Wednesday, May 06, 2009

So, what's the difference between a Russian AK and a Romanian AK?

Well, where was I. Oh yea, the Assault Gun Ban in the 1990s.

Just when the Romanians were about to begin to import all their cool AK-74 type rifles in the country, some pencil necked, syphilitic moron decided to force all the countries selling AKs to tap weld the muzzle nuts, replace the butt stocks and pistol grips with a "thumb hole" stock, and grind off the bayonet lugs. This meant that guns that were now considered "Pre-ban" guns soared in value. Today, a pre-ban gun that looks something like this...

which originally sold for $350 to $400, new in the box, will today set you back about $2000 or more. Thank you, Slick Willie, for making it so that guys like me have to spend a LOT more money for the things we want. Good job, fat boy!

I was one of those guys back then who always wanted an AK but couldn't make myself plunk down the money until I thought they were about to dry up. Same phenomenon that you see going on today with this latest dufus in the White House. He deserves an award.

Gun shows are as crowded as ever, with people buyin' up stuff at inflated prices because they think it all might become illegal or scarce. I think, in the end, it'll probably be just like it was with Clinton, but we'll see.

Anyway, during the ten years of the ban, the variety and quality of AKs on the market actually got better. To live up to the letter of the law, sellers originally began offering the crappy rifles I told you about last time and just described. Thumb hole stocks and all. Those things were selling originally for less than $200, and with slight, but completely illegal modifications, a person could take off the thumb hole stock and attach a butt stock and pistol grip. The result of the ban then? Many more crappy guns on sale and a whole new criminal class of people who just wanted their semi-auto guns to look like the real thing.

Eventually, importers began selling "Parts Sets". Here's a shot of one.

These are foreign made (this one is Polish, and yea, I have one of these too) military rifles that have been cut in half, rendering them useless. Again, in compliance with the ban, a domestic manufacturer could reassemble that gun on an American made receiver (for which you must sign the paperwork, just as if you're buying a rifle), with enough American made internal parts, and the buyer could have a well made copy of a foreign military rifle with a pistol grip and all. Those finished guns were selling for about $500 until the election. Now they've gone up to $1000 or more. Pure profiteering, but ain't capitalism a blast?

I bought several of those in the last decade, and even found a few interesting parts sets that a friendly gunsmith could build for me special. One was a cut up Soviet made AK-47S.

That's the under-folder version of the original AK-47 that the Russians made for tankers, truck drivers, and paratroopers in the 1950s and 60s. I love it! It's one of my favorite toys. Those slab sided magazines you see in the picture are the original mags the Soviets produced for the rifle. They're rare, but I have some. You can't put a price on authenticity. Well, you can, but I'm a junky for this stuff, so what the hell.

If you want some, try this web site. Just scroll down till you see them. They'll sell them to you, but they'll ship them in two boxes. The housing will arrive first, and then another box will arrive with the spring and floor plate. Yep, more stupid shit we have to go through to avoid the stupid laws that have no real effect, other than to fuck with you and me. Nice, eh?

So, the Romanian rifles that began to show up in the mid-90s looked like this.

To their credit, the attached a really cool stock to it. It's the same stock they attach to their PSL sniper rifle. It's MUCH better than the crappy things the Chinese, Hungarians and Egyptians produced.

Also, like the rifles that were made for the military, the Romanians produced versions of these imports that shot 7.62x39 (the original AK round), 5.45x39 (the round the Soviet block switched to in the 1970s), and .223 (the NATO round). So, there was something for everyone. Plus, the rifles came with a scope rail on the left side of the receiver, just like the rifles the Soviets made for their Special Forces, and just like the rifles the East Germans were producing.

At the height of the stupidity, the Romanians actually produced this little number, specially for the California market (Kevin?). Yep, that's a pump action Kalashnikov. Hilarious eh? and an excellent example of your government working diligently in your interest, to keep you for having the toys that they think you shouldn't have. Yep, the Nanny State... patting you on the head and telling you to stop playing with that or you'll put someones eye out. Beautiful! Does that leave you feelin' like an adult tax payer in a free country? Or maybe like you just moved back home to live with your folks and your dad is still an asshole? Yea, me too.

Anyway, when the Assault Gun Ban died (thank God, useless piece of shit!), the Romanians began selling the real thing again, pistol grips and bayonet lugs and all. So, go back to that British site link, click on Furniture, pick yourself up the right wooden grips, put them on that Romanian gun and PRESTO!

You've got something that looks pretty damn close to the real thing (a Soviet AKM), and to me anyway, something as beautiful as they come. This is what my buddy Waters has been doing.

Now, these guns vary in the quality of manufacture. Your best bet is to get an American made rifle produced from a Bulgarian parts set, or just buy one of the Bulgarian rifles they sell at shows now. Arsenal is the company. Very nice work.

Anyway, it's just a question of money. How much do you want to spend and how much do you care about authenticity? Luckily, I got all my stuff before the latest unpleasantness, so I'm good to go. Happy as a clam, but still wishing I could find the mother fuckers who robbed me in 2005. May they rot in hell! May their syphilitic offspring... Oh, never mind. Cheers!


Kevin said...

Very cool! Yeah, that pump-AK is an abortion.

FHB said...

I see those in shows around here now and then. They're hilarious.

Mushy said...

Information overload! I need a beer.

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