The Enemy Within: Stag Arms 7.62x39mm AR Carbine — NRA 2016

The new AR from Stag Arms in 7.62x39mm offers the familiar handling characteristics of an M4 Carbine-style rifle with the punch and power of the Soviet-designed cartridge.

The new AR from Stag Arms in 7.62x39mm offers the familiar handling characteristics of an M4 Carbine-style rifle with the punch and power of the Soviet-designed cartridge.

For a lot of shooters, the Holy Grail of tactical firearms is some sort of hybrid AR/AK design. While many have tried combining the two designs in a variety of ways to combine the appealing handling characteristics of the AR and the rugged reliability of the AK, Stag Arms has taken a bit of a different tack with its new 7.62x39mm AR.

The dead giveaway to the unique nature of the new Stag Arms carbine is the sharply curved magazine, which is necessary to accommodate the shape of the 7.62x39mm cartridge.

The dead giveaway to the unique nature of the new Stag Arms carbine is the sharply curved magazine, which is necessary to accommodate the shape of the 7.62x39mm cartridge.

Shown at the NRA Annual Meeting 2016 in Louisville, Kentucky, the new rifle takes the simple yet appealing approach of chambering an M4 Carbine-pattern gun in the hard-hitting 7.62x39mm Soviet cartridge. Operationally, the new gun works exactly like any other standard direct gas impingement AR. The biggest change visually is the uniquely curved ASC-manufactured magazine that accommodates the sharper case body angle of the 7.62x39mm cartridge (as compared to that of the 5.56mm).

The new Stag Arms carbine employs an ASC magazine designed specifically to function with the 7.62x39mm cartridge.

The new Stag Arms carbine employs an ASC magazine designed specifically to function with the 7.62x39mm cartridge.

Apart from the chambering and the magazine design, the new carbine is all AR. It has all the features you would expect in an M4 Carbine-style firearm, including an integral Picatinny rail strip atop the flattop upper receiver. An A2-style muzzle brake tops off the 16.5-inch barrel, and all the controls are exactly where you would expect to find them.

The new Stag Arms gun features a strip of integral Picatinny rail atop the upper receiver, making the use of optics a breeze.

The new Stag Arms gun features a strip of integral Picatinny rail atop the upper receiver, making the use of optics a breeze.

To find out more about this firearm, keep an eye out at

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{ 27 comments… add one }
  • Darren Henry May 29, 2016, 2:51 pm

    I have a Rugger Mini 30, shoots 7.62 x 39 & a Chines SKS also shooting the same round. I’ve always liked having two rifles shooting the same round, it’s a two birds one stones literally ( two rifles, one type of ammo ). I’ve been wanting to get an AR for years now but want it to shoot the same round as my other two rifles. Any advise on Make / Model of a top quality AR Rifle shooting the 7.62 x 39 round? Thank you in advance for the feed back.

    • Pat May 8, 2017, 5:58 pm

      I had two of palmetto uppers in 7.62×39. both where accurate and very dependable. Accurate(as in using .308 bullets ,getting 1 1/2 groups at 100 yards and using .310 bullets under an inch at 100 yards. I sold one to a friend and brought the same thing from classic arms. it was free of FTF’s and FTE’s. I sold it, and ordered another one. These things are awesome. and accurate. the one from classics arms is from Bear Creek something. my first one ran find.(after I cleaned it up and oiled it a lot. these things like to be “wet” Mobil 1 works real good with AR uppers. I brought spare bolts for the palmetto arms uppers and after about 4,000 rounds through one of them I haven’t had to use the spare bolt yet! Ok I reload all my ammo and pour bullet for them too. the 7.62×39 are getting to be pretty accurate with pure lead bullets with gas checks. there are many different powders that you can use with these uppers. (i’m too cheap to buy the right jacketed bullets for them., so I shoot lead. now I’m powder coating the bullets. they are so far working great,(as in accurate and speed.( 2300 fps with one powder coated bullet with good accuracy.)

  • John May 28, 2016, 12:27 pm

    Hmm I’ll keep the 6.8. Better than bothe the cartridges being mentioned.

    • Pat May 8, 2017, 6:02 pm

      I also like the 6.8SPC a lot. but I can’t get them(ok, I have three uppers) to shoot lead bullets even with gas checks very accurately. yes. it’s a very accurate round with the right bullets and I’ve had no troubles with FTF or FTEs with any of my uppers. but I’m doing lead and I cna’t get them to shoot lead bullets.

    • Tim Brock February 18, 2018, 6:19 pm

      I didn’t know 6.8 ammo was down to $5 / box ….. like 7.62×39…. better ?!? I guess that depends on what your after.

  • BJG May 24, 2016, 5:59 pm

    All these comments about .300 Blk.Out being too expensive, doesn’t anyone reload. Even cast bullets will work. ( don’t give me the cast bullets lead. If you know how to load them you can reach 2500fps with out leading.

  • Hollow May 23, 2016, 5:20 pm

    So this is essentially what everyone already knew and has done before. Including the 10 I have built for people over the last several years. Why does this non groundbreaking firearm even deserve an article! I mean we already knew asc was the go to mag for ARs chambered in this caliber.

  • Joe May 23, 2016, 3:22 pm

    I have a Colt in the 7.62×39 and it shoots great. Never had an issue with magazines or jams.

  • Brandon May 23, 2016, 10:53 am

    If they were after the rugged reliability of the AK, they completely missed the mark when they built it around direct impingement. The reason why AK’s are so reliable is the long stoke piston system. This is nothing more than a gimmick gun.

  • steve May 23, 2016, 10:35 am

    OLYMPIC ARMS > have been making them for almost 10 years …..Mine is 100% reliable with either Ruski TulAmmo or USA ball or my A-max hand loads…cheers

  • WIscoGunner May 23, 2016, 10:06 am

    That receiver is the exact same one used by Radical Firearms for their AR 7.62x.39 for $499. The differences I see are that Stag puts a plastic hand guard up front where Radical has an 12″ Aluminum one. The barrel on the Stag is the standard lite/sporter style where the Radical barrel is basically a semi-heavy barrel. Both have the adjustable stock. Wonder what Stag is charging for this? I think for the money, Radical gives you a bit more for probably less $. Just my 2-cents.

    • beav May 23, 2016, 8:51 pm

      that upper looks just like the the one i bought from sportsman guild. that one is a windham weaponry that runs great with any type ammo and the same mag , asc .

  • MB May 23, 2016, 8:25 am

    I don’t get the 7.62×39 to AR conversion, when 300AAC is available. I think it’s the worst of both worlds, direct impingement and dirty ammo. I would rather have a AK in 5.56, if you SHTF wanted reliability and ammo availability, or just AK/7.62×39
    I have both AR and AK, both have their pluses and minuses. I have no preference, it’s a tool like a hammer, I light cabinet makers hammer or a carpenters framing hammer…

    • Kivaari May 23, 2016, 10:24 am

      DI systems work. Yep, crude ammo is dirty. I have shot clean AK ammo made in Finland and handloads. The most accurate military and most consistent ammo I used was steel core Chinese.

    • steve May 23, 2016, 10:34 am

      NEGATIVE > As an “owner” of the hybrid after 4 years and thousands of rounds of both cheep Ruski TulAmmo and expensive USA factory ammo my heavy barrel Olympic Arms AR-7.62×39 has ALWAYS proven its self 100% reliable , when it was factory as issued stock or now days that it is highly modified, and the ASC magazines are the same = totally reliable…..1) Cheep ( reliable ) ammo option……..2) Powerful hollow point & soft point cartridge for killing hordes of crystal meth zombies….. 3) AR ergonomics, up grade furniture and fire controls …..4) Scope or red dot & tac light ready,…… 5) 1/4 MOA accurate…..6) Deer killer…….cheers

    • Kenneth Tomas May 23, 2016, 12:23 pm

      It is simple 7.62 x 39 is very inexpensive and until the 300 Blackout becomes more popular it’s the kind of ammunition that Boeing engineers airline pilots and cats like that can afford. A guy who hangs drywall or an electrician they can afford 7.62 x 39 all day . Don’t get me wrong I think 300 black there’s a great round just too much money.

      • chris pham May 24, 2016, 7:10 am

        i am agree with you , 300 black out ..are way more $ to shoot , i own my self 3 uppers 7.62 39 (7.5 ,10.5 and 16 ),all radical arm they are great and cheap to shoot tulammo i have 1 lower from spike tactical no issue or problem for over 3 year of shooting ,afforable

    • Jake May 24, 2016, 10:31 am

      The 300 Blackout is a joke. It is an expensive way to turn an AR into an M1 Carbine. The M43 AK round is much more powerful. The highly overlooked Wilson 7.62 x40 based on the 5.56 case is the real deal but no one seems interested.
      I have Colt HBAR pre-ban flat top uppers (16″ and 20″) in 7.62×39 which I mix and match with various lowers to suit my desires at the time. They are tack driving accurate with quality ammo. I only use western made brass ammo in them. The C Products mags work great and I have had no issues with the old USA “frankenmags” either.
      I would not want to be a guy throwing 62 grain pills @ 2,600 fps from an M-4 taking 124 grain .30’s @2,400-2,500+ in return.
      I will also comment that there is nothing wrong with direct impingement assuming proper placement of the gas block. Virtually every problem anyone dreamed of with the AR platform was due to the magazines which was fixed the day Magpul showed up. Using the mid-length or rifle length placement of the gas block eliminates the bolt overheating caused by the stupid placement of the gas block on the M-4 which also causes the bolt speed to increase by fully 50% over the rifle length placement. If for some reason one must have the short gas block then they would be better off with the other system. It would be nice if there were a standardized non impingement system. Another reason to avoid it if you think you might need to find parts in an adverse environment.

      • Army127 May 25, 2016, 4:13 am

        Just run mid length DI in an M4 and use a quality adjustable gas block so you can tune your rifle to whatever ammo you happen to want to put through it. Not really a big deal, and the carbine length was set up and is used for automatic fire which is why it doesn’t work well in civilian AR’s. Although I still use the above for builds of that nature again so the operator can tune the rifle to their preference. As for .300AAC/BLKOUT it’s junk after 200yds drops off like a boulder off a cliff! It was designed for SOCOM as a CQ round to use suppressed that was a one hit and split round copy. Also the 62 gr. 5.56 isn’t the only round used by us. Look up Mk262 5.56 77gr OTM, the 64gr SPS, 69 gr. OTM. So there is why I recommend the mid length system with an adjustable gas block, copy.

        SSG G. O.
        USAR MED RET


  • Hunter May 23, 2016, 7:27 am

    Nothing new, I’ve built two of these in the last two years. The mags have been around awhile.its nice to see one you can buy already together. ammo is cheap.

  • Rob May 23, 2016, 6:21 am

    While I understand the usefulness of the AK, and the ammo being low priced, I still would opt for an AR-10. The 7.62X39 is nothing more than a glorified 30-30 Winchester round and a bit underpowered at over 100 yards, especially when compared to the 7.62X51. Just my 2 cents, and that’s about all it’s worth.

    • Cyrus May 23, 2016, 7:19 am

      . . . well said!

    • William C May 23, 2016, 10:37 am

      I agree 100%

    • Mike Dolqueist March 20, 2017, 6:54 am

      A 16″ AR in .308 has about the same velocity as the Russian round but cost big money and has huge fire ball of unburned powder, for tactical rifle 7.62×39 is way to go. Plus 500 round for $110 and no reloading.
      Now the .300 BLK just sucks for reloading and shooting… no good bullets and velocity is week less power than 30_30. Good tin can plinker though.

  • Mike Owen May 23, 2016, 3:21 am

    Taking special magazines is the biggest deal breaker for me. Lot of money for a SHTF class rifle.

    • Jake May 24, 2016, 10:50 am

      CMMG and Rock River make AR’s in 7.62×39 which use AK Mags. SIG makes the 556R, which uses AK mags. That makes life a lot simpler. The 556R is what an AK looks like when made in Switzerland.

  • Mike May 22, 2016, 5:34 pm

    Nice looking rifle. I forgot how clean an AR can look when it doesn’t have a box full of ‘attachments’ bolted onto it. I’m looking forward to hearing more about this rifle works in the real world.

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