Careless use of any firearm can be dangerous. The
warnings and instructions in this manual should be
read thoroughly so that you might fully understand
how to properly use your SKS rifle.
Accidental discharge can occur from careless
handling and could cause serious injury, death or
damage to property.
SKS RIFLES SHOULD BE CLEANED THOROUGHLY PRIOR TO
Use only 7.62x39mm ammunition in your SKS rifle.
Never attempt to use ammunition of any other
caliber in your gun. Use only new manufactured
ammunition that is of high quality and in good
Never use remanufactured or hand loaded (reloaded)
ammunition or ammunition that is faulty, incorrect
or non-standard, as both the manufacturer and the
importer of this firearm specifically disclaim
responsibility for any damage or injury whatsoever
occurring in connection with or as the result of
the use of such ammunition with this firearm.
History of the SKS
The concept of the assault rifle began with the
Soviets in the early 1900's. Later, during
World War I, Vladimir Federov introduced the
Federov 1916 Automatic Rifle, which fired a
6.5x50.5 SR Japanese cartridge. At this time this
cartridge was thought to be the best for use in
rapid firing rifles. These guns were used toward
the end of the 1914-18 war and the Russo-Finnish
war of 1939-40.
During world war II the Russians were needed for
the "Avtomat" increased, and they adopted
use of a 7.62x39mm cartridge. The weapon created by
S.G. Simonov to fire this cartridge was the SKS-45
(Samozaryadni Karabin Simonova) a self loading
carbine, which was scaled down version of the
14.5x111.8mm PRTS anti- tank rifle. The SKS-45 was
easy to field strip and maintain and was quite
At the same time, M.T. Kalashnikov was working on
designing a series of small arms, which would also
use the 7.62x39mm cartridge. He was successful, and
developed one of the best known military weapons of
our time, the AK-47 (Avtomat Kalashnikova) in 1947.
The AK-47 was the prototype for many subsequent
versions, and the Chinese manufactured SKS Type 56
rifle is a direct derivative of Kalashnikov's
design. At the conclusion of World War II, the
People's Republic of China inherited many of
these Soviet weapons from the Japanese (The
Japanese had seized them in Manchuria.).
During the Chinese civil war, the PRC began making
this equipment, and by wars end were well on their
way to standardizing production of these
Soviet-type small arms.
In recent years, the PRC has been producing the
7.62x39mm Type 68, the 7.62x 39mm Type 67, the
7.62x25mm Type 64, and the SKS Type 56 with the
distinguishing folding bayonet.
The SKS-56 was encountered frequently during the
As a military weapon, the SKS rifle is only used by
frontier forces, however it remains ever popular
with American sportsman as a hunting weapon, and as
always with collectors and firearms enthusiasts.
Specifications of the SKS Type 56:
7.62 x 39mm
Length: 40.20 inches
Barrel: 20.5 inches, 4 groove,
Muzzle Velocity: 2.410
Magazine: 10-round fixed box
Aiming range: 0.621 mile or 1 kilometer
The SKS rifle consists of 11 main parts.
1. Recoil Spring Assembly
2. Receiver Cover
5. Gas Tube/Handgaurd Assembly
8. Trigger Group
11. Cleaning Rod
The Basic SKS Accessories.
1. Cleaning Rod Head
4. Oil Can
5. Accessory Case
6. Muzzle cap
7. Gasport Cleaning Tool
Operating the SKS:
Instructions for Loading (ALWAYS BE
CONSCIOUS OF MUZZLE POSITION!!)
1. Flip the safety to the "ON" position.
2. Pull charging handle on bolt carrier back until
the action locks open.
3. Load with either single rounds or stripper
Again remain conscious of muzzle position.
4. Pull charging handle back and let the bolt
carrier fly forward to chamber the first round.
5. The rifle is now loaded.
Instructions for Firing(ALWAYS REMAIN
CONSCIOUS OF MUZZLE POSITION!!)
1. Aim rifle down range.
2. Release the safety.
3. Place the finger inside trigger guard on the
4. Pull the trigger. Instruction for after firing
(ALWAYS REMAIN CONSCIOUS OF MUZZLE POSITION!!)
When the gun is fired, gas
pressure is extracted from the spent cartridges,
and they are ejected. New rounds are then
automatically fed until all
rounds are gone, or the shooter stops firing.
When finished firing, lock back
the bolt and always engage the safety before
unloading unused shells.
Instructions for Unloading:(ALWAYS
REMAIN CONSCIOUS OF MUZZLE POSITION!!)
1. If bolt was locked back, rifle should be
2. Visually inspect the magazine and chamber to
confirm that gun is empty.
3. If unsure whether empty, immediately place the
safety in the "ON" position.
4. Release the magazine cover by pulling back the
magazine cover latch.(figure5)
5. Any unexpended rounds will now be freed from the
6. Now, lock the magazine cover back in place.
7. Next, pull back the charging handle to the rear
and extract and eject the live round in the
chamber. The bolt stop will automatically lock the
bolt carrier back. (figure6)
8. Again visually inspect the weapon.
SKS Disassembly and Assembly
Instructions for Disassembly/Assembly
1. Take out all the accessories. With a finger,
press in on the cover of the accessory chamber on
the butt plate and take the case for accessories
out of the stock.(figure7) Open the case
and take out the accessories.
2. To remove the cleaning rod: Swing the bayonet
outward from the muzzle of the rifle and remove the
cleaning rod. Then, fold the bayonet back down to a
3. To remove receiver cover and recoil spring
assembly: Hold the small of the stock with your
left hand, pressing with your thumb on the rear of
the receiver cover (figure8); Rotate with
the right hand the receiver cover retaining pin arm
upward to its vertical position and pull the pin
out to the right as far as possible. (figure9) Allow receiver
cover to move backward 1/2" and remove by
sliding to rear.(figure10) Remove the
recoil spring from the rear of the bolt carrier.
certain to reinstall recoil spring with C Clip end
4. To remove the bolt: Pull the bolt back as far as
it will go, and remove entire assembly.(figure12) When
reinstalling bolt, be certain magazine cover is not
5. To remove Gas tube/Handguard Assembly: Use a pin
punch to pry the lever located on the right of rear
sight base into the position where the camming
surface located at the front is completely
vertical. (figure13) CAUTION:
Further movement will allow operating rod and
spring to escape.
6. Now remove the Gas tube/Handguard assembly,
raise the handguard assembly and rock it slowly
from side to side until it can be pulled away from
the gas block.(figure14)
7. The gas piston can now be pulled out of the gas
tube/Handguard assembly. NOTE: The seven steps
listed are sufficient to field-strip the rifle for
cleaning and regular maintenance.
ASSEMBLY ONLY REQUIRES THAT YOU PERFORM THE ABOVE
STEPS IN REVERSE ORDER.
Cleaning the SKS:
Make a safe examination of the rifle to be certain
it is not loaded before cleaning.
To clean, begin with the rifle field Stripped.
Instruction for Cleaning the rifle
1. Attach the bore brush to the cleaning rod.
2. Saturate the bore brush with gun solvent and
push though the length of barrel.(figure15) If using
corrosive primer, this step is very important to
remove the corrosive residue from the barrel of
3. Make at least 10 passes though the barrel from
the muzzle end. The cap of the accessory tube can
be used to protect the crown of the muzzle from
damage during cleaning. Use a cleaning jag or
slotted tip and push a clean dry patch through the
bore. Alternate this procedure with wet and dry
patches until patches come out clean.
4. Dry the bore with a clean patch, and then again
apply a thin coat of oil to the bore with a final
oil soaked patch.
5. While cleaning the bore, you should also give
the chamber area a thorough brushing as well. Use
the same technique with the patches, alternating
wet and dry until the chamber is clean. Do not
leave oil residue in the chamber.
6. Clean the bolt, bolt carrier, piston, recoil
spring and receiver. A toothbrush can be used
effectively for cleaning these parts. Wipe them
dry, and then coat the bearing surfaces of the bolt
and bolt carrier with a thin coat of grease. Do not
pour oil into the receiver indiscriminately.
7. Clean the gas port block area.(figure16) Remove the
gas piston from the handguard and gas cylinder
assembly, and clean thoroughly with solvent. Remove
all carbon fouling, Dry with a clean rag, then
apply a light coat of oil. (gas port cleaning tool
is normally not included in basic cleaning kits,
but it is available from SKS parts dealer.)
TO RE-ASSEMBLE REVERSE THE TAKE DOWN PROCESS
Removing the trigger mechanism and magazine
1. Place the safety in the "ON"
2. Release box magazine cover.
3. Use a pin punch to strike the trigger mechanism
retaining button at the rear of trigger
4. Once released, the trigger assembly can be
pulled back from the stock assembly.
5. With the trigger mechanism removed, and the bolt
locked in the open position, the magazine can be
taken out of the stock by simultaneously pulling
the magazine down and to the rear.(figure18)
When reinstalling magazine be certain front of
magazine is engaged in lug on receiver.
AT THIS TIME, RECEIVER BARREL STOCK ASSEMBLY MAY BE
Removing Receiver and Barrel Assembly From the
(Prior to start, remove trigger
mechanism/magazine.)1. Extend bayonet.
2. Lay gun on padded table upside down.
3. With right hand hold rear of receiver assembly
tightly against table with screwdriver or punch.
With left hand, lift up firmly on stock separating
the two pieces. (figure19)
NOTE: Crossbolt removal is not required or
ASSEMBLY REQUIRES ONLY THAT YOU PERFORM THE ABOVE
STEPS IN REVERSE ORDER
Using a front sight elevation tool, insert the
forked end of the tool into the top of the front
Engage the tool into the flats of the front sight
Turn the tool counter clockwise to lower the
bullets point of impact on the target.
To raise the point of impact turn the tool
Using a small mallet and brass punch, or an after
market windage adjustment tool, windage can be
adjusted by drifting the front sight seat, in the
From the perspective of a sight picture, move the
front sight seat in the opposite direction you want
your point of impact to shift. For example, to move
the group on the target to the left, drift the
front sight seat to the right.
The rear sight is an open notch type which is
adjustable for elevation from 100 meters to 1000
meters(110-1100 yards). There is also an all
purpose "battle" setting on the sight
ladder, set for 300 meters(330 yards). This is
attained by moving the elevation slide to the rear
of the ladder as far as it will go.
Mounting the Bayonet:
Begin by sliding the bayonet handle and the bayonet
spring over the tang of the spike bayonet.
Push downward on the handle until the slot for
attaching the bayonet screw is exposed.
Hold the bayonet carefully in this position with
the muzzle ring facing the muzzle of the rifle and
insert the bayonet pin with a screwdriver of proper
view of SKS 56
2. Handguard and gas cylinder
3. Piston extension
4. Piston return spring
5. Front sight
6. Front sight seat
7. Handguard catch
8. Bayonet screw
9. Bayonet assembly
10. Hold open latch pin
11. Hold open latch spring
12. Hold open latch
13. Receiver and Barrel
14. Takedown latch
15. Trigger guard latch
16. Latch pin
17. Rear housing
18. Bolt carrier
20. Firing pin retainer
21. Firing pin
22. Extractor spring
24. Recoil spring
25. Spring retainer
26. Large spring guide
27. Small spring guide
28. Stock assembly
29. Trigger guard spring
31. Magazine follower
32. Follower spring
33. Hinge pin
34. Magazine cover
35. Cover latch
36. Latch spring and sear spring
38. Latch stop pin
39. Trigger guard
40. Disconnector hinge assembly
41. Trigger pin
42. Safety catch
43. Safety catch spring
45. Safety catch pin
46. Trigger bar
47. Trigger bar pin
48. Trigger spring
50. Rebound Disconnector
52. Hammer strut pin
53. Hammer strut
54. Hammer spring
55. Cleaning rod
56. Buttplate Assembly