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    Originally posted by mrm1775
    Now, to confuse you even more, I will break down the pros and cons so you can make an informed choice. This will get long, so I will put a link in my signature so I can reference it in the future.

    Range: Advantage to the AR. The 5.56mm round (and .223, you should look up the difference) has higher velocity and a flatter trajectory than the 7.62x39. As every Marine knows, the M16A4 (20 inch barrel) has a max effective range on a point target of 550m, and can suppress an area target at 800m. A good AK will be accurate to 400m, but for all intents and purposes it is a 200-300m rifle. The sights go further, but this really is for massed volley fire.

    Accuracy: Advantage to the AR. The same attributes that give it longer range also make the round more inherently accurate. Iron sights on the AR are also much finer and are among the most precise of their kind, whereas those on the AK are fast but somewhat crude. The AR also is also much more precisely made, so it is simply more consistent. I can squeeze out respectable accuracy with the optic I have on my AK, but it will never print groups as small as an AR. The AR is also a better platform for mounting optics.

    Recoil: AR, thought the AK is more than manageable, especially with a muzzle brake like the one I have. If you are a skilled shooter, it is not much of a concern.

    Handling: AR by a nose. Most AKs and ARs with 16 inch barrels are about the same length. The magazine releases are a matter of personal taste, but what really does it is the safety. It is just faster, quieter, and more convenient on the AR. The AR also has a bolt hold-open, which the AK lacks.

    Reliability: AK all the way. Get it dirty, run it without lube (not recommended), soak it in muddy water, throw sand in the ejection port, or dish out just about any other type of abuse and it will run like a champ. The AR will sputter and die. The attributes that make it the more accurate of the two make it less resistant to field conditions.

    The AK also experiences less fouling from its cycle of operations as it uses a gas piston operating system. This means that the propellant gasses cycle the action through impingement on the face of a piston at the front of the rifle and are vented there. The AR uses a direct gas impingement system in which the gas is redirected directly in to the bolt carrier group via a tube. In other words, it shits where it eats. This means that all of the particulate matter and hot gas goes to the last place you would want it. This not only makes the rifle dirty but leads to excessive heat build up in the chamber. I have actually seen rounds cook off and gas tubes glow in heavily used M16s. This also leads to parts wear. AKs, on the other hand, are known to have their handguards burst into flame (on full auto after a few hundred round drums), but it won't break the rifle.

    Durability: Edge to the AK, but both rifles will last you a lifetime is you take care of them. Spare parts are abundant for both as are extra magazines, but the latter gives the prize to the AK. Cheap steel AK mags are reliable and incredibly sturdy. You could use one to beat an insurgent to death and then load it up and fire as if nothing had happened. AR mags are universally more expensive but less durable. One dent in the side and you might as well throw it away. Polymer Magpul P-Mags and steel H&K mags hold up very well, but they are expensive.

    Penetration: Depends. The weight of the 7.62x39 gives FMJ an inherent edge over equivalent 5.56, but steel-core M855 (green tips) may actually have an edge over most commonly available 7.62. Armor-piercing rounds are available for the AK, but are uncommon.

    Lethality: Depends, but the AR has an edge. 7.62x39 is well known for its penetration but ironically not for its wounding potential. Most commonly available rounds are either FMJ or simple hollowpoints and, under most conditions, generally just punch a neat hole in the target and keep going. The 5.56mm and .223 ammo, on the other hand, has greater wounding potential due to its high velocity. In fact, this is why the Soviets eventually replaced their AKMs with 5.45mm AK-74s. There is a catch to this, as the M855 ammo designed for military use is designed to achieve maximum velocity from a 20 inch barrel, meaning it will not have as much punch in a 16 inch AR15, especially at long range. The upside to this is that their is a very wide variety of .223 ammo on the market that is designed for shorter barrels and has devastating effect upon a living target. Of course, its still not as cheap as the 7.62.

    Quality: As for consistency, you could probably give the edge to the AK. There are several good manufacturers of AR15s, such as Bushmaster, Stag, LMT, and others, and they can be relied upon to give you a good product. Watch out for cheaper brands, though, especially if the rifle is used. The AR design is very sensitive to the quality of the materials that go into its manufacture. On the other hand, AK quality is largely relative. A cheap Romanian AK will usually work about as well as a high end Bulgarian model. In my experience they don't even seem to vary too much in accuracy. If the parts are decent quality and it works, it passes the test. An AK is an AK.

    Aside from the just agonizing over the question of "AR vs. AK," there are other options you might want to investigate.

    1. Get a decent quality AK and a stripped AR receiver. That way you can have an AK now and build an AR at some time in the future. The receiver will run you less than $200 and is the part that has to be registered, everything else you can buy off the shelf.

    2. If you prefer the handling of the AR but want better durability, check out the gas piston uppers being offered by Patriot Ordnance Factory, LWRC, Bushmaster, and a few others. They solve the problems inherent in the original operating system, particularly in short barreled rifles, and so far have proven very reliable (though maybe not AK reliable yet). The downside is cost. Expect a new gas piston upper to cost you more than a complete standard rifle.

    3. Buy neither. There are other scary black rifles on the market that you are not considering. Hegs and I are both quite happy with our Sig 556s. That rifle gives you all of the advantages of the AR with much of the reliability of the AK. It is a little heavier up front, but I'm sure you're a strong guy. Owners of the Robinson XCR also seem to be very happy with it, and the best part of that rifle is that it is easily convertible to other calibers. The FN SCAR and Bushmaster ACR also look promising, and should be on the market before a ban goes into effect, though I wouldn't risk waiting around if you currently don't have an EBR.
    Nice breakdown, thanks for putting the time into it. I'm really starting to lean towards the AK, mainly because it seems like I could almost get 2 for the price of 1 AR. So in the event of a zombiepocolypse I could make up for the relative lack of accuracy by having a second rifle to put in wifey's hands. I can always pick up a denect hunting rifle later in case I ever need to do any distance shooting, since hunting rifles will probably be the last style of firearm that the government would ever try to ban...

    Comment


      Have any of you guys dealt with Atlantic Firearms? http://www.atlanticfirearms.com/beta/

      Comment


        Originally posted by bigpappaferg
        Have any of you guys dealt with Atlantic Firearms? http://www.atlanticfirearms.com/beta/
        Alot of the problems that you've noticed are market-driven, so don't be surprised.
        If you're truly interested in the AK platforms, AK clones, etc, look up Gabe Suarez' materials on the AK. He's a big proponent of the Saiga, btw


        Check out his BLOG & Sign Up for his free e-newsletter HERE

        He has more quality published material on the AK, marksmanship and handling, than anything I've seen.
        "Judo is a study of techniques with which you may kill if you wish to kill, injure if you wish to injure, subdue if you wish to subdue, and, when attacked, defend yourself" - Jigoro Kano (1889)
        ***Was this quote "taken out of context"?***

        "The judoist has no time to allow himself a margin for error, especially in a situation upon which his or another person's very life depends...."
        ~ The Secret of Judo (Jiichi Watanabe & Lindy Avakian), p.19

        "Hope is not a method... nor is enthusiasm."
        ~ Brigadier General Gordon Toney

        Comment


          I remember when M-4s were just being deployed to units in the 90's, all the officers and the suck-up NCOs clamored to get one, and then promptly bolo'd every range they went to with it.

          Meanwhile, I was happy with my M-16/M-203 picking off 300M targets like cans in my backyard.

          An M-4 is great if you're doing MOUT stuff or are a vehicle operator. As a battle rifle, I'd rather have a full-length barrel.

          Shit, I might just buy a 20" FAL. That's one goddamn sexy rifle, firing a goddamn sexy cartridge.

          Comment


            Actually, I just came across this:

            Credit: Oleg Volk:

            Comment


              Actually, not FAL related, but from the same series:

              Comment


                Originally posted by Phrost
                Actually, not FAL related, but from the same series:

                Sound Suppressors: Be a considerate neighbor! Keep It Down!
                "Judo is a study of techniques with which you may kill if you wish to kill, injure if you wish to injure, subdue if you wish to subdue, and, when attacked, defend yourself" - Jigoro Kano (1889)
                ***Was this quote "taken out of context"?***

                "The judoist has no time to allow himself a margin for error, especially in a situation upon which his or another person's very life depends...."
                ~ The Secret of Judo (Jiichi Watanabe & Lindy Avakian), p.19

                "Hope is not a method... nor is enthusiasm."
                ~ Brigadier General Gordon Toney

                Comment


                  I find her thousand yard stare and leather pants compelling, but the rifle is really sexy.

                  Comment


                    Originally posted by Colby
                    I find her thousand yard stare and leather pants compelling...
                    That's all just bait to get you into the Wicker Man... :5shocking
                    Last edited by Jim_Jude; 11/13/2008 2:02pm, .
                    "Judo is a study of techniques with which you may kill if you wish to kill, injure if you wish to injure, subdue if you wish to subdue, and, when attacked, defend yourself" - Jigoro Kano (1889)
                    ***Was this quote "taken out of context"?***

                    "The judoist has no time to allow himself a margin for error, especially in a situation upon which his or another person's very life depends...."
                    ~ The Secret of Judo (Jiichi Watanabe & Lindy Avakian), p.19

                    "Hope is not a method... nor is enthusiasm."
                    ~ Brigadier General Gordon Toney

                    Comment


                      Originally posted by Phrost
                      Actually, I just came across this:

                      Credit: Oleg Volk:

                      Not to be a dick, but that's a PTR-91, not a FAL. Also a fine battle rifle.
                      I'm not giving you my opinion, I'm telling you how it is.
                      Can't decide which evil black rifle to buy? My thoughts.

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by Phrost
                        I remember when M-4s were just being deployed to units in the 90's, all the officers and the suck-up NCOs clamored to get one, and then promptly bolo'd every range they went to with it.

                        Meanwhile, I was happy with my M-16/M-203 picking off 300M targets like cans in my backyard.

                        An M-4 is great if you're doing MOUT stuff or are a vehicle operator. As a battle rifle, I'd rather have a full-length barrel.

                        Shit, I might just buy a 20" FAL. That's one goddamn sexy rifle, firing a goddamn sexy cartridge.
                        When I was in the Hindu Kush I wouldn't have traded my M16, even as an officer. Long range capability is a hell of a lot more important in that kind of environment than personal convenience. Hell, I would have tried to requisition some M14s if they had been available.
                        I'm not giving you my opinion, I'm telling you how it is.
                        Can't decide which evil black rifle to buy? My thoughts.

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by Jim_Jude
                          That's all just bait to get you into the Burning Man... :5shocking
                          "Burning Man" like the movie with Nicholas Cage or Burning Man like the hippy gathering in the desert? The rifle might be required for both. You could knock down a sliver painted fat man on a unicycle at 500-yds no problem with that weapon...

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by Colby
                            "Burning Man" like the movie with Nicholas Cage or Burning Man like the hippy gathering in the desert? The rifle might be required for both. You could knock down a sliver painted fat man on a unicycle at 500-yds no problem with that weapon...
                            I meant Wicker Man. Fixed.
                            "Judo is a study of techniques with which you may kill if you wish to kill, injure if you wish to injure, subdue if you wish to subdue, and, when attacked, defend yourself" - Jigoro Kano (1889)
                            ***Was this quote "taken out of context"?***

                            "The judoist has no time to allow himself a margin for error, especially in a situation upon which his or another person's very life depends...."
                            ~ The Secret of Judo (Jiichi Watanabe & Lindy Avakian), p.19

                            "Hope is not a method... nor is enthusiasm."
                            ~ Brigadier General Gordon Toney

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by Sapphire
                              so since Obam got elected i think its time to stock up my arsenal. He proposed big change and i fear that that is what is going to happen. Any suggestions on what i should get? I'm a real noob to guns so i'm not sure, but I'm thinking something semi-automatic before he outlaws them.
                              Are you serious? He's not going to ban semis. Gun control isn't even one of his priorities.
                              Now darkness comes; you don't know if the whales are coming. - Royce Gracie


                              KosherKickboxer has t3h r34l chi sao

                              In De Janerio, in blackest night,
                              Luta Livre flees the fight,
                              Behold Maeda's sacred tights;
                              Beware my power... Blue Lantern's light!

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by Phrost
                                I am, but small "L" on that since the LP is generally full of twits.

                                I stand corrected on that bill.

                                However, here's Obama on the subject, from his own website:

                                http://origin.barackobama.com/issues...aw-enforcement


                                You don't get much more clear than that.

                                Also, the Tiahrt Amendment is what's keeping the government from building a national firearms registry so your local officials can justify paramilitary operations on you and your family should you break any law.

                                But hey, trust the Government. They have your best intentions in mind, especially the local branch. Just ask Marvin Heemeyer.
                                Thank Phrost for doing the legwork for you. A permanent weapons ban is a part of Obama's platform.

                                Comment

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