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Question about SKS (Norinko, Yugo, Albanian, Russian)

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by silent knight, Dec 20, 2006.

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  1. silent knight

    silent knight Member

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    Are they worth it, i wonder how used these guns are. Keep in mind that i am in California so prices here are rediculous. A yugo goes for $250 while the Norinko Chinese go for almost 300? Are they worth it??
     
  2. weaselchew

    weaselchew Member

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    I really like my Yugo (59/66), although I paid half that since I'm not in the P.R.K. Some people like the different variations more than others. The Russian ones are the originals, but are also quite expensive (can't imagine what they'd be in Cali if those are your prices) I prefer the milled versions over stamped, so I'm not into the Norincos, every Norinco I've seen in person has been stamped - there were milled Norincos made, if I'm not mistaken.
    From what I understand, Albanian SKSes are fairly uncommon. I have yet to see one myself.

    Do a search for "SKS", you'll find more info than you can imagine on the subject.
     
  3. Ohio Rifleman

    Ohio Rifleman Member

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    $250 for a Yugo SKS is absolutely insane. I'd suggest posting an ad here on THR, where you'll get a more reasonable price from a fellow member. I personally own a Yugo, and I very much enjoy it, everyone should have at least one SKS. :neener: I'm not certain about the legality of buying an SKS from someone out of state in the PRK. Every day, I'm thankful I live in the free state of Ohio.
     
  4. illini52

    illini52 Member

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    Russians will be the most expensive. Then the Norincos.
    Yugos should be the cheapest and I wouldn't pay over $150 for one as they can be had unissued for somewhere around $160 from the surplus places.

    I forgot to add that I love all my Russians!
     
  5. go_bang

    go_bang Member

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    I used to have a Russian Tula Aresenal SKS a few years back. They are decent guns. I have a few gripes with them. My biggest is that it's difficult to keep the magazine loaded without having a round chambered. You would have to push down the rounds in the mag while slowly moving the bolt over the top of them a bit. The bolts are stiffy sprung, so if it slips it's a good way to injure a finger. Also the only safetly is the piece of metal you flip up to block the trigger. My next biggest gripe is that you can't mount much of a scope on them because the brass is ejected almost straight up.
     
  6. Frog48

    Frog48 Member

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    $250 for a SKS is nuts. I got mine for $139 in new/unissued condition at Cabelas.

    If I were you, I'd find someone out of state that sells them at good prices, and have an FFL transfer it to you.
     
  7. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    The HUGE mitigating factor on those prices are.... you are in California.

    Not nearly as many options as most places for anything remotely resembling an EBR. So considering all that.... it might be "worth it" for somebody specifically in a "live in CA" situation. I like mine, for what it's worth (I'm not in CA though, and only paid about half that much).


    But yeah, you're going to get a lot of people in the thread saying "wow!" to those prices that aren't in that situation. Many of these people also got in on the $80 or $90 a gun gravy train from awhile back, which will make them say "double wow!". Lastly, if you see an Albanian for anywhere near those prices, grab it; they're pretty collectible for true SKS aficionados.
     
  8. kfranz

    kfranz Member

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    Some are very used, others are unused. Yugo's are readily available in unissued condition. I just picked up a NIB Chicom from an estate, and so many of them were sold that it isn't uncommon to find them. The Albanian I paid $50 for is pretty well used...
     
  9. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    $50? :eek:

    Maybe they're not as collectible as I thought. I thought there weren't many around.
     
  10. BoySetsTheFire

    BoySetsTheFire Member

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    The Chinese Norinco is worth $300 (unissued). I paid $129 for an unissued Norinco, back in the late 80s. As far as a used SKS, you would have to gauge the muzzle and throat, as well as general condition before buying.
     
  11. Mac Attack

    Mac Attack Member

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    Wow I didn't know that SKS prices have gone up so much. I bought my Norinco SKS back in the late eighty's and paid I believe $69 or $79 for it. :eek: It was the first firearm I ever purchased and even though I don't shoot it much it still holds much sentimental value to me. Back then you could buy 1,200 rounds for $100+. I must have put close to 10k rounds though it over the years. I can honestly say that I have not had a single problem with it other then the finish on the stock would become tacky after a days worth of shooting.
     
  12. DougB

    DougB Member

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    Yugo SKS's cost considerably more in California than in other states because to be legal here you have to remove or permanently cover the grenade launcher. This has to be done before it enters CA - you can't order one and do it yourself. Century welds a muzzle brake in its place. Some places weld a blued steel sleeve over it, or just remove it and leave the threads exposed. Anyway, this makes the super-cheap Yugo deals unavailable here, since only a few companies do the "CA conversion" and then only intermittently or by special order. Another thing to keep in mind is that the prices you see on the web for SKSs don't include shipping or local FFL fees. These will bump up the price considerably. I paid $500 for a pair of SKSs several years ago here (one Russian, the other a Chinese "paratrooper" - both in new condition). They were "on special" for $265 each. I felt like I got a pretty good deal. I think a CA-legal Yugo in very good or excellent condition for $250 is a decent deal. I don't think many, if any, more SKSs are currently being imported. I don't think any more Russian, Romanian, or Chinese have been imported for at least several years. So if you want an SKS, I doubt you are going to find a much better deal in CA - unless (1) you find a private seller who bought one back when they were much cheaper and doesn't realize the current value, or (2) they find another warehouse full of them someplace and start importing cheap CA-legal ones again.

    Are they worth it? If you want a semi-auto military-style rifle in CA, there aren't too many other options, and none I can think of that are close to even current SKS prices. So I think they are still a good value. Other options, like the Mini 14/30 or Kel-Tec SU-16 are in the $475-$650 range. M1As are 2-3 times that. There are a few other options (M1 carbine, Garand, fixed mag AR or FAL, etc), but none that approach the affordability of the SKS. I'm not implying that the SKS is the equivalent of these, but it is a dependable semi-auto centerfire rifle. I also suspect that that expensive $250 Yugo SKS you buy today will be worth more in a couple of years (barring #2 above).

    Doug
     
  13. kfranz

    kfranz Member

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    I scored a killer deal when AIM was blowing out their beaters. You won't likely find another for that price.
     
  14. ZeSpectre

    ZeSpectre Member

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    Hate to break it to ya guys, but at a recent gun show (last weekend) I saw VERY FEW SKS rifles around and of the ones I saw, not one of them was going for less than $220.00 (no willingness to negotiate on the part of the seller). Saw a nice unissued Norenco that somebody wanted $375.00 for.
     
  15. dfaugh

    dfaugh Member

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    To get the best deal, even in CA, the Yugos are probably you're best bet. $250 isn't crazy considering you have to have the grenade launcher removed/replaced, etc. (although I paid $129 for an unissued one at Dunham's a coupla years ago)

    Alot of people don't like the Norincos, but mine is easily as well made as any other SKS, easily as good as my Yugo (and the Yudos are the only ones without a chrome-lined bore, which the Norincos DO have). Supposedly the Russians are the best, but all of the ons that I've seen were in pretty rough shape.

    I would say, given the Yugo vs. Norinco, I'd pay the extra $50 for the Norinco. Especially if you can find a Paratrooper (short barrel) model, that would be worth another $100 or so.

    In CA you're gonna pay more, so why not get the best that you can?

    Last Gunshow here they still had "new in wrap" (and cases) of Yugos for $159. Gunshow in 3 weeks, hope the're still available, I'd like to pick up another to "customize" (doing the 10 foreign parts routine, of course.)
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2006
  16. Lonestar.45

    Lonestar.45 Member

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    Yep. I have noticed the same thing here. The window of cheap unissued Yugos is closing fast. All the SKS's are going up in price. Russians are now $300+ in my area. Chinese $200+.

    I attribute it to the stream of imports slowing to a trickle now. The latest ones coming in are beat up shooters I've noticed. If you want a nice/near new Yugo SKS, and you find one locally for under $200, you have done good.
     
  17. silent knight

    silent knight Member

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    I noticed some of you said that you can actually get one NIB.. the dealer told me that there's "no such thing as a new SKS, all are used".. the Norinco i saw was much shorter than the Yugo, and much lighter, the Albanian looked very used.
     
  18. DougB

    DougB Member

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    I've bought a few SKSs that I think qualify as "New In Box," but most were imported years ago (probably the 80s or early 90s) and had been in dealers or private inventories since then. These were new rifles in their original printed commercial boxes. I've seen a few NIB Chinese SKSs at gun shows a few years ago (they were obviously new in box with form-fitted foam packing) - also probably imported quite awhile before. I've also seen some fairly recent Yugo SKSs that appeared to be in excellent (unused) condition, but they probably came from military inventories, so they probably wouldn't technically qualify as NIB. I don't think any really new commercial SKSs have been imported for years, so finding one NIB would mean finding one that was purchased years ago and never used. A more likely, and probably cheaper scenario would be to look for one of the more recent imports in "excellent/unissued" condition. These will probably show a few marks from handling and storage, but be in virtually new condition.

    Doug
     
  19. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    $250 for a Yugo?

    Turners has them for $180-200, you pick from the selection at the regular retail store.

    http://www.turners.com/

    Rule #1 of California gun shows: don't buy anything.:p
     
  20. silent knight

    silent knight Member

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    None here

    None of the Turners around here have any in stock.. so the best thing is for me to ask if they're "unissued"?
     
  21. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    Or just wait until after Christmas.

    Unissued would be the best, if you can get them.

    Note that there are no 59's left, AFAIK. You'll be getting a 59/66 modified for California (grenade launcher replaced with muzzle brake).
     
  22. silent knight

    silent knight Member

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    Thanks for all the feedback.
     
  23. karlsgunbunker

    karlsgunbunker Member

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    Pay the extra for the Norinco. It has a chromed chamber and bore. Well worth the $50 difference IMHO
     
  24. Juna

    Juna Member

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    FWIW I handled one at a local pawn shop for $139 that had a black polymer stock with thumb hole & a cheap scope. Not sure what the country of origin was, but the gun looked like it was in great shape (and it obviously had been modified with aftermarket stock).
     
  25. tinygnat219

    tinygnat219 Member

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    The deals are out there, but you have to look for them. I bought my "shooter" Chinese SKS for 159.00. I bought another Chinese SKS for 150.00 as an impulse buy / investment and sold it the same day at the same show for 180.00. I bought a slightly rusted shooter grade Yugo for 70 bucks. I bought my Albanian for 245.00.

    Also, if you have a C&R and haven't sent it to Century Arms (one of the biggest importer of these weapons) then you can't see the deals when you login. They don't have anymore "NIB" or "Exc" grade Yugo SKS rifles anymore. The supplies are finally drying up.
     
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