Dear Preppers and Survialists,
Last week, a few folks left comments that I would like to address.
I make mistakes. They might be because I didn't find the 'right' resource. They also might be because I didn't remember correctly. They could also be that I am in a rush, make a mistake, and forget to correct it or fail to catch it, like writing 5.56X39 when it should have been 5.45X39
Since, Sean M mentioned it, let me explain, a little bit.
The soviet union realized after Vietnam that a smaller bullet offered several advantages to a larger bullet, thanks to these United States' military experience, more ammo, less weight, and ... increased wound potential. Plus, these United States had transitioned to a 5.56mm diameter bullet, so the soviets could not use it as a battlefield substitute.
Supposedly, the soviets had a military/industrial doctrine that required major weapons systems to be able to use salvaged ammunition components, such as bullets. Yeah, the bullet would barely touch the AK-74 rifle's lands, but the soviets practiced 'mass' fire so little need for accuracy.
As Mr. Evilwrench pointed out, "two different rifles have gone by that model number." I have always been under the impression that these United States Air Forces' AR-15 had been semiautomatic only, like its citizen (civilian) counterpart.
So, ... My mistake
Thanks for pointing that out, Mr. Evilwrench
Many folks, o.k five people, pointed out some of the problems with the SKS rifle and the AR-15 series rifle.
First, Foxtrot 2 Charlie wrote about the AR-15's locking lugs breaking off during extreme usage or poor manufacturing quality control. He, I assume, also pointed out the need for the AR-15 to be clean or it will fail to fire.
Anonymous also mentioned that the SKS rifle also needs to be cleaned to prevent a "slam" fire. This is when a semiautomatic rifle fires a round when the bolt rides forward, before pulling the trigger. Besides being dangerous, it is also illegal.
The defective rifle is considered a Class III weapon. These, very expensive, weapons require a $200 tax stamp and some paperwork. If you're interested, you need to do research.
Foxtrot 2 Charlie also pointed out a problem with the SKS rifle, its ammunition. Like all military ammunition, it's made by the lowest bidder ; - )
Almost lastly, Anonymous pointed out a problem with inexpensive telescopic scopes; they aren't made to handle the abuse of a semiautomatic rifles' bolt going back and forth. As Anonymous correctly pointed out, the scope will 'lose' its zero, a very bad thing during a firefight.
The last 'problem' will depend on your threat analysis; it's spare parts.
If you're planning for a short-term event, you and your family aren't going to need spare parts.
You'll be able to order them.
In a medium or long-term event, you're going to need spare parts, as Sean M points out. A medium-term event (two weeks to three months) may require your family to have the easily lost parts for your rifles. In a long-term event, you're going to need many more spare parts.
Needless to say, that's another article in itself ; - )
Folks also mentioned the advantages of both rifles.
Foxtrot 2 Charlie mentioned the AR-15's forward assist. The forward assist will allow a person to 'push' the AR-15's bolt forward "If" it doesn't seat a round.
Now, the SKS rifle, M-14/M1A, Mini-14/Mini-30, and the M1 Garand can also do this, you just need to push forward on the operating rod (the little hook that you pull back to load the rifle)
The SKS rifle also has an advantage; it doesn't use expensive magazines. As Mr. Evilwrench points out, the SKS rifle has a place on the bolt that allows the use of stripper clips
Another advantage of the SKS rifle? It doesn't look like an assault rifle; additionally, as Old 1811 pointed out, the SKS rifle doesn't have a detachable magazine. No detachable magazine, no 'assualt' rifle.
However, ... With a little practice (o.k. a lot of practice) the 10-round stripper clip can reload the SKS rifle as fast as an AR-15, almost ; - )
As you can see from the comments, everyone has a preference. Some like the AR-15 because it has a flatter trajectory and a longer range. Others like the AR-15 because of its detachable magazine.
While others (me!) like the price of the SKS rifle.
All joking aside, ... I have laid out my preference for the SKS rifle in many different blurbs, these last seven years.
The SKS rifle is an inexpensive rifle that doesn't require expensive magazines. It's ready to shoot the way it is, so you family can concentrate of purchasing the other important items needed for your family to survive an event.
There is a difference between the so called carbines, like the AR-15, SKS, AK-47, Mini-14, Mini-30, lever action .30-.30 carbines firing the 5.56, 7.62X39, or .30-.30 cartridges. They do not have the range of the so called 'Battle Rifles,' like the PTR-91, M1A, and M1 Garands firing the larger, 'more capable' 7.62X51 or .30.06 cartridges.
A range and capability that, I believe, most urban and suburban preppers won't need to survive an event. Plus, a carbine is easier to use by slight males, most women, older children, people with handicaps, the elderly, and ...
Another misconception is the belief that any weapon is the 'best' weapon. They aren't because some rifles will be too expensive (SCAR-H/SCAR 17S), too unique (MAS 49), or ... too popular (more about that later)
All equipment will have short comings that must be mitigated by more equipment or training. We can easily see that in cars. A Maserati GranTurismo convertible makes a terrible vehicle for hauling a half ton of fire wood for your home's woodstove while a 15 passenger van is a poor commuter car for a single person.
So, ... Saying something is good for everyone, in every situation, is failing to consider each family's unique needs and financial situation.
Another misconception is thinking that the 'popular' choice is the correct choice. Many years ago, James Dakin made the observation that purchasing the popular item might be a bad choice, take the AR-15 rifle.
A family trying to purchase magazines and ammunition for their rifle, just a few short years ago, would have paid upwards of $50 to $100 per AR-15 magazines. Ammunition in a few short days, sky rocketed to almost unaffordable but for the most wealthy prepper. The same happened to AR-15 rifles. The rifles tripled (o.k. doubled) in price, going from $600 to $1.200 almost overnight.
While the SKS rifle only increased $100 to $200.
The same can be said for holsters. The Blackhawk Sherpa holster was all the rage until its problems were discovered by citizens.
I can go on and on about the problems of purchasing so called popular equipment and supplies by you and your family
Thanks to everyone that commented on the article, Foxtrot 2 Charlie, Mr. Evilwrench, Sean M, Anonymous, and Old 1811.
I would also like to thank everyone that donated to the NRA, JPFO, SAF, and ACLU; instead of paying me for my 'work.'
I would also like to thank everyone that placed a link on the facebook, songbird, or linked to it on their blog.
YouTube: intoweapons - SKS Slamfire: POV Caught on Camera!
YouTube: NeverEnuffAmmo - SKS Rifle "How to Prevent Slam Fire"