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An Affordable Ultra-Compact Carbine With Shotgun-Like Firepower?

Image source: akfiles.com

Image source: akfiles.com

Last year I wrote about the National Firearms Act, and how to get around the law by using an SB 47/SB 15 pistol brace as an improvised stock.

In summary, the brace has made non-NFA rifles with barrels shorter than 16 inches legal.

About that time, I had just gotten an M92 PAP equipped with an SB 47 brace and was loving it. It’s been a few months, and I have a lot more trigger time behind it. I took a local carbine course as a guest, and I was the only one using such a contraption. The course was basic, and took place from 25 yards to 5 yards, with about 400 rounds total. The M92 PAP performed like a champ, but I didn’t feel that I felt the true potential of the carbine.

I don’t mince words; I call this a pistol with a brace, a carbine with a rubber stock. That’s how I use it, anyway. So what is the true potential of a weapon like this? Well, first off, in close-quarters battle this beast is hard to beat. The short barrel makes the weapon handy to move around corners and doors, and inside buildings in general. The caliber, a 7.62 x 39 mm, is a powerful round that only loses at most 200 feet per second from the 10-inch barrel. The round is a capable penetrator, and can be devastating at close range.

The M92 PAP can be considered a personal defense weapon, for both technical and political reasons. Politically, the term “personal-defense” is both more realistic and easier on the ears than whatever the anti-gun crowds lies to the public about. Your average personal defense weapon is often considered a glorified submachine gun in some oddball caliber that will never be adopted by a First World military. For example, when you look at weapons like the AKSU 74, you see a more realistic and effective PDW, an extremely short rifle, chambered in a capable and common cartridge. Another excellent example is the AAC Honey Badger in 300 Blackout.

The M92 PAP makes for an excellent personal defensive weapon with less recoil than a shotgun, and more lethality and power than a pistol. It is longer than a traditional pistol, but when you factor in the fact that one must extend your arms to effectively aim a traditional pistol, the M92 PAP isn’t much longer. Plus, you get a much more powerful rifle cartridge, a more stable platform, and 30 rounds of ammunition.

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As a close-range weapon, you can’t beat the M92. It features flip-up combat sights for close-range engagements. I really don’t see a purpose for the so-called 400-meter sights, and really haven’t used them. This isn’t a weapon to produce quarter-sized groups, but a weapon designed to fight, and score hits on man-sized targets.

It terms of recoil and muzzle rise, it’s pretty much non-existent. I personally was expecting a lot more recoil, but was surprised that the weapon was so easy to handle. It’s a heavy little beast, and feels substantially heavier than a traditional WASR AK, and I imagine this helps reduce the recoil.

In terms of the brace as a stock, does it leave something to be desired? Well, yes and no. The brace works well for close-range shooting and fighting, within a hundred yards or so, with supported positions capable of decent 200-yard accuracy on a man-sized torso. It’s not as good as, say, a collapsible stock on an M4, but it’s for sure better than a skeletonized underfolder in every category besides length of pull.

The SB 47 brace gives the weapon a very short length of pull, which is great for small shooters, or when wearing body armor. Under normal conditions it’s OK, but I found myself operating the weapon closer inwards on my chest to gain a bit more stability and run the front sight nearly exclusively.

The M92 PAP is a military weapon produced for the Serbian military. Of course, the main differences being the lack of a selective fire component, and a traditional underfolding stock. Other than that and the lack of a muzzle break, the weapon is identical to its military counterparts. This means like most AKs it’s rugged, reliable and will work no matter what environment you are in.

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The weapon is also quite affordable, coming in at about $550, with a brace and two magazines. An interesting feature to this weapon is a last-round hold-open feature. This makes reloading a bit quicker. It’s one of the few AKs to have such a feature, and by far one of the most affordable.

The two magazines included are steel, Euro surplus style. That means they are a bit tougher than a polymer mag, but also a bit heavier.

The only upgrade I’ve considered and purchased is a proper muzzle brake, which helps contain the flash. Even fired in the middle of the day, the M92 PAP has a mighty flash signature when fired with the full-sized rifle cartridge. Anyone wanting an optic can mount a forward railed gas tube cover to mount a red dot, or other long eye relief optic. Any traditional rifle optic is a bit wasted on a weapon designed for close range fighting. Keep the optic short range and you have a heck of a home defense rifle.

This weapon can also be a good contender for a truck or trunk gun. Its small size makes it capable of fitting anywhere, and its 7.62 power makes it a powerful weapon for nearly any situation. The M92 PAP is a weapon capable of taking game and defending against two-legged predators. You also have the ability to remove the SB 47 brace and magazine to make a weapon compact enough to fit into a backpack for a concealed option.

The PAP M92 equipped with the SB 47 brace is one of those rare combinations of firepower and compactness that works. The weapon is much more convenient than waiting six months, paying a $200 tax, being on a registration list, and having to ask permission to travel with or sell your property. The weapon is quite efficient in many tasks, and while the brace isn’t a proper stock, for the time being it’s what we’ve got, and what we have to work with.

Have you ever fired a PAP M92? Share your thoughts and tips on it in the section below:

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One comment

  1. Please be advised that in Jan 2015 the ATF issued an open letter regarding the brace with the following language “However, this classification is based upon the use of the device as designed. When the device is redesigned for use as a shoulder stock on a handgun with a rifled barrel under 16 inches in length, the firearm is properly classified as a firearm under the NFA.”

    the entire letter can be found here:
    http://www.atf.gov/content/Firearms/firearms-industry

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