It’s not every day I come across a firearm that leaves me baffled and confused the way this one did. Usually when I find a gun that’s been modified, or is in an odd configuration, I can at least immediately identify the type of firearm that was modified, but the, err, weapon Max Popenker posted to his blog really threw me for a loop:
The large, AK-like magazine in the first image at first had me convinced this weapon was a rifle in 7.62×39 caliber, but the only single element of the gun I could identify was the heavily modified AKS-style underfolding stock. The action of the gun, its short barrel, and the various accessories shown with it all baffled me. We’ll get to exactly what the gun itself is in a minute, but my first revelation about the gun was that the AK-style magazine was a total red herring. This was not a rifle at all, but a bolt-action shotgun. Therefore, the large mysterious box in the center of the second image is the rifle’s actual high-capacity magazine, while the smaller box on the right, and the AK-style magazine are both lower capacity units, the one on the left almost certainly being for display only. This weapon being a shotgun also solves the mystery of what the tubular devices to the right of the image are: They are muzzle extensions and/or choke tubes (though one of them appears to be a brake).
Finally, I uncovered what this weapon is: A Russian (did you doubt that for a second?) TOZ-106 hunting shotgun, in 20 gauge. Russian civilians must first purchase and safely own shotguns for a period of time before they are able to purchase real rifles, so the TOZ-106 is an offering that would appeal to a certain segment of the Russian civilian market.
The stock and forend unit, although it looks like it is homemade, is actually the one the shotgun came with, painted black by the owner (with the exception of a spot for his hand – maybe the paint rubs off). The underfolding stock unit is also factory, but the pistol grip is not, and the bolt handle has apparently been straightened and the knob blackened somehow. The muzzle has been modified to accept the devices shown in the image, and a low-power scope has been mounted.