SKS or AK for the modern world as it is....

Discussion in 'Vintage Topic Archive (Sept - 2009)' started by neothespian, Feb 18, 2008.

  1. Yugo SKS (factory stock)

  2. Romanian AK-47 (Factory stock)

    0 vote(s)
  1. neothespian

    neothespian Member

    Now, I know that many around the US gun market will automatically say "AK!!!" Because it has a higher capacity ability right out of the box...


    I'm sitting down thinking of how to maximize my cash and match my needs for a new semi-auto rifle. I'm considering both designs and honestly I'm leaning towards the SKS, but I decided to get some outside imput on this. I've seen some stuff good and bad, and I have experienced the AK-47 for years. But, there are some points about the SKS that actually appeal to me. From what I've learned:

    The AK-47
    -Cheap ones go for about $350 to $450 (The Romanian designed). Some comments on the lack of build quality but the cheapest of the AK's
    -High magazine capacity out of the box
    -Detachable Mags
    -Accessories out the rear!
    -Durable rep, but shorter barrel and not the most accurate assualt rifles. (from personal experience)

    The SKS
    -Cheap ones go for about $149 to $189 (Yugoslavian designed). Lots of shooters love the build quality of these and are quoted as some of the best for the money
    -10 round stripper clip fixed mags, but don't take well to detachable mags. They have reliable 20 round fixed mags that have been rated well, but still have to be fed in.
    -Longer barrel and are touted to be alot more accurate and easier to fire for the shooter.
    -LOTS of accessories for these as well (As well as a handsome Bullpup stock).
    -Said to be VERY durable, and the most rifle-like.

    Now, the reason why I'm torn is because I'm not as good a shot as I used to be, and my health isn't the greatest. Any rifle that makes shooting easier on my body and helps in accuracy is more importiant than how many bullets I can throw downrange. 30 rounds don't mean jack when I can only land 10 of them. If I can improve that ratio with the SKS, then it's the better gun. Also, price is a HUGE factor. Both use the 7.62x39 so that's not an issue, but I can buy into the SKS for less than half of what the AK will cost. Also, the SKS fits my body better (Small frame with long, skinny arms). Even as a teenager I had a problem with the AK being a bit cramped. When I shouldered the SKS, it felt more like a proper fit. I know there are other aftermarket stocks for this, but if you don't like the gun in the stock configuration, you might be spending alot more money just to find that perfect fit.

    And, capacity isn't as much an issue for me personally. A 20 round fixed mag, while a pain in the rear to load, is said to be reliable and if the gun does have a better accuracy rate then I'm maximizing my ammo. From my experience the AK's are durable but it won't win any range tests.

    So, let the opinions begin!
  2. Strangerous

    Strangerous Member

    SKS hands down... unless you want a safe queen...

  3. I love SKS's to death... but the AK-47 is much smaller, which to me is a key. SKS is good for range shooting and sniping, but the AK wins in everything else.
  4. I just got a pre-ban perfect except for one tiny ding in the stock Norinco today from a friend who owed me some money. :)

    Beautiful gun, absolutely not molested in any way and doesn't have so much as a scratch on it. All numbers match even the firing pin (took it apart to clean the cosmo out of it). Funny thing is that I'm looking for a bastard SKS that I won't mind butchering but I keep coming across perfect guns.

    So that means I have 2 SKSs and 5 AKs for now.

    I like them for different reasons. I don't look at them as competitors so much but rather that they complement each other.
  5. uncle jerky

    uncle jerky Well-Known Member

    I onwed a Yugo SKS 59/66.It was very sturdy and accurate,It was completely unmodified but did not come with the military grenade launcher,though the gun would accomadate one funtionally.They also have nice steel and wood on them and a very nice thrusting,folding bayonet. I paid $189 at a gun show,took it home and cleaned all the cosmo out of and off of it and it really turned out nice.Because the gun is heavy,the recoil is tamed. Good luck on your choice and selection.
  6. mattk

    mattk Guest

    i have owned both rifles {yugo sks 59/66, wasr-10 romanian ak} and found the accuracy MUCH better with the sks. i am of the same mind that 30-40 round capacity means very little if you cannot hit your target. the ak is good in that it is compact, and i like the feel of it. but the weight is about the same between the two. for a few extra inches of length, the probability of an accurate shot goes way up. also, you know how pc america feels about the ak-47. most of the gun haters couldnt tell you what an sks was. i have since sold my ak, but still love my sks.
  7. urotu

    urotu Member

    Neo, of the two you have listed there, I might go with the SKS, from a price standpoint, the SKS is probably a better gun. It's going to have better fit and finish, and possibly shoot.

    But, one must ask, have you considered the Saiga in 7.62x39? with it's sporterized config it is more rifle like (ala Norinco Hunter), and infinitely more modifiable than the SKS. Hi-cap magazines are easily adapted to work, you get a better quality "AK" than the WASR, and you can get it with a nice long barrel for accuracy.

    Here are two pics of mine with a factory folding stock..



    Note the hi-caps, my gun took no mods to accept these. I keep hearing I am the exception to the rule about that, but they work just fine.

    You're going to spend more on a Saiga than on the SKS< but less than you would on your WASR, and you'll get better fit and finish. My rifle is good to about 150-200 yds with minimal practice, and open sites (that scope comes off next time out).

    Just a little extra food for thought. My next rifle purchase is going to be an SKS to go along with it.
  8. It seems to me you've answered your own question:

    If you'd be more comfortable with the SKS, get it. I've owned Yugo 59/66 rifles and they were solid, quality built, dependable arms.
  9. I think that the SKS is probably the way you should go.

    However, if the assault weapons ban comes back into effect, you might still be able to get an SKS while the chances of getting and AK would be much lower. Just something to think about....
  10. neothespian

    neothespian Member

    I've thought about that, but then again, it's all dependent on application.

    IF, god forbid, I ever need use of such a weapon I want to get the best quality for my money. That and the extra $150 to $200 can buy me a nice aftermarket stock, a 20 round fixed (or I could get a detachable like the AK , but I hear they're not so hot for feeds...) and spend the remaining $75 to $100 on ammo. That should get me at least 500 rounds depending on where I buy.

    I had determined the SKS might be my best option, but just wanted to make sure that I wasn't going too far against the grain by considering a weapon that many in the "Tacti-Cool" gunsnob community consider a "lesser" rifle.

    Oh, and as for the Saiga: There are hardy any dealers for that weapon in Arizona, and the ones I do see edge to $300 and up. I hear great things about them, but again... it's a matter of availability. If I find one for market price I'll give it a VERY long look and good consideration.
  11. urotu

    urotu Member

    Market value is a relative term...

    Although I paid considerably less for mine, it was used. I would not hesitate to spend $300 on a x39 Saiga, worth every penny in my opinion, especially the 20" barrel.
  12. Ari

    Ari Guest

    If you are wanting an SKS type weapon buy the stock Sagia. Though I am a real big fan of the SKS a stock Saiga is very good quality weapon that is new not surplus. You can get it in just about any round you want. If down the road you want to mod it you can. I have no problem at all with having a few 10 round mags for it and just leave thing stock. I would not take it into Iraq like that but for what most of us are likely to face it would be just fine. The prices are not bad either..........

    Check out classic arms
  13. I'm working on a few AK kits and do not own an SKS (yet); nevertheless, I just voted for the SKS. From what you've said, it does sound like this is a better fit for your needs
  14. duker_sponk

    duker_sponk Guest

    I have shot both side by side and while the AK is accurate to a point, the SKS is just all around more accurate for what you get.
  15. Glennfrank

    Glennfrank Member

    +1 to Ari as I was in a very similar dilemma a few weeks ago.
    So far, I am very happy with my Saiga. They come in 16 and 20 inch barrels (20" seems more rare) in .223, 7.62, 308.
    Aftermarket surefire hi-cap magazines aren't hugely expensive & don't require any modification (there is the 922r compliance issue when using them though).
    I think in its original configuration it is best of both the SKS & AK in one package.
  16. In years past Norinco's could be picked up for 85.00 hence the reason I got one ever time i went to a gun show. I've two I shoot and four I've never pulled form the box. I guess I'm partial to the sks's. I say go SKS
  17. Care to share the wealth? :). I want one bad but I can't afford almost $200 once you factor in fees and shipping lol.
  18. neothespian

    neothespian Member

    Well, when you factor in shipping, the ungodly FFL fees the two shops up here charge ($35 and $40 depending on which one you choose) and what not, the Saiga ends up costing MORE than the Bulgarian AK from J and G and that even includes fuel driving down to the shop!

    Besides, It won't be until this next weekend before we can drive down there and get a new weapon. Have to wait on turning around one of the scooters we got Mary-Ann. Bought her a Yamaha Razz 50 and a '81 Honda Express 50 scooter both for $400, and we think we can sell one of them after fixing them up for at least $600.

    That means a new wardrobe for her and a new gun for me!

    I think I have my gun selected....
  19. They both have their good and bad points, but in this politically correct society that we live in, a unmodified SKS will draw less attention than an AK will, and that can be a good thing.

    I own both, and as far as shooting I would have to flip a coin, but the SKS does have the under the radar look about it.

    On the other hand, if you are going to buy an SKS and make it look like a AK, why not just buy an AK?