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SKS accuracy

18 Dec 2017
@ 10:43 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

The following is from my emails. I tried to reply but the recipient's gmail account is full so the reply was rejected. Perhaps he will find this reply here. If not, perhaps it will help others.


I was wondering if you have any experience or advice about stabilizing and bedding this setup? I bought one of your kits and am finally going to use it.

I think there is not much to build off of in the plastic stock. The original wood looks better. Would you try to build up some other spot or just go with the rear (tang?) and the first part of the barrel?

I will stabilize the forend, and there is a tiny edge on the stock that a part of the action could be bedded to, right around the front of the trigger group.

thanks if you have any advice, I know its easier to look than to imagine. I think you probably know what I mean and how there is a lot of open space in the sks plastic stocks.


18 Dec 2017
@ 10:59 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: SKS accuracy

Hi ...,

Before we begin, you need to consider the bore dimensions. The bore should be .311" but could be anything from .306 to .316. Although a very rough method, you can use a vernier within the grooves (be careful not to damage the crown) as a means to obtain a very rough idea of the bore diameter.

Secondly, the trigger is a limiting factor. Generally speaking, it is best to hone the trigger to a positive release. There is a long tutorial for this on youtube. Basic alterations will not decrease the weight of the trigger but will make the release smoother. It all depends on how far you want to take it. If you want the trigger lighter, you will need to go further down the rabbit hole.

Thirdly, whether you remove the creep from the trigger or use it as is, you will need to use two hands when shooting this rifle, not the silly crossed arm method the masses are using today. You must hold the forend properly, especially when shooting a rifle with a heavy or heavy + creepy trigger. This is THE key factor- hold it like a man.

As for the bedding, you are correct, tang and start of the barrel. There is also a point just on either side of the cross bolt where you can bed the front of the action (use plasticine to plug the pin holes in the action). But to do this, the compound must be relatively stiff. If using our compound in this area, use some form of chopped carbon or glass fiber- but even chopped polyester will do (pillow inner) mixed with the compound to stop it running away. Apply plenty of grease to the cross bolt to make sure that you do not lock the action in place. Note that bedding this area is not of great importance. If one can merely address the tang and the start of the barrel, it will generally be enough.

It is very hard to guarantee accuracy with these when the bores are sometimes very loose. Other times the bores are full of rust (corrosive primers + no cleaning kills the chrome lining). Or- burrs and or rust at the intersection of the lands and grooves. The SKS is a real box of chocolates. We have both extremes here for research purposes.

The 7.62x39 does not have a great deal of power down range so there is no need to chase sub minute accuracy when the cartridge simply does not have the power to kill at longer ranges. Having said this, I do like to get the best out of each rifle. Most go around 3 MOA with open sights but if you have a rifle with a good tight bore, basic bedding and a workable trigger, you may get down below 2 MOA with open sights or just on MOA with a scope and good ammo. Ammo quality is of course another aspect of this. If you can get down below 2 MOA (2" at 100 yards) then I would consider it a win.

Finally, please do not believe any of the youtube vids regarding ballistics gel and FMJ wounding etc. The people making these vids have no idea what they are seeing and their descriptions are misleading.

OK, hope that helps.

A further note to any forum members shooting these rifles: The SKS was once a dime a dozen, but good bores are getting harder to find. Whether you shoot an SKS or AK, please take time to clean the darned things properly- including the gas system. Do not rely on the chrome lining to overcome the ills of corrosive primers. More info on this can be found in my Accurizing and Maintenance book. I see far too many of the older rifles dying away now, all due to poor maintenance. Too many of us are taking the old guns for granted.


We are a small, family run business, based out of Taranaki, New Zealand, who specialize in cartridge research and testing, and rifle accurizing.