Originally Posted by howlnmad
My real question is, why is the SKS on the curio and relics list but not the AK? Anyone help me with that?
Any firearm that is 50+ years old, in its original configuration, and not regulated by the National Firearms Act qualifies as a C&R weapon. It does not need to be on the list.
My understanding is that the list was made of firearms that did not already meet the basic criteria listed above but were still of significant collector's value.
The SKS spent only a short time in military service (1949 in Russia to sometime in the 1980s in China), so it's now exclusively a collector's weapon.
On the other hand, many countries still use AK variants as their basic assault weapon, so it is considered to have some military value.
The biggest reason is probably the NFA thing: the SKS was a semi-auto, so it's OK, but a true AK fires full-auto, so the US government doesn't trust citizens with it.