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-   -   Just got an upper in 7.62x39 (http://www.firearmstalk.com/forums/f20/just-got-upper-7-62x39-80630/)

rachilders 01-07-2013 08:08 PM

Just got an upper in 7.62x39
 
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I was at a local gun show last weekend, the first one here since the Newtown shooting. Military caliber ammo cost 4 times what it was less than a month ago and most military style rifles were selling for at least twice their pre December rates. Hi-cap rifle mags were averaging 2-3 times the pre Newtown prices. OTOH, there was plenty of ammo available for sale, no shortage of magazines and there were about as many "black" rifles available as usual. I have plenty of ammo and enough AR's and AK's in the safe already so I wasn't looking to buy a new rifle.

However, I've been interested in a .30 cal/7.62 conversion for a while. I know there are AR's in .308 but I was looking for something more manageable, better suited for shorter ranges (under 300 yards) and home defense. Essentially an AR version of the 30-30. Though I'd like a 300 Blackout, they are harder to find than chicken teeth and cost 50% more - a LOT more in some cases - than other calibers... if you find one. To shorten the story, I broke down and bought a complete NIB Bushmaster upper with two 26 rd mags at the gun show in 7.62x39. It will go on one of my M&P-15 rifles. Best of all - especially considering the current run on anything "tactical" - it was actually $100 LESS than the $800+ MSRP listed at the Bushy website.

FWIW, while I'd still like that 300 Blackout, I've also liked the idea of an AR style rifle firing an AK round since you'd get the versatility of the AR platform with the extra "bang" the AK round brings to the marriage. There is also the availability and price advantage (at least before the current scare) of the 7.62x39 ammo over almost any other caliber other than the 5.56/223. It seemed like this combo of features offers the best of both worlds so I finally jumped on the 7.62 upper when I saw it. It comes with a 16" 4150 chrome-moly steel w/chrome-lined barrel/chamber and removable carry handle.

Since I just got the upper I haven't shot it yet and was wondering if anyone here has/had a 7.62x39 upper and their opinion of it, especially the Bushy. The pic below is of the same upper I purchased that I got from the BM website.

Quentin 01-07-2013 08:26 PM

The main issue with 7.62x39 in an AR is getting it to feed reliably. I'd try it out soon while prices are still high. (If you decide to resell it.) RRA has a new magwell design that apparently solves AR feeding issues in this caliber.

rachilders 01-07-2013 09:22 PM

I'd heard that many of the problems were with people replacing just the barrels and bolt carrier group on an existing upper. This one is made from the ground up for 7.62x39 and so are the mags. Hopefully, that should solve most of the feeding problems. That's why I was interested in hearing from people who had an upper that's specifically designed around the 7.62x39.

SSGN_Doc 01-08-2013 03:19 AM

A friend has a 7.62x39 built upper. It still had feed problems. The problems usually come from the lower because of the mag well of the AR being fairly straight, and the soviet round being designed with a case taper that requires a pretty consitent curve for smooth feeding. The transition from the curved portion of the mag to the straight neck required to fit the AR magwell is usually the problem. My friend found that 5 round hunting mags worked OK because they lacked the transition area. It was fine with him because he only wanted the 7.62x39 upper for hunting deer and hogs.

RRA designed a whole new lower that basically has an AK mag well, so that actual AK mags can be used. It was that big of a problem.

rachilders 01-09-2013 10:30 PM

UPDATE: It's been raining for several days but I decided to go to the local range and try out the new upper. Because of the weather I limited my shooting since this trip was really just to see how well the new upper would shoot and look for potential problems.

First, the Bushmaster upper fit on my M&P-15 lower like it was made for it. Snug, with no excess play but not so tight I had to force it into place. I tried shooting various plate size (11") targets at ranges from 50 feet to 50 yards, using the two factory supplied 26 rd magazines. I fired a total of 100 rounds using several brands of ammo, mainly Wolf & Tula. Aside from the occasional flyer, all hits were within a 2" diameter circle, right on point of aim and there were no feed or ejection problems. I did not fire any long runs of ammo since this is a new and untried upper, though I did fire a handful of 2-3 round quick bursts. About half the shots were fired as single, aimed fire. The remainder were either the quick bursts or 3-4 round aimed bursts. Recoil was definitely more noticeable than using a 5.56 and there is also a noticeable difference in noise level.

It's not a tack driver, but I wasn't going for accuracy plus I was using the factory sights. Besides, I am not looking for a gun that shoots sub 1" groups at 500 yards, rather "combat accuracy" at 100 yds or less. My closest comparison would be to shooting a 30-30. Reliability was excellent, though after only 100 rounds the question is still not fully settled yet. Fit and finish seem excellent. To look at it you'd think the Bush upper was OEM from S&W when it's installed on my M&P lower. I just ordered two more magazines from the Bushmaster web site (they were actually in stock!) to go with the two I got with the gun.

Overall impression... I like it. At this point, it looks like this is a keeper. :D

Nectoxicdragon 05-02-2013 01:45 AM

Please stop with the myths!
 
Gentlemen, I may be new here and this may be a three month old thread but PLEASE Stop the myths!
First off there is no such thing as a "round designed for a curved magazine". In fact the 7.62x39 was never designed for the AK, it first saw service in an SKS with a stacked internal magazine not a so called "Banana Clip" Next the mag well has absolutely NOTHING to do with the feed of a round, it only facilitates YOU inserting the magazine. The feed issues found on ARs with the 7.62x39 are ALL centered around TWO Specific items, the first is CONVERTED magazines. People attempting to alter a 5.56 magazine to feed the wider 7.62x39 are doomed to failure, the angles of the ears of the mag are not the same, and being that they are heat treated in order to maintain their shape changing them means they will eventually lose the new shape and cause feed problems. The NEXT and most common issue is the ammo itself. I doubt any of you were around during the McNamara fiasco during the Vietnam war, where the elected idiots decided to purchase CHEAP ammo for our troops. This ammo was subgrade, and dirty as hell. it gummed up the M16s and cause them to fail and resulted in the deaths of thousands of US troops. To this day, the Armalite Rifle design still suffers from a bad name due to this issue, even though it was not the fault of the rifle. Cheap, soviet surplus, and Wolf made 7.62x39 ammo was made for a pair of rifles that were not sensitive to dirty ammo- the SKS and the AK. And using this in the AR without increasing the frequency of cleaning (to the level of every 100 rounds or so) WILL result in failures. this again is NOT the rifle. And on the same issue this ammo is NOT very accurate. Hence the bad name the AK carries on accuracy, yet when shot with Winchester brass cased ammo it WILL shoot sub moa when machine rested, which removes any shooter error.

I've been building AR's for well over 30 years, I've dealt with many different issues and problems, I'd venture almost every one ever encountered. There are only two issues that cause regular failures that do not involve damaged parts. Dirty or bad ammo or improper magazines. These are the same issues that affect EVERY gas operate semi and full auto rifle ever designed. This is a simple fact of physics. So PLEASE refrain from spreading the "I've heard" myths and stick to what you have actually had experience with. It will save everyone a lot of head aches and make it easier to figure out the real problems that pop up with a firearm.

Quentin 05-02-2013 03:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nectoxicdragon (Post 1233615)
Gentlemen, I may be new here and this may be a three month old thread but PLEASE Stop the myths!...

I've been building AR's for well over 30 years, I've dealt with many different issues and problems, I'd venture almost every one ever encountered. There are only two issues that cause regular failures that do not involve damaged parts. Dirty or bad ammo or improper magazines. These are the same issues that affect EVERY gas operate semi and full auto rifle ever designed. This is a simple fact of physics. So PLEASE refrain from spreading the "I've heard" myths and stick to what you have actually had experience with. It will save everyone a lot of head aches and make it easier to figure out the real problems that pop up with a firearm.

You forgot the rest of the MEAL! Lubrication is a key issue. Poor extraction could be due a damaged part.

redhorse99 05-03-2013 01:33 PM

You, Nectoxicdragon, answered my question about the mags that I posted yesterday. Will not be trying to alter the factory mags.
Thanks

purehavoc 05-03-2013 05:41 PM

I would get a 20 rd Pmag , spray some pledge in it and give it a go with the 7.62X39 ammo you might be surprised how well it works ;)


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