Costa’s Gat Swag: Kalashnikov USA KR-9 AK Short Barreled Rifle

    Welcome to Costa’s Gat Swag. A monthly installment of some subgun, SBR, or SBS that I have built or bought. I have an addiction to shorties. I love versatile PDW setups, and I am here to share some of my favorite builds. Meet the KR-9 9mm AK SBR with Zenitco handguard, hand stop and IR/Vis laser. Equipped with a cute little 9mm can and optic. A fun blaster and quickly becoming one of my favorite pistol caliber sub guns.

    Kalashnikov USA KR-9 – 9mm Sub AK

    Out of the gate, the KR-9 is a fantastic little AK package. It comes with a neat little muzzle brake that’s great for unsuppressed shooting and a grip that needed to be changed desperately. The brake ended up in the bin of forgotten gun parts because we suppress everything. The KR-9 is a blowback gun. It does have the cantilever arm where the piston would be inserted and pinned into. The arm is cut short and there is no piston. With that being said, with a suppressor, it is slightly gassy. You are not having the gases escape at the gas block, instead escaping back into the receiver. It’s not all that terrible, but something to note.

    The factory trigger on the KR-9 is also decent. It’s a Tapco G2. If you are familiar with doing an AK trigger job, the KR-9 is fantastic for that. I polished and reduced the contact surfaces on the hammer and the disconnect. It feels much slicker than a standard AK trigger thought. The trigger functions much like the ALG lightning trigger, but much safer. I will not ever switch this trigger out. It’s only getting better with time. I run ALG lightning triggers on my 5.45x39mm guns but never recommend to new shooters.

    Russian Flare

    I didn’t want to go full alpha on this build. I wanted it to be tactical and sexy, yet still embraced the classic East Bloc look. The kr9 is running a ZenitCo B-21M Vityaz handguard, and Zenitco RK-6 hand stop. The top handguard/gas tube cover is a Khyber Customs wood guard. I probably should have gone Picatinny but I like the weight savings and I have nothing else to mount on top. The KR-9 already comes with a Picatinny dust cover. I used a Blue Force Gear forward sling mount to secure the Edgar Sherman design Multicam Arid sling froward on the FSB.

    Moderate Sound suppression and laser beams

    This is the original Dead Air Wolf SD with the first can segment only. If offers moderate sound suppression without adding too much length to the SBR. It also consumes most of the muzzle flash. Making this pint-sized AK very fun to run under Nods.

    Zenitco Perst 4 Green Vis/IR laser is very well built. It does not have an illuminator. Because it is on a shorty 9mm, very slight rail play will not affect the accuracy of laser enough to be worrisome. I have is set to a constant offset rather than apex zero at some known distance. It is a FULL POWER laser. This is the benefit of ordering from overseas. The bloom under nods is not terrible. The controls of the unit and the aux controls help manage brightness.

    Impressive controls on the laser device

    The Zenitco Perst 4 comes with a very impressive control switch. Zenitco has great attention to detail. The switch cable alone has a QD locking mechanism much like an air hose on a compressor. It’s cut very well, with lots of grip. The switch housing is very tight to the handguard and fastens to the Picatinny. It has a rubberized main switch for constant, slow strobe, and momentary features. It has a dial, easily manipulated by your thumb for brightness adjustment. The same controls are also built into the laser housing itself.

    minimal top-down footprint

    Perst 4 laser housing on the right, and the Perst 4 control switch on the left. You can see how tight to the rail the switch is. A Trijicon RMR is a good PCC optic option because it fits in the width of the rifle system without adding girth….yes I said girth.

    optics and bUIS

    I have the KR-9 set up with an ANVL Mfg UKON RMR Mount with a micro co-witness. Once an optic is added to an AK platform, the irons are no longer usable. This mount gives the end user the ability to get a micro co-witness if the optic is to fail.

    Mount Up: ANR Design ANVL UKON RMR Base with BUIS

    9mm AK platform guns

    I really wanted a 9mm AK since I saw the Kalashnikov USA KR-9 advertised at the SHOT Show for the past few years and eagerly awaited the distribution of the weapon system. This gun did not disappoint. There were some issues with cracked dust covers, Kalashnikov USA has since fixed the issue. The only real issue my gun has is that the stock does not stay latched in the collapsed position. Some friends actually had too much retention and had to Dremel out the sheet metal feature on the stock to alleviate retention. I have not found a solution to my problem, and added a rubber butt pad to help keep the stock in position better than using smooth sheet metal has now created an interference with my handguard.

    This firearm has made 9mm SBRs fun again for me! I am so happy to run this gun, and it is an absolute blast under NVG. I recommend this gun to anyone that wants a more affordable, yet quality sub 9mm AK, or sub gun in general.

    [SHOT 2019] Kalashnikov USA KR-9 is now shipping to dealers

    There are a few other 9mm AK platform guns floating around. Chiappa, Century, and PSA make 9mm Sub AKs; I’ve been hands on with all of them, and found the Kalash USA to be the best one available in the States.

    We are committed to finding, researching, and recommending the best products. We earn commissions from purchases you make using the retail links in our product reviews. Learn more about how this works.
    Alex C

    – Avid shooter and practicer of weaponcraft
    – NFA guru
    – PRS Enthusiast Competitor
    – CEO / Owner ANR Design LLC & ANVL MFG
    – Mechanical Engineer
    IG: @anrdesignllc @alex_anrdesignllc @anvl.usa
    Twitter: @anrdesignllc