- Created: Monday, 04 July 2011 17:21
For AK users out there you may be used to doing some ghetto cord ties to get desired interfacing with single point slings. Fortunately ECHO93 has made a series of AK Sling Plates that offer a little something for everyone and do it in the KISS spirit of the AK. Machined and made of thick parkerized steel, these plates are ready for combat abuse. Another big plus is that installation is overall painless merely requiring the removal of the pistol grip and sneaking the plate between the receiver and the grip. Parts can vary, however the grip screw is almost always long enough so no other extra parts are needed. To help narrow this down, ECHO93 recommends the plates for AKM type stamped receivers.
For some quick clarification, sorry about the wacky stock as it was all that was around during the photo shoot. It has some sling mounts as well which may cause some confusion. Not to get too much into it, but The adjustable stock part is cool, the sling mounts being plastic and overly thick, not so rad.
V-1 is designed for a true ambidextrous setup great for those who may change firing shoulders on the fly. It is rounded with no sharp edges and has a generous connection ring size to decrease snagging and bunching of the connector. When looking at the pics one may be concerned it starts to mess with the operator's hand, however overall it is out of the way. Despite testing on many firing positions, the only time I was worried about issues was if the rifle was free hanging and a rushed grab for the grip was performed. This may cause the hand to hit the plate or sling first if coming too close to the receiver. This is still more of a worst case scenario as grabbing the weapon with a V-1 still feels natural and doesn't require a technique change. V-1 fits most stamped receiver Kalishnikovs variants on both fixed and folding stocks.
V-2 goes for a side priority approach, yet is still reversible to set it up on either side desired. Being on one side can help keep the sling generally out of the way and a little easier to keep it laying flat against the body when hanging free on the sling. Despite sticking out at a tangent from the receiver, I didn't run into comfort issues yet. A tight sling setup high on the chest with no vest / rig on may be what it takes to get to the point of discomfort. The connection hole is somewhat small which makes it better for HK snap hooks as it helps prevent accidental release. As the counter point this makes a Mash Hook slightly more difficult to take on and off, however nothing drastic. Even when the weapon is held by the support hand, the plate does not prevent operation, I'd say the sling just dangles touching the hand more. V-2 is compatible with many side folders, however is NOT compatible with underfolding stocks.
V-3 is basically a V-2 remix both sharing the side priority concept and reversible for right or left hand shooters. Instead of sticking out at 90 degrees, V-3 goes up at an angle which I think helps keep the sling business away from the hand. Again it will take a tight sling setup to matter, but V-3 will also be more comfortable pressed up hard against a chest. The larger connection opening is easier to use with Mash Hooks, and while it will of course still work with HK hooks, they have a slightly higher chance for accidental release. As expected, operation is still solid when using with the support hand. Along with AKMs, V-3 works well with right hand shooter AMD-65s and other receivers with a slant cut rear.
With the current intro price of $20 it is hard to go wrong with any of the ECHO93 AK Plates and having 3 different options lets the user pick what is exactly best for them. Highly recommended for single point slings users.