Century Arms’ VSKA: First Shots

This originally appeared on American Partisan. Both of those VSKAs have been run hard and put up wet, used as training rifles for students in class both in the AK courses and as OPFOR weapons. They’re continuing to perform well. -NCS

A search for Century Arms online can certainly garner some interesting points. They get a lot of hate- some deservedly, some not so much so- but one thing they’ve been synonymous with over the years is the AK platform. My first AK was a battered old WASR-10 way back in 2004, and despite its looks it was a shooter. I never had an issue with it and years later, the buddy I sold it to still breaks it out every once in a while to run a drill or two. He’s still a happy camper.

Point is, those old WASRs got a bit of a reputation among the very vocal folks online, and there probably were some really shabby ones floating around. But they weren’t the dumpster trash some made them out to be and these days they’re one of the more sought-after AK models. And while Century was primarily an importer, later on they threw their hat into the ring of making an American AK. It hasn’t been an easy one. Their first attempt was the RAS-47, which failed because cast trunnions have no place on an AK. They must be forged, plain and simple, which led them to developing the VSKA with a forged trunnion and bolt. The question is, is it any good?

I picked up one from Classic Firearms for the sake of running it. It was their ‘blemished’ model, meaning there was a small imperfection in the looks, in this case the rear face of the front trunnion. No way it was cherry picked, straight off the shelf, took out of the box, and put into the student’s hands in my last Fighting Kalashnikov course. And after 400 rounds there plus another 100 in the few days since, let’s take a look.

Nothing looking unusual.

We certainly can see the blemishing, but it didn’t affect the performance at all. The weapon experienced zero malfunctions both from the students’ use in class or my own.

Bolt guide rails look fine.

More roll marks from the forging, but again, zero malfunctions. There’s also no mushrooming of the rear of the bolt carrier.

Bolt face and extractor looks fine. Quick note: Early editions of this weapon experienced weak ejections. This one did not. The spent casings were all thrown in typical AK fashion…beyond the end of the firing line and into the next zip code.

Bolt looks good.

100m, prone unsupported, using irons. Not bad. Those groups would shrink by about half with a decent optic.

I really like the extended mag latch. Overall, its a decent AK build thus far. I changed the awful slant break on the muzzle for a Legion USA flash can, front handguard for an AK-100 series polymer with a head shield and I plan on changing the stock as well- its a NATO length stock (9in) and I prefer the shorter Warsaw Pact length (8in). But other than that, no complaints.

We’ll see in time.

5 thoughts on “Century Arms’ VSKA: First Shots

  1. Pat Hines

    I have to ask why are essays about AK pattern rifles continually being posted in this otherwise excellent information resource?

    I can personally afford any type of battle rifle, after many years in the US military, I can personally state that the AR pattern rifle is significantly better than any AK pattern ever made.

    Today the AR-15 is lower cost, more accurate, and better built, period. No excuses needed, it’s just that much better.

    Which means I can’t for the life of me figure out why anyone would select an AK as a personal weapon.

    1. That’s an opinion, not a fact.

      Further, to my knowledge, you’ve never been in actual combat. So sorry, your ‘opinion’ carries no weight.

      1. Pat Hines

        Well, no, it’s not an opinion, it is objective fact. It’s been proven over and over again.

        I don’t know your personal history, however, simply being “in combat” carries no weight.

      2. I’ve personally been on both ends of the AK platform. It works. You can’t say that.

        So yeah, in short, that’s why MY FUCKING OPINION matters a lot more than yours.

Comments are closed.