Yugo-Pattern AK’s in CT Explained

Per the Assault Weapons Bans in Connecticut, “Avtomat Kalashnikov AK 47 type” weapons are banned by name. Unique to the other name bans as this is a “type ban”, in our context this means that no matter the semi-automatic configuration, ANY “Avtomat Kalashnikov AK 47 type” weapons are prohibited from possession. See the 2013 assault weapons definition here. It has been determined by multiple FFLs that the Yugo-pattern AK’s (Zastava Arms M92, M85, M70, M90, M77, etc…) pass this test and are legal to sell in the state of Connecticut when modified to pass the feature test.

So, what defines an AK-type weapon? Used in several court cases over the years, there is a “tripartite test” that the State Police can use to distinguish whether something is/isn’t an “AK-type” weapon. 1. Parts interchangeability, 2. Functionality, 3. Appearance. When held to the standard of this test, all Yugo-pattern AK’s meet 2 of these standards: functionality and appearance. Just like the AK 47, any of the Yugo AK’s use a long stroke gas operating system. The Yugos also sport a very similar appearance to it’s Russian cousins, while subjective… they are certainly aesthetically identify-able as “an AK of sorts”. Having failed two parts of the tripartite test, the Yugo AK’s pass this test on the grounds of parts interchangeability. Let’s break that down further.

Many AK’s across the world are built on what’s referred to as a “stamped receiver”, which effectively amounts to a piece of sheet steel that’s bent and finished. All of the Russian-spec AK’s are built on a 1mm thickness receiver, whilst the Yugo-spec AK’s are built on a 1.5mm thickness receiver. The Yugo AK’s also all feature a “bulged” receiver/front trunnion which is a familiar characteristic of the RPK. In the context of this article, a 1.5mm bulged receiver as opposed to a 1mm receiver means that there is a vast difference in various other components in the firearm. The front/rear trunnions that retain the barrel/stock are not interchangeable because of this difference in the receiver.

With this unique trunnion brought by the unique receiver, the Yugo-spec AK’s also have barrels that are turned to a different diameter than Russian-spec AK’s. This means that the gas block, front sight block, and many of the other components are not interchangeable. The Yugo-spec AK’s also feature a distinctly different handguard, slightly longer with three ports on either side as opposed to two.

To quickly spot a Yugo AK as opposed to a Russian, simply look for the three ports on the handguard and bulged trunnion.

Want a CT-legal Yugo-pattern AK? Come to the shop and plan your build today!



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