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Thread: mak 90 history

  1. #1
    Marksman

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    mak 90 history

    so i just pick up a mak 90 and im having a hard time finding a detailed history. if anyone has a link or wants to copy it here id greatly appreciate it.

  2. #2
    Grandmaster indykid's Avatar

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    The MAK-90 (Modified AK model year 1990) was a result of George Bush the First believing that features of a rifle could be evil, and would cause an otherwise honest person to become a baby killing machine. By removing the ability to install a flash hider and bayonet and removing the "conspicuous pistol grip" and replacing the stock with what I coined a "Bush-hole" stock, the rifle became angelic and unable to cause any violence. Yes there is a lot of purple there, but that is also what he did. His executive order demanded ATF follow the 1968 GCA rules for importation which outlined what was an "assault weapon" and what was a "sporting purpose" weapon.

    The first MAK-90s still had threaded barrels, with the cleaning rod attachment intact but the bayo lug ears ground off. These were the so-called "caught in port" models. Many still had the original name (56S) X'd out as even the name was considered evil, and the MAK-90 name hand stamped on the receiver or front trunion. Some had the name and factory stamp very professionally ground off, with MAK-90 restamped on the trunnion.

    There were also some Poly Tech rifles that were made "sporting". These can be determined by the 386 factory stamp still on the rifle, and the longer collar for the underfolding bayo still intact but the bayo attachment cut off.

    The next set that came in were factory marked MAK-90s that had unthreaded but full diameter barrels, with no attachment lugs for the cleaning rod. Some had the hole for the muzzle device in the front sight base, some didn't.

    In 1993 and the final year 1994, Norinco actually date stamped the rifle, with the 93 or 94 in front of the serial number. There were also some that came in with the barrel muzzle turned down to prevent the rifle from being threaded to the standard 14x1mm left hand thread. Fortunately you can thread the turned down barrels as there are slant brakes made in 1/2x28 right hand for an original AK look even though most Chinese had muzzle nuts on the barrel.

    All were great rifles, with the receiver still built to a high standard of quality, retaining that great trigger feel that were arguably the best of any factory made AK variant. They all were very good shooters, and easy to remove the Bush-hole stock and install the standard 56S stock set for an almost original look. Unfortunately finding pre-ban front sight and gas blocks is nearly impossible because the parts were also banned along with the rifles in 1994.

    Oh, there were some that had the rear receiver cut at an odd angle in an attempt to prevent the installation of a separate pistol grip and original stock. Ironwood Designs makes a Norinco looking stock to fit this odd-ball receiver.

    Hope this brief history helps. If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.

  3. #3
    Marksman

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    also my ak has something ground out and mak 90 sporter "electro penciled?" over. No where on the gun does it say norinco or have any factory markings on it, serial number is 5 digit with NO year code, appears to have the muzzle threads and bayo lug ground off. Importer markings read GBE L.A. CA.

  4. #4
    Marksman

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    also just found the 386 factory engraved also not that i would sell but what would this be worth

  5. #5
    Mickey Mantle Trigger Time's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by warriorbob View Post
    also just found the 386 factory engraved also not that i would sell but what would this be worth
    If it's a flat back receiver then maybe 650 to 700. The fact that it can't be threaded to 14x1 LH is a detractor to myself. I still love mak90's though. Arsenal brand quality without the price tag. Plus better finish. The arsenal finish sucks.
    The two things that I do not like about the mak90's or any china ak is that standard stocks won't fit them without mods. Also no scope rail attachment on the side. Yeah you can add one but I'd rather not
    Wherever I go, there I am

  6. #6
    Grandmaster indykid's Avatar

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    Just to add, my favorite saying on Chinese rifles is that the only rule with Chinese AK variants, there were no rules. They would make anything the importer wanted as long as a minimum number were ordered.

    But there were a few rules that they did follow. One was that all Chinese AK variants were blued. Some better than others, some with a bluing that was close to what added to the special look of the older Colt revolvers, a very deep blue. Some looked like the bluing was an afterthought.

    Another thing about all Chinese AKM variants was that their receivers were 1.5 mm thick versus the pretty standard European ones at 1.0 mm. That is why using other than Chinese furniture requires some filing and sanding to get them to fit.

    As for the 386 being stamped on the front trunion, as I said earlier that denotes one that used to be Poly Tech. ATF had the importers do such a good job scrubbing the "evil" off the rifles that all remains of the name "Poly Tech" and the Keng import markings were very nicely removed. The rifles were "sporting purposed" and a new importer was stamped on after ATF approval that the rifles were angelic. Some people feel the 386 marked MAK-90 a is worth a little more because of it's Poly Tech roots, and yes the Keng family did make sure that their rifles were better than most, but figure maybe $50 more than the average MAK-90.

    MAK-90s these days are selling for $700 and up, and as more people get into the sport, because there are a fixed number of them in the land of shall not be infringed, you can figure prices and value steadily increasing.

    One other thing, there were some milled Poly Tech Legends that got caught up in the Bush1 evil panic. Being milled receiver, they are commanding a higher value these days, with the bottom being what the old Legend itself sold for, about $1000. One issue with the milled receiver MAK-90 is that they milled the rear of the receiver in the shape of the Legend underfolder, so it has a strange double angle cut to it, and instead of the standard rectangular opening for a standard AK stock, it has a round hole to keep us from returning it to it's original pre-Bush1 glory. Again, Ironwood Designs makes a stock to fit the odd shape of the milled MAK-90.

  7. #7
    Marksman

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    thanks for all the info. I havent been able to find to much on my own, mostly threads on forums playing the mak 90 vs what ever game lol. When where chinese firearms banned all together? after further inspection i found that where my importers mark is there is alot of discrete grinding i guess to remove the poly tech factory marks. the only ak ive had before this one was a wasr and although i havent shot this one yet i can already tell they are worlds apart. The mak is tight and has a really smooth trigger! I like it better than most factory ar's ive had. Cant wait to go out later and put some rounds on target! When i figure out how to post pics ill get em up.

  8. #8
    Grandmaster indykid's Avatar

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    william jefferson clinton, along with an all democrat congress finished off the military style weapons being imported from China, along with AK variants made by other nations by banning them by name in 1994. There were also several other rifles banned at this time, which was also the year he passed his stupid "assault weapons"/ magazine capacity ban. Luckily the assault weapon ban of 1994 had a 10 year sunset provision, but the ban on military based rifles by name was separate and has no expiration or sunset date.

    You can make your own photo album on this site, then upload your photos here. To add them to your thread after uploading them, in your album, open the picture you want to post, then right click on it and select "copy photo URL".
    Then come back to your post, click on the square button at the top of the editor box that is yellow with what looks like a mountain with the sun in the yellow sky. That brings up a box for you to paste the URL into. Click ok, and the photo will appear in your post.

    Looking forward to some pictures!

  9. #9
    Plinker

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    Hey guys. Hope you get this notification being it's an old thread. But I seem to have found a rifle the same as warriorbob. Mak90 factory 386 in the oval cw prefix serial number but all other markings were removed and where one was "gbe imports" has been written over it. A week of research alter and I've stumbled upon this thread. Curious if you found anymore info over the years. Did some research myself talked to kengs sent them the serial they said it didnt match their records. They called back 10 minutes later saying it should because of the the cw prefix but they're not seeing it and wanted some pictures. Sent them but the second the saw "gbe imports" clearly over where something else once was mind you, they said nope not ours and that was the end. So is it a true polytech? And if so who's it, kengs? id assume they'd have the serial number in their records. Or is it "gbe" and if so who are they? All I could find was the gbe may stand for "Goose berry enterprises" but that's it couldn't find anything about them at all. Thanks guys hope you're all doing well. -Bruno

  10. #10
    Grandmaster indykid's Avatar

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    Welcome to the group BrunoN!



    There were many rifles in port when the George Bush the First declared features of a rifle cause their owner to become a baby killing machine. The rifle you have seems to be one of them. Original markings on many were scrubbed completely off, some obvious and some very well done. This included the importer that was supposed to get the rifle. It is very possible that yours was partly scrubbed, obvious by the 386 and serial number. The original importers names were scrubbed, the rifle then converted from the evil baby killing 56S or AKS-762 to the MAK-90 approved name. After the evil parts were removed to meet the new AT and unconstitutional F sporting purpose clause of the new second amendment, they were then sold to most likely the first importer to show up.

    I don't believe Keng ever import stamped any MAK-90s and they don't have record of your rifle because it went to another importer who then put their markings on it.

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