Mike reviews the Century International Arms RAS47 AK Rifle.
U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- Once known for being the king of imported collector firearms Century International Arms had to adapt as supplies of surplus arms began to dry up around the world a few years ago.
The company has shifted its sights to importing modern firearms from other countries and by building a few of their own designs.
The company constantly pushes the envelope with new and innovative designs for the AK platform and we took a look at their latest offering, the RAS-47.
This is a 100% “Made in America” variation of the Kalashnikov AK design. From 5 feet away, you would not know it to see the blonde wood and the Combloc style side rail on what is probably the most identifiable rifle in the world.
Then a few things jump out at you such as the proprietary US pistol grip and the lack of the ubiquitous under barrel cleaning rod and bayonet lug.
If you are a purist, those details may upset you, as well as the choice of including 2 MagPul P- Mags instead of stamped steel or old school Bakelite magazines. If you are just looking to add an AK to your collection as a shooter of cheap surplus ammo and do not care if it was not made by a former Soviet satellite state or even know what to do with a mounted bayonet, then read on.
Century International Arms RAS47 AK Rifle – The Good
Our first impression was that the build was performed well. Fit and finish was outstanding for an AK and the wood looked pretty damn flawless to us.
The sight was not canted and we liked the polymer pistol grip for our XXL sized hands.
Again, this may make the purists upset but this is not intended to be a Cold War era replica. This is an American made copy of that rifle.
At the range the Century International Arms RAS-47 Rifle shot well. Our first few range sessions were a bit different than normal, we were after reliability and with 2 exceptions we achieved it.
Accuracy is typical “Minute of Man” and it helped decimate some leftover pumpkins from Halloween.
Century International Arms RAS47 AK Rifle – The Bad
As an AK it is definitely not a match grade rifle, but it was reliable and consistent with our mix of ammunition.
We did have a few problems with some Wolf ammunition on the last round in the two included PMags, but we believe the problems were related to the magazines because switching out to our old steel Yugoslavian magazines had it running like a typewriter again.
A few things to note are that the bolt and trunions look to be cast. This caused some concern, particularly with regard to the bolt carrier. Investment casting has come a long way, but we are still leery of cast parts around a high-pressure rifle round.
However, since 2013, Century has been performing a heat treat on the bolts to harden them and prevent issues in the future. This can be identified by the X marked on the bottom of the carrier and if yours does not have it, we recommend you call into Century to have it done.
There are no accessories beyond a pair of Magpul AK magazines and a side rail for mounting a scope. No surplus bayonets, sight tools, magazine pouches, oilers or even the under barrel cleaning rod come with this rifle. Still, it is not an imported rifle, so it does not need them for the sake of continuity.
Century International Arms RAS47 AK Rifle – The Reality
It may be election aftermath and general confusion of a market that was ramping up for potential bans or talk of bans and hoarders grabbing every last thing they could. We did a quick look around and could not believe that some AK variants are now out pricing ARs.
We are not even talking about the super rare Steyr imported Maadis, reworked Saigas or genuine imported rifles prior to 1989, but some that are cobbled together kits made by God knows who from God knows what in the 4-digit price range.
The RAS-47 seems to be the most affordable option out there for someone looking to pick up an AK. Until our new president undoes the onerous George HW Bush 1989 Import Ban or removes the sanctions from China and Russia regarding importation of Kalashnikov clones (and their ammunition), this may be the lowest priced offering you will see for quite some time.
About Mike Searson
Mike Searson’s career as a shooter began as a Marine Rifleman at age 17. He has worked in the firearms industry his entire adult life as a Gunsmith, Ballistician, Consultant, Salesman, Author and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1989.
Mike has written over 2000 articles for a number of magazines, websites and newsletters including Blade, RECOIL, OFF-GRID, Tactical Officer, SWAT, Tactical World, Gun Digest, Examiner.com and the US Concealed Carry Association as well as AmmoLand Shooting Sports News.