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Arsenal Incorporated’s SA M-7 Carbine is a Made in USA 7.62 x 39 mm semi-automatic. It’s also an improved copy of the AK-47 and thus one of Arsenal’s “historical” AK-platform models. In fact, the “M” in the gun’s initialism stands for Modernized. SA M-7s use milled receivers instead of the stamped receivers on some of Arsenal’s other guns. The M-7 Carbine uses a shorter barrel and uses matte black polymer furniture. More specifically, it uses FRP (fiber glass reinforced polycaproamide) for the upper and lower handguards, the pistol grip, the buttstock and magazine.

The SA M-7A1 starts with a hot-die hammer forged receiver blank that’s milled for 5.5 hours by the parent company Arsenal Co. of Bulgaria. The hammer forging aligns the metal, strengthens the steel and eliminates internal voids (tiny bubbles). Other hammer forged parts include the barrel, receiver, bolt carrier, and bolt. The result of all the hammer forging and milling is rugged durability.

Some prefer the original AK-style stamped receivers for their lighter weight but decades ago, Arsenal found the milled ones improved quality. In a turn of fortunes, now stamped receivers can also be made with the same quality. In any case, the Bulgarian-made receiver is shipped to the USA for assembly with other parts.

This semi-auto has a front sight block with a bayonet lug and comes with a cleaning rod. Like true historical Soviet AKs, this one uses the shorter classic Soviet-style buttstock.

The gun’s chrome lined hammer forged heavy barrel is 16.33” long and sits below the classic slanted gas block. The chrome adds to durability. The bore is 6-groove rifled with a 1 to 9.44” twist ratio, and the barrel has 14mm threads. Other key dimensions include a 34.4” total length. Arsenal specifies overall weight at 7.2 pounds unloaded.

The semi-automatic comes with a 30-round “Waffle Pattern" mag. The company’s magazines are very durable with plenty of metal/steel reinforcements at the bottom, along the inner curved frontstrap, at the feed lips on top, etc.

The gun has a 40-rounds per minute rate though that’s more than the standard magazine’s 30-round capacity! So you can empty it in about 45 seconds.

Maximum range is 1,480 yards, and muzzle velocity is 2,329 feet per second. Thus, rounds should cover that range in about two seconds.

Arsenal is the exclusive US manufacturer of guns designed by the Circle 10 Factory, Arsenal of Kazanlak in central Bulgaria. Arsenal started operations in 2000 and is based in Las Vegas, Nevada. It makes a line of shoulder-fired, gas-operated, magazine-fed semi-automatics based on 7.62x39mm, 5.56x45mm, and 5.45x39.5mm calibers using forged, CNC milled or stamped receivers.

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