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Tire Biter
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've had an SKS for 16 plus yrs. After bubbafying it in several shameful ways I discovered it was a 54 Izzy nonrefurb, and did my best to restore it.

I have a boatload of stripper clips and plenty of ammo, and can perform a reload in about 5-6 seconds. No mags to lose or damage.

But, I also have several Tapco 20 rd mags, and I was curious about all the claims online that SKS owners can "reload faster with stripper clips than an AK owner can with mags." So I conducted a timed test. Even with the awkward magazine release and duckbill inserting procedure, I was able to consistently perform reloads in 2.8-3 seconds.

My conclusion is this (much of it restating the obvious): The standard fixed mag with stripper clips is still the most reliable system and is better for long term SHTF scenarios. However, the Tapco mags feed nearly as reliably, hold more rounds and reload almost TWICE AS FAST, making them perhaps more combat effective. Common sense and all the training I've ever participated in teaches that the less time spent with your weapon empty the better. The Tapco 20s offer twice as many rounds in a gunfight before reloading, the reload is faster, and again gives twice as many rounds when a reload is complete.

Using detachable 20 rd mags should produce a rate of fire about 2x that of the ten rd fixed with strippers.

Of course, I'm still a fan of the original sks design, and it does have some advantages for long term survival use. But there's a reason fixed mags with strippers/en bloc were superseded by detachable box mags.
 

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war comin, choose a side
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You could spend a little extra money and get a conversion kits so it accepts ak mags. That would give you twenty or thirty or drum alternatives. Then you wouldnt have to worry about that crazy sk mag. I personally cant stand them. I would rather use strippers, unless i got the ak mag conversion. Just my .02 take it or leave it. Use what you are the most comfortable with, that would be the best in the long run. :thumb;
 

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Tire Biter
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You could spend a little extra money and get a conversion kits so it accepts ak mags. That would give you twenty or thirty or drum alternatives. Then you wouldnt have to worry about that crazy sk mag. I personally cant stand them. I would rather use strippers, unless i got the ak mag conversion. Just my .02 take it or leave it. Use what you are the most comfortable with, that would be the best in the long run. :thumb;
Thanks for the suggestion. It would be an interesting project, and I'd consider trying it if the SKS was all I had or I simply couldn't afford anything else. As it is, I'll probably keep it stock and switch it out for the duckbills whenever I feel like it. I also have a Colt patrol carbine in my take-home car. Love ARs and shoot them very very well....will get one of my own eventually. Saving for a new rifle now, but deliberating between an AR or an AK/RPK to go with my 7.62x39 stockpile.
 

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war comin, choose a side
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Yeah my wife had an sk, i was considering the sk mags but after playing with it she didnt like it. She traded it for an ak. Thats a keeper :thumb:
 

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Personally I prefer the metal SKS mags.
I have a 20 rnd that I bought not long after buying the rifle in '94. My only complaint with it is the added bulk of the duckbill. That makes it awkward when carrying more than one or two. Its tough to find a mag pouch that will fit them correctly and if you just stuff them in pants pockets they tend to snag trying to get them out.

I have just recently seen the Tapcos, and even found a used one in one of the shops I was in. What concerned me about it was the way the edges around the duckbill were chewed up. Not sure how long this took to develop or if it was from an inexperienced user, but either way it didnt look like something I would want to have to deal with in a hurry.

Im all about the duckbills for simple plinking around the house, but I have decided that if/when the time comes that I need to fall back on it in an emergency it will have the tried and proven 10rnd box in it.

Thenaganghost, how much does that conversion cost and how hard is it to go back to the original box? I saw something a few months back but the individual who made it wanted you to send your complete rifle to him in Colorado for him to install the conversion in it himself.... Sorry, I am NOT shipping any of my guns off to ANYONE to have them do anything to my guns, short of manufacturers for warranty work.
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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I've never seen a conversion kit that allows an SKS to use AK mags. There's an aweful lot to converting one. If it was easy, kits would have been all over the market years ago. There is a kit that lets you trim the duckbill on the Tapco mags down to just a nub. That seems like a good idea for those who are interested. But a true AK mag conversion is going to be a gunsmithing project.
 

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Yeah, I answered my own question. I did some checking and the 'conversions' include the use of hacksaws and files.... No thanks. My SKS isnt some high dollar precision rifle but I think highly enough of it not to be hacking it up into something it wasnt designed to be.
 

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war comin, choose a side
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I have got the full story now. The guy i know that has a sk that holds ak mags, was withholding the whole truth. He told me it was a conversion kit, but really it turned out that his sk was made that way. Apparently, they made sk's like that some years back. I guess you could take it to a gunsmith and have it done.

I apologize for any confusion that may have been caused. I should have looked into it more before posting. Telling half truths and whole lies is not the way to go. I guess everything that i hear from him from now on will be taken with a grain of salt.

Again everyone, I WAS WRONG (it also doent help i was lied too), I APOLOGIZE FOR ANY CONFUSION. :(
 

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aka pop
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I have had 2 sks for about 15 - 17 years, I purchased 6 - 30 rd mags with them. I have put 3-4 thousand rounds thru each one using these mags. I have never had a jam, miss-feed. I know folks who have had nothing but headaches with the high capacity mags. I somehow bought the ones that are the exception in this case. I have a friend who has the same set up as I do and has never had a minutes trouble with his.
I have read endless stories of folks who had trouble with their sks and high cap mags and swear that stripper clips are the only way to go, I just feel lucky to not have had that problem.
 

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I have got the full story now. The guy i know that has a sk that holds ak mags, was withholding the whole truth. He told me it was a conversion kit, but really it turned out that his sk was made that way. Apparently, they made sk's like that some years back. I guess you could take it to a gunsmith and have it done.

I apologize for any confusion that may have been caused. I should have looked into it more before posting. Telling half truths and whole lies is not the way to go. I guess everything that i hear from him from now on will be taken with a grain of salt.

Again everyone, I WAS WRONG (it also doent help i was lied too), I APOLOGIZE FOR ANY CONFUSION. :(
Dont sweat it. There are conversion processes, and there are some that require extra components. But like I said above, it takes some permanent modifications.

Yes, a few years ago when SKS became so popular (seems to have been since 1994 but I havent done any research on it) some manufacturers recognized that the limited mag capacity was a problem and decided to redesign the rifles to make them more profitable. These are the same manufacturers that invented the 'paratrooper' models. While in military production there was no such thing. Manufacturers simply took surplus rifles and sent them back through the plant to have 4" cut off the barrels simply to make people want them for the cool factor.

Personally, my gun is from 1959 ( "end" of the Korean War) and actually was an unissued rifle for the Korean military, if what I was told was correct. That, in my opinion, makes it more valuable to me in its original configuration. I can easily put my 10rnd box back in and have it just like the day it rolled off the assembly line. I see no point in making extensive modifications to it, especially since its more of a back-up to my AR now.
 

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I just bought my unissued, matching numbered Yugoslav SKS 59/66 from a local dealer for $399 (plus tax). Packed in cosmoline, which I'm going to have to remove myself (thinking of trying the "Texas Oven" technique...wrapping it in an old blanket and sticking it in the trunk for a few days...).

Before buying I looked on-line at www.aimsurplus.com and found their price was $379 (plus $15.00 shipping, and a FFL fee of $30.00).

When I was considering a Yugoslav SKS (the attraction is better craftsmanship, a folding bayonet, and a built-in grenade launcher) about a year ago, the prices were $90 to $100 less than current prices.

Then again, gold was selling for about $800 an oz. and I didn't buy any of that either...

You can buy a Norinco (Chinese) SKS for anywhere between $250 up...but many of the parts are stamped, not milled/cut from steel (which make for tighter tolerances, and tighter tolerances make for tighter groupings, in my opinion ;) ).

If you want to buy used, "bubba'd-up" SKS', you can look on www.gunbroker.com - they run anywhere from $200 to $400 (+).
 

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Everybody seems to have a preference - I'm currently fixated on the Yugoslav, and all of it's attributes - but I'm not thrilled that it doesn't have a chrome lined barrell like the other Eastern bloc countries, and the Norinco/China SKS...but mine is unissued and I'm kind of particular about cleaning my weapons everytime I fire them - won't be much for me to carry some Windex along to the range and spray it down the Bbl and magazine to hold me till I get it home and clean it properly...others may not be as particular.

Some folks swear by their Russian, Chinese Norinco's, Albanian's, Romanian's, etc., I'm just floored by the performance of this 30 calibered weapon which rivals Western rifles, for half the price!?

Price is definitely what attracted me, performance FOR the price, is more than adequate!
 

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Packed in cosmoline, which I'm going to have to remove myself (thinking of trying the "Texas Oven" technique...wrapping it in an old blanket and sticking it in the trunk for a few days...).
Beer, heat gun, paper towels and Saturday morning - all you need :)
 

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You could spend a little extra money and get a conversion kits so it accepts ak mags.

There is no such thing as an SKS/AK-mag conversion kit.

Yes you can covert them to accept AK mags, but the process is difficult, it requires machining by someone who know what they are doing and I doubt that anyone can find such a person now.

If you want something to do on your SKS try this...



http://www.thesksmagadapter.com/index.html

Stripper clips are clumsy to use, rounds will drop off, they are not stored easily in a pouch and some clips do not feed smoothly. They're okay I guess, but the modified 20 round Tapco mag snaps in just like an AK mag.

And the size is perfect for the weapon--it is not too long allowing you to hug the ground closer when firing.

This gizmo works, and I suggest you try it.

Also--do not, do not use Tapco crap on your SKS.
Their stocks are terrible.

Use a military surplus fiberglass Russian stock--much cheaper and much more durable. You can spray a tad of paint texture on them, and get a nice grip around the trigger well--and make all sorts of easy mods because they are made of fiberglass.

One final note... do the slam fire mod to your SKS. It comes from Murray's guns, and it is a specially modded firing pin with a spring. Should the firing pin get jammed up on a regular SKS firing pin, the gun will fire full auto until empty. This mod prevents that--and is how the weapon was issued originally in the late 40's BTW.




ST
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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I just bought my unissued, matching numbered Yugoslav SKS 59/66 from a local dealer for $399 (plus tax). Packed in cosmoline, which I'm going to have to remove myself (thinking of trying the "Texas Oven" technique...wrapping it in an old blanket and sticking it in the trunk for a few days...).
Easiest way to remove cosmoline is to just strip it down into parts and haul it to the local coin op car wash. The hot soapy water from the pressure blaster will get about 95% of it out and soften what little remains in the cracks and crevices. Mineral spirits will remove that with little effort.
 
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