Last year, we checked out the first serious offering in the Ak12 Category, the LCT LCK-12/15. We loved the realism, weight, and performance of such a legendary rifle. Can Arcturus nail the mark with the AK12? We've reviewed a few Arcturus AR's in the past, and loved them, but can this AK stand the test? Let's take a look and see.
The AK12 by Arcturus features very similar internal components to the AR. As expected, these are very well built gearboxes. Arcturus has had a few AK models on the market already for a little while now. This AK12 shares all the same important bullet points. - Microswitch Trigger - Torque Motor - SHS Manufactured 18:1 Gears - 6.02mm Tight Bore Barrel
These are the same types of tent pole features are found in every other Arcturus gun, and we're glad they made the jump here. As with the last two rifles we've taken a look at, craftsmanship and build quality is exquisite. Admittedly, we had an expectation for this rifle, but it was met 100%.
Upgrading this gun should you ever desire to (and not that you'll need to) will be easy. Most of the parts are standard, with only the trigger being the odd part out. This gun scores high marks for internal quality.
Overall, performance was on par with the other Arcturus rifles. We had an average FPS of 390 on a .20g, as well as
Tactical AK's have existed for a while, that's not new, but the specific changes the AK12 makes bakes it directly into the design of the rifle. Every inch of this is innovation through iteration, taking proven mechanics that have been added aftermarket to AK's since picatinny rail was invented, and making them a core part of the design, instead of an extra part you have to add aftermarket.
This starts with the revamped dust cover. Instead of using a slick dust cover, and attaching a mount to the side to hover some questionably stable rail piece over the gearbox, the AK12 uses a rail built into the dust cover. The way the dust cover mounts is even more secure than before, to ensure your optics hold their zero better. A smartly designed detented take down lever forward of the dust cover allows you to remove it for battery installation.
The handguard is engulfed in rail space for lights lasers and grips. Even though it still has a traditional shape, we didn't run into any struggles attaching accessories like we have with other AK handguards in the past. Everything was smooth sailing, and getting this gun kitted out was a breeze.
The last two major changes occur in the rear of the gun. First, the new rear sight design, while not a drastic change, does improve usability of the AK overall. With a longer sight radius, and a ghost ring style aperture, it is much easier to use. Coupled with the new folding AND telescoping stock (instead of choosing one or the other ) this rifle becomes much more versatile for close quarters, despite it's overall long barrel length.
This Arcturus AK12 retails for $345 on Airsoft GI. It has a ton of pro's, including a lightweight receiver, ergonomic features, and killer performance. The only real downside is how tricky getting the dust cover out can be, if it decides it wants to fight with you. It's a little front heavy, but not at deal breaker. We're going to throw this in the "Must Buy" Column!