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SKS 7,62x39mm vs 223

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by 22/22mag, Nov 21, 2004.

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  1. 22/22mag

    22/22mag Member

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    Chinese SKS w/30 rd mags or 223 assault rifle ,what would be the advantage of each rifle.Thanks
     
  2. rust collector

    rust collector Member

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    Both leave a lot to be desired

    What will you be doing with it?

    SKS aftermarket mags don't work very well according to many reports I've read (mine uses original 10 rounder) and .223 is a little light for hunting stuff bigger than varmints. Both are major fun, but utility depends on application.
     
  3. benEzra

    benEzra Moderator Emeritus

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    Be aware that unless the SKS was already in a detachable-magazine configuration prior to 1991, changing it to take 30-rounders would most likely be a felony violation of 18 USC 922(r), as I understand it. Pre-'91 hi-caps probably aren't all that common. (I think 1991 was the year, or was it '89? Somebody jog my memory here.)

    My wife has a Russian SKS (1952 Tula, 10-round fixed magazine) and you can reload suprisingly fast. But if you have your heart set on using 30-rounders, an AK lookalike would probably be a better choice.

    7.62x39 is just barely powerful enough for deer, if that's a consideration for you, as long as the deer are fairly close; the bullet drops below 1000 ft-lb kinetic energy after only 125 yards, so per that rule of thumb you'd want to keep your shots inside that range. It's ballistically fairly similar to the .30-30 Winchester, though a shade less powerful.

    .223 is not generally considered suitable for deer, though in the hands of an expert hunter, at close range, in a state that allows deer hunting with a .22-caliber rifle...maybe. But I wouldn't. On the other hand, if you're interested in longer-range target shooting, a .223 is a better long-range cartridge (very similar ballistics to a .270 Winchester, although much less powerful); 7.62x39 is a low-velocity round with a trajectory like a rainbow. .223 is a little more versatile for home-defense, since fragile varmint-hunting rounds like 40-grain JHP's are available that don't penetrate much (relatively speaking) in building materials.

    BTW, terminologically speaking, true "assault rifles" aren't readily available; all selective-fire weapons are NFA Class III's and as such are extremely expensive, in addition to the legal hoops you have to jump through. (I know what you meant by it, but the media throws this term around so much that I cringe whenever a gunny uses it.)

    What is to be the rifle's main purpose? Plinking? Home defense? Competitive shooting? All of the above, with a little hunting thrown in? That will really determine your choice of caliber.
     
  4. mainmech48

    mainmech48 Member

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    Personally, I'd get the SKS and forget about the 30-rd mags. Unless you're willing to pay the substantial premium that the relatively few factory-built AK magazine models bring. It's tough to find aftermarket add-ons that will work reliably, and most of them won't allow you to use strippers to refill.

    A better option, IMO, would be one of the 20-rd replacement boxes that Kengs, etc. imported. They're now a bit harder to find (and more expensive, initially) than the 'detachable' stuff, but worth the effort. They are pretty easy to fit for reliable feeding by comparing with your stock mag's relationship to the receiver and adjusting the replacement to match.

    Compared to any military-style carbine in 5.56/.223, they're dirt-cheap. Ammo is plentiful and somewhat less expensive. The design is simple, rugged, easy to maintain and about as reliable as gravity. Many of them will shoot into 3" or less at 100 yds with iron sights and the right ammo. Some will do considerably better with a 'scope. Realistically, 3" is about as well as most people can do with open sights anyway.

    The 7.62x39 is legal for game up to and including whitetail deer in most states. It's easy on the shoulder and the wallet. For all practical purposes, it has the same general range limitations as the .223, but retains a good deal more oomph out there due to the heavier projectile. 300 meters is about as far as anyone can reasonably expect to identify a target with unaided vision in non-target range situations, so that's plenty.

    If you want the most practicality at the least price, a good SKS is mighty tough to beat. In a semi-auto centerfire, it's hard to even match.
     
  5. conan

    conan Member

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    Excellent point!
    Even kerry lied about this on national tv, and all the media does it.
     
  6. The Grand Inquisitor

    The Grand Inquisitor Member

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    I don't want to get too derailed here, but an "Assualt rifle" is whatever you want it to be; there are no standards to what makes an "assualt rifle", and there is no way to objectively decide what makes a rifle more or less "assualting".


    I would much rather have someone shooting at me with a fully automatic Uzi at 200 yards than someone shooting at me with a high end hunting rifle chambered in .338 Lapua.
     
  7. 22/22mag

    22/22mag Member

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    Thanks for the replys.Another question.. I think it is illegal to put a folding stock or pistol grip on my Chinese SKS so I am thinking of a Ruger mini 30, 7,62x39mm that I could do these changes .Wonder how the Rugar 30 mini in 7,62x39mm would compare to the Chinese SKS ? Thanks again.
     
  8. VG

    VG Member

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    If ytou can find an SKS that can shoot 3" groups at 100 yards, buy it on the spot.

    When I go to the range, lately there's always been someone with an SKS. They usually give up shooting at 100 yards after a while and put their targets at 50.

    Most USGI Garands won't shoot 3" five shot groups at 100 yards with good ammo. So if an SKS can, especially with Communist manufactured ammo, it's an extraordinary example.I'd think a repeatable five shot group of 5" at 100 yards would be about the best you could expect.

    The SKS is about the cheapest method of launching ceterfire cartridges in the general direction of an aiming point there is.
     
  9. benEzra

    benEzra Moderator Emeritus

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    For the term "assault weapon," that would be true, but "assault rifle" has historically been a more precise term, derived from the German Sturmgehwer (sp?), and generally referring to a selective-fire infantry rifle firing a cartridge intermediate in power between pistol rounds and full-power rifle cartridges, correct? So while a nontraditional-looking carbine might be dubbed an "assault weapon" by somebody's elastic definition, it wouldn't be an "assault rifle" per se unless it was selective-fire and fired an intermediate-power round.

    (Sorry, didn't mean to hijack the thread.)
     
  10. DF357

    DF357 Member

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    I'd have to disagree with this. I have a paratrooper SKS that I can regularly hit (nearly everytime) a clay pigeon at 100 yards.. what's that 4 inches?. I don't even consider that it won't hit it. If I miss, it's a surprise - and I'm no sniper. If I was a better marksman, I'm sure it would shoot 3" or less.

    I've also shot my son's Norinco, with the same success rate - as has he.

    My range is only 100 yds max so I can't say what it would do at longer ranges but it's better than I am at 100 yds. The likelyhood that we got two 'special' guns is pretty slim.
     
  11. AZ Jeff

    AZ Jeff Member

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    DF357 wrote:

    " I have a paratrooper SKS that I can regularly hit (nearly everytime) a clay pigeon at 100 yards.. what's that 4 inches?. I don't even consider that it won't hit it. If I miss, it's a surprise - and I'm no sniper. If I was a better marksman, I'm sure it would shoot 3" or less."

    That is absolutely AMAZING performance for an SKS, if you are shooting Communist/former Communist country sourced ammunition.

    Typical Combloc 7.62x39 ammo, when fired from a "Mann" barrel, will turn in groups of 4MOA or bigger. A Mann barrel pretty much removes human and machine inaccuracies from the equation, so that means the THEORETICAL accuracy of milsurp 7.62x39 is only about 4MOA.

    Now add in the inaccuracies of the rifle and shooter, and a typical SKS or AK does usually no better than 5-6MOA.

    Yes, commerical (US-made) ammo will do better than this, but most guys who own SKS's and AK's feed them the super-cheap Combloc surplus stuff.

    I will say this again--Combloc ammo is NOTORIOUS for being "minute of torso", and NOT precise.
     
  12. MAKOwner

    MAKOwner Member

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    The SKS with a "duckbill" 30rnd mag is a joke. Stick with the standard 10 rnd fixed mag if you want an SKS. It's also not in the price range of the other rifles in your comparison.

    A better question would be a standard AK-variant or a Mini30/14 style rifle? To which I would suggest you get an AK. It sounds like that's what you really want, an SKS is not a very good substitute for an AK when what you want is a "evil assualt weapon". You can also put a quality folding stock on an AK, something military in origin. The composite side folding SKS stocks are garbage IMO... Anyway, you should be able to get a decent Romanian or Chinese AK for the same price or cheaper than a Mini.


    As for the accuracy thing, people love to blow that out of proportion. You should be able to shoot right at a 4 inch group with a little effort. It's certainly NOT "amazing" to hit clay pigeons at 100 yards, that's ridiculous... 4 inches is no tack driver but that's perfectly fine for the intended use and will shoot the black out of most of any standard target, not to mention rip clay pigeons and tin cans to shreds at will in a plinking session. "Giving up" and retiring to 50 yard shooting is ridiculous... It's certainly not a tack driver but that is perfectly acceptable accuracy for a military type firearm with simple sights shooting ammo that's under 10 cents a pop... The Minis would do the same (if not worse...) with Wolf .223 or 7.62...
     
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