Best AK Maker
Who is considered the best AK maker or what would be the order in which they are good from best to worst?
in my experience with my own guns, i would have to rank the russian makes at the top of the list. they were the originators, had the tooling, resources, and engineering to back them up.
from there, i would say bulgarian, hungarian, yugoslavian, a toss between the egyptian and chinese version, and then romanian. not knocking any of them, because they all had their own pros/cons.
i believe there were also some knock-off copies produced in other countries with backing from russia or china.
you also have the "improved upon" AK's, such as the Galil from Israel, and the Valmet and Sako from Finland, among others.
Best for accuracy, reliability?
I'd be willing to bet the Norinco, Russian and Arsenal milled receiver AKs are going to be the most accurate.
Froma collector perspective the Russian milled AKs are worth the most and most sought after. The next in line for a collector is a standard Russian or a Norinco/Polytech milled. After that it's the Norinco/Polytech standard AKs because of their build quality and lack of current importation into the U.S., and right behind them is the Maadi AK.
If you want an AK that most closely resembles a Russian but don't want to pay for a Russian get the Maadi made in Egypt as it's the closest to being a Russian without actually being one. Egypt bought the equipment from Russia, Russia delivered it, set it up and taught them how to build these rifles - they are essentially Russian AKs built in Egypt, if that makes sense.
The Yugoslavian AKs are very decent with the exception of no chrome. Yugoslavian ammunition is always 'hotter' than other countries though and they have to make the barrels and chambers beefier to compensate for this. Yugos are the 'tanks' of AKs.
The Romanian AKs are the cheapest - both in cost and quality. They're also the least sought after because of this and their half U.S.-made, half Romanian-made way of build.
The most expensive AKs are Russians and Arsenals, from I've seen.
i guess the original poster never did specify where the ak had to be made, my original list was for russian/eastern bloc/chinese type manufacturers..
if you open the doors to the western world, then yes, Arsenal, has to be considered in the top manufacturers. another would be Mark Krebs.
My friend has a milled Arsenal, I have a VEPR. We've owned them for years, and I think it's fair to say they are two of the better rifles.
I've shot both, and comparaing them, they are about even.
The VEPR is not milled, but an RPK machine gun reciever in used, so it is actually heavier and thicker then the milled. The VEPR is also more accurate, which is simply because the barrel is of better quality and originally designed for boar hunting. The VEPR also has nicer finish.
Both guns are very close though, the SLR has a nicer trigger IMO.
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