Hello, I want to build an AK, pref a decent quality one. I see K-Var as a kit supplier online, and I'd like to go that way. I also want to go with their bull-pup conversion. I'm not really worried about accuracy, but at some point optics would be a desirable option.
What should I look for in a reciever? Figure on picking one up at a local gun show, which is a big event here in DFW. Stamped or milled? Will that choice affect my choice on optics?
What else would I need besides the parts kits on K-Var's site? I know I'd have to have the rifle headspaced...
I believe the AK.74 kits are complete. They are in 5.45 x 39.5 and made for a stamped receiver. Build information is on the "build it yourself" forum. Compared to an AR-15, they are quite difficult to build. Be sure you have the skills and the tools to build one before you spend your $. You will not have to headspace the demilled model. Stamped receivers are less expensive and easier to build. I can't speak about bullpup optical mounts, I have no experiance with them.
Building isn't a problem - that's kinda my thing. I've done weapons system modifications during my time in the military - and I don't mean small arms, I mean air-launched. Thanks for the heads up on building, though. I'm going to let an actual smith do the headspace.
As to 'demilled', I haven't seen anything that listed as being demilled on their parts kit sites, so I'd assume they hadn't been stripped out. Also, in my experience with demilling part (we used to send 20mm M61A2's for this) you can NOT un-de-mill them. Once we de-mill it you can forget chambering a round in there and firing it.
So, what's the deal with AKs?
To the ATF, de-milling a rifle is cutting the
reciever in half. If done correctly (as these have been) it leaves every part of the rifle; barrel, bolt, fire control group, etc all intact and ready to go. It just needs a new receiver, which is the licensed part according to the ATF.
The military's version of demilling is entirely different than the ATF's version of demilling
Guess which is more effective?
LOL. Not a problem. Their site shows the parts disassembled, which is good. I'll probably be more or less maintaining this thing like a swiss watch (which is more than it needs), and build should be pretty straightforward. I think I know pretty well when to use a hammer and when not.
I have been told that when compared to building an AK, an AR really just falls together. Mine sure did. Good thing it doesn't fall back apart...
Javven, first off I'm going to assume that you want an AK-74 and not an AK-47. If not, I'd like to recommend the AK-74 over the AK-47. In 1974 the switch was made from 7.62X39mm to 5.45X39mm to compete with the American 5.56X45 (.223).
You need six (6) American parts on a post-ban AK variant to be 922r legal. Most people replace the cheapest 6 parts.
Here's an exact blueprint for a rifle that I just had built by In Range:
Bulgarian AK-74 parts kit with black polymer furniture from K-Var. Also pick up a US-made pistol grip (#AK-002BUS), which is identical to the Bulgarian one that comes with the kit. I'd recommend picking up this kit rather quickly, as they are known for selling out:
AKS 5.45 AK-74 receiver from Ohio Ordnance Works:
Red Star Arms adjustable trigger from Power Custom:
US-made gas piston from Tapco:
Optic rail from Tantal.
Your six American parts would be:
Ohio Ordnance Works receiver (1 part)
Red Star Arms Trigger (3 parts)
US-made pistol grip (1 part)
US-made gas piston (1 part)
I had Troy Sellers at IN RANGE assemble mine for a $225 fee, but I'm sure the other companies mentioned above would do a good job as well. All in all, I had a little over $600 in mine not including optics.
Ditto M4 except for the effort of the gas piston, I'd spend a few dollars more up front for the easy swap of a US butt stock from KVAR.
For the bullpups, I have never heard nice things about their trigger feel due to the linkage. But handling just one does not make me an expert.
I love my Bulgy 74 build.
Actually I do not want a 5.56 or anything close. I want something I can shoot recreationally and actually hunt with legally. I haven't seen a deer yet I couldn't kill with my AR-15, but it just isn't legal to shoot them with .223. You've got to be shooting 6mm (at least where I am) or better.
I figured the old war-wagon AK would fill the bill, since I can shoot wolf ammo all day and not spend much. But it looks more and more like I might just get a Mauser (really no question about quality there) and go from there. I really wouldn't mind the 8mm round, but there's scant advantage to it over the AK-47 for just deer in close cover. 7.62x39 will kill, and there's no such thing as deader. Perhaps more reliability from the 8mm...