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"New" SKS vs. AR Thread

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Speedo66, Dec 12, 2016.

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  1. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    The fact is, there is not an optical mount for the SKS that is even close to what is available for the AR.
    Open sights are fine at close range or under ideal circumstances but overall from 0-100+ yds a red dot or holographic sight will be faster and more accurate.
     
  2. Browning

    Browning Member

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    Yeah, it was about the same length of time (meaning rd count) for me too when I got my first RDS (an EOTech 512 in 2006).

    I put the upper rd counts as the probable rd count for someone who'd never touched a rifle period.

    It's not in your head if it's a measurable time and it takes you longer to do one than the other.
     
  3. salt&battery

    salt&battery Member

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    werent EOTechs overpriced junk and they had the decency to refund money on a few models? I think you guys talked me into using some of the red dots I got. I will put one on my caulking gun to speed up caulking windows :evil:
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2016
  4. Browning

    Browning Member

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    A few EOTech models had issues with a Point of Aim vs Point of Impact shifts related to very cold climates or very humid ones and weren't the best red dot sight suited for the needs of some of the Special Warfare troops listed in the action filed. Most importantly they falsified their findings on these issues to the DOD and then got caught at it. That was enough to get them sued and make them honor returns.

    I never had issues with either of mine but I don't live in the arctic regions of Canada or a steamy jungle in Columbia.

    Try saying the same thing with evidence to back it up about Aimpoint or Trijicon. :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2016
  5. Inebriated

    Inebriated Member

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    You don't have to run an arbitrary 5000 rounds and spend $20k to learn how to get the most out of a red dot. You could acclimate and get a lot of efficiency in your sight picture right from your living room with dry fire drills.

    And the optic blocking FOV wouldn't be an issue if you used both eyes open. You'll notice the optic body, you will probably even focus on it until you're acclimated, but the whole concept behind using a red dot is having both eyes open, using your non-dominant eye to see down range, and your dominant eye is just there to see the dot for your brain to merge onto the image the other eye is giving. Run one of your red dots with a lens cap on the front, completely blacking out the view through the optic, and you'll still be able to make your hits... if you're using it correctly.

    You've called perceived advantages with the red dot a placebo effect at least three times in this thread, but if you've not done yourself the service of actually getting the most proficiency you can out of one, how can you really know how real and dramatic, or otherwise, your performance could be? You've already got four of them, if they're setup ideally and you aren't having to fish for the dot, start doing some drills in the living room with them. Online "shot timers" are completely free, and so is a small piece of tape stuck on the wall in a safe direction. I'll leave it at that without turning this thread even further off topic, but if you are interested in learning the dot better, put a thread up in the sights forum and you'll get plenty of good information.
     
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  6. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

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    Who says there's never been an argument which is better, not that we're arguing here. I would take issue with some of your assumptions, such as AR superiority in feed reliability, material quality, and functional reliability. Never heard anybody complain about SKS congenital reliability or feeding problems. I have about AR's. SKS material quality is all it needs to be, with most versions having chrome lined barrels. As far as consistency of manufacture, almost all SKS parts, regardless of country of origin, will interchange. SKS parts are also readily available online.

    SKS's must be desirable or the prices wouldn't have risen as they have. There are other milsurps out there which haven't gone up as rapidly as they have.

    AR's do have some advantages, but certainly not all the one's you've mentioned.
     
  7. FL-NC

    FL-NC Member

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    When the SKS rifles were $75 at the gun show, they were a good bargain. Most in my neck of the woods were bought for range toys, truck guns, or budget deer rifles. I think those 3 roles are where they do best today (except maybe not as a truck gun cause they cost so much more now- I would try to find something cheaper). All that said, its hard to beat a good $500 AR from a company like Del-Ton or S&W, given the ammo availability and quality upgrade accessories available at a reasonable price like mags, rails, lights, optics, etc. If essentially the same gun is used almost exclusively by our LE and military to do such serious work, how could a civilian go wrong?
     
  8. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    I've still got some $69.00 SKS rifles and I doubt I'll part with anymore, they are tough functional guns but I can't imagine paying today's prices for any of the variants.
     
  9. Manny

    Manny Member

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    Very Nice! First time I ever saw an SKS I'd be interested in owning.
     
  10. sarduy

    sarduy Member

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    both rifles are great for what they do, the SKS is a work horse not many features our of the box, a little heavier and somewhat difficult to mount a red dot/scope, the AR is cheap nowadays, and you can build one tailor to your needs, Pistol, Carbine, Rifle and everything in between with thousands of accessories. ammo is lighter and mags are under every rock. so for a first choice, i would go with an AR but i would not feel under gun with an SKS.
     
  11. shiftyer1

    shiftyer1 Member

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    I have several sks rifle's......I also own a few 1894 Winchester's. While they work differently THEY WORK........But ar's, well they are pretty adaptable! And they work to.
     
  12. salt&battery

    salt&battery Member

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    thanks for the info but I have tried them and for me I am much faster with ghost ring and an open rail. I keep both eyes open with the irons just at close range. I am not going into combat where 1/3 of a second might matter if my batteries are not dead lol. when bushnell first came out with the first one a while ago they showed one on a shotgun shooting skeet and ducks. I tried it and it was horrible for me and everyone I was with. unobstructed vent rib the best for skeet and for me it carries over to the AR. you do have a good way to practice without firing I will give it a try
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2016
  13. azrocks

    azrocks Member

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    Think... harder...
    Well, you've obviously heard lots of things.

    Just curious... how many quality ARs have you personally owned? How many SKS's?

    I'm not sure what you mean by 'SKS quality is all it needs to be', but if you're going to be comparing the two (which was, might I remind you, the entire purpose of your thread), then quality of build would seem to be a useful parameter.

    As far as increasing prices, that's simply supply and demand, or rather... waning demand temporarily outpaced by rapidly decreasing supply.

    Even if we did agree that SKS quality is all that it needs to be and that they run as well as modern ARs (we don't agree, but just to pretend)... that still leaves you with a rifle that's unnecessarily heavy, has limited ammo capacity (without hack modifications), is much less accurate, is difficult to properly equip with optics, and has limited aftermarket support compared to ARs. I'm not sure about you, but in my mind, that makes the AR a clear winner, especially when we throw price out the window as you suggest.

    As I said before - the only real advantage the SKS ever had was price, and the only reason anyone every chose an SKS over an AR is that they A) already had enough ARs, B) Couldn't justify the price of an AR, or C) Lived in a locale where ARs would be restricted, or D) Cared more for aesthetics & wood stocks than performance.
     
  14. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

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    I own a PSA upper kit on an Anderson lower, and a Norinco SKS, just one of each, and enjoy both. They both work fine, have not had any problems with either. The AR I've had for less than a year, the SKS was a $99 gun show score, so you can imagine how old that is. lol Both basic rifles.

    When I say the SKS quality is "all it needs to be", I mean it's not necessary to change out parts, it works well as is. It's a bullet proof, no pun intended, design that works well for it's intended purpose as a combat rifle. No weak parts, no finicky design, and certainly nothing fancy.

    As far as aftermarket support, there are hundreds of vendors online selling SKS parts. No, nothing like titanium take down pins to lose a couple of grains of weight, but any number of parts from any number of countries that will work.

    The AR has had the advantage of being a newer design, but newer is not always better, and the AR had some teething problems initially.

    While the AR has certain advantages of lighter weight and replaceable magazines, I wouldn't, as others have mentioned, feel undergunned with an SKS. I trained in basic with an M-14 and admit to having a certain affinity for wood and blued steel rather than plastic and aluminum. I think a butt stroke with an AR would be embarrassing and probably destructive to it. lol
     
  15. azrocks

    azrocks Member

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    Think... harder...
    That's all well & good. I see your logic and agree with most of what you said. But...

    Your original thread asked to compare the AR vs the SKS based on their merits alone - with price taken completely out of the equation - as a defensive firearm.

    To that end,you can believe what you want, but I think there's probably a pretty good reason neither our military, nor one single law enforcement agency nationwide (that I'm aware of), has ever armed their departments with the SKS. And unlike normal folk, when police get into it, it's usually with a lot of backup on their side.

    Any teething problems the AR had (which is not a new design by any stretch of the imagination) have been addressed by now. The Stoner platform has been America's gun since the Vietnam war. I'm thinking that in 50 years of nearly exclusive use as our nation's favored infantry rifle, it's bound to be a bit more evolved as a fighting weapon than the SKS.

    I have no doubt an SKS would serve most people's needs in a defensive rifle just fine (since most people will never need a defensive rifle in the first place). But this thread wasn't about what's 'good enough'.
     
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  16. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

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    Thanks for your comments, this is exactly the type of dialog I was looking for when I first posted.

    As far as the military adapting it, well, first of all it's basically an "enemy" rifle, and it would be un-American not to have our military-industrial complex reap the profits of rearming the entire military with a new gun.

    As far as the police, I wouldn't doubt that for many years in small dep'ts where officers furnished their own rifles that there were SKS's riding in the trunks of some patrol cars. An American police dept. could never officially adopt a commie rifle no matter how good it was.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2016
  17. Holmes375

    Holmes375 Member

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    I entered law enforcement in the early 80s (rural SO). Never saw an SKS in a patrol car but that doesn't mean it didn't happen.

    Many rural departments back then were sporting the Mini 14 in various configurations.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
  18. easyrider604

    easyrider604 Member

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    The AR platform is arguably the better choice for all the good reasons stated in previous posts. I've always believed that, having used the military versions in a past life.

    But from my Canadian perspective, where currently you can buy 4 SKS for every AR, and 7.62x39 is still 30% cheaper than the cheapest .223 ammo, the disparity cannot be ignored. Since most of us shooters are not made of money, much as I like the AR, I picked the SKS for my SHTF rifles.

    I don't see Seal Team 6 assaulting my house, so for the most likely defensive scenarios, I believe the SKS should be more than capable. The first ten shots will probably determine the winner, so 30 Rd mags may not really matter. Besides my Mossy 500s, Glock 17 and 1911s would be my primary home defense tools.
     
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  19. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

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    Good point.
     
  20. Ohio Gun Guy

    Ohio Gun Guy Member

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    I came to say this^
     
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  21. Zoogster

    Zoogster Member

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    Speedo666 said:
    Yes in CA. The 'grenade launcher' that comes on a typical Yugo is not allowed and must be removed or modified to be legal. Additionally any sks that has a removable magazine in CA managed to be banned as an assault weapon, unique among all other semi auto rifles in that it is banned even without qualifying by feature or being specifically named.
    So the SKS is actually one of the most restricted rifles in CA, but is entirely legal in stock configuration if it does not have a rifle grenade launcher, that little cup many people don't even realize is for that purpose.
    But you cannot modernize it to take detachable magazines.
    A good reliable SKS that takes detachable magazines while not true to any historical use gives you a rifle built better than most AKs with the main feature that makes the AK better (though the SKS is heavier) in my opinion. More accurate and able to use the mass produced widely available and durable AK-47 magazines.
    In CA it must remain stripper fed only, but any identical rifle would not be classified as an unlawful assault weapon and could use detachable magazines (of only 10 rounds) as it contains no prohibited features. Hence why I say more restricted.


    In places that can still buy Chinese surplus the cost of 7.62x39 can be cheaper than .223/5.56 ammunition. Unfortunately the USA is not one of them, and our government classifies most common semi auto rifle cartridges as handgun ammo which bans its importation if made with cost saving materials under the armor piercing handgun ammunition ban. (Combined with lead free ammo requirements some places the two combine to ban the majority of materials that are inexpensive and effective as projectiles.)
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
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  22. NoirFan

    NoirFan Member

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    I don't think anyone can really argue that the SKS is a superior practical and fighting rifle - and in this thread, I don't think anyone has. That said, I still like the SKS better. It was the first centerfire rifle I ever shot so there's that sentimental value. Plus, it just feels great to shoot it: a loud BANG and then the heavy bolt slamming back and forth, like a serious industrial machine. The AR makes a POP and then a pogo-stick rattle. With Tech-Sights on the SKS it's a real pleasure to shoot at 100 - 250 yards. The AR for whatever reason just doesn't have the same satisfaction for me.

    The SKS is also all one piece, no magazines to buy or fiddle with. When you run empty you just push in more bullets with your thumb. I like that simplicity. It reminds me of shooting my other favorite guns: revolvers and pump shotguns. Sure the fixed mag is a disadvantage in a fighting rifle, but that's not why I would own an SKS anyway.
     
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  23. kBob

    kBob Member

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    So I have to ask the Canadians.......are there any differences in the currently available SKS from China and the ones from the 1980's? Has there ammo improved?
    Still corrosive as all get out?

    Chinese ammo was the WORST available although for a bit practaclly the only available M43 ammo in the US. The Czech I had before the Chinese began imports seemed better later the Russian commercial stuff seemed better, but for me the best ever was Lapua which I just don't see anymore.

    It seemed to me accuracy increased when the cleaning rod and bayonet were removed. Some said remove the cleaning kit as well......so like Chicharrones I spent a minute or two wondering if I had just put my finger into some sort of Red Chinese plot to de digitize America via the cleaning kit butt "TRAP"

    I keep meaning to spring for an apperature rear sight, but other things take priority. Funny thing is a buddy and I played with a fixed rear peep to test the concept back in the early 1990's before one was on the market. As I had the sight adjustment tool that could push the front sight as well as unscrew the post this fixed was all I felt I needed. Free tip, duct tape only works for a few rounds.....but proved the concept.

    Back during the first AW ban fight SKSs sold like hot cakes and one local gunshop offered a special on a SKS and two cans of ammo. Ran into a guy that I had seen across the street getting such a deal later in the hardware store......where he was buying a brand new shovel and a roll of heavy duty trash bags. Humorous, eh?

    -kBob
     
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  24. tahunua001

    tahunua001 Member

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    the AR is much better for many reasons that I am currently too lazy or too tired to write right now. however I would still take the SKS over an AK any day of the week.
     
  25. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    And in the eastern Ukraine insurgency, or in the early 1990's Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia, Herzo- conflicts (as a basic SKS rifle, Not as a grenade-launcher)?

    Some Ukrainian military/militia prisoners were photographed marching under guard by people with SKS rifles.
    How well did the rifle function on either side in that urban environment?

    Did either side use it as a primary rifle, or only where AK 74s or 47s were not available? Looking fwd. to any info, if any such info is somehow available.

    NoirFan: an my old Chinese SKS a TS200 Tech Sight was installed, and the rear aperture unit was moved low enough to prevent raising the front post.
    What you saw was the front post tuip centered within Both the sight hood circle, and the aperture circle. Looked so easy an natural. A ring inside the outer ring. So quick to aim.

    But on my Yugo M59 the same exact type of TS200 will Not go low enough to prevent raising the front post. For 50 yard shooting only....
    The post is so high now that it is Not centered in the middle of the hood; squashed near the upper part of the hood's circle, and doesn't look quite right.
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2016
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