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Thread: US Made Saiga 308 mags. Finally!!!!

  1. #11
    Gunco Veteran patjsimpson's Avatar
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    Holy cow that was fast... I ordered friday and got them today. These mags are built like a tank and lock up nice and tight. Can't wait to take them to the range to give them a try. When I do I will give a range report!
    Pat

  2. #12
    Gunco Member BlackhawkFan's Avatar
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    I have five S308 recently purchased from Dinzag.

    When I first got them, I had to break sharp edges and points on all five magazines.

    Last night I was practicing inserting a magazine in the dark. Damned thing wouldn't go in. Kept binding forward or backward. (Gosh, does this indicate a radius issue?)

    Now I'm an AR guy, so I figured I was at the steep part of the learning curve. I grabbed an original Saiga and it went right in. In the dark. Over and over. I grabbed an American made plastic mag and it also went right in on each attempt.

    I turned on the light and started to check out the magazine.

    The first thing I noticed is these haven't been heat treated. The steel is soft, and my practice caused the magazine to deform at the back part of the feed lips and both the front and back latch lips. Closer examination and comparing it to an original Saiga magazine also revealed that the back part of the magazine just below the feed lips was bulging outward a couple of thousandths.

    I took a file to the feed lips to remove some metal (the radius problem). I also smoothed the latch lips. A light hammer removed the bulge at the back of the magazine just below the feed lips.

    I performed the same modifications to a second CSSpec magazine. Both now insert flawlessly. They also cycle rounds by hand, but that wasn't an issue before. I'll modify the remaining three tonight.

    I really, really hope someone else realizes there's a market hungry for Saiga 308 magazines and starts to produce. As it stands, the only reliable magazines for my S308 are the OEM. The other two brands have major issues, and I won't hesitate to call each an amateurish attempt that should have had the design properly peer reviewed and tested before coming to market.

    Sorry to sound harsh, but at $50 each for the steel and $40 each for the plastic, I have yet to get my money's worth.

  3. #13
    Gunco Member csspecs's Avatar
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    One of the annoyances in the design of the saiga .308 is how far the magazine cams while being removed from the gun (a square object is always longer on an angle). The front lug being low on the mag makes this a real design headache, if you look at AK mags you'll see how high the front lug is in comparison. Think of a box with a pivot in the top corner, as you move that pivot point down the side of the box, the arc becomes wider.

    I find it helps to pull down on the mag while keeping forward pressure. This keeps the front lug firmly set in the trunnion and gives a little more slack on the back. Practice likely helps a lot, I cycle test the mags and will change them without a glance.

    There are also two small support rails on the inside of the rifle that have sharp edges, I recommend blunting the corners slightly. They like to slag the area where the feedlips are notched away.


  4. #14
    Gunco Member BlackhawkFan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by csspecs View Post
    One of the annoyances in the design of the saiga .308 is how far the magazine cams while being removed from the gun (a square object is always longer on an angle). The front lug being low on the mag makes this a real design headache, if you look at AK mags you'll see how high the front lug is in comparison. Think of a box with a pivot in the top corner, as you move that pivot point down the side of the box, the arc becomes wider.
    Agreed. This is the radius issue I was referring to. I solved this by removing some of the metal at the back of the magazine, thus reducing the radius.

    I find it helps to pull down on the mag while keeping forward pressure. This keeps the front lug firmly set in the trunnion and gives a little more slack on the back. Practice likely helps a lot, I cycle test the mags and will change them without a glance.
    Having problems visualizing your first sentence. I agree completely with the second. Practice will help, which is how I discovered this problem in the first place.

    What I failed to mention in my previous post is during my practice, there came a point where the magazine failed to extract. I was practicing with an empty mag, and the piece of metal extending from the follower got bent and prevented extraction. I had to disassemble the rifle to remove the magazine. Not something I'd like to experience in a less casual situation.

    There are also two small support rails on the inside of the rifle that have sharp edges, I recommend blunting the corners slightly. They like to slag the area where the feedlips are notched away.

    I was looking at these. I'll hit it with a file tonight and see what develops.

    My opinion, of course (I'm not a metalurgist), but you really need to temper the magazine body. You're using a stamped low carbon steel that deforms easily. Adding material at the mouth of the magazine will only make it heavier, and this is certainly heavy enough. Normalize the metal prior to stamping, then temper after your welding operations. Should help the metal's memory and not add much to production cost.

  5. #15
    Gunco Veteran patjsimpson's Avatar
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    Interesting I have not had any of the problems you mention. Time will tell but hopefully I wont.
    pat

  6. #16
    Gunco Member BlackhawkFan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patjsimpson View Post
    Interesting I have not had any of the problems you mention. Time will tell but hopefully I wont.
    pat
    Yeah. Like I said, I'm an AR guy. This is my first foray into the world of AKs. I'm sure there are a bunch of things I'm not doing correctly. Better to know now than when (if) I ever need the rifle for real.

    I know CSSpecs' magazines have a good rep which is why I was surprised the other night when I decided to practice in the dark.

    Changing magazines should be like playing the guitar...you shouldn't have to look at your hands.

  7. #17
    Gunco Member csspecs's Avatar
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    I'm trying to get a video to show what I think is happening... Me and cameras don't get along very well. And I am not a good person for making a video (to many errs and umms).

    Basically due to design differences, the loading method needs to be adjusted slightly.

    If you notice our front tab is shorter, on the factory mag the front tab contacts the bolt while reloading, this prevents over travel of the magazine. We left our front tab shorter to avoid jams, so it is possible to push the mag to far into the gun while locking it in.

    I'll try to get a video of it up tomorrow. It is a little hard to explain without picture/video.
    Last edited by csspecs; 04-25-2010 at 02:40 AM.

  8. #18
    Gunco Veteran gunnysmith's Avatar
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    To my understanding, the rock and lock is to allow extra leverage to compensate the fact you are latching on a closed bolt. Tha requires the top round be pushed downward by the bottom of the bolt.
    normally the AR seats a mag om the open bolt.
    Constitution Or Bust
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  9. #19
    Gunco Member BlackhawkFan's Avatar
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    As for inserting a loaded mag with the bolt closed, it only requires slamming the mag with the palm of the hand to seat the mag (but you already knew that...).

    CS, I might have mentioned this before, but I'll say it again.

    I filed (smoothed) both latches on the mags (they chew up easily) as well as broke the sharp edges. This seemed to help.

    And I'm still practicing inserting the magazines. They work much better now.

    I'll be buying more, since I can fix them with simple file work, and steel doesn't tear like the polymer version does.

    Also, I downloaded the pic you posted. I'll blow it up and mod the rifle using the pic as direction.

    Thanks for your time.

  10. #20
    Gunco Lurker cma g21's Avatar
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    I have 12 of his magazines, including two bought when he first started selling them.
    All have functioned 100%. They're built like tanks!

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