Firearms Talk banner

Is an AK really that bad?

4349 Views 33 Replies 22 Participants Last post by  theeuropeangoth
They say that the AK is obsolete.They say that the AK is inaccurate.They say that the AK is heavy.They say AK round is uneffective.They say they that the AK operating mechanism makes the rifle uncontrolable.

Actually, many people have many bad things to say about the AK platform.
But how many of them are true?

Let's examine some facts:
1)They say that the AK is obsolete
It can be easely and rapidly upgraded with rails system(almost on any part of the rifle), new handguards, muzzle brake, recoil reducing buttstock, new sights,different safety.You can keep the good characteristics of the rifle and improve the bad ones(Like the so-called ''un-controlability'', muzzle climb,etc....including bad habits...yes, many people don't even know how to hold/handle it...and then they say that the rifle is not accurate)
2)They say that the AK is inaccurate
Modern warfare consists in fighting at a distance 150-350m (160-382yds).For the records:Using any rifle with iron sights or other optics(Red dot, ACOG, Holographic,etc) which were not made for accurate/long range shooting(Usually, they're (sniper) scopes o similar optics) at a distance above 200m, is simply stupid(A waste of ammo).An AK can be used to shoot a target placed at 200m away.You don't need anything more than this.You don't believe it?Ask the Spetznaz and the best and well-trained armies/units around the world.
3)They say AK is heavy
What do you mean with ''Heavy''?The majority of assult rifles has a weight between 3.1 and 4.7(Depending on the model, ammo and design)kgs.An Ak pattern rifle can weigh from 2.1 kg(e.g. Galil ACE) to 4.1 kg(I'm just taking in consideration the assault rifles).Is that really that ''heavy''?
4)They say AK round is uneffective
Uneffective?It can pierce several human bodies,concrete blocks and many body armors(till level 3 protection).Do you have some complains regaring the bad ration between penetration and stopping power/Lethality?Try m67 ammo, developed by Serbs to make the 7,62 more destructive and behave like the 5.56x45.
5)The rifle is uncontrolable, especially during rapid fire/full auto
The AKs were ''designed'' as a ''machinegun''/''submachinegun''.Even Kalashnikov calls it ''Submachinegun''(Even if it has more characteristic of an assualt rifle, than a smg).It is not a carbine, it is not a sniper rifle, it is not hunting rifle.So you have to hold it properly to obtain the maximum performace.Many people simply don't hold/handle the weapon well or shoot the rifle by holding the shooting position/stance in the wrong way.The AKs have a long-stroke piston attached to the carrier, and it goes violently backward and forward.It's true...but you can minimize the effects by holding/handling properly the weapon, by holding correctly the shooting position and, obviously, with some practice.

Am I the only one who thinks so?
See less See more
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
Not at all. I think you're spot on man. The AK variant has proven itself to be an accurate reliable rifle. People who expect sub MOA accuracy from an AK variant rifle are just silly and are putting a lot of unrealistic expectations on the rifle. That's not what it was designed for. The same with the AR platform. They have a smaller "less effective" round and are rarely as accurate as people think they are. A battle rifle is generally a ~3 MOA rifle. You want more power and accuracy then get a .338 lapua or .300 win mag bolt rifle.
can i get a pic of the proper stance and holding position of an ak pretty please? and yes i am serious :-D
can i get a pic of the proper stance and holding position of an ak pretty please? and yes i am serious :-D
Go to YouTube and search Travis Haley and AK or Sonny Puzikas. There should be good video of them running AK with effective stance. Sonny is former Spetsnaz and has videos on AK drills, mag changes, etc.
The AK-74 is a great rifle. That 5.54X39 round packs a pnch.

The AK-47 is obsolescent.
Proper stance and hold

can i get a pic of the proper stance and holding position of an ak pretty please? and yes i am serious :-D
I haven't any picture right now....I can only take some and send them to you.

Some things are REALLY IMPORTANT:

BACK:The upper part of the back of the operator must be slightly curver forward.
ARMS AND SHOULDERS:The shoulder and the arms should be as close to the body as possible(When you shout the rifle, the recoil and muzzle climb will move the barrel up-right(if you're right-handed) or up-left(if you're left handed).Frankly speaking:It is just like shooting a thompson 1921...the stance/hold is very similar to the AK one.
HAND:Inicially, Russians trained their troops to grab the handguards.I would opt for the magazine or a foregrip(If present).
Knee:Slightly bent(weaver stance)

A golden rule to shoot properly an AK?WEAVER-LIKE POSITION!!!(Never keep your leg parrallel to each other!!)
See less See more
What you just described is pretty much the universal shooting position that MOST people inherently do not use. there must be something "natural" about leaning way back with your chest pointed to the sky while shooting, because you see so many people doing it instead of having that "athletic stance" with a forward lean into the weapon.

however, I'll say that the offset weaver stance is out dated unless you're just target shooting.

in a "gun fight" you want to square up to your target so you have more maneuverability, you can shift left/right, Forward/reverse as needed. try being mobile while shooting from the weaver stance. Plus, if you're with the military or police...or you're just one of those crazy guys ready for the Russians to invade over the N pole... If you're wearing body armor of any kind, the protection is designed to be "square on" to the chest/back, and turning yourself sideways into a weaver stance takes your body armor and moves it to the side, exposing your vulnerable sides to the direction the bullets are coming from.
See less See more
The AK is just as good as an AR is overall and it is more reliable
FullautoUSA said:
The AK is just as good as an AR is overall and it is more reliable
Spoken for pure myth...
Go to YouTube and search Travis Haley and AK or Sonny Puzikas. There should be good video of them running AK with effective stance. Sonny is former Spetsnaz and has videos on AK drills, mag changes, etc.
Thanks for the heads-up on Sonny Puzikas. Brings me back, way back. Thanks.
Thanks for the heads-up on Sonny Puzikas. Brings me back, way back. Thanks.
Nyet za shtoh.
How to hold and fire an AK 47

1. If the AK-47 or AKM was considered current technology, then I wonder why the Russian Army currently uses the AK-74 or even more advanced variants of the AK pattern of carbines, rifles, and machine guns.

2. The AK-47 is minute of man accurate at 200 meters. The test that the Discovery Channel executed where an AK-47 carbine and M-16A1 rifle were tasked with striking a target at 200 meters was not a staged event. It's difficult for the majority of riflemen to hit a 200 meter target with the AK-47's iron sights. The AK-74, by virtue of the 5.45x39MM cartridge it fires, makes the task somewhat easier with a flatter trajectory. The problem is that fine accuracy with a notch and post is more difficult than it is with a peep or ghost ring sighting mechanism. That said, no first world military uses iron sighted rifles or carbines today. Most rifles and carbines, to include AK-47's, are more accurate than most of their users.

3. The AK-47 is significantly heavier than the VZ-58 that fires the same cartridge. The steel magazines have significant weight, too. Obviously modern AK variants and AK magazine variants have significantly reduced weight. Even so, there is no AK pattern carbine in the world that is within 1 pound of an AR pattern carbine in the same caliber. AK carbines are heavier than necessary and so are AR carbines with forged aluminum lower receivers and buffer tubes. If the AR carbine had a polymer lower receiver and buffer tube, then the weight difference would be even greater. Incidentally, a fully loaded 30 round polymer magazine for an AR-15 or AK-74 happens to weigh about 1 pound. Carry your carbine around through thick brush in the foothills for several hours or more when it's 95 degrees outside and let me know if you don't notice the extra pound of weight (or more) of an AK-47 over an AR-15.

4. The M43 pattern bullets have a center of gravity more near to the nose of the bullet than the M67 pattern bullets which have a center of gravity more near to the tail of the bullets. Obviously the lethality of a bullet that will yaw or tumble upon hitting flesh is greater than the lethality of a bullet that will punch a nice clean hole through flesh. Given the availability of hollow point and soft point ammunition to civilians, I don't think there's any disadvantage over any other assault rifle type ammunition.

5. The AK-47 carbines were not controllable in fully automatic fire, which is why the AKM carbines had forward vertical grips and muzzle brakes. There's nothing any stance or grip can do to change the fact that a rather large and heavy chunk of steel is banging around inside the receiver. There are machine guns like the Ultimax that operate on a "constant recoil" principle where the operating parts never impact the rear of the receiver during cycling. The Ultimax is controllable in fully automatic fire. The AK-47 obviously wasn't designed this way.

Bottom line is that better technology exists today and has for quite some time. The AK-47 and the improved variants aren't bad carbines, rifles, or machine guns but they're not the greatest thing since sliced bread, either.

If reliability is more important than anything else (weight, balance ergonomics, optics placement, or magazine changes), then the extra pound of weight in an AK-74 vs a M-4 isn't a big deal. If you're like me and weight, balance, ergonomics, optics placement, and magazine changes are a bit more important than absolute reliability, then the AK is not as desirable as the AR-15.

I own both and use both. There's nothing really "wrong" with the AK or AR carbines.
See less See more
How to hold and fire an AK 47

There you is better than a bunch of words! haha. that's basically what I was trying to say in my post. feet shoulder width apart, athletic stance so you can go left, right, forwards, backwards, and squared up to the target. NOT a weaver stance with feet front to back and the rifle across the front of your chest pointing wherever your shoulder is pointing.
As a practical weapon of war, the AK is a suitable firearm. It is simple enough for tribesmen to maintain. It is tough enough to work under conditions that would make an AR a lightweight club. It is not a target rifle. Minute of man at 200 meters is good enough for combat. If you are shooting longer than that you need a rifle, not a carbine or a submachine gun. The cartridge proved quite effective against Americans in Viet Nam.

At close quarters, such as urban warfare, the AK is equal if not superior to the AR, because of reliability issues in a dusty, gritty environment. Battlefields that offer very long fields of fire would give the advantage to the AR.
If the AK-47 is not obsolete then why did the Russians start using the AK-74? If the 7.62x36 is just as good as the 5.56x45 why did they go to 5.54x39? Is it bc the 5.54x39 performs more like 5.56x45? I thank it is.

So a gun that is accurate only out to about 200m is all I need? How do you know what I need? Maybe I need something with more range but don't wont to carry a 110ba. That would drop your rate of fire by more than I am willing to exchange for accuracy and range. Plus a 110ba in .338 is way to heavy.

Ask anyone who has ever bin in a fire fight if they won't a gun that you can only control if you shoot it a certain way. Sometimes you have to shoot leaning around a corner, under a car, crouching down, ext..... Sorry but I'm not all about spray and pray. Ill keep my AR.
Cleaning a gun is a responsibility and if your only argument is that you don't have to clean your weapon, you have already proven that you are not responsible.
I've used both weapons extensively and seen them both give out. AK rifles need to be cleaned just like any other machine.
If you don't oil your car what will it do?
If you don't clean a gun it will fail..period.

AR's will work clean or dirty, wet or dry it doesn't matter. I trust mine with my life because I've seen what it can do under undesirable conditions. It doesn't take much to pop a pin, wipe out the action, and put a small drop of oil in a gun. AR's don't need to "run wet" either, that's a waste of oil. Just put a drop in the ports in the side of the bolt and you are good.
AKs are usually more accurate than most people give them credit for. And ARs are usually much more reliable than most people give them credit for.

Don't feel under armed with either, just adapt to the platform and learn to maximize its potential.
As it has been already said, the AKs (I'm talking about the 7.62 variants) generally work well in what they were designed for. There are so many different variants out there, that it's impossible to simply say that AK is or isn't obsolete. Some models are, some are not. Also depends a lot what you are using it for. Reliability wise I'm a fan of the rifle. Ergonomics and accuracy? Not so much...

During my service I got a pretty good idea what the Valmet/Sako RK rifles are capable of but other than that my experiences are limited to civilian variants of AKs.

The way I was taught to shoot the RK was to square up to the target, support hand on the magazine, knees slightly bent leaning forward and elbows as close to my body as possible. I generally don't like the idea of holding the rifle by the magazine, but with the RKs ergonomics and the gear we were using it was ok and gave enough support to shoot fairly accurately in close quarters. Firing full-auto with the RK? Not really ideal. The rifle is equipped with a flash supressor, not a compensator so the muzzle climb is pretty wild. Off hand, with short bursts you could usually hit what you were aiming for if the target was within 50yds. With a lot of practice one could learn to tame the recoil but it isn't easy by no means. The civilian versions of RKs are capable of 1 MOA accuracy with good ammunition but most of the service rifles I saw were more like 4 MOA guns in the hands of conscripts. Still, most were capable of hitting man sized targets up to 400m with iron sights. Weight? 9.4lbs with a full magazine, so yes they are heavy but I still carried that rather than the KVKK62 or the PKM :D Generally very reliable rifles, during winter the selectors occasionally froze up, but that was fixed with a good whack on selector with the magazine. Usually all other hiccups were caused by the user him/herself. Personally experienced only one stoppage, light primer strike with blank ammo(super hard primer?), never had any problems with live ammo.

All in all, reliable, accurate enough, ergonomics suck. YMMV.

And please, let's not continue the AR vs AK debate. They are both good rifles, let's just leave it at that.
See less See more
Lets see...if you live in a cave in the mountains in Iraq and have that or a rock to throw at your American "friends" you think the AK47 is a great weapon. When your buddies are toast, you can take their ammo and keep up the fight. Now is your gun absolete..I think not. You have in your hand the greatest rifle in the world, because it could save your life or end your enemies and it will shoot in a rainstorm or a dust storm. I had a SKS. Workmanship is a piece of crap, stamped out, cast iron nothin..but it will shoot like a champ. Now is it a good rifle? It will never be a Remington 700 but it does spit lead.
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.