Saiga - AK confusion

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Roodles, Dec 14, 2010.

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  1. Roodles

    Roodles Member

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    I've recently bought an AK104 (I think) but I am confused about the saiga vs AK differences.

    Is this an AK or a Saiga, and which mags do I need?

    I assume, as the mag release is on the trigger guard, that it is an AK :scrutiny:

    Picture here

    Anyone know?

    On the receiver it says 'Made in Russia by Izmash'.
     
  2. kwelz

    kwelz Member

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    I think the terminology is what is confusing you. That is like asking if you have an AR15 or a Colt M4.

    Siagas are AKs. They are made at the Izhmash factory in Russia (as you know from your receiver stamping). When they are produced they are made in a hunting configuration suitable for import into the US. Once here they are converted by a number of companies including Arsenal.

    It uses standard AK mags and should work wonderfully.
     
  3. Roodles

    Roodles Member

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    Ok - thanks for that.

    It is all very confusing, I assume the saiga name is the civilian designation then :confused:
     
  4. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    Saiga is just the brand name under which the Izhmash factory sells the Kalashnikov rifles that they have modified to get around import laws in certain countries.
     
  5. John Parker

    John Parker Member

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    If you live in the UK, how'd you buy that rifle?
     
  6. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

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    John:
    Its probably a straight pull. No gas system.
     
  7. rogertc1

    rogertc1 member

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  8. Roodles

    Roodles Member

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    Yes it's a UK legal straight pull...


    Straight Pull AK

    The gas port was never drilled into the barrel, and the front of the gas system is a blank (it's solid, in fact).
     
  9. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

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    And since no one mentioned it on the magazine portion...

    If it's a true Saiga, it will not have a bullet guide as part of the gun, and will need Saiga mags.

    If it has been converted (as much as it can be), if UK-imported rifles aren't fed the same as US ones, or it otherwise does have a bullet guide for whatever reason, it will use AK mags. You can then modify any Saiga mags to function.

    If it does not have a guide (and if AK mags are cheaper in the UK than Saiga mags), consider doing about twenty minutes of smithing to use AK mags, for the ease of finding them.
     
  10. Roodles

    Roodles Member

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    Deus Machina, thanks.

    I'm quite sure it left the factory as per the picture in post #1.

    How do I know if the gun has a bullet guide as part of the gun? If I take out the mag, and have a look what should I see :confused:

    I'm confused again now :D
     
  11. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

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  12. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

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    ^^^

    If it has that flat piece with the allen screw in it (if it's factory, it's probably a rivet) it has a bullet guide, and the magazines are standard AK--the front lip of the magazine dips below the tips of the actual bullets.

    If it doesn't have that piece, it has no bullet guide, and the lip of the magazine is straight across-- it acts as a guide on its own.

    The guide may also be flat, instead of round. That may not be as common in x39's as the .223 rifles.
     
  13. Roodles

    Roodles Member

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    Thanks for that, I'll take a look. I'm hoping it will take standard AK mags, as they are cheap and plentiful :)
     
  14. sansone

    sansone Member

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    this is true.. Saiga mags are not as easily found as ak mags. They cost more too
     
  15. nalioth

    nalioth Member

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    Fixed that for you.

    European-bound Saigas are not neutered like ours are.
     
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