GlockTalk.com
Home Forums Classifieds Blogs Today's Posts Search Social Groups



  
SIGN-UP
Notices

Glock Talk
Welcome To The Glock Talk Forums.

 
  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-18-2009, 14:53   #1
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
AK magazine identification guide.

Have you guys tried getting help to identify the magazine that came with your AK?

This is one subject that comes up and has always fascinated me. And just when I think I have it down pat, someone comes along and shows me a variation I was not aware of, or corrects my information.

Anyway, I am going to take a stab at it to help all of us. Most of these are from my personal collection. If you guys have anything to add or any corrections, please share.

Alright, enough gab. Let's get to business...

Here are 30-round AK magazines from nine different countries. While all look the same, there are differences is the original finish, the stamps along the ribs, construction, followers, bottom retainers, welds, the number of ribs, types of ribs, and the depression lines and how they terminate that help identify the origin. Even within the same country, there will be differences, such as the Russians using factory logos for Ishevsk or Tula or "M" for Molot. Magazines also vary depending on whether they were originally designed for the AK-47 or AKM in the same country.

These are my accepted examples (always subject to change), but there are those that know far more than I do and may be able to point out other things or mistakes. My collection is definitely not all-inclusive. Be sure to click on the individual pictures to see them larger.

The Kalashnikov Klub

Here is a Bulgarian that I unwrapped brand new. Notice the termination of the depression right below where I penciled "BUL". It cuts up at 45 degrees before ending.
The Kalashnikov Klub

Here is a Chinese flat back. Note two ribs on the bottom. Compare these ribs to those of the Yugo mag.
The Kalashnikov Klub
And the telltale give-away.
The Kalashnikov Klub

Egyptian, brand new from Copes Distributing. I have also seen older Egyptian mags stamped "Made In Egypt" too.
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 08-18-2009 at 14:56..
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 14:53   #2
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
East German. East German mags are nicely blued and crisp in the ribs. Also look at the extensive spot welding along the spine and how equidistant the welds are.
The Kalashnikov Klub

Hungarian and its "C2" stamp. Variations include "2" or "20". My Hungarian 20-round mags all have "20" except one is also marked "C2".
The Kalashnikov Klub
The Kalashnikov Klub

Polish and its circle "11" stamp. Also notice how the depression below where I penciled "POL" turns 90 degrees before ending.
The Kalashnikov Klub
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 14:54   #3
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Romanian and a simple "0" with a line. Some just have a "0", some have nothing.
The Kalashnikov Klub
The Kalashnikov Klub
Hungarian. Circle "M" and notice the end of the spine, which is square unlike other magazines that end at a 45 degree angle.
The Kalashnikov Klub
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 02-05-2011 at 16:13..
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 14:54   #4
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Finally, Yugoslavian. Note the two ribs along the bottom, but a full spine. Also, when compared to the Chinese, the lower rib on the Yugo mag nearly touched the bottom plate, while the Chinese is higher.
The Kalashnikov Klub
And of course, the unique follower. Yugo on the left, Russian (and most others) on the right.
The Kalashnikov Klub

Actually, let me add more...

Croatian/Bosnian. Some have what looks like the boyscout symbol
The Kalashnikov Klub

Here are three Russian Izhevsk with the easily identifiable full arrow in the triangle logo below the middle rib.
The Kalashnikov Klub
and an old Russian aluminum "waffle" mag.
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 08-18-2009 at 14:59.. Reason: Spelling...yes, I am a spelling/grammer Nazi
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 14:55   #5
engineer151515
_______________
 
engineer151515's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 20,526


Good info.

Thanks
__________________
"We better get back, cause it'll be dark soon. And they mostly come at night - mostly." - Newt - Aliens
engineer151515 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 15:16   #6
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
You're welcome. Here are better pictures highlighting exactly what I mean by the Chinese magazine not having a spine as compared to the Yugoslavian magazine.
The Kalashnikov Klub
...and another picture of the spine area along with the two ribs at the bottom. Both magazines have only two ribs but note the location. The Chinese ribs also extend further to the front of the magazine, while the Yugo ribs are pretty much confined to the larger, flat area.
The Kalashnikov Klub
I just want to point something out here...there are magazines for sale from some distributors listed as either Chinese or Yugoslavian, but are actually neither and you must ask or read the ad carefully. If you are trying to keep your magazines as original as possible, be on the lookout for "Chugos" which are magazines made by combining Yugo and Chinese parts in an attempt to simply sell magazines.
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 08-18-2009 at 15:17.. Reason: Forgot the link
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 19:18   #7
Serb
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 23
Extremely iinformative and useful post that requires a sticky. Thanks, Carlos!

Please let me add that Hungarian magazines normally have the "02" stamp, which was the country's Warsaw Pact designation number. You'll even find this stamped on almost every part of older M44 Mosin's from Hungary. Some mags also come with a "D" or "M" stamp as well. About half of my 20 round magazines from Hungary lack the "02", but have either a "D" or "M". "Man in the Moon" stamps can be found on some of these as well, but like the "02", this is not consistent.

What has stumped me most often has been distinguishing Romanian from Polish mags. Both have the 90 degree turn (as you indicated), yet often do not have the "11" (Polish) or "0" (Romanian) stamps. Have you been able to identify any other unique traits that can help differentiate these mags?

Thanks again, Carlos. You work is amazing, and much appreciated.

Serb

Last edited by Serb; 08-18-2009 at 19:29..
Serb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 19:38   #8
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Serb View Post
What has stumped me most often has been distinguishing Romanian from Polish mags. Both have the 90 degree turn (as you indicated), yet often do not have the "11" (Polish) or "0" (Romanian) stamps. Have you been able to identify any other unique traits that can help differentiate these mags?

Serb
In fact, I have.

The Romanians have glaring spot welds on the tabs that the Polish mags don't. This is the only way I know of to differentiate between the two.

Romanian
The Kalashnikov Klub
Polish
The Kalashnikov Klub

I just wanted to add this picture from AIM's website that backs up what I said about the Romanian magazines. Notice the spot weld.
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 08-19-2009 at 07:13.. Reason: Added AIM's picture
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 20:44   #9
Aceman
Senior Member
 
Aceman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Tampa
Posts: 6,466
And - do you have any preferences? I personally have been driven mainly by what fits best in any given gun...and other than lack of rust/rattles etc....don't really care as they have all seemed to more or less work - much like the guns themselves! Currently I have some Romanian, some Bulgarian, some Hungarian, some Tapco Intrafuse, some Promags maybe a couple of other nationalities - none of them cause me any trouble, but Promag/Tapco work better in my Romy's mag well.
Aceman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 20:58   #10
Serb
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 23
Once again, Carlos unveils the mystery. Thanks! I never noticed the spot weld differences.

I forgot to add that some of my Romanian mags display a "22" stamp as well as the "0" stamp. One has them both on the spine; others only display one of the two; still others have no stamps at all.

For me, nothing is nicer for 7.62 than an East German mag. The quality of the metal work and blueing, as Carlos pointed out, is exemplary and stands out from the others.

Serb

Last edited by Serb; 08-18-2009 at 21:01..
Serb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 21:29   #11
lilc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 3,482
Very useful and interesting information. Thanks!
lilc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2009, 22:08   #12
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aceman View Post
And - do you have any preferences?
Not really, other than I prefer metal mags for AK-47s and AKMs. I don't like the look of polymer on the older guns, but I do recognize the obvious advantages of polymer over steel. On AK-74s, I prefer polymer over steel however. I do like knowing my AKs have magazines from their original countries.

It's just me and my peculiar tastes.
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 01:06   #13
DJ Niner
Moderator
 
DJ Niner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: North-Central USA
Posts: 17,555
Quote:
Originally Posted by Serb View Post
Extremely iinformative and useful post that requires a sticky. Thanks, Carlos!

(snip)
Added to the Sticky thread titled "Resources/links for AK owners/users..."


More great info, well-presented (as usual). Allow me to add my thanks as well, CarlosC.
DJ Niner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 06:54   #14
mrmedina
NRA Member
 
mrmedina's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Albuquerque,NM
Posts: 2,256
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlosC View Post
Not really, other than I prefer metal mags for AK-47s and AKMs. I don't like the look of polymer on the older guns, but I do recognize the obvious advantages of polymer over steel. On AK-74s, I prefer polymer over steel however. I do like knowing my AKs have magazines from their original countries.

It's just me and my peculiar tastes.
Great minds think alike
__________________

Big Dawg #1406, Sub Club #104
Kalashnikov Klub# 1105, Black Rifle Forum #1105
mrmedina is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 10:37   #15
artert3
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 93
Magazine differences

Hello All,
I am a newer member here, and I would just like to express my great appreciation for Carlos' knowledge, and help with the AK platform. He never tries to belittle you even if he's answered your question to a hundred other's before you. He has responded to my private messages promptly, and with great detail! I think I can speak for most all here that his help has benefited this site, and it's members immensely. Thank You Again Mr. Carlos C.
artert3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 11:40   #16
fnfalman
Chicks Dig It
 
fnfalman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: California & New Mexico, US
Posts: 56,179


Definitely a great thread. Thanks for all the efforts going into research & photos. Some of the NORINCO mags are also easily identifiable via their chrome followers and the obvious bluing finish to the mag body as opposed to military parkerize finish or black painted finish.
__________________
Can you dig it?
fnfalman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 12:30   #17
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Quote:
Originally Posted by fnfalman View Post
Definitely a great thread. Thanks for all the efforts going into research & photos. Some of the NORINCO mags are also easily identifiable via their chrome followers and the obvious bluing finish to the mag body as opposed to military parkerize finish or black painted finish.
You're quite right about the Norincos (actually, Polytechs) with chrome followers, and they are prized. There are other unique Chinese mags too like the ones with a stamped plate at the top.

My original intention was to do a quick post that covers the most common magazines you and I will see, but I see I am going to have to expand this thanks to your inputs and those of the other GT AK enthusiasts.

I am in the process of gathering more photos from other sources and I'll continue updating once I have saved the photos and added the photographers' credits to each.
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 08-19-2009 at 13:28..
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 13:11   #18
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Okay, here's an update and more info to muddy the waters further. fnfalman, here are the mags you spoke of..

Chinese Polytech with the chrome follower
The Kalashnikov Klub

The Kalashnikov Klub

The Kalashnikov Klub

Chinese with the stamped side plate
The Kalashnikov Klub

Here are original Egyptian with "Made In Egypt" stamps on the side plate
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 13:14   #19
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Some more Russian:

Russian slab side
The Kalashnikov Klub

A nice picture of a Russian aluminum waffle
The Kalashnikov Klub

Russian Izshevsk with the "Arrow in Triangle" stamp on the side rib
The Kalashnikov Klub

Russian Izshevsk with the stamp on the spine
The Kalashnikov Klub

Bosnian/Croatian two-rib (unknown original photographer)
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.

Last edited by CarlosC; 08-19-2009 at 13:32..
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-19-2009, 13:27   #20
CarlosC
I love guns!
 
CarlosC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: TX
Posts: 4,215
Bosnian/Croatian Fleur de Lys
The Kalashnikov Klub

Bosnian/Croatian single side rib
The Kalashnikov Klub

Hungarian "Man on the Moon" stamp that Serb talked about
The Kalashnikov Klub

I collected these pics long ago, so I do not know who the original photographers are for these next two, but I am more than willing to give them credit if anyone knows.

A nice East German sample. While this one has been refinished, again notice the crisp stamps and overall workmanship.
The Kalashnikov Klub

and two nice Polish magazines. Notice the absence of obvious welds on the side plates.
The Kalashnikov Klub
__________________
Pittsburgh Steelers fan till the day I die, and then some.
CarlosC is offline   Reply With Quote

 
  
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump




All times are GMT -6. The time now is 22:35.




Homepage
FAQ
Forums
Calendar
Advertise
Gallery
GT Wiki
GT Blogs
Social Groups
Classifieds


Users Currently Online: 1,057
253 Members
804 Guests

Most users ever online: 2,244
Nov 11, 2013 at 16:42