SAIGA 12 Gauge
Country of Origin: Russia
Manufacturer: Izhevsk OJSC
Designer: Gennady Nikonov
Action: Semi auto
Frame: Folded Steel
Caliber: 12 Gauge
also avail in .410 and 20
Bolt: Gas operated, rotating bolt
Barrel Length: 19inch
Selector: 2 stage selector for shot type
Overall Length: 41.7inch
Safety: AK lever style
Butt stock: Polymer
Magazine: 2, 5, 8, 10 round magazine
12, 20, 25 round drum mag avail.
Sights: Iron sights
Rail: Left side mount for optic rail
Joe Biden said that women should "just buy a shotgun..." Well, Ashley, this month's beautiful Guns and Lace girl,couldn't agree with him more when it comes to the allure of owning a Saiga 12 gauge.
Evidently President Obama doesn't agree with them though, as he recently banned the import of this Russian built firearm per his own agenda, issuing Executive Order 13662. Lucky for us we've a brand new, stock, fresh out of the box, Saiga to review and share with you this month.
The Saiga is classified as a sporting rifle and comes with little in the line of frills. It has a reputation for being a great platform to upgrade and I want to start my review by pointing out that very few people keep these stock. Import laws being what they've been, you get what you get, at least until you upgrade with the fun stuff, like a folding butt stock, pistol grip, new trigger assembly, optic and larger magazine or drum mag. I really enjoyed shooting the Saiga just as it came fresh out of the box. From shell one, it performed flawlessly for me without any malfunctions or mis-feeds. Even lighter loads, which my reading told me can be a problem, cycled without a hiccup!
The best thing about this semi-auto shotgun is its capacity. Its stock magazine holds 5 rounds, but larger capacity mags are available and that means that just about as fast as you can pull the trigger and re-aquire you can fire. Perfect for self defense or LE and in fact this has proven a popular shotgun for many police departments. Now don't get me wrong, while both Ashley and myself put this gun through its paces, this is a 12 gauge and it does kick, like any shotgun, a good solid stance and grip are important! Hey guys, if us girls can handle it, you big strong boys should have no problem. Our version was one of the last imports of this model and the later models came with a lock back lever that was a nice feature. Unlike many semi-auto shotguns the Saiga doesn't lock back by itself when empty, it needs to be manually locked back.
The AK receiver is like an old friend in look and feel, even if the piston and gas blow back system aren't surprisingly bigger and a bit different from an AK. We shot 12/70 and 12/76 off the shelf Winchester and Walmart brand bird shot rounds. Tear down was relative easy, though there were some areas I wanted to be able to get to, to clean that I couldn't take apart. While iron sights are iron sights, the manual says this shotgun's are set for 35 meters which is a bit far for most self defense or tactical encounters, once I got used to the sight picture it was no problem kicking ass and taking names at both 15 and 25 yards with a nice tight shot pattern.
Our model had the added feature of a stock, left side mount bracket, for adding a rail that comes up and over the receiver for mounting an optic. It's a shotgun, not a .22 competition rifle, but none the less, this girl likes red dot style optics so don't expect this Saiga to stay stock for long. I've already started my list and hope to be accessorizing soon! Now I just need to find a nice pair of boots to match! - Anna
Hair Color: Auburn
Hair Length: Long
Eye Color: Brown
Lives in: Washington
Favorite Gun: AR15
Favorite Actor: Anthony Hopkins
Favorite Book: Shade of Vampire
Favorite Show: American Horror Story
Favorite Movie: Pulp Fiction
Favorite Band: Led Zeppelin
Favorite Food: Grilled Cheese
Drink: Jack and Coke
Favorite Quote: "Sometimes you need to forget how you feel, and remember what you deserve!"
Guns and Lace girl Ashley is one of the few girls who is as comfortable with a Saiga 12 Gauge in either a video game or out on the gun range! Her favorite first person shooter game is Borderland. Guns and Lace Miss September describes the perfect vacation as a trip to the mountains, going camping, hiking and shooting. Ashley is not married and not in any particular hurry to be otherwise unless and until she finds that perfect soul mate. Currently, she lives and works in Puyallup, WA and loves it there.
For those of you who enjoy tattoos, what more could you ask for than a beautiful woman with body art who enjoys the great outdoors and going shooting!