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Thread: Saiga Conversion Services

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    Gunco Member steve10's Avatar
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    Default Saiga Conversion Services

    After looking at sites offer saiga conversions I was surprised at how much they charge for their services. The pieces installed are relatively inexpensive, and the work does not seem so complex as to require 300-400 dollars worth of labor. That being said I was thinking of starting my own saiga conversion business. This is 100% speculation at this point, but I have a few questions.

    Would I need anything more than a standard FFL lisence to legally do this?

    What would you look for in a quality saiga conversion?

    If you have used one of the more expensive services, what did they offer that made the price worth it?

    Thanks for your imput. Any and all advice is appreciated.

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    BANNED nalioth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve10 View Post
    Would I need anything more than a standard FFL lisence to legally do this?
    You are not manufacturing anything, so a standard 01 FFL will do fine.
    Quote Originally Posted by steve10 View Post
    What would you look for in a quality saiga conversion?
    High quality work to the customers specifications. Unnecessary holes tigged up professionally. Refinishing, of course (how many types is up to you [parkerizing / fancy-cote / etc]).
    Quote Originally Posted by steve10 View Post
    If you have used one of the more expensive services, what did they offer that made the price worth it?
    Most of the "expensive services" did not start out that way, but years of quality work and excellent customer service have brought them to that level.

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    Gunco Regular renegadebuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve10 View Post
    After looking at sites offer saiga conversions I was surprised at how much they charge for their services. The pieces installed are relatively inexpensive, and the work does not seem so complex as to require 300-400 dollars worth of labor. That being said I was thinking of starting my own saiga conversion business. This is 100% speculation at this point, but I have a few questions.

    Would I need anything more than a standard FFL lisence to legally do this?

    What would you look for in a quality saiga conversion?

    If you have used one of the more expensive services, what did they offer that made the price worth it?

    Thanks for your imput. Any and all advice is appreciated.

    It's not the price of the parts. It's what you sometimes have to do to them to make them work. I started a .308 conversion today and the Tapco single hook trigger group spring hole was not big enough and had to be drilled. Doesn't sound like a big deal, I let my grunt do it. Three hours later, after welding the sear back where he allowed the drill press to get off and drill through the side, re-tempering and polishing, I had a usable trigger group. Tomorrow I'll TIG up the unused holes and put a finish on the rifle. After it bakes on for 8 hours or so, I'll start assembly and hopefully, everything else will work correctly.

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    Chief Administrator 7.62x39's Avatar
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    Tapco had a recall on the FCGs with incorrectly drilled disconnecter spring holes and replaced them all N/C. Beyond that, why would you spend 3 hours trying to save a $28 part?
    .

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    Gunco Rookie nikered's Avatar
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    The hardest part of the conversion is getting that little bolt hold open spring in place but if you have a piece of dental floss and pull it down through the bolt hold open hole while getting it in place it works like a charm

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    No Hope For Me Coils's Avatar
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    but if you have a piece of dental floss and pull it down through the bolt hold open hole
    Fishing line works great too.
    "Government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem" Ronald Reagan

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    Keep It In The 10 Ring rifleman223's Avatar
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    I found this detailed link for saiga rifle conversion check it out hope this helps I have not done this conversion myself yet Saiga Conversion

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    Keep It In The 10 Ring rifleman223's Avatar
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    I agree I have seen conversions for $1200 or more starting out with a $350 dollar rifle they due look nice but I think take your time might be able to get similar results that's my opinion

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    BANNED nalioth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rifleman223 View Post
    I found this detailed link for saiga rifle conversion check it out hope this helps I have not done this conversion myself yet LINK REMOVED
    I wish we could stop passing that 12 year old how-to around.

    It is no longer relevant in many ways, and can confuse people.

    • The rifles it demos are not imported any more (many changes have been made to the Saiga since then)
    • Some of the laws it references no longer exist
    • Magazine availability has skyrocketed for .223 Saigas (no need to sacrifice an East German AK74 magazine any more)
    • The guy is showing off his machine shop - no machine shop is necessary for a conversion (and folks get antsy thinking they need $50,000 worth of machinery)

    There are many fine modern videos on youtube and vimeo that show how easy a conversion is.

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    Gunco Rookie Fuglystick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve10 View Post
    After looking at sites offer saiga conversions I was surprised at how much they charge for their services. The pieces installed are relatively inexpensive, and the work does not seem so complex as to require 300-400 dollars worth of labor. That being said I was thinking of starting my own saiga conversion business. This is 100% speculation at this point, but I have a few questions.

    Would I need anything more than a standard FFL license to legally do this?

    What would you look for in a quality saiga conversion?

    If you have used one of the more expensive services, what did they offer that made the price worth it?

    Thanks for your imput. Any and all advice is appreciated.
    I agree the folks who are doing those conversions and doing them well are getting that #$ for the work they are doing but when you brake it down it is not really all that much$ per gun.

    My last conversion took somewhere in the 8-12 hr range to complete. Standard conversion will take you a couple hrs.

    Taken from the Red Jacket site with prices from MAA in Itallics:

    (Converting your Saiga shotguns/rifles from "sporterized" configurations to pistol grip, assault type configurations)

    Front end left original,
    old fire control grou holes welded,
    accepts hi-cap mags,
    922 compliant with G-2 fire control group. (27.22 for trigger)
    Price includes all parts and full refinish with Gunkote (20 for a can)
    S-12 or Rifle :
    Basic Pistol grip/Hi-cap conversion (Pistol grip 10$, Butstock 30$

    $350.00

    So you have about 100$ in shipping so you are paying $250 for the labor.

    To disassemble and remove the old parts, weld necessary holes, sand blast and paint as well as bake the finish then assemble the gun. Do not forget about inventory the gun in and out plus packing and unpacking.

    I also know that Will polishes the trigger group components.

    When the smoke clears it is a lot of effort for the 250$. Not saying there is no $ in it. just that it is not as much as most think.

    If you decide to go for it then good luck , always good to see new folks jumping in and getting their feet wet.

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