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"In my perfect domestic conditions, with access to parts and tools that I will not have to salvage, fight someone else over, or carry with me - and which will add to my overall pack weight if I do carry them,"

arent you kinda dismissing the fact that the SKS is heavier than the AR in the first place? ar+ some spare pats = SKS with no spare parts.

the average sks is 8.5lbs while the average ar is 7.5lbs or so, that leaves approx an entire pound for spares/ tools at an equivalent weight.

or, more ammo, 7.62x39 is already heavier than 5.56, so either your carrying less rounds, or more weight. the AR's ammo advantage is even greater if you consider that you can carry the rifle+ some ammo and still be the same weight as an SKS with NO AMMO.
First, is the SKS I am talking about heavier than the AR he is talking about? He has already mentioned mounting points and optics. Throw a flashlight and a couple of other googaws on there, and what is the difference in weight?

I agree that it is hard to carry as many rounds, but as far as tools and such, the SKS can still operate with only half its moving parts. There is one in the Hue military museum that no longer even had the trigger group - instead utilizing a sort of notched lever, was missing the gas system entirely, and had a magazine that appeared to have been made from a soup can. In theory, it was still operational when it became an exhibit. . Having spare parts becomes a little less important when you are talking simple machine with loose tolerances versus complex machine with complex interactivity and tight tolerances.

As for tools, every tool you need is either in your buttstock or your ammo pouch with an SKS. Most of the rest literally falls into the duct tape and bailing wire school of field repair if you look at captured examples in Afghanistan.

Addressing the weight of ammo, I guess I could make the same argument that most of the militaries of the world made for a number of years - if you learn to shoot, and your rifle makes big holes, you theoretically don't need as much ammo. We all know that that argument isn't a good one, though. I don't have a good answer here. More ammo is always a good argument.
 

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Your making alot ot statements there in that first paragraph that you are equating to fact, but are actually your oppinion.

"Too many parts, small parts that break" what number of parts is the acceptable number? let me guess, its exactly however many parts make up the SKS...

"Gas system with more problems than there contemporaries"
HUH? Please dont tell me your referring to the age old very first issued models, which had problems that were due more to the powder used than the gas system itself. the ar has proven it self to be a reliable and robust system. also, the AR was a pretty revolutionary design and didnt actually have many comparative contemporaries when it was introduced.

"Adopted for financial reasons"
every thing the military has ever procured has been at least partially dictated by cost....

"have to have special ammo"
Please, tell me what this special ammo is as ive never heard of it. I use pretty much any .223 or 5.56 can find. do i prefer brass sure but that doesnt mean its a requirement.

"but that are surprisingly accurate for semi-autos"
that has in fact been confirmed after decades of use.

"how many wars has your DDM4 survived?"
well, the basic operating design has been around for... idk about 60 years and examples of the m-16 can be found in pretty much every conflict since it was introduced.

"How many nations adopted it or ones exactly like it, specifically, as a main battle rifle?"
MANY nations have adopted AR variants. Now, your usage of the term "battle rifle" is misleading, perhaps purposefully, perhaps not, but neither the AR or the SKS are BATTLE RIFLES. that would be the m-14 and PSL versions of the respective nations, firing full sized not intermediate cartridges.

"How many firefights have you personally fought with it and/or that you have proof someone else did."
lol really? and you per the SKS?

"How many decades has your personal rifle been in use?"
this is about AR vs SKS. the AR variant has been fielded in pretty much every operating condition by many nations, for about 6 decades.

"has the DDM4, or really the AR-15/M-16/M-4 been in continual production for more than 75 years with no major changes to the basic design in the last 60"
The only reason the SKS hasnt been significantly changed in its lifetime is because it was outright replaced by better weapons, ala the AK. THe AR has been continuously updated and has remained a competitive service rifle for nearly 60 years because there hasnt been a better vialbe alterenative, or they would have adopted that.. The only nations, if any, that still field the SKS are few and the only reason they do so is because they cant afford newer, better weapons.

"and those to customize if for certain country's needs/capabilities"
due to its competitive characteristics, Its actually worth upgrading and customizing the AR platform as opposed to adapting a new platform, as many nations did when going from sks to ak.

"or has it pretty much been continually tweaked because of tens of thousands of major end-user complaints from servicemen around the world?""
Sure, no soldier ever complained about the SKS, at least the AR actually improved over time.


Seriously, I get the AK is better than the AR argument, but the SKS is an outdated relic. I love my Mosin Nagant, but also realize its an antiquated design.

You tell, me, If the SKS is so great, why did Russia transition to the AK?
Again, I think you are 1. taking this too seriously, and 2. missing the point.

1. too many parts. "Fewer moving parts" in engineering is an axiom that goes back centuries. Applied to Newtonian physics, each moving part in a system exuals a loss of energy. Applied to manufacturing, it means that the cost of production and maintenance is lower, and less machinery is needed to build the item. Applied to usage, less moving parts means less wear, less breaking points, and smoother operation. Applied artistically, it is the beauty of simplicity. Applied to consumption, fewer parts means greater efficiency.

This is not opinion, it is scientific fact.

How many parts are acceptable? The minimum needed to create a desired action. What is unacceptable? Making a process more complicated than necessary. Care to argue and I would be happy to point you to about six centuries of documents relating to science and engineering.

2. Nope, I am talking about the system currently in use where gas reacts directly against the bolt (more or less). For a target gun this creates a centrally actuated point, and allows the bolt to move forward without any perpendicular force.
This is brilliant, but the short stroke piston is far more reliable and practical in the long run, especially in combat conditions. This, too, is fact. If you care to argue this one, please do it with FN, CZ, HK, Izseshvk, LWRC, Taiwan, Singapore, Sig, Ruger, the Chinese Government, both Koreas and the military procurement departments for 111 other countries, nearly every company making a semi-auto shotgun or rifle on earth that isn't a clone of the AR, and even Armalite and even Eugene Stoner.
Nearly every other rifle Eugene designed was piston-driven because HE BELIEVED IT WAS BETTER.
If you want someone to back your case at a military or manufacturing level, I am afraid you are limited to companies that make the AR, and are therefore biased, and Canada and the U.S.. Though the Marine Corps has been trying to dump them since the beginning, and the Army has been trying to dump them for most of the last 20 years, and was scheduled to choose the replacement this year before Covid hit.
If we are really being fair, the long-stroke is the most reliable, but it can prove unwieldy and inaccurate due to the amount of mass shifting.
Now, going back to argument 1. and simplicity, a strong argument could be made for a rotating chamber or barrel system utilizing recoil. Since neither of the guns in this argument do that, we are limited to short stroke versus direct impingement.
Short stroke is the reigning world champion. It is used by the most countries, and has won the most wars. Fact, not opinion.

3. Yup. The difference is in who benefits. Was the gun chosen because it was acceptably reliable, cheap and easy to maintain? Nope, the AR was actually more expensive than some of its competitors during trials. Was it better for the price than its nearest competitor? Better than the FN? Sure this part is opinion, but the general world consensus is that the FN is better than the AR.
The AR was chosen to increase the stock portfolio of a bunch of congressmen and generals. This is fact, and numerous books exist regarding this. A gun that was made simple, cheap, easy to manufacture and easy to operate and work on by conscripts, versus one chosen entirely based on personal finances rather than the end users.

4. By special ammo, I mean that if you open your handy user's manual for the average AR, it often specifically tells you that steel-cased should never be used. Then it gives you the optimum bullet weight for the gun. Often, in small print next to the claims of a gun's amazing accuracy potential they note that this is basically only achievable with a specific type and brand of ammo.
Here's the thing, the AR was originally designed around a very specific load (M-16: A Bureaucratic Horror Story).
The SKS was designed to be able to take any loading of any ammo by any of the satellite countries, had a bulked-up ejector specifically to handle steel cased, had a gas system built around dirty or corrosive ammo, and was even tested with black powder loads for nearly 2000 rounds without a stoppage.
Now, since numerous tests show that ARs get finnicky with steel-cased, or even certain brands of ammo (Remington, Pmc, Blazer, etc., etc. judging by Google's recommendations) That is basically what I am talking about. Moreover, has anyone tested an AR with BP? Ever? What about corrosive powder? If you end up having to roll your own in the apocalypse, these powders are much easier to make yourself, but would they even work in the gun? I don't know. It is hard to argue AR "reliability" under these conditions if those conditions have never even been tested.

Don't take my word for it, though. Lucky Gunner did a pretty good experiment: Brass vs. Steel Cased Ammo - An Epic Torture Test . If you don't want to read it, there were ZERO malfunctions with Federal, 27 with steel case, with an average stoppage of around 1 in every 889 rounds for steel-cased. That may not sound like much, but this was with guns that started out as clean and well-maintained - not ones that had been in the field for months. Brown Bear was so dirty it actually caused the rifle to cease functioning reliably.
What about accuracy? After just four rounds with steel cased, the accuracy jumped from under 4 MOA to more than six. After 10 rounds, the rifles were shooting 14-inch groups.
165387

Wow. I'm glad I read this article. This means that using cheap steel-cased wolf, and shooting several hundred rounds, my SKS was actually more accurate than an AR shooting steel-cased wolf after just six rounds.

Moral of the story: the gun needs special ammo for many of the arguments about reliability and accuracy to mean anything. Scientific fact, not opinion.


5. Yup. Good target guns, and especially good in their field.

6. No. None. You're talking a military gun, not a civilian one. We don't want Democrats to equate the two, we shouldn't either. The DDM has never fought in a war. The "operating system" has been around for 60 years. In that time it has won two wars and been on the losing side of 19. Oddly enough...you wanna guess what the winners of those wars were carrying? SKSs and AKs. Again, fact. Look up nations that adopted the M-16/C7/M4 series, look at the wars they fought, and then check that against who won. Then do the same for the SKS. I admit the SKS, thanks to the various wars after Soviet Collapse, makes the math complicated as the wins sometimes wash out the losses, but still, the track record is good.

7. No, not misleading. "Main Battle Rifle" is the term used for a nation's primary infantry rifle, and has been since the late 18th Century. The only two nations that "ADOPTED" AR rifles were Us and Canada. Everyone else had it foisted upon them as part of a trade deal or treaty. Seriously, look it up. Then, again, look at what those countries are carrying now, and why. 104 countries have M-16 rifles or variants in inventory. That sounds good, right? Well, 40 of those have them because they were captured in one way or another. The rifle has a pretty poor track record of ending up on the winning side, historically. Another 23 only uses them for REMF types and specific MOSs. Every one of the rest have either transitioned to something different, or are in the process of doing so - barring two, Us and Canada, and we were scheduled to begin transition this year. When did most of these countries dump their M-16s? Again, there are numerous articles out there, but the answer was pretty much immediately. In more than half the cases the weapon system was dropped as a primary arm the second the government had the budget to get rid of it. For most of the rest of the ones that got theirs as part of treaties or trade deals, they dropped the system the moment WE stopped sending them free parts and armorers.

The SKS was the Soviet Union's primary battle rifle from 1949 to 1955 ( When the SKS Faced the M14 | The Armory Life). It therefore was, briefly, the main battle rifle of the Soviet Union. It is still being manufactured, and still being issued to troops in China, North Korea, Serbia and a whole bunch of African boondoggles, though in the case of Serbia, these new rifles are mostly issued to guards, military police, and the equivalent of a Home Guard. While it is no longer the main battle rifle anywhere, it looks like there will be no attempts to get rid of it totally any time soon. If nothing else, we will see it in parades the way we still see M-14s and Garands today (but probably not M-16s or M4s).

8. Proof that someone else did, yes. The SKS fought in the Baltic, Ukraine, on all sides of the Bosnian/Serb/Croat/Slovene conflicts, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Korea, the East German uprising, the Hungarian Revolution, the invasion of Czechoslovakia, Angola, Afghanistan, Iran Iraq, Qatar, the Sino-Indian War, the Sino-Soviet Conflict, the Sino-Viet War, the Serbo-Bulgarian War, Cape Verde, The Cuban Revolution, The Cuban/Panama, Cuban/Dominican, and Cuban/Venezuelan wars, Algeria during the Sand Wars, The Congo, Guinea Independence, Yemenite War, Bolivian War, The Yom Kippur War, the Ethiopian war of Independence, and that's just to name SOME of the wars. Lord knows how many battles just these mean. The fact that so many SKS rifles from these wars are either still in service, still in storage, or in American collections is all the proof you need that this is not my opinion.
My opinion is that for this reason, I can assume my SKS would work just as well as its relatives.

Except for maybe a police shootout or a gang shooting, I doubt there are any civilian ARs in the world that have been in a "battle." That makes it an unknown quantity.

9. An AR variant. Yes, that is my point. We are talking divergent evolution at this point. M-16 to modern AR is the difference between this
165390
and this
165391
.
For some reason, all of you are arguing that that second one is the same as this
165392


I am arguing that a military weapon is good for military use, and you guys are making the Democrats' argument that the AR is basically a military weapon.

10. "THe AR has been continuously updated and has remained a competitive service rifle for nearly 60 years because there hasnt been a better vialbe alterenative, or they would have adopted that.. The only nations, if any, that still field the SKS are few and the only reason they do so is because they cant afford newer, better weapons." Not only is this opinion, but a very rudimentary search of nearly any other country's current military rifle, especially those that once fielded the M-16/M4 series, or multiple requests from the Marine Corps and the Army over the last few decades will show this to be false.

11. Please explain. The M-16/M4 did such a good job of replacing the M14 that the M14 had to be drug out of mothballs and put back on the battlefields of the Middle East. This despite the fact that the M-14 was basically an upgrade of the Garand system.
Looking at U.S. military rifle procurement since Reconstruction, we have a history of choosing badly, justifying the continual use of that item, and then upgrading it at great expense for whatever reason sounds good at the time so that we can squeeze a little more juice out of the decision.
The Soviets didn't do that. They made a bunch of different things, tried them in the field, and kept everything that worked in stock as a just-in-case. Items were upgraded only if the upgrade had significant advantage over a new or different system. The AK was in development simultaneously with the SKS. There is a two year difference between the two. The SKS was meant to be a bridge between the SVT-40 and the AK. This means that one was never meant to fully replace the other. The fact that one is still generally encountered alongside the other, and there has been no break in that whatsoever, means that each gun continues to fill its niche. Of the nations that produced the SKS, only Russia itself has fully dropped the system.

11. If we look at the historical record, yes, there were complaints. The complaints were largely the same as those thrown at the Garand after its adoption. In historical record, the number one complaint during the time the rifle was the main battle rifle of the Russians was that the soldiers wanted their Mosins back. Complaints from other adopters of the platform varied. Some didn't like the cartridge - they made the same complaint about the AK, though. Some of the stories and myths in the written record sound a bit like the complaints made about the M1 Carbine. The thing is Israel, Korea and several others still field the M1 Carbine - another design that remains relatively unchanged. I think that is the point. If complaints are considered unfounded, or unimportant, the platform doesn't need to change. It can soldier on.

11-ish?. The AK isn't part of the discussion. In my mind the question is, given a choice between two, do you want a weapon of war that millions of people - including global militaries - consider still viable, or a watered down copy of one?
As for why Russia transitioned, that was the plan from the beginning. There is no mystery there. The fact that it took them decades after the planned timeline to drop the platform means that their transitional model worked better than expected. That they exported it to their satellites, and those countries were using it as a primary weapon as late as the Grunge era. Those countries exported it to nations like Mali, who still use it as their standard rifle. The fact that the platform has been in continuous production and use, unchanged, since the end of WWII should tell you that while Russia transitioned, the countries in its sphere of influence have seen no need to fully transition.

You like what you like. As you can see I have produced examples, research, and studies for my side. I just want a "the AR is better" with some sort of credible, historical, and non-opinion-based source.

I chose "battle proven military weapon that almost every country that has adopted it still uses." It seems like everyone else chose "never-been-in-a-battle civilian copy of a rifle that nearly every nation that has ever been issued it dropped as soon as humanly possible."

I understand my choice is my opinion, and that the choice I made is for an archaic weapon, but at least I can provide sources and context. This "newer is better" argument or this "The AR is just as good as an actual military rifle" is the sort of stuff we make fun of Liberals for saying.
 

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First, is the SKS I am talking about heavier than the AR he is talking about? He has already mentioned mounting points and optics. Throw a flashlight and a couple of other googaws on there, and what is the difference in weight?

I agree that it is hard to carry as many rounds, but as far as tools and such, the SKS can still operate with only half its moving parts. There is one in the Hue military museum that no longer even had the trigger group - instead utilizing a sort of notched lever, was missing the gas system entirely, and had a magazine that appeared to have been made from a soup can. In theory, it was still operational when it became an exhibit. . Having spare parts becomes a little less important when you are talking simple machine with loose tolerances versus complex machine with complex interactivity and tight tolerances.

As for tools, every tool you need is either in your buttstock or your ammo pouch with an SKS. Most of the rest literally falls into the duct tape and bailing wire school of field repair if you look at captured examples in Afghanistan.

Addressing the weight of ammo, I guess I could make the same argument that most of the militaries of the world made for a number of years - if you learn to shoot, and your rifle makes big holes, you theoretically don't need as much ammo. We all know that that argument isn't a good one, though. I don't have a good answer here. More ammo is always a good argument.
I think that we should keep this to basic rifle setups, not each individuals set up, plus anyone can also buy aftermarket stocks for an sks and add all the same crap to it as you can an AR-15. so that comes down to how much weight the individual is willing to add vs the added capability, thats not really rifle dependent, moreso user dependent.
 

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Again, I think you are 1. taking this too seriously, and 2. missing the point.

1. too many parts. "Fewer moving parts" in engineering is an axiom that goes back centuries. Applied to Newtonian physics, each moving part in a system exuals a loss of energy. Applied to manufacturing, it means that the cost of production and maintenance is lower, and less machinery is needed to build the item. Applied to usage, less moving parts means less wear, less breaking points, and smoother operation. Applied artistically, it is the beauty of simplicity. Applied to consumption, fewer parts means greater efficiency.

This is not opinion, it is scientific fact.

How many parts are acceptable? The minimum needed to create a desired action. What is unacceptable? Making a process more complicated than necessary. Care to argue and I would be happy to point you to about six centuries of documents relating to science and engineering.

2. Nope, I am talking about the system currently in use where gas reacts directly against the bolt (more or less). For a target gun this creates a centrally actuated point, and allows the bolt to move forward without any perpendicular force.
This is brilliant, but the short stroke piston is far more reliable and practical in the long run, especially in combat conditions. This, too, is fact. If you care to argue this one, please do it with FN, CZ, HK, Izseshvk, LWRC, Taiwan, Singapore, Sig, Ruger, the Chinese Government, both Koreas and the military procurement departments for 111 other countries, nearly every company making a semi-auto shotgun or rifle on earth that isn't a clone of the AR, and even Armalite and even Eugene Stoner.
Nearly every other rifle Eugene designed was piston-driven because HE BELIEVED IT WAS BETTER.
If you want someone to back your case at a military or manufacturing level, I am afraid you are limited to companies that make the AR, and are therefore biased, and Canada and the U.S.. Though the Marine Corps has been trying to dump them since the beginning, and the Army has been trying to dump them for most of the last 20 years, and was scheduled to choose the replacement this year before Covid hit.
If we are really being fair, the long-stroke is the most reliable, but it can prove unwieldy and inaccurate due to the amount of mass shifting.
Now, going back to argument 1. and simplicity, a strong argument could be made for a rotating chamber or barrel system utilizing recoil. Since neither of the guns in this argument do that, we are limited to short stroke versus direct impingement.
Short stroke is the reigning world champion. It is used by the most countries, and has won the most wars. Fact, not opinion.

3. Yup. The difference is in who benefits. Was the gun chosen because it was acceptably reliable, cheap and easy to maintain? Nope, the AR was actually more expensive than some of its competitors during trials. Was it better for the price than its nearest competitor? Better than the FN? Sure this part is opinion, but the general world consensus is that the FN is better than the AR.
The AR was chosen to increase the stock portfolio of a bunch of congressmen and generals. This is fact, and numerous books exist regarding this. A gun that was made simple, cheap, easy to manufacture and easy to operate and work on by conscripts, versus one chosen entirely based on personal finances rather than the end users.

4. By special ammo, I mean that if you open your handy user's manual for the average AR, it often specifically tells you that steel-cased should never be used. Then it gives you the optimum bullet weight for the gun. Often, in small print next to the claims of a gun's amazing accuracy potential they note that this is basically only achievable with a specific type and brand of ammo.
Here's the thing, the AR was originally designed around a very specific load (M-16: A Bureaucratic Horror Story).
The SKS was designed to be able to take any loading of any ammo by any of the satellite countries, had a bulked-up ejector specifically to handle steel cased, had a gas system built around dirty or corrosive ammo, and was even tested with black powder loads for nearly 2000 rounds without a stoppage.
Now, since numerous tests show that ARs get finnicky with steel-cased, or even certain brands of ammo (Remington, Pmc, Blazer, etc., etc. judging by Google's recommendations) That is basically what I am talking about. Moreover, has anyone tested an AR with BP? Ever? What about corrosive powder? If you end up having to roll your own in the apocalypse, these powders are much easier to make yourself, but would they even work in the gun? I don't know. It is hard to argue AR "reliability" under these conditions if those conditions have never even been tested.

Don't take my word for it, though. Lucky Gunner did a pretty good experiment: Brass vs. Steel Cased Ammo - An Epic Torture Test . If you don't want to read it, there were ZERO malfunctions with Federal, 27 with steel case, with an average stoppage of around 1 in every 889 rounds for steel-cased. That may not sound like much, but this was with guns that started out as clean and well-maintained - not ones that had been in the field for months. Brown Bear was so dirty it actually caused the rifle to cease functioning reliably.
What about accuracy? After just four rounds with steel cased, the accuracy jumped from under 4 MOA to more than six. After 10 rounds, the rifles were shooting 14-inch groups.
View attachment 165387
Wow. I'm glad I read this article. This means that using cheap steel-cased wolf, and shooting several hundred rounds, my SKS was actually more accurate than an AR shooting steel-cased wolf after just six rounds.

Moral of the story: the gun needs special ammo for many of the arguments about reliability and accuracy to mean anything. Scientific fact, not opinion.


5. Yup. Good target guns, and especially good in their field.

6. No. None. You're talking a military gun, not a civilian one. We don't want Democrats to equate the two, we shouldn't either. The DDM has never fought in a war. The "operating system" has been around for 60 years. In that time it has won two wars and been on the losing side of 19. Oddly enough...you wanna guess what the winners of those wars were carrying? SKSs and AKs. Again, fact. Look up nations that adopted the M-16/C7/M4 series, look at the wars they fought, and then check that against who won. Then do the same for the SKS. I admit the SKS, thanks to the various wars after Soviet Collapse, makes the math complicated as the wins sometimes wash out the losses, but still, the track record is good.

7. No, not misleading. "Main Battle Rifle" is the term used for a nation's primary infantry rifle, and has been since the late 18th Century. The only two nations that "ADOPTED" AR rifles were Us and Canada. Everyone else had it foisted upon them as part of a trade deal or treaty. Seriously, look it up. Then, again, look at what those countries are carrying now, and why. 104 countries have M-16 rifles or variants in inventory. That sounds good, right? Well, 40 of those have them because they were captured in one way or another. The rifle has a pretty poor track record of ending up on the winning side, historically. Another 23 only uses them for REMF types and specific MOSs. Every one of the rest have either transitioned to something different, or are in the process of doing so - barring two, Us and Canada, and we were scheduled to begin transition this year. When did most of these countries dump their M-16s? Again, there are numerous articles out there, but the answer was pretty much immediately. In more than half the cases the weapon system was dropped as a primary arm the second the government had the budget to get rid of it. For most of the rest of the ones that got theirs as part of treaties or trade deals, they dropped the system the moment WE stopped sending them free parts and armorers.

The SKS was the Soviet Union's primary battle rifle from 1949 to 1955 ( When the SKS Faced the M14 | The Armory Life). It therefore was, briefly, the main battle rifle of the Soviet Union. It is still being manufactured, and still being issued to troops in China, North Korea, Serbia and a whole bunch of African boondoggles, though in the case of Serbia, these new rifles are mostly issued to guards, military police, and the equivalent of a Home Guard. While it is no longer the main battle rifle anywhere, it looks like there will be no attempts to get rid of it totally any time soon. If nothing else, we will see it in parades the way we still see M-14s and Garands today (but probably not M-16s or M4s).

8. Proof that someone else did, yes. The SKS fought in the Baltic, Ukraine, on all sides of the Bosnian/Serb/Croat/Slovene conflicts, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Korea, the East German uprising, the Hungarian Revolution, the invasion of Czechoslovakia, Angola, Afghanistan, Iran Iraq, Qatar, the Sino-Indian War, the Sino-Soviet Conflict, the Sino-Viet War, the Serbo-Bulgarian War, Cape Verde, The Cuban Revolution, The Cuban/Panama, Cuban/Dominican, and Cuban/Venezuelan wars, Algeria during the Sand Wars, The Congo, Guinea Independence, Yemenite War, Bolivian War, The Yom Kippur War, the Ethiopian war of Independence, and that's just to name SOME of the wars. Lord knows how many battles just these mean. The fact that so many SKS rifles from these wars are either still in service, still in storage, or in American collections is all the proof you need that this is not my opinion.
My opinion is that for this reason, I can assume my SKS would work just as well as its relatives.

Except for maybe a police shootout or a gang shooting, I doubt there are any civilian ARs in the world that have been in a "battle." That makes it an unknown quantity.

9. An AR variant. Yes, that is my point. We are talking divergent evolution at this point. M-16 to modern AR is the difference between this
View attachment 165390 and this View attachment 165391 .
For some reason, all of you are arguing that that second one is the same as this View attachment 165392

I am arguing that a military weapon is good for military use, and you guys are making the Democrats' argument that the AR is basically a military weapon.

10. "THe AR has been continuously updated and has remained a competitive service rifle for nearly 60 years because there hasnt been a better vialbe alterenative, or they would have adopted that.. The only nations, if any, that still field the SKS are few and the only reason they do so is because they cant afford newer, better weapons." Not only is this opinion, but a very rudimentary search of nearly any other country's current military rifle, especially those that once fielded the M-16/M4 series, or multiple requests from the Marine Corps and the Army over the last few decades will show this to be false.

11. Please explain. The M-16/M4 did such a good job of replacing the M14 that the M14 had to be drug out of mothballs and put back on the battlefields of the Middle East. This despite the fact that the M-14 was basically an upgrade of the Garand system.
Looking at U.S. military rifle procurement since Reconstruction, we have a history of choosing badly, justifying the continual use of that item, and then upgrading it at great expense for whatever reason sounds good at the time so that we can squeeze a little more juice out of the decision.
The Soviets didn't do that. They made a bunch of different things, tried them in the field, and kept everything that worked in stock as a just-in-case. Items were upgraded only if the upgrade had significant advantage over a new or different system. The AK was in development simultaneously with the SKS. There is a two year difference between the two. The SKS was meant to be a bridge between the SVT-40 and the AK. This means that one was never meant to fully replace the other. The fact that one is still generally encountered alongside the other, and there has been no break in that whatsoever, means that each gun continues to fill its niche. Of the nations that produced the SKS, only Russia itself has fully dropped the system.

11. If we look at the historical record, yes, there were complaints. The complaints were largely the same as those thrown at the Garand after its adoption. In historical record, the number one complaint during the time the rifle was the main battle rifle of the Russians was that the soldiers wanted their Mosins back. Complaints from other adopters of the platform varied. Some didn't like the cartridge - they made the same complaint about the AK, though. Some of the stories and myths in the written record sound a bit like the complaints made about the M1 Carbine. The thing is Israel, Korea and several others still field the M1 Carbine - another design that remains relatively unchanged. I think that is the point. If complaints are considered unfounded, or unimportant, the platform doesn't need to change. It can soldier on.

11-ish?. The AK isn't part of the discussion. In my mind the question is, given a choice between two, do you want a weapon of war that millions of people - including global militaries - consider still viable, or a watered down copy of one?
As for why Russia transitioned, that was the plan from the beginning. There is no mystery there. The fact that it took them decades after the planned timeline to drop the platform means that their transitional model worked better than expected. That they exported it to their satellites, and those countries were using it as a primary weapon as late as the Grunge era. Those countries exported it to nations like Mali, who still use it as their standard rifle. The fact that the platform has been in continuous production and use, unchanged, since the end of WWII should tell you that while Russia transitioned, the countries in its sphere of influence have seen no need to fully transition.

You like what you like. As you can see I have produced examples, research, and studies for my side. I just want a "the AR is better" with some sort of credible, historical, and non-opinion-based source.

I chose "battle proven military weapon that almost every country that has adopted it still uses." It seems like everyone else chose "never-been-in-a-battle civilian copy of a rifle that nearly every nation that has ever been issued it dropped as soon as humanly possible."

I understand my choice is my opinion, and that the choice I made is for an archaic weapon, but at least I can provide sources and context. This "newer is better" argument or this "The AR is just as good as an actual military rifle" is the sort of stuff we make fun of Liberals for saying.

like said earlier, your not going to be convinced that your wrong, and neither am i.

we've both made our points and still stand where we do, its futile at this point.

Honestly, if we were on the same side, fighting a a fox hole together, I could care less what gun you had, as long as you know how to use it well.

nuff said.
 

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Given that the majority of LE, military, and citizens use an M4 in a multipurpose role, I'd hardly say the design was half baked (and at present day it's the most common patrol rifle in use, period). It was a relatively revolutionary design, but then again so was the Garand. It was certainly fielded before being properly ops tested, but then again so were many airplanes (the A-26, P-38, and F-111 all come to mind which were sent into the field well before THEIR particular teething problems were worked out. It's just that there are alot more ARs than F-111s so when you have a latent defect the same percentage results in much higher numbers. This numbers game--with a bit of dishonest manipulation-- has been aptly exploited during the WuFlu).

The F-15 was not without its problems, nor was the F-15E which evolved from the F-15. They weren't as severe as the F-111, but the F-111 was a VERY complicated system compared with the other century series fighters of the day (and even the F-4)--using then state of the art terrain following radar, variable geometry, damper filtered flight controls (with analog computers), a capsule for ejection, engines which had spikes and translating cowls (later replaced by the simpler blow in doors ala the 737-200) for shock wave control/airflow augmentation at low speed, etc. Just like the AR some of this was the man-machine interface as well as latent defects in design (the F-111 was fielded without the crews really understanding exactly how the terrain following radar worked and its limitations resulting in the inevitable impacts with terrain). Ya....sometimes you have a revolutionary design which doesn't have many problems (ignoring the P-38 issues, Kelly Johnson had a hit with the phenomenally complex and capable SR-71 but then again during testing it was done in Dreamland where many testing crashes HAVE happened with really no one but the immediate family knowing about them). The Lockheed Electra would have two well-publicized crashes where it inexplicably came apart in mid-air due to a harmonic oscillation between propeller and airframe completely unknown to the designers (the old promo videos of the relatively revolutionary turboprop are worth watching). But once fixed, it was a very speedy, reliable, overpowered, and strong airplane which continues to serve as the P-3. Its death knell in civil service came not from design defects but from pure jets which would be faster than any propeller (707, DC-8).

There are many old guys who won't touch an AR. I get that--once you have a problem with something it ingrains deserved prejudice even when the problem is fixed and not there anymore. It's impossible to remove a taint caused by a bad personal experience (if you went to a restaurant that had bad service or bad food you're unlikely to go back even IF the entire place changes management, staff, and food vendors and becomes the best restaurant in the city). But the problems were largely (and relatively rapidly) fixed as the AR evolved into the M4 of today. Generational changes have resulted in the loss of the stigma AS the rifle/pistol evolved into one of the most reliable platforms on the planet. NO design is without fault or Achilles heel. It's a matter of a trade off of capability vs. detriments to design. When it comes to reliability, modern day ARs are simply as if not more reliable than any prior design. I've had more jams in my mini-14s than most of my quality ARs combined. Now there IS some variability between manufacturers and for those who roll their own components and parts--just like if a person homebuilt an airplane (it could be wonderful, it could be a death trap depending on how it was built and what it was built with).

Can a whole bunch of people do stupid things ? Of course. The WuFlu has demonstrated that in spades. We still have masked up people (going through some crazy ritual--mandated or not--thinking it has some marginal benefit which it does not). Whole areas are still 'locked down' with encumbrances to entry and exit. Crazy, inefficient, ineffective TSA-style barriers and procedures are used in daily life in some places still. People who shouldn't vax are getting the shot. There was no meaningful or coherent risk-assessment done; fear tactics and propaganda drove bumper sticker approaches. Rather than understand that the risk of an unmasked, unvaxed person out and about (whether it's you living life or anyone else) is less real personal risk than taking a single road trip from Texas to Utah, this huge paradigm of fear and threat was manufactured. Vax risks are most definitely there (albeit small acute risk from immediate effects, it goes beyond this in that latent risks are wholly unknown). Yet people who are healthy, young, and having zero real risk are taking the jab out of some marketing campaign rather than assessing THEIR best actions given the risk (perhaps with the added issue that for coronas, sometimes a vax can actually hinder your immunodevlopment for the NEXT corona that comes along--which certainly will--and that if you've had exposure and built immunity that the vax risks are wholly unnecessary as well as might hinder how YOUR immune system responds in the future). So yeah, the bandwagon approach CAN be irrational at times and needs to be watched. HOWEVER, the M4 was adopted by those having a choice not from this but from personal experiences of those using the tool once it evolved into a completely reliable platform. It does stuff other platforms don't and can't. People who HAD a choice started using it rather than legacy rifles, and were pleased by THEIR personal experience. Same as for me; I've Garands, an SKS, an AK, and M4s. My go-to PDW is either an M4 platform or a CZ scorpion depending on situation (the scorpion being limited to pistol ballistics which would present a problem in stopping power and longer shots). This is based on personal experience as well as experience of others (directly AND indirectly). While the legacy rifles are nice, they are very limited by weight, adjustability, optics, fit, capacity, maintenance (and maintenance availability), etc. So I have a wholly reliable rifle in the M4 which does things legacy rifles can't. And that's why I choose it.
I see where you are coming from. And you aren't wrong.

But you also aren't arguing about an M4. The argument is "civilian rifle that looks like a military gun" versus "actual, still-being-used military gun." The argument is whether you want a gun that has been tested in the field and found suitable for decades, or one that is a loose copy of one that has to be re-tweaked every time we move to a new pinpoint on a map.

That last part isn't even a joke. Look up some of the articles on what we had to do to get the rifle to run in the Middle East because all of our previous tweaks had been jungle oriented. Look at all the tweaks the Canadians had to do to the C7, to come up with an arctic version, so they could finally phase out Enfield bolt-actions. The most "modern" version they had of their M-16 based rifle was literally inferior to a weapon designed in the 19th Century, in conditions they have to deal with in their own country.

Archaic does not mean obsolete. That one item is arguably better on paper, and reliable on the range, does not mean it would react that way under heavy field use. I think the chart I posted shows that if you were relying on crappy salvaged ammo for the two platforms, there is no argument that the AR is the pickier eater.

To put it simply. I will always choose something that has worked fine for decades over something that has never been tested. Find me any test of any AR (not a military rifle) being used in harsh military or survival conditions, over the course of months and years, without regular maintenance, and you win. There are entire books devoted to what soldiers and partisans went through in the Balkans when the literal apocalypse happened around them. By far the most common weapon in that war was the SKS, and many people preferred it over the other two choices - the Mauser and the AK. This is all documented as well.

There was no supply line. No extra parts. No food that you didn't grow yourself, shoot off of a corpse or fight over from an airdrop. No cleaning supplies. These guys went through SHTF and EOTW every day for nearly a decade. The SKS was the rifle of both choice and necessity there.

The AR is a first world CIVILIAN weapon. No matter how tactical it is, until it is tested in such conditions, there is no way you can know if it is reliable under those conditions.

I don't even understand why anyone is arguing with me. One item works. We know it. We can prove it. There are reams of data, statistics, and historical record. It has done so as recently as the '90s. Others exactly like it - not civilian copies with a slightly different operation - are on battlefields now. The other is one we are doing our best to convince the Democrats ISN'T suitable for military use.

Which is it? It it not a military weapon, or is it? Are we going full Fudd and/or Democrat now and making the "just as good" or "it's pretty much the same thing" argument?

Let's say, for the sake of argument, that the M-16 series rifle IS the same as the AR but the latter is just a purely semi-auto version. We then take what we know, and what has been tested with the full-auto in the real world and transfer it over. When was the last war where our soldiers were in an apocalyptic situation, with no access to cleaning supplies, with fully disrupted supply lines, a lack of available armorers, months of isolation, and using guerilla tactics? That would be the closest scenario to a full SHTF, right? That would probably be Laos or Cambodia. The problem there is that THAT version of the rifle and the current M4 might actually be more different in many ways than the current M4 and a civilian model.

We have a solid, straight line of data from one nearly completely unchanged platform, and the best data we have from the other is based on a loose copy of a model that itself isn't the same model as the nearest version to go through Hell for months or years at a time. We aren't talking about a year's deployment with regular visits to an equipped FOB. We are talking about trying to decide whether your last toothbrush would be better served on your teeth or cleaning your rifle.
 

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I think that we should keep this to basic rifle setups, not each individuals set up, plus anyone can also buy aftermarket stocks for an sks and add all the same crap to it as you can an AR-15. so that comes down to how much weight the individual is willing to add vs the added capability, thats not really rifle dependent, moreso user dependent.
If those are the rules, you guys haven't even been playing by the rules.

I would guess that the "basic" SKS would be the original stock standard Soviet model, and all the more-or-less exact copies of it; no paratrooper models, full-auto versions, grenade launchers, gas cutoofs, carbines, etc.. In that case, all my arguments still stand.

That being the case, we would need to define "basic" for AR:

OPTION 1: The most equal representation to the criteria would be the most archaic and simple version. Therefore it would be only fair to consider the SP-1 as the basic AR.

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This is a 1964 Colt SP1. Arguably, anything beyond this configuration could not be considered "basic." No collapsible stock, no fancy optics, no accessories.

No one would choose this over an SKS as an apocalyptic survival weapon, would they? Is this your survival weapon of choice? Good luck getting parts and ammo that this thing likes by scavenging.

OPTION 2: We define "basic" as the cheapest version.
You guys would choose someone's homebrew on an Anderson or maybe even a 3d-printed lower over a basic SKS for reliability, ruggedness, build quality, and heavy use?

Option 3: We choose what Google considers basic, a S&W M&P Sport II.
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There you go. It comes with one mag, iron sights, a T-6 stock, and that's it. Is this what you choose? Honestly it is the best choice of the lot.

No matter the rubric, Tx's DDM4 is completely out of the running for any serious argument at that point. DD doesn't even make "basic."
 

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I see where you are coming from. And you aren't wrong.

But you also aren't arguing about an M4. The argument is "civilian rifle that looks like a military gun" versus "actual, still-being-used military gun." The argument is whether you want a gun that has been tested in the field and found suitable for decades, or one that is a loose copy of one that has to be re-tweaked every time we move to a new pinpoint on a map.

That last part isn't even a joke. Look up some of the articles on what we had to do to get the rifle to run in the Middle East because all of our previous tweaks had been jungle oriented. Look at all the tweaks the Canadians had to do to the C7, to come up with an arctic version, so they could finally phase out Enfield bolt-actions. The most "modern" version they had of their M-16 based rifle was literally inferior to a weapon designed in the 19th Century, in conditions they have to deal with in their own country.

Archaic does not mean obsolete. That one item is arguably better on paper, and reliable on the range, does not mean it would react that way under heavy field use. I think the chart I posted shows that if you were relying on crappy salvaged ammo for the two platforms, there is no argument that the AR is the pickier eater.

To put it simply. I will always choose something that has worked fine for decades over something that has never been tested. Find me any test of any AR (not a military rifle) being used in harsh military or survival conditions, over the course of months and years, without regular maintenance, and you win. There are entire books devoted to what soldiers and partisans went through in the Balkans when the literal apocalypse happened around them. By far the most common weapon in that war was the SKS, and many people preferred it over the other two choices - the Mauser and the AK. This is all documented as well.

There was no supply line. No extra parts. No food that you didn't grow yourself, shoot off of a corpse or fight over from an airdrop. No cleaning supplies. These guys went through SHTF and EOTW every day for nearly a decade. The SKS was the rifle of both choice and necessity there.

The AR is a first world CIVILIAN weapon. No matter how tactical it is, until it is tested in such conditions, there is no way you can know if it is reliable under those conditions.

I don't even understand why anyone is arguing with me. One item works. We know it. We can prove it. There are reams of data, statistics, and historical record. It has done so as recently as the '90s. Others exactly like it - not civilian copies with a slightly different operation - are on battlefields now. The other is one we are doing our best to convince the Democrats ISN'T suitable for military use.

Which is it? It it not a military weapon, or is it? Are we going full Fudd and/or Democrat now and making the "just as good" or "it's pretty much the same thing" argument?

Let's say, for the sake of argument, that the M-16 series rifle IS the same as the AR but the latter is just a purely semi-auto version. We then take what we know, and what has been tested with the full-auto in the real world and transfer it over. When was the last war where our soldiers were in an apocalyptic situation, with no access to cleaning supplies, with fully disrupted supply lines, a lack of available armorers, months of isolation, and using guerilla tactics? That would be the closest scenario to a full SHTF, right? That would probably be Laos or Cambodia. The problem there is that THAT version of the rifle and the current M4 might actually be more different in many ways than the current M4 and a civilian model.

We have a solid, straight line of data from one nearly completely unchanged platform, and the best data we have from the other is based on a loose copy of a model that itself isn't the same model as the nearest version to go through Hell for months or years at a time. We aren't talking about a year's deployment with regular visits to an equipped FOB. We are talking about trying to decide whether your last toothbrush would be better served on your teeth or cleaning your rifle.
I think we're going around in circles at this point. Tangentially getting to esoterics.

As I said, I own an SKS, an AK, two M1s, and several ARs/M4s (or whatever you want to call them). I've shot them all and fairly extensively. Each has a purpose and I enjoy shooting the M1 with its irons out to 800 yards. Given that the front sight blade is 7 MOA wide, it takes ALOT of concentration for old eyes to get that exactly on target and I can STILL do better with an optic.

The SKS is probably the LAST rifle I'd pick for any apocalyptic/austere/SHTF or whatever situation. It's got the least going for it compared to the other 3.

My guns aren't esoteric--they're real. I know what each can do and the benefits and drawbacks as well as the performance of the cartridge on game (haven taken some form of game or critter with all of them). My DDM4V5 is fitted with an ACOG, a WML, a decent sling, a hand stop, a La Rue grip, BCM handstop, and a Magpul stock. This makes it fit ME very nicely and it's a way comfortable and accurate rifle to shoot. Or carry anywhere. Or run with. It's the easiest to employ effectively out of any of them. While I like the M1, it's heavy and the stock is more of a one size fits all. It's trigger is decent, but has that standard creep to it. It's accurate but VERY hard to mount optics on. I can reload it fairly quickly with the en-block clips, but it also is much easier to swap a 30-round mag out. For my AK, it always goes bang but is not inherently very accurate, the mags are OK but again fumble more than the ARs, it's reliable but not any more so than the DDM4 (even under abused conditions), the stock is wayyyyy awkward and it's not particularly fun to shoot or lug around. The SKS is even MORE blocky; it's saving grace might be the stock angle isn't as bad as the AK.

SO, based on MY tests, it's no real contest.

AR/M4 (or whatever you wanna call it)
M1
AK
SKS

That's MY list and what I'D prefer for just about any task where the ONLY rifle I've got is that one. I DO kinda waffle when it comes to the M1 because I wouldn't feel particularly slighted if THAT was the only gun I had to work with. It IS powerful and way accurate. One helluva battle rifle. But it also is heavy and has other limitations.
 
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There is a reason (several actually) the SKS is no longer used by pretty much every nation out there with the exception of irregular forces here and there.

And Ive seen the abuse/conditions that current modern designed well manufactured/assembled AR15 can withstand first hand.

I've also seen several examples of people with SKS's trying to mod the crap out of their guns to make it more "AR15 like" and just end up with a half azzed build that still doesn't do much for improving the gun.

The only/biggest thing the SKS has going for it is people debate the caliber... but considering you can get a wide variety of calibers (everything from .22LR to 9mm to .50 Beowulf in the AR15 platform that makes that sort of a moot point.


Also the AR15 will give you a much more accurate and better platform to mount optics on as well no matter the caliber you go with.



But it is an issue,

1. if this was a handgun (or any other magazine fed gun) would you rather have three 17 round mags in a Glock 17 for example or would you rather have three 10 round communist mags for the same gun?

if you got the AR15 would you willingly nerf it by only buying 10 round magazines for it?

On the timing of reloads, sure you may be able to swap a magazine in the same time as inserting a stripper clip.. but

That only assumes you are doing completely dry reloads where you are loading a completely empty weapon... if you are in a gunfight what about tactical reloads?

You just fired off several rounds in your AR15 or your SKS but your not sure how many... but you know you have a couple seconds to top off... With an AR15 despite how many rounds you have left in the magazine you can simply and quickly swap it out for a fully topped off one. With an SKS with a bunch of stripper clips this process is not nearly as fast and easy.

Not to mention when you load a stripper clip fed SKS do you have to break the weapon from your shoulder and hold the thing with two hands to get the stripper clip in and press the rounds down or can you reload with one hand while keeping your weapon up and ready to fire with your sights already down range on target and your hand on fire control like you can with an AR15?


-Spare parts...

Im still running the same parts with thousands of rounds through the same AR15's.... Assuming no catastrophic failure (then you are screwed either way with an SKS or an AR15) you will probably be dead before your parts break assuming you had quality parts to begin with from firing so much.

if this was an AK vs AR15 debate I think the choice would be a LOT closer with one or the other having more distinctive advantages over the other but with SKS vs AR15 I think the SKS is simply to much of an antiquated weapon system to compete with an AR15 on paper stats alone. Assuming shooter skill is the same.

just my thoughts.

this pretty much sums up my thoughts as well.

AK vs AR makes more sense as a comparison.
 

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I own a few of each. although I keep a cheap (less than $100. when I bought it) SKS on the boat, I would grab any of my AR s first for a SHTF situation.
the AR platform has evolved intro a reliable and trouble free weapon. and they are so easy to work on if you ever had to and parts will be more available than for a weapon that has been out of production for a long time.
AR 15 v.s. AK would have been closer but about all that would amount to is a Ford v.s. Chevy debate with a gun theme. with the variety of ammo that can be had by just switching upper equalizes the AK's edge on ammo energy.
 

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Again, I think you are 1. taking this too seriously, and 2. missing the point.

1. too many parts. "Fewer moving parts" in engineering is an axiom that goes back centuries. Applied to Newtonian physics, each moving part in a system exuals a loss of energy. Applied to manufacturing, it means that the cost of production and maintenance is lower, and less machinery is needed to build the item. Applied to usage, less moving parts means less wear, less breaking points, and smoother operation. Applied artistically, it is the beauty of simplicity. Applied to consumption, fewer parts means greater efficiency.

This is not opinion, it is scientific fact.

How many parts are acceptable? The minimum needed to create a desired action. What is unacceptable? Making a process more complicated than necessary. Care to argue and I would be happy to point you to about six centuries of documents relating to science and engineering.

2. Nope, I am talking about the system currently in use where gas reacts directly against the bolt (more or less). For a target gun this creates a centrally actuated point, and allows the bolt to move forward without any perpendicular force.
This is brilliant, but the short stroke piston is far more reliable and practical in the long run, especially in combat conditions. This, too, is fact. If you care to argue this one, please do it with FN, CZ, HK, Izseshvk, LWRC, Taiwan, Singapore, Sig, Ruger, the Chinese Government, both Koreas and the military procurement departments for 111 other countries, nearly every company making a semi-auto shotgun or rifle on earth that isn't a clone of the AR, and even Armalite and even Eugene Stoner.
Nearly every other rifle Eugene designed was piston-driven because HE BELIEVED IT WAS BETTER.
If you want someone to back your case at a military or manufacturing level, I am afraid you are limited to companies that make the AR, and are therefore biased, and Canada and the U.S.. Though the Marine Corps has been trying to dump them since the beginning, and the Army has been trying to dump them for most of the last 20 years, and was scheduled to choose the replacement this year before Covid hit.
If we are really being fair, the long-stroke is the most reliable, but it can prove unwieldy and inaccurate due to the amount of mass shifting.
Now, going back to argument 1. and simplicity, a strong argument could be made for a rotating chamber or barrel system utilizing recoil. Since neither of the guns in this argument do that, we are limited to short stroke versus direct impingement.
Short stroke is the reigning world champion. It is used by the most countries, and has won the most wars. Fact, not opinion.

3. Yup. The difference is in who benefits. Was the gun chosen because it was acceptably reliable, cheap and easy to maintain? Nope, the AR was actually more expensive than some of its competitors during trials. Was it better for the price than its nearest competitor? Better than the FN? Sure this part is opinion, but the general world consensus is that the FN is better than the AR.
The AR was chosen to increase the stock portfolio of a bunch of congressmen and generals. This is fact, and numerous books exist regarding this. A gun that was made simple, cheap, easy to manufacture and easy to operate and work on by conscripts, versus one chosen entirely based on personal finances rather than the end users.

4. By special ammo, I mean that if you open your handy user's manual for the average AR, it often specifically tells you that steel-cased should never be used. Then it gives you the optimum bullet weight for the gun. Often, in small print next to the claims of a gun's amazing accuracy potential they note that this is basically only achievable with a specific type and brand of ammo.
Here's the thing, the AR was originally designed around a very specific load (M-16: A Bureaucratic Horror Story).
The SKS was designed to be able to take any loading of any ammo by any of the satellite countries, had a bulked-up ejector specifically to handle steel cased, had a gas system built around dirty or corrosive ammo, and was even tested with black powder loads for nearly 2000 rounds without a stoppage.
Now, since numerous tests show that ARs get finnicky with steel-cased, or even certain brands of ammo (Remington, Pmc, Blazer, etc., etc. judging by Google's recommendations) That is basically what I am talking about. Moreover, has anyone tested an AR with BP? Ever? What about corrosive powder? If you end up having to roll your own in the apocalypse, these powders are much easier to make yourself, but would they even work in the gun? I don't know. It is hard to argue AR "reliability" under these conditions if those conditions have never even been tested.

Don't take my word for it, though. Lucky Gunner did a pretty good experiment: Brass vs. Steel Cased Ammo - An Epic Torture Test . If you don't want to read it, there were ZERO malfunctions with Federal, 27 with steel case, with an average stoppage of around 1 in every 889 rounds for steel-cased. That may not sound like much, but this was with guns that started out as clean and well-maintained - not ones that had been in the field for months. Brown Bear was so dirty it actually caused the rifle to cease functioning reliably.
What about accuracy? After just four rounds with steel cased, the accuracy jumped from under 4 MOA to more than six. After 10 rounds, the rifles were shooting 14-inch groups.
View attachment 165387
Wow. I'm glad I read this article. This means that using cheap steel-cased wolf, and shooting several hundred rounds, my SKS was actually more accurate than an AR shooting steel-cased wolf after just six rounds.

Moral of the story: the gun needs special ammo for many of the arguments about reliability and accuracy to mean anything. Scientific fact, not opinion.


5. Yup. Good target guns, and especially good in their field.

6. No. None. You're talking a military gun, not a civilian one. We don't want Democrats to equate the two, we shouldn't either. The DDM has never fought in a war. The "operating system" has been around for 60 years. In that time it has won two wars and been on the losing side of 19. Oddly enough...you wanna guess what the winners of those wars were carrying? SKSs and AKs. Again, fact. Look up nations that adopted the M-16/C7/M4 series, look at the wars they fought, and then check that against who won. Then do the same for the SKS. I admit the SKS, thanks to the various wars after Soviet Collapse, makes the math complicated as the wins sometimes wash out the losses, but still, the track record is good.

7. No, not misleading. "Main Battle Rifle" is the term used for a nation's primary infantry rifle, and has been since the late 18th Century. The only two nations that "ADOPTED" AR rifles were Us and Canada. Everyone else had it foisted upon them as part of a trade deal or treaty. Seriously, look it up. Then, again, look at what those countries are carrying now, and why. 104 countries have M-16 rifles or variants in inventory. That sounds good, right? Well, 40 of those have them because they were captured in one way or another. The rifle has a pretty poor track record of ending up on the winning side, historically. Another 23 only uses them for REMF types and specific MOSs. Every one of the rest have either transitioned to something different, or are in the process of doing so - barring two, Us and Canada, and we were scheduled to begin transition this year. When did most of these countries dump their M-16s? Again, there are numerous articles out there, but the answer was pretty much immediately. In more than half the cases the weapon system was dropped as a primary arm the second the government had the budget to get rid of it. For most of the rest of the ones that got theirs as part of treaties or trade deals, they dropped the system the moment WE stopped sending them free parts and armorers.

The SKS was the Soviet Union's primary battle rifle from 1949 to 1955 ( When the SKS Faced the M14 | The Armory Life). It therefore was, briefly, the main battle rifle of the Soviet Union. It is still being manufactured, and still being issued to troops in China, North Korea, Serbia and a whole bunch of African boondoggles, though in the case of Serbia, these new rifles are mostly issued to guards, military police, and the equivalent of a Home Guard. While it is no longer the main battle rifle anywhere, it looks like there will be no attempts to get rid of it totally any time soon. If nothing else, we will see it in parades the way we still see M-14s and Garands today (but probably not M-16s or M4s).

8. Proof that someone else did, yes. The SKS fought in the Baltic, Ukraine, on all sides of the Bosnian/Serb/Croat/Slovene conflicts, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Korea, the East German uprising, the Hungarian Revolution, the invasion of Czechoslovakia, Angola, Afghanistan, Iran Iraq, Qatar, the Sino-Indian War, the Sino-Soviet Conflict, the Sino-Viet War, the Serbo-Bulgarian War, Cape Verde, The Cuban Revolution, The Cuban/Panama, Cuban/Dominican, and Cuban/Venezuelan wars, Algeria during the Sand Wars, The Congo, Guinea Independence, Yemenite War, Bolivian War, The Yom Kippur War, the Ethiopian war of Independence, and that's just to name SOME of the wars. Lord knows how many battles just these mean. The fact that so many SKS rifles from these wars are either still in service, still in storage, or in American collections is all the proof you need that this is not my opinion.
My opinion is that for this reason, I can assume my SKS would work just as well as its relatives.

Except for maybe a police shootout or a gang shooting, I doubt there are any civilian ARs in the world that have been in a "battle." That makes it an unknown quantity.

9. An AR variant. Yes, that is my point. We are talking divergent evolution at this point. M-16 to modern AR is the difference between this
View attachment 165390 and this View attachment 165391 .
For some reason, all of you are arguing that that second one is the same as this View attachment 165392

I am arguing that a military weapon is good for military use, and you guys are making the Democrats' argument that the AR is basically a military weapon.

10. "THe AR has been continuously updated and has remained a competitive service rifle for nearly 60 years because there hasnt been a better vialbe alterenative, or they would have adopted that.. The only nations, if any, that still field the SKS are few and the only reason they do so is because they cant afford newer, better weapons." Not only is this opinion, but a very rudimentary search of nearly any other country's current military rifle, especially those that once fielded the M-16/M4 series, or multiple requests from the Marine Corps and the Army over the last few decades will show this to be false.

11. Please explain. The M-16/M4 did such a good job of replacing the M14 that the M14 had to be drug out of mothballs and put back on the battlefields of the Middle East. This despite the fact that the M-14 was basically an upgrade of the Garand system.
Looking at U.S. military rifle procurement since Reconstruction, we have a history of choosing badly, justifying the continual use of that item, and then upgrading it at great expense for whatever reason sounds good at the time so that we can squeeze a little more juice out of the decision.
The Soviets didn't do that. They made a bunch of different things, tried them in the field, and kept everything that worked in stock as a just-in-case. Items were upgraded only if the upgrade had significant advantage over a new or different system. The AK was in development simultaneously with the SKS. There is a two year difference between the two. The SKS was meant to be a bridge between the SVT-40 and the AK. This means that one was never meant to fully replace the other. The fact that one is still generally encountered alongside the other, and there has been no break in that whatsoever, means that each gun continues to fill its niche. Of the nations that produced the SKS, only Russia itself has fully dropped the system.

11. If we look at the historical record, yes, there were complaints. The complaints were largely the same as those thrown at the Garand after its adoption. In historical record, the number one complaint during the time the rifle was the main battle rifle of the Russians was that the soldiers wanted their Mosins back. Complaints from other adopters of the platform varied. Some didn't like the cartridge - they made the same complaint about the AK, though. Some of the stories and myths in the written record sound a bit like the complaints made about the M1 Carbine. The thing is Israel, Korea and several others still field the M1 Carbine - another design that remains relatively unchanged. I think that is the point. If complaints are considered unfounded, or unimportant, the platform doesn't need to change. It can soldier on.

11-ish?. The AK isn't part of the discussion. In my mind the question is, given a choice between two, do you want a weapon of war that millions of people - including global militaries - consider still viable, or a watered down copy of one?
As for why Russia transitioned, that was the plan from the beginning. There is no mystery there. The fact that it took them decades after the planned timeline to drop the platform means that their transitional model worked better than expected. That they exported it to their satellites, and those countries were using it as a primary weapon as late as the Grunge era. Those countries exported it to nations like Mali, who still use it as their standard rifle. The fact that the platform has been in continuous production and use, unchanged, since the end of WWII should tell you that while Russia transitioned, the countries in its sphere of influence have seen no need to fully transition.

You like what you like. As you can see I have produced examples, research, and studies for my side. I just want a "the AR is better" with some sort of credible, historical, and non-opinion-based source.

I chose "battle proven military weapon that almost every country that has adopted it still uses." It seems like everyone else chose "never-been-in-a-battle civilian copy of a rifle that nearly every nation that has ever been issued it dropped as soon as humanly possible."

I understand my choice is my opinion, and that the choice I made is for an archaic weapon, but at least I can provide sources and context. This "newer is better" argument or this "The AR is just as good as an actual military rifle" is the sort of stuff we make fun of Liberals for saying.
In reality, there are also no AK’s, or very few, in civilian hands. They are “AK pattern“ rifles, much in the same vein as the AR not being the same as an M4, but merely similar. To play the chip of politics Versus sound military priority is also to ignore the change of the AK47 to the Ak74. Same type of degradation in caliber that has long been rued by our own military men who long for a 7.62x51+(or larger) cartridge. Even in Russia, both the 7.62 and the 5.45 have adherents, and haters.
Plenty of actual military grade sks are in the civilian market, though in the 80’s the Chinese seized upon their popularity to undertake a cheapening of the gun, one main difference being a pinned in barrel versus a threaded in one. The cheaper guns are again, not actual military issue quality, but in reality “pattern” rifles.
I guess in the long run, the only of the 3 styles where you are likely to find an actual military issue capable rifle is the SKS though.
unless we want to start talking M1 garlands and carbines, or Mausers, or Mosins.
Fun to see how varied opinions and arguments go in this discusssion. There are no right answers.
 

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In reality, there are also no AK’s, or very few, in civilian hands. They are “AK pattern“ rifles, much in the same vein as the AR not being the same as an M4, but merely similar. To play the chip of politics Versus sound military priority is also to ignore the change of the AK47 to the Ak74. Same type of degradation in caliber that has long been rued by our own military men who long for a 7.62x51+(or larger) cartridge. Even in Russia, both the 7.62 and the 5.45 have adherents, and haters.
Plenty of actual military grade sks are in the civilian market, though in the 80’s the Chinese seized upon their popularity to undertake a cheapening of the gun, one main difference being a pinned in barrel versus a threaded in one. The cheaper guns are again, not actual military issue quality, but in reality “pattern” rifles.
I guess in the long run, the only of the 3 styles where you are likely to find an actual military issue capable rifle is the SKS though.
unless we want to start talking M1 garlands and carbines, or Mausers, or Mosins.
Fun to see how varied opinions and arguments go in this discusssion. There are no right answers.
This is it exactly. It is a real military rifle.
 

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I think we're going around in circles at this point. Tangentially getting to esoterics.

As I said, I own an SKS, an AK, two M1s, and several ARs/M4s (or whatever you want to call them). I've shot them all and fairly extensively. Each has a purpose and I enjoy shooting the M1 with its irons out to 800 yards. Given that the front sight blade is 7 MOA wide, it takes ALOT of concentration for old eyes to get that exactly on target and I can STILL do better with an optic.

The SKS is probably the LAST rifle I'd pick for any apocalyptic/austere/SHTF or whatever situation. It's got the least going for it compared to the other 3.

My guns aren't esoteric--they're real. I know what each can do and the benefits and drawbacks as well as the performance of the cartridge on game (haven taken some form of game or critter with all of them). My DDM4V5 is fitted with an ACOG, a WML, a decent sling, a hand stop, a La Rue grip, BCM handstop, and a Magpul stock. This makes it fit ME very nicely and it's a way comfortable and accurate rifle to shoot. Or carry anywhere. Or run with. It's the easiest to employ effectively out of any of them. While I like the M1, it's heavy and the stock is more of a one size fits all. It's trigger is decent, but has that standard creep to it. It's accurate but VERY hard to mount optics on. I can reload it fairly quickly with the en-block clips, but it also is much easier to swap a 30-round mag out. For my AK, it always goes bang but is not inherently very accurate, the mags are OK but again fumble more than the ARs, it's reliable but not any more so than the DDM4 (even under abused conditions), the stock is wayyyyy awkward and it's not particularly fun to shoot or lug around. The SKS is even MORE blocky; it's saving grace might be the stock angle isn't as bad as the AK.

SO, based on MY tests, it's no real contest.

AR/M4 (or whatever you wanna call it)
M1
AK
SKS

That's MY list and what I'D prefer for just about any task where the ONLY rifle I've got is that one. I DO kinda waffle when it comes to the M1 because I wouldn't feel particularly slighted if THAT was the only gun I had to work with. It IS powerful and way accurate. One helluva battle rifle. But it also is heavy and has other limitations.
Again, there are only two on the list for this discussion. One that could be repeatedly used as a club or spear when the ammo is gone, makes really big holes in targets, and has been used in actual battles, and has been on the winning side of more wars than nearly any firearm in history since the Lee-Enfield. And the other system is one that would probably break or bend upon the first blunt force use, the spear costs extra, it makes tiny holes, has never been used in a battle, and it's military equivalent has only been on the winning side in two of the last 30 or so wars it has been involved with.
If we're being technical, one of those was against an enemy largely armed with machetes and poorly-maintained Arisakas and Mosins with far too few semi or full-autos to go around.Those two "wins" being the Phillipines and Indonesia. I guess you can really only say they won those wars because they say they did, since the Muslim terrorists are still active in those countries. As far as that goes, I don't think there has ever been a lasting "victory" in the Philippines since the tribal era.
I think with Idiot Joe's pullout in Afghanistan and Iraq the SKS has now technically been on the winning side in nearly 100 wars.

Would you bet on a football team if they had only ever won two games in 60 years, while their opponent won every single game they played?

You can't say the SKS is the worst choice if it HAS survived a SHTF apocalypse, and soldiered on for nearly a decade within it. It is one of only two semi-automatics in history that could ever possibly make that claim; the other being the AK. Even the rest of that list is pretty short.

Picking the AR over the SKS for SHTF is like picking a Porsche 911 over a Toyota pickup truck in SHTF. It's fine. It's well made, but it isn't as rugged, and you don't see Haji driving through the desert with a tricked-out one that should have died from abuse and neglect decades ago.
 

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Problem with your narrative is you are blaming the gun for political issues. The m16 had plenty of kills, even considering the asinine rules of engagement. Just one more reason that a fair assessment can’t be done in the manner you attempt, political considerations color the actions and results of all conflicts, often more so than the weapons involved. Sad to say, but true.
 

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"In my perfect domestic conditions, with access to parts and tools that I will not have to salvage, fight someone else over, or carry with me - and which will add to my overall pack weight if I do carry them,"

arent you kinda dismissing the fact that the SKS is heavier than the AR in the first place? ar+ some spare pats = SKS with no spare parts.

the average sks is 8.5lbs while the average ar is 7.5lbs or so, that leaves approx an entire pound for spares/ tools at an equivalent weight.

or, more ammo, 7.62x39 is already heavier than 5.56, so either your carrying less rounds, or more weight. the AR's ammo advantage is even greater if you consider that you can carry the rifle+ some ammo and still be the same weight as an SKS with NO AMMO.
I prefer the SKS because for me it is comfortable, a good fit, and easy to maintain. The reliability is such that you don't need a lot of spares. Simonov designed them for maximum reliability with minimum maintenance. (I think if General Simonov and John Garand had had the opportunity to sit down and talk the way General Kalashnikov and Eugene Stone once did, they would have found a lot to talk about.)

As far as the ammo issue goes, Dad had a saying: "A million rounds that don't hit the target aren't worth as much as one that does." Veterans of the Afghan War I have met have complained, angrily, about hitting a hadji at long range (400 yards or more) with a Poodle Shooter and seeing him got down; then next day having the sonofabitch show up at the local coffee shop showing off the band-aid covering his wound and laughing his fool head off. Now, I don't know if my scoped SKS could make a head shot at 400 yards --don't have access to a range that long - but I am mortally certain I could hit a bad guy in the body at that range with it. And unless he was wearing body armor, he surely would not appear at the coffee shop showing off his wound the next day. It's possible he might be the guest of honor at a funeral, especially if I was using softpoint hunting ammo and not FMJ. Yes, you can carry more 5.56 NATO than 7.62 ComBloc. But quantity is not everything. Effectiveness counts for more, at least with me.

Reliability? I have never managed to get an AR to run a full magazine without jamming at least once, no matter how carefully I inserted the magazine. I have never experienced a failure to feed, failure to extract, or a stovepipe with my SKS. I suspect it has something to do with fewer moving parts.

Cleaning? Dead simple with the SKS. A major PITA with the AR. Others in the thread have acidly commented on the finicky nature of the Poodle Shooter. I started mine on Hoppe's No. 9 and gun oil. It ran fine. But it seems to like Gunzilla better. If necessary, I could probably clean it with gasoline and lube it with used motor oil and it would still run.

You folks who like the Jam-A-Matics are welcome to them. However, for the scenario under discussion I will stick with my faithful SKS, because I can trust it.
 

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Problem with your narrative is you are blaming the gun for political issues. The m16 had plenty of kills, even considering the asinine rules of engagement. Just one more reason that a fair assessment can’t be done in the manner you attempt, political considerations color the actions and results of all conflicts, often more so than the weapons involved. Sad to say, but true.
Nah, that isn't the narrative, just a side argument.

I enumerated the narrative. The narrative is choosing a platform tested in an actual SHTF, versus choosing a weapon that makes you a guinea pig who is doing the testing, plus the ease of fixing problems with field expedients, and a few more that I went into way too much detail on (ballistics, the ability to shoot any ammo, failure rates with cheap ammo in the testing I posted, etc.)

If we were going for the political narrative, which I haven't, yet, it would only more greatly support my argument than the arguments of those supporting the aluminum wonder-gun.

The SKS survives under adverse conditions, and has persevered within the context of hybrid, non-linear, guerilla and other non-traditional warfare tactics, as well as long-range and long-term unsupported survival. It works well in the hands of untrained and uneducated fighters. It can be maintained by same. It works well with fighters who do not have access to supply lines in jungle, desert, mountain and arctic conditions. The rifle can be used in all those conditions without modification (again look at the Canadian C7, the current M4, and several of the M-16 modifications through the years, as well as the countries that dropped direct impingement from their Stoner-based systems for the same reason). It was designed to shoot any ammo in its caliber, regardless of quality.

Politically, that one weapon is chosen by the side that seems unwilling to actually win, while the other is utilized by the side determined to win for all the above enumerated reasons, should be a warning in itself.

Besides, political reasons really only factor into those wars where America was directly involved. Remember, I mentioned 30 wars in which this rifle has been used. 28 of those were lost by the side with the "American" rifle. I guess you could maybe make the argument that in those cases the side with virtually any other weapon was just better overall, or more determined, or more numerous. Is that political as well? It would be hard to make that a universally viable argument either way in many of these cases.

On top of that, political reasons might determine why WE left the war before its completion, but does it explain why the people we leave behind with our gear end up either being slaughtered, or at perpetual war with the other side? Nor does it explain why, when these enemies have captured stockpiles of the rifle we are arguing about, they either ditch it or do their best to sell it to some South American drug lord rather than field it themselves. Vietnam, for example, had warehouses full of these rifles in inventory and stockpiles of ammunition when China invaded in 1979. Why, then, did the Viet Army choose to continue to use SKS and AK rifles?

Politically, either we backed a side that could not possibly have won without us, we created a side that wasn't there before our arrival - and the natives therefore had no stake in it, or our training and weaponry was not enough for the side we back to face a determined enemy even when other factors were nearly even.

It would be easy to make any of these arguments. We do have a tendency to try to support, and attempt to grow, relatively small factions that support our cause. Ceteris Paribus the side we chose likely would have faltered with or without our assistance, and our assistance was little more than a political boondoggle costing countless lives, that lengthened this eventual failure. There has certainly been a smack of this in every American conflict since Korea, whether real or imagined.
For the second thought, we do often create a faction. We might find a pro-American side that likes American basketball and American pop, and has maybe a vague idea of "America" as a concept. Then we go in to spread "Democracy" (I know I've posted about the interview I did with a former Cong member who, having no concept of Democracy, had it explained to him as a system where everyone has a vote - whether they really should or not.) From this we create a "faction" based around our ideas, without recognizing how it relates to THEIR ideas, and we are then surprised when many of the people within "our" faction aren't all on the same side as each other or us. We are then REALLY surprised when they drop their guns and either flee from, or join, the enemy.
For the third possibility, you don't just need to look at our abandoned allies, but you could also look at how many countries immediately drop anything we give them the second WE are not providing free upgrades, maintenance and parts. This does not mean our equipment is bad. But any of that equipment that continues to be fielded long after we are out of the picture could certainly be considered the more viable items. The F-16, F-14, many of our obsolete tanks and vehicles, our machine guns, missile systems, etc.; those soldier on long after we are out of the picture. This means that the country sees value in the platform, feels that maintenance is relatively cheap or easy, and/or that the expense of continued maintenance is worth it. It also means that the platform is still capable in a battle in which that country might find themselves involved.

These are all political considerations as to why we do not win these wars, but it doesn't explain everything. It also doesn't explain why, if a country has a million M-16s lying around and half a million AKs and half a million SKSs, and access to ammo for each, why they do not choose what all of you consider the superior weapon.

Even on a one to one basis, the SKS is superior in many ways. 20 paces, turn and fire a single round from either platform in FMJ. Assuming both shooters were just as quick, and both hit their targets. Which side, statistically and medically is more likely to survive that interaction? The one with a .30 cal entry with a big keyhole exit wound, or the one with a .22 caliber hole straight through?

All I am asking of you guys is to support your argument as to why the AR is better beyond, "I think so, and it has been in MY tests." I have put hours of actual data and history into my arguments. There are far more documented successes of all types with the SKS than the AR in every category except the target range.

None of us would ever let someone get away with, "because I think so" in a political argument on this same forum when mountains of data support a different argument.

Would the SKS be my first choice in SHTF? Probably not.

Would I pick it over an AR. Any day.

Think of it this way, the U.S. has bought 8 million M-16 series rifles of all earlier variants, and then production ceased. We bought 500,000 M4 rifles, and while there is a contract for 15,000 more rifles, the military is looking to drop the system altogether this year. Canada has built 200,000 C7 rifles. Including the older DI version of the platform produced in Vietnam, the one produced in China, and clones from other nations, I get a rough estimate of 12 million of this platform that has ever been built or issued militarily. Add to that another 10 million American AR rifles, as estimated by BATFE and FBI statistics. 22 million rifles, with just over half being military weapons. That is 22 million if we were to close our eyes and -golly-gee-willikers-wish that all these weapons were a monolith of design. As of a 1999 estimate, 15 MILLION SKS rifles had been built, with the majority going to military use. "Why, that number is less," you might say. Then realize how many rifles have been pumped out by Zastava and the various Chinese, and North Korean arsenals, non-stop through today.

In five years time Canada will be the last country fielding a CAR-family weapon as a main battle rifle. 36 countries will still be using the SKS as a primary or secondary weapon. Mali has a brand new 10 year contract with China to continue providing them with SKS rifles as their primary weapon. China offered them access to literally any rifle they produce. China, it should be noted, makes knockoffs of everything; FAMAS, M-14, various CAR-15 configurations, AKs, HKs, Galils, FALs, and pretty much any other system you can think of. I wish I could find what the Malian government's reasoning is for continuing to choose that platform over literally anything else.
 

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Your arguments don’t hold water, they are your opinions, nothing more than. That’s ok, you are entitled to them. But they are not fact. Matter of fact I had an SKS out today as well as an AR. The SKS had the stovepipe, not the AR. My AR’s are pretty boring when it comes to reliability, as are my SKS’, typically. The stove pipe was likely a result of the round bouncing off the base of the aimpoint red dot and landing in the bolt path, a freak occurrence.
Of course the Yugo sks has a known issue with that gas valve. And why you think breaking down an AR is complex is beyond me. There is nothing to it. I don’t know of any known issues with AR firing pins sticking and causing the gun to go into a mag dump.
The political aspects have already been covered, without even bringing into the mix the procurement politics.
Nothing wrong with any of the choices, interesting seeing the reasoning behind the choices.
 
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