In association with Cheaper Than Dirt!, the Gun Tests/GunReports.com team shoots a quartet of high-cap shotguns, with surprising results. The head-to-head findings detailed in the video below compare a Saiga 12-gauge autoloader, the Kel-Tec KSG pumpgun, a Red Jacket Saiga Conversion, and the Akdal Arms MKA1919 autoloader with an AR-15 design.
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Thanks for the informative short video. I was looking forward to the new KSG but after seeing this I will not be purchasing one. Shame on you kel-tec for producing junk like that.
Interesting, I’ve seen reveiws by actual owners, not shop jockys, and pretty much all agree that the various platforms are all good, but ALL need to be tuned. The Saiga is my favorite as an owner, but I have NEVER heard a good review of that 30 rnd drum. Most end up as door stops.
Keep it real! It’s like a clinical trial, works for a large percentage of the population but for a unlucky few your arms and legs fall off. Producing a large number of firearms has it’s problems, the real test comes in the customers hands, issues come up that need more R&D. Problems with firearms show up on rentals at the range, if it works there you can bet it will work in the real world. Thank you Kel-Tek and other forward thinking firearm manufacturer. Now fix it!
I have the Saiga and it works fine with my 20 round drums. I changed the gas system and it will shoot anything. My wife has a Mossberg 930 SPX that also will shoot anything you feed it. On the Kel-Tec I have seen videos where the attached hand grip will break the off the plastic charging handle. It looks very cool but has a lot of real world problems.
You are supposed to break in the MKA 1919 with high brass shells. Those target loads you were using aren’t really working the action enough to break it in adequately. Try you some 3″ in there and see if you get miss feeds.
“Remember that the shotgun functions by the use of kinetic energy generated by the recoil. Therefore, one must always use ammunition that is strong enough to fully cycle the action. The MKA 1919 shotgun may require a breaking in period before it will function using light loads. If you experience any initial functioning problems, we recommend firing 3-4 boxes of standard hunting cartridges”
honest report. i like that. i still find the classics as the best. i have a WW1 trench shot gun and it works great! it has a disconnect trigger assembly. what that means: leave your finger depress on the trigger and pump as fast as you can. it feels like an auto with no stove pipes or hang ups. great gun.
I would agree that mass production has it’s issues with QC however, it shouldn’t have gone this bad unless some of those guns were inferior designs to begin with. I have seen those 1919, and it just feels like a toy. On top of that it is designed off the 1100 series Remington. It just looks cool. Those KELTEC guns all feel cheap as well. That red jacket only shows that while they make a good TV show, they still can’t build a good Saiga.
I built my saiga 12 myself. Cleaned up the rails, and bolt, redid the gas port and plug. I do have some experience doing so, and haven’t had an issue with it!!!
Comment by kendrickmeadows — June 3, 2012 @ 10:47 am
Nothing personal but why would you want any of these unless you are into expensive range toys or a combat soldier. The AA12 and others seem to be better for the police or soldier in combat. As a civilian now, I can’t imagine a senario that would call for any of these. I will stick to my keep it simple 870 magnum. Maybe I am just getting old but unless you work out all the time those 12 ga shells are going to be very heavy.
I own a KelTec KSG and I have NEVER had this problem.
Mine shoots, ejects, feeds, and loads great.
I will admit that I do need to “pump with some authority” but never like they are showing.
I only use 2 3/4″ shells in mine.
I will admit that you can have ejection and double feed issues if you don’t get the pump all the way to the rear.
When you think the pump is all the way back, there is another 1/4″ to go and that 1/4″ is what activates the stops for each mag. and if you don’t jack the pump smartly, it can double feed.
Mostly, it’s a matter of learning a different operation, not necessarily, a faulty weapon.
As I said, mine functions perfectly and I love it.
I also own a KSG and have found it to be magnificent since I purchased it in January. I do not find the pump action difficult to operate. My pump has been smooth since day 1. Also, my KSG has loaded, fired and ejected every single type of shell that I have put in it. I have never had a failure to eject, jam or double feed. I will say that I have never tried any shells other than 2 3/4″, but I have fired 1oz slugs, #7 and #4 birdshot, 00 buckshot, Winchester PDX1, Remington Ultimate HD and others with zero issues. Most every new gun design produced have some that experience problems, but isolated issues of a design does not make a poor firearm. There are many great shotgun alternatives to the KSG which have proven track records, but based on my personal experience, I would recommend that those of you who have never fired a KSG reserve your judgement until you have. It it awesome and a lot of fun. I actually sold my Benelli M4 after I became comfortable with my KSG.
When you buy Red Jacket, you buy a name, and the TV show hype that goes with that name, silly show, overpriced weapons, reliability issues? Really? Trying to get 3000 dollar shotguns out the door ASAP, and quality goes out the door? Hmmmm.
Kel Tec? The RFB was a hideous CHUD, poor ergonomics, cheap construction, and this looks like CHUD, the sequel. Having had three different KT products all succumb to bad triggers, why am I not surprised.
The MKA, trying to jump on the Saiga Band Wagon, a new system that has to suck up to AR types, instead of being designed around the gun, they built the gun around the design, probably not a good start, no aftermarket mags yet, appears to be complex compared to the SAIGA simplistic AK’ish ness.
The Saiga, I own 3, a 2004 production 12 gauge, same era 410, both run and work fine with every mag I have put in them, I am ordering a 30 round promag for the 410, just because, and their 12 round drums are the SHIZ NIT, for the 12 gauge models, in terms of size and capacity, I will probably be only buying the 12 round drums from now on, though I own many 10 round sticks, and an MD20, but it is SO Huge, its just not practical, except for a movie shoot, or to prove your penis size, or lack of.
I just bought a new 12, converted, and the gas block was so canted I had to pull it, and open up the hole in the block to get all four ports open, its running fine on high brass, less than 100 shots so far, and will not fire federal el cheapo yet, but I know I have to break it in, I may also try smoothing up the bolt, extractor seat Etc.
There is only ONE choice right now, for a good semi auto platform, and thats the Saiga, as for the KT, plastic, overpriced junk, my dealer cost is 539.00, and at that price, I would buy a new 870 in cop drag, before I would waste it on a plastic, POS.
Comment by Davidio Flavio — June 3, 2012 @ 7:58 pm
I’ll take you 870. Last time some one put a shot time on me I was getting 5 aimed shots off in 3 seconds. The best part is I’ve never had a miss fire, fail to feed, fail to extract or fail to eject. I know when I pull that trigger its going to go bang and that It’s going to cycle when I pump it. My Uncles all ways told me “If is aint broke don’t fix it.”
Fantastic review! It is amazing refreshing to see a gun review that that doesn’t blatantly attempt to cover up issues with a firearm. Let the manufacturers know what the issues with their products may be so they can fix those problems and give us the functional, reliable products they want to deliver.
My old shop teacher once said something about KISS: Keep It Simple, Stupid. The Russians have known that for a while, it shows with their factory model Saiga. Too bad they didn’t test a UTS-15 though, I’m still curious about those, being based on Neosted and all.
at least the saiga worked flaw less exept w-30 rd, drum that things to big. im gonna buil saiga w-18 in. barrel w-muzzle brake and folding stock and a red dot and tac-light and sling . really be sweet with 10in. barrel but not going there to much paper work.
Seems to me these gun manufacturers are going the ‘Microsoft’ way of manufacturing, and letting their customers do the ‘debugging’ and what is supposed to be pre-release quality control testing. It might be ok for Microsoft when your life doesn’t depend on what you’re doing, but in this industry, they are just asking for lawsuits putting out junk like this without making sure it works flawlessly. I used to own a firearms store, and when I purchased firearms like this and sold them to customers, if they had this many problems (multiple and ongoing) with them, I would refund their money, take my plasma cutter and cut the gun up, post the pics on the store’s website, along with the details of what went wrong, and then boycott the manufacturer by never buying another firearm from them again. I can only hope other store owners have the same sense of responsibility instead of just wanting to sell junk at any cost to ‘make a buck’ just because the guns look ‘cool’. It’s a disgrace to the industry and does nothing but put peoples lives in danger.
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As for the review, I have been drooling over the Kel-Tec KSG but my THREE Mossbergs will do just fine (two in the house — next to my bed and near the door — plus one in my truck). Best, most reliable and most reasonably priced Home Defense shotgun out there. And a shotgun is the best, safest and most effective (massive stopping power) Home/Personal defense weapon if you train and learn to use it right.
Comment by Bob Riordan — October 6, 2012 @ 1:29 pm
Best shotgun ever is a Winchester 1200 8-shot. I made a sling clamp toward the muzzle and added some port work. It will eject a round on its own if fired one handed and is so fast it makes autos look slow.
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