The Colt CK901: The Mystery Colt of Yemen

ABOVE: The author firing a full auto burst with the Colt CK901. Notice the four fired cartridge cases ejecting from the rifle and how flat the muzzle is. Very little recoil compared to a standard AKM.

The industry does have its share of “ghost guns”, or guns they get a slight glimpse at but never much info at all. Some of these guns are the industry’s best kept secrets. The Colt CK901 fits right into that role. One picture leaked out on the internet of a writer shooting a strange looking rifle with an AK-type magazine at the Colt research and development range. The groups on the web speculated what it was.

The CK901 or the Colt Kalashnikov 901 was designed specifically for one customer, which was the Yemeni Republican guard. They have large existing stocks of AK47/AKM rifles and wanted a better rifle, one that they could use their existing ammo and magazines in. In the 1990’s, Colt introduced a Colt Sporter rifle chambered in 7.62x39mm. This was to offer a rifle capable of hunting medium game such as deer but also to take advantage of the large influx of inexpensive 7.62x39mm ammunition. All good in theory and from a marketing standpoint but there was one giant hiccup; the magazine.

The Colt CK901 is the newest development by Colt. Notice the AK magazine as well as the Colt monolithic receiver. The rifle uses the VLTOR Modstock.

The AR magazine well is straight for several inches. The 7.62x39mm cartridge case has a severe taper compared to that of the 5.56x45mm cartridge. This caused severe stacking issues in the magazines. Colt sold the rifle and conversion uppers with straight magazines based off of their 20 round 5.56mm magazine. Put 5 rounds in and the rifle was moderately reliable. The aftermarket companies started making 30 round …read more

Read more here:: Small Arms Defense Journal (Land)

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