I posted a picture of my rifle the other day, and someone asked for more information, so here it is:
Given the choice between the AK or the AR I would take the AR every time. But as a gun nut, I would very much love to over every gun out there. Ever one. But having limited money and space I have to be selective with what I buy. Yet, for me, I find owning an AK worth while. Not only is it fun and an iconic weapon, the AK family of weapons is so very common in the world I feel it is well worth keeping a level of proficiency with it. So I like having one to training and plink with.
While 7.62×39 and 5.45×39 are good cartridges, I decided to buy one in 5.56×45, so I can use the ammo I already stockpile for my AR15s.
There are a handful of options in 5.56 AKs. Since I purchased mine, there have been a couple newer rifles to the market. If you talk to the hard core AK nuts their views on the 5.56 AKs are very diverse. I went with an Arsenal SLR106FR. Some would say it is the best 5.56 AK, others would say it is the worst. I choose it because it is one of more common options and the Circle 10 mags tend to be excellent.
When I purchased mine, there were a large number of SLR106F models for sale cheap. The F model is the full sized rifle, but no size optics rail. I found the model I wanted for sale (at a honestly overpriced price) from gomoose02 on Gunbroker. Gomoose02 aka Brothers Firearms Shop misrepresented the rifle I received and charged over MSRP because of their false claims. Like I dummy, I fell for it. But despite this, the rifle has worked out ok for me. Of all my dealings on Gunbroker, only twice were there major issues, and in both times the seller outright lied on their ads and in their communications.
How was this resolved? Never was, I got leave bad feedback for them, and in return they leave bad feedback for me. When you buy from Gunbroker, you pretty much have to accept that if the seller screws you, Gunbroker will do nothing. They have to screw a whole bunch of people before Gunbroker will consider banning them.
Anyways, back to the rifle.
The model I purchased came from the factory with a quad rail. Out of the box it came with a 5 round mag. In the photo below, I threw in an old Trijicon Reflex. gomoose02 was kind enough to throw in another mag. IIRC it was a promag. It was a mag designed for a different AK, and someone hacked it up to fit in the SLR106. It would malfunction every time I tried to use it. I threw it out.
Once I got some Bulgarian Circle 10 5.56 mags, the rifle functioned well.
Like the majorities of AK rifles I have used, this has crooked sights. An adjustment for windage had to be made on the front sight.
One of my favorite things about the SLR106FR is the ability to fold the stock. The AK100 style folding stock locks up like the proverbial bank vault. When it is open it is just like having a fixed stock. Then you can easily fold it by pressing the button on the left rear of the receiver to make the weapon more compact.
In use, the 16 inch barreled AK is similar length to a 16 inch barreled AR15. It is longer if you are using one of the more modern muzzle devices like the muzzle break it comes with.
But as I said, it is nice to be able to fold that stock for storage and transportation.
Often with guns I am a little torn between leaving them stock, or heavily customizing them. Part of me would love to order a Zenitco quad rail, railed top cover, etc. But I keep in mind that I mainly keep this gun to maintain familiarity with the standard AK rifle. Also I can’t afford that other stuff right now.
I did pick up a couple of accessories. Surefire makes a silencer mount that attaches to the 24mm Russian threads on the rifle. These always seemed to be out of stock everywhere. Then, on an almost random chance, I came across one on sale on Gunbroker. So, I now have the ability to mount my Surefire silencer on my AK.
My only complaint is that these three tines ring like a tuning fork when I shoot or when I bump the rifle. If Surefire ever makes a closed tine version, or better yet a Warcomp version I will spring to purchase it.
Russian muzzle threads on the AK are not exactly known for being perfect. There can be concerns about the suppressor being concentric to the bore. Fortunately I am using a .30 cal suppressor on this .223 cal rifle, pretty much eliminating any concern about baffle strikes.
Not that long ago I picked up a Russian Scope, a 1P29 Tulip. It is a cool scope, but not right for me. I’m currently trying to sell it. I tempted to just slap an ACOG on this rifle. You can read my write up on the Tulip here:
It is a fun gun. I don’t much care for the canted sights, but I can live with that. My biggest complaint would be that the Arsenal 2 stage trigger in it feels very slow to me. When I do something like practicing quickly engaging a target with multiple rounds, it feels like an eternity from when I release the trigger to when I can fire again. It might all be in my head, but it seems me that that the trigger in this gun makes it really slow for rapid fire. Someday, I might swap out this trigger for an alternative, if I do, I’ll write about it.