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The Saiga hunting rifle, the non military variant of the AK-47


Named for the Saiga Antelope, the Saiga series of rifles is based on the AK-47 weapon system originally designed by Mikhail Kalashnikov. The Saiga platform was developed for shooters who wanted the reliability of an AK pattern rifle in a non-military package.Edit

Originally designed in the 1970s, the first rifles were chambered for 5.6x39mm. The project was not a huge success and only about 300 rifles of this design were produced.

The Saiga was reintroduced in the 1990s and was marketed as a rifle capable of hunting medium-sized game. Improvements were made to the initial design from the 1970s which made the rifle capable of handling more powerful cartridges such as the .308 Winchester/7.62x51mm and the more prevalent .223 Remington/5.56x45mm, 5.45x39mm, and 7.62x39mm calibers. These improvements contributed to the modern line of the Saiga rifles being adopted by many different hunters.

The rifle is currently made in the same Izhmash plant as military AKs, and imported into the United States by Russian American Armory.Edit

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