Among the many new and exciting offerings entering the market in 2012 none look more promising than products targeting the AK-47 and derivatives. The Avtomat Kalashnikova, developed by Mikhail Kalashnikov in 1947 has enjoyed a 65 year service life, which is extraordinary to say the least. Often thought to be inaccurate and cheaply made, the AK-47 remains the most successful battle rifle in history. As its popularity gains momentum in the United States we are seeing increasing signs of Yankee ingenuity stepping in to modernize this venerable rifle. The AK-47 is indeed coming out of the closet and signs of that were everywhere at this year’s Shot Show in Las Vegas.
Kalashnikov owners and aficionados can look forward to new magazines from U.S. Palm.
US Palm has introduced a quadstack polymer magazine, shown on the left, in 30 and 45 round capacities. The new magazine is significantly shorter so it mitigates one of the issues most discussed as a problem, which is firing the AK-47 from a prone position. The new magazines from U.S. Palm will be available in the first quarter of 2012 with a projected MSRP of $99. I’m looking forward to the actual production models. For those of us that are not in the early adopter camp it’s almost certain that both Magpul Industries and Surefire will introduce a competing product in 2012.
U.S. Palm also introduced a break-apart AK – you heard it right – a break-apart! In an SBR configuration, the rifle will fit in a shoe box (albeit a large foot size). The design replaces the old style trunion with a two-part design. With a push of a button and a 60 rotation the operator can breakdown the carbine for transport or storage. Field stripping the carbine version of the rifle is business as usual (BAU).
Development came at the request of an NGO but the company plans to make it available in both SBR and long gun configurations sometime in 2012. It won’t be cheap and the number being discussed is the $2K range. Check out this video shot by Gun Websites
U.S. Palm is certainly one of the most AK centric companies in the industry but if you are a lover of all things Kalasnikov, 2012 will be your year.
For more information on what’s new for the AK, check out my upcoming article due late in March of this year.