One of the more surprising announcements of SHOT 2015 was that Palmetto State Armory (PSA), one of the top suppliers of affordable ARs and AR parts, would begin producing an AK-pattern rifle.
The South Carolina-based manufacturer and retailer had an all-black Kalashnikov on display next to their usual assortment of firearms and accessories. PSA’s AKs will be fully American-made, and appear to be AKM-spec rifles—that means they’ll be compatible with almost all of the AK accessories available in the US market. They plan on starting with 7.62x39mm and moving on to other calibers later.
The PSA AKs will be built using receivers made from the same supplier for NoDak Spud, a well-known name in the AK building community. The guns will be nitride-coated, inside and out (including the barrels), and built using all-new parts.
PSA plans on bringing the guns to market within the next 90 days at a sub-$700 price point. It’ll be a strong competitor for WASRs, NPAPs, and other affordable Kalashnikovs.
The finish on the gun was impressive, all the parts looked well-made, and the action was smooth—which is about all you can determine about an AK without range time. I’m excited to see a major American manufacturer enter the Kalashnikov market at such a fair price. Make no mistake, 2015 is looking to be a fun year for AK fans.
Note added 1-27-2015: This article originally stated that the model on display at the PSA booth was wearing foreign-made furniture. That was incorrect, and the text has been corrected accordingly.
Images by Matt Korovesis