Wednesday, May 18, 2011

500 yard AK47 Shot?

Just got this from Gabe Suarez’s newsletter.
I’m posting this for those that think you can’t hit anything with an AK past 100 yards. Read up:

From the Newsletter:
“New 5.45×39 12.5″ Barrel – $200
Texas Weapons Systems Top Cover - $140
ACOG TA33 – $1100
Hornady V-max ammo - $34.00
Hitting an IPSC Steel at 500 yards with an AK-74 –

I drove out to the range in Kingman, AZ and set up the IPSC steel targets for the upcoming sniper class and drove away to 100 yards. I climbed up on the hitch and used my range trailer as a shooting platform. Magazine monopod on a sand bag. 100 yards…five shots five hits.
Good enough.
Drove to 200 yards and repeated.
Drove to 300 yards and repeated.
Drove to 400 yards and reperated. Thought what the hell….drove to 500 yards and repeated.
It took a few shots to figure out how to use the ACOG 5.56 reticle…not having shot this 12.5″ barreled AK at such distances before. Once I got it…the bottom reticle of the TA33 on the target, I got five hits for five shots. No problem. I thought 600 yards would be pushing it, so I put the rifle down and hit my 400 snatch kettlebell drill (with a 24kg bell) before driving to the hotel for a cold beer.”

Just like any other weapon, with a properly built weapon relatively long range shots with an AK47 are entirely possible. Keep this in mind before spending thousands on a rifle that, while maybe a bit more accurate, will never have the reliability and toughness of an AK.
  Join the forum discussion on this post


RR said...


Yes, the AK-74 firing 5.45x39 ammo is good at 500 yds. The AK-47 however, shooting 7.62x39, DOES NOT have comparable range.

Anonymous said...

Very nice! But many of us are unable/unwilling to go through the hoops to get an NFA weapon. a 12.5 inch barrel qualifies as such. Still, fascinating testimony.

RR said...

Disciple of Night,

What so fascinating about the testimony. This is expected performance from a AK-74. It would be fascinating from an AK-47.

You could always get the gun at the standard barrel length of 16.5 inches.

edward said...

I have a Romanian AK74 with a Kobra reflex sight. This weapon is as accurate as any of my Ar's. It consistently shoots 2MOA or less at 300 meters. (the farthest I can shoot around here)
My high end Bulgarian AK 47 in 7.62x39 with a milled receiver will shoot 5 moa on its best day. The AK 47 is at best a 200 yd weapon, but the AK74 is easily a 500 yd weapon.
The 47 is better at punching into the interior of vehicles in my experience. The 74 is a better antipersonnel round.

russell1200 said...

I was under the impression that with the AK-74 it was always an ammunition issue. The ammunition was supposedly highly unstable in flight. This made for some very impressive jell-block pictures, but tended to make accuracy a bit of an issue.

Don Williams said...

1) Assuming an AK47 groups 4 MOA, that would give a group of 20 inches at 500 yards.

2) If you sighted it at 25 yds (3 inches high at 100-150 yds) then it would drop about 7 1/2 to 8 feet at 500 yards. Versus about 3 1/2 feet at 400 yards. If you had an accurate range (laser rangefinder, pacing off distance,etc) then you might be able to adjust for the drop.

3) At 500 yards, you would have a 123 gr bullet moving around 1200 fps -- not bad. Around 9mm territory. Definitely useable to stop a human wave attack.


Don Williams said...

PS The AK47's sights are adjustable in 100 meter increments out to 800 meters. Has anyone tried using them at 400 and 500 meters to see if they drop the bullet accurately onto target?

Anonymous said...

Look up Yugo M67 7.62x39 ammunition. This is real AK ammo in annealed brass cases and the infamous 'poison bullet' that has the large air pocket in the tip. This bullet can tumble in gelatin after only 1.5". The M67 load is of consistent quality and therefore more accurate. I would much rather be hit with either the usual .223 or 7.62x39 FMJ than this round. Do the research on the 8M3 bullet as well as it fragments well after 3". One can have a low cost defensive round, closer in effectiveness to a soft point. Either bullet would stop the fight sooner and with less rounds expended.

The Army studied the effectiveness of the less accurate AK-47 and the M-16 in real battles and found that the poor accuracy of the AK-47 did not prevent the rifle from being just as effective as the M-16. It is a case of bench rest myopia verses real life results. Apparently fighting real battles relies on something other than laser like trajectories. Who wooda thuk?


James family outpost, Iowa. said...

My old shooting buddy in Virginia had an AK, purchased new in 1990, 7.62x39 and perhaps it was no target rifle, but I always thought it was pretty accurate. Our shooting range on his rural property was 60 yards, firing line to target (ideal for the 22's that we mostly shot). With just the iron sights, we could split soda cans right down the middle all day if we took careful aim. Long distance is somewhat cartridge limited.

dc.sunsets said...

"Apparently fighting real battles relies on something other than laser like trajectories. Who wooda thuk?"

Apparently "Anonymous" plans to fight the way the Army fights, i.e. using artillery, air support, crew-served weapons, and full-auto.

The AK is, first and foremost, designed for full auto. Its selector goes from Safe to Full to Semi, unlike the M16 which goes Safe, Semi, Full. In a squad engagement Full auto surely has its place, but for us civilians it's semi only. I guess I don't much give a rat's posterior what the Army does. I'm not a soldier.

Pardon me if that sounds like benchrest myopia.

Abject said...

For around 2K you could have just bought a Kel-Tec RFB with options for differant barrell lenghts and gotten much better results.

A. ruiz said...

Except that the AK is a proven design, tested in the harshest conditions of almost every military conflict in the last 60 years.
VS a new unproven design which is a solution in search of a problem. It's a neat gun, but I wouldn't stake my life on it. Neat range toy. I'd rather have the M1A/M14.

Pitt said...

It just goes to show that the AK can be an effective weapon even outside of "AK range".

Anonymous said...

"I guess I don't much give a rat's posterior what the Army does. I'm not a soldier.

Pardon me if that sounds like benchrest myopia."

I too realize military tactics do not necessarily apply to civilians. (New "Anonymous" speaking here).

But you're missing the whole point. The AK was absolutely intended for situations a civilian could have a multitude of uses for (even if it was created for the military).

On semi-auto it's like a modern day 30-30 repeater... that holds 30 rounds. Made for close to intermediate combat (Yet perfectly suited to take longer shots. Even with the "rainbow trajectory" of the 7.62x39).
You're making an issue of absolutely nothing. So yeah that DOES sound benchrest myopic.

Anonymous said...

I had an old AK-47. I can easy hit a man out at 300m while I'm standing using iron sights.

Anyone can do that. I'm no sniper. Beyond 300m, why? We're civilians, not snipers in war.

I love my ak. I could leave it underwater, in the mud and sand and it still worked every time. I loved that gun. I just wish they made a decent bullpup for it like the Kel Tec RFB.