As has been mentioned... the Arsenal SLR is NOT Russian. The SLR is Romanian or Bulgarian (thus the R), The SGL is Russian (thus the L, for Legion). They are both fantastic rifle and would be hard to match, $ wise, if doing the same type of conversion (full). However, if you're ok with just a rear "restoration" (front trunion back), then the Saiga is the more economical.
Many people think that Arsenal's are just "restored" Saiga's. They are NOT. Arsenal has their OWN deal with Saiga where they get reciever that were never "sporterized" in the first place. Thus they don't have the added "sporter" trigger slot, "sporter" trigger pin holes, etc. They are NOT converted in any way shape or form. They are a true Russian receiver (virgin) that is assembled with some US parts to meet 922r compliance.
You can convert (restore) a Saiga (cheaper for Trunion back, more expensive for entire resoration), but it will have A) sporter trigger slot, sporter trigger pin holes, C) holes for the "sporter plate", D) non mated trigger guard/mag catch (conversions will have seperately bolted on trigger guard), E) left over BHO slot.. All of this leaves you with a reciever with LOT'S of holes. It may LOOK similar to an Arsenal... but it is FAR from it.
Arsenal's are the real deal. Converted/restored Saiga's are close (but NOT the same). Think of Saiga's as the "poor man's Arsenal", they look similar, and have most of the same quality parts, but the details (HOLES, HOLES, HOLES) are what make the difference.
Edited by Brian M1, 16 September 2012 - 02:32 AM.