices. Additionally some of us fired a not small amount of excess ammo full auto on various occasions, and after practice. I have never once experienced - or observed - a malfunction. These were all of course G.I. Colts.

    AK-47 based rifles retain some appeal. They do (the better ones) have a reputation for extremely good reliability, and I think there is no doubt that the 7.62x39 cartridge is capable of hitting harder. Therefore as a close in self defense weapon I would retain an AK (or two).

    I like both. They both have their place for me. If I were pressed with "if you could only have one" I would probably go with the AR. Considerations; parts availability (I would stick with mil spec for some degree of commonality); easy adaptability of sighting options, ammo/loadings versatility, weight of ammo. Commonality of ammo.
     
  12. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

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    Just a note on the 7.62x39 debate; keep in mind that this cartridge only kills like a rifle for a little over 100 yards. In fact, the typical x39 load goes under the 2000 fps requisite for so-called "hydrostatic shock" damage in tissue at about 120 yards. It will carry the mass, energy, and momentum of a .357 Magnum service load out to 300 yards, and of the 9x19 service load out to 500 yards, but you are still dealing with handgun wounding (permanent wound cavity only) beyond 120 yards or so. The 5.56 might not have quite power by some standards as the x39 up close, but most loads will maintain 2000 fps to at least 350 yards. The heavy 75 and 77 gr OTM rounds offer truly devastating performance out nearly twice that range by some accounts.

    The AR is designed and built in the American traditional of rifleman-ship and its accuracy and ergonomics support that. The AK was built for massed automatic fire from poorly trained conscripts. More attention was given to making it cheap and easy to mass produce than to how it shoots and it is operated more like a piece of farm equipment than a rifle by Western standards. If being able to clean your weapon with diesel fuel and a knotted shoe-string during the zombie apocalypse is all that matters to you, by all means, get the AK. But approaching five decades of service we can now affirmatively state that it isn't all that difficult to keep an AR in the fight either. I used to be an AK fan but these days have very little use in the platform or its cartridge.
     
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  13. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    Modern soft point ammo negates any threshold for hydrstatic shock. It then becomes an issue of hit probability.
     
  14. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

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    No, it doesn't. First off, most JSP show little expansion below 2000 fps and almost none below 1800 fps. Secondly, you can put a JHP or JSP in a handgun. It will expand, but it still doesn't wound through hydrostatic shock. According to research done by Fackler and others all projectiles, regardless of caliber and velocity, require 2000 fps to cause cavitation through shock damage. This is as true of soft points as it is of FMJs, and like I said, most soft-points show negligible expansion below this velocity as well.

    You can load a JSP in the x39 and it will increase its effectiveness in tissue. The round may even show appreciable expansion out to almost 200 yards. But below the velocity threshold of 2000 fps needed for cavitation, you will still only have the permanent wound channel created by tissue physically displaced by the projectile. That means your AK is really an assault rifle (or semi-auto clone thereof to be technically accurate) for only about 120 yards. Beyond that range, it is more comparable to a SMG. Meanwhile, you can put a similar soft point in a 5.56 and it will expand and have the potential to wound through cavitation out to at least 300 to 400 yards, depending on the exact load. The 7.62x39 still holds its own at up close and personal distances and is still favored by some elements of Russian special forces for this reason. If you only ever engage at bad breath distance, the 7.62x39 packs a lot of punch and has the ability to engage through different intermediate barriers better than most 5.56 loads. However, if may need to engage beyond the end of the block, if you need a rifle that kills like a rifle farther than you can throw a brick, there are better choices, which is why the Russians and Chinese have now jumped on the intermediate caliber high-velocity centerfire bandwagon.

    I've shot A LOT of stuff with A LOT of different 7.62x39 loads. It is an interesting cartridge and very useful within in spectrum, but you have to acknowledge its limitations. Same with the .300 Blackout--they are niche cartridges.
     
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  15. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    Some soft points from our best makers will begin to expand in tissue well below 1,800 fps. It just depends on their intended application. Hydrostatic shock requires requires some sort of fluid transmission point. A bullet striking lung tissue is not going to do it. Major artery, fluid filled stomach or gut, yes. Otherwise it is not going to be a factor whether you are shooting 5.56 or 7.62x39 with FMJ.

    At ranges less than 150 yards, to use some kind of a threshold, a good .30 Cal expanding bullet weighing around 125 grains does not need cavitation/hydrostatic shock to kill deer. Many people have killed many deer this way with 7.62x39 platforms. At ranges further than 150 yards, say up to 250, even a nominal amount of expansion will result in a significant wound channel with deep penetration.

    Humans by and large are far more psychogically fragile than animals, succumb to clinical shock, the fear of dying and pain quicker. Most human targets taking a 125 grain .30 caliber expanding bullet at reasonable distances in the chest, stomach or gut are not going to be in fighting shape. Blood loss, internal organ damage - clinical shock will be bad enough. If such a bullet strikes any major bone, especially the spine, pelvis, shoulder joints, etc it is essentially over. Most of the time

    The 5.56 main wounding capacity using the M193 55 grain FMJ has always been a matter of the bullets yawing after x inches of penetration, splitting their jackets, then fragmenting. This often produced a moderate internal permanent wound cavity promoting organ damage in the site area and blood loss.

    However this yawing effect was dependent on an impact velocity threshold. In the original M16 series of rifles with 20" barrels this range threshold IIRC limited this effect to about 250 yards or so. The more popular 16" barreled ARs reduce that distance significantly.

    And so back to soft points. There are now many outstanding 55 grain and up soft points (and other designs like monolithics etc) for the 5.56/.223 that work really well on deer etc. Effects on human targets should yield similar results, at similar ranges.

    Even using expanding bullets extending the wounding capacity of the 5.56/.223 much beyond about 300 yards is really stretching things unless you are using premium bullets in tailored loads out of longer length barrels.
     
  16. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Member

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    I have everything but the stripped lower assembly ($40 at my LGS) to build this exact BCM for $1300ish, and it's all in my cart right now. Just need to add my Aimpoint, bolt carrier group and magpul ACS, that I already have, and that's my limited 3 gun rifle for next season. So It'll only cost me $944 since I already have those spare parts from when the AR market bottomed out.

    $1300ish is about as cheap as it's going to get for a top tier AR15.
    [​IMG]

    Colt 6920's and 6970's are way below $1000 right now. I'm pretty sure I can even build a KISS BCM middy for under $1000.

    Don't get me wrong, AK's are fun to. But AR's are vastly superior FOR ME.
    -AR's have free float for ends long enough for me to reach out on
    -AR's weight less
    -less recoil
    -optic ready
    -light ready
    -187 different sling positions
    -better triggers
    -better mag release
    -better mags
    -easier to flick ambi safety
    -lefty friendly
    -magwells are $50

    -I run out of ammo before the rifle carbons up and gets sticky, so that whole myth is nonsense. I've never shot more than 1000 rounds in a day, and that ain't even close to anything that's going to stop an AR15.

    -our AK's often have spotty 3rd world quality and aren't as reliable as the myth tells us they should be.
    -is anyone running an AK in 3 gun???

    That being said, if you want an AK, get an AK. Just because the AR has evolved to a new level, doesn't make the AK any worse than it's ever been. Just leave the myth behind and have fun. I just wish AK's were $500 like a basic KISS AR15. Because an AK is a KISS carbine, and comparing it to a $1000ish AR, really isn't fair.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2017
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  17. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

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    No. Hyrdostatic shock is dependent on tissue density but regardless, most tissue is too elastic to receive permanent damage from these forces in ANY projectile traveling under 2000 fps. This is not conjecture or supposition, but demonstrated and observable fact.

    This is relative. Without cavitation, only the permanent wound channel being physically displaced by the projectile actually damages tissue. This means that your wound channel is usually approximately the size of the projectile, or a little less depending on the bullet's profile. So yeah, at 250 yards, your typical 125 gr x39 load has between 1600 and 1800 fps. At this velocity, it may show some expansion, but probably isn't going to expand past .45 caliber. So your wound channel, and yes, I have shot game at this range with a Yugo SKS, is going to be about half an inch in diameter. Generally speaking, this is plenty big to be unpleasant, but a similar bullet in a 5.56 is likely to create a wound channel several orders of magnitude larger because it still has over 2200 fps at that range with most loads. This means the bullet not only expands more, but this expansion causes more hydrostatic shock damage.

    The same could be said of a 5.56 round. Getting shot sucks.

    Yaw is not dependent on velocity. All spitzer (pointed) bullets have a tendency to yaw in mediums more dense than air because their center of gravity is located more towards the rear or base. Projectiles naturally want to fly mass forward, so all pointed bullets want to flip or yaw and fly base forward. This is not as dependent on linear velocity as much as rotational velocity. The primary wounding mechanism of all military pattern FMJ rifle bullets is yawing. This includes the 7.62x39 and is why the later M67 pattern projectiles are so much more effective than the earlier M43 projectiles. Fragmentation is velocity dependent. Both the M193 and M855 require 2500-2700 fps to reliably fragment, and most 5.56 mm rifles will reach this velocity around 140 to 180 yards.

    I don't know how much simpler I can say this--beyond 120 yards or so, the wound capacity of the 5.56 is significantly greater than the 7.62x39.

    Now then, whatever happened to "most humans or thin-skinned and weak...?" There is a prevailing myth that the 5.56 was designed to wound because the theory is that a wounded man takes more resources to deal with than a dead one. This is false. The 5.56 was not designed to wound rather than to kill. It was designed to wound rather than to miss. Hitting with the 7.62x39 beyond a couple hundred yards takes a lot of skill and practice. The 5.56 can easily hit to well beyond the distance it is actually effective by most standards. Now then, each of these hits may not be the Hammer of Thor, but even with the effect of being stabbed by a foot long screwdriver from say, 500 yards away, where the 5.56mm M855 has about the same velocity as the 7.62x39's 125 gr load has at 250 yards--1600 to 1800 fps--most humans are thin skinned and weak, and so this constitutes still a very bad day, does it not? And if a basically trained Marine can do this regularly while poorly trained conscripts and disgruntled goat farmers are missing with their AKMs, that makes the 5.56 more effective at that range, does it not? And that is with military issue ball ammo. In the civilian sector, the heavier 70+ gr OTM and monolithic expanding hollow points will be more effective at 300 yards than anything you can load in an AK will be at half that range because the 5.56 carries enough velocity to kill like a rifle at that range whereas the 7.62x39 is a SMG round beyond 150 yards.

    At any rate, caliber wars have been done before. Fackler and his decades of research in the field of terminal ballistics is available online for free with a simple Google search to anyone who cares enough to look. And it is not my intent to hijack the thread, so I am done with this aspect of the discussion.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2017
  18. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Member

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    Modern 5.56 out of a 14.5"+ barrel is much better than it's ever been. Can't really complain about the AR's "stopping power" anymore.

    Then we have .300blk for short barrels and/or suppressors, 6.8spc for AK like power at medium ranges, and .458 SOCOM if you feel like shooting a 12g slug like round out of an AR15. 6.5 grendel for ranges an AR shouldn't even be reaching.
     
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  19. coloradokevin

    coloradokevin Member

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    When I was younger I would have told you to pick an AK... rugged, reliable, bad-ass looking.

    These days I'm much more inclined to recommend an AR-15. The AR-15 is undoubtedly a more accurate platform, and a decent rifle is as reliable as you'll ever need a rifle to be (I have one with over 10,000 rounds through it without a single malfunction). The AR-15 has become much more affordable in the past few years, and it's undoubtedly a far more modular platform. In fact, in terms of modularity I'd say it is just about second to none... name one other gun that can be converted from a .22LR to a 5.56 to a .50 BMG in less than 20 seconds each!
     
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  20. ilbob

    ilbob Member

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    I suspect this is much more about personal preference than any real benefit from selecting one rifle over the other. Few if any of us are ever going to have to use a rifle of any kind for self-defense at more than spitting distance. Those that might have to use a rifle at long distances are probably not going to be given a choice of what rifle to use as their employer will tell them what to use.

    I do think on the whole that the AR platform has the advantage over the AK platform but I don't think it's enough that I would disqualify an AK from being used as a defensive firearm.

    Personally I think both are better than an M1 Garand when everything is taken into account. But that does not mean the Garand is a bad rifle either. Just means technology moved on a little.

    Heck if you're going to shoot somebody 500 yards away why not use a k98? Potentially a better choice for longer range shooting then either an AK or an AR
     
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  21. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    Hydrostatic shock is entirely dependent on the fluid content. You are way off here in basic physics, since hydrostatic shock can only be a result of hydraulics. In bone or aerated lung tissue kinetic impact induced hydraulic action will hardly occur. There simply is not enough fluid to make it happen. It is like saying you can throw a pebble in a thick heavy mud puddle, or a huge wet sponge, and get the same splash as a puddle of water.

    The 2,000 fps threshold for hydrostatic shock is theoretical. It can not be measured. The threshold for significant hydraulic action necessary to create significant hydrostaic shock is also much guess work. You can throw a brick into a bucket of water, or you could fire a solid copper .22 Swift bullet at 4,000 fps into the same bucket. What actually happens to a live mammal of a given weight when a projectile nearer to the lower bracket of weight/higher velocity in terms of actual hydrostatic shock is purely theoretical. Unless you are shooting live animals in a controlled experiment. There are thousands and thousands of pages by hunting writers spanning a hundred years who have covered this. Hydrostatic shock has never been accepted as some predictable measure of incapacitation in animals, and thus can not be taken as some predictable measure in humans. Since the mechanics of physical incapacitation are exactly the same to both categories.

    You might be confusing my reference to yaw as in flight. As it applies to the traditional M193 55 grain 5.56 bullet it refers to yaw after impact. I am surprised you are not aware of this since Fackler himself covered this very well. For this to occur, the impact velocity has to be in excess of something like 2,700 fps. This was when the standard barrel on an M16A1 was 20". With shorter barrels this reduced the range at which it occurs, and at longer ranges tended to turn the 5.56 into a .22 solid. Unless it struck bone. The newer, heavier, S109 green tip bullets do not exhibit this behavior to the same degree after impact and are even more likely to behave as a .22 solid.

    "Both the M193 and M855 require 2500-2700 fps to reliably fragment, and most 5.56 mm rifles will reach this velocity around 140 to 180 yards"

    The M193 nor the M885 will not reliably fragment at 2,500 to 2,600 fps in a live human or animal chest cavity. Forget gel - does not count here. So I don't know where you got that from. The point at which either round drops below 2,700 fps is entirely dependent on the barrel length, assuming the same load is used.

    In closing, you seem to have misread my original post. I view the '39 as a better short range hammer out to about 200 yards. The greatest deficiency of '39 platforms are their sighting/options etc. At these ranges it has nothing to do with velocity or hydrostatic shock. If that were even remotely true, the 5.56/.223 would have been an acceptable deer cartridge a very long time ago, before Nosler introduced their .223 Partition bullet loading, and those who followed after. It has to do with bullet design, construction and application.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2017
  22. bnolsen

    bnolsen Member

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    Some years back I was talking with a group of guys fresh off a tour in Iraq. They were not happy with the 5.56's inability to effectively penetrate the windshield of a terrorist driven car bomb. Not sure the AK would do much better. A 7.62x51 MBR? No sweat but they aren't exactly light weight.

    Neither rifle is the end all be all. Me personally I dislike the AR due to all the tiny parts and the carbon fouling. But the ARs are now cheap so I guess it's not a bad time to jump on the platform.
     
  23. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    The 7.62x51 does take things to another level, both in material (barrier penetration) destruction, and if expanding hunting ammo is used, on animal or human targets. In the latter sense it extends what the 7.62x39 can do to an animal or human target out to 400 yards or more, and at closer ranges is going to be much more decisive.
     
  24. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    Dunno about undoubtably more accurate platform. The specs for an issue GI M4 are not even close to one or even two moa. Commercial offerings vary, and of course it depends on matching ammo with rifle. At least the traditional ( leaving out the rear receiver cover rails) optics mounts for AKs are not as rigid as those firmly mounted to a top rail AR-15, and fixed iron sights tend to be cruder. But many folk get very practical accuracy with the better AK platforms factory standard. Ultimately it is a question of purpose.

    If you are looking for a rifle that will consistently shoot 2 moa or better you will need to spend a certain amount of money, or build one with appropriate components. If you want a combat self defense weapon, both can be be suitable since 1-2 moa is not necessary.
     
  25. MTMilitiaman

    MTMilitiaman Member

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    No. So-called "hydrostatic shock" is a misnomer. It should be "hydro-dynamic shock," and even then, it is just a term used to describe the travel of kinetic energy through a liquid medium. All tissue is a liquid-based medium. Energy travels faster through higher density mediums. And in point of fact, these forces are evident in higher density mediums and solids. You can throw a pebble into clay and observe these forces, as long as you do at hundreds of fps, and in fact, the NIJ still uses clay to observe and judge these forces when rating body armor.

    Yes, terminal ballistics is a complicated subject because of the complexity of living organisms. We get that. That doesn't mean we have to let you get away with confusing something's existence for its effectiveness. We assume as a general rule that doing more tissue damage increases the chances for rapid incapacitation, and that generally rounds that create hydrostatic shock are more effective on thin-skinned mammals than rounds that don't. Hydrostatic shock, again, if that is what we are going to call it, is what makes rifles more effective than handguns.

    Nobody said anything about yawing in flight. Where do you get this stuff? Such a suggestion is asinine. In fact I specifically clarified "in mediums more dense than air." Learn to read.


    The M855 requires 2700 fps to fragment reliably (more than 50% of the time) and fragments almost never below 2500 fps. There is a popular chart posted somewhere on AR-15.com showing the range at which various barrel lengths achieve this velocity. Between 14.5 and 20 inches, that falls around 140 to 180 yards, respectively, as I mentioned. Again, you just don't read very well, do you?

    No it is you who repeatedly mis-reads and mis-interprets information. I was in fact mostly agreeing with you, just simply stating that the 5.56's higher velocity resulted in an increased probability of hydrostatic shock damage beyond the range at which the x39 drops below the 2000 fps threshold that appears to be necessary for cavitation damage from these forces. This is not exact and depends on the density of the medium being traveled through, which is why at velocities approaching 3000 fps, they can damage bone. I've seen x-rays of a 55 gr 5.56 where the bullet missed the femur, but the femur was shattered. Now these forces are not completely reliable, nothing is, living bodies are complex. But a round that creates "hydrostatic shock" is probably going to do more damage than a round that doesn't, and a round that creates more damage is probably going to be more effective than a round that does less damage. And in fact, the 5.56 is legal for hunting deer in MT and has been for decades, and is actually quite popular for use by game wardens on deer culling operations around here.
    I took all the time to spell it out in crayon for you and you either lack the ability to read or refused to do so. That makes you a rather helpless case, I am afraid...
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2017
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