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Posted: 11/20/2014 9:05:51 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/20/2014 9:06:45 PM EDT by dogfacepappy]
Ok, so, I'm an AR guy. Over the past decade, I've always thought the AKM was a pretty nice looking rifle. Seen them at the range often. As an RO, every dude with one was "Hey man, shoot my AK", I never passed up the chance, I can't argue, they shoot, that's for damn sure. Nothing feels like one. Can't compare apples to an orange.

I remember AK parts kits being cheaper than I ever thought they would be, so, I ordered a Spuds NDS-1 EZ. Cool right?

Then I went shopping for AKM parts kits. Not only were the same parts houses gone, but the places selling parts were asking the prices you could buy a whole rifle for, 10 years go, along with a case of 7.62x39. Holy smokes!

What happened with the price of AK parts? I'm not an AK dude, so I am NOT in the know, am I looking in the wrong place? Was I just not paying attention? Was I just hung over for a decade?

Looks like a kit is going to be a pricey proposition, this is not the affordable rifle of old.

It's quite competitive with the AR platform in price now.
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 9:26:50 PM EDT
B Hussein O happened.
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 9:37:05 PM EDT
It's been several years ago since the ATF stopped allowing AK parts kits to come in country with barrels. To me that signaled the beginning coupled with former Combloc countries going NATO. Other regulations that were added on top.
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 9:37:55 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By imjb1911:
B Hussein O happened.
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FPNI.

Best gun salesman of all time.
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 9:45:05 PM EDT
The ATF barrel ban (no complete barrels in kits) killed the kit game.

But, more than anything, surplus is just flat drying up. There are still (relatively) good deals on new production guns (Yugo, Romanian), but as soon as the majority of offerings were not able to leverage the surplus cost advantage, the prices started to creep.

Link Posted: 11/20/2014 9:49:04 PM EDT
ATF banned the original barrels that came in the kits. US companies started buying up kits to build and sell commercially. More people discovered that AK was not all that hard to build so more folks got into it and the quality of tooling improved and was commercially available, these factors increased demand. Couple that with the dwindling supply of kits and FBHO's antics and you have today's prices.
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 10:31:16 PM EDT
Ahh, ok. I get it.

Bummer that I waited to build one. *sigh* I guess I'll just pick up a part here and there until I notice I''ve got it all. Out of parts most threatened by BHO and the Alphabet Boys, which ones should I snatch first since I have the receiver covered?
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 10:35:13 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By dogfacepappy:
Ahh, ok. I get it.

Bummer that I waited to build one. *sigh* I guess I'll just pick up a part here and there until I notice I''ve got it all. Out of parts most threatened by BHO and the Alphabet Boys, which ones should I snatch first since I have the receiver covered?
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OEM barrel (if you want one)
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 11:23:43 PM EDT
Link Posted: 11/20/2014 11:39:30 PM EDT
Barrel - the barrel is the key.

In 7.62 there are some domestic options which can be quite nice. Since you have a US receiver it's not really a bad thing to pick one up. Buddy has a green mountain CL barrel he used with a romanian kit and it can flat out shoot.

Other options are to scour theakforum.net (must be member to access their EE) for an original. They do pop up monthly but have a price that reflects availability.

In 5.45 if that's your thing - avoid us barrels and honestly search for a 5.45 saiga to build off of.
Link Posted: 11/21/2014 12:52:01 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2014 1:00:17 AM EDT by dogfacepappy]
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Originally Posted By Finslayer83:
Barrel - the barrel is the key.

In 7.62 there are some domestic options which can be quite nice. Since you have a US receiver it's not really a bad thing to pick one up. Buddy has a green mountain CL barrel he used with a romanian kit and it can flat out shoot.

Other options are to scour theakforum.net (must be member to access their EE) for an original. They do pop up monthly but have a price that reflects availability.

In 5.45 if that's your thing - avoid us barrels and honestly search for a 5.45 saiga to build off of.
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Ok, off on a barrel search. Thanks man!
Link Posted: 11/21/2014 6:41:11 AM EDT
Unless you have the tooling and jigs in place, I would not build an AK anymore. It's just not as economical as it used to be.

Keep or sell your receiver, buy a factory rifle, and call it a day.
Link Posted: 11/21/2014 7:34:02 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2014 7:35:20 AM EDT by 56type]
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Originally Posted By sdrake100:
Unless you have the tooling and jigs in place, I would not build an AK anymore. It's just not as economical as it used to be.

Keep or sell your receiver, buy a factory rifle, and call it a day.
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Your right....But if he plans on maybe building a few then the investment in quality tooling will pay off since he can repair any AK with the right tools.

Rivet jig = $150 - 250 (depending on vendor
Trigger guard riveting jig = $35 - 60 (again, depending on vendor)
Tooling to press barrel components off/on = $45
12-ton HF shop press = $120

OP do some serching on the various boards and get an idea on what you want to spend on your tooling and which type you want. You can get tooling that will work without a shop press (bolt cutter riveting tool, rear rivet jig, TG rivet jig). That you could buy a piece at a time to spread the cost out some. Is it as cheap as it used to be ?? Nope, but then what is ??...
Link Posted: 11/21/2014 8:32:27 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2014 8:59:25 AM EDT by sdrake100]
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Originally Posted By 56type:

*snip*
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Originally Posted By 56type:
Originally Posted By sdrake100:
Unless you have the tooling and jigs in place, I would not build an AK anymore. It's just not as economical as it used to be.

Keep or sell your receiver, buy a factory rifle, and call it a day.

*snip*

You're right. My statement was based on the assumption that OP "just wants an AK". If that's the case, then buying up jigs to make just one AK seems like a waste of money.

If it's just to have one, I'd buy it. There are kits out there, though I'd argue that the ones worth having + receiver and 922R parts are almost as much as a current factory rifle. This is all very subjective and based on personal experience. YMMV.
Link Posted: 11/21/2014 8:17:09 PM EDT
Actually, I also had some alter riot motives, those guys on Cal-guns have these occasional build parties, a bunch of 'em get together with tools and such and build, bullshit and eat BBQ and such. Inwas wanting to jump in on the social aspect of it. I oft get bored talking to myself.
Link Posted: 11/24/2014 6:34:36 PM EDT
Keep an eye over on akfiles.com - there always kits of varying prices available there, some as low as $125 recently (obviously those are gone). Apex usually has Yugo kits starting at $250. The receiver you got isn't for Yugo rifles, but I imagine that they have non-Yugo kits for similar money.
Link Posted: 11/28/2014 10:49:54 AM EDT
Back when Sportsman's Guide had Bulgy demilled AKS-74U kits minus trigger guards for around $500, I bit and bought one. Glad I did looking at krink kits now WITHOUT original barrels and what they ask for them. At the time got an NDS receiver with serial # matched to the kit's. The krink was my first build and went together nice. I bought the trigger guard jig and bolt cutter rivet tool. Had the press at work to use whenever I wanted. As a auto technician, drag racer and car builder, putting the AK together was no problem, NOT rocket science. Hardest part was pressing the barrel back into the trunion. Chilled the barrel and heated the trunion, pressed in nice and headspace checked out perfect. Built another Bulgy AK-74 folder from a demilled kit. Sold off the building tools when kit prices started going up. Still have both 74.s and spent several years collecting tins of Russian suplus ammo!
Link Posted: 11/28/2014 6:53:11 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/28/2014 6:54:08 PM EDT by dogfacepappy]
SG refused outright to send AKM kits to California as there is a 30 round mag in the kit and they refuse to swap the 30 for a 10. I had a lovely conversation with their CS folks last week where I was pretty much told to go F myself. So, I stuck my credit card back in my wallet and said "Okey dokey".
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