AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy
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AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy


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Old 08-10-2015, 02:19 PM   #1
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Default AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy

I have long heard comparisons, taste-tests, caliber debates and everything else associated with the American battle rifle of the last 50 years, the M16 (AR15 variants) vs. the Ruskie AK47 (and variants). Which one is better, and why (why not), the politics behind who used one or the other and of course import bans, stigmatization and the like

AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy - Auto & Semi-Auto Discussion

Only one way to properly evaluate and form an educated opinion on this topic that I know of: own and extensively shoot both. By no means does shooting one example of each provide a comprehensive view of the merits of one versus the other. We are certainly not talking about battlefield experience here either, we are basing this on shooting at the range (various positions), take down, maintenance and reliability. Here is how we went about this.

THE PLAYERS

Smith & Wesson M&P15 Optics ready. 16" 5.56 NATO barrel, chrome-lined. Iron flip-up sights are made by Troy, optic is a Vortex Strikefire. Using iron sights only, we shoot 2-2 1/2 inc groups at 50 yards. With red dot, group size is half of that. Avoiding apples to oranges comparison with AR red dot and no optic on AK, so eval is discussed with iron sights only

[IMG]AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy - Auto & Semi-Auto Discussion[/IMG]

Zastava AK47 N-PAP 7.62 x 39mm with Tapco T6 adapter, original iron sights, we shoot 2 1/2- 3 inch groups at 50 yards

[IMG]AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy - Auto & Semi-Auto Discussion[/IMG]


SHOOTING THE RIFLES

I have put 3500+ rounds thru each of these guns and my first comment is: BOTH are very reliable. I clean after every range visit and I'd expect this. Both rifles have stock triggers, not 3 lb pulls like my hunting rifles, more like 6-8.

Recoil on the AR is of course non-existent. This provides an advantage in that you are not tempted to anticipate recoil. The AK action absorbs a great deal of the 7.62 round's recoil, but the muzzle rise on rapid fire is a relative disadvantage IMO. Once you learn to account/compensate for this, it can become a non-issue

Simply put, it is easier to shoot the AR15 accurately than is the AK. If one knows how to shoot both, the differences are negligible inside 100 yards in terms of hitting center mass on human sized targets. (overall, and in general, I prefer the AR with an optic, the AK without)

CALIBER

we could chat this one up on the cattle drive all day long. I'll simply say this: in an urban environment, taking shots of 100 yards or less, with car doors and front doors to penetrate - as well as body amour - I'll take the 7.62 in a street fight any day. I'm a big guy, I can carry a little extra ammo weight



DURABILITY

OK here I need to rely on research as I am not interested in throwing either of these fine rifles into a mud puddle. Or drop sand into the receiver. Or drag behind my truck.
https://youtu.be/mzwdCCNwn4M

Let's just say the AK's reputation for durability speaks for itself, which is important to me for this simple reason: who knows, given any situation that requires a rifle to survive - how often you would actually get to maintain your rifle? Or how it would work if it DID get dropped in a mud puddle (something I would surely do sooner or later)

QUALITY

There is a lot more variability (people taking liberty with) AK designs than there are with ARs. It takes more precision to build an AR than it does an AK, and for that reason alone I believe your typical AR is better quality workmanship than a typical AK. Tolerances are tighter, etc, and in the case of th AK, the lose tolerances are a part of it's genius.

TAKE DOWN

The AK wins this race and it's not even close. Not even close.

CONCLUSIONS

I am very glad to be living in a country where one can own both of these rifles, at least the 'dumbed-down' versions. I doubt if I ever will have to chose one versus the other,
but if I did,
I'd grab my Yugo,
and never look back......

[IMG]AK47 vs AR15 platform: simple truths for an objective American boy - Auto & Semi-Auto Discussion[/IMG]
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Old 08-10-2015, 03:01 PM   #2
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Good review, Sergeant! I also have both and like both, everyone should be comfortable operating either. But I'd grab the AR if things starting hitting the fan. Curious why you think the AK is easier to take down, I see this advantage going to the AR. Pop two pins and you've got separate access to the upper if that's the problem - or the trigger group, etc if that's the problem.
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Old 08-10-2015, 03:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quentin View Post
Good review, Sergeant! I also have both and like both, everyone should be comfortable operating either. But I'd grab the AR if things starting hitting the fan. Curious why you think the AK is easier to take down, I see this advantage going to the AR. Pop two pins and you've got separate access to the upper if that's the problem - or the trigger group, etc if that's the problem.

Two pins, plus all the BCG jazz, charging handle, etc, vs Ak: pop off the cover, pull out spring and bolt group - wala!

plus small parts inside BCG, etc much more numerous than with AK.

May be me personally, but I can take down and re-assemble an AK twice as fast as an AR!

keep I mind too - I wanted to like the AR better (American design, etc) but I find myself trusting the AK more. Like I said caliber plays a big factor in this evaluation......
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Old 08-10-2015, 03:38 PM   #4
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Well both are easy to field strip, which doesn't require disassembling the bolt/carrier. Either one has small parts to lose if you detail strip in the field.

Both calibers are good, with pluses and minuses. Caliber shouldn't enter a platform discussion since you can get AKs and ARs in multiple calibers.
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Old 08-10-2015, 03:49 PM   #5
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Well both are easy to field strip, which doesn't require disassembling the bolt/carrier. Either one has small parts to lose if you detail strip in the field.

Both calibers are good, with pluses and minuses. Caliber shouldn't enter a platform discussion since you can get AKs and ARs in multiple calibers.
Caliber enters in as I have these two rifles in their original and most common calibers. For typical 'combat' distances I prefer a heavier bullet you get with the 7.62. For flatter shooing out past 150 yards I prefer the 5.56

Obviously we could talk about various configurations, but again, this isn't overly scientific, as stated, this is about 7000+ rounds downrage and my impressions/preferences. Some guys are going to prefer the AR and that 'system' and it gets to be Remington v Mossberg, Ford v Chevy, Coke v Pepsi after a while. Clear you prefer the AR as many do. I sure wouldn't kick my AR outta bed for eating crackers! (If you look at my comments, I am quite complimentary of the platform in key areas)
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Old 08-10-2015, 04:22 PM   #6
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Just curious? Why is a .30 caliber bullet better than a .224 in urban warfare? The .224 is easier to control than a .30 in close quarters. The penetration factors of an FMJ .224 is comparable or better.
The .224 has proven effective on soft tissue. It is strange also that so many AK-47 are now chambered in a .22 caliber as well? Does that mean that the Reds have changed their minds?
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Old 08-10-2015, 04:41 PM   #7
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Just curious? Why is a .30 caliber bullet better than a .224 in urban warfare? The .224 is easier to control than a .30 in close quarters. The penetration factors of an FMJ .224 is comparable or better.
The .224 has proven effective on soft tissue. It is strange also that so many AK-47 are now chambered in a .22 caliber as well? Does that mean that the Reds have changed their minds?
already wishing I had left 'caliber' out of this lol

I'll take the extra 250-300 lbs of energy at 100 yards. That's 33% more ballz at 100 yrds using FMJ. THAT'S why!

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Old 08-10-2015, 07:26 PM   #8
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They're both excellent rifles. Buy one, buy a box of ammo, and train the s*** out of it. Your skill level with the rifle will decide how well you defend yourself.
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Old 08-10-2015, 07:56 PM   #9
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They're both excellent rifles. Buy one, buy a box of ammo, and train the s*** out of it. Your skill level with the rifle will decide how well you defend yourself.
could not agree more!
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Old 08-10-2015, 08:15 PM   #10
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The AK47 (actually we are talking about the AKM as the milled AK 47 is rare) is a machine gun with a semi auto feature. The 3 position safety goes safe, auto, semi.

The M-16 variants are rifles with a full auto/burst feature.

The AK series were designed for fire superiority and massed fire (spray and pray). The AR/M-16 series are rifleman's rifles. (Pop em and drop em)
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