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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have seen Bulgy AK74 trunnions with 28, 29, 30, and 31 for year codes. I was wondering if there was a consensus among the community as far as when wood was switched to plum and any info which can confirm (ideally by photo of original kits) which years are correct for the sidefolders and whether they really were originally issued with black furniture only?

I dont wish to fuel speculation, but I have come to view 28-30 as correct for wood and 30 and 31 as correct for plum. That said, I missed out on the glut of original barreled kits which would likely be a better source of data than the kits we seen now, since it seems that furniture may not be staying with the numbered parts.
 

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Dunno., they seemed to mix and match and many of the kits were refurbs as they might contain plum, black, hardwood upper or lower or laminate. Different color pistol grips etc. Maybe there was a criteria or cut off but dunno. I have owned or inspected perhaps 20 or so AK74 and AKS74 Bulgy kits., cannot say I saw a definite pattern.
Since they obtained much of their parts etc., from the USSR., it may follow that pattern somewhat??
http://www.theakforum.net/forums/29...k-74-production-modifications-edition-xv.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I posted this on AKFiles also... got some comments there. In the end, I guess it boils down to the fact that once the Bulgys opted for plum any rifle could have been retrofitted in plum. My problem is I have two beautiful 29 kits... one with the original barrel and the other with a virgin Bulgy barrel and both have marvelous wood. I was thinking about selling the barrel-less kit to fund a 30 or 31 with plum, but that may not really make sense given the circumstances.

Anyone know if any folders show up on rifles earlier than the 31 year code (1991 IIRC)?

 

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Here's a picture of my Bulgarian AK74 kit s/n AE 31 5XXX prior to me building it.


I think your theory of them going from wood to plum is incorrect. I've seen wood, painted brown wood and plastic stock sets all in the 29, 30 and 31 date range. They seem to have used whatever type of stock set they wanted to within that date range. I believe that the plum stock sets are all Russian sourced. The Bulgarians then started making their own black stock sets. The two Bulgarian AK74 kits that I have that came with plum buttstocks and handguards came with Bulgarian pinkish pistol grips or black pistol grips. They look odd, but they're correct.

Here's my Bulgarian after I built it. It has all matching serial numbers including the receiver.



Here's one of my plum stock set Bulgarian AK74 kits. The s/n is [email protected] 30 0XXX
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I think your theory of them going from wood to plum is incorrect. I've seen wood, painted brown wood and plastic stock sets all in the 29, 30 and 31 date range. They seem to have used whatever type of stock set they wanted to within that date range. I believe that the plum stock sets are all Russian sourced. The Bulgarians then started making their own black stock sets. The two Bulgarian AK74 kits that I have that came with plum buttstocks and handguards came with Bulgarian pinkish pistol grips or black pistol grips. They look odd, but they're correct.
You may be correct; my original conclusions dont seem to match what I have been able to find in the last few days either.

After posting my thoughts on the subject, I went and looked through old WTS posts and old auctions to find information on original barreled kits which might be able to be used to draw better conclusions. I was leery of relying on kits that come completely disassembled because it would be easy to swap bagged up furniture sets to meet a specific order for wood or plum without delivering parts original to the furniture (dont know if this is the way it works or not). That said, the original barreled kits often seem to come with the front end completely assembled; I am assuming that their current configurations are reliable proxies for the config as issued.

codeprefixserialmodelfurnitureintact barreled kitkit or built
294692AK74woodyeskit
296980AK74woodyeskit
29KP2549AK74woodnokit
29KP9078AK74woodnokit
30288AK74plumyeskit
301444AK74plumnokit
301589AK74woodyeskit
312648AK74woodyeskit
Even from this small sample size, it does not seem like it was as simple as I originally thought...
 

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Since many of the import kits appeared to ne refurbs it is hard to tell. Much like the Russian import AKM kits from Bulgaria.., parts were mixed by era, arsenal and type etc.
 
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