I may be in the market for an AK47 next time I go. What are some things to look for and look out for. I don't have any experience with AK's and I know gun shows can be trecherous if you don't know what you are talking about. I apreciat the patiance if this is beating a dead horse.hug.gif
Sometimes there's some grade-a pussy handing out raffle tickets and shit like that at the door.
Take a look and see what you think; I say it's worth keeping an eye on for a bit at least.
I was in the same boat for a long time, until after a few buys I learned the hard way. If you're looking for an AK, here's probably the nationality of the kits used in the builds (if it's an AK in america it was built on an american receiver and an imported parts kit).
Most likely the common AK you'll see being sold is a Romanian WASR or SAR 1.
Both are great, people like the SAR1 better because of the dimples the help hold the mag secure on the receiver. I wouldn't really worry about that. You'll know if it's a SAR1 or a WASR because it says on the left side of the receiver, WASR or SAR1,2,3.
Now neither I would think would go much more than $400. But I wouldn't be surprised to see a post ban WASR even go for $400 or more, and if is, either get him/her down to at least $330/$350 or pass it by. The SAR1,2,3 are sometimes a little more but not much. The newly imported and built WASR .223 and 5.45x39 are probably going to be popular for a while, as they're showing up on a lot of surplus dealer sites. On those sites they go for around $350 with shipping. If you see one and it's more than that stay away or bargain.
Also one thing to look for on a WASR or any AK really (but the WASRs seem to suffer from it the most, although some on here have said it's not as common anymore) is something called barrel cant. It's obvious by just getting behind it and look down the site. Does the front site block look bent either to the right or left? and does the rear site seem to bend in that direction to correct the offsetness of the FSB? then it has barrel cant. Not sure if it affects accuracy, my first and only WASR had BOTH barrel cant and bad trigger slap, and I got rid of it. I didn't notice any accuracy problems though from having the cant. But you'll be able to spot it easily and I would say pass it up, since you're likely to find the same model with a different vendor. As for trigger slap, you won't know that until you shoot it, and according to some sites it's easy to fix with a dremel.
Now, that was the Romanians.
The next would be bulgarian builds, and Arsenal. Everyone on here seems to love arsenal, and they have a good reputation, so if you find an AK that has ARSENAL on the left side of the receiver, you're probably going to get a great AK. But they cost much more than a Romanian. So that's up to you to decide, on the EE here they go for around $600 usually give or take $100.
Then there's the wonderful Vepr rifles built in Russia, everyone seems to love those that have one, and they're supposed to have excellent accuracy. But again they cost a decent amount, around $600.
I guess that's about all I can think of right now, I would say the ones you need to look at the most are the Romanians, but again they're good for the price and will almost always (unless they were assembled poorly) go boom.
hope this helps.