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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my new SKS already came in a folding stock, I have now installed a M16A1 style flash hider. Next I plan to convert it to AK style mags and put a Albainian style bolt carrier on it. Still thinking of making a bayo lug for Mauser style bayonets. (the original one was ground off) I also want to put Williams firesights on it, anybody have any experience with these? Are they durable? Hopefully I will soon get a camera so I can post pics.:)
 

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The Williams firesights are the red fiber optic sights yes? If so then you'll love the look of them, though it's pretty much assured that they aren't as durable as the original sights. Fiber optics are what, polycarbonate, like CDs and DVDs I believe. It's durable stuff, but it isn't steel or iron, and you shouldn't expect it to last like they will.

They ARE nice and bright though, got to handle an SKS before I bought mine that had them installed, and target aquisition is VERY fast. I doubt that you'll have to worry about the durability anyway though, with the hooded front sight and all.

I'd recommend against the albanian bolt carrier. The thought of the hook style charging handle IS nice, I thought the same thing myself, but once you inspect one, you'll probably change your mind. Level of workmanship was definitely the worst of any SKS parts that I've seen. Parkerizing was patchy, matte in areas and shiny in others, the grooves didn't seem truly straight(though it did seem to cycle properly, without any binding in the receiver)

On top of the fit and finish, the thing just really isn't as practical. The HOOK itself definitely looks better(though that's the ONLY thing about the Albanian bolt carier that looks better than a standard) than the charging handle of a standard, but its slippery, it's small, there's no knurling, and just plain doesn't work as well. Cosmetics aside, with no positive grip, there's no advantage, and the overall finish of the thing lowers the cosmetic value quite a bit.

I'd say that they're fine in an Albanian rifle, but I looked at a few of them, and I'd say whatever you've got probably deserves better, i.e. what it's ALREADY got. If you plan on working the carrier over a bit, polishing it up and refinishing it, then you could probably come out with a winner. If not, caveat emptor, andremember that the Albanians didn't have much to work with...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the tip

I was just interested in the Alby carrier for looks, If it's gonna be harder to manipulate I'll steer clear.:nod:
 

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Sounds like you want an AK. Making an SKS into an AK results in an overweight, oversized, plastic abomination. The only time I ever considered such a thing was when the ban was in effect and I wanted a folding stocked US compliant fixed mag stripped fed carbine.

What variety of SKS is yours? By AK style mags, do you mean actual AK mags or aftermarket 10+rd banana mags made for the SKS, mostly in the US?
 

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They work fine as far as I know, but the standard handle is much grippier. If you can operate an AK charging handle, then it's basically the same as the Albanian, and with a little spit and elbow grease you could probably get one shined up real nice lookin, and have it look a lot better than the standard carrier.

Try to get a look at one if you can, and decide from there. My dealer had a box full of 4 or 5, and I was interested, just didn't want to put work into them. I was hoping to just drop it in and have it look nicer, cause my Norinco's carrier isn't pretty either. I wish they all looked like the Russians that I've seen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It uses the standard fixed box mag, I want to convert it to AK mags. I already have a all matching early SKS, this one is mismatched and is just a truck/project gun. Nothing against the AK, but I have a little softer spot for SKS. The after market mags for SKS are usually hit and miss (from my experience) and at upwards of twenty bucks a pop, not really worth the time to mess with them.
 

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Converting to AK mags is a pretty big job requiring serious machining if you want to do it right. You pretty much have to reengineer the feeding system. Also, feeding isn't perfect due to the extremely crude feeding setup of the SKS.

That said, I myself have wanted to try it. If you're game to basically redesign a gun, go for it!
 

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Yeah you need to install a feed ramp of some sort I would think. My "USA"Mag which is basically an AK magazine with the metal adapter sleeve spot welded to it, won't feed reliably at all. The standard SKS magazine sorta angles the rounds right toward the chamber, and they just don't jump out of the AK mags at the right angle every time, I think because the follower isn't angled correctly for it.

Haven't used an SKS-D or M or whichever one the paratrooper barreled, AK mag adapted rifles are, so I don't know if they did some redesigning or what with those.

*edit

Forgot to mention earlier that I did a poor man's version of the Firesights. Little Testors model paint(red, radiation green, orange whatever you like) on the post brightens it up nearly as good as the fiber optic replacement. You could tell the difference on a really sunny day. I dunno if it helps my shots any, but it makes it easier to see the front sight lookin under my scope mount.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I was thinking i'm gonna have to make a feed ramp. Once I get it going and figure out the bugs, I think it will make a good pattern for other guns.
 

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There's no space for a feedramp. Closest thing you could do is actually... gasp... smooth out the lower rear edge of the chamber. Mine had a thing for catching on the case mouth. But if you grind/smooth do it EVER SO LITTLE and be aware of the internal specs of the case so you don't risk a blowout, which would be BAD BAD BAD, like "throw out your rifle" bad.

The AK mag version requires that the receiver be machined out to accept the wider mags. The bolt must also be shaved so that it can slide through the AK mag. The original bolt has grooves for the feedlips of the mags. Notice how you can't remove a mag without the bolt being pulled back.

My big bummer would be the fact that if I did an AK mag conversion, I'd want to keep the original furniture. But in order to be legal with AK mags, you'd need to use a US stock for parts compliance.
 

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Why not install a fixed 20 rd mag and leave it at that? :cool:
 

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Theres a true Chi-com 20 rounder with the star on it on gunbroker, but they want $48 bucks for it! So-so condition too...:hmmm:
 

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The 20 rounder has no tactical advantage apart from the first 20 rounds because it takes the same amount of time to load each round whether you load them in 10 or 20, unlike the detachable mags where a large or small mag takes just as long to load. Plus, the Chi-com fixed mags have reliability problems.

My preference is the original fixed 10 rounder. If you must use hi-cap or if you want to use a full length scope with shell deflector, find a detachable mag that works and be prepared to take a while finding the right one, and maybe even tinker with it to improve reliability. You'll spend less money and be ahead on your US parts count.
 

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G3,you are right onthat mag being unreliable,some are some aren't,some after market ones are good,but like you said,be prepared to kiss a few frogs before you get a winner.
 

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That's why I recommend the detachables over the inflated fixed one, because they cost less and are more open to modification. Also that design of fixed mag doesn't seem to work so well for such high capacity columns, whereas the banana mag spring and follower system were made for 20, 30, and 40 round capacities.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
After thinking about it, I belive I'll save the mag conversion for a shooter grade yugo. I won't be gaining any real advantage unless it was scoped. The fixed ten round mag makes prone firing easy unlike my twenty or thirty round mags which make it a real pain. I've also removed the ventilated steel hanguard and replaced it with the zytel one that came with the folding stock. The steel one looks better but also gets hot after alot of shooting. It was stated that I should just buy an AK, but that would take the fun out of it and I'm just a better shot with an SKS. (don't know why, I just am) I'm still gonna try the william's firesights.
 

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It's tough to say which design is inherently more accurate, but the reason many SKSs are more accurate is that they're machined that way. The tolerances are closer and the construction more rigid. All but a few Chi Com Commercial SKSs have milled receivers. Semi-auto only rifles were designed more for single aimed shots, so naturally greater attention will be given to accuracy with them.

Since commercial AKs are semi-auto only and designed for folks whose government doesn't buy the ammo they burn, and who use their rifles for hunting and competition, they are generally made with more attention to precision. They are also made on industrial machinery instead of sub-******* third world sweatshops.
 
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