Добар дан! – that means “Good afternoon!” in Serbian. “Serbian??? But it looks like a Russian AK?” – I already hear someone typing this comment into his keyboard. No, it’s not an russian AK – this is an AEG that has never been made before.
Du suchst nach der deutschen Version dieses Reviews? Klick hier.
Table of Contents:
- The Box, Build Quality, Details
- Battery Space? Tight!
- Compatibility with oder AKs
- A Look inside the Gearbox
- Chrono & ROF Test
- Bottom Line
- Detailed Photos
What at first sight looks like a Russian AKMS is a M70AB2 from the Serbian arms manufacturer “Zastava Oružje AD” or also known as “Zastava Arms”. The M70 is the most used AK variant of the Kosovo War.
How to tell if it is a M70? It’s quite easy: the most prominent features of a M70 are the three holes in the handguard and the flip-up rifle grenade sight located on the gas block.
Besides the M70AB2 with its underfolding stock there are various other variants like the M72, a light machine gun like the russian RPK and the M92, a short variant that looks like an AKSU but in a different caliber.
Click here to get a list of more M70 variants.
Most noticeable difference between the AKMS and die M70 is the gas block and the receiver, wich alomst looks like one used on an RPK (notice that reinforced sections underneath the charging handle?).
With the M70AB2 AEG, LCT did create a true beauty. Com-Block fans are already waiting for years for this specific model. Some hardcore fans did build their very own versions out of demilled real steal models – yes FIDO, I’m pointing at you!
For the non-AK fan this might be just another AK variant – for me it’s a little dream come true.
The Box, Build Quality, Details
The M70 comes in a simple and plain cardboard box which has only two stickers on the front: an LCT logo on the left and the product name on the right. Nothing special but absolutely sufficient.
On the Inside there’s your M70AB2, a high-cap magazine and a catalog. I’m missing the good old cleaning rod because if this is your first AEG, you won’t have any laying around at home and a possible jam can be quite hard to remove without it.
So let’s take a look at the specs: gearbox version 3, 910mm long – 650 with the stock collapsed, 3.45kg heavy and a muzzle velocity around 390 to 430 feet per second (with 0.2g BBs).
When it comes to materials, there’s only one word needed: STEEL. Everywhere – mixed with a tiny bit of plastic (grip) and wood (upper- and lower handguard). Ok, not everything is made out of steel, a few parts are made of cast steel and other cast metals but this AEG is one solid piece.
The upper- and lower handguard are made of real wood, which looks a bit cheap at first sight. To be honest, if you take a look at the real Zastava M70, the wood looks totally the same so LCT did a good job replicating the wood parts.
The stain comes off quite easily – that’s a benefit if you are going for the “used-look”, not so good if you want your M70 to be a beauty even after a few games. To be honest, “beauty” is such a subjective term in my opinion.
The build quality of the LCT M70AB2 reminds me a lot of the “old” AEGs, especially the OEM kits that LCT had made for Inokatsu before starting their own prodcut line. The receiver feels more solid then the ones used in the AK100 series, it feels thicker and the paint/coating looks different too.
The stock is the most solid under folding stock I’ve seen so far. It takes quite a lot of force to fold the stock and flip the shoulder brace into position. Feels like I could smash a door with this rifle.
The rifle grenade flip-up sight is made out of sheet steel and can easily be flipped up and down. LCT offers an additional flash hider or rifle grenade adapter that can be mounted on the AEG’s -14mm thread. This adapter is pure decorative and you can’t actually fire any rifle grenades. Maybe someone comes up with a modified 40mm shower grenade?
Underneath the flash hider is your standard 14mm counter clockwise thread so you can mount virtually any other after market flash hider and silencer you want.
The sling attachment is located on the left side right next to the gas block. It’s an unusual position for an AK sling attachment as they normally are located right next to the handguard retainer.
The hop-up is located where every other AK hop-up is located: underneath the charging handle. It’s made out of plastic and can be adjusted easily.
It works very well for a plastic hop-up. If it doesn’t break, there’s no need to replace this one.
I can’t say much about the barrel. It is made out of brass, it is straight, range is good, groupings are good. Barrel is good.
What I really like about the M70 is that the magazines fit tightly an they don’t wobble around like they normally do an AKs. I can’t tell you exactly which aftermarket mags fit as I only have LCT mags or third party mags that I did modify to fit my older LCT AEGs. There are some magazines out there that need some minor modifications in order to fit properly.
Battery Space? Tight!
The biggest of all AK AEG problems: the battery space. Back in the days NiCd and NiMh stick-type batteries (2/3A cells) were the common battery of choice for AKs with folding stocks. One might think, that in 2014, you could easily fit a 2s or 3s LiPo or even a 3s LiFe battery in there, right? Think again!
Sadly, the rear sight block of the LCT M70AB2 is designed to accommodate the good old 2/3A cells and finding a LiPo battery that fits easily is a hard task. As you can see in the photo above, the LiFe battery pack doesn’t fit into the rear sight block and “inside” the curved charging handle due to its wider diameter.
To fit a LiFe battery into the M70, you have to sand out the rear sight block and parts of the receiver which is hard and dirty work and requires power tools.
I had to search quite a while to find the right battery that was slim enough to fit: a 2 cell LiPo with 1.3Ah from the company “Nano-Tech” (Hobbyking).
Dear manufacturers: there’s only one manufacturer in the business that was smart enough to make the opening of the rear sight block wide enough to fit even LiFe batteries – please do us AK fans a favor and redesign the opening of the rear sight block so we can use our beloved 2s and 3s batteries without having to sacrifice voltage or capacity.
It’s 2014, no one wants to use 2/3A batteries anymore.
Compatibility with other AKs
At first sight, the M70AB2 looks almost the same as the AIMS on the picture below. When looking closely, the M70 has a longer upper and lower handguard, a longer gas tube, the front sight is a few millimeters up front and the receiver/dust cover is a tad shorter.
Why is that important? There are tons of aftermarket handguards and rail systems out there that one might think of mounting to the M70.
The side-by-side comparison clearly shows the difference in the photo below.
A dark outlook for those wanting to mount those uper-tactical accessories to the M70.
The lack of a siderail makes mounting optics even harder. Purist will tell you that “rifle is fine” and “this Serbian Cudgel doesn’t need any fancy accessories”. But there aren’t only purists out there thinking of getting one of those fine AEGs. If you really need a rifle scope on your AEG, you better buy another AK variant from LCT.
A Look inside the Gearbox
So let’s take a look inside the gearbox of the M70. At first, we need to get it out of the gun – I’ll show you the key steps for removing the gearbox:
Take a hex key and unscrew the small setscrew on the left side of the button that holds the dust cover in place. Remove the charging handle, the rod and spring.
Unscrew the fire selector by using a plier. Be gentle and don’t scratch the screw too hard.
Remove the rear sight by pressing it down and pushing it to the rear, unscrew the two setscrews located on the bottom.
Pull the outer barrel and the rear sight block forward, the nozzle should be free now.
Remove the gearbox from the receiver by pulling it upwards.
Well done, no we have the gearbox laying in front of us.
LCT has upgraded its gearbox compared to the AK100 series. The material of the shell looks way better and cleaner and the gearbox behaves much better then before – it sounds better, the gears are shimmed properly and the compression of thy cylinder unit is perfect.
The gears are well greased, everything looks clean even after my testing. I’m very pleased with the gearbox so far.
As for the internal parts we get a SP120-ish spring, a polycarbonate spring guide (I’d replace it with a metal one considering the strong spring), a stainless steel cylinder and cylinder head (that has two o-rings), a polycarbonate piston with steel teeth, a polycarbonate tappet plate and a polycarbonate air-seal nozzle (o-ring on the inside).
The gearbox is very well made, only the polycarbonate spring guide seems to be a bit undersized with the built-in spring. A metal one would have been great as I’ve seen far too many polycarbonate spring guides break.
The motor is a standard one, nothing special. The trigger response is quite good with a 2s lipo. A torque up motor with stronger magnets would be my motor of choice for this gearbox.
Chrono & ROF Test
Tested with 0.2g BBs and a 2s 1300mAh LiPo battery.
The M70 chronos at 413FPS / 1.59J and has a ROF of 750rds/min with a 2s LiPo battery.
The M70AB2 feels like an LCT AEG from back in the days when LCT was producing OEM kits for Inokatsu – solid, well made and top performing. If the retail price of around 400 USD is justified is quite hard to tell without looking at the AEG from different angles.
The quality is top notch and you can tell the difference when looking at the slightly cheaper AK models from LCT and models from other manufacturers. The gearbox is reinforced and works flawlessly. So from a pure quality point of view, the price may be justified.
Besides the high price, the lack of compatibility with other AK accessories might narrow down the circle of buyers even more.
The LCT M70AB2 is an AEG for collectors and purists, for com-block fans and those who have always wanted to own a rare AK variant as an AEG that clearly stands out.
If you enjoy quality craftsmanship and don’t feel the need for adding a lot of accessories, the M70AB2 is for you. If you are looking for an AK AEG that is a bit more customizable, LCT offers a wide range of AK variants and I’m sure you find one that fits your needs.
Where to buy a M70?
You can get the LCT M70AB2 at WGC Shop in Hong Kong
Big thanks to LCT Airsoft for letting us test die new M70AB2. Be sure to check out their website and give them a like on Facebook.