Uncle Sam Need 592,825 7.62x39mm AK Magazines

Expect newly manufactured AK magazines to be in short supply in the near future. The Army is soliciting bids to purchase 592,825 7.62x39mm AK magazines.

The U. S. Army Contracting Command – New Jersey, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ, in support of the U.S. Army Research Development Engineering Command Armament Research Development and Engineering Center (RDECOM-ARDEC) and Several Program Offices, intends to issue a solicitation to all Basic Ordering Agreement (BOA) holders to procure the following:

1. 592,825 (approx) AK Rifle Magazines: 7.62x39mm Caliber, New Production, Steel, 30 Round Capacity

Please note that only contractors that have received previously established Basic Ordering Agreements (BOAs) under W15QKN-12-X-C003 will be issued a solicitation. If you believe you are capable of supplying the abovementioned Non-Standard Weapons (NSW), please respond to the Government’s open and continuous sources sought notice, W15QKN-12-X-C003 and follow the detailed instructions. Responses to the sources sought notice will be assessed to determine the contractor’s capabilities, and if determined capable, the contractor will be awarded a BOA.

I think it is safe to assume these magazines are heading to the Middle East, which is ironic given that the Army is furiously trying to rid itself of the vast hordes of equipment they have sitting there and cannot get rid of.

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • Nick

    are 7.62 AK mags really that hard to come by in the middle east?

  • Callum King-Underwood

    Heres a solution to the scrap, bring it all back to US soil and use it the next time you end up getting involved in an overseas conflict (no point going political or saying what that conflict might be, but it might well happen and it might be nice to not have to buy new stuff again)

    • sadlerbw

      You ever try to air-mail a box of nails? Tends to cost way more than the nails did. This is the sort of problem they are running into with many items that just don’t meet the cost-weight ratio that makes sense to bring back. It’s not that we can’t get the stuff back over here, but that it would cost less to buy it again in the US next time we need it rather than ship it back from Afghanistan and store it.

      • jamezb

        When you own your own fleets of cargo planes (USAF) and ships, (USN) the crews of which are already on payroll and will be at sea/in the air anyway, that argument becomes moot.

        • -V-

          The fuel cost, the maintenance cost, costs of docking the ships, paying the dockworkers to actually load the stuff onto ships, etc., plus the several tons of marine diesel fuel, equipment maintenance costs, etc. all add up when shipping something, even if the personnel is already on the payroll. Thus, moving something around can be as or more expensive than just buying it new. Also, don’t forget that equipment brought back to the US has to be properly decontaminated per the USDA regulations as to prevent any bring-back of foreign flora that could wreak havoc on the US farm belt. Again, that is added cost. Quickly, it becomes cheaper to trash the old stuff and just buy new stuff when you need it again.

          • Brad Manzenberger

            When I was in the Navy we didn’t pay anyone to load anything for us. That’s what us enlisted folk were for. The ships go to sea regardless.

          • Never Again!

            The Navy ships a miniscule amount of the US armed forces’ equipment that goes by sea.

            Most of what goes by sea goes by way of civilian vessels or military-owned civilian-crewed vessels.

        • Bill

          This is nothing new at all. The biggest example by far was the mass scrapping of material after WW2. Keep in mind this was a time when the U.S. had more transport ships and planes than ever before or since, along with millions of servicemen already on the payroll to move the stuff. Despite this unmatched ability to transport heavy freight, many Pacific fleet carriers were ordered to dump their aircraft over the side as the sailed back to the United States. The same for untold numbers of bombs, torpedoes and ammunition. In Europe, the USAAF burned perfectly good aircraft down to little more than piles of unidentifiable metal. Tanks, half tracks and jeeps were literally given away to every ally in Europe. Even the first atomic bomb wing got in on the wholesale junking. Several researchers are convinced inert practice and conventionally-armed versions of the Fat Man bomb, called Pumpkins, were unceremoniously dumped in the waters off Tinian after war’s end by the 509th Composite Group.

          • Mr Silly

            If I may- a large portion of US material that was intended for an invasion of Japanese.
            A large portion went to the Dutch to recapture Netherlands East Indies. They famous lost that one.
            Another portion went to China for Kuomintang to win. Not a good outcome.
            Another portion was given to France to quell Indo-Chine. Again- not the best outcome.

            I am currently looking for the US Intelligence Colonel who stated this on a Youtube video when he was either USMC or Navy stationed offf Japan. Will definitely be back with a source.

  • Fyrewerx

    No doubt they’ll want to fill them with 7.62 X 39 ammo next, thereby creating a shortage in the Western world.

    • Mouldy Squid

      I hope not. It’s the least expensive ammo in Canada right now.

      • Luc

        The cheap ammo here is chinese. The americans cant get chinese ammo.

        • Mouldy Squid

          Not the stuff I’ve been seeing. The crates are all stamped Czech or Russian surplus.

          • Mr Silly

            Could be knock-offs. Chinese are hardly new at that.

          • Mouldy Squid

            What would be the point of counterfeiting surplus ammunition?

          • Never Again!

            If it’s not marked as Chinese-made some enterprising souls might start shipping it to the US.

          • Anonymous

            Not if it’s the steel core M43 ball, which is banned in the US as an “armor piercing handgun cartridge,” per BATFE.

          • Mr Silly

            Chinese do anything for a profit- King Rama I of Siam (of King and I fame) did not call them “the Jews of the Orient” for no reason.
            When I was posted in Shanghai I was warned never to buy Chinese vegetables, meat (self explanatory) and especially eggs- as Chinese farmers syringe out real eggs and inject fake egg- whatever that may be.
            Do you remember what the “dairies” used as filler for baby formula? Melamine. Chalk. Gypsum..

    • DougE

      I think DoD already contracted to buy 3,000,000 rounds of x39. I’m guessing that they’re building up the Afghan army/police before the drawdown, just like they did before BHO took office because they didn’t know if the war would end abruptly.

  • Landbarger

    Magpul timing wins again…

    • insertjjs

      unfortunately it calls for steel magazines

      • Jay

        Magpul still wins…everyone will be buying their poly mags when you can’t get steel mags here in the states.

        • WheresPatton

          Well hot damn! They are going to be making mags. I need to buy some more x39 mags for a SAM7R I just bought.

          Unfortunately, “available late summer 2013.” Thanks for the heads up!

        • DougE

          When are they due to hit the market?

  • Lance

    Buying them for our enemies like in Syria and maybe soon in Egypt. yeah pay for Islamist to kill allies way to go Obama.

    • Clint Notestine

      lol because no president has ever done that before

      • So we should just keep doing it then?

  • Clint Notestine

    probably heading to Syria

    • Marsh626

      Steve Johnson approves.

  • dancitizen

    nothing suspicious here. Just our government buying half a million magazines in a caliber we don’t use for a gun we also don’t use. Yep, nothing to see here, I’m gong to go watch some cat videos.

    • RobGR

      Shark cat on a Roomba!

      • Mr Silly

        I love that video.

  • Hm

    I agree with Nick, are AK mags REALLY that hard to come by in the middle east? What’s the true motive? Creating a shortage for civilians here in the US? Supplying the UN troops that will be helping to keep the citizenry in line soon? We certainly have been training them.

    • wysoft

      An order for new steel 7.62×39 magazines wouldn’t really create a shortage, since all of the steel mags we get are surplus – with the exception of S. Korea-made mags, and some not-very-popular (Promag) US-made steel mags.

  • Raoul O’Shaugnessy

    Or vast ‘hoards’ even…………..

  • fred

    mm no..

    This is like the purchase of millions of rounds of all types of ammo by various fed agencies..

    They are cornering the market.


  • PatrickHenry1789

    Nothing to see here sheeple, move along citizen!

  • dlg1956

    I guess the Muslim brotherhood is needing them. Imam Obama will do anything to help his pigslamic friends.

    • Mr Silly

      Forgotten what Charlie Wilson under Reagan did for the Afghanis?

  • Zius Patagus

    What happened to the 10s of thousands of AKs/mags captured from Saddam’s arsenals? He had the biggest and best equipped army in the middle east. I thought he had warehouses filled with mags and ammo.

  • Aaron E

    This contract makes about as much sense as Ben Affleck being named the new Batman! You mean to tell me that our extensive dealings with the AK-47 in Vietnam, Beirut, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places not so well mentioned hasn’t produced a massive warehouse full of these things? I’m calling Bull on that one.

    I understand that supplying “allies” with familiar weapons and accessories is necessary, but the need for our government to buy 600,000 new AK-47 magazines seems highly suspicious considering the current state of gun-ban mania going on in the U.S. This sounds a lot more like an unannounced “tax” on what was a fairly cheap rifle and its accessories.

  • Sigivald

    “I think it is safe to assume these magazines are heading to the Middle East”


    ARDEC isn’t the arms-export branch of the Federal government; this stuff is more likely all for research at Picatinny, according to the request.

    I imagine they’re interested in AK variant testing, or making/testing an AR that’s AK magazine compatible.

    And I further imagine they want so many of them so that they won’t have to order more in a few years; it’s not like the AK is suddenly going to stop being relevant to warfighting, so half a million of them (remember, size of contract, not necessarily for delivery in a lump) over an unspecified amount of time is not shocking. They’re a research group, not a business, so they don’t care so much about JIT inventory.

    Like most contracts from the Government, I suspect very strongly that that amount is a program maximum, not a fixed amount.

    (It also helps to remember that that linked thing is a notice of intent, not the request itself! It’s already expired, too.

    And likewise they’re not just asking the troops in the field to send in random pickups, because they’d like magazines that actually work reliably, not random jihadi scrap metal that’s worn out. And I suspect very strongly there’s statutory requirements that DoD buy American Made every time it can.)

  • Cisco Kid

    Well, we know that the Teams already use Chinese AKMs as matter of Course.
    We Know that the AKM platform is better suited than the M4 and its derivatives for CQB in Hamlets, Towns and Cities; such as the conflicts which went down in the Balkans in the 1990s and more recently, Libya and Syria..
    We know for a Fact that the effective range for a 7.62 X 39 is 300 Meters. And That’s OK in AOs as described above; where the enemy often takes refuge behind masonry or dried Mud walls and Berms / Ruins.
    We know that the .223, though accurate to and beyond 500 Meters, Cannot Penetrate masonry at 50 Meters or less. Hence a major reason why many of our troopers in Iraq and Afghanistan swap systems once outside the wire.
    We know that the 7.62 X 54 ( .308) round is better than the 7.62 X 39; but a Trooper can carry more rounds of ’39 than ’54.
    This puts the 7.62 X 39 Round right in the middle of any “Effectiveness for the Weight” contest pitting the .223, the 7.62X39 and the .308Win.
    The M4s are wonderful for Parade. M14s are Heavy, to both carry and feed.
    AKMs in &.62 X 39 are the best option.
    So, Maybe the DOD finally wised up and has decided to put National Chauvinism & Poly-ticks to the side and arm our troops with the BEST Carbine Option for Gettin’ er DONE..!
    Regards and Salutatiuons to one and All