AK-47 Noob
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Thread: AK-47 Noob

  1. #1
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    AK-47 Noob

    I'm totally new to the gun scene in general, but I'm interested in the AK-47.

    I'm interested mainly because it's got the reputation for being tough, reliable, and rather inexpensive as compared to other assault rifles.

    It seems that I might need to step up this interest because of the threat of them disappearing with the incoming leadership.


    Saying one is searching for an AK-47 is kinda like saying I'm going to buy a large truck.

    How large of a truck? 1/2 ton, 3/4 ton, 1 ton?
    Made by who? Ford? Dodge? Toyota?
    Diesel? Stick Shift? 4wd?



    It seems as though there are just as many variations on the AK.

    Origin Country? Hungarian, Bulgarian, Chinese, Soviet...
    Caliber? 5.45 X 39, 7.62 X 39
    etc etc etc...

    I'm wondering if there's any collection of info that's available all in one place so that I have a one stop place to compare...

    Are parts interchangeable between one country's AK and another? Can I swap out barrels if I want to try the larger caliber? Who's AK has the latest advancements and which one is more rugged or dependable? What'm I gonna spend on different types?

    Maybe a collector's site or something?


    I've never even shot one, so I don't know if I'll even like it. I don't know of any place around here that'll rent me one to try out.

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  3. #2
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    Green Valley (Henderson) NV
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pele View Post
    I'm totally new to the gun scene in general, but I'm interested in the AK-47.

    I'm interested mainly because it's got the reputation for being tough, reliable, and rather inexpensive as compared to other assault rifles.

    It seems that I might need to step up this interest because of the threat of them disappearing with the incoming leadership.

    It seems as though there are just as many variations on the AK.

    Origin Country? Hungarian, Bulgarian, Chinese, Soviet...
    You'll get a large variety of answers on that one.

    Caliber? 5.45 X 39, 7.62 X 39
    5.45x39mm is presently less expensive than 7.62x39mm, however it is easier to obtain 7.62x39mm. I have only seen AK variants in 5.45x39mm, .223/5.56mm, 7.62x39mm. I believe there are variants in .308 Winchester/7.62x51mm. Your 5.45x39mm AKs are AK-74s.
    I'm wondering if there's any collection of info that's available all in one place so that I have a one stop place to compare...

    Are parts interchangeable between one country's AK and another?
    Typically yes. If you want to modify your AK variant to let's say replace the thumb hole stuck with a folder or collapsible, you need to have 6 USA made parts to make it 18 USC 922(r) compliant. I'm going to be doing that with my MAK-90. I'm going to replace the trigger, parts and the furniture (slang for stock, grip and forearm/handguard). If you replace parts on an AK variant, you want to use USA made parts, not different foreign parts. If you build an AK using foreign parts, you must use 5 or 6 USA made parts to be compliant under 18 USC 922(r). If you buy a canned rifle, the importer/maker should be able to tell you how many USA parts are in the rifle you're buying. I know my MAK-90 is little to no USA made parts so I need to replace 6 parts if I want to use my stock of choice with it.
    Can I swap out barrels if I want to try the larger caliber?
    From a practical standpoint, no. It's just as labor intensive as building a rifle from a parts kit and may require a gunsmith to remove the barrel on your premade AK to avoid damaging it. AKs are not like AR variants where you can replace the upper half with a different caliber. If caliber conversion is a high priority you should be looking at an AR. On ARs, you just change the upper receiver and the magazine. MGI makes a quick change AR-15 upper receiver where the barrel assembly easily removes from the upper. Just replace the barrel assembly and bolt carrier assembly and you have it converted to another caliber.
    Who's AK has the latest advancements and which one is more rugged or dependable?
    They're all going to be basically the same. They're all the same gas operated piston design. There are some minor variances in the trigger parts. I am no AK variant expert. I just have one that I purchased back in 1994 that I want to pimp out while it's still legal to do so under 18 USC 922(r). If there's time and money available I might build another one out of a parts kit while it's still legal.
    What'm I gonna spend on different types?
    Whatever the market dictates now.
    Maybe a collector's site or something?
    Go to ar15.com and look into the AK forums. Make sure if you buy an AK that it does not have the third hole in the receiver for the full auto sear or you may be in for a world of hurt from BATFE as they are considered to be machine guns.
    Know the law; don't ask, don't tell.
    NRA & UT Certified Instructor; CT, FL, NH, NV, OR, PA & UT CCW Holder
    Happy new 1984; 25 years behind schedule. Send lawyers, guns and money...the SHTF...

  4. #3
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    Would I be able to get a license to have it if I inadvertently purchase an ATF bait 3 holed receiver?

    What else do I have to worry about regarding the legality of the weapon... Foldable stocks, Thumbhole stocks, muzzle brakes, suppressors, bayonet lug, etc. A lot that I've seen on gunbroker.com have the bayonet lug ground off.

    I'm definitely considering a milled receiver, as I work on car parts and have experience running a CNC milling machine. I know that milled billet metals are better than stamped sheet metals.

    The MAK-90 is the Chinese variant, right?

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pele View Post
    Would I be able to get a license to have it if I inadvertently purchase an ATF bait 3 holed receiver?
    Nope. It would have to be an ATFE Form 3 on or prior to May 19, 1986. ATFE considers all three hole receiver AK variants to be class III/NFA firearms. If you managed to get ahold of one that's on an ATFE form 3 that's civilian transferable you should be able to legally put the auto sear parts in it. Whether you get charged with a crime or not for possessing a MAK-90 with a three hole receiver that is not on an ATFE form 3 will be dependent upon the ATFE agent that caught you with an illegal machine gun. If you're lucky, they'll just disappear with your auto capable AK variant and you won't get charged with a crime.
    What else do I have to worry about regarding the legality of the weapon... Foldable stocks, Thumbhole stocks, muzzle brakes, suppressors, bayonet lug, etc. A lot that I've seen on gunbroker.com have the bayonet lug ground off.
    To be compliant with 18 USC 922(r) you need six US parts in it for a legal AK build or modifying your AK variant. Here's the GunWiki site which explains 18 USC 922(r) in detail. The furniture (stocks, grip, and forearm/handguard) count as three parts. Replace the trigger, disconnector and hammer now you can do whatever you want with the rifle. You just need six US made parts. Once I replace the trigger, disconnector and hammer on mine with USA made parts, I'm just going to dump them on auctionarms or gunbroker along with the furniture. Since I can't use them anymore, no point in having them in my possession to get bitten by a possible 18 USC 922(r) violation. Bayonet lugs are legal if you have six other US made parts providing you have no State AWB that prohibits them.
    The MAK-90 is the Chinese variant, right?
    If it's from Norinco yes. Most MAK-90s are Chinese. It's some of the earlier Chinese MAK-90s have the three hole receiver. I know from the serial number that the year of manufacture is 1994. It does not have a three hole receiver. With your AR variants, there are no modifications that need to be made to the receiver for it to be burst or full auto, you just drop in the parts. For AK variants, there's an additional hole in the receiver above the trigger guard/magazine release.
    Know the law; don't ask, don't tell.
    NRA & UT Certified Instructor; CT, FL, NH, NV, OR, PA & UT CCW Holder
    Happy new 1984; 25 years behind schedule. Send lawyers, guns and money...the SHTF...

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