Polish Tantal: Whats the story??

Discussion in 'AK-47 Talk' started by xjedix, Jan 21, 2009.

  1. xjedix

    xjedix XDTalk 500 Member

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    I am in the market for a new AK and came across the 5.45x39 Polish Tantal's for $500. What is the deal with these things, are they any good?? Any owner/ user reviews would be great.

    [​IMG]

    -Derek
     
  2. cooks128

    cooks128 XDTalk 4K Member Founding Member

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    Polish AKs and variants are quality AKs, the tantal shoots the 5.45x39 rather then the 7.62x39 as standard AKs shoot and many do not have chrome lined barrels. Many AK purist prefer the AKs chambered in 7.62 and tend to shy away from anything but the standard round. Another is the stock, the wire folder takes some getting used to.
    I have considered an Tantal but do not want to invest in new mags as I have a decent supply of of 7.62 mags so I've never picked one up.
     
  3. nalioth

    nalioth XDTalk 2K Member

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    To be honest, the 5.45x39 has been the "standard round" since 1974. It does the job it was designed to do.

    The Poles make some of the highest quality guns out there. While the Tantal you get may not be of the highest quality //waves to the pols who came up with the 922r//, the Polish parts in it are of the highest quality.
     
  4. einheit 13

    einheit 13 XDTalk 5K Member Founding Member

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    like nalioth said..AK-47s are 7.62, AK-74s are 5,45. AK-100 series come in 7.62, 5,45, and 5.56...all AK-100s are based on the AK-74 upgrades.
     
  5. WitchingHour

    WitchingHour XDTalk 500 Member

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    All Polish AK variants are referred to as Tantal, whether chambered in 7.62x39, 5.45x39.5, or the current model adopted for NATO integration, in 5.56x45.
     
  6. cooks128

    cooks128 XDTalk 4K Member Founding Member

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    my mistake...I've only come across the 5.45s Tantals....I didn't realize all Polish AK variants are refered to as Tantals.
     
  7. WitchingHour

    WitchingHour XDTalk 500 Member

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    Actually, I was wrong. The current 5.56 rifle is referred to as the Beryl.
     
  8. nalioth

    nalioth XDTalk 2K Member

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    Only the wz88 rifle (5.45x39) is referred to as the "Tantal".

    The 7.62x39 Polish AKs are known by their acronyms.

    The wz96 rifle (5.56x45) is known as the "Beryl".
     
  9. ultra_magnus

    ultra_magnus XDTalk 100 Member

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    Most these tantals are noy chrome lined. Is it a big deal? Does chrome add more life to a barrel? Or does it only help with corrosive ammos?

    I thought i heard someone mention that all 5.45 military ammo is mildly corrosive too.

    Thoughts?
     
  10. WitchingHour

    WitchingHour XDTalk 500 Member

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    Most of your Russian brands are non-corrosive. Wolf, Brown Bear, Golden Bear, etc.
    The chrome lining reduces barrel wear, and helps prevent fouling of the chamber. Doesn't matter if the ammo is corrosive or not.
    As for the designations, there's so many AKM variants out there, it's easy to forget which ones are named for manufacturers, which ones have distinctive nomenclatures for each variant, etc.
     
  11. ah8176

    ah8176 XDTalk 500 Member

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    Like everyone said, the wz88 or "Tantal" is a Polish built AK variant. I've never had the opportunity to shoot one, so if anyone has, please let me know.
    I've heard that it's among one of the top AK variants in terms of quality, but since I've never owned one, or examined one, I wouldn't know for sure.
    Here's an interesting article about them on wikipedia, but we all know wikipedia isn't the most accurate authority on firearms. Luckily, we have einheit 13. :D He can probably answer anything about AK's.
    Kbk wz. 1988 Tantal - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
  12. xjedix

    xjedix XDTalk 500 Member

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    Well its basically between a Polish Tantal for $500 or step into a full on AK74 AZEX build for $1,000. :shock:


    [​IMG]
     
  13. Brickboy240

    Brickboy240 XDTalk 25K Member

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    I did alot of reading and research on various AK websites and other gun reviews on the AK variants that they are calling the "Tantal" right now. I too was interested since they looked so good and you always hear good things about Polish guns in general.

    From what I gleaned....these are put together by Century or some other assembler in the US of Polish parts that ARE high quality. However, there are reports of keyholing and inaccuracy. Some posters on AK boards say that the barrels used on these assamblies, has an oversized bore and is a US made barrel that is out of spec.

    There are many posts (not just a few picky sorts that ***** about everything) on the AK forums, that report keyholing and very bad accuracy. Some have mic'ed the bores on their Tantals and have found oversized bores....this explains the inaccuracy.

    Like everything Century imports in parts and assembles with US compliant parts...its a crapshoot. I am sure someone has a Tantal that gives them 1" groups...out there somewhere.

    But....only going by what I read...the Tantals are very spotty on accuracy and ARE made of quality parts but with oversized barrels and the assembly quality was hit and miss.

    I wanted one...until I read all of this over and over again on various AK web forums. Do your research and read up....you may or may not find the Tantal worth gambling on. I am NOT some sort of AK expert or guru - I can only tell you what I found out there on the Tantal.

    - Brickboy240
     
  14. nalioth

    nalioth XDTalk 2K Member

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    Most of what you read on the interwebs is produced by basement dwellers repeating what some halfwit mall ninja said first.

    Century is not the only manufacturer producing these. Some of the smaller jobbers use the Polish barrel.

    The 'keyholing' issue you are hearing about is mostly from the mall ninjas who (try to) sight their rifle in at 25 yards. The 5.45x39 doesn't stabilize until farther than that. I have built unissued Bulgarian AK74 kits (with the unissued Bulgarian barrel) and at 25 yards, it keyholes every time. Move out to 100 yards and you get the .21 caliber holes you're looking for.
     
  15. Sleepr awd

    Sleepr awd XDTalk 500 Member

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    keyholing also had to do with early models of that produced by century using the green mountain barrels that were actually 5.56 barrels, not 5.45. einheit could elaborate i'm sure.

    i bought a tantal kit from copes distributing, and it's being put together for me. cost me about 550 and i'm keeping the chrome-lined polish barrel and brake. US parts came out to be: the receiver, handguard/gas-tube cover, 3 piece trigger group and pistol grip.

    Of course, a lot of the 5.45 surplus i saw floating around has disappeared in the obama-frenzy
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2009
  16. einheit 13

    einheit 13 XDTalk 5K Member Founding Member

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    Yep, and some call the mossberg barrels. They also had issues with some 'low bid' contract builders drill the gas port hole at a 45 like the Romanians-this shears the jacket in the 5,45 round. When it was switched to a 90* port, the shearing stopped. As for the key holing issues, take off the brake and give it about 100 rds..it will stop...
     
  17. blefferd

    blefferd XDTalk 2K Member

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    I have a Century build Polish Tantal, no issues with it what so ever. im sure they are hit or miss though like most century guns.

    not a bad firearm at all. built off a DCI receiver with left side auto "selector" markings, which actually functions as the saftey if you have hulk thumbs to actuate it.

    High Standard is building the Tantal rifle to. High Standard and a few other US builders.

    nice thing about them is the folding stock that is installed is the same trunion as a fixed stock so a quick change to a fixed stock is very easy.
    here are a few pics of mine

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Personally if i had a choice between the AK-74 and the Polish Tantal i would take the 74. there are a few slight variations to the Tantal that are not standard to a regular AK style rifles. both are very fine rifles though, and i would think it would have to come down to if the tantal had a US barrel or not ( you can tell by the number of rifling's in the barrel), and the price.
     
  18. JordanEMTP

    JordanEMTP XDTalk Newbie

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    I bought a Century Arms Tantal back in June of 2009. I got it from a local pawn shop where it was on a rack with roughly 10 Romanian AK-47s. I knew nothing about the Tantal at that time, but I knew that 5.45x39mm was WAY cheaper than 5.56, so I picked it up. Before shooting it I scrapped the folding stock and put on a black Tapco fixed stock. The wire stock is well built, but it's terrible for cheek weld.
    The first few mags through the rifle had multiple FTFs due to light primer hits. Closer inspection revealed a burr on the firing pin which was polished off. Since that day it has gone bang everytime the trigger is pulled. The only ammo I use is 1980s manufacture Bulgarian surplus.
    This Tantal happens to be one that is extremely accurate. I can shoot 1" 5 shot groups at 100yds. and 1" 10 shot groups at 50yds. all day long with surplus ammo.
    I've only had issues with keyholes once, and that was attributed to crap Monarch ammo from Academy.
    At this time, the only modification to my rifle is the Tapco fixed stock. In the near future it will have a Generation 2 Lightning Bolt from Colorado Shooting sports and a Midwest Industries optic specific rail with a Trijicon RMR.

    Tantals are great weapons. Get one and get shooting.
     
  19. daisychain11B

    daisychain11B XDTalk 100 Member

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    http://www.xdtalk.com/forums/ak-47-talk/182178-ak-74-where-you-2.html

    Here's a link to a post where I show off my CAI Tantal. Shot mine plenty and haven't had any issues. It's like any other century firearm, research known problems and then select "pick of the litter" by filtering out concerns. I've used this method for several century purchases and haven't gone wrong yet. I paid $409 for mine.
     
  20. Stogies

    Stogies XDTalk 1K Member

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    Unless you plan to only shoot corrosive ammo and a lot of it you don't really NEED a chrome lined barrel.
     

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