Norinco is a huge consortium of manufacturing plants in China that make all manner of goods for export, including military hardware. One of Norinco’s factories has been making copies of the American M14 rifle for export for some time, although they are not seen in the United States because Chinese rifle imports are prohibited. Canada has no such restriction, however, and because Canadian law specifically bans most other 7.62mm NATO semiauto rifles by name, the Norinco M14s (formally designated the M305) have become very popular there, in both original 22″ and shortened 18.5″ barrel lengths.
Just recently, the factory added another variation of the rifle – a conversion to 7.62x39mm, using AK magazines, called the M305A. This appears to have been a remarkably simply conversion, as the AK mag fits nicely into the receiver with only a minor change to the magazine support well in the stock. Sure, some might ask why one would want an M14 in 7.62×39…but those people are clearly not familiar with the firearms market. These smaller-caliber rifles are quite pleasant to shoot, and use much cheaper ammunition as well. They are substantially heavier than comparable rifles like the SKS, but have nicer aperture sights.
Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot one of the M305A rifles!