Want to make your AK-47 even better?
We’ve tried a lot of the stuff out there and here are our favorite AK-47 upgrades that span everything from furniture to optics mounting, triggers, and muzzle devices.
By the end you’ll know exactly what you need to make your AK the best suited for your task.
Table of Contents
1. AK Scope Rails
One of the biggies…you can finally mount some optics and scopes to your AK. If you have a side scope mount…
We like Midwest for all their AK stuff (and their AR-15 Handguards). There’s a couple different options.
Midwest Industries AK Railed Scope Mount
The Midwest Industries Rail is the most versatile mount since it gives you Picatinny rails on the top.
Very secure and adjustable quick detach method…although my recommendation is to really read the instructions. You don’t want it TOO tight and the disengagement system is a little hard to figure out initially.
So far so good with the zero when taking it on and off to access the internals…at least with a red dot.
Midwest Industries AK 30MM Side Mount
If you’re rocking a 30mm red dot like our favorite Aimpoint Pro (full review)…you can skip some weight of a Picatinny rail.
Midwest Industries AK 30mm Scope Mount
And…if you’re going with a low power scope (Best 1-6x Scopes) that uses 30mm rings…you can get Midwest’s Scope Mount.
Again…saves weight from the Picatinny option and lowers the optic for an easier cheekweld.
Prices accurate at time of writing
Disclaimer…I haven’t tried this out but I know some of you out there are looking for more budget options that have decent reviews.
2. Gas Tube Optics Mounts
I’ve used the option of replacing the gas tube with a mount the longest.
It holds zero very well but does heat up the optic so you’ll have to either shoot slowly (boooo) or opt for a good optic like the Aimpoint H-1 I have above (Best Red Dots).
It also places the optic a little farther up which gives you a great field of view but makes it a little harder to acquire the dot. No problem if you have a proper cheekweld though.
Ultimak AK Optic Mount
Ultimak’s version is the gold standard and has worked for 5+ years for me.
Midwest Industries AK Gas Block Mount
Midwest has come out with their version which features an adjustable nut that makes install really easy. I’m testing out mine so I’ll update…but so far so good.
The OG versions work well…and there’s those that find anything but the regular wood furniture is blasphemy.
But I love my polymer furniture!
Magpul AK Handguard
Proper length, gives you access to M-LOK, and holds up to the heat.
Midwest Industries Railed Handguard
Another few options from Midwest to give you rail access up front while giving your AK a more updated look.
Or if you don’t need quadrails…go for the M-LOK option.
There’s nothing wrong with the original…but I really like Magpul’s Zhukov.
It is length adjustable AND foldable. And with a robust attachment system (make sure to follow the instructions).
Plus it looks super cool when combo-ed with the Magpul handguard since I think the Zhukov front (above) is too long.
My favorite stock right now.
And if you’re in love with a specific AR-15 stock (Best AR-15 Stocks)…you can get an adapter.
Here’s our go-to…
5. Pistol Grip
I haven’t tried out too many pistol grips for the AK…but it’s pretty similar to AR-15s.
Magpul MOE AK Grip
The keep-it-simple-stupid grip that gets rid of finger grooves.
Hogue AK Grip
If you like the best grip with a rubbery texture…I suggest the Hogue.
Strike Industries Featureless AK Grip
And if you’re in a restricted state…
6. AK Magazines
I love the old Bulgarian mags for but for new generation polymer magazines I like Magpul’s Gen 3 versions.
8. Smaller Parts
If you take apart the internals or swap out a trigger…I really like swapping out the pins with a one-piece retaining plate.
It’s cheap and keeps everything together.
AK Safety Latch
Finally gives you bolt hold open capability!
9. AK Muzzle Devices
The AK-47 kicks more than the AR-15…and though the slant brake is ok…it can always be better.
I like the PWS since I’ve run an older version the longest…
It tames the recoil and muzzle rise very well.
Need a flash hider? There’s not too many choices out there but I like AAC’s which utilizes the tried and true triple prong.
Or how about a compensator that pushes the blast forward…especially good if you have teammates and a shorter barrel. Your range friends will thank you too.
We end with a super important upgrade…the trigger.
Getting a better trigger (especially on an AK) is probably the best bang-for-the-buck upgrade for immediate accuracy results.
For mine…the ALG AK Trigger brought down my AK trigger to 3 lb 1 oz and reduced the post and pre travel. Amazing!
Plus, it’s not that big of a pain to install.
What’s your take on the ALG?
Another option which yields a better overall trigger pull…but at a much higher expense and potentially a much harder install (depending on your gun).
There you have it…our best AK-47 upgrades with a couple of choices each.
Whether you want to mount an optic affordably…or fully trick out your AK to bring it to the 21st century…there’s an upgrade for it.
Anything else you’d add onto the list…or how have these upgrades affected your rifle’s performance? And…if you’re looking at a new (or first) AK purchase…check out our Best AK-47 post.
Or now that you’ve got an optic mount…check out our Best AR-15 Optics (since they are pretty much the same for AKs)