AR, AK, or SKS?

The #1 community for Gun Owners in Texas

Member Benefits:

  • Fewer Ads!
  • Discuss all aspects of firearm ownership
  • Discuss anti-gun legislation
  • Buy, sell, and trade in the classified section
  • Chat with Local gun shops, ranges, trainers & other businesses
  • Discover free outdoor shooting areas
  • View up to date on firearm-related events
  • Share photos & video with other members
  • ...and so much more!
  • kingofwylietx

    Well-Known
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Feb 29, 2008
    1,424
    21
    DFW area.....Wylie.
    I am thinking about buying my first rifle. I have plenty of pistols and am also a pistol hunter. I am thinking about getting a rifle for plinking, target shooting (non-competitive), and hog hunting (typically 100-250 pound pigs at less than 100 yards). I have only shot rifles a few times and don't know much about them.

    I want a semi-auto rifle. I want to be able to do some target shooting, so I don't want something that has special ammo. I am looking for something that is flexible....hunting & target shooting.

    I have considered the Benelli R-1, as it looks like a good rifle. I don't want to rule anything out, so I am exploring the AR, AK, and SKS choices. Like I said, I don't know much about them.....besides the SKS's seem to be an old design, the AK's are what our troops are facing, and the AR's are semi-auto versions of our military rifles??? I like the idea of using a military style rifle because of their higher capacities for ammo and the ability to accept lights and such.

    What do you guys think? Can I get a Cliff Notes version of pros & cons of these rifles? Is there something else I should consider?

    I am planning to budget approx $1000. I don't mind spending more if their benefits justify the additional expense......and I don't mind spending less if I can get a decent shooter.

    The floor is yours............you have my ears [err, eyes, in this case].
     

    stockFD3S

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Apr 19, 2008
    203
    1
    Leon Valley, TX
    Handle them all and see what you like better. What you like and what someone recommends may not be the same.

    My recommendation would be for an AK-74 variant. Great for plinking/target shooting as it is currently one of the lowest cost rifle round (5.45x39) on the market and it is relatively accurate. I don't have experience with this caliber and hunting but I do believe it would be sufficient. I've read it works well on humans.

    YouTube - M16 A1 (5.56mm) vs. AK-74 (5.45mm) [ Test Fire ]

    At your price range, you could pick up the rifle and several thousand rounds of ammunition. That is always a plus in my book.
     

    mac79912

    Well-Known
    BANNED!!!
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Mar 4, 2008
    1,666
    21
    I have all and the AR is my favorite as I can upgrade and add all kinds of accessories.But the AK shoots cheaper ammo and is easier to strip and clean.If you decide to get a sks then try to get one with a milled reciever as it is a better quality rifle.The Yugo AKs are really nice and are a step up from the Romanian AKs,my next AK is going to be a Polish tantal in 5.45x39.Sorry I cannot choose one but all these rifles are a good choice.
     

    phatcyclist

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Feb 22, 2008
    882
    21
    Austin, TX
    The AK and SKS are not going to be as accurate as the AR, but they shoot a round that is better for hunting. Not saying you couldn't take a 150-200lb pig with a .223, but the 7.62x39 is a better choice for most game. The task of cleaning an AR is a daunting one if you are not familiar with rifles. The SKS and AK are fairly simple, the AK being the simplest to strip down and clean. My Yugo SKS was nearly impossible to get the trigger group into if I took it out, it required a lot of force. You don't have to clean it often if you don't shoot corrossive ammunition.

    As far as the 5.45x39 AKs, I would stay away from them as hunting rifles. I don't know of any soft-tip ammunition for them, and there is no chance of reloading for them in the forseable future.

    My pick would be an SKS, it's a little harder to take down than the AK but much less so than the AR. It's in the middle of the other two for accuracy, but it shoots a potent round that should do for most hunting around here.
     

    50calRay

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jun 17, 2008
    210
    1
    blah
    You supposed to clean an AK :confused:

    Well one of these days I'll look into it. Anyhow, what about an AR chambered in a .308 or 7.62X39?
     

    TalonRob

    Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jun 17, 2008
    66
    1
    Houston, TX
    King,
    Shopping between an AR and an AK/SKS is really comparing apples and oranges. The AR is a much more versital design as you can swap uppers to switch between diferent barrel lengths or calibers. The AK/SKS is designed to be a dirt cheap battle rifle for the communist hordes. Because of the differences in the quality of ammo, the 7.62x39 will be much cheaper to purchase. The .223 / 5.56x45 ammo will be more expensive and more accurate and it is reloadable of you care to do so. The AR will also allow you to buy a .22LR conversion kit and save a ton of money on ammo, but still shoot bigger stuff when you want to.

    As for the hunting aspect, either will work well with good ammo. In .223, I recommend the Winchester Power Point 64 gr soft point ammo. It will drop a hog or whitetail inside 100 yards with no problem.
     

    kingofwylietx

    Well-Known
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Feb 29, 2008
    1,424
    21
    DFW area.....Wylie.
    From what I have read so far, I think I would like to get an AR (for the versatility and accuracy). I see that most of them are .223, is it common to see them in .308? I would probably prefer .308 and I really like the idea of an interchangeable barrel that I could plink .22LR when desired.

    What are some of the 'better' brands? Any recommendations?
     

    Enron Exec

    Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Apr 23, 2008
    101
    1
    Behind 16 rnds of 9x19mm
    The two major 308 AR manufactures are Armalite and DPMS. Id go with the former if u want resale value, but both are good performers.

    On the downside, 308 ARs are kinda heavy for hunting IMO, but that s could just be me.

    Generally, you wont be able to swap between 308 and 223 uppers on an AR lower.

    IMO, and everyone is gonna have a diff one, the best AR manufactures are Noveske, LMT, and then Colt. The differences are somewhat minor in that 95% of most owners wont be able to tell the difference. I love my budget Eagle Arms Armalite, never a hickup in over 2k rnds with over 8 diff kinds of ammo.
     

    malladus

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jul 20, 2008
    275
    1
    Houston-Dallas
    Another option is to get a 223 Ar of your liking then buy differient uppers for it in the various calibres you are interested in. You can get uppers in 7.62x39 so you can shoot cheaper milsurp stuff, there are also some in 5.45 if you want to go for cheaper surplus, then for hunting you can swap out for one in 6.8 SPC, or varmit in 204 Ruger, and the list just goes on and on.

    Nice thing is since all the sights/scopes/optics/etc are attachde to the upper, you can easiely create a library of sorts of weapons. Only limiting factor is the lower and how you have the stock on it set up. And even now that is getting to the point where you can get several nice adjustable ones that are good for carry and bench shooting.

    Not sure if I'll make it to the DFW shoot, but if I'm there I'll have two or three ARs with me, my HK91 and and M1A. The HK91 is weight wise close to a .308 AR. You can try them out and see which you like better.

    Or I can maybe meet you some time out at Garland and let you try them out.

    Malladus
     

    Texas Patriot

    Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jul 17, 2008
    115
    1
    Spring
    When you said you wanted to do "target shooting" if you meant, precise, and accurate shooting, then that's one thing. If you meant plinking, fun shooting, bouncing cans along the ground type shooting, then that's something else.

    I have all 3 rifles you describe. The AR's are more accurate, but this precision requires more care in keeping it clean. The AK is an absolute hoot to shoot. It will always have top marks on the "cool factor' as far as fun guns go. They are also the top of the list for reliability. It is accurate, but not a "target" rifle. The SKS is a little more accurate than an AK but is generally limited to a 10 round mag. Hi cap mags are available, but some are not very dependable.

    All 3 are good platforms and fun to shoot. I took a deer last year with my AR, but others have done the same with AK or SKSs as well.

    If possible, try out some that friends have and see which you like best.
     

    kingofwylietx

    Well-Known
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Feb 29, 2008
    1,424
    21
    DFW area.....Wylie.
    Not sure if I'll make it to the DFW shoot, but if I'm there I'll have two or three ARs with me, my HK91 and and M1A. The HK91 is weight wise close to a .308 AR. You can try them out and see which you like better.

    Or I can maybe meet you some time out at Garland and let you try them out.

    Malladus

    Aren't you the one that got the ball rolling on this? You gotta go.....

    I am certainly open to meeting up at the Garland range, I'm pretty flexible on the weekends.
     

    malladus

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jul 20, 2008
    275
    1
    Houston-Dallas
    Yeah, I got it started rolling. However work seems to have its own plans for me. Got a client that only wants me on-site when the facility is shut-down because my drilling rig and his chemicals don't mix well. So answer is to work when the plant is shutdown on the weekend.

    My boss and him are negotiating the cost difference. If he doesn't like it I may still get to come play.

    Malladus
     

    50calRay

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jun 17, 2008
    210
    1
    blah
    I have found AR-10 and AR-15, there seems to be at least a model 1 and M4 (I assume model 4). I'll try Wikipedia for the differences.

    I believe the M4 is a millitary rifle...short barrel with select fire switch? They maybe talking about an M4 barrel with a fixed mounted long flash hider?
     

    dglockster

    New Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jul 13, 2008
    36
    1
    kingofwylietx,
    If I am interpreting your name correctly, you are close to both Dallas and Ft. Worth. There are several gunshows coming up and you can attend one or all to handle the rifles you are interested in purchasing. The schedule for the shows is below.


    - Saturday, September 13, 2008
    - Sunday, September 14, 2008 Will Rogers Center

    - Saturday, September 20, 2008
    - Sunday, September 21, 2008 Dallas Market Hall Saturday,

    - September 27, 2008
    - Sunday, September 28, 2008 Amon Carter/Will Rogers
     

    idleprocess

    Active Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Feb 29, 2008
    450
    1
    DFW.com
    Generally, you wont be able to swap between 308 and 223 uppers on an AR lower.

    "Generally"? It is absolutely not going to happen.

    As far as the AR platform goes, AR-15s chamber .223, and AR-10s chamber .308 . AR-15 lowers are fairly versatile, and with modification can accept other calibers such as 9mm, .45ACP, 6.8 SPC, and other calibers with a footprint similar to .223 .

    The AR-15 magwell is not large enough for the .308 round, period.

    AR-10s aren't anywhere near as modular as AR-15s. One cannot swap uppers and lowers between manufacturers. There are fewer accessories available for the AR-10 as well.
     
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Aug 6, 2008
    99
    1
    Whitesboro, TX
    I dont think any AK could be a serious target rifle. They simply are not designed to be that precise to begin with. Go with a nice 1:7 twist AR or one with a match barrel. :cool:

    I guess it depends on your definition of "serious". I shoot tennis balls floating down the Red River a lot and at 80 - 150 yards, I can hit them more often than not shooting freehand open sights Wolf ammo with my Polish Tantal AK-74 (with the stock folded out). That's good enough for me. My AK is definitely more accurate but it has an EOtech sight on it. PLUS, .223 ammo is considerably higher than 5.45. You might get it cheaper but the Fort Worth gun show usually has 5.45x39 Wolf ammo (no lacquer) for $108/500 rounds.

    Plus, the AK rifle is less than half the cost of the AR.

    I have a Norinco SKS and it shoot very well for an SKS but I sent the trigger group in to be worked over and had Wilson springs installed in it.
     

    Hoji

    Bowling-Pin Commando
    Rating - 100%
    36   0   0
    May 28, 2008
    17,934
    96
    Mustang Ridge
    The AK and SKS are not going to be as accurate as the AR, but they shoot a round that is better for hunting. Not saying you couldn't take a 150-200lb pig with a .223, but the 7.62x39 is a better choice for most game. The task of cleaning an AR is a daunting one if you are not familiar with rifles. , but it shoots a potent round that should do for most hunting around here.


    You are kidding when you describe taking an AR down as "daunting" aren't you? Have you ever taken one down? It is ONE PIN {two if you want to remove the upper} there are TWO pieces. The charging handle and the bolt.

    People that score 42 on the ASVAB can do it with ease. I suspect you have never taken one down or you would not make such silly statements

    Daunting indeed.
     
    Top Bottom