Just got an SKS rifle!

I went to a gun show in Seymour (birthplace of John Mellencamp, by the way) and found a great Yugoslavian SKS rifle with a 30-round AK-47 style magazine AND a scope, for $250. I think it was a pretty good deal, with the scope, and the rifle’s in good condition.

Some pictures:

Me with the SKS.

Close up shot of the rifle.

Anyone else have an SKS?

Great rifle. The price with the scope seems great. I don’t have an SKS yet but it is on the list. First I have to finish my AR15 build and get my AK and then it will be an SKS.

Nice firearm…
I have one that I put a very similar scope on and re-mounted the rig in a composite monte carlo stock. It shoots pretty well…
Word of caution: there are some who would point out that you should never have your finger on the trigger unless you are actually ready to fire…just so you know.

Yeah, I was always brought up with the “assume all guns are loaded!” rule, but unfortunately if I know for sure that a gun isn’t loaded (for instance, after taking it apart and putting it back together several times, as I did earlier,) I sometimes disregard it. But I shouldn’t though, because it does encourage good gun safety skills to always follow that rule.

Thanks for the reminder.

Nice. I used to have a Maadi AKM. One of these days I need to get another AKM/AK-47. My friend who is apparently going end up in Iraq had a nice Romanian one. He dug the black stock, but I’d put the plywood on.

I’ve got an SKS, a real Russian one to boot. It’s a fine gun but I’ve always thought that it had accuracy issues. I wouldn’t depend on mine to hit anything smaller than say a case of soda from more than 50 yards away.

Still, nice grab on the rifle, hope you enjoy it.

I love shooting my Russian SKS. Not nearly as accurate as my Garand, of course, but a fun little gun none-the-less. I stocked up on surplus ammo a few years ago, so I’ve got plinking supplies to last out the decade. Mine even came with the original sling and oiler.

I’ve read that the 30-round detachable magazines are prone to failure. I think when I take it out to shoot, I’ll use the original magazine (that also came with it.) But the banana-clip looks cooler!

Stock up on stripper-clipped ammo and the issue magazine will do just fine.

Um, yeah. I would be one of them.

DirkGntly and Airman Doors, point well taken.

silenus, when you say surplus ammo, are you talking about corrosive or non-corrosive rounds? I’ve read that the former can be a problem especially in the Yugoslavian SKSs. If so, do you have a preferred method for cleaning the bore to prevent damage?

I know these rifles are not really known for their accuracy. Still I like their looks, their rounds can be had cheaply, and they have some historical significance as a collector’s item too. Next gun show I go to, I’ll save up some extra cash beforehand for another more accurate rifle for long-distance shooting, maybe something in 30-06.

I don’t necessarily buy into the idea that the SKS is lacking in accuracy. If you start with good quality ammo, you’ll get better results. Most people who own them shoot the absolute cheapest ammo, usually surplus, that they can find. Ammo that is decades old and stored under questionable conditions gives erratic results. What a surprise. If you really want to wring out the carbine’s capabilities, reload for it using bullets that are properly sized for the bore.
Fired from a bench with good quality ammo, an SKS is easily capable of four inch groups (or less) at 100 yards. If the best you can do is to hit a case of soda at 50 yards, then there is either a problem with that particular rifle or operator error.

Argent Towers,

Don’t expect too much out of your scope. Receiver cover mounts like that are notoriously unstable. If the scope isn’t rigidly fixed in place in relation to the barrel, you get wandering zero problems. Unless that particular cover fits so tightly that you need a mallet to get it into place, you should expect just that. There are other mounts available that will give better results, but they involve some modification to the rifle.
If I were you, I’d ditch the scope and the extended magazine and learn to make the rifle perform in its original configuration. The 30 round magazine is rather pointless on a semiauto weapon and gets in the way when trying to shoot from prone or from a bench. Hosing away with the big magazine is mainly a way to turn money into noise. With the cost of ammo being what it is right now, making every shot count is more important than ever.
If the as-issued iron sights don’t please you, there are aperture sights AKA peep sights available from various manufacturers that give a better sight picture and require no permanent modifications.

I didn’t say that was the best I could do. :smiley: I said I wouldn’t depend on it for important accuracy outside that range in say a match or for hunting. I can, and have, done better than that but while I might put two in the 10 ring at 100 yards the next round tends to be a flyer and sometimes man that flyer won’t even crease paper.

Though you’re dead on with the ammo being the cheapest I can scrounge. I bought 1000 rounds for a song a few years ago and that’s mostly what I feed it, I have other more accurate out of the box rifles that I’ll feed the pricey stuff too. I can’t really justify buying match grade 7.62 stuff when I don’t believe that the rifle is worth it.

Oh, and Argent Towers? Never buy corrosive primer ammo to feed into a stamped gun like your Yugo SKS, most of what you’ll find today on the cheap is new enough for that not to be as big of an issue as it was a few years ago when the markets were flooded with old useless ammo from Eastern Bloc countries.

Corrosive ammo can be used in the Yugo SKS. That’s what the Yugoslavians themselves used in it and also in their AK which also lacked chrome lining. The trick is that you have to be disciplined like a Yugoslavian soldier and clean the piece ASAP (immediately is ideal) after a firing session AND you have to use an aqueous cleaning solution followed by lubrication with oil.
That means stripping the rifle, cleaning the bore, cleaning the gas system, and cleaning the bolt assembly. Firing residues contain the corrosive salts from the primer. The aqueous cleaner is important because it is the water component that dissolves the corrosive salts. An ammonia-based houshold cleaner will work just fine. After cleaning, then the components need to be dried, lubed with oil and reassembled. With practice, you get to where all this can be done reasonably quickly.
The Soviet military never switched over to noncorrosive ammo and the US continued using it into the 1950s. The Sacred and Holy Garand itself was used with corrosive ammo through most of its tenure. Corrosive ammo works just fine and won’t hurt your weapon provided you are willing to follow the protocols that its use entails.

Thanks for all the great advice everyone.

I have always preferred regular iron sights to scopes. When I take the rifle out to shoot, I’m going to take the scope off and use the original mag as well, for sure. In fact, I made sure when I bought the rifle that the standard 10 round mag was included too. That extra hardware all looks really cool but you’re right that it really just gets in the way.

BTW, Argent, your new toy is a Yugo M59 variant of the SKS that has had its bayonet removed and the lug/hinge where it attached ground off. Not a rare piece, but the majority of Yugos I’ve been seeing lately are the M59/66 variant with the grenade spigot and flip-up grenade sight/shut off valve. Enjoy your new gun!

Scumpup, I’m inspecting the rifle now. That scope mount is on there damn tight. I mean, it’s practically welded on there. There’s a rail, on top of a half-cylinder piece of steel that fits flush on top of the receiver. It couldn’t possibly be any more secure than that. There’s little space beneath the rail where you can look through to the iron sights if you don’t want to use the scope.

Is the scope mount attached to the receiver or to the receiver cover? IOW, when you field strip the rifle, does the scope mount stay attached to the receiver/barrel assembly or does it come off with the sheet metal cover you remove to take out the bolt assembly, spring, etc. Your photo is dark in that area and I can’t tell from the picture. I just assumed it was a receiver cover mount since those are the most common…due to being cheap and easy to install.

The scope rail is part of the receiver cover. The receiver cover and scope rail are one single piece of metal.