Where’s My AK-47? It’s Hunting Time!

AK-47 with camo finish lying on a against a tree, barrel pointed down and to the right.

Whether you love or hate the AK-47, you must admit the rifle is among the most successful designs of all time. Mikhail Kalashnikov designed the rifle for reliable operation in the harshest conditions. The rifle has not failed to meet his expectations. The AK-47, adopted by the Soviet Union in 1947, has been around long enough for many to have an opinion about it.

AK-47 with camo finish lying on a against a tree, barrel pointed down and to the right.
While not usually thought of as such, the AK-47 is a friendly rifle to use and fire. Think about it—light recoil and nothing breaks!

The Great Points

The AK has many excellent points:

  • It is simple and economical to produce
  • Easily maintained
  • Reliable, above all else

The military rifle is a select-fire version capable of fully-automatic fire. Commercial rifles fire in the semi-auto mode. While the rifle is original in some ways, it uses a gas piston system similar to the American M1 Garand.

As the cartridge propellant ignites, some of the propellant gas produced bleeds off from the barrel and propels a gas piston that actuates the bolt carrier. The bolt carrier ends in an angled cam track that fits into a lug on the bolt. The bolt is forced rearward and cammed counterclockwise. This takes the locking lugs out of contact with the receiver.

During this operation, the bolt flies to the rear, the spent case ejects and the bolt moves forward, stripping a round from the magazine and feeding this cartridge into the chamber.

Camo AK-47 with original medium brown parts below it, barrel pointed to the right on a white background.
If you do not like Camo… Well, put it back to original.

There is a lot going on when the AK-47 fires, and the bolt is heavy. Some feel the design leads to poor accuracy, but accuracy is relative.

The AK-47 is not a long-range rifle by any means, and it demonstrates adequate combat accuracy to well over 100 yards. There are many types of AK-47 rifles and the type has been built the world over.

Common features include

  • Leaf-style rear sights
  • Protected front sight
  • Curved 30-round box magazine
  • Long safety lever on the right side of the receiver
  • Characteristic angled muzzle brake and flash hider
  • Length of pull with the wooden stock is 14 inches—ideal for the average shooter

I see the value in the AK-47 rifle—primarily for recreation. I have had a strong bent for many years to simply to take a firearm to the range and to discover how it performs.

  • Will it function when dirty?
  • When overheated?
  • How does it handle?
  • Is it fast into action?
  • How accurate is it with different loads?

I have enjoyed firing the AK-47 and also testing it against different rifles. When all is said and done, here is a rifle that doesn’t jam and handles well.

The Right Loads

Orange box of Hornady’s A Max ammunition with cartridges displayed on the left against a white background.
Hornady’s A Max is a modern load that maximizes the caliber.

The safety—sometimes criticized—is very similar to the safety lever found on the Remington Model 8—and the Model 8 is a classic and much-loved rifle. The AK-47 is so popular that it has seen use in the hunting field. And in the field, against deer-sized game at moderate range or hogs at close range, the cartridge is proven. It handles quickly, which is important in the brush. The cartridge is sometimes compared to the .30-30 Winchester. However, the 7.62 x 39mm is actually a more efficient cartridge.

The 7.62 x 39mm hunting loads such as the Winchester 123-grain JSP send a 123-grain bullet from the AK’s muzzle at 2300 fps or so. The 150-grain .30-30 Winchester averages about 2200 fps. However, if you handload, it is possible to equal, or exceed, the .30-30 WCF by jolting a 150-grain bullet to 2,300 fps. The Cor Bon 150-grain hunting load in 7.62 x 39mm is faster and has more energy than the average .30-30 WCF load, but achieves this from a shorter barrel. The cartridges are closer than most realize. As a 50-yard brush gun, the AK has much merit.


AK-47 with camo finish, barrel pointed to the right, lying on a log.
The non-reflective, matte finish and camo are great for the woods.

As for accuracy, the average .30-30 lever-action rifle groups three shots into two inches at 100 yards, with the occasional Marlin rifle demonstrating 1.5 MOA. The AK-47 misses absolute accuracy. It is probably best considered a 4.5 MOA rifle.

The Winchester JSP is a good hunting load and often groups three shots into 3.5 inches at 100 yards forming a good tight AK.

It takes attention to detail, a proper rest and avoiding pressure on the forearm to accomplish even 4 MOA with the AK-47. However, that’s OK because it it is best to use it a little closer.

Why Purchase the AK-47

Most of you will probably purchase an AK-47 rifle for critical use or for recreation. That’s fine. Enjoying owning the rifle simply because we can is good enough reason. However, if you are going on a hog hunt, the weather is bad and you do not wish to rust the Winchester… the AK may have merit. And that tough old hog may demand an extra round or two. The AK can deliver.

The more I use the AK-47 rifle, the more I appreciate it. The AK-47’s looks may put you off, but don’t let it keep you from enjoying the rifle. After all, when I was a youngster more than one of the ex-GI’s in the family hunted with the humble .30 M1 carbine.

Maybe it wasn’t accurate enough and, on paper, it didn’t look like it had enough energy and it did bring home the meat. In the woods hunting, it did fine to about 50 yards as long as it was loaded with the Winchester 110-grain JHP.

Camo AK-47 pointed to the left on a white background.
This is the author’s camo AK—pretty cool!

I am just pointing out that the AK is far from the first military rifle with a 30-round magazine to take deer!

The AK rifle is not as inexpensive as it once was and remains a bargain when the performance is considered. Ammunition is still affordable. Steel cased FMJ loads are excellent recreational loads while the modern JSP loads give the rifle a new lease on life as a sporting gun.

And why not? Only the best rifles are capable of such as crossover. The .351 Winchester was used by lawmen, our allies, prison guards and in the field. The hoary old Remington Model 8 did not see military use as far as I know and it was designed to accept a stripper clipp and was a very popular lawman’s gun and sporting rifle. I can attest to the fact that the Remington was little—if any—more accurate than the AK-47 and, in .30, Remington no more powerful.

If the AK-47 is your rifle and you have the chance to go hunting, choose a good load, practice first and keep the range short.

The rifle will surprise you.

Specifications and Features

  • Caliber: 7.62×39 mm
  • Action Type: gas-operated, semi-automatic center-fire rifle
  • Receiver: 4140 steel
  • Barrel Length: 16 1⁄2″
  • Rifling: four-groove, 1:10″ RH twist
  • Magazine: 30-round box magazine
  • Sights: front post adjustable for elevation, rear adjustable for windage and elevation
  • Trigger: two-stage, 6-lb., 12-oz. pull
  • Stock: polymer: length of pull, 14″; drop at heel, 2″; drop at comb, 11 1⁄16″
  • Overall Length: 37 1⁄4″
  • Weight: 8 lbs.

How do you use the AK-47? What’s your favorite thing about it? Share in the comment section.


About the Author:

Bob Campbell

Bob Campbell’s primary qualification is a lifelong love of firearms, writing, and scholarship. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice but is an autodidact in matters important to his readers. Campbell considers unarmed skills the first line of defense and the handgun the last resort. (He gets it honest- his uncle Jerry Campbell is in the Boxer’s Hall of Fame.)

Campbell has authored well over 6,000 articles columns and reviews and fourteen books for major publishers including Gun Digest, Skyhorse and Paladin Press. Campbell served as a peace officer and security professional and has made hundreds of arrests and been injured on the job more than once.

He has written curriculum on the university level, served as a lead missionary, and is desperately in love with Joyce. He is training his grandchildren not to be snowflakes. At an age when many are thinking of retirement, Bob is working a 60-hour week and awaits being taken up in a whirlwind many years in the future.

Published in
Black Belt Magazine
Combat Handguns
Rifle Magazine
Gun Digest
Gun World
Tactical World
SWAT Magazine
American Gunsmith
Gun Tests Magazine
Women and Guns
The Journal Voice of American Law Enforcement
Police Magazine
Law Enforcement Technology
The Firearms Instructor
Tactical World
Concealed Carry Magazine
Concealed Carry Handguns

Books published

Holsters for Combat and Concealed Carry
The 1911 Automatic Pistol
The Handgun in Personal Defense
The Illustrated Guide to Handgun Skills
The Hunter and the Hunted
The Gun Digest Book of Personal Defense
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911
The Gun Digest Book of the 1911 second edition
Dealing with the Great Ammunition Shortage
Commando Gunsmithing
The Ultimate Book of Gunfighting
Preppers Guide to Rifles
Preppers Guide to Shotguns
The Accurate Handgun
The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (44)

  1. Pingback: Ode to the AK
  2. Hi Jim,

    I’ll look for the CAI VZ 2008 at the J&G table. It sounds like you’re excited about it, and I’ll ask them some questions as well. Basically I’m going to be patient and enjoy the search for another AK47, and try to learn as much as I can.
    On my first trip to the shooting range with the Zastava M92, I tried Herters (made in Russia) 122gr HP and FMJ, and I bought a couple boxes of 154gr SP to see if it fed OK. I was too busy learning how to control the M92 and shoot fast to do any comparisons with the 154gr for accuracy and trajectory. What I’d REALLY like to do is go to the desert soon and set up some kind of penetration test with the 3 bullet styles, then compare those to my 44 magnum, just for curiosity and since the M92 is technically a “pistol”, LOL.
    Thanks for all the info. I’ll let you know here if I find the CAI VZ 2008.

  3. Richard, If you are going to the gun show in Phoenix, stop by J & G’s table and take a look at the CAI VZ 2008 rifles they may still have on sale(under $500). Outwardly the VZ looks like an AK variant and shoots 7.62×39 and may even have the same iron sights, but that’s all they have in common. The Czech designed VZ is striker fired rather than hammer fired and DOES NOT USE AK MAGAZINES. The receiver is machined steel not stamped but it weighs about a pound less than a similar configured AK. Surplus magazines are made of aluminum which also lightens the loaded weight. The safety selector is much like an AR’s but on the right side—much easier to use than the AK’s tough to move leaver. I have side folder stock on mine with a rubber slip on butt plate. I also tossed the slant cut muzzle break and found a RIGHT HANDED THREAD RPG type muzzle break/flash suppressor for it. It makes for a fine little truck cab carbine for food or varmints (two & four legged). If you guys are going to hunt anything inside of 200 yards with 7.62×39—try some Tulammo 154 grain soft points. I buy the in San Antonio for $5.99 box of 20. I get pretty dang close to the same point of aim with 122, 123, 125, or 154 grain Russian ammo.

  4. “Detail-oriented”, huh? Well, my wife and I are only kids, and she has a much more harsh discription of my interests. I used to re-load for my bolt guns and revolvers, so seeing the steel ammo was new and different for me as well, but I was never an auto-loader fan, so chasing any fired brass would be a hassle anyway, and the steel isn’t re-loadable. The thing about that steel stuff and cheap 7.62 x 39 is that the AK family in general, will digest it just fine, where guys with Ruger Mini 30s and such, have feeding problems, from what I’ve read. The AKs are just built to a looser tolerance, which may inhibit accurracy, but gives back tons in reliability with off brand ammo, and a little mud and dirt thrown in, at least from what I’ve read. (Someone correct me here, if I’m wrong) I won’t be using mine for any long shots, and I don’t have the pleasure of getting to hunt anymore, but if pressed to hunt, mine would work fine for deer sized table fare, on down. My eyes certainly aren’t what they were when I could tolerate sitting still in a tree on a sub-freezing morning, as daylight approached, but mine will be primarily deployed for 5 acre defense, or SHTF. The TABUK sure looks like fun for 50 acre defense though.

  5. Bill, the DPMS LR-308 AR-10 is 7.62×51. LR stands for Long Range. It has a 24″ stainless bull barrel. This morning on their website I discovered they have a new model, the LR-308B, which has an 18″ bull chrome-moly barrel. They say “it’s 2 pounds lighter and a nice blend of hunting and benchrest”….sweet!!
    But I know this is an AK47 forum so I’ll get back on topic. Basically I’m a detail-oriented person who gets addicted to hobbies. When I was addicted to golf I had to try every golf club on Ebay :)….but I can’t do that with guns. I have a budget too. I got tired of seeing all the cheap steel cased ammo for AK47’s when I was buying brass for my AR’s, so now I’m fascinated by the whole AK47 concept, and I’m really looking forward to studying everything that’s out there, and I may swap my AR-15 for another AK47, since I have to watch my budget.
    BTW I really appreciate DB Cooper’s analysis this morning. Thanks DB!

  6. Guys remember that the militaries of the world buy things to fit their combat doctrines. The authors advice for AKs is sound. Short range. The soviet combat doctrine was to hit an objective with as much artillery and canon fire as possible then roll over it with tanks and APC. Once the objective was rolled over troops would dismount and spray the immediate area with automatic fire to kill any survivors. If combat doctrine was followed, most engagement would be in at well less than 100 meters with the objective being under 50 meters. Why do you think so much of the AK ammo out there is 115gr. Additionally doctrine said all fire will be fully automatic and the barrels on the rifles will be shot out by the 200th round which didn’t matter. And before you guys get all bothered by that just remember that most imported AKs have had new US made barrels put on them and you aren’t shooting full auto so your barrel won’t have that wear problem,

  7. I bet that Tabuk would be as well. Maybe not as accurate as the AR-10, I could only guess. But, it was supposed to be a sniper rifle, so…….

  8. Richard, I know little about the AK-47. I know nothing about the AR family. I bought my Century Arms about a week after Sandy Hook, and wasn’t even shopping for a gun at the time, but you know the story of how that went. It was cheaper then than an AR, even though I gave $650 for mine. I had to charge it, and before we could pay off the card, all the AR-15s escalated beyond what I considered reasonable means.
    That AR-10 is 7.62, isn’t it? The configuration you describe sounds like it’d be a lot of fun with sandbags on steel, way out yonder, to me.

  9. Hi Bill, thank you very much for the Tabuk recommendation! I had never heard of it before, but I found a photo and I see what you mean about it being longer. I’m actually very interested in it, but have only begun my AK-47 research. I’m going to the gun show in Phoenix this weekend and hopefully will be checking many AK’s out.
    Since you like the Tabuk, I want to give you something else to look into. DPMS makes an AR-10 with a 24″ bull barrel. I was very tempted to buy one last year, but I settled for the 16″ barrel model when everything was scarce.
    Thanks again for your note.

  10. Congrats on the gun Richard. I still have yet to have an AR-15, but maybe I will some day. I do like my ZASTAVA, but just wish it had the rail for side mount optics, and a bayonet lug. When you say you’d like a longer bbl, have you seen the Israli Tabuk rifle? For some reason that one really appeals to me. A longer, sniper type version of the AK, from what I can tell. Same ammo and mags, it could be a good companion gun.

  11. I just received my Zastava PAP M92 10″ barrel pistol last week, from CTD. I took it to the range and I love it. Reading Jim Ford’s post about AR’s versus AK’s, and the price of ammo, really hit home with thoughts that are going through my mind, since I have an AR-10 and AR-15. Then I saw Jim Ford’s post saying he has a Zastava, and that was pretty cool. I’m still thinking things over but may switch my AR-15 for a longer barreled AK.

  12. Thanks guys, I’ll take all that in advisement. I have lots of time in, hunting, and tinkering with conventional guns, but admit I know nothing really, about military stuff, and was clear about that the day I hurriedly walked the aisles of the gun show, looking for an AK. I had other consumers whispering over my shoulder, brief bits of information, trying to help me in deciding. I’m still learning, and I appreciate your input. Thanks. I’m in no rush, and hopefully it’ll come together for me.

  13. Bill in TX. I’ve installed side plate to a Romanian receiver. Purchased the plate at I had to drill the receiver to mount the plate. After adding the UTG scope mount and a Barska scope, I went to the range with it. Never could get the scope to zero. It seem that I ran out of right windage. If you should go this route with a scope mount on a plate, I’d suggest that you get the Tuff Force scope mount which is centerline adjustable. I’ve put on the the centerline adjustable scope mount but I haven’t been to the range to try once again, to zero the scope. If you should run out of vertical adjustment, you’d have to get a cannelure sniper scope mount that would allow you to adjust for elevation. That with the centerline adjustable should get you on absolute zero and should maintain that setting no matter how many time you remove and re-attach the scope mount. Rusty

  14. Bill, Since the Texas weather is so bad today, you might want to check out this site: There is a lot of data to be found there from all sorts of AK owners and users of every kind of AK variant that has ever been made. I have never been a big fan of weaver rails riveted to stamped metal receiver covers unless the covers are very tight fitting and used for red dot or short range scopes. If your cover is floppy you won’t be able to hold zero shot to shot. I’ve been out of the gunsmith business (except as a customer) for the past 20 years, but I will bet it would almost as cheap for you to find a good chrome lined barrel with its original bayonet lug and have it head spaced to your rifle as it would be to have a lug silver soldered to your barrel. The high heat from welding will alter the strength of your barrel.

  15. Jim: I did look at the link you included, and won’t discount that direction, as I do have a Busnell handgun scope I’m not using, but I never considered a scout type setup. I’d still like to pursue the side rail, and haven’t checked local gunsmiths, but read online where someone had a gunsmith install one, so maybe that’s still a possibility. I’d liked to have the top and side rail option. Mine has that Weaver type rail on the floppy reciever cover now, so I haven’t yet been inspired by that. I also found online where a guy had a gunsmith weld a bayonet lug back where the one had been ground off the gas block. I just need to make a call or two, I guess. Thanks though, I won’t rule out your idea, if mine fails.

  16. Bill, If you want to mount a scope on your AKM, your best and least expensive solution might be as they make a mount that replaces your existing rear sight assembly with a two piece machined mount with a weaver rail. If your scope fails while you are out in the field the top part(rail portion) can be detached and the bottom part is a fixed iron rear sight. This company is in Cedar Park, Texas, NW of Austin. If you are anywhere near them, you might want to go by with your rifle. They also have a lot of photos and information on their website so you can judge if they have a solution for your rifle. Happy Trails.

  17. Thanks Rusty, no one has come out and said it like that. Apparantly, that’s what I have, it just seems confusing, and when I went in to buy it, I didn’t realize there were all the physical variations. I’m still researching, as I’d really like to be able to have a side rail, a rear sling mount, and a bayonet lug somehow. Thanks for explaining it.

  18. To Bill from Boomhower, TX. There are two different AK’s. There’s the Russian, Chinese, Romanian, etc. However, there is one variant that the parts are not interchangeable and that’s the Yugo. It typically has 3 vent holes through the upper and lower forearms. These parts are not interchangeable with the Russian style with 2 vent holes in the upper and lower forearms. The dust covers are shorter than that of the Russian (Romanian) style. I know as I’ve seen both and have hands on experience with each style of AK. The best AK is the RPK which is a machine gun, but you can get them in semi-automatic. It has a much longer bbl. than the AK. Hope that helps with parts when you go to make your next order. And yes the Yugo stock bolts through the complete butt stock into the rear trunion. You’ve probably got a Yugo model. Rusty.

  19. If Century Arms built your AKM, you might call them at (561) 265-4530 and see what they could do for you in terms of stocks and other parts. The side plate for a side scope mount is bolted into my stamped receiver. I don’t know if they would run your rifle through their shop to modify it for you or even if it would be worth the cost to you. You could always sell yours and buy another closer to what you want. Prices are dropping now so watch for sales online.

  20. To Jim Ford: I guess yours actually isn’t just like mine. The owner’s manual in the box mine came in looks just like what you’re discribing, and I glanced at it, but never gave it much thought as to why it didn’t look like mine. Not much technical info of any value in it anyway, just a lot of remedial and redundant safety disclaimers. Mine has wood stock and forearm, Maple I think I read somewhere. Ugly as Hell, until it had been handled somewhat, from hand oils and age. After more than a year now, it’s darkened enough not to be too ugly. The top handguard piece on mine is maybe 1 1/2″ or so longer than the plastic MAKO stuff I bought, so that wouldn’t work. The butt stock on mine has a squared and tapered front end, that draws into a same shaped metal reciever. Is this what they are calling the “trunion”? Mine fits just like a single shot shotgun stock, with a hole from back to front, under the recoil pad, with a single bolt holding the stock on. Mine never had the plate for mounting the optic mount. Instead, it has a rail riveted to the reciever dust cover, which you can move with thumb and finger. It has a Tapco M2 trigger, but no bayonet lug on the gas port.

    I bought this a week after Sandy Hook, not knowing anything about AKs, just because I still could, and didn’t know how long I’d have that option. Since I knew nothing about them, and tbhis one was new in the box, I opted for it over the cheaper ones. Really, I just wish I could have the side rail, and bayonet lug, and I could live with the wood furniture. Oh, it only has a front sling provision too. I have an old rear sling mount from an M-1, or Trap Door, or something. I could mount it, but am hesitant to put holes in the stock, but it may come to that. Anyway, I thought maybe you could advise. I’ll keep my ear to the rails. Thanks for replying.

  21. Whatever you have, typically the more you shoot the better you hit. I can get 7.62×39 delivered to my door costing from $0.24 to $0.30 per round including the hunting ammo. 5.56/.223, 7.62×51/.308, and the newer calibers start at $0.39 for surplus 5.56 and go to over $1.50 per round for hunting .308 Win. If you are flush, get you a safe full of rifles in calibers for every occasion or situation you might face. Otherwise, get a rifle with a wide range of capability and availability of affordable ammo and practice frequently.

  22. Just about any AR platform 458SOCOM/450Bushmaster/6.5Creedmore/6.8SPC(AWESOME round from 5th SFG(A))/7.62×39 etc… and the AR-10 Carbine w/EO-Tech will run like a scalded dog at close range, and distance. 5.56, not so much.

  23. If you don’t want to lug a 30 round metal magazine around while hunting, Tapco makes Intrafuse 5 and 10 round poly magazines that work in my rifle just fine. They fit tight, are durable, and quiet.

  24. The Rifle I purchased from J&G Sales out of Phoenix was assembled by CAI with CAI’s barrel, receiver, and trigger group parts to make it U.S. legal. It came with the black, thumbhole stock, rubber butt plate, and side plate on the left side of the receiver. I found a RPK muzzle brake/flash hider (I don’t like the slant cut) and a scope mount at Center Fire Systems but I also searched on because they represent a lot of gun part sellers and rate customer experience with them. Often it is a trade off between lower prices for individual items from multiple sellers and lower shipping costs by buying everything from one seller (some don’t charge sales tax). I bought this rifle to hunt hogs in South Texas brush where 100 yards is a long shot and 35 is typical. Some folks talk CAI rifles down but I’ve enjoyed shooting this one. It has a smooth 3.5 pound trigger and shoots a reasonably good group with 154 grain Tulammo SP.

  25. Hey Jim Ford, it appears you have the same model I do. How about sharing sources for your side plate for the side mount scope rail? I can find the side mount, but not the plate to nount the mount to. Also, the furniture you have. Cheaper Than Dirt told me they didn’t carry it, and I had to return to them, the MAKO furniture I bought for mine, and they said they couldn’t help me there either. I have the Brownell’s catalog, but can’t find anything that looks like it would fit mine. Thanks.

  26. I am not a police officer but I know several tasked with patrolling vast stretches of Texas border alone with the closest backup being at least 30 minutes away. If I were them I’d surely want to be as equally well armed as the bad guys I’d be likely to meet. An AK47 variant is a better man stopper than an AR according to all the combat door kickers I’ve ever talked to.

  27. Comment on the Ignorant whiners who AREN’T willing to put their life on the line, but willing to criticize the choice of round from someone who does.
    1) If you die from a 5.56/7.62×39/7.62×51/.22/9mm/.38/.40cal/.45 you are still dead!
    2) When I shoot someone at close range, I want them to stop then and there. I shot them for a reason.
    3) It does not look good to have “Killed by a dead man” written on your headstone/grave marker. Which is what happens when you shoot someone at close range with the 5.56, unless you practice head shots.

  28. I own 4 AK-47 variants and a Romanian Draco “pistol”. ALL of them are wicked, reliable and deadly weapons platforms capable of taking game of all sizes and configurations in the field and also urban surroundings. They can withstand miserable weather, heavy rainfall, mud, snow, heat and the coldest of conditions and STILL fire a round. On a side note, I can not fathom any police officer in this country feeling the need to carry an AK-47 or variant as a “patrol rifle”? Talk about excessive force.

  29. I own an AK-47. The main reason for inaccuracy of the AK rifle is because they are mass produced and at the end of assembly a muzzle brake is added. No time is taken to cut a crown on the muzzle. Me and a few friends are going to order a 17 degree muzzle reamer and pass it between us and accurize our AK-47’s.

  30. I am a police officer and I carry an Egyptian made Maddi Industries AK Misr in 7.62×39 as a patrol rifle. My department allows the optional carry of rifles and shotguns. They don’t issue them and therefore are privately purchased.
    Officers may carry any rifle or shotgun subject to firearms instructors approval(the same goes for handguns).All of my fellow officers who opt for rifles carry AR platform carbines and we must qualify annually. On the range I come in for good natured ribbing for carrying “…that commie rifle.”!
    I love the AK platform weapons for all of the reasons in the foregoing comments. AS for accuracy, I can’t imagine many police scenarios (including sniper/counter sniper)where the engagement range will be much past 100 meters. The AK is suitable in this envelope.
    I have replaced the original furniture, fire control elements, magazines and muzzle break with those manufactured by TAPCO. I also replaced the top cover with one from CDNN. It has a short Picatinny rail to which is mounted a red/green dot 1x scope from UTG.
    As an aside I mourn the recent passing of Mikael Kalashnikov. He was a great man.

  31. I have a sporterized Zastava PAP 70 in black poly furniture with a side plate mounted 3x9X32 scope for a hunting brush gun. It likes the Tulammo 154 grain soft points really well and will hit the center of an 8″ gong at 50 yards all day long. Hogs are hard to kill, but this combination ought to do the job just fine inside 100 yards.

  32. I have an AK47. It`s a Saiga sporter which I totally converted myself. I moved the trigger group forward, installed a pistol grip, and buttstock. I replaced the gas tube and installed the upper and lower handguards. There`s nothing like doing your own work and styling it the way YOU want! What a beautiful rifle with the Timbersmith furniture. I tried an aluminum quad rail on it for a while but then went to wood. The only thing I haven`t done to it is add a bullet guide for use of standard AK mags. I find it is accurate enough for me, the ammo is CHEAP, it breaks down like a tinker toy and NEVER, and I mean NEVER has any FTF`s or FTE`s! The muzzle rise is negligible with the compensator, and it`s just plain ol` comfortable. Don`t get me wrong, I love my home built AR15 which I made from a no serial numbered 80% receiver. Drilled and milled, ordered a nice upper and have all the gadgets with it. Of course it cost quite a bit more. That`s the last point I want to make about my AK47. Made in the Kalashnikov factory in Iszmash it is a TRUE Russian AK47 and I bought it for $500.00 out the door which included DROS fee, transfer fee and sales tax, all of which SUCK out here in Commiefornia. I put in another $250.00 on the trigger group, handguards, gas tube, pistol grip and buttstock. Are you kidding me???? A true in the very sense of the word RUSIAN AK47 for under $750.00. Can`t beat that with a stick. Oh, and by the way…it shoots GREAT!!!! If you don`t own one, go out and get one. Just don`t get one of those cheap ones. I`m not going to mention names, you can find out who makes the crappy ones just by reading. But believe me, they are a lot of fun!

  33. I don’t know why people say the AK is so inaccurate. I have shot five different ones. Mine could hit rock size head shots at 300 yards with a red dot as fast as you could pull the trigger with cheap wolf ammo. ( Chinese AK-47 MAK-90 )And could hit 400 yards easy with good trigger control. If I couldn’t shoot past 300 yards with any rifle, it’s not a rifle to me. Maybe that’s the Marine Corps in me. But with my friends stock m14/m1a rifle I can shoot a group of three in the same hole at 400 yards this open sights. I have the pics to prove it. The Ak-47 cant do that, but it is accurate in my hands.

  34. I shoot ground hogs and coyotes with a Vepr Super in .223, a relative of the AK based on the RPK light machine gun. It shoots 1 to 1.25 MOA at 100 yds with inexpensive brass cased ammo. Better with hand loads.
    There are a wide range of AK platforms, some are quite accurate.

  35. Yeah whoever said it is not accurate prolly has never actually owned or even shot one. II own a GP WASR 10/63 and out of the box from 25-30yrd open sights it was as bout as on as it could be, he’ll I have even Shot quarters open sighted from 15-20yrds away not through the center but I hit It.

  36. I used to own an Arsenal SA M-7S. It was a post ban AK, so it came with a 5rd mag. I used it deer hunting and was successful. True, it’s not a very accurate rifle, but the woods I used to hunt were pretty thick. There really was no chance of getting a shot beyond 100 yards anyway.

  37. Just a note: AKM MEANS. Automot Klashocva Modernized I , know I did not spell it right, However first & foremost, The AK-47 Was meant to run in full auto, with the Capability of Semi Automatic fire. Now the M-16- Family are rifles , That are made to be shot by a rifle man, in semi automatic fire as they are much more accurate, with the Capability, of “full automatic fire”. The, first Russian Rifle I own is of milled steel, the Receiver is not stamped, making it one of the first ones they were building at that time, at some point they gained knowledge, with alloys and then started stamped receivers, so then came the name A.K.M. AK 47- AK 74 & I’m no expert on this ,however I,did read about it sometime in my life… Thanks for your comments on this. G.W.O.

  38. Yes, a scope or laser would help accuracy a lot in my opinion, because the theory is that accuracy now suffers from such a short sight radius, but mine has the rail rivitted to the reciever top, and that’s a futal attempt. I wish I could have the side rail mount for mine, but no one seems to offer the rail for it, so it is what it is. As much as I’d like to have this option, I don’t hunt anymore, and have plenty of nice scoped bolt guns to use if I did.

  39. I bought a new in the box Century PAP M-70, because I knew nothing about AKs Bob, but in retrospect I should also have bought a couple of the cheaper used ones also, from the tables that day. I like mine, but wanted to be able to change furniture, add accessories, and have one with a bayonet. Like you said, perhaps the best reason is because you can, and at the time, I felt that might not be a given very much longer. I initially wanted one for SHTF and defense,for which mine will suffice in spades. I wouldn’t hesitate to buy one of the more common ones now though, if the prices hadn’t become rediculous. I always liked shiny bolt guns and Contenders, but have gained a new appreciation for military guns, and for all the disparaging opinions on .30 carbine and the gun made for it, I’d actually like to have one some day as well. Please, do a story on that one as well!

  40. An AK is a fun gun that if one wants it can be a semi serious weapon when used on soft skinned up close mammals. It is good a piece of metal as one could ask for in the lazy mans plinker with a louder bang on time every time than his 22.
    The only weak points of the system is the magazines springs, and you can buy just them for dirt or buy 5 mags for a hundred bucks+
    The better calibre is of course the 5.45×39 and one should own an AK in that as well as older 7.62×39 .
    Just good plinkers and when SHTF does come about will not be only weapon you will have to worry about
    that will be pointed at your 4″ @ 50 meter center of mass.

  41. A lot of people misunderstand the AKM and why its so inaccurate. The AK was designed as a military rifle and for a specifically combat doctrine! The Soviets realized future wars would not be static position with a lot of long distant shooting but a dynamic fast paced fluid battlefield and also one with a lot of urban warfare. Both scenarios’ dictate a compact high rate of fire weapon that is compact and lightweight. Accuracy be damned at the combat ranges envision. Soviet doctrine said an objective was to be bombarded into rumble and then over ran with tanks and APC’s. After the troops dismounted they would spray anything that moved with automatic fire. Thats why safe is up and the second position is full auto. By 200 rds the military version is a smoothbore because of the soft steel used in the barrels and isnt chromed.
    The AKs people in the US buy are actually better than the issue weapons in the countries they came from because the barrels are replaced with US made barrels. As the author said 50-100 yd brush gun is the best use for these weapons.

  42. I,have 3 and boy you can hunt with them. #1 Is made in Russia , and for a lot of reasons has not been shot much. # 2 Is a Yugo under folder, as I call it my truck gun, model 70 something, who cares, it will get the job done, and I do not worry about dings dents, Ect. As a matter of fact, this weapon is “THE MOST OVER LOOKED WEAPON” AS IN MY TRUCK GUN , you would be hard pressed to find something better, for a said task witch are many, and can be loaded with a lot of ammo, and will not break the piggy bank, & the ammo is somewhat still cheap. All of the above are AK 47, The next one I ,have is a old Viper, made by MOLOT in Russia , However it”s a AK 74- 5.54 X.39, more or less a .22 Cal And not 7.62 cal. This weapon has been named, “SPARKY”… When you hit a 8” plate at 100 Yrds, boy the sparks do fly, and this one is cheaper too shot than the AK 47, As there is a lot of ammo out there very cheap. Every Man should own one, if for nothing more a “TRUCK GUN”… or just putting Bacon on the table..It will always go bang, and will never have any problems, AS A “TRUCK GUN” , You will be hard pressed to find a better weapon at that cost, and a 3 year old could clean it, with lets say 30 Min. of how do I do that.PS: All but the YUGO UNDER FOLDER , Have a scope attachment on the left hand side of the receiver, hell even the YUGO MIGHT, as I’VE not had it out from behind the seat as of lately….or cleaned for that matter. But rest easy, with a 30 Rd. Mag I, can bet my life on that type of weapon , and its going BANG EVERY TIME…Thank You, G.W.O.

  43. I never considered it for hunting. It is not very accurate with open sights in my opinion. I put a 3X scope on mine just for fun and that made a huge difference in accuracy. Using an AK for hunting, I would feel silly. If I was ever seen in the woods with a 30 round magazine in it the DNR would have to inspect the magazine. Some states do require the magazine be plugged in some way to ensure only 4 rounds in the mag and one in the tube. I just like mine for target shooting. But the article was informative, thanks.

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