[Guest Post] Building a replica SKS carbine

[ This guest post was written by Chuckyzord ]

Down here in the Philippines, the flavor in which firearms come in aren’t very varied unless your pockets run deep. What some folks overseas might take for granted as being commonplace are a downright rarity here. For example, the SKS, or more specifically the Chinese clone Type 56 carbine. While Norinco does sell many of their guns here including AKs, they refuse to import the Type 56 probably for some oddball marketing reason and that leaves me in a tight spot because I absolutely LOVE the SKS. So I decided that if I can’t have one, I’ll try my best in making one or, at the very least, an airsoft replica which I’d be able to use and appreciate just the same.

The obvious problem I ran through first is the fact that no decent replica of the SKS exists commercially and I can’t borrow parts from available guns that might seem close enough a fit. Not having an actual SKS to measure was also a big problem as all measurements had to be scaled from different photographs, with some dimensions tweaked a little (mostly width) to fit the needed internal components. To make matters worse, I was going for a specific build of SKS, one that is period correct and could have been used at the time of the Vietnam war in the 60s. The only airsoft parts I was able to use are the major internal components needed to make it go “bang” which is the electric gearbox, barrel, and feeding mechanism all from an airsoft M14. The externals had to be made almost completely out of scratch save for the couple of real SKS parts, the rear sight and butt plate, which I threw in out of vanity. With limited access to power tools, I had little choice of materials. Most of the components, including the receiver, bolt, sight block and trigger guard, were sculpted out of PVC plastic. Parts that would require more durability, like the magazine cover, top cover, and various pins and latches, were made out of sheet metal or steel pipe. Using a lot of plastic also helped in keeping the weight down to 2.5kg (unloaded), which is good because I intend to run with it in my arms, not have it end up hanging on a wall.

It took longer than I had originally anticipated with on-and-off work taking six months and clocking roughly over a hundred work hours. I think that the end result was well worth the effort and if I had no choice but to go through all of that again just to get my SKS, I’d jump on my workbench and get right at it in a heartbeat.

This article was written by a Guest Author. The views contained in this article reflect that of the author and not necessarily that of The Firearm Blog or TFBTV.


  • Nanban Jim

    Nice work, man! That’s love right there.

  • wlitten512

    That is dedication.

  • Matt Groom

    Wow! Nice work! It looks exactly like a real one, and I’ve owned a few. Personally, I’ve never understood the appeal of the Kalashnikov. I think they suck compared to the SKS.

  • Matt

    Damn dude. I usually really dislike the squared off sks reciever and always counsel someone to go with an ak instead for various reasons including cosmetic. But if I could find an actual sks that looked as good as yours i wouldn’t hesitate to purchase!

    Good craftsmanship, great stock, great finish. I must say, very nice!

  • andy skingsley

    really nice piece of work there, here in the uk such beauties are frowned opon by the powers that be. i myself have been thinking about making my own replica and seeing yours has spurred me on a lot more. great work well done.

  • Frost

    Thats a beauty, brilliant work lad.

  • SKSlover

    as an avid airsoft player / Huge SKS fan, i applaud your work. which brand gearbox did you use? and did you ever consider building one (or more) to sell?

  • Komrad

    very cool
    homemade weapons (sort of) are always cool to hear about

    do you know anything about the illicit (but tolerated) gunshops in the Philippines?

  • Bill Lester

    Congratulations on a fine effort. There aren’t many owners of real firearms who would put this much work into their guns.

  • Keith

    Very cool. Would be interested in reading more posts from the Philippines.

  • It looks real to me, damn fine job! You got some talent there.

  • Gary

    Wouldn’t it have been easier to try and find someone to import an SKS for you? Maybe a US serviceman or someone?

  • WOW WOW WOW, We admire the dedication you put into creating this beauty. The result is well worth the effort you put in it. Just wondering if you are now working on another project? If so, please let us know!